“Outwit, Outplay, Outlast” has been the motto for Survivor for over twenty years, and now it’ll mean even more. Today, CBS has announced they are giving their hit reality composition supersized episodes. The change will start with the upcoming Season 45, airing this fall.
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Survivor first premiered in 2000 and quickly took over pop culture. Millions of Americans watched as sixteen castaways were dropped on an island and forced to survive. Hosted by Jeff Probst since the beginning, the reality competition series sees strangers forced to work together in extreme conditions while competing in challenges and voting each other off in an effort win the million dollar prize.
Now, twenty-three years and forty-four seasons later, fans are just as devoted as ever. The series is beloved for how it puts a lens on society and shows how anyone of us can become a “challenge beast” or strategic mastermind to win that money. Every week fans tune in to see new twists revealed, blindsides planned, heroes rise, villains scheme, and see who truly has what it takes to be the “sole survivor.”. CBS knows this and knows just how to keep our eyes glues to the screen, extra long episodes. The network is also giving the same treatment to The Amazing Race, meaning this fall Wednesday nights will be owned by reality competition on CBS.
Why Is Survivor Getting Supersized Episodes?
Well, fans have been clamoring for this change for years. Even Probst himself has hinted to wanting the move occasionally. Hour long episodes simply don’t give enough time to allow viewers to see everything. Episodes can often feel rushed and cramped. The editors have to balance giving air time to the season twists, episode challenge, castaways scheming, players having fun and bonding, showing why someone is about to get voted out, and more all while telling a cohesive season long story about how the eventual winner wins. Even fan-favorite seasons leave a lot on the cutting room floor. Supersized episodes will help with this a ton!
It is also worth noting that, while Probst and other producers have reportedly been fighting for this, this move wasn’t done out of CBS’s love for the fans. This was likely done as a reaction to the current WGA Strike. Should the strike continue, shows will be delayed and CBS will have to find a way to fill their air time. Giving two popular reality shows extra long episodes is an easy way to solve this problem without having to pay writers the fair wages that they are asking for. More information about the WGA Strike can be found here. Only time will tell if this change sticks once the strike is over.
Survivor is currently airing Season 44 on Wednesday Nights at 8 on CBS. Check out a trailer for the current season below: