Survivor. Best. Meltdown. Ever.

2013-03-14_2110Talk about going troppo…

Survivor: Fans vs Favourites just reminded me why it is still the grand-daddy of Reality shows.

Last night’s meltdown by Brandon Hantz was dynamite television.

Hantz had been stewing in fury at self-appointed / secret agent Phillip until he let rip at camp. Hantz threw his tribe’s rice on the ground in a moment of destruction, but that was only a taste of what was to come.

At the Immunity challenge, Corrine stepped forward to say the Favourites would forfeit immunity so they could go to Tribal Council.

But Hantz was not going quietly. He fell on his sword in a tirade of abuse directed at Phillip, a hefty amount saved for his own tribe and some free insight for the Fans.

Hantz was insulting and relentless and it was car-crash TV.

Host Jeff Probst finally stepped in (that’s what hosts do) to calm the situation by asking Hantz to join him on neutral ground. Presumably this was a tactical move to avoid any immediate violence.

Hantz continued his tirade, telling Phillip his stupid “Stealth R Us”names for everybody were ridiculous (no disagreement, there) and that he did not bite the hand that feeds him.

“Shut your mouth, shut your mouth bitch,” Hantz yelled.

By now Probst had begun giving Hantz a back-rub in an effort to calm him down. The Survivor editors were madly pixellating plenty of Hantz’s mouths to try and hide the expletives.

But the anger kept up to the point of Andrea breaking down in tears and Dawn breathing deeply to deal with the stress.

Phillip’s mention of the Hantz family wasn’t helpful.

“You bring my kids into this?” yelled Hantz. “I’ll come over there and knock your f***ing head off! Bring my kids into this, bitch!”

The rival team, the Fans, were awe-struck by the whole thing, in part at the floorshow that was going on and because they were automatically being handed Immunity.

Eventually Probst ruled that there would be no challenge, and Tribal Council for the Favourites was already underway. Whilst still giving Hantz a back-rub he asked the Favourites to vote, verbally rather than by secret ballot. With that Hantz was voted out and happy to walk.

The moment will probably go down in Survivor history as its biggest meltdown (and that’s saying something).

The sad thing is we’ll presumably never get to see Hantz play again because there is no way he would ever want to return.

And there’s definitely no way Producers would ever let him.

Best stuff begins at 3:36.

Post show interview.

18 Comments:

  1. carolemorrissey

    Yeah, I read the interview with Jeff too where he was asked about Brandon coming back. He said the psychologist said he was ok to do it. And I listened to an interview with Brandon today where he said he would like to do it again, but I don’t think they will let him. He starts the interview with ‘you’re welcome’.

  2. Courtney Yates made an impromptu appearance on Rob Cesternino’s Rob Has a Podcast this week and cheekily said she would’ve voted for someone else in that situation. Typical Courtney, but that would’ve hilarious and also would’ve defused the tension.

  3. I read an interview with Jeff before the series started that indicated Brandon had been cleared by the phychologist to appear. Clearly, they never watched the last season he was on. It was clear from day 1 that this was coming, it was only a matter of when!

  4. I think it was great television! I have not missed a survivor episode in 26 seasons and relive them all on DVD over and over! And it is without a doubt the biggest meltdown! I had some questions over the Favourites that were casted this season! Was only really keen to see Corinne (who can forget her nasty final speech to Sugar in Gabon) Brenda (she’s no mastermind flirt like Parvati, but that girl still got game) and I also knew Phillip and Brandon would make great TV and they certainly did!

  5. Between Brandon and Shamar the psychological screener on the show needs to be fired.

    I’m with faystar – this wasn’t entertainment, it was exploitation.

  6. Loved it.

    I love every episode of Survivor, but that was just awesome! It took me all the way back to season 1 when Susan Hawk went on the Rat & Snake rant at Kelly.

    Brandon what a legend, crazy but so entertaining. Pity they didn’t see that the real cause of the friction in the tribe was Phillip & his craziness & they had the opportunity to kick him out of the game. That would have been brilliant, best blindside ever! Loved that he called out Phillip on all the ‘stealth r us’ crap & Boston Rob dragging his sorry butt thru the finals, knowing he was not gonna get votes, the guy is delusional.

    Jeff handled the Brandon meltdown beautifully. I don’t think anyone in the tribe other than Phillip was threatened at all. I think they should have placed Brandon on the other tribe to cool off.

    @ Faystar you are a killjoy.

  7. Oh. My. God. This was reality tv at its brilliant best. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing and felt like I had experience something truly dramatic – a state too infrequently felt watching drama.

    And Probst was amazing. It was oddly emotional, moving and very strange.

  8. Sorry David, but I gotta be a killjoy on this one.

    You won’t find a bigger Survivor fan than me, but I gotta say that the whole Brandon meltdown veered into “sleaze tv” in my opinion.
    This guy is clearly mentally unstable, schizophrenic even. Watching him act out may have given us a voyeuristic thrill to watch from the couch initially, but I just don’t feel right about seeing a sick kid like that being poked and prodded. Think of his family, his kids. He needs serious help, not a legion of fans cheering him on.

    Some are saying Jeff handled it well, and to a degree he did quell the tension, but if he was to handle it responsibly, he should have stopped the cameras and got Brandon proper counseling instead of pushing the issue more and more.

    I love Survivor, but I just don’t think this is what the show is about. It wasn’t fun, it was kinda sad to watch. I think the producers were irresponsible putting him on the show in the first place…and I’m not just talking about this season.

    But hey, maybe I’m just a killjoy. It’s reality tv after all. A human beings personal crisis is what we crave on these shows. But where is the line drawn?

    • Duty of care is always a concern. Looking at the situation I suspect there was more danger in the beach scenes when it would have only been a small camera crew present. At the challenge there would have been a much bigger production crew in attendance to prevent violence, and Probst worked it like a hostage negotiator anyway.

  9. Brandon really did seem pshycotic. The others in his team seemed genuienly fearful. I wouldn’t think it safe to have him on again. One thing, were most of the guys when he was having his melt down at the camp? Only one of the frailer guys tried to stop him near the end.

  10. I would love him to return, along with his Uncle Russell on opposing tribes.

    Yes Russell was evil, but he followed the Survivor motto down to a tee, at the end of the day, no matter what you think of him, he was smart. He outwitted, outplayed and (almost) outlasted the remainder of the contestants.

    Brandon absolutely hated Philip, a bit like Russell and Boston Rob in Heroes vs Villains.

    This just shows that Survivor after 26 seasons is still the undisputed best reality TV show on the planet, and prehaps the ultimate one. Sure it might be scripted but boy do they cast well, the challenges are interesting amoung other things.

  11. It was unbelievable. There’s been tantrums before, but this was nothing we’ve seen before. I’m team Brandon on this, Philiip is a complete moron. Hope he goes soon.
    And it’s moments like this why Survivor needs to be fast tracked, so good on GO for actually fast-tracking. Shame Nine has screwed Survivor that it has to be on GO with so few viewers.

    And kudos Probst. He handled it brilliantly. Moving Brandon over to him, the back rub, the tribal on the spot. Probst is the man. How the hell he keeps getting snubbed for an Emmy is a disgrace.

  12. bettestreep2008

    Thanks to the rotten MKR, I kept wondering if the meltdown was staged or scripted.

    The more I watched Hantz the more I kept thinking – is this for real?

    As for the producers never wanting to see Hantz on Survivor again – this made great train wreck television and they would dearly love to have him and his nasty Uncle Russell come back for one more time.

    It’s about ratings you know.

  13. carolemorrissey

    Yeah, it was certainly a cracker. The looks on the fans faces was priceless, they couldn’t believe it. But I don’t know if that’s how you really want to get immunity. And we missed out on the challenge.

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