The US Survivor is officially scrapping use of the encouraging phrase “come on in, guys!” in favour of a more inclusive phrase.
The series has just returned for its 41st season (!!!) and in the premiere ep, Survivor host Jeff Probst asked the cast if they were comfortable with the use of the word “guys”.
“I love saying it, it’s part of the show,” Probst said. “But I, too, want to be of the moment. So my question to you is, in the context of Survivor, is a word like ‘guys’ OK, or is it time to retire that word?”
Evvie Jagoda, who identified herself as part of the LGBTQIA+ community, answered that she thought it was totally fine.
“I personally think ‘guys’ is OK,” she said. “It’s such a signature expression, and I, as a woman and as a queer woman, do not feel excluded by ‘guys’.”
There were no other objections, so Probst said to “mark it down as discussed and decided.”
It came up again, however, a coupla days later during a different challenge, whereby another contestant said that after taking more time to think it through, he decided he wasn’t on board with the word.
“I don’t think we should use the word ‘guys,’” said Ricard Foye, who is also in the LGBTQIA+ community. “I don’t really agree with it. The reality is that Survivor has changed over the past 21 years, and those changes have allowed all of us — all of these brown people, black people, Asian people, so many queer people — to be here simultaneously.”
Probst totally agreed with this sentiment and decided to scrap use of the word “guys” altogether.
“I love that you thought about it. I love that you had the courage within a million-dollar game to stand up. I’m with you. I want to change it. I’m glad that was the last time I will ever say it,” he responded.
“I realise in this moment somebody right now is on social media saying ‘Aw, he caved,’ @jeffprobst on Twitter. I’ll probably never read it anyway. All right. I love that. We just made a change. From now on, it is: ‘Come on in.’”
This is quite a polarising topic and some believe that the word ‘guys’ is genderless, while others believe that it’s sexist as it seemingly refers only to men.