‘Survivor’ Castaway Morgan – ‘I Kind of Embarrassed James in Challenges’


“Survivor: Ghost Island” (CBS)

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Gordon Holmes: Often times a vote will be portrayed as a blindside…that wasn’t really a blindside. That looked like a blindside to me.
Morgan Ricke: It was really a blindside. It would have been a blindside to any of us. I mean, Angela was so clueless. She was so out of the Tribal, she didn’t even count. I think it would have been a blindside for Domenick or Wendell.

Holmes: People talk about “I knew something was up because someone wouldn’t look me in the eye.” In hindsight, did you sense anything like that?
Ricke: Right before we went to Tribal, I was getting a weird feeling from Libby. One of the very last questions she asked as we were packing up to go for Tribal was, “Are you a fan of ‘Survivor.’” Well, this is a huge question. Obviously I assumed she was a recruit. So, I’m like…does she want to know from the superfan side of it? If I am a fan and I’ve wanted to be on the show for years is she going to be too sad to vote me out? Why is she asking?! So, I played up the fact that I come from a large family and this is how our Wednesday nights were spent since I was 13 years old. I played up the family side of it because she’s a good little Catholic school girl. There was so much to that question. And once we started going to Tribal, Libby stopped looking at me. She stopped smiling, she stopped winking. And I was thinking, “Oh, (expletive deleted).” That’s why at Tribal you see me reassuring her. “Libby is gorgeous, and I trust her.” I was getting this vibe. I wanted her to think, “We’ve got this. I’m not turning on you.” Because she knew Angela was going to vote for her. We told her not to worry about it, because Angela is clueless. So, Libby was probably getting a little paranoid.

Holmes: There was a point where old Malolo seemed concerned about Domenick’s idol, so they had to decide between you and Wendell. Why do you think they went with you? I’d imagine it’d make sense from a game standpoint for Libby to try to keep you around.
Ricke: Correct. Libby did not want to vote me out. The relationship we had was real. I’ve gotten to talk to everyone since the game and James said that he thought I was the glue that was holding Naviti together. He said everyone likes you and that made him terrified. And Libby and I were immediately friends. James said we didn’t even say anything to each other and we were already sisters. “You talked about Catholic school and reality TV and the Kardashians, and ‘The Bachelor.’” We had so much in common that it was terrifying. And Angela liked me, we were fine. He felt like Chris and I had a good relationship. We weren’t in an alliance, but we talked together. I think it was because I was well liked and he won’t say this…but I kind of embarrassed James in challenges. He’s not very good at challenges. He’s a Harvard grad, he’s supposed to be super smart but he never does puzzles. The swimming challenge was difficult for him, the “Ninja Warrior” steps, he failed at that and had to go back. I was a strong female that at the merge would have won some challenges. And guys don’t like it when girls are better at them at things.

Holmes: Alright, word association time. Let’s start with Wendell.
Ricke: Behind-the-radar…but he forms good relationships with people. He really gets to know people for who they are.
Holmes: Chelsea?
Ricke: Ghost? Her edit is how she was. She’s going to hate me for saying this, but she didn’t do anything. Her and Desiree would be chilling in the bed. That’s what they did. I’m sure there’s some strategy somewhere, but I never saw it.
Holmes: Bradley?
Ricke: I love him. He’s one of my original alliance members. He talks so much (expletive deleted) and I think it’s hilarious. What you see is what you get.
Holmes: James?
Ricke: (Laughs) He voted me out! Solid move on James. Credit to him. Hopefully he can step it up in challenges. This guy has a super good IQ. I’d love to see him step up in puzzles.
Holmes: Laurel?
Ricke: Quiet…I hope she solves a puzzle at some point. She’s a strong female…she’s behind the radar.
Holmes: Domenick?
Ricke: My right-hand man. I love Domenick. My brother.
Holmes: Angela?
Ricke: I asked her questions and tried to get to know her, but she didn’t want to talk about her past. She got a divorce, she didn’t want to talk about it. She’s in the military, she didn’t want to talk about that.
Holmes: Sebastian?
Ricke: Laffy Taffy! I love Sebastian. We’re both water people, we’re both Florida people. He’s so passionate about what he does. He’s so happy. We see everything in rainbows.
Holmes: Donathan?
Ricke: He had this hero edit, which is good for Donathan. I don’t know. I saw him sit there, during the water challenge saying, “I’m not going to do it.” It took him a long time. It took Jeff Probst yelling at him for him to get in the water to become that hero. I see why fans like the guy. He’s playing low-key. He didn’t say much.
Holmes: Chris?
Ricke: Chris is…what you see is what you get. He has his one liners. I never had a problem with how he treated me. Some of them did. I get him. He’s funny, but people take it the wrong way.
Holmes: Desiree?
Ricke: Hopefully she starts playing. She’s good in challenges.
Holmes: Kellyn?
Ricke: Love her. She’s awesome, she’s hilarious, she’s quirky.
Holmes: Let’s finish with Libby.
Ricke: Your cute…southern girl. I still love her. I hope she goes far. I have nothing negative to say about her.

Holmes: We didn’t get to see much of the politics around Naviti outside of the Chris/Domenick feud. What would have happened if the original Naviti had gone to Tribal?
Ricke: It would’ve been a five-five split. We were hoping to pull Sebastian or Chelsea. But Chelsea didn’t…game. We were hoping to tell her she was going home and pull her. We also wanted Sebastian because everyone loves Sebastian.
Holmes: When you say five-five, was that yourself, Wendell, Domenick, Bradley, and Kellyn?
Ricke: Correct.

Holmes: Was there anything out there that you wish we’d seen?
Ricke: It was a good portrayal of me. I had a ton of fun out there. The sunset, the stars at night, I was enjoying everything. We were constantly staying up and keeping the fire going. You didn’t see how much I held back at the water challenge. (Laughs) I couldn’t have gone any slower if I wanted to. The challenges were pretty easy for me. I think the crazy thing is after nine days I felt good. I still had energy. I didn’t feel weak. I was proud of myself for that.

Holmes: Did you tell anybody about the legacy advantage?
Ricke: I did not tell anybody. I actually kept my mouth shut.
Holmes: Look at you!
Ricke: It’s shocking. (Laughs)

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