Rob Cesternino talks with the latest player to be eliminated from Survivor: Kaoh Rong in our weekly exit interview podcast. Plus, Rob talks to Jordan Kalish about the moments from This Week in Survivor History
Survivor Kaoh Rong Exit Interview with Anna Khait
Rob: Anna, good morning.
Anna: Rob, good morning honey.
R: How are you doing?
A: I’m doing well how are you doing?
R: I’m a little bummed out Anna. I thought you had this!
A: I know! I know, and I know you picked me as your winner pick! I’m so sorry to disappoint
R: Well thank you for considering my feelings in all this, I appreciate it. Anna, let’s talk
about all of this because I did think it was a really exciting show last night.
A: Yeah, it was.
R: So, looking back at all of this, Stephen and I were talking it through last night, we were
really trying to talk about if there’s anything that you could have done differently. Do you
feel like looking back in hindsight, I know you must do this in poker a lot thinking back at
how you played the hand, do you feel like there’s anything that majorly you could have
A: I mean I remember thinking out there even, the one thing that I could have done, okay so I
knew that Peter was on the bottom of the Brains tribe. And I knew that that was a great
opportunity for me to come after him, and I did, in terms of trying to convince Aubry and Joe to
get rid of him. Because the first thing that Peter told me was “okay, Anna, Joe does not
strategize, don’t worry, don’t talk to him”, I said “okay”. The first thing Joe tells me is Peter is
on the bottom, he told me about the whole thing that happened with Liz, I’m like wow this is
great I can totally vibe with this, this is before the immunity challenge. And so this is awesome,
so I have Peter come after Tai too and try to set Tai up and make them feel like he probably has
an idol and you know, told him about the story with him. And with Peter, he seemed so confident
he seemed so set, and everyone was telling me that he was gunning for me so my gut told me
that Peter was next after me, I really thought that they were gonna come after him once they
didn’t need him anymore and then he was probably next. So I thought that and I thought okay,
well I can tell him that and use him and have him switch. But the thing I was afraid of was him
saying “oh, guess what Anna told me, we should really get rid of her”, because he was already
saying that I was schemey, I didn’t want to see like I was scheming even more and I thought he
can completely go and backstab me and tell Aubry and Joe and I’m definitely out. I thought
maybe, you know, try to come after him, well it was really Joe pushing it and I was on the
bandwagon and I kept talking about it. The body language that Joe and Aubry were giving off to
me were not of “we’re going to vote out Peter” because I knew that Peter voted out Aubry, I
thought that if Aubry was going to have a chance to get rid of Peter and blindside him she would
have much happier, excited body language, it was very dull, it was very plain and I knew for a
fact they were not gonna come after Peter, and I knew for a fact that it was because they were not
gonna come after Peter, that they were smart enough to realize that he was the Brains tribe, that
you don’t want to lose the numbers. So I said okay, my best bet is to come after Tai, you know,
set him up already on the island, so I think that, you know, Tai is likeable and he would provide
around camp, but he was injured and I was trying to show them that you can’t trust him, he
probably has an idol, we caught him looking for it, and this and that, trying to set him up as best I
could and obviously he told me he had an idol about half an hour before we came out there, so
there was a good chance.
R: So you were well on your way to throwing Tai under the bus and you were telling
everybody about how you can’t trust him, and how he might have the idol and he was
always looking for it, but then at the point that he showed you the idol, did you change the
way that you were looking at him and really put the brakes on trying to make him look bad
to everybody else? And then ultimately Scot, it seemed like talked him into “hey what are
you doing here?” How much did that change things for you when he showed you the idol?
A: Sure, so Tai and I had a pretty good relationship back on the Beauty camp. I liked Caleb a lot
and I liked Tai, I didn’t trust Nick. Even thought I trusted Tai to a certain extent, I knew he was
playing a game and I knew he was smart and I knew I couldn’t really trust him obviously,
because my gut feeling told me he can cut me at any second, he’s very manipulative in certain
ways but very sweet also and likeable. I knew he was a big threat in the game and I kept my
friends close and my enemies closer. So I was pretty close with Tai, I was pretty certain also on
the Beauty camp that he found the idol. I was telling the girls I am pretty sure he has it,
something’s telling me he has it, I know he has it. They didn’t really believe it, but once he
showed it to me right before tribal, I thought “I knew you had it, you had so many opportunities
to tell me, now I know you’re a liar, now I know I definitely can’t trust you even thought I
already didn’t”. I told the camera when I come back, he’s out. I’m gonna gun for him so hard,
you do not do that, you had so many opportunities to tell me and I do not trust you. So when he
showed it to me, I appreciated it and I was hoping he was gonna use it and save me but I did not
trust him at all anymore. I mean, my reads on him were affirmed when he showed me that idol.
Also, I would use him as long as I could, I would use him as a number but like I said I would not
have trusted him, I just would’ve used him along the way. With Scot I think that Scot definitely
woke up Tai to the fact it was a little early to use it, totally understand that point of view
obviously. He told Tai “listen, it’s too early, just keep it to yourself for now”, which is totally
true it’s definitely early to use it, at the same time, a Beauty is coming in. It’s an extra twist that
Jules is coming in we have the numbers but still it’s a tough spot for Tai. It would’ve been cool
to see him use it and be able to stay in the game and have Julia come in and get rid of a Brain and
get together with Michele and Nick and some other players and try to go farther but understood
that, and yeah it sucks that Scot told Tai that.
R: Well you were in a really tough spot last night because you really have two options in
that tribal council of, one, you could really put all your eggs in Tai’s basket and hope that
he’s going to play the idol on you like he said, or you could go completely the other way and
out Tai as being the person who obviously he has the idol and maybe change up what
they’re going to do in that way. Did you consider outing Tai, maybe not at tribal council in
front of him because that probably maybe forces him to play it or at least forces the votes
onto you so maybe not as desirable, but did you consider ever really going to Aubry and
say “hey, Tai just told me he has the idol, why don’t we blindside him?”
A: Well Tai told me about half an hour before we went out, maybe like 45 minutes before we
went out. I was really certain that it was me before even he showed it to me I was like “okay I’m
going home”. I was still fighting and still trying to talk, but my gut, I just knew it was me. It was
obvious to me. But with Tai, I thought “wow, this is an awesome opportunity”, he’s like “Anna,
we’re going to use it tonight, I wasn’t gonna use it”, he’s like “I’m pretty certain it’s you and I
think it’s great to keep the numbers, like let’s do it” and I thought “oh my gosh this is awesome”
and I could’ve went to Aubry but I spoke to Scot a bunch and Tai and I thought “wow we’re
really going to actually do this”. And I think that Tai in that moment did mean it and that’s why I
trusted him. I think last minute Scot pulled him aside before tribal and he just changed his mind
because he was thinking of actually using it. It was pretty obvious it was going to be me. Who
knows, I think it would’ve been great if I would have came to Aubry and said Tai has an idol but
they were so dead-set on getting me out that they may have thought I was lying. I just thought
that Tai was probably going to use it, so why would I mess that up for myself?
R: Did any part of you want to then expose him after he didn’t use it on you and you got
voted out? People were asking us that question last night.
A: Yeah, it definitely crossed my mind. You know, you only have a few seconds while you’re
getting up and getting your torch. That was running through my mind. I was shocked, but it was
running through my mind. I was like “should I say it, should I say it, should I say it?” But
honestly, if it wasn’t for the fact that Julia was going to take my place and Julia was going to be
outnumbered again she was going to need Tai. If it wasn’t for Julia coming in I would have
probably said it. I was ready to say it but I kept thinking, she’s my girl, she’s coming back in,
I’m already out, it’d be kinda low to do that. And I don’t want to mess up her game, she’s gonna
be out of numbers and she needs him and let them work together, I want the best for her, I want
her to make it to the end, I want Michele to make it to the end. If it wasn’t for Julia coming back
I probably would have said it. I probably would have said it and I kinda wish it wasn’t that
situation and I probably would have said it, it would’ve been cool like “alright guys, by the way
guys, Tai has an idol, good luck”. And I’m definitely up for doing that kind of thing but just like
I said it was Julia coming in, I wanted the best for her and for her to come back in.
R: It seemed like you had a good relationship with Aubry last night. It seemed like that she
was the one person in that Brains group that was lobbying to say maybe we should go with
Anna and vote Tai out where it seems like the other two men seemed like “no it needs to be
Anna, she’s the person that we need to watch out for”. What was your relationship in terms
of the game like with Aubry?
A: Yeah I mean Aubry kept telling me Peter was gunning for me, which was another reason why
I didn’t come to Peter and try to have any strategy with him because I knew he would tell them.
Aubry, we had a pretty authentic relationship, I mean I liked the girl out there. I even said it out
there, this girl is very smart and she’s playing the game and I liked her. And I told her about the
possible idea of having the girls coming together post-merge and I wanted her to have that in her
mind in case she wanted to keep me along and have that as an option for her. It’s always great to
have options in the game especially when things can get switched up so fast. So we had a good
relationship, she kept assuring me, but I, like I said, saw Peter talk to Tai, I saw the Brains talk
and I just kept getting reads that Peter was gunning for me and she affirmed that. So I had a good
relationship with her, I did trust her, not completely obviously but I think that was my one thing
where I left the game and I thought “ugh you’re not supposed to trust anyone in this game” and I
came in not trusting a soul and not expecting to trust anyone, I mean I really trusted Jules and
Michele and I didn’t trust anyone else until I met Aubry. I thought okay, there’s potential here, I
liked her and I think liking her made me trust her a little more and she was even nodding in tribal
council with her thumbs up like “you’re good, don’t worry you’re not going home” so I was
really upset when that happened and she was giving me thumbs up at tribal, like what are you
doing? I’m out, just leave it alone. So I was a little bit upset with her. Yeah, I was just a little bit
upset but we’re good now though. She’s awesome and she’s playing the game and I commend
that and kudos to her for having me trust her for a little bit and hope she would help me out, good
R: Only a couple minutes left so let me just get into a couple quick things. Did you feel like
Scot was really playing everybody against each other last night in the tribe?
A: From my perspective, I saw him talking to a few people and I knew he was playing. I knew he
was in a good spot, he was playing both, he was in a great spot, he’s not gonna go out, he’s
strong, his name was not even mentioned, it was clear he wasn’t going to. He was in a great spot
to be a swing vote and decide what he wanted to do, and decide what his best game plan is. He
can just go with the Brains, or he can go with me and Tai and switch up the game and do
something cool, and maybe get allegiance with me and Tai and Jason and things post-merge and
stuff. He was playing the game. I liked him at first. I was only there for like 24 hours. One
minute you’re at the top of the tribe on the Beauty tribe and then 24 hours later the swap and
you’re out. You’re completely on the bottom. I remember my first instinct, my first impressions
of him being on the Brawn tribe and seeing from the outside how they were treating Alecia, I
really didn’t like him. But coming out there I did like him and I thought that he was playing the
game and he tried to make an alliance with me and I knew he was playing the game so I said
what I had to say and I was nice to him and I tried to have his back as much as I could. If he had
my back I would’ve had his, I’m pretty loyal.
R: Back at the Beauty tribe, was Nick going to be the first person that you guys voted out
and if so why?
A: Yes. Good question, okay so the girls didn’t really trust Tai especially because they caught
him looking for an idol and all that kind of stuff, they didn’t trust him. They liked Nick. There’s
something about Nick that he would be charming with them and whatnot. It took them some
time, to realize that he really wasn’t, he was playing the game. I saw pretty quickly, I didn’t like
him, he rubbed me the wrong way out there. He would smile at everyone the same way, he
would flirt with Tai, I thought oh my god he’s playing the game. And I think he quickly found
out that I was bringing the girls together and that we had something solid and that we were gonna
get Caleb. Nick kinda figured out that I was kinda in control there in terms of making decisions
and figuring out who we were gonna work with and stuff. And so, he was gunning for me. So he
started spreading rumors about me to try to get me out. This was even after we won immunity, he
was just coming after me and it was obvious that he was playing the game because he understood
the fact that you have to come after who’s really kind of pushing the girls in a certain direction.
So the girls wanted Tai and I wanted Nick. I think I convinced them pretty well that if we were
gonna lose immunity we would’ve got rid of Nick. It was pretty certain because before we got to
the immunity challenge we were like okay, we’re getting rid of him if nothing happens because
we said Nick’s first, then Tai. I trusted Tai more than Nick and the girls were at that point iffy
about Nick too because he was spreading things about me so we were trying to decide but I was
coming after Nick. He was gonna be out because you don’t want someone starting rumors about
R: No, I hate that.
A: It was important for us. So yeah, it would have been Nick.
R: Anna, I know you gotta run but I had so much more to talk through with you. This was
a bad beat out there, I thought you had three queens going into this swap and ultimately it
did not work out but keep hope alive. Kelley Wentworth came back into the game from this
exact same spot and she had a pretty good run. So I think that maybe I just had the season
wrong, maybe one day I get this right.
A: Maybe, maybe.
R: Anna, well best of luck to you and looking forward to hearing form you in the future
A: Thank you so much, Rob thanks for having me on your podcast, bye everyone!
R: Take care, bye.
Special thanks to Molly Jackson for this week’s interview summary.