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Exit Interview Episode 7/Week 6 – Bradley Kleihege

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Ryan: In your own words can you explain what happened last night?

Bradley: I think it does not kind of add up if you buy the edit at face value. Domenick is a smart player and he would understand, if I was truly just that annoying and there wasn’t anything else going on, you would just take me to the end. I wouldn’t get any votes and it would be one less person to worry about. This is what Dom has told me about the situation when we got home. That he was worried and thought I was a threat and if he did not get me out when he had a chance, there was a good likelihood that I would get him out because what he thought was I was voting out people with kids because I had voted out Brendan and then voted out Stephanie. He had kids and was worried about that. What I also learned was starting after the first swap he was telling everybody that the first chance he got, he needed to get rid of me or he needed to get rid of Kellyn, because he did not trust the two of us together. So if you couple that with the fact that Chelsea and I were never close, really at all! She never trusted me. It was the perfect opportunity for Domenick to get me out before we made the the merge.

What was your relationship like Day 1 with Domenick? It appeared like you two were open to working together and especially as we are close to the merge, with this potential upcoming battle between Chris and Domenick, which side would you have voted with?

I would have definitely gone with Domenick’s side. Day 1, I immediately was aligned with Wendell and Morgan. Day 2, I picked up Kellyn and then we brought Dom in as our fifth. So we were pretty close from the beginning. He touched on it a little bit at the start of the episode last night. He said I talked down him and what he is actually referring to was in those first couple of days at Naviti everyone was throwing his name around, everyone wanted to get rid of him, we were split 5-5 at Naviti which unfortunately you didn’t really get to see any of in the episodes because we were split. I pulled him aside a couple of times and said “Dom, people are throwing your name around because you are bossing everybody and you wont stop going around and hunting for the idol, you’re not quite gelling with everybody, just play a little easier because you are going to put a target on yourself and that hurts the five of us as an alliance.’ He told me after the game he was like you were bossing me around on how to play. Maybe my delivery wasn’t good with that, but that was what I was trying to do with him. That is where he saw a little bit of conflict. But it goes back to the bigger part he just didn’t trust me. Dom was playing really hard and kind of in a flashy way and if you look at what I was doing at Malolo I was playing pretty hard as well. So I think he just looked at it as the best time to get rid of me and Chelsea will just go along with anything really.

Lets talk a little bit about your time on Malolo. To me this is when your game really came to life and you became the power player. You talked about not having a strong relationship with Chelsea, but she did vote with you to get out both Brendan and Stephanie.

Yeah, she was much closer with Kellyn. Kellyn really had Chelsea wrapped around her finger. Which was great, because Kellyn and I were 100% in charge of the five original Naviti over at Malolo. So what Kellyn and I would do is we would figure out who we wanted to vote for, just the two of us. Then we would go over to the rest of the group and basically talk it out with them and then whenever they started mentioning what we actually wanted to happen, we would encourage them. In that way the 3 of them felt like they were making the decisions. So nobody felt like they were on the bottom and yet they were still making the decision we wanted them too. What is interesting about that was that Chelsea was definitely on the bottom, 100%. When Michael pulled that idol out the night Brendan went home, there was no doubt in my mind Sebastian was going to stick with me. Sebastian would have done anything I said. When I said jump, Sebastian would have jumped. But, I was almost positive that Chelsea was going to flip on me because I knew she did not trust me, she told Kellyn, she did not trust me on Day 2 and she was really the odd one out because I was really close with Des and Sebastian, with Kellyn being my number 1. Kellyn had a strong relationship with the three. We had a good dynamic in that we could kind of divide up those three and disseminate information and have conversations, yet still be on the same page. We were running a very tight ship over there. The hard part is in the decision of why didn’t try and get Chelsea out instead of Stephanie. That idea was very, very quietly floated at one point. It was shot down. We weren’t ready to do that.

Chelsea and Bradley Survivor Ghost Island
Photo: CBS

To digress for a moment, we though Morgan had been Idoled out. We didn’t know how she had been voted out when we were at Malolo, so we assumed nobody had flipped and just assumed original Malolo at Naviti had an Idol. So we didn’t want to vote out (Chelsea, because) we did not want to be the ones who voted out a Naviti because that kind of breaks the Naviti strong narrative and so we went with Stephanie, who I still think was the right move, because I did love spending time with her she was really great to hang out with on the beach but I just didn’t trust her at all in the game. Her (Stephanie) moves worked really well with Jacob and she was able to play Jacob like a fiddle. You know Kellyn and I stood there and we saw Stephanie playing the game and it was like we knew exactly what you are trying to do, it’s really apparent and we are not falling for it. She felt really dangerous because she was there 100% to play and do whatever she had to do to stay in the game. We knew she did not have an advantage from Ghost Island because we found the paper saying the game was closed in her bag and then we babysat her and tagged her the rest of the day so she could not look for an idol. At that point also, Kellyn and I had started to work with Michael secretly and the three of us had become very close before we swapped for the second time. There was a lot going on at Malolo, what the real bummer of it all was that I had a real interesting position I think going into the merge because Michael, Kellyn and I were so close and we had Des, Sebastian and Jenna. Kellyn had Chelsea. Had we gone ahead and voted out Libby last night it would have been a very interesting dynamic for me in terms of the social relationships that I had built.

I want to ask you about being a Superfan and getting the chance to live out the dream and play. You seemed to relish and embraced being the villain of the season.

Oh absolutely, I loved it 100%. I went in wanting to do that. I’ve been watching Survivor since I was 9, I’ve always loved the more villainous characters and so I went in with the intent of wanting to be a villain who was not vicious and didn’t bully people, but kind of was an over the top, exaggerated version of themselves. I played up my arrogance and over confident nature and some of that ridiculousness. I think it’s perfectly incapsulated in the confessional about how i’m underestimating my own game and I think i’m fantastic or something. That’s the type of thing I would never say seriously ever in real life, you know. I’m not the type of person, everyone assumes i’m the type of person who runs around and says hell I am so smart and I am so great. I would NEVER EVER do that. I wanted to play it up. I wanted to go out and I wanted to be as entertaining as possible and on the count I really think I was successful.

Trust Your Gut
Photo: Robert Voets/CBS Entertainment ©2018 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Last question, how bad was Malolo beach compared to Naviti?

(Laughs) You know the beach itself was perfectly fine, the problem was that the wind would pipe up every night. It was so windy that we froze all night and would shiver and couldn’t sleep. So my complaining was actually a strategy to make the original Malolo feel better. My angle with that was that the beaches are not fair, it’s not your fault that you’ve been losing. You can’t sleep, it’s so cold here because Naviti was on the other side of the island, so there was no wind and it was warm. It was much easier to sleep, so we were able to rest and it was not freezing. But that strategy completely backfired, it did not work at all, but that was my intention. I was not just sitting there complaining to complain for the most part, there was a method to the madness.

Thank you for chatting Bradley, I hope you enjoy watching the rest of the game.

Absolutely it was great talking to and Australia was great for the 3 weeks I was there last summer.

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