Why Survivor’s Boston Rob Mariano Is A ‘Scary’ Competitor, According To Jeff Probst

Survivor Winners at War Boston Rob Mariano CBS
(Image credit: CBS)

Spoilers for the March 11 episode of Survivor: Winners at War are discussed below!

Jeff Probst has been warning about Boston Rob Mariano (aka The Robfather) well before Survivor: Winners at War began. In fact, Probst argued that Boston Rob would have been the first contestant he would have voted out. Well, Boston Rob managed to avoid being the first person to get voted off the island, which might be a "scary" proposition for some.

Then, in the March 11 episode of Winners at War, Boston Rob worked to convince Ben and Adam to go against Sarah and Sophie. While Boston Rob’s power of persuasion has been largely touted, the women ended up using their own powers, and Boston Rob was summarily voted out. What does Jeff Probst think about all of this?

Jeff Probst says that when it comes to Survivor, Boston Rob is a “scary” competitor who needs to be controlled, or else they become the victim, as it were. Probst is a big believer in the power of Boston Rob. And why shouldn't he be? Probst is well-versed in Boston Rob’s strategies and overall personality after all this time. Probst once shared that the only one way to beat Boston Rob is to vote him out as soon as possible, which was a strategy that competitors had not exactly adhered to up to this point. In response to the latest Winners at War episode, Probst told EW:

When I was prepping for this season, I took note of the various approaches used by each winner. Everybody has their own style and it tends to match their personality. It made me curious as to which players, if any, would alter their style of play for this season. Ben was very clear out of the gate that he didn’t want people thinking of him as the ‘idol finder.’ He wanted to alter his style of play to try to find a new, less familiar, way to the finish.

While everyone else was trying to shake up their Survivor strategies, Boston Rob was staying true to his. Did that familiarity end up being what cost Boston Rob in Winners at War? He'd previously said he would be officially retiring from Survivor after he finished it, however it went.

He went down playing the same Survivor game like he always had, so Boston Rob at least has that to cling to. That said, Ben altered his strategy and managed to stick around, while Boston Rob stuck to his guns and ended up getting voted out. You have to wonder who had the better plan.

Jeff Probst weighed in on the Survivor veteran’s strategy, saying:

Rob however, has stayed true to his core. He is a boss. He has a plan. He likes things to go his way. And for most of his life it has worked out pretty well. I have a feeling that Rob knew he would be a target straight out of the gate and maybe he figured his best strategy was the one he was most comfortable with — and so he stayed with it. But yes, I think that is what led to him being voted out. He’s controlling. And that’s scary because if you can’t control him, then that means he is controlling you.

Boston Rob’s controlling nature ended up being his undoing. Jeff Probst had taken issue with the fact that Boston Rob had not been voted out earlier. It took some time, but the March 11 episode did see him get voted out. What will happen on Survivor: Winners at War now? Losing Boston Rob is definitely a game-changer, and everyone else's chances just got a little better.

Boston Rob and his wife, Amber Mariano, both competed on Survivor this season. Amber was voted out earlier on Winners at War, and now her husband is about to join her on the Edge of Extinction. What happens next is anyone’s guess!

Tune in to see what happens following Boston Rob getting voted out! Survivor: Winners at War airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on CBS. The reality competition series is not the only thing airing new throughout this winter and spring, so be sure to bookmark our premiere schedule to keep up.

Britt Lawrence

Like a contented Hallmark movie character, Britt happily lives in the same city she grew up in. Along with movies and television, she is passionate about competitive figure skating. She has been writing about entertainment for 5 years, and as you may suspect, still finds it as entertaining to do as when she began.