Exclusive: 'Survivor Cambodia: Second Chance' castoff Keith Nale talks
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 12/18/2015
Survivor Cambodia: Second Chance castoff Keith Nale finished the game in fifth place during Wednesday night's two-hour finale on CBS.
Keith got voted out after he declined to use a fake hidden Immunity Idol Kelley Wentworth had made him to try to fool Jeremy Collins, Spencer Bledsoe and Tasha Fox into turning on one another. He and his loyal ally, Kelley, both fell short of making the Final 3.
Jeremy ended up winning the game and the $1 million through a unanimous vote, while both Spencer and Tasha tied for the runner-up spot with zero votes. Keith, who previously competed on Survivor: San Juan del Sur, managed to still beat, however, sixth-place finisher Kimmi Kappenberg.
In an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Thursday, Keith talked about his Survivor experience. Below is what he had to say. Be sure to check our Survivor page for more interviews with Season 31's Final 6 castaways.
Reality TV World: Why did you vote for Jeremy? What did the jury base their vote on?
Keith Nale: I think it was pretty cut and dry. Jeremy was a tough guy and I don't think there was really any other question in my mind.
Reality TV World: Did the jury questions have any impact at all on the vote? It just seemed unusual that everyone went into Tribal Council with an open mind and open vote but then everyone ended up voting for the same person.
Keith Nale: I mean, just flash back and look at Spencer, Tasha and Jeremy. I mean, it was cut and dry to me. If you threw in a couple of different people, I might've thought about it, but that was a no-brainer to me.
Reality TV World: Last night, Stephen Fishbach tweeted that Wentworth would've won if Jeremy had voted out Spencer. Do you agree with that, and why?
Keith Nale: Yeah, I do agree with that. Kelley, a heck of a player. If it was Jeremy, Kelley and Tasha, Kelley gets it. If you throw Kelley, Spencer and Jeremy, Kelley gets my vote. But that's a tough call right there.
Reality TV World: You've acknowledged it wasn't the smartest move to keep your fake idol under wraps when everyone voted you out. Do you think if you had shown it to everyone it would've made the difference? Do you think Jeremy would've gotten rid of Spencer at that point?
Keith Nale: You know, I kind of thought about that. I should've shown it, like, "Hey, this baby right here is with me. Do what you've got to do." But I wasn't going to play it. Period.
Because I think that's cheesy, it never works, I don't want to be seen like, "Well, Keith was grabbing straws there at the end, look what he's trying to do." So, I didn't want to go out like that, but looking back, maybe I should've shown it to them anyway.
Reality TV World: You were shown talking about how you planned to take advantage of your fake idol during confessionals prior to Tribal Council. So what happened? I know you said you wanted to play with integrity, but what changed your mind in that short period of time? You seemed dead set on the idea at first so did some light go off in your mind?
Keith Nale: Yeah, you're right. I think a light went off, and believe me, it was a good looking idol. It's just that, (laughs) I think it's cheesy. I think it's a cheap way out or whatever, and I hadn't been a millionaire in 54 years, so I'd probably make it another 54.
Reality TV World: How close did you actually come to quitting for Kimmi? You got very emotional and I guess I didn't realize you two had bonded that much.
Keith Nale: Yeah, what it was, was that Tribal Council right there went so long. And I thought they were back there making up the rules because it's never gone that far. I said, "Man, they're back there making up rules as we go along." And I said, "I'm out of here! I'm done with this. Let Kimmi take it on out from here."
And that's just the mental and physical stress of this game, so I wasn't thinking straight. It was like, "If you wanted to vote me out, heck I'm done with this."
I'm kind of glad they didn't, but you know, if I didn't win the next time, I was going to go home. So that's kind of how that rocked along. The critical point in this game, I thought, was with [Abi-Maria Gomes] when we were at seven instead of six. Abi went that way and, you know, the rest is history.
Reality TV World: Did you feel underestimated throughout the game? You came so close to winning mostly every Immunity Challenge yet no one seemed to view you as a big threat. You were the only person standing in Joe Anglim's way, for example.
Keith Nale: Exactly! Exactly. The "Amazing Joe," I mean, even if you're coming in second to the "Amazing Joe," nobody really [cares]. It's Joe, it's Joe, it's Joe. And then, Joe finally goes out and I take [immunity] home.
And then I started thinking about it, like, "They might think," like what you just said, "Keith, we need to do something with Keith since Joe's gone." But really, I tried to lay low, do my thing, walk along, maybe win a few challenges here and there, and all that does is get you to No. 5.
Reality TV World: When Spencer was trying to convince Jeremy to take him to the Final 3 over Wentworth, he was so insistent about being able to get the jury to vote for Wentworth to win if Jeremy got rid of him. Do you think he came across arrogant to the jury and maybe offended them through saying he could basically manipulate them to vote for the person he personally deemed most deserving?
Keith Nale: Golly, that Spencer is a sharp little dude. You gotta watch him. He speaks well, but I was kind of with him there for a minute, you know? I think he was speaking the truth, that Jeremy -- and I don't know what he was thinking.
It's like, "Well, Spencer, if you sit there with Jeremy, this is going to happen. And if you sit there with Wentworth, this is going to happen." So, I don't think Spencer had a chance whoever he was sitting by, but I think a lot of people on that jury would've voted for Wentworth.
Reality TV World: If you could've had it your way, what would your ideal Final 3 have been?
Keith Nale: Oh man. Well, I mean, if you want to flash way back, [Jeff Varner] and [Shirin Oskooi], or you know, if it gets down to the Final 6 or 7, you've got to be real careful. I would've loved to see me, Kelley and Kimmi. But that just didn't go our way.
Reality TV World: So you would've gotten rid of Joe? You seemed really tight with him and clearly didn't want to vote him out the night he was sent to Ponderosa, so I was curious as to whether you'd ever go after him.
Keith Nale: Yeah, I liked Joe and I hated to see him go that one time -- especially when he went down [at the Immunity Challenge] like that, but if I was sitting with Joe and Kelley [in the Final 3], well my gosh, I don't have a chance! And everybody knows that.
Reality TV World: You pretty much admittedSurvivor isn't fun but it's quite the adventure. Would you ever be interested in playing again or was that enough for you this time?
Keith Nale: I think yeah, see, I'm going backwards. I come in fourth in San Juan Del Sur and I come in fifth this time. So, I'm going the wrong direction! You know, if I was 28, 35, or 43, maybe so, but if they call me tomorrow, I'm pretty much done.
Check Reality TV World's Survivor page for more interviews with Season 31's Final 6 castaways.