The theme of the upcoming Survivor: Ghost Island (premiering Feb. 28 on CBS) is that new players can use old items from seasons past. And these items are not mere replicas, but the actual original items originally seen in their original season. That also means that the actual Ghost Island location will act as the first full fledged Survivor museum, with 82 different items (you can see the full list here) from yesteryear making their way back to the island.
“These are the real items and getting them was not always easy,” says host Jeff Probst. “When somebody opens up an idol or an advantage, they are going to be holding that exact idol that the player misplayed. So it could be as recently as last season and it could be as far back as a decade ago.” That means producers had to track down the items from various people and places since they first appeared, which brings up an interesting question: What happens to the items after the season is over? For instance, if Andrea Boehlke’s unused hidden immunity idol from Caramoan is used by a new player this season, who gets to keep it later?
We asked Probst exactly that and were assured that any newbies who come into possession of one of these relics will merely be borrowing it for the show. “We have made an agreement that all items will be returned to their original owner,” says Probst. And the host even wonders if the new players will want something that is allegedly cursed for that long. “I wouldn’t be surprised if somebody really bought into the theme and said ‘I’m not even sure I want this advantage,’” laughs the host.
But Probst is looking forward to seeing how these big fans react to getting to hold a piece of Survivor history. “The fun of this game is that we have people who grew up on it and are now playing it and they will be able to say ‘Oh my gosh, this is an actual relic — the real deal, not a replica, not a fake.’ And then the reality will set back in, which is, ‘I have it. What do I do with it? And I’ve got to play it correctly because now, more than ever, I’m aware that one bad decision can screw your game up.’” The only question in Survivor is… who will screw up first?
Check out the video above to see Probst talking about the Ghost Island items, and for a crazy amount of coverage of the upcoming season, check out our Survivor hub and follow me on Twitter @DaltonRoss.