One popular “Survivor” castaway recently confessed that the show was so hard on her that it pushed her over the edge when she was done filming. Jessica “Sugar” Kiper competed on “Survivor” twice and “Heroes vs. Villains” left her in a bad place — so much so that she really struggled after coming home. Read on to find out why and how she thinks the show is profiting off of people’s pain, plus her thoughts on the changes coming to the new season.
Kiper Said She Has Gone Through ‘Tremendous Growth’ Since Being on The Show
In an interview with Inside Survivor, Kiper said that she has experienced “tremendous growth” since playing “Survivor” twice — but her growth was not because of being on “Survivor,” it was despite being on “Survivor.”
“I’ve gone through tremendous growth since ‘Survivor’ 17 & 20, but I don’t think I can thank them for that. They pushed me over the edge, so it was a long journey back,” Kiper revealed. “I did get to dance with natives in Africa, so that part was very cool. I really appreciated that part.”
She went on to say that the producers of “Survivor” profit off of the castaways’ pain and then leave the contestants to pick up the pieces.
“Producers of ‘Survivor’ will make money off of other people’s pain for the rest of their lives, while the contestants just deal with the outcomes,” said Kiper.
She added that she prefers appearing on “scripted shows with residuals and craft service.” Kiper also said she didn’t apply to be on “Survivor,” she was recruited, but that is “a whole different story.”
“I’m done spilling all of my beans for free on reality TV. I live in Los Angeles with my husband and 5-year-old daughter and I’m on cloud 9! I love being a wife and mom, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world,” said Kiper.
In case you’re curious, Kiper has TV credits that include For Your Love,” “Angel,” “Gilmore Girls,” “Judging Amy,” “Law & Order: L.A.” and “Weeds,” among several others.
Kiper Is Reserving Judgment on the Changes Coming to ‘Survivor 41’
Host Jeff Probst has teased for fans that “Survivor 41” is the “dawn of a new era” of the show. It will be faster-paced, with a shorter shooting schedule, more dangerous and also they are dropping the “themes” that have been so popular with the show in recent years. Mostly, we think that’s because the show is running out of gimmicks and it can’t use the location as a subtitle anymore because the show is now permanently shooting in Fiji rather than traveling all around the world from season to season.
Kiper said she doesn’t expect the show to be too different and she’s reserving judgment so far on the revamped version.
“I think maybe they’re going in a new direction now … The die-hard fans will eat up anything that they throw at us, especially now, because of the long pause due to the freakin’ global pandemic,” said Kiper, adding, “I don’t expect it to be TOO different because ‘you don’t fix what ain’t broke,’ but it’ll be possibly more intense (if that’s possible), and people will watch… that’s for damn sure.”
She also said that when she first heard about the shorter filming schedule (the show is going from 39 days to 26 days, which is almost two weeks shorter), she was upset but now she says we’ll just have to see how it plays out.
“At first, I was upset by the idea of them not doing the full 39 days because the people that make it to the end have not had the full exposure to the insanity that everyone else had to go through. Apparently, they don’t give them any rest days… so I guess we’ll see on that one,” said Kiper.
“Survivor” returns for its 41st season on Wednesday, September 22 at 8 p.m. Eastern and Pacific times on CBS. The 42nd season will air in the spring of 2022. Seasons 43 and 44 are casting now, so if you’ve always wanted to apply, now is your chance!