After viewing the first few days of ‘Survivor India‘—and seeing the way the contestants looked—you’re likely to believe that this is not a reality show where the 22 contestants divided in two teams have easy access to food and other basics.
Rohit (Timmy) Narang tries out a datun.
Wrestler Sangram Singh tries out different stems or ‘datun’ to clean his teeth, and even convinces his teammates to use them the second day. All of them try in vain to light a fire by different means, including by the use of spectacle lenses. A good loo, and rightly so, is on the most-missed list. It is easy to see that there is not enough space in the self-erected shelters to accommodate all 11
contestants of a team—some of them spend nights on the beach with just leaves for a bed.
The two teams-Catan and Tayak.
The celebrity team Catan fares well in the beginning, but in a couple of days the camaraderie begins to ebb. On the other hand, the Tayak, the non-celebrity team, is at loggerheads from Day 1. Not being able to light the fire is their biggest failure because it leads to there being no food in the camp, save green coconuts. Obviously, none of them made use of the lessons dished out at the one-day camp at the Survivor training school. What is more surprising is that no one thinks about exploring the surrounding area to look for fruits or raw food other than
coconuts and that no one has bothered to train in advance about acquiring the most basic camping skill—lighting a fire without matches.
The tribal area where teams evict team mates.
The celebrity quotient is suspect. In which part of the world is hairstylist Sylvester Rodgers aka Sylvie, actor-cum-tarot reader Monisha Khatwani or wrestler Singh a celebrity? And why has the Indian hockey player Raj Rani been relegated to the non-celebrity team?
Differences between the young and old contestants creep in from Day 1 in both teams, with the younger lot unwilling to be led by the more experienced members. It is this conflict that
leads to the surprising elimination of the first contestant.
Shilpa Agnihotri enjoys her meal.
The format of the show is not explained clearly, and if you are not a ‘Survivor‘ fan, you’ll get into it only as the episodes unfold.
It is evident that actor Karan Patel, research scientist Michael, stylist Rishi Raj, party girl Preeti and model Gisele are the troublemakers. Actors Rajesh Khera and Priyanka Bassi are manipulators in the Catan team but the Tayak’s manipulators are yet to emerge. The group dynamics are made obvious from the word go—Michael and Gisele are best friends, restaurateur Rohit (Timmy) Narang and actor Shilpa Agnihorti become strategy buddies, Abhinav Shukla and Patel are chums who go fishing together and return empty-handed—a key to the success of any reality show, and the hook for audiences.
Contestants likely to hang in: stunt artiste Sanober Pardiwala, Bassi, Singh, Michael, Narang, Khera and Shukla.