Not sure how many of you have been watching but last night ended with a pretty big event. Dan Spilo was removed from the game at the very end of the episode. He had been accused of improperly touching some off the women on the show in earlier episodes, but the show and the contestants seemed to brush it off at the time. We were told very little and then, suddenly, Dan was removed last night.

You can read a bit more about it here:

Here is the big problem for Survivor... on the earlier episode where Dan was accused of being "handsy" the show said there was a special meeting off camera with the contestants both in a group and individually. But, right after that meeting no one acted like there had been a major discussion and a bunch of players who you would have thought would be against Dan were still buddy-buddy with him as they joined forces to vote out the woman who had been most vocal in accusing him. It made no sense at the time. Well, thanks to some contestants now talking about it, we know that the show's producers actually did very little in terms of letting everyone know what was going on with Dan. The article I linked above talks about this.

In the episode where Kellee was voted out of the game, Dan had seemingly no self-awareness about his behavior, despite CBS’s assertion that the matter had been discussed with Dan and the rest of the group. So what did those meetings entail? According to Aaron, who was voted out just a few tribals after Kellee, production never made it clear that anything serious was happening:

Our “production talk” came about 10 minutes before our Immunity Challenge. My experience in that talk was this: “Aaron, we want you to know if you don’t feel comfortable or safe, please know we are here for you. We want everyone to feel safe out here.” Very out of the blue. I thought to myself, “Is this standard? Do they do this every season?” I have no clue. Just a very vague blanket statement telling me if I ever felt unsafe, I should let production know. Roger that guys, now can I go focus on winning immunity? There was never any indication that something was going on or that someone had issues. It just seemed like a standard halftime meeting.

Missy—who used Dan’s behavior to attempt to further her place in the game—said something similar:

I did not realize the extent of the situation with Kellee and Dan. I did not connect our production meeting to Kellee and Dan either. I was very much in game mode and focused on the upcoming challenge. I felt as though production was checking in with us individually.
Let me tell you, this could be a major issue for the show moving forward. They cannot be seen as sweeping sexual misconduct under the rug. I won't be surprised if there is some significant backlash to the way they handled it this season.

It is worth noting that though the show has slipped a bit in the ratings in recent years, in its 39th season Survivor is still one off the top 30 or so shows on broadcast TV.

-Jason "FWIW, I have never missed a single episode of the show... 580 and counting" Evans