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Survivor: Redemption Island — Stephanie Still Against Zapatera

March 31, 2011 01:59 PM by Ryan Haidet

Survivor: Redemption Island host Jeff Probst predicted that Stephanie Valencia would be the first person voted out of the game this season.  Although she did survive several Tribal Councils, Stephanie lost the latest duel to Matt on Redemption Island becoming the fifth official elimination.  In a conference call with reporters today, Stephanie addressed Probst’s predictions, talked about her reasons for aligning with Russell and declared her hate for Zapatera saying she doesn’t want anybody from that tribe to make it to the finals.  Stephanie also explained why she isn’t rooting for Matt to win the game while also discussing Ralph’s terrible spelling!  Read on for all that and loads more!

Question: Jeff Probst had predicted that you would be the first person kicked off your tribe.  Did he tell you that directly?

Stephanie Valencia: No.  He didn’t tell me that directly, but our last meeting together I felt didn’t go well at all.  I felt he was trying to like push me a little; try to get some excitement out of me.  To tell you the truth, I was ready to play this game.  I was like, “I don’t want to do another frickin interview.  I want to get on this island and play.”  So I can see where he thought I wasn’t pumped or ready to go, but I was so ready to go that I literally thought Jeff Probst talking to me was a waste of my time.  I was like, “Unless we’re in the game, then you can ask all you want.  Then I’m going to be in game mode.  But we’re not, so this is wasting my time.”  So I felt when I actually heard that comment, he doesn’t know me at all!  All of my family members and all of my friends thought the same.  They’re like, “Has he ever met you before?”  I’m like, “Apparently not.”  It’s just like he thought I was a little, cute girl who does her hair and makeup and likes to drink wine.  I thought it was hilarious when I heard that because day one on the island that’s where I was like, “OK.  I’m ready to play this game.”  I can tell he noticed something a little different from me. …  I think he was just worried that I was out there to look pretty or something.

Question: Do you think it was a bad idea to align with Russell so early?

Stephanie Valencia: No, I don’t think it was a bad idea.  I think I should have defended my decision as to why I was aligning with Russell.  I should have been more vocal about it, because once I was closed off from the other alliance I just really felt like, “Whatever.  They don’t know what they’re doing.  They don’t realize what they’re doing.”  I should have talked to them more.  “Let’s look at the big picture guys.  Russell is great in challenges.  We want to get to the merge having the most numbers.  If we get to the merge, and you want to get rid of him, then let’s fucking do it.  Let’s not throw a challenge and stop our momentum.  It’s not worth the risk.  It’s not worth the risk going into the merge without numbers.”

Question: How hard did you push to get David on your side earlier in the season?

Stephanie Valencia: We tried for David day one.  In fact, he did align with us.  It lasted like a couple of hours, and then he completely chickened out.  I think he heard what everyone was saying about Russell, and he got scared and then backed out on us.  We did try for Dave.  We really did get along.  We had ups and downs solely because we were in different alliances, but when it comes down to it, he and I could talk for hours and talk about really dumb stuff.  We could get along as friends whereas him with the tribe he has now, they’re just really tribemates.  They’re not really friends.  They’re just like day by day. …

Question: After you lost the duel to Matt on Redemption Island, you disclosed information about Zapatera to the Ometepe witnesses.  Do you think they will be able to use that info to their advantage?

Stephanie Valencia: When I told Rob that he needs to watch his back, I meant it more like I’m not worried for Rob.  I don’t really care about Rob.  I wanted to create maybe some paranoia within him so when the merge does come, the first thing on their list is to get rid of anyone Zapatera. …  I don’t want any of them to be in the top three.  If I can’t go further along in the game, well then I want to at least have some influence on how far the rest of the Zapatera tribe does — and I don’t want them to get far at all.  So if I put a little fear into Rob like, “Hey they’re going to vote you off.”  Then he needs to get his alliance on his tribe together so when the merge comes, he has all his loyalties, everyone is gonna be on his side no matter what and then they could get rid of Zapatera.

Question: Do you think your tribe would have been better off had Boston Rob been on Zapatera instead of Russell?  Do you think it would have turned out any differently?

Stephanie Valencia: Watching Rob now makes me very grateful that I didn’t have him on my tribe because he is running the game.  He’s making everyone look like a complete fool.  He keeps — even from his true alliances — he’s keeping secrets from them.  He’s really just playing it for himself, which is great.  It’s masterful.  I love it.  I love watching it.  But I’m just so glad, because I feel like with Russell, we were on the same alliance.  He was honest with me all the time.  He would tell me everything that was going on.  I just wouldn’t want to get worked by Rob. …  He’s actually more dangerous than Russell.

Question: Everybody I have interviewed from this season has said they hope Matt gets back in the game and wins the whole thing.  Is he who you are rooting for?

Stephanie Valencia: Ummm.  No.  I’m rooting for anyone who is Ometepe.  If it’s Matt, that’s awesome.  I think he has a cool story, but I don’t know if that’s really considered playing the game if he’s been on the island that long.  I would want to see more effort on his part.  I know he’s winning all of these challenges, but I do want to see a player who has to go through the whole Survivor thing with everyone.  I think the social aspect of the game is really what it makes it so unique.  He’s isolated right now, so we’re not seeing what he would do under different circumstances.  I want Ometepe to win.  As long as it’s no one Zapatera, I’m fine with whoever the winner is.  I’m enjoying watching Rob and Phil.  They’re hilarious.  Grant is cute, but don’t really know much about his game strategy or anything from watching.  And the girls look pretty.  So anyone Ometepe I’m OK with.

Question: Ralph is possibly the worst speller in Survivor history.  Every vote he casts are way off base, and I think yours was the worst.  Did anybody bring that up after Tribal Council?  Did you guys make fun of him at all?

Stephanie Valencia: I don’t use Krista’s real name.  Her name is “Krasta.”  That has been an inside joke for months. …  It was an inside joke because it was just like, how do you get K-R-A when you’re trying to spell Krista?  It’s OK.  Spelling or no good spelling, Ralph is doing a good job in the game.  I don’t want to make him feel less because he has a spelling problem.  He’s accomplished a lot in his life, and he’s a hard worker.  I respect hard workers.

Images courtesy of CBS.

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