‘Survivor’ Castaway Ali: ‘I Don’t Think I Know (Chrissy) on a Personal Level’

‘Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers’ (CBS)

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“Make new friends, but keep the old. One is silver, the other is gold.”

Who knew the Girl Scouts were capable of such strong “Survivor” advice.

Ali Elliott failed to learn that lesson when she got too close to Roark for Ryan’s liking. The morning after her elimination I had a chance to ask her about her argument with Ryan, her alliance with Roark, and Chrissy lie that may have gone to far…

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Gordon Holmes: You and Ryan got into a heated argument after the Roark Tribal. And recently we’ve been seeing the wronged party take a more laid-back approach to the blindside. Was that even an option for you, or were you so upset that you had to express yourself?
Ali Elliott: We’re heading back and I’m thinking, “They got me.” I said, “OK, what was the deal there?” Just talking, just like this. And he started to deflect right away. I was still trying to stay calm. And I didn’t feel the need to take him aside because these other two people sat there and saw exactly what happened. In my mind he had already picked them. Whatever he was going to say, he could say in front of them. He started to get really defensive. Even in the moment, I still don’t think I got all that heated. But he was acting like it was all my doing and that started to get me really upset. Tell me why you did it, don’t try to blame it on me. It exploded into something I didn’t want. But, I was happy that JP and Chrissy could see.
Holmes: Did he ever approach you with the idea of getting rid of Roark?
Elliott: I wanted to do what was best for our game and he had never brought up Roark.

Holmes: Do you think that’s a flaw in Ryan’s game that he wasn’t able to handle that situation better?
Elliott: I think so. It was the first time that I saw Ryan look uncomfortable. And I had no idea about the secret…hidden…what is it called?
Holmes: That would be the super idol…or something.
Elliott: (Laughs) I had no idea about the super idol. And I thought, we’re set. We had two people, and I had a gut feeling that we were going to merge after three Tribals. We only need to win one challenge. We have two people who are expendable. And to this day it still makes sense. And I still don’t understand why he couldn’t have filled me in on this relationship with Chrissy. Not only would he have had me, but he still would’ve had her. And I think I’d be a better ally moving forward than JP.

Holmes: Back on the Hustlers tribe, it looked like you were interested in working with Simone or Patrick, but you ultimately stuck with Ryan and Devon. What was behind those decisions?
Elliott: For both of those, it was always going to be Simone and Patrick. You want to make sure you make the right decision, so you do play devil’s advocate with yourself. It looked like I was indecisive, but I always knew what I was going to do. I was close with Patrick due to our pre-established relationship, but I knew the game and I felt like he was no longer benefitting me. I thought Lauren was more level-headed, she got along with people better. I would’ve loved to work with Patrick and Lauren, but they didn’t get along. But, both Ryan and Devon were even-keeled people. You could talk to them, run things past them.

Holmes: It was unclear what your relationship was like with Chrissy.
Elliott: Chrissy came up to me right away and said “I really like you and I want to work with you.” Already in my head I’m thinking, “I don’t really need Chrissy, but I want to keep this option open.” Chrissy was very, “This is what I think we should do, and this is why we should do it.” She wasn’t acting like she was on the same ground as me. She was saying, “This is what it’s going to be.” And that made me really uncomfortable. I wanted to play the game with people and not have people play at me. I wanted to be in a relationship. Work together, bounce around ideas. She was very straightforward. “Roark has to go, and that’s that.” Well, why does Roark have to go? Should we do a girl alliance? Should I stick with Ryan? My plan was to get to the merge and we can start playing there. People were so worried that there were so many healers, but I thought I’d be fine as long as I got to the merge. So, she rubbed me the wrong way. And she hated Roark from the get-go. I don’t know if hate is too strong a word, but she didn’t like Roark. You could just tell.
Holmes: And what was it like after Roark was eliminated?
Elliott: Chrissy and I ended up bonding. You saw, her hair was braided all the time. (Laughs) That night after the deal with Ryan, I was broken. I didn’t sleep, I laid there and stared at the fire. The next morning I went looking for an idol. I could already see them stalking me in the woods. And when I came back to camp, it was just me and Chrissy and she said, “I don’t think you should feel like you’re on the outs.” So, I was trying to sell myself at that point. “I made a mistake, I was stupid. And I’m still useful. I have a great social game and can bring in people you need.” So, we ended up bonding. Even during the pizza we shared things about our family and the game. At one point…and obviously now…she’d lied so well that I thought I might’ve squeezed back in there. But, there was one thing…and I know this is a game…but would someone lie about that?
Holmes: On this show? Yes.
Elliott: Well, I’m really close to my family. They mean everything to me, like most people, and we’d talked about the family visit. I told her I’d bring my sister. We’re so close, we’re best friends. And she said, “We’re so set. We’re going to get through this to the merge and we’re going to get to the family visit. And I cannot wait to see you run and jump into your sister’s arms.”
Holmes: Oof…
Elliott: And I was thinking, for someone to have so much confidence in this relationship after something bad had happened, I thought, maybe this could work. Why would you lie about something like that? But, it happened. (Laughs)

Holmes: Alright word association time. Let’s start with Roark.
Elliott: Roark is brilliant. She’s probably one of the smartest people I have met under the age of 30. Her being out there was like a game to me. I love to learn and she’s so smart and knows a little about everything.
Holmes: JP?
Elliott: He’s a great guy. But he’d do great on “Naked and Afraid.” He knows how to survive, and he doesn’t need a social game for “Naked and Afraid.”
Holmes: And he’s already got the naked part down.
Elliott: (Laughs)
Holmes: Simone.
Elliott: She’s very sweet, but she didn’t understand “Survivor.” I think she understood it from a viewer’s standpoint. I do love her very much. I just don’t think this was the game for her.
Holmes: Lauren?
Elliott: I love Lauren. Lauren is my winner pick now. She’s tell you exactly how she feels.
Holmes: Patrick?
Elliott: He’s very outgoing and fun to a certain extent. You need Patrick in doses. But, he’s a very kind person. He just doesn’t know what to say in all of the situations.
Holmes: Chrissy?
Elliott: I think that Chrissy is out there to play the game. I don’t think I know her on a personal level. Maybe I’ll find out one day who she is.
Holmes: Devon?
Elliott: I think Devon is great. He’s got that surfer vibe. I really wanted to work with Devon for the long haul. He’s smart and good at hiding his knowledge.
Holmes: Let’s finish with Ryan.
Elliott: He’s playing a great game. He was like my little brother out there. I think he’s got a great chance to weasel his way through the rest of the game. He gets people’s humor, which goes a long way.

Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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