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Originally published Wednesday, February 15, 2012 at 5:31 AM

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Seattle resident, typecast as villain, appears on CBS' 'Survivor'

Seattle's Michael Jefferson appears as one of 18 competitors on the 24th edition of CBS "Survivor" at 8 p.m. Wednesday. Six other top TV picks for Wednesday include "American Idol" on FOX and "Suburgatory" on ABC.

Special to The Seattle Times



8 p.m. Wednesdays on CBS.

Tonight in Prime Time

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Seattle's Michael Jefferson is one of 18 competitors on the 24th edition of CBS' "Survivor" (8 tonight), which features two teams split along gender lines.

Originally from Marysville, Jefferson, 30, took time off from his job as a Wells Fargo banker to film "Survivor" last summer in the South Pacific's Samoan Islands. A 2004 Central Washington University graduate, Jefferson applied to be on "Survivor" three times before getting accepted.

Q: Why did you want to be on this show?

A: The first time I applied for "Survivor," I thought I was getting on and it didn't work out but I knew this was for me. Me not applying was not fulfilling my destiny.

Q: What kind of "Survivor" player did you want to be?

A: I'm straightforward. I wanted to go back to the roots of "Survivor" and show an honest guy can win the game.

Q: But in a video from the show you say you'll backstab if necessary.

A: It's about survival. When you go to tribal council and have to backstab somebody to stay in the game, you have to be willing to do it if you need to.

Q: In his evaluation of the new cast, "Survivor" host Jeff Probst labels you "a villain," but he says you may not be aware you're a villain. Your response?

A: That's kind of my personality. I am the nice guy, but if I need to get my way, I get my way. Any villain, if he needs to make something happen, he can make something happen.

Q: How was being on "Survivor" different than you expected?

A: I'm definitely an outdoorsy kind of guy. I've camped my whole life. I've kayaked. I'm in good shape but when you start the game with nothing but the clothes on your back and no ice chest full of food, things are a little bit different.

Rob Owen: or on Facebook and Twitter as RobOwenTV.

Also on Wednesday

"American Idol," 8 p.m. (Fox): Contestants vie for a spot in the next round.

"Suburgatory," 8:30 p.m. (ABC): Tessa hopes to win the student body president election and change Chatswin High's obsession with sports; when Ryan is injured during a wrestling match, George tries to help him overcome the setback.

"Only in America With Larry the Cable Guy," 9 p.m. (History): Larry tries his hand at mud bogging; tearing down a whole house by hand; Larry meets up with Bubba Blackwell.

"Ghost Hunters," 9 p.m. (Syfy): TAPS investigates claims that the city hall in Providence, R.I., is haunted by a former mayor; a child is traumatized by spirits at his grandparents' home.

"Royal Pains," 10 p.m. (USA): Jack's symptoms catch up with him; Boris' cousin wants to mend fences; Evan offers to help Divya.

"Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," 10 p.m. (NBC): The investigation into a home invasion that ended with two dead leads to a shocking revelation about Detective Rollins.

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