After what looked like 15 miserable days in Nicaragua, Survivor said goodbye to two more strong players this week when both tribes, La Flor and Espada, were informed there would be double Tribal Councils and two players' fates would be sealed.
With members of both tribes competing for individual immunity at a ring-toss challenge, the coveted prizes went to Holly (Espada) and Jill (La Flor). And with Brenda masterminding the pecking order at La Flor, it was soon apparent that 26-year-old Kelly B. had the biggest target on her back. Though never a hindrance, Brenda was convinced Kelly’s artificial leg would garner sympathy votes should she make it far in the game. It was something that would get no argument from NaOnka, who earlier in the series made her feelings about Kelly quite clear by pushing her over to steal a Immunity Idol clue.
“I was like a punching bag for her,” Kelly tells In Touch. “The reunion may be hard, as I may not be able to restrain myself and say something I’ll regret. But the general population stands behind me and has said everything I would want to say to her and more, so there is nothing left to say at this point.”
Meanwhile over at Espada, it’s Benry who reveals he wants 41-year-old Yve out, telling the others, “I don’t want to take her to the merge. She’s a smart player.” And despite older player Dan admitting he was done with the game, it was decided Yve would be the next victim at Tribal Council, given that Dan wasn’t a threat. “Oh, he wanted to go home numerous times,” Yve tells In Touch. “Marty fought hard to keep him, but I guess it’s more respectable in the end to win against some guy who has no desire or care to be in the game and wants to leave.”
Though both players tell In Touch the conditions in Nicaragua were tough, both would return to Survivor in a heartbeat. But not before Yve does one thing: “I’d read Lord of the Flies before doing Survivor again,” she laughs. “It’s all about the people.”
For more with Kelly B and Yve, click here.
Name: Kelly Bruno
Eliminated: October 20
How are you feeling after watching the events unfold on TV?
Kelly: It’s hard to see how it all went down, as you don’t know what is going on in people's mind at the time. There was a lot I could have done differently. I could have targeted NaOnka earlier instead of Brenda, and after the tribe swap, if I’d realized what was going on, I would've been more aggressive in making alliances and making a stronger connection with Marty and Jill. I was the odd one out. Fabio is clearly infatuated with Marty's ‘grandmaster’ status, so we could have been four strong.
How bad was it for you out there?
Kelly: The conditions were rough. You think of Nicaragua and how it’s tropical and 95 degrees. It was not like that at all. It was quite chilly at night, and we had a hard time keeping the fire going, as our wood was not very good. There was very little to eat, and the fruit we found didn’t taste very good. Oh, it was the rainy season, too, so it was worse. I’d go back, though!
It was mentioned often you were a threat because of sympathy votes. Do you agree with that?
Kelly: My whole reason for playing was to prove that I am no different. I don’t think I am any more disabled than anyone else, nor do I deserve the money more than anyone else. I am there for the same reasons, and to treat me differently because they thought I might get a sympathy vote…? I mean, they are voting. At the end of the day, in the final three, they have full control over whom they vote for. So it’s funny they worried about that when they are the ones having sympathy for me — I didn’t understand that. They just wanted a reason to get me out early. I hid my leg for the first couple of days and worked really hard before people even knew I was an amputee. They knew I meant business and would play a physical game.
After NaOnka pushed you over to get the Immunity Idol clue, was there any retribution on your part that we did not see?
Kelly: Oh, you saw most of our interaction. I’m not the type of person who responds, and that is what she wanted. I saw her do the same thing to Fabio, and he blew up. I didn’t want to give her the satisfaction of a response out of me. I played passive. Watching it, it was hard to sit there after realizing I wanted to punch her in the face, but couldn’t. I wanted to use her emotional reaction against her, so reacting the same way would not have benefited me. The good thing is that America sided with me, and now I have someone to do it for me.
Have you made peace with NaOnka?
Kelly: I don’t think she wants to run into me on the street. I have made peace with myself, and I didn’t take things personally while out there, though it was hard not to. It was something she was dealing with and taking out on me. She didn’t like Fabio because of his hair? It had nothing to do with him, it was a personal thing and her issue, and she just took it out on me.
Name: Yve Rojas
Eliminated: October 20
How are you feeling after watching the events unfold?
Yve: It’s funny, after living it once then to watch with friends and family, it’s just as heartbreaking. It feels like a defeat all over again — only intensified. I know for sure it was a lack of communication with Holly that led to my downfall. I communicated well with the others
We didn’t see you form a really strong alliance with anyone — was that the case?
Yve: I actually had a really strong alliance from the beginning, but for whatever reason it wasn’t edited that way. I was aligned with Marty, and we communicated a lot in Spanish, so maybe that is why it wasn’t shown. It was my decision to bring Jill into that alliance and Marty’s to bring Dan in. I was very happy before the tribe swap and maybe became too complacent about what Marty and I had. After the swap, the game was back on.
Did Dan want to go home? One minute he wants to quit, the next he’s telling everyone he doesn’t.
Yve: Oh, he wanted to go home numerous times. Marty fought hard to keep him, but I guess it’s more respectable in the end to win against some guy who has no desire or care to be in the game and wants to leave. Most of us were so proud and blessed for the opportunity to play. He tried to impress the younger members with his stories, and if you have great achievements, great. But humbleness is something Dan does not possess. Just don’t curse the game when there are others who want to play.
How bad was it for you out there?
Yve: It was brutal. The area we were in was almost evil. Everything bit you, the thorns in the sand stuck. The bugs. The fruit was inedible. Not to mention the cold rain. It was rough. But I have a fascination with inclement weather, so I am ready to go back out there again.
You also had to sit through the other tribe feasting as your fate in the game was decided. How hard was that?
Yve: I knew food was going to be an issue. I was hungry and quite frankly, the smell and them feasting was a bit gluttonous. If they’d had bread, wine and some cheese, I would have walked over and taken some out of their hands. They hadn’t eaten, so I knew they’d be sick afterward. But them sitting there listening… I was really missing my old tribemates.