Gina wins Alone Australia

Rewilding facilitator Gina Chick survives 67 days in the Tasmanian wilderness to take out SBS $250,000 prize.

Rewilding facilitator Gina Chick has won the first season of Alone Australia, surviving 67 days in the Western Tasmania / lutruwita wilderness.

After enduring nature, hunger, and loneliness, the 52-year-old outlasted nine other participants to win $250,000.

She outlasted vet and bush regenerator Mike, at 64 days. In the final episode Gina’s best friend Lee surprised her on location, for an emotional reunion.

“Coming into this experience, I said the Gina who walked in would not be the Gina that walked out. I left more windswept, more grateful, more in love than I’ve ever been in my life,” said Gina.

“For me, it was never about winning the competition. My focus was on solving my needs every day. I’m not an expert survivalist, but what I’ve found is that I can let my instincts and the land teach me what I needed to know. I really wanted to show that there is a way of being at home in the wild. There’s a way of connecting with an ancestral way of being that isn’t about dominating nature, or about having all the bells and whistles and tricks. I want to thank the palawa for the tens of thousands of years they’ve lived in harmony with this country, leaving footprints for me to follow.”

Even a series about wilderness survival touch upon First Nations connections, dealing with PTSD and reflecting on the loss of a child.

For Gina, who always seemed at one with nature, loneliness was a major factor.

“My soft human skin needs other humans to survive,” she said.

Mike was medically extracted at Day 64 -his birthday- after constructing camp traps, a rod and net and having a run of bad luck capturing food. But low blood pressure saw him extracted by the medical team.

“I feel really disappointed. Winning was very important to me for many reasons. I wanted to bring the money home for our family,” he said. “But I could not have tried any harder.”

“I came so close on so many things,” he added.

“But that is survival. A lot of it is luck.”

Michael was third placed, tapping out on Day 30, with a lack of food and time away from his family became too much.

“I just want to go home to my family healthy, and know that emotionally, I am done. I need them,” he said.

Alone Australia has been a massive hit for SBS, with five episodes now surpassing the one million viewers in VOZ data.

Kathryn Fink SBS’s Director of Television said: “Well done to Gina on surviving months alone in such a harsh environment, while inspiring so many around the country. We laughed and cried following her incredible journey, as well as those of the other courageous participants. Alone Australia has really captured the public imagination. It’s not only SBS’s highest rating series to date in 2023, but also our most successful ever original commission, in terms of total consumption. More than half of the episodes have now had a Total TV audience of more than one million viewers, with much of that being driven by SBS On Demand. The hit series demonstrates the strong shift to the multiplatform on-demand world that television is increasingly moving to.

“This is such a unique, multi-faceted and compelling show, and in an era where the battle for capturing the attention of audiences with new formats is so fierce, SBS is incredibly proud of how Alone Australia is proving to be a standout new hit series for Australian audiences.”

ITV Studios Australia CEO and Managing Director David Mott said: “My congratulations to Gina and to all our wonderful cast. ITV Studios is thrilled to have created a series that has redefined what success looks like in this multi-platform world we live in. My thanks to our passionate production team, format owners A&E and the unwavering support of SBS.”

Alone Australia: The Reunion hosted by Amanda Keller is now available at SBS On Demand and screens tonight, Thursday 25 May at 7.30pm on SBS.

15 Responses

  1. The show was compelling and fascinating, on physical, psychological, ethical and medical levels, and probably made us all question our individual ability to do what Gina – a kind-spirited, earth goddess and worthy winner – and all the participants achieved. (Although, I’m still unsure if Gina was medically extracted or if she tapped out on Day 67).
    Sadly, the “Reunion” show was almost a parody of the show’s concept. It trivialised much of what we’d seen and enjoyed over the series with it’s silly ‘Survivor-like’ tribal council feel. And, apart from a few questions and a tear or two, Amanda Keller was the wrong person to host this: it required a somewhat more circumspect, intellectual probing than the breakfast radio grabs she attempted to elicit. Maybe next season SBS should can the Reunion show, or show us how the contestants coped/readapted/reacquainted with heading back into their usual lives instead. Nevertheless, am looking forward to the next season.

    1. Gina won as “last person standing” – Mike was out for health reasons so she was the longest lasting participant (as she was still healthy). I just wonder how long she’d have gone on for?

      I agree that Amanda Keller was exactly the wrong person to host the Reunion – it deserved more seriousness than she allowed it. Whilst her schtick worked well on The Living Room, this was a different ball game. Definitely needs a more serious presenter who’s more aligned with the aims of the series next time round.

  2. Congratulations Gina! So glad that my favorite survival expert managed to take the money!

    What an incredible show Alone Australia has been! (just as good as the US series), definitely will be hard to beat in terms of the Best New Show of 2023. Can Season 2 hurry up and get here already!!!

  3. Maybe that clip is misrepresentative of the series but I thought they had to film themselves but that interview is clearly being filmed by someone else, so were crew sent in throughout to film the pieces to camera or was that just a ruse at the end to ensure that moment was filmed properly?

  4. You’re not to blame David, that was down to “The Age” this morning about 8 pages in, but I’m really upset at having this spoiled for me after watching from the start. I wasn’t home last night and recorded to watch tonight. Just … grrr. Been watching ‘Alone’ in all its flavours for some time now, and I’ve really enjoyed the Australian take on it. Took about 3.5 weeks (of recording time) before Gina hit her straps, but from there she became a clear favourite. I thought Mike had it in the bag and was cruising after the first couple of weeks.

    I know it’s probably too soon to tell, but if/when season 2 happens, are they remaining in Tassie or are they moving it around the place, as the US series has moved around various locations in Canada?

    1. Reported online elsewhere last night, but by me this morning. I usually try to wait for WA to see a broadcast, but not always possible when 3 hours behind a profile show. As a dedicated TV site ‘aired = news’ remains the strategy.

  5. I missed the first 2 or 3 episodes, but was hooked pretty quickly once I started watching. One of the best new shows of the year for me. I’m very happy for Gina, but I really feel for Mike, it’s a shame there’s no second prize. I couldn’t believe Mike’s tenacity, no matter what went wrong he just kept trying. I was amazed at how long he lasted with so little food.

  6. Have loved watching Alone Australia.
    Congratulations to Gina – such a wonderful, inspirational lady.
    Her and Mick definitely deserved to be the last two standing.
    Really felt for Mick when was forced to leave on his Birthday for Medical reasons – absolutely shattering for him.
    The Tassie backdrop was stunning but deeply bleak, dark and depressing at the same time.

  7. I got a bit teary when Mike’s dream was shattered, then full on cried when Gina’s was achieved. I was not expecting such an emotional ending. So in awe of them.

    [Note to producers: showing Gina gnawing on a ribcage in the opening of every episode was a bit of a spoiler].

  8. What a great and inspiring show. I loved that nest Gina built. And I loved the way the contestants opened themselves up to us emotionally. Big congratulationst to Gina.

  9. The show has been superb. I’ve run the full gamit of emotions with it. It’s made me laugh and cry and everything in between. Congrats to everyone involved in this wildly succesful production. Can’t wait for season 2.

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