Exclusive: 'Survivor: Cagayan -- Brawn vs. Brains vs. Beauty' castoff Spencer Bledsoe talks (Part 2)
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 06/05/2014
Spencer Bledsoe, a 21-year-old student from Chicago, IL, finished Survivor: Cagayan -- Brawn vs. Brains vs. Beauty in fourth place.
Spencer lost to third-place finisher Kassandra "Kass" McQuillen, runner-up Yung "Woo" Hwang and winner Tony Vlachos. He was voted out of his Solarrion tribe at the game's Final 4 Tribal Council because everyone believed him to be the biggest threat still in the game at that point. Spencer began the season on the Brains tribe.
In an exclusive interview with Reality TV World, Spencer talked about his Survivor experience. Below is the concluding portion. Click here to read the first half. Also, check our Survivor homepage for more interviews with the season's Final 4 castaways.
Reality TV World: When did you start suspecting there was going to be a Final 2 instead of a Final 3? Was it when Jeff Probst made an announcement or lack thereof at the Immunity Challenge or were you already thinking that could happen even before that point?
Spencer Bledsoe: Yeah, it was pretty much right when you saw it. It was when I realized I needed to make some kind of pitch to save myself, and that was pretty much the only -- like it kind of came out of necessity, because I felt like, if it's a Final 3, I'm not going to have too good of an argument here, but if it's a Final 2, then there is an argument to be made.
And then I started putting it together in saying, "Not only did Jeff not say his little line, but it's Day 37 and they never have a Final 4 Immunity Challenge if it's a Final 3 before Day 38." So it was definitely a combination of those things, and I really did figure it out pretty much right when you saw. There wasn't a big delay there.
Reality TV World: Could you explain why Jeff Probst automatically assumed you'd be the first person voted out of the game when you got cast on the show? What did you say during the casting process to make him come away with that opinion? (Laughs)
Spencer Bledsoe: I think we just argued a lot and I think he saw me as very combative. He saw me as abrasive; He saw me as cocky. And I think he thought that I would rub people the wrong way. I think people who watch my intro videos definitely would often echo the same feelings, and you know, me in casting probably was even more extreme. So I don't blame him for thinking that at all.
Reality TV World: And your mom and dad thought the same thing as Jeff? (Laughs)
Spencer Bledsoe: (Laughs) Well, my mom did apparently! (Laughs) I don't know. I think that they definitely thought I had it in me, but you know, I was 21-years-old and I had very little life experience and I was potentially a little over-confident. And so, I could totally see how even my family would not have the most faith.
Reality TV World: Would you mind sharing a little bit of what was in that letter Jeff wrote you? Did you get a chance to open it, and if so, did anything stand out or surprise you?
Spencer Bledsoe: Yeah, you know what? I actually haven't opened it yet. I've been really busy with interviews and it's been kind of a whirlwind, so I have to, you know, I'm not going to rush it. I'm not going to -- I need to get some alone time, make sure I'm ready. Because I can't just open it casually.
Reality TV World: You've got to set the mood. (Laughs)
Spencer Bledsoe: Yeah! I got to set the mood. I've got to light some candles, I've got to get some music [going] or something, get a glass of wine. It has to be an experience, you know, reading Probst's letter. It's not just any letter.
Reality TV World: Tell me what happened at the Final 4 Immunity Challenge. You seemed to be really good at puzzles, so many viewers thought you'd be a shoo-in to win that challenge once you gained a lead on the others. So what do you think happened there? Did you get overconfident or something?
Spencer Bledsoe: No, that was a really tough puzzle. As you saw, there were multiple dimensions to it, so it was tricky. I ended up -- it was a puzzle where you could have a solution that looked right that wasn't right, and I -- a couple of times -- would do that and then build a lot of things ontop of it and realize that all the work I had done was a moot point and had to be erased because of a mistake I had made earlier. A
nd, you know, Kass -- two things with Kass.
A.) She had the advantage of getting to see us try to do it before she tried, so she was able to look at our puzzles. And she saw that all three of us had very different things going on and none of us were particularly close to solving it, so she was in a pretty good position once she got on the puzzle.
B.) Kass is really, really good at puzzles. I have to hand it to her. She kicked my ass on that and she is, by far and away, the best person at puzzles on the season.
So, I think it was partially a matter of a bad run on my part, but also just a matter of, she's better at puzzles than me.
Reality TV World: How shocked were you that Woo decided to take Tony to the end instead of Kass? And do you think Woo is simply too nice and good-hearted to play Survivor?
Spencer Bledsoe: (Laughs) Yeah, I think that's kind of it. I felt so bad for Woo last night, you know, I can't even imagine what he was feeling seeing how clear-cut it was. Because it's usually not that clear-cut. Usually, there's some if's, and's, or but's.
But really, for him, he literally gave away a million dollars. I have some things that sting from Survivor, but I can't even imagine that feeling. I think he's probably -- you probably hit the nail on the head. He's probably a little bit too loyal and too kind-hearted for it.
Reality TV World: You and Kass had a really strange relationship during the game. You were tight at times and hated each other times. You also called her a "brain-dead weasel" last night.
Spencer Bledsoe: Yeah. (Laughs)
Reality TV World: Looking back on things, what's your opinion of Kass as a person and a player? And where do you guys stand now?
Spencer Bledsoe: Um, so I mean, Kass and I are on speaking terms. So, we don't have any beef, at least I don't think so. But, as a player, I still don't think she's a very good player. My opinions are pretty similar to the ones I spout. But, as a person, I think she has a lot of good qualities. I just don't think they necessarily shine under those tough circumstances, and I think that's probably why we didn't get along.
Reality TV World: When I talked to Trish Hegarty last week, she said Kass got you going with some talk about college. Can you elaborate on that for me? What was that all about?
Spencer Bledsoe: Yeah, I actually -- I saw that too and I was wondering where she was going with that. Because I'm not sure. I honestly can't remember anything rude Kass said to me with regards to my future plans, so yeah, sorry. I don't really remember.
Reality TV World: How disappointed were you to find out there was no fan-favorite cash prize this season? Because based on the audience's reaction to you, it seemed like you would've had a great chance to win that.
Spencer Bledsoe: Yeah, yeah, I probably would've been in the running. So, it would've been nice, but you know, they also didn't do one for Blood vs. Water, so I wasn't expecting it. And the silver lining is that "Rob Has a Podcast" has a fan-favorite reward, so I was able to win that, which was very cool. No $100,000, but overall, I have a lot more to be thankful for than to be angry about.
Reality TV World: How were you cast on Survivor? How did you end up on the show?
Spencer Bledsoe: Okay, so I applied for about a year-and-a-half ago, or about two years ago. I applied for the show and I was a little bit late in the casting process at the time, so although I got a callback, it didn't pan out that time.
And I had to kind of put a pin in it and re-enter the process for Season 27 and 28. And I did that, and luckily, it went my way. I was able to go to finals in LA and I was able to interview, and I guess some of the arguments I got in might've helped me get cast. It worked out and I got very lucky.
Reality TV World: You're obviously a huge fan of the game. Did Survivor turn out to be everything you thought it would be? And is it safe to say you'd want to play again if you had the chance?
Spencer Bledsoe: Yeah. Yes and yes. Absolutely. It was an awesome experience -- everything I thought. It was just surreal from beginning to end going through all the things for the first time, you know, Day 1 was surreal, going to my first challenge was surreal, going to my first Tribal Council was surreal.
And part of it was casting. It was surreal just to sit face-to-face with Jeff Probst and Mark Burnett. And this week, the reunion was very surreal as well. So, it's been a wild experience -- everything I had hoped for -- and an awesome experience I would definitely do again.
Above is the concluding portion of Spencer's exclusive interview with Reality TV World. Click here to read the first half. Also, check our Survivor homepage for more interviews with the season's Final 4 castaways.