What kind of wackos think it will be great fun to live on porridge, sleep in cramped bunks in the hull of an old sailing ship, and risk life and limb hunting through really rugged terrain for clues to a pirate treasure? "They're tough," says Mark Burnett, whose latest adventure reality show, Pirate Master, premieres on May 31. Sure, there's a total of $1 million at stake hidden around the Caribbean island of Dominica, but the daunting physical demands make Survivor'schallenge look wimpy. "It's a really interesting diverse cast," says Burnett. "Everybody's a good athlete, but what they've learned is being a great pirate, you have to be really smart. When you're exhausted and you're trudging through a jungle, jumping off waterfalls or swimming up canyon lakes, you still have to think about what the pirate clues are.
"It takes a lot of brains," Burnett continues, "to decipher the clues. It's very, very hard. On top of that they're trying to sail a three-masted ship with huge sails. It's epic!"
Here is a first look at the men and women, who, Burnett says, "knew a lot about the world of pirates and all agree had they been born 250 years ago, they'd have like to have been pirates." In other words, meet the pirates:
29 Hometown: Tamaqua, Pennsylvania Occupation: ex-military
23 Hometown: Charleston, South Carolina Occupation: musician
43 Hometown: Fishing Creek, Maryland Occupation: marina owner
38 Hometown: Los Angeles Occupation: dive master
37 Hometown: Detroit Occupation: automotive parts salesman
26 Hometown: Los Angeles Occupation: music producer
35 Hometown: Sparks, Nevada Occupation: district attorney
25 Hometown: Carlisle, Massachusetts Occupation: scientist/Chippendale dancer
Joceyln "Joy" McElveen
21 Hometown: West Columbia, South Carolina Occupation: receptionist
Elicia "Jupiter" Mendoza
30 Hometown: Los Angeles Occupation: bartender
Joe Don "J.D." Morton
36 Hometown: Ft. Wainwright, Alaska Occupation: smokejumper
29 Hometown: Berkeley, California Occupation: make-up artist
45 Hometown: Rancho Cucamonga, California (and originally from Nigeria) Occupation: former Kansas City Chiefs player
21 Hometown: Los Angeles Occupation: glass blower
26 Hometown: Laguna Beach, California Occupation: fashion publicist
27 Hometown: Venice, California Occupation: bartender
For more on CBS' Pirate Master, see TVGuide.com's original first look.