An Update on ‘Survivor’ Seasons 41 and 42 Themes

The Yara tribe flag in Survivor: Winners at War

CBS The Yara tribe flag in Survivor: Winners at War

There’s new information about the themes for “Survivor” season 41 and “Survivor” season 42 — it sounds like the show might be doing away with themes, at least for the foreseeable future. Read on to find out what the show is doing moving forward and also how many castaways season 41 is expected to have.

‘Survivor’ Is Moving to Simple Titles of the Season Number

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According to Inside Survivor, sources close to the production say that instead of themes, “Survivor” is now simply going to be known as “Survivor 41,” “Survivor 42,” etc etc.

As the site points out — and it was our first thought as well — that makes a lot of sense when you think about it. The show has been filming in Fiji since season 33. The last season not to be filmed in Fiji was season 32, subtitled “Kaoh Rong.” Not coincidentally, it was also the last season to feature the location as part of the title — because they can’t keep inventing Fijian locations when they film in the same place all the time.

“Survivor: Fiji” was actually used back in season 14, back when the show jet-setted around the world and often used the locations as subtitles, only relying on themes for things like “all-stars,” “Heroes vs. Villains” and “Blood Vs. Water.”

But beginning in season 33, the show has used a “theme” subtitled for every single season and while some of them were great — we particularly liked “Game Changers” and “Winners at War” — some of them were kind of a stretch in terms of a quality theme and twist… we’re looking at you, “Edge of Extinction” and “Island of the Idols.”

So maybe “Survivor” is getting back to basics, using numbers for subtitles unless they have a meaty theme to use, like a “Heroes vs. Villains 2” or something. Either way, we think this is good news for the show. We want good game play and a good cast, not people the show is trying to shoe-horn into its pre-determined theme.

It Sounds Like ‘Survivor 41’ Will Have 18 Castaways

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In the same article, Inside Survivor reports that they’ve heard “Survivor 41,” which wrapped filming this month, will have 18 castaways divided into three tribes. This is also good news and here’s why.

The show has shortened its shooting schedule, according to a separate Inside Survivor report — instead of 39 days, it will now be between 26 and 29 days. But it is keeping the season episode count the same, at 14 episodes (the show has had 14 episodes per season for seven of the last eight seasons).

But with 14 episodes, if the cast only has 16 castaways, it would have one episode with no elimination. With 20 cast members, it would have three double eliminations, which is a lot. With 18, that’s the sweet spot — 13 eliminations over the first 12 episodes before the finale and reunion special, which are considered two separate episodes. That means one double elimination, which is fun as long as the show doesn’t get carried away with double eliminations.

“Survivor” is back in production now. If the pattern holds, it should be premiering its 41st season the third or fourth week of September 2021.

READ NEXT: How Long Will Jeff Probst Host ‘Survivor’?

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