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Survivor: Redemption Island — Is Phillip Really A Former Agent?

April 18, 2011 10:00 AM by Ryan Haidet

Ah, Phillip Sheppard.  He’s become the fun fodder for reporters and fans of reality television.  Not only are his comments and actions a bit whacky, there is a big mystery regarding the truth of his past.  Every time Phillip’s name appears on the screen during an episode of Survivor: Redemption Island, there is a question mark at the end of his job description where he claims to be a former federal agent.  Each time Phillip’s integrity has come into question, he uses his claim that he is a former federal agent as a defense mechanism and blah, blah, blah.  We know the drill by now.  But is Phillip really telling the truth?  Is he a former federal agent, but simply can’t prove it because it truly was a government secret?  Or is Phillip simply playing the audience for reality television notoriety?  Is he a liar?  Or is he just crazy?

His former tribemates Francesca and Krista both have expressed their disbelief in Phillip’s former job with the government.  “I find it completely hard to believe, but he could be just that amazing of an agent that he’s still undercover and this is all an act,” Francesca said a few weeks ago after she was eliminated from the competition.

Krista, who called Phillip a clown, mirrored Francesca’s remarks by saying, “I think we all need to sit down and write our congressmen immediately if that happens to be the case.  Phillip is a buffoon.  He’s paranoid.  He’s a delusional human being.  He’s really unstable.  So if that’s the kind of person that has anything remotely to do with our government in any capacity whatsoever, I would be so scared.”

How could anybody believe that this guy worked undercover for our government when he wears a feather strapped to his forehead claiming in appeared out of thin air while meditating?  How could anybody trust a guy who walks around wearing the most-frightening pair of pink granny panties ever seen on television?

But how can any of us doubt him either?

We are only getting a glimpse of Phillip’s life on Survivor.  We know very little about how he is outside of the game.  As he mentioned in confessionals this season, everybody thinks he’s crazy, which is the perfect reason to drag him along to the final vote.  Maybe he’s just playing strategically.  Honestly, I think Phillip is the victim of his own character — just like Coach from Survivor: Tocantins and Survivor: Heroes Vs. Villains.  They both have huge personalities with big claims that are easy to call into question when the storytelling guides us that direction.

Of the 229 previous Survivor contestants I’ve met, Coach is one of the most kind and caring (see image above from the first time I met Coach).  He doesn’t give off the same vibe he did on the show.  Truly.  Maybe it’s the same case for Phillip.

Despite the laughter and question surrounding Phillip’s former career, host Jeff Probst vows he will get to the bottom of this season’s biggest mystery.  “We will find out for sure if Phillip is a former federal agent at the live show in NY on May 15th!” Probst tweeted during last week’s episode.  Maybe he’ll offer Phillip to take a lie detector test just like they did to Coach.

What do you think?  Is Phillip really a former federal agent?

Survivor: Redemption Island continues each Wednesday night at 8 p.m.

Images courtesy of CBS.

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Topics: CBS Reality TV Shows, Survivor |

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5 Comments »

5 Responses to “Survivor: Redemption Island — Is Phillip Really A Former Agent?”

  1. Steve Says:
    April 18th, 2011 at 11:33 am

    Nice to hear that Coach isn’t a complete tool. I think Phillip is crazy like a fox. A bipolar fox maybe but still…

  2. Christine Says:
    April 19th, 2011 at 5:06 am

    Oh geez I hope not!

  3. Linda Says:
    May 1st, 2011 at 9:41 am

    Next Survivor….. Villians vs Villians…. How awesome would that be???

  4. Sharon Allen Says:
    May 15th, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    Absolutely..he was, and maybe still is, a federal agent. If he wasn’t, he should’ve been. If he’d run for the Presidency, he’d have my vote! Crazy? Well, maybe he ain’t the ONLY “crazy” one, after all, whose crazy stick are we measuring with here, anyway?

  5. toby Says:
    May 17th, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    philip served 3 years as a agent and since then he has had 15 jobs in 10 years..so he is smart but i believe in my own opinion he is delusionaly crazy with no thought for any thought but his own being right.although at times when cornered with his wrongs he sways his words to downplay his lies..

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