Friday, February 15, 2008

Jenna Morasca

Happy Birthday to Jenna Morasca (born February 15, 1981 near Pittsburgh) is a reality TV contestant who was the million-dollar grand prize winner of Survivor: The Amazon.

Originally part of the all-female Jaburu tribe, Jenna was not immediately targeted. Despite initially being disappointed at being on an all-female tribe, Jenna flourished and rose to a power position. She almost immediately bonded with fellow contestant Heidi Strobel, which led to a long-standing alliance. In Episode 2, Jenna joined the majority of her tribe with voting out weak-link Janet Koth. She then created an alliance with the dominant female and leader of Jaburu, Deena Bennett as well as Shawna Mitchell. In Episode 4, this new alliance targeted arguably the strongest female, Joanna Ward, and recruited deaf contestant Christy Smith when Shawna would not commit, claiming she was too weak to continue. The alliance would not honor Shawna's wish to be voted out, and successfully ousted Joanna.

In Episode 5, due to her being the youngest female, Jenna became the ambassador of Jaburu, choosing new tribes along with opposing all-male tribe Tambaqui's ambassador and youngest member Dave Johnson. She managed to keep Deena and Shawna on her tribe, but lost Heidi to Tambaqui. However, she gained three males (Alex Bell, Matthew von Ertfelda and Rob Cesternino) that eventually became a major part in Jenna's alliance. In Episode 6, Jenna joined Deena, Rob and Matthew to vote off Shawna, believing she was too close to Alex and had already betrayed the alliance once.

When the two tribes merged into one (Jacare), Jenna was once again reunited with Heidi. At the first individual immunity challenge, the pair caused major controversy when they offered to take off all their clothes for some Peanut Butter and Oreos, despite them not needing to take their clothes off for food and the fact that the host, Jeff Probst, never offered such a deal. Despite this, their wish was granted and Jenna got exactly what she wanted, showing her power to do so. Jenna and her alliance immediately targeted dominant male Roger Sexton, believing he was demanding and sexist.

At the Final 9, Jenna's alliance again targeted a dominant male, Dave Johnson, due to him being part of Roger's broken alliance and seeing him as a threat. At the Final 8, Deena shocked Jenna and other alliance members when she expressed doubt about alliance member Alex, believing he was too much of a challenge threat. When the next target Matthew won immunity, Jenna, Heidi, Alex and Rob turned on Deena, due to her plotting against Alex, and she was voted out. At the Final 7, Rob was doubtful of his position in the game in his current alliance. Believing he could not achieve more than fourth place with Jenna, Heidi and Alex, he recruited the non-alliance members, Christy, Matthew and Butch Lockley to his side and betrayed his old alliance by successfully voting out Alex. Both Jenna and Heidi were stunned and hurt by the move, criticizing Rob as being very deceitful.

At the Final 6, Jenna and Heidi scrambled to stay in the game, trying hard to break up Rob's alliance by convincing Christy to side with them. When Christy would not commit to either side, Rob approached the girls with an offer to get rid of Christy. Because it meant that the targets were off their own backs, both Jenna and Heidi accepted and Christy was voted off. At the Final 5, Jenna and Heidi found themselves on the outside once again. The three-man alliance of Butch, Rob and Matthew targeted Heidi, believing her to be more strong and threatening than the then-sick Jenna, and she was voted out.

At the Final 4, Jenna found herself facing an uphill battle against the three-man alliance. Despite this, Jenna managed to win immunity, securing her place in the Final 3. Jenna sided with Rob and Matthew to vote out the popular Butch. At the Final 3, Matthew approached Jenna for a possible Final 2 alliance to which Jenna agreed. At the immunity challenge, Matthew immediately stepped down, knowing both Jenna and Rob would take him to the Final 2. Sensing he was in trouble, Rob tried to strike a deal with Jenna, but she did not budge. Jenna went on to win immunity and she voted Rob off, believing she could more easily win against Matthew, but tricking the jury into thinking she was taking the harder to beat competitor, gaining her respect on the jury.

In the end, Jenna Morasca beat out Matthew von Ertfelda in a massive 6-1 vote to become the Sole Survivor. She managed to gain the votes of Dave Johnson, Deena Bennett, Alex Bell, Christy Smith, Heidi Strobel and Rob Cesternino, the most surprising being Christy who, when voted off, claimed she would never vote for Jenna (or Heidi) to win the million dollars.

Due to her efforts in Survivor: The Amazon, Jenna was invited back to play once more on Survivor: All-Stars. As part of the Mogo Mogo tribe, Jenna and her tribe won immunity in the first two episodes. However, in episode three, Jenna decided to quit the game, regretting leaving her dying mother, who was in a battle with cancer. Jenna claimed she felt a vibe that her mom needed her at home. She withdrew from the game, rushing to her mother's bedside. Carla Morasca, Jenna's mother, died eight days later. Jenna is the only person in Survivor history to appear on two seasons and never be voted out in either.

* Jenna Morasca had a minor role in the made-for-TV movie The Scorned.

* Jenna is the first, and so far only, Survivor to have played twice and still never get voted out of the game. However, as for the all the other winners who have played twice, she did not win twice, as she quit Survivor: All-Stars to be with her dying mother.

* Jenna Morascas famous strip with fellow contestant Heidi Strobel led to a spread in Playboy magazine, a spread that earned her yet another million dollars.

* Morasca also appeared near-nude in an ad for PETA with her boyfriend, Survivor: Africa winner Ethan Zohn. The ad combated wearing fur and followed the slogan "We'd Rather Go Naked Than Wear Fur!"

* Jenna is the youngest Sole Survivor (at the time of taping).

* Jenna was a contestant on a special episode of Fear Factor, which starred former Reality TV contestants. It aired on February 28, 2005. She was eliminated in the second round by Omarosa Manigault-Stallworth. Her boyfriend Ethan Zohn finished second to Ryan Sutter.

* Jenna appeared on the premiere episode of The Celebrity Paranormal Project on VH1, along with Gary Busey and several others.

* Jenna and Ethan have recently appeared as guest sous chefs on the Food Network show Dinner: Impossible Island episode.

* Jenna is currently tied with Kelly Wiglesworth from Borneo for the most Individual Immunity wins by a female player in one season with four.

* Jenna is so far the only player in Survivor history to play twice and never be voted out (she won her season and quit on Survivor All-Stars.)

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