'Survivor: Cagayan': Jeff Probst says the Brains tribe 'was so bad it was kind of funny'
Each week, host Jeff Probst will answer a few questions about the latest episode of ‘Survivor: Cagayan.’
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: First question, Jeff, and this one comes courtesy of Alexis: Does, like, the rooster have to get it on with one of the hens to make eggs?
JEFF PROBST: Given I’m from Kansas, I should know this and I think I do. The answer is no, hens do not need roosters to lay eggs. But I see why so many people think so — it would seem to make sense. But the truth is, hens lay eggs whether there is a rooster around or not. But if you want baby chicks, then you need the rooster to fertilize the egg. Did I get it right?
EW: Bingo! Now, you know me, Jeff: There is nothing in the world I hate more than throwing a challenge. So stupid on so many levels. What is your philosophy on that? And just how bad was the Brains tribe in this immunity competition if the Brawn tribe was TRYING to lose and still couldn’t?
PROBST: I used to think it was always a bad idea to throw a challenge, but I’ve begun to shift my thinking a little bit. I think the key question you must ask yourself is, why are you throwing the challenge? If it’s because you think someone may be a threat later in the game and so you want to get rid of them now while you can, that’s probably a bad idea. But if there is a consensus that losing one specific person would actually make the tribe stronger, then I could see it possibly making sense. My shift in thinking comes from the gray that is slowly growing in my hair. The older I get the more I realize I would only play this game to win. Just win. And there is zero doubt that winning requires the brass to make some bold moves. A good strategic thinker could make a case that losing a specific person was their best move — a big one for sure, but a smart one. But I think the rationale of the brawn tribe was suspect. I think they were just frustrated with each other and wanted to make something happen. It was certainly funny watching a tribe trying to throw a challenge but unable to — because the other tribe was still worse! The brain tribe was awful in that challenge. It was so bad it was kind of funny. I will offer up that when you’re not comfortable in the water, it’s not easy to tread water and swim after odd shaped “balls” and then toss them from the water to another tribe mate waiting on a platform. The challenge was definitely exhausting. But without Spencer they had no chance. Speaking of which, how fun was that final showdown? The former NBA superstar vs the college nerd. It was David and Goliath and I thought David (Spencer) did pretty well!
EW: Tasha and Kass had to choose between keeping someone more likely to be loyal (J’Tia) or someone more likely to help them win challenges (Spencer). The lingering possibility of an impending tribe shake-up — which we then saw in the preview for next week — hung over this decision, but what would you have done?
PROBST: Easiest decision of the game. J’Tia has to go. You throw out my rice, you’re gone. I can’t ever trust you. Never. Trust is key. Yes, Spencer may flip, but flipping is part of the game. But throwing out the rice? I can’t believe they didn’t vote her out last time. Nuts.
EW: Going back to the blindfolded reward challenge, you seemed to have those posts lined up exactly at crotch level for maximum impact. Why do that to those poor bastards, Jeff? And why is watching people get hit in the groin never not funny?
PROBST: Wow, I hadn’t noticed that about the height thing. Hmm… I guess it just musta been a weird coincidence that just happened to play in our favor. You pick up on so many great details. I will make note of it though for next time. Although it might be related to construction — meaning maybe we have to pound the posts into the ground and that’s just the height they have to be at and that height just happens to match the average height of a human’s groin. Now that I think more about it, that’s probably it. As for why it’s always funny, well that’s easy. It dates back to fifth grade when “getting racked” seemed to be a daily occurrence; at least it was for me. It brings back all those great memories. Those were the days….
EW: Okay, tribe switcheroo time! Tease us up for next week, sir!
PROBST: Ah, tribe switches are always so fun. We love doing them randomly so we never know what we’ll get. For one person the switch is just about the worst thing that could happen. That’s when Survivor “luck” really sucks.