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Jeff Varner confronts Zeke Smith about why he did not reveal he was transgender on ‘Survivor’

13 April 2017 Entertainment News


Fourth Estate Staff

Hollywood, CA, United States (4E) – The latest episode of “Survivor” showed a turn of events after Zeke Smith admitted that he is a transgender after Jeff Varner confronted him about it.

The 29-year-old was first introduced during “Millennials vs. Gen-X” season. The new season of “Survivor” is called “Game Changers” and this is the second time Smith is on the show. The latest season is about the players who made a major impact in the previous seasons.

Last week, Smith got rid of the two-time “Survivor” winner Sandra and it blindsided Varner. It seemed like Varner exposing Smith being a transgender was his way of getting even. During the tribal council for the latest episode of “Survivor,” Varner told host Jeff Probst that he felt he was going home. He added, "There is deception here. Deceptions on levels Jeff that these guys don't even understand. Why haven't you told anyone that you're transgender?" Many of his teammates said he had no right to expose Smith like that as the information was something personal.

Varner told Probst he always argues for the rights of transgender people back in his home in North Carolina but this time, he felt like he had to argue for his life that is why he threw that information out in the open. Varner went home in the end. He did apologize shortly thereafter but still got voted off.

Smith said he does not want to be the trans “Survivor” played and wanted to be known as just Zeke, the “Survivor” player. He told the producers of the show that he was transgender but never told his fellow contestants. He added in his statement, "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."

As for how Smith handled the situation, Probst said he was blown away by how he responded to Varner. Probst said it felt like Smith prepared for that unpredictable and vulnerable moment his entire life.

The latest season of “Survivor” airs Wednesdays at 8 P.M. on CBS.

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