Entertainment 'Survivor' Castaway Zeke Smith Outed as Transgender by Fellow Contestant Jeff Varner During Tribal Council

15:31  13 april  2017
15:31  13 april  2017 Source:   ETOnline

'Survivor: Game Changers' recap: 'Vote Early, Vote Often'

  'Survivor: Game Changers' recap: 'Vote Early, Vote Often' We'll get to the dethroning of the self-proclaimed queen. We'll get to the tribe swap. We'll get to another chaotic Tribal Council. And we'll get to my one big concern in this so far excellent season of Survivor. But first, we start with what has to be the most awkward hug in human history. God bless Survivor producers for stranding John Cochran and Debbie Wanner on a boat together. I can only assume this was put into motion as some sort of backdoor pilot for an upcoming CBS sitcom titled Power & Cower. What? You think I'm kidding? Cochran has already written for two CBS sitcoms (The Millers and Kevin Can Wait). This tale of two mismatched eccentrics who have to live out on a boat while surviving the elements - and each other! - could be comedic gold and make for a great Thursday night companion piece to Big Bang Theory. Look, I'm not telling you how to do your job, CBS scheduling guru Kelly Kahl, but well, that's how you do your job! Their entire interaction bordered on bizarre - including Cochran's regrettable attempt at a Brad Culpepper impersonation and the fact that he appeared to be being paid by the mention for every time he could awkwardly work some form of the phrase "game changer" into conversation. But the pièce de résistance was the hug. I watched and rewatched this hug so many times it was like I was breaking down the freakin' Zapruder film.

Zeke Smith is trying to make the best of the situation. The two-time Survivor player was outed as transgender by fellow tribe member Jeff Varner during tribal council on Wednesday's episode of Game Changers.

Jeff Probst is opening up about his reaction to Survivor castaway Jeff Varner outting fellow tribe member Zeke Smith as transgender during the tribal council on Wednesday's episode of Game Changers.

Zeke Smith is trying to make the best of the situation.

The two-time Survivor player was outed as transgender by fellow tribe member Jeff Varner during tribal council on Wednesday's episode of Game Changers.

Varner, who told host Jeff Probst that he felt he was going home earlier in the tribal council, decided to reveal one last piece of information in the hopes of saving himself.

"There is deception here. Deceptions on levels, Jeff, that these guys don't even understand," Varner said, looking at Smith. "Why haven't you told anyone that you're transgender?"

'Survivor' Fans Will Be Livid for Zeke After 'Culturally Relevant' Episode

  'Survivor' Fans Will Be Livid for Zeke After 'Culturally Relevant' Episode Tonight's episode of "Survivor: Game Changers" will get ugly, and very personal, with one castaway blindsiding another in a new way -- outing him as transgender. At least the story has a happy ending for Zeke Smith, who told People the April 12 drama serves as a reminder that "hate will always lose." Season 34, Episode 6, "What Happened on Exile, Stays on Exile," has this synopsis from CBS: "What Happened on Exile, Stays on Exile" - Emotions run high when the game begins to take a toll on one tribe, and castaways try to pull their way to safety at a physical immunity challenge." The promo for this episode suggests the castaways are hitting "a breaking point." It's possible the tribe taking the biggest toll is the newly created Nuku tribe, with Ozzy, Tai, Zeke, Jeff, Sarah, Andrea, and now Debbie. Nuku just voted out Queen Sandra Diaz-Twine, blindsiding the angry Jeff Varner. Host/producer Jeff Probst was very careful in his wording when promoting this episode to Entertainment Weekly : The huge threats keep on falling. What can you tease up for next week, sir! One of the best things about the Survivor format is that it allows the show to remain culturally relevant no matter how long it's been on and I think it's a fair statement to say that's the case next week. Culturally relevant. As it turns out, that relevance is "Millennials vs.

Things took a surprising turn at Tribal Council during Wednesday’s edition of “ Survivor ” when Zeke Smith was outed as transgender by one of his fellow castaways . Jeff Varner — who previously competed in season two and again in “ Survivor : Cambodia”

WATCH: ' Survivor ' Castaway Zeke Smith Outed as Transgender by Fellow Contestant Jeff Varner During Tribal Council . During the controversial tribal council , Varner -- who had previously admitted that he had a feeling he was going to be sent home -- made a

While Smith was open about his sexuality during his last appearance on the show, Survivor: Millenials vs. Gen X, and even inspired another contestant, Bret, to come out to him on the show, the transgender reveal was a shock to his tribe -- and something Smith hoped wouldn't come to light.

Instead of turning on Smith, however, the Nuku tribe chastised Varner for outing the Brooklyn native on national television.

"I argue for the rights of transgender people every day in the state of North Carolina," Varner shared, trying to defend himself. "I would never say or do anything to hurt anyone here. Jeff [Probst], I'm arguing for my life. I feel like I've got to throw everything at the wall."

Varner's pleas couldn't save him, however, and he was sent home unanimously by his tribe -- who didn't even have to cast their votes on paper.

Jeff Probst Reacts to 'Survivor' Outing: 'You Just Don't Do That to Someone'

  Jeff Probst Reacts to 'Survivor' Outing: 'You Just Don't Do That to Someone' The longtime host shared his thoughts on Wednesday's controversial episode of 'Survivor: Game Changers.'"In 34 seasons of Survivor, I have rarely, if ever, personally commented on what is said or done in the game. But this is a unique situation that falls outside the normal boundaries," Probst told Entertainment Weekly on Wednesday. "I cannot imagine anyone thinking what was done to Zeke was okay on any level, under any circumstances, and certainly not simply because there was a million dollars on the line.

Zeke Smith was outed as transgender by fellow contestant Jeff Varner in a shocking episode of Survivor : Game Changer on Wednesday, April 12. During a charged tribal council on the show that sees previous seasons returning to the competition

Jeff Probst is opening up about his reaction to Survivor castaway Jeff Varner outting fellow tribe member Zeke Smith as transgender during the tribal council on Wednesday's episode of Game Changers.

  'Survivor' Castaway Zeke Smith Outed as Transgender by Fellow Contestant Jeff Varner During Tribal Council © CBS

Though Smith was visibly upset about being outed, he left Varner with a hug, and said that he hopes the situation will be a learning experience for others.

"Maybe there's someone who is a Survivor fan, and me being outed on the show helps him or helps her or someone else, and so maybe this will lead to a greater good," he explained.

Smith joined legions of outraged Survivor fans on Twitter after the episode, writing, "We cannot control the hazards we face, we can only control how we respond. Love each other. #Survivor #Zekevivor."


Smith also opened up about the situation to People, telling the magazine that he didn't plan on sharing that he was transgender, because he didn't "want to be the 'first transgender Survivor contestant.'"

Survivor Fans React to Zeke Smith Being Outed as Transgender: 'Horrifying & Moving & Beautiful All in One'

  Survivor Fans React to Zeke Smith Being Outed as Transgender: 'Horrifying & Moving & Beautiful All in One' After Wednesday's shocking and emotional episode of Survivor, fans of the hit show took social media by storm to react to Zeke Smith being outed as transgender by fellow contestant Jeff Varner. Fans were outraged by Varner's decision, but praised Smith for the way he handled the situation, calling him a "shining star of a human being." "Zeke is the strongest Survivor I've ever seen," wrote one fan. "That tribal was horrifying & moving & beautiful all in one." Another fan said the episode was "painful yet beautiful" and left them "speechless." "Love is so important! Acceptance of everyone is important." Zeke is the strongest Survivor I've ever seen. That tribal was horrifying & moving & beautiful all in one #SurvivorGameChangers- c b (@bobiakattack) April 13, 2017 Complete and utter shock. @zekerchief you responded so well. I don't know if I could have been that strong. #SurvivorGameChangers- Ashe King (@gamingurl42) April 13, 2017 #SurvivorGameChangers I'm speechless

' Survivor ' Castaway Zeke Smith Outed as Transgender by Fellow Contestant Jeff Varner During Tribal Council . Updated: Apr 12, 2017 7:57 PM2017-04-13 02:57:44 GMT.

Jeff Varner has broken his silence following a controversial episode of Survivor in which he outed fellow contestant Zeke Smith as transgender during a tribal council . He took to Instagram to apologize to Zeke in a written statement.

"I'm not ashamed of being trans, but I didn't want that to be my story," he admitted. "I just wanted to go out on an adventure and play a great game. I just wanted to be known for my game."

The 28-year-old asset manager also opened up about how his personal journey ultimately led him to the reality show.

"My confidence was obliterated, and I was afraid to dream," said Smith, who was raised in Oklahoma, and transitioned while studying religion at Harvard. "I realized I needed to take on a big challenge to become the man I wanted to be. For some reason, that was Survivor."

"When you tell people you're trans, you get two reactions: Either they look at you funny and pull back, or they go, 'Aww, that must be so hard.' I'm a goofy, fun-loving guy, so neither of those reactions work well for me," he explained of why he wasn't ready to share the news with his tribemates, adding that he thinks Varner's outing him was an attempt to paint him as "deceitful."

"I think he hoped others would believe that trans people are dangerous and fraudulent. That reasoning is infinitely worse than him outing me because it's the same one used to discriminate against, attack and murder trans people," Smith added. "What's great is that nobody bought it."

'Survivor': Jeff Varner Calls Outing Zeke as Trans 'the Worst Decision of My Life'

  'Survivor': Jeff Varner Calls Outing Zeke as Trans 'the Worst Decision of My Life' "Survivor: Game Changers" had quite a memorable night last night, and both Zeke Smith and Jeff Varner are now speaking out to share their sides of what happened. Varner knew he was about to be voted out, so he got desperate at tribal council and -- in an attempt to show Zeke's "deception" -- asked why he hadn't told anyone he was transgender. When that got a huge, instant, angry response from the rest of the tribe, Varner tried to argue that he thought Zeke was already out -- at least to the world and "Survivor" at large, just not the people in their tribe. But Zeke had decided not to reveal he was transgender in his first season on "Survivor," hoping to just play as Zeke and not "the trans Survivor player," and this was his very public outing in front of the tribe, Jeff Probst, and millions of viewers. Fans reacted on social media with support for Zeke, and Varner posted a statement acknowledging he did a very bad thing: pic.twitter.

WATCH: ' Survivor ' Castaway Zeke Smith Outed as Transgender by Fellow Contestant Jeff Varner During Tribal Council . During the controversial tribal council , Varner -- who had previously admitted that he had a feeling he was going to be sent home -- made a

The two-time ' Survivor ' player was outed by Varner during Wednesday's episode of 'Game Changers.' Scott Eastwood Goes Shirtless During Charity Triathlon to Benefit St. Jude Kids.

At the end of the day, Smith said, "it's important people see he lost that fight. The message should be clear that hate will always lose."

Varner also took to Twitter after the episode aired to offer his apologies to Smith, writing, "I recklessly revealed something I mistakenly believed everyone already knew. I was wrong and make no excuses for it. I own responsibility in what is the worst decision of my life."

"Let me be clear, outing someone is assault," he continued. "It robs a strong, courageous person of their power and protection and opens them up to discrimination and danger. Zeke is a wonderful man and I will forever be amazed and inspired by his forgiveness and compassion. I thank God forr that and the gift of being an example as to why you should never do what I did."

EXCLUSIVE: Ozzy Lusth on Witnessing Jeff Varner Out Zeke Smith on 'Survivor': 'The Reaction Was Shock' .
The four-time 'Survivor' player told ET that he hopes the episode will be a 'learning lesson.'The four-time Survivor player was sitting right next to Varner when he outed Smith as transgender during tribal council, and nearly 10 months later, can still recall the intense "shock" he felt that night.

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