Malcolm Freberg, a 25-year-old bartender from Hermosa Beach, CA, was voted out of his Enil Edam tribe during Survivor: Caramoan -- Fans vs. Favorites' eleventh episode Wednesday night.
Malcolm was voted out of his tribe at the CBS reality series' 26th edition's eleventh Tribal Council, the fourth time the new Enil Edam tribe had an elimination vote.
In an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Thursday, Malcolm talked about his Survivor experience. Below is the first half of his interview. Check back with Reality TV World on Friday for the concluding portion.
Reality TV World: I feel like I just talked to you a few months ago. Oh wait, I did. (Laughs)
Malcolm Freberg: I cannot delve into Erik's psyche and explain what's going on in that head of his. I was out there for a month with him and I still to this day do not understand what was going on. Some days, he was totally onboard, and the next, he was like off swimming. He was asking for people to point at a flag to tell him how to vote, like I don't know what's going on with that kid.
Sherri, I think, I mean just like the logic of it -- kind of 50/50 I thought she would go along with it. Strategically, I think it made more sense for her to come along with us. I really believe a big part of it was horribly, horribly, horribly she hated Reynold and Eddie from the early days with the "Fans."
I knew that they like butted heads earlier in the game, but I had no idea it was so bad until I saw them on TV a couple months ago. But I do think that played a role in her decision.
Reality TV World: Do you think the physical-threat aspect played any role in which Erik and Sherri might've figured they were better off in an alliance with weaker people versus potentially joining an alliance with yourself, Reynold and Eddie -- who are all obviously huge threats to win individual immunity?
Malcolm Freberg: I could -- you see, Erik and Sherri are such polar opposites. I could see Erik maybe thinking that way, like he didn't want to deal with trying to beat us the entire game. But he has to be confident, like he can compete. I see what you're saying. But Sherri, in almost the reverse logic, should never worry about that because she's never going to win anything.
She was horrible at challenges. Sherri couldn't do a stinkin' thing right for the whole entire month we were there. So [that] shouldn't have been on Sherri's radar at all because she wasn't winning anything.
Reality TV World: So would you say you were blindsided then or not? What had you gone in there expecting to happen at Tribal?
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Malcolm Freberg: I kind of gave my odds 50/50 going into it. So it wasn't a blindside per se. I thought that like... I knew that if it came up a three-three-three tie, I was toast. So once that happened, I was like, "Welp, that's it!" But blindsided? Not really.
Reality TV World: In your final words you said you felt so safe that you wouldn't have played the idol even if you had found it. Can you elaborate on that more -- why had you felt so safe, how had you been expecting Tribal to play out, and how many more Tribal Councils do you think you would have gone before playing that idol if you had it?
Malcolm Freberg: I have no idea why I said that. I completely disassociate myself with that comment. I don't remember saying that. (Laughs) I just saw that last night and I was like, "What the hell was I talking about?!" I don't know what that was! Maybe I was trying to rationalize in my head not finding it. I can't claim any knowledge of that comment.
But had I found it, I would've been working the entire situation completely differently. It would've been a much different dynamic going into that vote. But I don't know exactly what I would have done or what I would not have done, but I wouldn't have gone home with an idol in my pocket. So I don't know what the hell that was. (Laughs)
Reality TV World: Some viewers are wondering why you didn't just try to dig for the hidden Immunity Idol despite Andrea Boehlke following you around. Basically the thinking is that you would have been better off looking for the idol and taking the chance that she found it instead of you than not looking for it at all. What are your thoughts on that? Did you try that, but it just didn't get shown?
Malcolm Freberg: Well I dug for a long, long time before she came down. That was like a day or maybe even two days after I had gotten the clue. So it was like very lovely television, but I had been digging for hours and hours and hours.
My hands were covered in blisters and bleeding from digging with a shell next to like every tree on the left side of the well -- or whatever that note said -- and I hadn't found it. So when she came down, that was kind of the straw that broke my back sort of thing. And I kind of just thought, "Screw it. I'm going to bluff like I have it, at least that way I guarantee that I can get the split vote."
Reality TV World: So did she really end up following you around like...
Reality TV World: So she did basically shadow you then from that point all the way until Tribal Council? (Laughs)
Malcolm Freberg: What happened was I stopped looking. So that, I think -- and I might be wrong on this -- but I think that scene ultimately took place the morning before the Immunity Challenge, I think.
But whatever it was, there's this whole scene online that someone pointed out to me where I did this whole grandiose thing where I bluffed like I had found the idol and she was right there with [Brenda Lowe] and I had the wrapping from the old idol.
And all it was, was to get them to -- unless they didn't 100% percent believe -- they would be forced to split the vote. So I had this little scheme that didn't make the actual show, but thought beyond 50% certainty that I had found an idol obviously to split the vote. And that's all I really went for at that point.
Reality TV World: Yeah, I think we saw Andrea say she was "80% sure" you had found an idol at Tribal Council.
Reality TV World: So it sounds like that's how you feel she got that impression -- was [via] the scene you are referring to that didn't make it on the air, correct?
Malcolm Freberg: Right, right. I tried to bluff and apparently it worked well enough. But it didn't end up mattering because Sherri didn't flip.
Reality TV World: I wanted to ask you a more general question about Andrea. Were you surprised to see her be that aggressive and strategic? Because maybe it's just the editing, but we really haven't seen that side of her up until now.
Malcolm Freberg: You know, I kind of really wasn't. I remember when we were all sitting before the game started and we had finally seen each other's faces the two days before, I had like copious notes on how I thought everyone would play the game. And Andrea, I had written down, "She's going to be hyper-aggressive."
It goes back to her first season. I think she took a lot of flack for not doing anything. I think she played like a very under-the-radar kind of subtle -- like this sweet little girl on the beach -- game, who could win challenges.
And she was trying to do an image makeover this season and really try to come out of the gate strong. She was doing a good job and she's playing really aggressively and pretty well. So you know, good [for] her, but I actually wasn't surprised by it.
Above is the first half of our exclusive interview with Malcolm. Check back with Reality TV World on Friday for the concluding portion. About The Author:Elizabeth Kwiatkowski
Elizabeth Kwiatkowski is Associate Editor of Reality TV World and has been covering the reality TV genre for more than a decade.