Xander Hastings Addresses Age Discrimination in ‘Survivor’

20-year-old Xander Hastings was one of the vital standard gamers to come back out of “Survivor 41.” Although he did not win, many followers have been steadfast of their perception that he was “robbed” of a rightful victory final December, when it was revealed he obtained no jury votes, dropping to Erika Casupanan and Deshawn Radden in a 7-1-0 vote.

Many followers believed some jurors refused to vote for Xander due to his demographic identification – he was a white male in a season which was vastly influenced by real-world cultural issues, and which got here after a six-season string of male winners. However, what some followers could not have thought of is that Xander’s youth could have prevented some jurors from contemplating him mature sufficient to deal with the win. Xander himself spoke of this phenomenon in a current interview.

Here’s what you might want to know:

Xander Said His Age Was a ‘Huge Hurdle,’ That Older Jurors Could Feel ‘Entitled’

During a dialogue with Rob Cesternino Thursday whereas on his podcast, Rob Has a Podcast, Xander addressed a fan’s query about whether or not it was “tougher for a youthful individual to win ‘Survivor’.” Xander responded that he believed it was a “big hurdle,” mentioning how youthful contestants typically conceal their age as a result of it may be seen as a “legal responsibility.” Xander mentioned that this was as a result of he imagined most jurors to be biased towards youthful contestants: “If they’re younger, ‘They do not even have the expertise to know what to do with that cash, it may smash their lives’, [etc].”

Xander added that he believed there was a way of “entitlement in seniority” generally, “like, ‘Oh they’re simply younger, they do not know any higher,’ when you may spend 100 years of doing completely nothing and be no extra smart than a 15-year-old.” He additionally described himself as an “old soul,” saying that as an alternative of getting hobbies most affiliate with youthful individuals, he mentioned, “I’m extra like, I need to go antiquing, [I want] to see a nationwide park.”

Xander, who turned 21 a number of months after filming accomplished, did certainly face a hurdle happening the show. No one as younger as he was has ever gained the show earlier than – the closest has been Jud “Fabio” Birza of season 21, “Nicaragua,” Jenna Morasca of season 6, “The Amazon,” and Sophie Clarke of season 23, “South Pacific,” who have been all 21 once they gained their respective seasons.

Luvu and Ua Thought Xander Was a ‘Pothead’ Due to the Beware Advantage

Though Xander didn’t point out his age particularly when it got here to the well-known “Beware benefit,” he additionally mentioned within the podcast that each of the opposite tribes’ first impression of him within the recreation was when he needed to say his phrase – “I actually consider that butterflies are no longer alive family members saying hello” – a number of occasions at challenges, leading to a number of contestants on Luvu and Ua pondering of him being a “stoner man,” or a “pothead.” Brad Reese, a member of Ua, informed Xander after the show had accomplished filming that he and the remainder of Ua had jokingly referred to as him “butterfly boy.”

Xander added that this primary impression for a lot of contestants was in all probability “fairly damaging long run” for him, explaining that “subconsciously or consciously, I believe that it did have an impact.” He defined that this was largely as a consequence of the truth that individuals seemingly had pre-existing “biases” about him just by him, and that saying these phrases merely performed into these biases. “I’m certain it in all probability did have some ripple results when it comes to how individuals perceived me,” he mentioned.

Though Xander was not the youngest individual on “Survivor 41” (that honor belongs to Liana Wallace, who is 2 months youthful than Xander), he was the one one to make it to the Final Tribal Council, the place he needed to plead his case to the jury. And regardless of a recreation that many followers noticed as glorious, the jury extensively thought of it to be missing in components, as mentioned in a lot of post-game interviews. Whether or not that notion was justified, or partly a results of his age, is one other query, and one which is able to seemingly exist in “Survivor” long gone the present seasons.

“Survivor 42” airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. Eastern and Pacific on CBS. The finale will air Wednesday, May 25, 2022.


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