Exclusive: Patrick Bolton talks about how he knew Ali Elliott before 'Survivor' and his blindside betrayal
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 10/12/2017
Patrick Bolton was voted out of the Hustlers tribe during the third episode of Survivor's 35th season called Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers on CBS.
Patrick, a 24-year-old small business owner from Lanett, AL who currently resides in Auburn, AL, was voted out of the "Yawa" tribe on Day 8 through a unanimous vote after the tribe finished in last place at the third Immunity Challenge of the season.
Patrick cast his vote, however, for Lauren Rimmer, a 35-year-old fisherman from Beaufort, NC.
During an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Thursday, Patrick talked about his short-lived Survivor experience. Below is the initial portion of what he had to say.
Reality TV World: You seemed completely blindsided once Jeff Probst revealed the votes. Is that accurate to say? And going into Tribal Council, did you assume every single person, except for Lauren, was on your side?
Patrick Bolton: Yeah, I was definitely blindsided to say the least. I thought going in to Tribal Council, Devon, Ryan and Ali were all voting with me and not against me. So my emotions were definitely a true statement of what I was actually going through right in that moment.
Reality TV World: You were pretty angry and disappointed at the time of your vote-off...
Reality TV World: (Laughs) Right. And you called everyone "awful" on your way out. So it sounds like you took the blindside personally, as a real betrayal, rather than just a game move?
Patrick Bolton: Oh, definitely a betrayal! You know, game moves, the game starts as soon as we start on the first day, but that was not a strategic game move. I think maybe they were thinking, "Alright, we can take Lauren. She's going to be an easy vote -- someone to just join up with."
But, you know, I was there to play the game, and I was there and actually present. Lauren was definitely playing the game; she got me voted out, so I can't shame her there. But I felt like I should've been definitely making it to the next episode and not going to the Survivor gods. They definitely chewed me up and spit me out.
Reality TV World: What hurt you the most about your elimination? I'm assuming it was Ali's vote, so if that's the case, did you harbor any hard feelings toward her for a while -- or even now, to this day?
Patrick Bolton: No, I can't let anything like that hold me down for too long. We make these decisions and you've got to live past them. Ryan and Ali, together, were the hardest votes for me to realize. Going in and through -- up until every day prior to me getting voted out, I really trusted Ali. And she was kind of like my lifeline.
I looked at her as, "You're going to vote with me, not against me. And we're going to play this together, but quietly, because we don't want people to know we know each other." And so, it was a shock.
And, you know, I thought I had really created a friendship with Ryan and created, you know, something that would not be broken over Lauren being frustrated with me being obnoxious, or whatever it is that she thinks, that I was too extra.
And so Ryan and Ali, they kind of got under my skin there, and I try not to let anything bother me, but that definitely frustrated me for probably the next several days. And I was definitely, definitely mad at them.
Reality TV World: Simone Nguyen revealed that you and Ali actually knew each other during college at Auburn University before appearing on Survivor, that you helped Ali move during college and you lived across the street from each other. Could you confirm that's the case? And could you elaborate on what your pre-game relationship with Ali was like?
Patrick Bolton: Yes, that's the first time someone's bringing up the fact that we moved her in. That is true. And we did live four or five doors down from Ali. In our beginning days of starting our moving company, Ali was one of the people that we had been able to help get into her apartment.
But our relationship was brief, you know, we were associates, we weren't close friends. I mean, we were friends, we would say hello or whatever when we saw each other. But as far as being very close, that really wasn't our relationship.
And going into a game where you have nothing but strangers, and you have someone that you know and have talked to before and assume you can trust, man, I thought I totally had her on my side. So, Ali definitely disappointed me there, but you know, I know she had to make a strategic game [decision].
As you could see in the second or third episode, she was coming up to me and saying, "Your name is being thrown around. You've got to cool it."
And I just said, "This might not be the best for my gameplay. I might not make friendships if I'm not me personally, so I just want to balance that line by not being too much but also being able to still cultivate those relationships and be able to trust someone."
Reality TV World: How much knowledge did you have about Ali's Survivorplans and vice versa? Did you apply together or separately? Was it just an incredible coincidence you both ended up on the sameSurvivor season?
Patrick Bolton: Oh! We were nowhere near talking about it. It had been a year to two years since I had even spoken to Ali. I get out there, I've gone through my interviews and am pretty much getting ready to fly to Fiji, and I see Ali come out of the elevator and my mouth hits the floor!
I'm like, "She can't be with us," like, "She's got to be somehow coincidentally staying at the same hotel and she's just here." And she's with Kaitlyn, you know, one of the CBS representatives, and I'm like, "No way! She's actually here with us."
I was floored. I didn't know what to say; I didn't know what to do. I know they have alternates ready to take our place if they need to, so the last thing I was going to do was spill the beans that I know Ali.
I came to find out later that she told -- as soon as she saw me, that we were associates and friends, and what we needed to do about it. And we ended up on the same tribe! We're both Hustlers. Who would've expected that coincidence actually happened?!
Be sure to check back with Reality TV World soon for more from our exclusive Survivor interview with Patrick Bolton.