‘Survivor’ Castaway Monica: ‘I Thought Kimmi Was My One Friend’


"Survivor: Second Chance" (CBS)

Quick Note: We’re going to be bringing you all kinds of “Survivor” fun this season including episode recaps, exit interviews, and Power Rankings with Jenn Brown and Max Dawson. Be sure to follow me on Twitter (@gordonholmes) for up-to-the-minute news and info.

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 Whether it’s Kel’s beef jerky, Sugar’s cookie, or Julie’s trail mix, “Survivor” always always always ALWAYS comes down to food.


I spoke with the latest victim of a food related targeting the morning after her elimination and asked her if there was more to Kimmi’s betrayal, if Stephen got heat for his shot that went wide left, and what was really going on in the early days of Bayon…

Monica Padilla: How are you, Gordon?
Gordon Holmes: I’m willing to wager that I’m feeling a little better than you are right now.
Padilla: (Laughs) Oh my God, I’m dying right now.
Holmes: You get a pass, you had a rough night. Should I ask all the questions now, or should I save some for later?
Padilla: (Laughs) You can ask them now.
Holmes: I don’t want to deplete them all.

Holmes: What happened with Kimmi? Did that come by surprise or did you know she had it out for you?
Padilla: It really did. I had no idea that she had it out for me. How crazy! I got the invisible edit from the get-go, which sucks. I don’t know which producer I pissed off. I have no idea. If you know me, do you think I hit the beach and didn’t say anything?
Holmes: I figured you’d be a delicate flower. Quietly swaying in the breeze.
Padilla: Mmm…probably not. I have a really big mouth!
Holmes: You wouldn’t upset a soul.
Padilla: I’m a delicate flower who goes and makes her alliance on day one. The first person I made an alliance with was Kimmi. She has a big mouth, she’s a New Yorker.  I was born there, I grew up there, awesome. I aligned with her on day one. I thought, this is sick, this is great. I aligned with Jeremy. Then we made good with Keith. So, the three of us set that with Kimmi. We said, “All the way to the end. Let’s go.” I was trying to play an old-school game and not overkill that. I don’t know where Kimmi just lost her (expletive deleted) against me. I don’t know if she had a chicken flashback or what. (Laughs)

Holmes: They showed the thing with not depleting the seafood and the female alliance. But that’s really all they gave us.
Padilla: They made it look like Kimmi was the mastermind of my blindside. But, I don’t know if that’s entirely accurate.
Holmes: Then who was it?
Padilla: I don’t know. I wasn’t there for the Monica-blindside discussions.
Holmes: That seems smart.
Padilla: I know that if we’d gone to Tribal the first night, Kimmi is the one they said they had wanted to send home. I tried to protect her. So, they knew I was close to Kimmi. I don’t know if they turned that against her to try to separate us. I thought that Kimmi and I were tight. When she pissed me off with the clams, it was like, “It’s fine, we’re good. We’re girlfriends.” I didn’t think that was a turning point. But anytime you attack someone over something stupid you can become a target.

Holmes: So you, Kimmi, Keith, and Jeremy were an early alliance. But, they showed us that Jeremy, Tasha, Savage, Keith, and Joe were an alliance as well. What were the early days at Bayon like?
Padilla: Oh my God, the early days of Bayon…people were so scared to even say the A-word. The A-word was like the F-word. “Don’t talk about alliances, we’re a happy tribe.” And I’m like, “Hi, guys. We’re on ‘Survivor.’” So, the early days I did not want to align with Kass or Tasha…and I was even wary of Ciera. I didn’t know her going into the game. I was really nervous.  I didn’t want to align with everyone. But, they’re all like, “We’re a happy-go-lucky tribe and everything is awesome!” I was on Galu, so I knew how great and awesome everything could be until somebody plays an idol on you. I’d say, “At some point we’re going to have to go to Tribal.” I don’t know if I was the Bitter Betty of the tribe. Savage was talking about his wife. Kass was telling a million one-hour stories. That woman can tell stories. The whole time I never connected with anyone. I thought Kimmi was my one friend. It sucks for a second chance. Nobody really wanted to play hard. Maybe if I was on a tribe with Wentworth or Peih-Gee.

Holmes: Any clues that you were the target last night?
Padilla: I really didn’t see it coming. When you have a majority like that and people who are clearly on the bottom? You’re going to have to wait until one of the Bayon members is voted out. But, the minute I walked on that beach I was targeted for being Russell Hantz’s friend. I’ve heard that. Apparently voting out Kimmi might’ve been a blindside and I would’ve gone home. I heard that from Stephen. So, I don’t know what went down or how it went down. I trusted Kimmi and I trusted Stephen. The three of us were on the bottom, so it was wise of us to stick together. Because early on I saw the bro-out alliance. I saw that Stephen was on the outs of that. So were Kimmi and I . Ciera, Tasha, and Kass were just kind of floating through. Maybe they were sticking together, I don’t know. I didn’t click with Kass or Tasha. I don’t care to hear what Kass is saying any time of the day.
Holmes: She trying to play a better social game. Did that come off as fake to you?
Padilla: To me it seemed like an act. She used to carry that stupid book at Ponderosa, “How to Win Friends and Influence People.” I was like, “OK, Kass…alright.” I don’t handle people who just keep talking talking talking very well. What (expletive deleted) are you trying to push?

Holmes: What about Ciera? Did you ever try to make inroads with her based on your relationship with her mother?
Padilla: That was another thing that screwed me. Everyone thought I was aligned with Ciera going in and I never once had a conversation with Ciera until we were on Bayon beach. So, we got along great. And when I thought I was on the outs I’d check in with Ciera. But, since we never went to Tribal, I have no idea.

Holmes: Alright, word association time…
Padilla: I told myself I was going to  prepare for this and I didn’t. (Laughs) I drank too much last night.
Holmes: What?! I had no idea.
Padilla: And now I’m sick.
Holmes: What could possibly encourage you to drink too much?
Padilla: Because I was voted off of that TV show.
Holmes: That show is the worst. Jerks.
Padilla: Why did I want to go on there again? They don’t even feed you. They don’t even have craft services.
Holmes: Probst calls “Cut” and then they wheel out a turkey.
Padilla: Oh my God, I’d be a whole new girl.
Holmes: Let’s start with Jeremy.
Padilla: Huge threat, ruling the game.
Holmes: Savage?
Padilla: Very sweet, take him out while you can.
Holmes: Spencer?
Padilla: “Survivor” superstar.
Holmes: Kelly?
Padilla: You shoulda watched a few seasons before you played.
Holmes: Ciera?
Padilla: Ciera is cool. She’s cool, political. She hates challenges. She always sits out.
Holmes: Kass?
Padilla: If I have to hear one more one-hour story from Kass? Please vote me out first.
Holmes: Tasha?
Padilla: Fake.
Holmes: Joe?
Padilla: Joe is awesome.  I don’t have a bad word to say about Joe.
Holmes:  Stephen?
Padilla: Stephen came in thinking he knew how to play.
Holmes: Keith?
Padilla: Keith is really, really cool. Love Keith.
Holmes: Let’s finish with Kimmi.
Padilla: Kimmi is the real snake in the grass. Learn alliances. I hope you win.

Holmes: Did Stephen get any heat last night when he hit the Angkor target?
Padilla: Not really. They teased him about it. But, I heard rumors they threw the challenge to get me out. They didn’t show any of that. Maybe that’s why he didn’t get a lot of heat for it.
Holmes: Not the most subtle way of going about it.
Padilla: I don’t know how much of that is true.

Holmes: With Second Chances, there was always the chance that you could do worse than you did before. Does that change how you feel about the game?
Padilla: I never thought I wouldn’t make it to day 33, which is probably a very naïve way to look at it . I think it’s a very different game than when I played. The first time I played it was just play and we’ll see where it goes. I think a lot of forces changed people’s views.  I don’t know if it was the pressure of playing a second time and people wanting to hit it hard. But, I’m a lot more resentful of the game. Another thing is; I feel like my story wasn’t told. It made it obvious that I was going to be voted out. I had no arc, they showed nothing of my original alliance. It’s all of the sudden; I went home because of clams. I’m just annoyed. You didn’t see anything I did from day one. You saw a ton of Varner. So, why not show who I was loyal to?

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

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