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“Swapping Two People Was Not Fair Whatsoever” – An Interview with Survivor: China’s Aaronby David Bloomberg -- 10/19/2007
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Aaron hadn’t intended to become a leader on Survivor, but once it happened, he seemed okay with it. As for what happened after that, though, he certainly wasn’t very happy about it. Read on to see what Aaron has to say about his time on Survivor.
RealityNewsOnline: Hello, Aaron, and thanks for taking the time to talk to RealityNewsOnline! Starting at the beginning, what was your strategy coming into the game?
Aaron: I wanted to be a really strong force at the very beginning. I kind of made the mistake of becoming the leader and having the target on my back. But I wanted to make sure I had some value in the group, not only in challenges but also in camp life.
RNO: How did that strategy change once you got into the game?
Aaron: You understand that once you become a figure that isn’t flying under the radar, you have the target on your back. You want to be a bit player, but it’s difficult to do when you are one of the stronger competitors.
RNO: If you made it to the merge, would you have likely flipped back to your old Fei Long allies?
Aaron: Yeah, I totally would have flipped back to the old allies. With the whole switch that happened, if I could have made it back, I would have definitely stuck with Fei Long. That was the safe bet, we would have gone up seven to three. You make it to the second phase when your alliances either kick in or you change them up. But you get rid of the other team first and then you go from there.
RNO: What alliances did you know of in Fei Long?
Aaron: I was pretty set with Amanda and I and Todd going to the final three. My goal was definitely to get into a solid alliance that I trusted all the way. I had no intention of betraying them. But I knew Todd was a pretty crafty player. He’s really supersmart. I didn’t trust him further than I could throw him, and Amanda had some of the same feelings. She approached me and asked me about Todd and I said the same thing to her. Making the final three was a goal and you let the chips fall where they may after that.
RNO: So what did you think about Todd’s comments regarding kind of using you?
Aaron: Todd is probably going to end up using everybody on the show, which is entertaining. He is a crafty player. I was kind of thrust into that role, everybody wants some sort of leadership to happen but nobody wants to partake in it. I thought I could pull it off as being that leader, not necessarily dictatorial, but feeling what the tribe wants and needs and going from that. More of like a democracy.
RNO: Did you have any idea the challenge was thrown before Jeff Probst brought it up?
Aaron: When we got back from the challenge, James and I had no idea that the challenge was being thrown. We were completely oblivious. When I got out of the water, Erik and I were exhausted. I just laid there and didn’t look at the puzzle. We had such a lead that I knew there was no problem that we were going to win. It wasn’t actually apparent to James that they were throwing it – no slight against him. When we got back to camp and the nitty gritty came out. I kind of became aware, I’m not sure James ever was, and I knew James and I were on the chopping block. But at the point of the challenge, I had no idea.
RNO: What do you want to say to Jaime and Peih-Gee about throwing the challenge?
Aaron: (Laughs) It’s really difficult. I would never ever imagine that someone would actually throw a challenge to win the game, but that’s exactly what they did. They certainly took a major player out once you get in the merge. We’ll find out next week if the plan works again to get James out. If they do that, they’ll go five to five to the merge and have a much better game plan going in than if they keep James around.
RNO: We saw you and James talking to Erik – was there ever a hope you could sway him against the women?
Aaron: We tried to sway Erik, it was really tight. James and I were really going in with the battle plan that we could take these five people to the top. We kind of thought with Erik and Jaime being Christians, that’s one of the reasons we voted Leslie out because they had that bond together. It seems obvious now that Erik was standing by Jaime ‘til the very end of all ends.
RNO: Do you think the twist of swapping two people from each tribe was fair?
Aaron: (Laughs) No, swapping two people was not fair whatsoever. It was a twist of fate in the game and I was unfortunately caught up in that web. At the time, it was absolutely horrible. I felt things were going well at Fei Long and obviously they were. I felt confident in my alliance. And there was really no stopping us… until the game throws a wrench into the works. I was really upset about going over there. When I was actually leaving, the last few steps, I looked at Todd and he had that look that he hoped I make it to the merge but it just doesn’t look good. And I knew it too.
RNO: Did everybody on Fei Long know that Jean-Robert is a professional poker player? And did anybody care?
Aaron: Jean-Robert being a poker player doesn’t sit that well. There’s no cards on the island. He got on everybody’s nerves. What he was doing was the slow play, coming up from the bottom and willing to take it all. In this game there is such a fine line of who gets to stay and who goes home. It could have easily been Jean-Robert intead of Leslie. And if we had lost the first challenge, there was no doubt in anybody’s mind that Jean-Robert would have been the first to go from Fei-Long.
RNO: What made Fei Long pick Sherea to come over from Zhan Hu?
Aaron: Sherea for sure is one of the strongest woman competitors. She was one of the best in the challenges, she pulled the weight and chopped wood there. We had known that she wasn’t very much of a help during camp life, but that didn’t really affect us because once you get shelter and food and water, which we all had at Fei Long – which was one reason we were so upset at going over to Zhan Hu – you start strategizing and making sure you are well-rested. She was a solid performer at the challenges – she was one of the best out there.
RNO: Do you have anything else you’d like to tell us about your time on Survivor?
Aaron: I’d just like to tell you that it was the number one experience in my life, to put yourself out there to push yourself through the extremes of the heat and lack of food and water. It was an experience unlike any other. And to have a production company that puts together these challenges that you get to compete in and play in as an adult. It was marvelous.
RNO: Thanks again, Aaron!
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out these other recent Survivor: China articles here on RealityNewsOnline:
David Bloomberg is the Editor of RealityNewsOnline and can be reached at RNO@pobox.com.
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