In an episode like never before, the world watched last week as not one, but two contestants quit the game of Survivor: Nicaragua.
The decision was shocking because the game was getting close to the end. In a new interview with E! Online, the quitters Kelly “Purple” Shinn, a 20-year-old nursing student, and NaOnka Mixon, a 27-year-old PE teacher, defend their decisions to quit the game. If you’re expecting any regret or remorse from these two, don’t hold your breath. NaOnka also makes it clear she has zero regret about her behavior on the show.
Excerpts from their interview with E! below -
How do you respond to those who call your quitting a slap in the face to Survivor?
“Purple” Kelly Shinn: I’m sorry to everyone who thinks that, but at the same time I was so physically ill—afterwards, I was treated for parasites and low blood pressure. [Editor's note: Aw, poor baby.]
NaOnka Mixon: I played the game exactly the way I said I would at the beginning: I would lie, cheat and steal, I would be faker than faux fur, I would pretend to be your friend and stab you in the back. I lived up to that.
NaOnka, do you have any regrets about your behavior on the show?
N: Nooooo! I will not apologize for stealing the food or talking about Kelly B.’s leg, or taking Fabio’s socks, or any other crazy antic I did. That was just my character on the show. If you’re playing a game for a million dollars you’re gonna do whatever it takes, too. It’s just that I [had to] go and be a little gangster about it.
Do you think you were justified going on the reward instead of Holly, when you were quitting the game?
N: There was no way in the world that I was giving up my spot. [I was] going out with a bang. If Holly wants to go ahead and take the rice, cool. You’re going to be here, I’m not.
Do you think you deserve to sit on the jury?
N: Hell yeah. I played the hell out of that game and made it past the merge. The game we played was a hard game—it was just under harsh conditions. I really don’t give a damn about what anybody has to say about me and Purple Kelly being on the jury. Obviously [the earlier castoffs'] game wasn’t strong enough, because they didn’t form an alliance or they should’ve researched the game a bit more to make it further. We get to vote for who gets the million, so f–k ‘em.
PK: We went through everything that everyone else had gone through: the rainy nights, absolutely every little thing together. We weren’t away from that at any point. Why separate us when we have been just as much a part of Survivor: Nicaragua as everyone else? As far as others who have never been a part of Survivor but would love to…keep trying? [Editor's note: Headdesk.]
What was your reaction to Alina crying while you checked out?
N: Alina is a drama queen! She was upset because Purple Kelly outlasted her, and that’s what she gets—she got played!
NaOnka, did you realize you were offending Sash at Tribal when you said you were the last African American player in the game?
N: Does he look all black? He has a little bit of black in him. When the camera panned to him, I started cracking up because I thought that was hilarious. Sash has part Jamaican in him. I am Negro, there is a difference.
NaOnka, did you experience any repercussions when you returned home? I heard there was a movement to get you fired from your job.
N: The YMCA does not fire people. What I did in this game has nothing to do with my real life, it has nothing to do with my job. People who try to compare how I make my money with the game I played are ignorant. It’s completely ridiculous. I knew when I was playing that game what I was gonna have to deal with, and I knew it was gonna be on TV.
When it comes to the criticism and complaints that NaOnka and Kelly should not be allowed to sit on the jury after quitting the game, Jeff Probpst agree and calls that decision a tough pill to swallow in an interview with LATimes. Probst adds, “But there was no other decision. The problem was that we had set a precedent. Janu was allowed to stay on the jury and she had a vote. If I’m say, Sash, and I’m in alliance with them and I make it to the end, and I lose by two votes, I’d have a pretty good case that if we did what we did before and let them stay, I would have won.”
A new episode of Survivor airs tonight on CBS at 8/7c.
TELL US – WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE INTERVIEW AND THE LADIES QUITTING THE GAME? DO YOU THINK THEY DESERVE TO BE ON THE JURY?