‘Survivor’ Host Jeff Probst Weighs In on Upcoming Immunity Decision

by Jennifer Shea

This season of “Survivor” is full of twists and turns. And “Survivor” host Jeff Probst recently weighed in on one of them.

Here’s what happened: Erika Casupanan, one of the contestants, had a stroke of bad luck when she drew a hand that forced her to sit out, then allowed her tribe to exile her. But once again, this season, “Survivor” producers are looking to make things complicated. So they threw in a catch.

The non-exiled players had been forced to compete for a shot at the merge feast and blanket immunity. The winners got the feast and immunity, and the losers had to compete individually for immunity in a musical-chairs-like game that guarantees one of them will be voted out. After the teams engaged in that competition, Erika got the option to switch the results of the immunity challenge and take immunity out of the hands of her former tribe, who had won the challenge, giving it to herself and the other team instead.

‘Survivor’ Host Explains Erika’s New Calculus

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly this month, Probst noted that Erika was facing a different calculus than, say, Danny, and she might be more likely to go for broke and shatter the hourglass, wrecking any former alliances she had with her team.

“In Erika’s situation, going into the challenge she appears to be on the outs with her tribe,” Probst said. “Then in a random draw of rocks, she drew one of the two rocks that forced her to sit out, which left her fate in the hands of others. They sent her to Exile, and now she has power in the game. So her decision will be based on that specific set of circumstances. Does she feel she can recover with her tribe by protecting them? Or does she go for broke, knowing that if she changes history her former tribe will be gunning for her from now on?”

“My decision would be based on where I felt I stood in the game and my long-term plans for the people in my alliance,” he added. “I’m not saying I wouldn’t make a big move and shatter the hourglass, but it would only be after considering things like alliances and potential jury votes.”

Probst Says COVID Hiatus Caused Him to Forget How to Yell Properly

On a somewhat lighter note, Probst also admitted he has not been immune to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Specifically, the show’s coronavirus-induced hiatus made him forget how to yell without hurting his voice.

“Yeah, this is embarrassing,” Probst told EW. “I think my ANNOYING YELLING!!! is simply the result of me being away from ‘Survivor’ for too long during COVID. I forgot how to yell properly. It’s that simple. It is possible to be excited and full of adrenaline and still not lose your voice. Rookie mistake. I blame only myself.”

While Probst may be a little hoarse this season, that won’t stop him from instigating all sorts of “dangerous fun,” he says. And viewers can tune in to catch it on CBS Wednesdays at 8 ET.