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Category: Survivor

Survivor: Borneo (Season 1)

This post is part of a series that contain
for the CBS Television show Survivor

My journey with Survivor began with Season Two and it took me several years to come back around to Season One when I was able to catch up through the magic of Tivo.

Unfortunately, this season is hard to rank against the rest of the show, for several reasons. The production was rough and most of what you would recognize as modern Survivor was not yet in place. Not to mention the fact that, even though this season had some interesting contestants, Richard Hatch made everything so uncomfortable all the time that it was hard to get through.

Many fell in love with Colleen Haskell, but since I started with Season 2, my heart already belonged to another (we’ll get to that in another post).

Since the show wasn’t really that great yet, much of what I recall from this season is the final tribal, where Susan delivered a speech that still ranks up there as one of the most dramatic in Survivor history.

Something I could have learned from this season, had I been watching it live, was to be ready for disappointment when it comes to the winner.

This season was undeniably the beginning of a cultural phenomenon which set the groundwork for one of the longest running reality TV shows ever and created a template for so many other shows to come. This makes Season One a must-watch for any completest, but one that can be skipped if you just want to experience the best of what Survivor has to offer.


I have been a Survivor fan longer than I have owned the domain name for this website. I watched my first episode in January 2001 when Season 2 premiered after the Super Bowl, which I swear I was only watching for the commercials. Jeff Probst was in the belly of an airplane, shouting at the camera as he often did in the early seasons. From the moment the plane landed and we met the 16 contestants, I was all in.

Since that time, I have not missed a single episode and have even seen many seasons two or three times! A friend recently started a private Facebook group for Survivor discussions and I now find myself discussing the show on a daily basis. We talk about old seasons, the current season, and the international versions of the show. From strategy, to villains, to who is “island hot,” the conversations are varied and always interesting.

As everyone in the group started to rank their favorite seasons, I realized that I needed to rewatch the entirety of the show to make my list. This is no simple task, considering the show has 37 English language seasons: 34 American, 1 South African, 1 Australian, and 1 New Zealand (some harder to find than others!). As I progress through each season, I am keeping detailed notes about what I like and dislike, which I will add as posts here. That way, when I reach the end of my rewatch, I should be able to put together my ranked list of seasons. If you are at all interested in the show, maybe this list will help you to determine which season to start with.

Check back here as I add my breakdown of each season: