After taking home the $1 million grand prize as the winner of CBS’s “Survivor: David versus Goliath” on Dec. 19, 2018, Williamsburg’s Nick Wilson took a new job at the Commonwealth Attorney’s office in Whitley and McCreary County, got engaged and moved on with his life following the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
That was until CBS executives contacted him with an offer to participate in the 40th Season of the hit show that is scheduled to premier next Wednesday.
“I wasn’t planning on going back, but with it being the 20th anniversary of the premier of “Survivor” and the 40th season, I was hoping it would be legendary.” Wilson said. I’m very glad I took this twice-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”
Wilson said it didn’t take much to convince Commonwealth’s Attorney Ronnie Bowling to give him the time off from work.
“I’m lucky to work for such a great boss,” Wilson said of Bowling. “He understood what an amazing opportunity this was.”
Wilson said because of the milestones the season represented, he suspected producers would want to bring past winners together for a super show.
“Winners at War” will feature 20 former winners, including several who have won multiple times.
Along with stepping up the competition, CBS is stepping up the reward, doubling the grand prize to $2 million.
Wilson said while he was able to prepare himself physically before he left to participate in season 37, he didn’t have that chance prior to this season.
“This time I was caught off guard,” Wilson said of preparing for the show that was filmed between May 22 and June 29.
One thing that helped Wilson win in 2018 was his ability to play into the hillbilly stereotype. In addition, none of the players knew he was an attorney, allowing him to fly under the radar.
“People would hear my accent and instantly perceive me as not being very smart,” Wilson said following his win.
“I was camouflaged really well,” he said.
As the game came down to the final weeks, Wilson ran off a series of wins in the final immunity challenges to reach the final vote.
While Wilson admitted he won’t be able to play that angle against the former champions, he has other options.
“I may not be the biggest threat with the legends,” Wilson said. “I think that puts me in a good position.”
Wilson said as a former winner, he has had the opportunity to meet the others at one point or another. However, he is not going into the game with any close friendships, unlike Amber and “Boston” Rob Marino, who are married.
Again, Wilson said that could serve as an advantage for him.
“I have no loyalty to anyone in the game, so I’m a free agent when it comes to alliances,” Wilson said.
“Survivor: Winners at War” will premier at 8 p.m.
Wilson will be at the KSR Sports Bar and Grill in Lexington for a premier watch party. For additional episodes, he will be at Shep’s Place in Corbin.