Survivor is ten years and twenty seasons old, so what better way to celebrate than to bring back twenty past contestants, many of whom we're seeing for the third freaking time? And they've been divided into two tribes: the "Heroes" (which has Cirie and Sugar in its ranks for some reason) and the "Villains" (with Douche, who, while detestable, was more of a stupid and self-deluded hypocrite in his season than he was a villain). They chat with Probst on the beach before heading into their first reward challenge, in which there is a lot of wrestling and boobs a-flyin' before the Heroes win flint -- though at the cost of injuries to Stephanie (who endures her dislocated shoulder like a freaking champ) and Rupert (who whines about his tiny little broken toe for the rest of the episode), along with Sugar's bra, which is ripped off by Sandra. When the Heroes catch some "wild" chickens roaming around their camp, they think they've got this entire game made. But the Villains are doing just fine at their camp, with Rob there to school them all in fire-making without flint, Douche and Jerri cozying up to each other in an unlikely and sick-making love match, and Li'l Russell playing the same camera-hogging useless game he played last season. They come from behind to win the immunity challenge, thanks to the Heroes' wise decision to put the four idiots in their tribe on puzzle-solving duty. Back at Hero camp, the group consensus on who to vote out appears to be between Sugar (who cries all the time and is generally useless), Amanda (who has proven in her two previous appearances that she knows how to play this game), and Cirie (ditto) until the votes are read and Sugar is unanimously chosen to leave the game, her time in it as much of a blur as she was when she finished the reward challenge with no top and two middle fingers.
Can you believe it's been 10 years since this show premiered and then patted itself on the back for creating the reality TV genre that was actually around for quite some time before? That's 10 years since Jeff Probst was only known as the guy who hosted that lame Rock and Roll Jeopardy show on VH1. 10 years since the world first knew that homosexuals and Navy SEALS could bond over their shared hatred of everyone else. And 8 years since this show was cool. How the world has changed in those 10 years! And yet, this show has remained pretty much the same. Case in point: we're celebrating 10 years and 20 seasons of Survivor with a bunch of contestants we've seen before -- in many cases more than once -- many of whom we were hoping never to see again. Case in point in point: here's Probst, who greets us with various sites of the South Pacific that have been featured on past Survivor seasons. Because nothing says you're pulling out the stops and going all-out on a 20th season like recycled footage! Probst claims that Survivor is "the most difficult" and "groundbreaking" show on TV. I'm sure that neither of those statements are true.
And here come helicopters full of Survivor contestants past! Yes, there's the stupid dragon tattoo of Coach "Douche" Wade, who I really thought I was rid of forever. And there's the tie-dyed shirt of Rupert, who I was hoping I'd never have to deal with in the first place. Oh, and there's Parvati, making her third freaking appearance on this show. I like Parvati and all, but I don't understand why she and some other contestants are on this show for a third time when there are plenty of other awesome past contestants who haven't gotten to come back for a second. Like Twila. But Probst claims that these contestants are 10 of our "favorite heroes" and 10 of "the most notorious villains." Um, what are Cirie and Sugar doing on the "heroes" side? And why is Douche in the "villain" tribe? He thought he was the most honest and true hero in his entire season, maybe in the history of the game. It wasn't true, but still. I see they've put Racist Randy back on the show, which pleases me only because he got to come back as a "notorious villain" and not Corrine. Rupert gets the first interview, saying "in my world, I've always tried to show that good will win." I wish he'd try to show us that it's possible to keep a beard neatly trimmed or wear something besides tie-dye. Li'l Russell kicks off what is sure to be copious amounts of camera time for him by saying he's proud to be a villain because villains are smart, and you can Google that fact if you don't believe it. Because the internet is all about honest-to-god true facts. Like how I, Sara Morrison, am a 5'11" supermodel with a Ph.D in astrophysics and an Oscar. Google it! It's there now!
J.T. claims that he's happy to be on the side of the heroes because he considers himself to be one, even though on his own season he had no problem lying to Douche and stabbing him in the back. Also Taj. Let's be real here: there are no heroes on this show. This whole concept is dumb. Jerri's back, and she has a sense of humor about herself and her place in this show's history. I actually met Jerri once right after the All-Stars season and she was really nice. So I'm rooting for her. Douche promises that he's going to "slay everyone" and "trust no one." "Hero" Tom starts off by saying he's not in the same shape he was last time and hopes he'll be able to keep up with his tribemates. Thanks for the low expectations, Tom! But you're still in better shape than, say, Rupert, so don't sweat it too much. Rob interviews that his tribe should get rid of him as soon as possible, but probably won't. "They never do," he sighs, somewhat sadly. Ha! Rob is only here for the free vacation from his wife and child. Sandra, who is on the Villains tribe despite being a hero in her season in that she: a. was awesome; b. was in an alliance with the beam of shining light that is Rupert, and c. won instead of sourface Lill or the guy who lied about his grandma being dead. But I guess since she swore a lot, she's a villain. Whatever. She says she's ready, willing, and able to be even meaner than she was in her first season. "I'll lie, I don't care. But I'll make up a good lie," she promises. Sandra rules. Meanwhile, Cirie finds it funny that she's on the Heroes tribe. "I'm a gangsta in an Oprah suit!" she says. And with that, Probst does his usual dramatic stance on some rocks near the ocean and says "39 days, 20 people, 1 survivor!"