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Survivor Fodder

Survivor 15: Pre-game!

Survivor is back tomorrow night and I don't know what to make of it. The only hook so far seems to be that they are in China, which is kinda cool, but it's not like we're at war with China or anything and it's more like one more instance of taking our business to China. They're playing up the Great Wall and the Spiritual Mountain, but they're still gonna have to run a ropes course and stand awkwardly for a long time, etc. So what I'm trying to say is that Survivor is not about the locale or the twists (although they can be interesting and very cool), it is about the people. So let's meet the people, and hope that maybe one of them learned how to make fire in the last eight months.

Aaron Reisberger:
is a surfing instructor in Hawaii originally from Venice, CA, but he loves to cook and thinks that it will be good for his game that he can make things taste edible. Well, first of all, his last name sounds like something you would have to eat in ancient China, and it might just be tasty. I don't know what Aaron is planning on using to make food taste better unless he brought some Cumin with him as his personal item, but we'll see. He describes himself as sometimes being too nice, so he might wear on my nerves or he might become cuddle-buddies with all the women. I'm guessing we see this guy shirtless more than I'd like.

Amanda Kimmel: is a hiking guide from Los Angeles, but has been living in Montana. She modeled and was Miss Montana USA in 2005 and Miss Earth in 2006 which sounds promising, but much like the Sim Earth game, is probably not nearly as cool as one might hope. She DOES do a ton of athletic hobbies like rock climbing and volleyball and hiking, so maybe she'll be the strong woman who can give a team the edge. She posed on the Great Wall in five-inch heals for a tourism spot, so she's been to China before and will probably talk about it. She gets big "potential dark horse winner" points for her favorite cereal being Grape Nuts and her favorite football team being the GB Packers. I'm guessing we see this woman shirtless less than I'd like.

Ashley Massaro: Just kidding, Amanda, Ashley is gonna eff you up. Ashley is a WWE wrestler and has been for a bit. Nothing else about her particularly matters because she is a WWE WRESTLER and should easily have the most grit and acting abilities. She could be hot-headed though and that would get her in trouble fast. Some people might end up feeling intimidated by her strong female independent presence in which case she could go early, but if she makes it a week, she'll make it far. She also won some pageants. I'm guessing we see this woman shirtless exactly as much as she wants us to "or else."

Steve "Chicken" Morris: No nickname is going to be anywhere near as good as Dreamz (or actual name), or Rocky, so why even bother? Chicken is a chicken farmer (the good kind, where they treat "˜em right nice) in Virginia. He's 47, but might have some fight left in him. His favorite movie is The Outlaw Josie Wales, so he might have some cool left in him too. We'll find out. I'm guessing we see this guy's chest hair QUITE A BIT.

Courtney Yates: is my girl. She was born in Boston and has been working in NYC as a waitress. She is a die hard Red Sox fan (as perhaps you'll find out I am) and has worked as a historical costumed guide in Salem, Mass! She's apparently (from the bio) very skinny but not anorexic like some people think, so I'm not sure how well she'll fare in the challenges where physicality are required (and let's be honest, 90% of the time, it is), but she might make it through on personality and strategy if she doesn't come off "a little bitchy" like she says.

Dave Cruser: is kind of a stereotype. First of all, his name is Cruser and he's like a thirty-seven year old bartender with Desperate Housewives good looks. He used to work in construction, but also advertising and modeling. He's traveled all over the world and loves to camp. We'll see how Dave Cruser does, but I get the feeling if you ask Dave Cruser, Dave Cruser's always doing pretty alright.

Denise Martin: is an enigma wrapped in an enigma wrapped in prosciutto. She is a 40 year old lunch lady who rides her scooter to work! oh, but she's also a second degree black belt! She went to tech school and fixed people's video game systems for money, but she also collects Budweiser memorabilia. She has three daughters that she enjoys playing with, but she also enjoys AX AND KNIFE THROWING and stick fighting. She's a big Red Sox fan too, being from Revere, Mass, so throw her in the mix for one of my favorite characters and potential players if she doesn't do something INSANE to get herself kicked out early (or first).

Erik Huffman: is a 26 year old South Carolinian. He won some spelling bee competitions when he was younger, and also models. Now, however, he is in the band FLOREZ(?) which has apparently had their song "Natalie" on Scrubs. So that's kinda cool. I bet he's a big d-bag in a "overly nice" kind of way, and I'm betting I won't like him, but some of you might. Not that you're d-bags! .or like d-bags! but! .I need way out of this hole--

James Clement: Going out of alpha order for the sake of a segue, James Clement is a gravedigger and could probably dig me out of and into a hole. He's 30 years old from Lafayette, LA, and is my pick for top challenge performer. He enjoys sprinting, weightlifting, and playing football, and also looks a little like Seal in his picture.

Michael "Frosti" Zernow: could be the potentially coolest player. He is half Japanese, half Russian (which is just an interesting combo), and is a Parkour athlete and student. From what I can gather, Parkour is that cool stuff in commercials where the guy jumps around from one thing to the next and runs up walls and stuff. It is "free-running" and using your environment like a jungle gym. Pretty cool and useful stuff. He's 20 and a little crazy sounding, so we'll see where it takes him.

Jaime Dugan: other than the placement of "I" in her name, Jaime doesn't have any outstanding traits just yet. She is a student at the U. of South Carolina- Columbia, and does some kickboxing. She likes some pretty basic things like Mario Kart and Legally Blond. We'll see what turns up with Jaime.
Jean-Robert Bellande: is a 36 year old professional poker player built like a pro wrestler. And he's really into poker. He's won a ton of money and has done some successful business ventures too, so he has a strong mind. Although, if he could bring three non-survival items with him to the location, he said "a deck of cards, poker chips, and a dealer," which is kinda funny in a pigeon-holing kind of way, but why the dealer? Who DOESN'T know how to deal a poker hand, or who can't be taught in like five minutes? He SHOULD have selected his favorite drink "vodka/redbull" because he won't have that to pump him up and his heart might no longer function without it.

Leslie Nease: is a 38 year old from South Carolina. You'll notice I've held back any "racist" or "anti-semetic" South Carolina comments for the previous two residents, but finally I can be let out of the cage--Leslie is a Christian Radio Talk Show Host. Being a Christian Radio Talk Show Host is not innately bad, so please don't think I mean that--but being a Christian Radio Talk Show Host in one of the most demonstratedly racist, anti-semetic states in the union is typically not going to be a very accepting or encouraging program. Her other hobbies include working out and bodybuilding and in her free time she camps and reads scripture. She's pretty much a character out of Donnie Darko or I Heart Huckabees. She makes me nervous. But as they say, "Do not judge lest ye be inundated with angry reader-mail." Although at this point, reader mail would be awesome, hate mail or otherwise.

Peih-Gee Law: is a 29 year old woman with a lot of life experience. She was a dancer and has been in Daft Punk, Madonna, Crystal Method videos, but she's also traveled around the world including living in the woods with no running water or electricity and backpacking through Thailand. She has traveled through Southeast Asia, and I'm wondering if her being born in Hong Kong and being Asian will effect the way she interacts with any locals they bring into play (more so how they interact with her the same way the native tribes acted with Earl and Dreamz). Peih-Gee is ready to show me something, and I pick her for another dark horse candidate.

Sherea Lloyd: freaks me out because she's like a 26 year old version of Cherie from last season (two seasons ago?). She is an elementary school teacher in Atlanta, and is extremely competitive. Her favorite activities DO include swimming, but walking is the other one and since there isn't too much water potentially around, swimming might not be as important as! say! .being able to run up walls and know karate.

Todd Herzog: doesn't just have a name that rhymes, he also has some game. Todd is a 22 year old gay Mormon from Utah, who is currently a flight attendant. He says he has great social skills, is very positive and is willing to "gather wood and sh*t." I don't know why, but I like him. He'll either last for a while or will be out early before anyone has a chance to really know him. He also enjoys the "Whatchamacallit" bar which nobody has eaten since 1973.

ALRIGHT! Those are our Survivors for this 15th season. We shall see tomorrow night if China is a grand background for the ensemble cast that will grow smaller by the week. My pick right now for Sole Survivor is either James or Dave, but only time will tell. I'll be posting by Friday night and remember, I'm on the west coast, so everything's happening a little later for me. Please make comments and start conversations. I want this season to be interactive and chock full o' participatory goodness. Let the game begin.


P.S. They have a Survivor Fantasy Game on now that could actually be kinda fun. I have setup a semi-private league for anyone who wants to join and play. You basically choose 4 survivors each week and they earn points for doing different things. The league ID is "" and the password is "tvfodder". Join up, it should be a lot of fun.

All info taken from

Posted by jon on September 19, 2007 2:19 PM
Permalink |

If you're going to accuse people of antisemitism on the basis of no evidence whatsoever, perhaps you could at least spell it correctly. Youall some kinda Yankee-boy? Or, I guess, more precisely, Redsox boy? What's with the South Carolina dis? We North Carolingians gotta stick up for our lil' sisses and bros.

Looking forward to a new survivor season.

1. Posted by: Cecil Rose at September 20, 2007 10:07 AM

You are right Cecil-- I apologize. Not for my spelling, which tends to trail after writing contestant bio's for hours, but for my quick accusation. I don't really think Leslie is racist, it was more of a joke, but we'll see once the season gets started. Plus, I have my little disclaimer at the end (don't judge lest ye receive angry reader email), which is great that I actually got.

I'm actually a little surprised that North Carolina and South Carolina are buds. I would think rivals. Anyway, if you're upset about the whole premise, then I don't actually believe you've been to South Carolina or read any history. South Carolina, while much better than it used to be, is still one of the more discriminatory states in the nation. I don't feel the need to recount my own personal stories or those of people I know, but it's still not spectacular. Anyway, I am sorry if that offended you, and I'll try and keep the blatant stereotyping to a minimum, but remember it's all in fun and 90% of this show (and reality tv) is stereotyping and having those stereotypes broken. We don't really know these people, they're just showing us what they want us to see on a weekly basis.

Willywood Whaaaat?,

2. Posted by: Witz at September 20, 2007 12:20 PM

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