Each week, host Jeff Probst answers a few questions about the most recent episode of Survivor: Philippines.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: You know we’re about to talk all about that big smooch from Dawson, right? What were you thinking as she leaned in for the kiss, and what was your reaction after? Is your wife Lisa on your case about it?
JEFF PROBST: Honestly, it did take me by surprise. Nothing like that has ever happened. As I snuffed her torch I felt her really staring and connecting with me. It was as if she had already accepted her fate and was now looking for her goodbye from me. As she leaned in toward me I thought she was going to kiss me right on the lips. It was one of those moments that slowed way down as it was happening. Dawson is an “in the moment” girl and though I have no idea what she was thinking in that moment, I thought it was both fun and funny. Fortunately, my wife Lisa is not a terribly jealous person! (UPDATE: Hear Dawson’s take on the kiss here!)
EW: Look at you giving up your rain jacket to Dana after she bowed out! And to think they say chivalry is dead. You’ve made the distinction in the past between contestants that needed to be removed the game and some that maybe used illness as an excuse to bail early. What’s your take here with Dana?
PROBST: Dana was truly sick. Very sick. I felt awful for her because she was such a vibrant woman and was giving so much to the game and then she got walloped. It was just too much for her body. The distinction is that if medical says “you cannot go on any further” then they are pulled from the game. It never has to do with pain — it has to do with the condition being life threatening. So in Dana’s case the medical decision was “you can go further… if you can stand it.” She couldn’t. So technically she did quit, but I have to say that from what I saw, I would have done the same thing. She was in real pain.
EW: You made a few comments about Abi sitting out so many challenges. Is it time to revisit the rule that players are allowed to sit out consecutive challenges when they do not appear in the same episode cycle, and make participation in every other challenge mandatory?
PROBST: Perhaps, but I don’t know that it would change the game in any demonstrative way. The players adapt to the rules, whatever they are, and alliances tend to dictate strategy — but with the number of “one challenge episodes” growing, it is worth consideration. Thanks for the idea!
EW: This episode was double trouble for Kalabaw as they lost two members. What can you tell us about next week?
PROBST: Next week, another Survivor first! It happens at one of the following three points in the show: A.) Challenge B.) Tribe camp. C.) Tribal Council.
To watch an exclusive deleted scene from last night’s episode as well as our pre-game interviews with Dawson and Dana, simply click on the video player below. To read Dalton’s recap, click right here. And for more Survivor scoop, follow Dalton on Twitter @DaltonRoss.