It was two-for-the-price-of-one on Survivor: Ghost Island this week, when a game twist sent the remaining 10 contestants scrambling. In the end, two more Malolo bit the dust, one who was a fan-favorite and the other whom just couldn’t seem to catch a break.
If you missed any of the action, you can catch up with our Episode 11 Recap, as well as checking out the Podcast below.
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The first one to go this week was Jenna Bowman, who started the game on the Malolo tribe and whose game fully epitomizes this season’s “curse” theme. Constantly back-pedaling, Jenna was given scant screen-time throughout much of the season, and never really had a chance to get a foothold in the game due to constantly being in the minority alliance. She wasn’t even given a proper send-off, being told by Jeff Probst to immediately report to the jury, and then was robbed of her traditional credit-sequence good-bye due to the double-vote-out episode. Along the way though, Jenna did build some bonds, namely with Sebastian, whom she is reportedly dating in real life (listen to the Podcast for all the gossip).
The big blow to many viewers this week was that Michael Yerger also saw his torch get snuffed. Michael was a stand-out from the minute he stepped foot on the beaches of Fiji, and if there was ever a young man who was capable of lying-up about his age, it was him. Michael came in as the youngest to ever play the game and set himself up to return on some future season. As mentioned in the episode recap, Michael had it all: The social game, the strategic prowess, the physical ability and the intangible instincts that made him a super-threat. It wasn’t like the others didn’t know this: Michael received 15 votes – and played two Idols – along the way, before finally losing out due to what could be called more bad luck, when he was selected yet again to be in the minority alliance at a Tribal. Bad news for him: His last Tribal Council in the game put him on the same tribe as Dom and Wendell, two Survivor sharp-shooters who were not going to miss out at their chance to take out one of the game’s biggest targets.
I had the chance to speak to both Jenna and Michael today on the FilmSurvivor Podcast (the full audio of which you can find and download at the bottom of this article). But here are some highlights from the interviews:
On how tough it was to get voted out and then have to go immediately to jury:
Jenna Bowman: I don’t know, I just feel like I honestly wasn’t processing, wasn’t paying attention. I was pretty infuriated, I had just been blindsided by someone that I trusted. Then all of sudden your torch is snuffed, you have to turn around and sit on the bench, as they’re all exiting and look in the eyes everyone who just betrayed you. It was hard, and then to top it off, you have to sit there and all of a sudden be in juror mode and have everyone walk in and see that you just got voted out. All you want to do is go process things and decompress and maybe even cry or whatever you need to do, and then on top of that, I have to watch my fellow alliance member Michael get voted out too. So it was a hard night.
On dealing with his popularity on the show:
Michael Yerger: The love has been amazing, I’m absolutely humbled and taken aback by the response. I’m so, so happy and grateful that I got to play the game. I’m proud of my game. It’s just been really nice having the Survivor community, which I’ve been a part of and a fan of for so long, you know it really is just full-circle for me as a fan and I just couldn’t be more thankful and pleased.
On lying about his age:
Michael: You know, it’s a hard call. People can see youth as a good thing and they could say, oh he’s just a kid let’s keep him around. Or they could just not take me seriously and think that I’m just naive to a sense. So that definitely could have worked for or against me but at the same time, I’m not wanting to play the game unless I have a good shot of winning and I don’t want people to not take me seriously or just discount everything. So going in I just wanted to maintain the credibility, I just wanted to be a normal guy, a normal player, without any preconceived notions that I would be different or would stick out for any reason. So I just wanted to clear the table immediately, and just keep that on the back-burner and use it if I needed to. I didn’t know what the cast was like, I didn’t know how they’d feel, or if they’d feel insulted, I just had to judge that and if I had made it to Final Tribal I still wouldn’t even be able to tell you right now what I would have done, whether I would have revealed it or would have maintained that lie. But I’m pleased with the decision I made and I definitely think it helped me, just looking at the game thus far.
For much more from Jenna and Michael, including my full interviews, please listen to the latest episode of the FilmSurvivor Podcast below or by clicking here.
TELL US: WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT JENNA’S ELIMINATION? WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON MICHAEL’S?
Photo Credit: CBS/Monty Brinton/Robert Voets/Timothy Kuratek/Jeffrey Neira/Michele Crowe