Posts Tagged ‘kelly shinn’

‘Survivor’ Castaway Interview: ‘Purple’ Kelly Shinn & NaOnka Mixon

December 2, 2010

Thousands of people send videos to CBS casting every year in the hopes of being invited to play “Survivor.” At best, only 40 people a year will get to live that dream. So, you can imagine how frustrated fans can be when someone gets out there quits.

What could frustrate them more? Two people quitting in the same night.

That exact situation happened last night when NaOnka Mixon and “Purple” Kelly Shinn both threw in the towel after 28 days in the wilderness. I spoke with both of the castaways the following morning to discuss how unforgiving the environment really was, why NaOnka didn’t forfeit her reward, and how they were treated by the other jury members after their exit.

Gordon Holmes: NaOnka, I think there’s little doubt in anyone’s mind that you were this season’s villain. However, some people who get slapped with the “Villain” tag will blame it on an unfavorable edit. Do you think you were portrayed fairly?
NaOnka Mixon:
(Laughs) Seeing how I played the game, I think I was portrayed pretty fair. Pretty fair. I was a (expletive deleted). I had no certain way of how I was going to play the game, I had no idea that I was going to be such a (expletive deleted). I’m not like that in real life, but I think it was pretty fair.
Gordon: I was shocked, because I thought you were delightful when we met in Nicaragua.
NaOnka: Aww…
Kelly Shinn: Uh…you were wrong. (Laughs)
NaOnka: (Laughs)

Gordon: Alright Kelly, I’m not going to be like the “Survivor” editors, I’m actually going to spend some time with you.
You know, I’ve already had more air time with this interview than I had on the show!
Gordon: Well then do us a favor, let us know what you were actually doing during your 28 days on the show.
Kelly: Gosh, I was doing what everyone else was doing. I was secretly conniving with people in my alliance. I was starving, I was enjoying my one seashell of rice a day. They didn’t show anything. There was time I’d go fishing with Jane. I’d do all the things around camp, I’d collect firewood, try to keep the fire going. I’d go collect crabs. I got very good at crab hunting, but nobody would ever know that.

Gordon: Now NaOnka, you’re a P.E. teacher in your regular life. Has your appearance on “Survivor” affected your career at all?
This might upset a lot of people, but…nope! It sure has not. Actually, I’ve been getting requests to do more schools.
Gordon: Really?
NaOnka: And it’s pretty ironic because I thought it was going to hit me really hard. The only thing that was weird was that somehow my place of work hit the Internet. The location, the address, everything. So, I started getting a lot of hate mail at my job. They started emailing my boss. People were actually coming to my job. It was crazy. I needed security to start walking me to my car. I think people need to understand that this is a game, this is not real life. The way we play this game has nothing to do with our lives, we were trying to survive in Nicaragua.

Gordon: Kelly, both of you cited the weather as the main reason for quitting the game. Could you help me understand how hard it is to live under those conditions?
Gosh, endless nights without being dry. There was one point I don’t think my hair was dry for two weeks. It was just constantly wet. It was just impossible. It was so windy. And having just a little bit of rice a day, just a little tablespoon of rice, really gets to you. It sounds so easy to say, but when you’re stuck in the rain and there are constant drips, I think it could really make someone go crazy. You get dizzy, you’re blacking out. I ended up getting parasites. And that is what people don’t understand. There is way more to it than what you see on television. And I would say that if anyone is offended, they need to spend a few nights in the rain. And put them in a little yellow dress!
Gordon: I don’t know how good I’d look in a yellow dress. But it is easy to make those kinds of comments from my couch.
NaOnka: (Laughs) Sandals too, you’ve got to throw that in there too.

Gordon: NaOnka, after last night’s reward challenge, you were given the opportunity to trade your reward for a tarp and rice for the camp. I don’t understand why you wouldn’t sacrifice that for your friends Chase and Holly when you were leaving the game that night anyways.
I had already made up my mind that I was going home. And my team just won, so I’m going to eat, grub with some people that I really enjoy. I gave my idol to Chase, and now I can party. Holly stepped down, I thought that was a good strategic move for her. I was officially out of the game at this point, so I don’t care who’s going to be eating, what they’re going to be sleeping underneath. I did not care. So, I think that it was brilliant of me. Why should I step down if I’m already going to lose the game?
Gordon: But you were going to eat later that night anyways, you could’ve let Holly go on the reward.
NaOnka: I wish they would have shown more of Mama Holly, because that’s just the type of (expletive deleted) that she would do. But at that point, her giving me the eye, like that (expletive deleted) is (expletive deleted) up. I didn’t care what nobody thought. I’ve already checked out. I was just being NaOnka. I’m never going to change. And if I’m going to leave the game, I’m going to leave the game with a win. I do not regret doing that. I left with popcorn, candy, and a hot dog.
Gordon: And the movie (“Gulliver’s Travels”) was good?
NaOnka: The movie was excellente!

Gordon: Kelly, a lot of  fans, a lot of our commenters, even former “Survivor” players have said that quitters shouldn’t be allowed to be a part of the jury, quitters shouldn’t be allowed to attend the reunion, and quitters should have to forfeit any prize money. How do you respond to that?
You know, it’s hard to say that, but a lot of the people saying those things are people who haven’t gone through what we went through.
Gordon: Even former Survivors?
Kelly: Oh, they are?
NaOnka: I want to step in on that.
Gordon: Go ahead.
NaOnka: Because I have met some former Survivors and I think they’re awesome, I think they’re great, but if they’re not winners, then they’re just like the people that we competed against. They know how the elements are, they know how hard the game is. And a lot of Survivors are still bitter about their season. Well Purple Kelly and I made it pretty damn far. So the people who say that are just bitter. And you still haven’t said who said that.
Gordon: I’m sorry. I saw it from a few people, but off the top of my head I know Eliza Orlins said it over Twitter.
NaOnka: Did she win?
Gordon: No, but she did last 37 days in “Survivor: Vanuatu.”
NaOnka: See, there’s my point. So, if you didn’t win, there’s nothing that you can say that can hurt Purple Kelly and I. Because this (expletive deleted) is hard, and you have to really dig deep. You can dig so deep that there is nothing left.  So, if you did not win and last those 39 days you ain’t gotta tell us (expletive deleted) because we played hard.
Kelly: I think what’s most important to me is I talked to a lot of people on the Nicaragua season, and they know what I went through, and they support me.

Gordon: NaOnka, last night you said you could have won. Who could you have beaten in the finals?
She would’ve gone with me, and I would’ve won the million dollars.
NaOnka: (Laughs) I think Purple Kelly was a threat. But I would’ve just run with whoever lasted. It wouldn’t have mattered who would’ve been there, it would have been all about my speech.

Gordon: What was the reaction when you arrived at Ponderosa (where eliminated jury members wait between Tribal Councils) from the other jury members?
Well, of course dramatic Alina, she was a ghost. She disappeared on us. Marty and Brenda, although they were pissed, they still stood there and greeted us. Purple Kelly and me didn’t get along with Alina on the island because she was part of the other alliance. I played her like a flute.
Gordon: A gym teacher can play a flute?
NaOnka: (Laughs) I played her like a flute!


‘Survivor: Nicaragua’ Episode 8 Recap: Grand Theft Flour

November 3, 2010

Last Week: Jane hosted a barbecue for one, Marty handed his immunity idol to Sash, and La Flor treated Jill to a one-way ticket home.

39 Days, 20 People, 1 “Survivor” Blog

Here are the tribes as they currently stand…

The La Flor Tribe (wearing yellow)

  • Brenda – 27, Paddleboard Company Owner
  • Fabio – 21, Student
  • Kelly S. – 20, Nursing Student
  • Jane – 56, Dog Trainer
  • Marty – 48, Technology Executive
  • Sash – 30, Real Estate Broker

The Espada Tribe (wearing blue)

  • Alina – 23, Art Student
  • Benry – 24, Club Promoter
  • Chase – 24, Race Car Jackman/Country Singer
  • Dan – 63, Real Estate Executive
  • Holly – 44, Swim Coach
  • NaOnka – 27, P.E. Teacher

Quick Note: XFINITY TV has some very exciting “Survivor” stuff coming up in the near future. (Yes, I’m aware that’s vague.) Be sure to check back here and on my Twitter account for details.

We start off at La Flor where a poor, deceased turtle has washed up on the beach and is being picked apart by vultures. Looks like the metaphor machine is working overtime.

The irony is not lost on Marty. He realizes that he’s in deep trouble. If only he had an immunity idol.

Shortly afterward, “Uncle Fabio” (his nickname, not mine) arrives with some tree mail. The tree mail alludes to a merge. I’m not sure if I buy that though. We’ve been tricked before. Drop your buffs indeed, JPro.

Over at Espadadada, the individual players are trying to figure out how the merge will affect them. Benry wants Alina to go next. Alina, however, pitches an idea that the current Espada six sticks together and goes after Marty’s idol.

NaOnka thinks this idea is ridiculous, saying “Uncle Dan” wasn’t even into Alina’s plan. OK, seriously, we can’t have an Uncle Dan and an Uncle Fabio. I’m going to talk to the nickname committee and get a ruling.

The La Floricans eventually arrive at Espada with a large chest. They crack it open and sure enough they discover a merge feast and some sweet new red buffs.

Quick Note: No lie, those buffs are awesome. The white trim really makes them pop.

Marty is given the opportunity to name the tribe. He goes with “Libertad,” which means “Liberty.” Dude, anything’s better than “Nobag.” And “Augaracin” would be too hard to pronounce.

The new tribe is super giddy when they discover some Nicaraguan rum. Not that I blame them.

Brenda and NaOnka take a quick strategy walk. High fives are exchanged when NaOnka learns that Sash has Marty’s immunity idol. So, the dominant alliance has two immunity idols. I wonder how they’ll mess that up…

Meanwhile, Chase and Jane are bonding over their North Carolina roots. She again busts out the “Ugly Duckling” analogy to describe how she was treated by Marty and Co.

The next morning, NaOnka wakes up still beaming over the merge, the sweet new red buffs, and the news that Sash has the second immunity idol. In fact, they say NaOnka’s heart grew three sizes that day. Actually, that’s not true, she was ticked that Fabio took a big bite out of a tortilla so she started sabotaging the camp. She swiped the flour from the chest, took it into the forest, and buried it.

One problem? Holly saw her do it.

She also swiped some fruit and hid several of the cooking items. Look at NaOnka going all Hantz on everyone!

NaOnka then takes Alina to the side and tells her that everyone is gunning for her. NaOnka follows that move up by sharing her stolen oranges with her.

What the what?!

Is NaOnka setting Alina up as the thief? Is she trying to win her jury vote? Is NaOnka a genius?

Back at camp, the Libertads are realizing that things are missing. Holly asks NaOnka if she put the flour back. NaOnka responds in a rational manner. Actually, that’s not true either. She flipped out. Uncle Fabio tried to get to the bottom of it, but it turned into Sock-gate Part Deux.

Chase and Alina confront NaOnka about the theft. NaOnka admits that she took the items, but can’t confess because she already told people that she didn’t. Chase responds with an early contender for line of the night saying, “You lied? You lied in ‘Survivor’? Everyone’s lied in ‘Survivor.’”

NaOnka returns to camp and confesses. She claims she was doing it for the benefit of the tribe, but Marty isn’t buying it.

Sash sees this as an opportunity; he wants to take NaOnka to the end as he doesn’t think she’ll receive any million-dollar votes. Well played, Sash.

Immunity Challenge: The players will each hold a pair of handles. The handles are holding a small pole in place. If the handles aren’t pulled together or pushed apart, the pole will fall. The last man and woman still holding onto their pole will win immunity.

Not much to describe here, a lot of standing and pole holding.

Grow up.

Purple Kelly and Dan go first. (What?! The challenge involved standing, Dan was a certain to win.) Alina, Brenda, and Benry go next, followed by Sash and NaOnka. Holly is out next, giving immunity to Jane. However instead of stopping, Jane decides to try to beat the guys.

That’s just foolish. Why make yourself look like a threat?

Marty is the next to go, bringing it down to Fabio and Chase (and Jane, technically). Chase’s bar eventually falls, giving immunity to Fabio.

Back at camp, Jane admits to the ladies that she only stayed in the challenge to beat Marty. So, it goes without saying who her pick is to send home at Tribal Council. The tribe seems to be on board with sending Marty home first as long as Alina goes home second.

Sash, however, lobbies to keep Marty around as he promised him safety at the next Tribal Council in exchange for his immunity idol. If I were in Sash’s alliance, I’d be very concerned with him lobbying for jury votes while we’re working as a team.

Later that day, Dan actually plays the game a little as he warns Marty that Chase could try to blindside him. Marty approaches Sash and Brenda with this concern and they throw Chase under the bus. They claim to have never discussed voting for Marty with Chase.

Alina crunches the numbers and realizes she needs one more vote. She decides that Uncle Fabio is her best bet. She makes her pitch and given the choice between Marty and Alina, he chooses NaOnka. I love this kid. His favorite peanut butter is probably Sprite.

That night at Tribal Council, Marty decides to clear the air, saying that he never had a problem with Jane. However, he thinks she made bad alliances early on with players who are no longer in the game.

Jane takes exception with this statement saying that she approached him and he “Fluffed her off.” Again, what does that mean?

Marty keeps at it, saying if Jane stays in the game, she’s going to win the million dollars. He says you couldn’t write a better sob story, and that if she makes it to the end, he’ll give her his vote.

I know a lot of people are thinking, “Shut up, Marty.” But I don’t blame him or Alina. When you’re in trouble, you need to do anything you can.

JPro asks Alina if Marty just made a mistake. Alina gives a very smart answer, saying that Marty’s speech shows how strategic he can be. She also says she’s a good swing vote and only a “pawn.”

Dan then brings up the point that two people from the tribe took food from the camp. NaOnka that admits that she acted alone and Alina was only an accomplice after the fact. She says she stole from camp, then gave it back. She’s like a redundant Robin Hood.

NaOnka thinks it’s OK though, because she was punished by getting the silent treatment. Fabio doesn’t think that’s a real punishment.

Voting Time: Jane votes for Marty, Alina votes for Marty, Benry votes for Alina (calling her a “Dirt Squirrel”), Sash votes for Alina, and the rest of the votes are as unknown as the definition of “Dirt Squirrel”.

JPro gets his tally on, then returns to read some votes. Two votes for Marty, six votes for Alina, and the ninth person voted out of “Survivor: Nicaragua” and the first member of the jury is…Alina.

Verdict: Looks like things are picking up now that we’ve hit mergeville. But I’ll tell you this, if Fabio gets voted out, one of you is going to have to take over these recaps until next season. I’ll be in a corner crying.

Who’s Going to Win? It seems like there are too many players in the dominant alliance right now. Once they start turning on each other it’ll get interesting. I’m still leaning toward Brenda though. She obviously very tight with Sash, Brenda, and Chase.

Power Rankings Results: Team Dragon Slayer and Team Truth Seeker both had Alina in spot eleven. The current score is now Team Dragon Slayer 96, Team Truth Seeker 100.

Follow me on Twitter for breaking “Survivor” news: @gordonholmes

What Do You Think? Should NaOnka have been booted over the flour? Would you have bounced Marty or Alina? What’s a “Dirt Squirrel”?

%d bloggers like this: