‘Never seen a bigger sexist pig on TV’
AMONG the cluster of macho dude-bros populating this year's season of Australian Survivor, one man has stood head and shoulders above the rest - personal trainer Zach.
Barely one week in, the behaviour of the mega-fit former Gladiator - particularly towards the female members his tribe, the Contenders - is infuriating viewers.
In last night's episode, Zach fumed about the Contenders' losing streak against the Champions - and put the blame squarely on their female players.
"I really need the girls to pick their game up. Our guys are somewhat competitive against their guys. The girls that they've got are all athletes, and then we've got graphic designers, and mums, and whatever the hell it is Paige does - I don't even know," he complained to his tribe bestie Robbie.
Asked if a woman could ever beat him in a challenge, Zach pondered the question for a minute: "If it's physical strength? Girl, no chance. But if we're looking at, like, a dishwashing challenge? I might be in trouble."
Back at camp, his female tribemates defended themselves as he insinuated they were letting the side down.
"[The Champions] are all elite athletes - they've all been training since they were kids. Now, I know you girls have been putting in some training at, like, F45 and stuff for like five weeks, but you can't compare," he said, earning eyerolls.
With talk like that, you'd expect Zach to walk the walk. But just a few scenes later, it was he who proved the biggest disappointment during a reward challenge against the Champions. Pitted against Steve 'Commando' Willis in a rope tug of war over water, Zach lasted barely a second before ending up in the drink.
His remarks last night had many viewers venting on social media - many in terms we can't republish here:
And Zach's unsavoury behaviour has extended beyond the screen. In an earlier episode, he was heard remarking on fellow contestant Paige's "ass" as she walked past him - in a post to his Instagram account after the episode aired, he "apologised" for the comments he'd made by declaring her "a 6, and I would only say stuff like that to 8's and above".
The 'joke' didn't quite get the reaction he'd hoped - with even past Survivor contestants slamming him in the comments underneath.
"Paige is a 10. You're a 0," wrote season 2 contestant Henry Nicholson.
"F**k you man, we're meant to look out for each other off the island - but this is just gross," wrote season one contestant Matt Tarrant.
Zach has since set his Instagram account to private.
Australian Survivor: Champions vs. Contenders airs 7.30pm Mondays-Thursdays on Ten.