Three-time “Survivor” contestant and popular fan favorite Malcolm Freberg isn’t afraid to speak his mind when it comes to the show. Not only has he opened up to fans about Survivor’s production secrets, but he’s also publicly criticized the production for implementing twists that he believes will “ruin” the show in 2021.
Malcolm, who played a total of 79 days while on Survivor, recently wrote one Editorial for insiders reveals the most interesting behind-the-scenes facts about the Tribal Council that even superfans may not know, but certainly want to know.
Here’s everything you need to know:
Participants have to wait hours before tribal even begins
Though Tribal Council may be fun for viewers at home, Malcolm believes it’s one of the “worst parts of the show,” at least as a player, and not just because he was voted out on three of them.
Most fans of the show are aware that Tribal Council is not what it appears on TV. For example, Tribal Council much longer than it appears on TV (according to Malcolm, it actually takes host Jeff Probst about 15 minutes to count the votes before returning to read them). However, Malcolm also revealed that the trial even took place before Tribal begins will also be extended.
For one thing, the footage used in virtually every episode of participants walking in a line down the beach holding their torches en route to Tribal is shot multiple times. “We lined up, took a producer’s cue, and then walked 100 yards down the beach,” Malcolm explained. “Then we turned, walked back the 100 meters, waited for the next cue, and did it all over again.” This was done so the camera crew could get the perfect shot.
Furthermore, Malcolm wrote, participants often had to wait for hours before tribal even took place startedfor a number of reasons, in part because it needed to be dark for the production when Tribal was filmed:
Arrive from our camp on the beach [Tribal] usually lasted well over half an hour. Once there, everyone had to be medically examined and miked… Even though all these steps were quick, we had to wait until total darkness before we could start Tribal.
All in all, Malcolm wrote, after leaving camp, it usually took about two and a half hours for the tribal council to begin.
Jeff Probst is very different in real life
As viewers of the show are likely to know, in addition to being the show’s host, Jeff Probst is also one of the executive producers and plays a very active role in many aspects of its production behind the scenes. All of his decisions and actions regarding the show are in the interest of producing the best entertainment (or at least Probst’s vision).
Because of this, Malcolm warned in the editorial to anyone who might consider going on the show in the future, “Under no circumstances piss off Probst,” he wrote. First and foremost, for Probst, it’s about making a tribal council worthy of television, and that means zero tolerance for any “yes,” “no,” or general dud answers, whatever.
Malcolm described a situation in his first season “Philippines” where one of his castmates tried to answer only “yes” or “no” during tribal. “I won’t reveal too much,” Malcolm wrote, “but imagine the worst tongue slapping your dad ever gave you in front of all your friends, and your dad is a television icon who can partially control your shot at a million-dollar prize.” .”
However, Probst is not always aggressive. As part of his effort to be fair to participants, he always reminds them that participants really do have control over how long tribals last and that he wants to make sure they all get their say. “Probst is very committed to empowering any shipwrecked person to delay the vote if they deem it necessary,” Malcolm said. As Probst has said to Tribal Council participants in Survivor episodes, “This is your tribal.”
You can read Malcolm’s full article on Insider here.
“Survivor 42” airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. Eastern on CBS. The three-hour finale will air Wednesday, May 25, 2022.
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