Naked and Afraid: It's not the Garden of Eden! I do think it's an interesting laboratory of human behavior and how men and women get along in relationships. We can all take lessons from it.
After the initial meeting with each other, and exchange of conversation, most of the women do a personality assessment of the guy, relating to how well they expect to get along. The men rarely vocalize a personality assessment of the woman.
Once the stress of having to survive kicks in, almost every contestant, male or female, starts criticizing and complaining about the other about something. To some extent, they are just taking their own stress and victimizing the other with their blaming and condemning. The women are more vocal about it while the men tend to be more outwardly stoic, but each sex feels complaints about the other equally. Instead of blaming the other, each individual would be better off if they focused on what he/she could do to improve the situation. I see little positive communication about needs and wants and comparison of expectations of the self with that of the other.
As in real life, in most cases, the women prioritizes the importance of the relationship, more than the male, as well as managing the emotions in the relationship. On some level, the woman assumes that the importance of the relationship is integral to their joint survival and well-being.
In terms of being able to handle surviving in the jungle, in many ways the women do better than the men. They are more practical and in many cases seem to adjust to circumstances more easily. For the guys that take a more macho or Tarzan type attitude, it does not necessary translate into better survive-ability. The more macho, he-man types that do well, do so because of better survival skills not because they are more macho or physically tougher. Among the guys, having a lot of muscle doesn't seem to help in survive-ability. If anything, it means they need more food and water, which isn't available, which means they suffer more and lose more weight.
Upon completion, the men tend to mostly talk about having improved their physical survival skills. The women mostly talk about improving their confidence, self-esteem, etc., though some women do comment on their physical survive-ability. One women remarked about how this goes on their list of craziest things she ever did.
Often, the woman makes some sort of make-shift clothing to cover her private parts. What's the point, since they're already naked and in the jungle, the guy and camera crew has already seen all her private parts, etc., though there is a camera crew, and one woman did refer to insects attacking her, "unmentionables," as she called it.
It find it curious that women do this naked in front of a strange man outdoors, plus a camera crew for T.V. and then they claim that they are modest. But now that I think of it, most of the men do try and fashion some sort of covering for themselves down there.
I note that many of the woman have a preference for makeup, though it has no survival value. I do give the women credit for being willing to appear on T.V. covered in dirt and bug bites.
The women do provide complimentary skills to men, in terms of what they think is important both in terms of physical survival and getting along with the other. This is subtle and easy for men to overlook/underrate. This may be me just projecting my own shit, but in most cases I feel the male is overwhelmed by the emotional & relationship outpourings of the woman. In general, we men do not have sufficiently developed skills/brains of that sort. In a few cases, the men are appropriately considerate of the women's needs/wants, but that does not necessarily mean the same male has good survival skills in terms of being able to get food, clothing, and shelter. I conclude that for long term sustainability, survival means not just skill at getting food, clothing, and shelter, but being able to co-exist harmoniously with your partner. In general, men need women, and women need men. We need to stop pointing the finger at one another and need to work harder/smarter at getting along.