'Survivor: Redemption Island': Jeff Probst picks his favorite new contestants and predicts the first one to get the boot -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

Image credit: Monty Brinton/CBS

Boston Rob and Russell may be getting most of the attention heading into the premiere of Survivor: Redemption Island this evening (especially with our exclusive joint interview), but there are 16 new contestants also vying for the million dollars. In this on-location chat taken just moments after the opening of the season, host Jeff Probst sizes up the cast, talking about some of the people he sees as potential standouts (including the person with the highest IQ of any contestant they’ve ever tested) while also predicting whom will be the first person booted out of the game. Get ready for tonight’s premiere by clicking on the video player below to see all the contestants Probst thinks you should keep an eye on, as well as the one who might not be around for long. And for more Survivor, follow me on Twitter @EWDaltonRoss.

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  • Jethro

    Although it was fun and cute to see Rob & Russell come back in past seasons, having to endure another round with the both of them is going to be painful.

    I know these kind of people make good TV, but enough is enough. I also know the show has to make changes enticing enough for us to watch, but I will sit this round out. Their accents alone are nerving anyway!

    • BJG

      I The redemptionisland ideas is good and I’m afraid it’ll be over shadowed by the too-soon Rob v Russell remach. I agree that they make good tv, but enough is enough with these two. Especially Russell who we’ve already seen twice in the past three seasons.

      • MCS

        I think that might be it. If only they had done this, maybe, five seasons after it would make sense.

      • Tami

        I can’t wait to watch the show!

    • Jon

      There is a bit of desperation in bringing them back. Last season was cast so horrendously (for the most part) that the producers seem to have lost their confidence they can put together a good group. They should be looking for the NEXT Russell, not bringing back him back over and over again.

      • sara


      • Snsetblaze

        Agreed. And if the producers have lost their confidence … its because they recruit actors and models mostly from California .. instead of look at those who actually apply (some of whom might not be as photogenic but may definitely be interesting).

      • Carol Burris

        I agree! I am so over Russell! I tape the show so I can specifically fast forward through his talks to the camera. I can’t even stand the sound of his voice! Vote him off already! If he wins, I will never watch this show again.

    • SLB

      Don’t Worry. Russell won’t be around for long, so it’ll actually be fun watching him brag what a great player he is, knowing he won’t even make it to the final three.

    • TheBestPlayer2NeverPlay

      It looks like Jeff will be leaving his blogs on his own website from now on Jeffprobst dot com.

  • Valentin

    This show has jumped the shark because of Probst and his love for manly guys.
    75 percent of the girls cast are only their for the eye candy

    • davemm

      And the problem with eye candy is?

  • BJG

    I hope Francesca isn’t just another “crazy black woman”. I’m tired of that character on Survivor.

    • Sam

      Thank you!

    • Meli

      Nor do we want to see ‘sit-around-on-her-butt-and-do-nothing-for-37-days black woman’, as in Vescepia and Cirie.

      • Carla in Houston

        That may be a valid comment about Vescepia, but Cirie actually played the game.

  • sara

    Huh? There are other people other than Rob and Russell?? They’ll probably give them a grand total of 5.7 minutes of airtime per episode. Combined.

  • Bea

    If these contestants have any smarts at all, the first person they vote out in both tribes is Rob and Russell.

    • Mole

      Except with the Redemption Island wrinkle, you’d only be sending them to a smaller island where they will decimate each individual that arrives there and then jump right back in the game at the end. More thought will be required when voting people off this year.

      • Juneau

        Rob will be able to come back from RI, but Russell is surprisingly bad at physical challenges.

    • davemm

      I don’t mind having Rob and Russell there, but I do think they should be playing a seprate game, which would mean 2 winners. Either Rob or Russel gets a million for who goes further in the game in which they can not be voted out until the merge, and then the winner of the game, picked from the new players. oh and by the way Rob and Russell playing winner take all

  • Lee

    What I’ve been missing from Survivor for the past couple years are strategic players. I mean, really strategic players. I think the last really good strategic player was Yul from the Cook Islands. Enough with this young and old business and Russell/Boston Rob marathon. What made Survivor great was a strategic player like Richard Hatch. It doesn’t need all these gimmicks and yes–I think Russell and Boston Rob are gimmicks!

    • Jerry

      Very well said! If they would do a better job of casting – based on ability, strategic instead of looks – then there wouldn’t be a need for “Rob vs Russell” part two.

      • Snsetblaze

        Well Russell certainly wasn’t cast for looks …

    • Meli

      You would’ve seen Jonathan Penner work his game on Heroes vs. Villains if his injury hadn’t forced an evacuation. But yes, Yul and Jonathan in Cook Islands were the last strategists on Survivor.

      • Doris

        Jonathan is one that I would have liked to have seen again. He should have had a second chance.

      • Meli

        Oops, I meant Fans vs. Favorites, not Heroes vs. Villians. Penner should’ve been on Heroes vs. Villians too. Then again he would’ve blown a gasket over the mental giants allowing Russell to stay in the game. *snicker*

  • Jim

    This is the stupidest thing i’ve ever read. Of course he knows who going home each step of the way he was there. Oh but he’ll pretend he’s a viewer or something?

    • Juneau

      That interview with Probst was taped before they started.

  • will

    have quit Survivor with all the “retreads”. Prost love affair with Boston Rob is awful. May return when they begin with ALL NEW people

  • lisa

    Yeah!!!! Russell is back, and hope he wins, best player ever!!!

  • Russell is a skunk

    If Boston 7 Russell aren’t booted the first chance there is every contestant should be classified as a retard…

    • sara

      Oh you can bet that the producers have fixed it so they can’t be voted out early. Clearly the Rob and Russell Show is their priority here, not the game of Survivor.

  • hal

    I am not sure Jeff calls ALL the shots. To some extent he has to play the cards as they come to him. Look at his predictions for the last episode. Not the way to bet. Have a rum, sit back and enjoy the scenery.

  • bri

    yeah russals back!!!!!! go russel!!

  • Jim

    Is there no end to the excrement that is Boston Rob? So what if he’s an extreme A-hole? If you were to meet him in your neighborhood, he’s the neighbor you whose house you’d egg because you just can’t stand him. He’s the loudmouth whom you’d call the cops on for blaring his stereo past 10 PM. SURVIVOR needs to be voted off the television island and Rob’s the very reason the torch needs blowing out…

  • pat

    I just watched the first half hour of the survivor redemption island and cannot watch anymore and will not..I cannot stand Russle,,he makes me sick just to look at him let alone listen..I will not be watching this season…what were they thinking bringing him back…ugh!!!

  • CATS

    You know I really like this show and have watched almost every season but I think they need to add some cats cats would make a good add on to it and more people would watch for the cats and not the girls and instead of 1 million dollars give em 2 million a Ferrari and a cat and maybe a toy that vibrates

    Oh ya that’s right get it in there


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