ABCs new reality series “Castaways” on paper would appear to be a ripoff of CBS’ long-running reality competition show “Survivor” but apparent from the fact that people are stranded on an island, the shows could not be more different.
Castaways drops 12 people on a series of tiny islands in Indonesia separately from one another. It’s as if they were survivors of a ship wreck. They are dropped off in the ocean just offshore where they will find scattered supplies and luggage that may or may not be their own. They know that there are other contestants out there with them but they don’t know where they are or even how many others there are. It is up to each of them to decide to try to make it on their own or to seek out the other castaways.
There is no post like Jeff Probst on Survivor. There are no competitions or tribal councils to vote people off. Unlike the 39 day duration of Survivor, these participants have no idea how long they will be out there. You either survive to the end or you give up and they take you out of the game.It’s filmed documentary style and includes a peak at what the individuals lives are like in real life. It’s all about surviving and has nothing resembling the game show atmosphere of Survivor or Big Brother. I suppose if you were to compare it to any other reality show it would be more like Discovery Channel’s “Naked and Afraid” without the ridiculous nudity.
The participants in some cases bear little resemblance to the typical Survivor contestant. For example the first person we meet is a food addict who weighs 390 pounds. Another 61-year-old woman struggles to care for her parents who have Alzheimer’s. Others such as X military man, an aspiring Nashville singer, a crab fisherman, seemed to be the more typical Survivor types.
it’s probably too soon to tell just how compelling or entertaining series will be but it’s definitely worth checking out. You can catch it Tuesday nights on ABC at 10 PM. The first episode which is already aired is available on demand. For now I’m giving it a rating of “I’m watching it“