The Funny 115
#98. Boston Rob - The Rooster Hunter
Marquesas - Episode 1
People tend to remember Sarah "Cleopatra" Jones as having the best introduction in Survivor: Marquesas. After all, she came in standing up on a raft while her "servants" paddled her in. Probst loved it, the producers loved it, and it was one of the most memorable character introductions of all time. Everybody remembers Sarah from the Marquesas premiere.
But in my personal experience I thought there was an even better character introduction in Survivor: Marquesas. It wasn't as widely talked about as Sarah's entrance, but for my money I thought this one was even better. And as an added bonus, the guy I'm talking about ended up being one of the most memorable Survivor characters of all time
That's right, I'm talking about "Boston" Rob Mariano... the kid who tried to catch a rooster in the Marquesas premiere.
Our introduction to Boston Rob. Note that he didn't have the porn star mustache yet, but he did have his buff in an X around his elbow.
Boston Rob has obviously gone on to bigger and better things since then, but I'll never forget the first time I saw him on Maraamu. Here was this kid in a Red Sox cap who just screamed enthusiasm. He was here to have fun, he had a smile that never left his face, and most memorably, he tied his buff around his elbow in a very distinct "X" pattern. Yes, Rob Mariano was a distinct and enjoyable character from the very first minute of the game, and that was even before we found out he worshipped The Godfather and talked in a comical Boston accent. In fact, the Good Will Hunting accent was pretty much the icing on the cake. Once we heard his accent for the first time, Boston Rob officially become a Survivor legend. We officially had a really good charactah ovah heah.
Anyway, Boston Rob's first big Survivor moment came at the start of the first episode... when he decided he was going to go catch a rooster. It was the first day of the game, Rob was already tired of eating fruit, and he was salivating over the thought of providing for the tribe. So when he heard some "garblin'" off in the distance, Rob knew what had to be done. He was going to go catch a rooster and he was going to do it for the good of the tribe. And for the rest of the first episode... Rob Mariano officially became known as "chicken man."
Rob building the shelter when he hears a rooster off in the distance
"Hey, do you hear that garblin'?"
(Note: I say "garblin'" because that's literally how Rob said the word "gobbling." It was Boston Rob's first memorable quote on Survivor. "Hey, do you hear that garblin'?" That's an actual quote! I know I've said it before, and I'm sure I'll say it again: God bless the Boston accent. For reals.)
As expected, Rob's first foray into rooster hunting turned out to be a disaster. For one, he took Peter "Holes" Harkey as his right hand man, and you can guess how that turned out. The second big problem was that Rob was unaware that roosters could fly. In fact, this small variable (flying skill) proved to a major hindrance, because it transformed Rob's plan from "corner the rooster in a tree and catch it" into the much less-successful plan of "corner the rooster in the tree and watch it fly away." So anyway, that's what happened. The rooster took off like a jet, Rob gave a really funny confessional about how he had been unaware that roosters could fly, and that was our introduction to Boston Rob on Survivor.
Step 1: Rob chases the rooster
Step 2: Rob and Peter corner it in a tree
"Wait, those things can fly? They can't fly, can they?"
Rob explaining to us how the rooster took off "like a 747." "It was outta heah."
Boston Rob's rooster hunt was one of the best character introductions we've ever had on the show. And I'll never forget that he actually said the word "garblin'."
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