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maryann johanson, striking from a hidden base

Survivor: Pearl Islands: The Complete Seventh Season (review)

Okay, I get it: It’s like Lost, only fake. Look, I know people love this series, but damned if I can understand why. It’s not like the “castaways” are actually stranded, actually cut off from food and water, actually fighting for their lives. Sure, the producers this time out try to fool us into thinking this is more “real” than previous outings by dumping the contestants into the Pacific waters in their streetclothes, and without the goodies they’ve brought with them, but it’s still a giant game show of organized competitions carefully constructed to bring out the catty, bitchy, manipuative worst in people. It’s not even as if the “castaways” have been chosen at random — each of the two teams here has been precisely crafted for maximum impact, and as the season progresses, each episode becomes — very tediously — more and more about everyone yakking into the camera trying to analyze and second-guess what everyone else is doing. You want a real Survivor? Throw a bunch of people on a deserted island with no tools and no supplies, leave them alone for a month with no cameras to play to, and come back and see who made it out alive. That’d be a real test of… something or other. Extras include audio commentary on five episodes by various cast members, pre-island interviews with the contestants, and a featurette recapping the entire season.

MPAA: not rated

viewed at home on a small screen

official site | IMDb
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