ByLexi Heinitz/Nov. 8, 2021 6:55 pm EST
During the whipped coffee, "Tiger King," and Animal Crossing days of quarantine, people were desperate for escapist content to distract themselves from reality. Naturally, a competition show about strangers coming together to forge bonds, build communities, and live on the beach experienced a majorrevival in popularity.
Of course, "Survivor" isn't a new phenomenon. The CBS show debuted in 2000 and has been airing for more than 40 seasons. What started as a social game where competitors were hesitant to vote their tribemates out has evolved into a highly strategic game with hidden immunity idols and an island where players get cast away. With hundreds of competitors over its two-decade run, the survivalist show has brought people from all walks of life to the mainstream. Some of its most memorable players include Boston Rob and his wife Amber Mariano — who fell in love on Season 8 — as well as Cirie Fields, who went from self-proclaimed couch potato to four-time competitor, and the queen, Sandra Diaz-Twine, who won the game twice with her signature 'go girl, give us nothing' strategy.
One of host Jeff Probst's favorite players, though, is Parvati Shallow, a four-time competitor and one-time winner of the Sole Survivor title and the million-dollar prize (via EW). Shallow, who initially auditioned for "The Amazing Race," has played a total of 149 days in the game and is often regarded as one of the greatest Survivor players of all time (via Heavy). Here's her story.
Parvati joined Survivor in Cook Islands
When the theme for Season 13 of "Survivor" was announced, it instantly received backlash and remains controversial to this day (via HuffPost). The show's producers were looking to address the lack of diversity in its casting by dividing the tribes by race and ethnicity, which challenged them to bring in a record-breaking number of Asian-American, Black, and Latino competitors. Parvati Shallow was recruited to join the caucasian tribe, Rarotonga, and never had to contend with the pressure to represent a minority group the way most of the others did. However, these divided tribes quickly merged into "melting pots," putting the theme on the back-burner.
Shallow gained a reputation as a flirt for her calculated efforts to seduce and manipulate the men on her tribe, which she later attributed to her experience in the service industry, where it's standard practice to charm customers to receive better tips (Las Culturistas). This strategy landed her in sixth place, making her a member of the jury.
Yul Kwon won the season and was notably immune to Parvati's enchanting ways because, unlike most of the other competitors, he recognized that she was playing the game. Though Parvati didn't make it to the end, "Survivor" fans embraced her alluring gameplay, which paved the way for her to come back for "Survivor: Fans vs. Favorites."
Parvati emerged victorious as a Favorite in Micronesia
"Survivor: Micronesia," better known as "Survivor: Fans vs. Favorites," is one of the show's most celebrated seasons. Super-fans competed against some of their favorite players, with Parvati Shallow returning as a Favorite. Though she began in a couples alliance with Ozzy Lusth from "Survivor: Cook Islands" and James Clement and Amanda Kimmel from "Survivor: China," it was her formation of the Black Widow Brigade that secured her victory. Made up of Amanda, Cirie Fields from "Survivor: Panama," and Fans Natalie Bolton and Alexis Jones, Parvati's all-girls alliance dominated the game. Their reign produced one of the most shocking moves in Survivor historywhenthe Black Widows convinced Fan Erik Reichenbach to give them his immunity necklace moments before voting him out.
Because of her clever, aggressive gameplay, Parvati beat Amanda in the finale. While reflecting on her win with Survivor alumni Rob Cesternino, she said that her intuition was everything. "I had to move with what the game was giving me in any given moment, and in order to do that, you have to have a relationship with your intuition enough to hear the voice," she explained (via Rob Has a Podcast).
Jeff Probst was particularly impressed, calling her his favorite winner. "I mean, everybody who won this game has been a genius in how they've done it ... But watching Parvati, still when I go back and I see some of those episodes — tiny little adjustments, all of it about persuasion," he raved to EW, complimenting her thoughtfulness.
Parvati returned again for Heroes vs. Villains
Season 20 featured another theme, this time pitting returning players against one another as either Heroes or Villains. Parvati Shallow was on the Villains tribe with notorious players like Tyson Apostol and Coach from "Survivor: Tocantins."
Now a Sole Survivor, Parvati continued to play hard and make risky moves to propel herself forward. She aligned herself with the infamous Russell Hantz from "Survivor: Samoa" and Danielle DiLorenzo from "Survivor: Panama." Working with Jerri Manthey from Season Two, they voted out Boston Rob.
Parvati stayed on top of the game but found herself a frequent target and was less in control than she'd been on "Fans vs. Favorites" because her competitors knew she was a threat. Despite the challenges, she made it into the top three with Russell and Sandra Diaz-Twine from "Survivor: Pearl Islands." Sandra, who was also a Villain, won and became the first two-time Sole Survivor.
Parvati placed second and received praise for her bold use of the idols and her dynamic social game in addition to her determination and physical strength . Though she leaned into her dark side, many fans questioned her placement on the Villains tribe. Parvati said that she was intentionally separated from Cirie Fields, James Clement, and Amanda Kimmel, who played as Heroes, to prevent her former alliances from rising again. She also revealed that she was initially cast as a Hero but had to switch places with Candice Cody from "Survivor: Cook Islands," who was fittingly cast as a Villain (via Las Culturistas).
Winners at War was an emotional return for Parvati
After being away from the game for more than a decade, Parvati Shallow returned for "Survivor: Winners at War." Season 40 brought together 20 of the show's most beloved winners, kicking off with a champagne toast and reflection on their journeys. For many, it was like coming home. For Parvati, however, it was difficult because she had left her 10-month old daughter and then-husband behind. In the past, she'd always been the mischievous, flirty player, but now, she was a new mother.
Despite this, Parvati threw herself into the game and aligned with the Old School Survivors — those who had been out of the game for years and were inexperienced with its evolution. On the Sele tribe, she worked with her former rival Boston Rob, close friend Ethan Zohn from "Survivor: Africa," and Danni Boatwright from "Survivor: Guatemala."
Unfortunately, the Old School players were outnumbered and became easy targets for the younger, strategy-based players. They were picked off one by one, with Parvati sent to the Edge of Extinction on Day 16. "Getting voted out before the merge? That's so lame, I've never done that before," she exclaimed upon arrival at the second-chance island.
On the Edge of Extinction, Parvati had the opportunity to get back into the main competition. However, she lost to Natalie Anderson from "Survivor: San Juan del Sur," who went on to place second. New School Survivor Tony Vlachos from "Survivor: Cagayan" later won "Winners at War."
Parvati wrote a Survivor-inspired children's book
After competing on "Survivor: Winners at War," Parvati Shallow co-authored a children's story for Articulation Books. Sharing to her Instagram, she described "Om the Otter" as "a beautiful adventure" that helps children and their caretakers "calm down, learn breathing techniques and mindfulness."
She wrote "Om the Otter" as a gift to her daughter Ama after returning from a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to compete with the best of the best Survivor players. During the game, she often spoke about how different it was to compete as a mother versus as a carefree, flirty 20-something. Leaning on her friends and fellow players for support motivated her to write "Om the Otter."
"It's really inspired by my time with Ethan (Zohn) on the Edge of Extinction where it's like, I'm basically embodying Om the Otter," she explained on Las Culturistas, adding that the Davu the Dingo character was inspired by Ethan.
A certified yoga teacher and wellness coach, Parvati led her friend through meditation and helped him work through his complicated feelings about being on "Survivor" after surviving a rare form of cancer that took a toll on his physical and mental health. Together, they worked toward "being present."
Parvati has always been spiritual, explaining that her victory on "Fans vs. Favorites" was guided by a mantra her father had shared with her: "The strength of the universe is inside me" (Las Culturistas).
Parvati Shallow's other TV ventures
Parvati Shallow is best known for competing on Survivor four times, but she has other on-screen credits. From "Survivor: Caramoan" through "Survivor: Cagayan," she hosted CBS's web-exclusive after show, where she put her journalism degree to good use interviewing contestants. Additionally, she appeared in various Survivor-related reunion shows, documentaries, and interviews. Beyond Survivor, Parvati had a cameo alongside Amanda Kimmel in the 2009 thriller "Into the Blue 2: The Reef." Acting as stuck-up volleyball players, they challenge the main characters to a tournament that they barely lose in the end. The direct-to-DVD film also features reality star Audrina Patridge from "The Hills," and holds a mere 17% on Rotten Tomatoes.
In July 2011, Parvati hosted the third season of "Around the World for Free." The travel web series followed the recently-crowned Sole Survivor as she attempted to "circumnavigate the globe in 100 days without a penny in (her) pocket" (via CBS). Later, she appeared in the controversial 2014 documentary "Isolated," which explored surfing, cannibalism, human rights violations, and unethical mining exploits in New Guinea.
Survivor changed Parvati's life
David Livingston/Getty Images
Parvati Shallow had the unique experience of watching herself grow up and be perceived as an edited character rather than a well-rounded person on a televised social game — four times. She spoke at length about this on Las Culturistas, expressing how she didn't expect to come off as a seductress on "Survivor: Cook Islands."
"I watched it and I was like 'Oh ... am I really that?'" she revealed, saying she had always thought of herself as "kind and generous and fun." She admitted that how she was portrayed on the show and the backlash she received prompted an identity crisis. Through serious introspection, she explored who she wanted to be going forward and found herself through meditation. Now, she teaches yoga, works as a life coach, and offers motivational speaking events. On her professional website, she explains that through her work, she aims to help people "build solid foundations of self-reliance" and pushes them to "take courageous action to live a life of freedom, love, and joy — and really go after the things they want in life."
"It's my greatest joy and ultimate fulfillment to guide people on the grand adventure of discovering the infinite power of their own souls," she wrote.
What is Parvati Shallow doing now? ›
Shallow currently resides in Los Angeles, California and is a yoga teacher.Did Parvati marry someone from Survivor? ›
Parvati Shallow, a fan-favorite from multiple iterations of Survivor and the Sole Survivor of Fans vs. Favorites, started dating John Fincher of Survivor: Samoa in 2014. They married in 2017 and welcomed a daughter in 2018, with Parvati returning to compete in Winners at War just months after giving birth.What happened with Amanda and Parvati? ›
In the end, Parvati Shallow defeated fellow Favorite Amanda Kimmel by a vote of 5–3 to become the Sole Survivor. The viewers' favorite contestants, as named on the reunion show, were James Clement, Kimmel and Oscar "Ozzy" Lusth.Who is Parvati Shallow married to? › Did Parvati get pregnant? ›
It is not that she is a goddess hence she cannot become pregnant. Even goddess Lakshmi and Ksheera (the goddess of milk) too became pregnant with their kids Kama Dev, Amaravalli, Sundaravalli, and Naag Kanya Sulochana. But why didn't she?Who did Parvati have a baby with? ›
Parvati with Shiva and sons Ganesha (leftmost) and Kartikeya (rightmost).Who slept together on Survivor? ›
- Cole Medders and Jessica Johnston. ...
- Taylor Lee Stocker and Jessica "Figgy" Figueroa. ...
- Amber Brkich and Rob Mariano. ...
- Whitney Duncan and Keith Tollefson. ...
- Erik Huffman and Jaime Dugan-Huffman. ...
- Colleen Haskell and Greg Buis. ...
- Jenna Morasca and Ethan Zohn.
Who got pregnant on Survivor? In November 2020, Sierra Dawn Thomas announced that she would be joining the list of Survivor cast members with kids. The season 30 alum was expecting her first child with former costar Joe Anglim.Why did Parvati file for divorce? ›
In the original filing, obtained by PEOPLE, Shallow calls Fincher, a fellow Survivor competitor, "abusive and erratic." She details multiple instances in which Fincher, 38, allegedly committed domestic violence and verbal abuse against her and 4-year-old daughter, Ama Fincher.What happened between Parvati and John? ›
Shallow and Fincher began dating in 2014 and got engaged in January 2017. Seven months later, they tied the knot in a July 16 ceremony. She filed for divorce from him in Los Angeles County on Aug. 24, citing irreconcilable differences, according to documents obtained by The Blast, which was first to report the news.
How many survivors has Parvati been on? ›
Parvati Shallow is a four-time Survivor contestant, the winner of Survivor: Micronesia - Fans vs. Favorites runner-up of Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains and placed sixth on Cook Island. She is the former host of the Survivor After Show on CBS.com and the winner of Miss Survivor 2012.Who is Amanda dating from Survivor? ›
Years later, Amanda is now happily married to her husband Matt Cooper with two kids, and Ozzy is enjoying the single life traveling the world.Do they have bathrooms on Survivor? ›
Players must use their surroundings as restrooms.
"There are no restrooms on Survivor. Sorry for you!" Probst playfully admits. "The jungle and the ocean are your options." (Keep in mind: There's no toilet paper). He continues, "Aqua dumps, as the players call them, which take place in the ocean, are quite popular.
After winning Micronesia, Parvati was the recipient of a cool $1 million (well, more like $600,000 after Uncle Sam takes his cut). Parvati decided to invest this money into a business, and she and Amazing Race contestant Erika Shay opened ESP Wellness Center in Santa Monica.How many kids does Parvati have? ›
Parvati ji had two sons and a daughter, and her first son was named Kartikeya and the other was named Ganesha. The daughter was named Ashok Sundari. In fact, she says, "Mother Parvati built this daughter only to eliminate her loneliness.How many births did Parvati take? ›
Goddess Parvati went through the cycle of re-birth 108 times until Lord Shiva agreed to marry her. Teej festival celebrates this very dedication by Parvati.Did Parvati get periods? ›
It is believed that her abdominal region, which includes the uterus, fell in Chengannur, and this is why she menstruates at this temple. Parvati is believed to be the reincarnation of Sati.Why can't Parvati have a baby? ›
Moreover, because of the nature of who Shiva was – he was considered yaksha swarupa or not of human origin – Parvati could not bear his child.Can Parvati give birth? ›
However according to the Skanda Purana, Kartikeya is said to be the elder son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. It is also believed that Kartikeya was not born from the womb of Parvati. The Goddess was cursed by Rati, she would never be able to bear children.Was Parvati a human? ›
Parvati's Names and Incarnations
Before she was Parvati, she was a human woman form named "Sati" or "Dakshayani," and the daughter of Daksha Prajapati, a son of Brahma. Sati loved and married Lord Shiva, despite the fact that her father did not like him.
Who is Parvati's baby daddy? ›
Her and husband John Fincher of Survivor Samoa are the proud parents of a beautiful baby girl, with Parvati sharing the news on her Instagram account. There is no shortage of accolades for Parvati Shallow when it comes to Survivor.Who from Survivor has been to jail? ›
He was convicted with three counts related to attempted tax evasion and fraudulent tax return in January 2006. He served his fifty-one months and then, after failing to amend his 2000 and 2001 tax returns, additional nine months in prison. Richard Holman Hatch Jr. Newport, Rhode Island, U.S.Who is the most loved person on Survivor? ›
Cirie Fields is possibly the most beloved contestant to ever play and not win the game of Survivor. She also competed in four seasons starting in 2006, with Survivor: Panama - Exile Island.Do returning players on Survivor get paid? ›
And if you're a returning player, you can net about $25,ooo for being the first one to leave the island. Other contestants are paid on a sliding scale based on how long they end up staying in the game. For the finale/reunion show, contestants receive $10,000.What happens when a girl gets her period on Survivor? ›
There are no proper flushing toilets during the Survivor experience, but rather a "drop hole" – a toilet seat and a 10-metre long drop. There, contestants can access pads and tampons, but things can get a bit sticky if your flow is heaviest when you're out at a challenge that's far from camp.Who did Jeff Probst marry off of Survivor? ›
Amber ended up winning the season in a 4-3 vote. At the Survivor finale show in 2004, Rob proposed to Amber, and they got married the following year. Rob and Amber have stayed together, and they have four daughters. The Survivor couple competed in many more seasons of Survivor and The Amazing Race.Why did Parvati do penance? ›
Parvati, daughter of the King of Himalaya, who did penance for 12 years to get Lord Shiva as her husband, had to undergo a difficult test of her love set by the Sapt Rishis (Seven Sages). Having emerged successfully, Parvati was blessed by them.Why did Parvati turns into Kali? ›
The Linga Purana describes Shiva asking Parvati to defeat the asura Daruka, who received a boon that would only allow a female to kill him. Parvati merges with Shiva's body, reappearing as Kali to defeat Daruka and his armies.Who Abducted Parvati? ›
In the Matsya Purāṇa, Andhaka, the son of Hiraṇyākṣa, tries to abduct Parvati from Shiva.
What does Parvati hold and why? ›
Parvati has four arms. In her arms she carries prayer beads, a mirror, a bell and citron. But when she sits by the side of her husband Shiva, Parvati has only two arms. In her form with two arms, Parvati holds her right hand up in blessing and holds a lotus flower in her left hand.Is Parvati a villain? ›
While Sandra is notorious for being the only (current) double winner in show history, Parvati is the baddie that made our list. She sits at #2 for both her appearance on “Heroes vs. Villains” where she used not one, but two hidden immunity idols at a single tribal council and neither of them for herself.How long did Parvati hold arm up? ›
She is currently tied for the record for having lasted the longest in this challenge with Teresa Cooper, at six hours. Parvati accomplished this in Micronesia.What Survivor season was the longest? ›
Why was Survivor: Australian Outback 42 days? Australian Outback lasted longer than any other Survivor season for one simple reason.Why is Parvati the best Survivor? ›
Many argue that Parvati's runner-up game in Heroes vs Villains was actually better than her win on Micronesia and those arguments wouldn't be wrong. She's an all-around skilled player in the game of Survivor and that's shown with her ability to make it to the end twice and also make the jury in her other two seasons.Has anyone from Survivor dated? ›
There have been many "Survivor" couples over the years, but not all have stayed together. Jenna Bowman and Sebastian Lowe from "Survivor: Ghost Island" are living together. "Boston" Rob Mariano and Amber Brkich of "Survivor: All Stars" are married with four kids.Did Jon and Jaclyn from Survivor get married? ›
They both did well – he ended up in sixth place, and she was the season's runner-up. (It was a Blood vs. Water season, so Misch and Schultz were already dating when they competed.) Their love clearly survived Survivor: Misch and Schultz were wed in a traditional ceremony in Detroit on Sunday.Is Denise from Survivor a man? ›
|Television||Survivor: Philippines (winner) Survivor: Winners at War|
"Survivor" stopped providing swimsuits to players in 2018, and the change comes with health risks. UTIs and other infections from wet, dirty clothes disproportionately affect people with vaginas. Several contestants have told Insider about their experience and concerns over sanitary conditions.Do they bring clothes on Survivor? ›
Clothing has to be pre-approved.
The production team goes through each contestant's luggage before they arrive, mainly to check for any prohibited supplies. It's also to make sure that the contestants aren't all wearing the same color t-shirt and that their wardrobe will capture well on camera.
Can you shower while on Survivor? ›
No showers for our castaways. In an AMA on Reddit, Peih-Gee Law from Survivor: China and Survivor: Second Chance explained how she and her cast mates would try to get clean. "Daily hygiene consisted of splashing around in the water and using a piece of someone's cut off jeans to scrub myself.Who is the most successful Survivor winner? ›
#1: Tony Vlachos – 'Survivor: Cagayan' – Season 28, 'Winners at War' – Season 40.Was Parvati supposed to be a hero? ›
It was also revealed by Candice Cody that Parvati Shallow was originally supposed to be on the Heroes tribe, and her on the Villains tribe. Sierra Reed of Tocantins was originally going to be a member of the Heroes tribe, but she had to step down because she got engaged to a producer from her season.Did SIA give money to Survivor 42? ›
Sia Gifted This Fan Favorite 'Survivor 42' Castaway With $100K 'For Being a Good Person': Watch.Who is Parvati first son? ›
Kartikeya is the elder son of Shiva and Parvati, is the god of war, power and strength. His weapon is Vel (spear) in one hand, which is also called as Shakti since his mother Parvati has given all the power to the spear, and he blesses his devotees with the other.Who did Parvati date? ›
Parvati Shallow, a fan-favorite from multiple iterations of Survivor and the Sole Survivor of Fans vs. Favorites, started dating John Fincher of Survivor: Samoa in 2014.How many years did Parvati wait for Shiva? ›
Parvati, daughter of the King of Himalaya, who did penance for 12 years to get Lord Shiva as her husband, had to undergo a difficult test of her love set by the Sapt Rishis (Seven Sages).Is Parvati still a boxer? ›
She and her family moved to Atlanta when she was 11 years old. Having studied martial arts since her youth, she currently works as a female boxer and cocktail waitress.Has anyone from Survivor gotten married? ›
There have been many "Survivor" couples over the years, but not all have stayed together. Jenna Bowman and Sebastian Lowe from "Survivor: Ghost Island" are living together. "Boston" Rob Mariano and Amber Brkich of "Survivor: All Stars" are married with four kids.Is Parvati single? ›
Survivor winner Parvati Shallow has filed for divorce from her husband, fellow Survivor contestant John Fincher after four years of marriage, PEOPLE can confirm.
How many children did Shiva and Parvati have? ›
Shiva has many aspects, benevolent as well as fearsome. In benevolent aspects, he is depicted as an omniscient Yogi who lives an ascetic life on Mount Kailash as well as a householder with his wife Parvati and his three children, Ganesha, Kartikeya and Ashokasundari.Why did Parvati divorce John? ›
In August, Fincher filed for custody of Ama, as well as a formal dissolution of his marriage to Shallow, citing "irreconcilable differences." His filing came a week after Shallow filed for divorce.Who is the best female fighter in boxing? ›
The undisputed lightweight champion of the world, Katie Taylor is highly regarded by many in boxing.Who has won Survivor the most? ›
Tony and Sandra are affectionately known as the King and Queen of “Survivor” because they're the only two-time winners in the show's history. Tony prevailed in “Cagayan” and “Winners at War,” while Sandra claimed victory in “Pearl Islands” and “Heroes vs. Villains.”Has anyone gotten pregnant during Survivor? ›
Former Survivor contestants Sierra Dawn and Joe Anglim revealed they're expecting their first baby a year after they got married in a winter wedding.Do they give condoms in Survivor? ›
Do you get pads or tampons on Survivor? As always, the cast members do receive essential items such as tampons and condoms, and he said that birth control comes into play soon, as there are "love affairs this season, plural," including "some of the most intimate footage we've ever had."Was anyone ever pregnant on Survivor? ›
Georgia, a forensic psychologist from Noosa, Queensland, had no idea she was pregnant when she went on the intense reality show.