Greg “Tarzan” Smith is the latest castaway voted off “Survivor: One World.” He tells Zap2it in his exit interview that the girls were smarter post-merge.
Are you glad you did “Survivor”? Was it everything you hoped/expected it to be?
“I’m immensely glad that I did ‘Survivor.’ I really am an adventurer and it was an adventure. I starved, I didn’t sleep, I lost 25 lbs. I developed a protein deficiency … I love the interplay socially. It was like playing a chess game. I loved that. The problem was it was an 18-tier chess game with 18 brains and that made it incomparably fun for me. I had a great time. And I lost the weight that i needed to lose.”
In hindsight, do you still think it was a good strategy to turn on the men?
“In all fairness, that isn’t how it went down. In the beginning, it was me that formed a cadre of 5 and it was me who included Colton. The girls didn’t like him and the guys hated him, so I convinced me, Troyzan, Jonas and Leif to bring Colton in and we made a promise and I understand in a game like this it’s smarter to keep your promises.
When we reunited and became Tikiano, my cadre of 5 had lost their compass. I approached Troyzan and realized he was uncertain if he was still going to make it a boy/girl game and in my mind the girls were much smarter. They knew to keep it female, but he didn’t. And I lost the nucleus of my atom. And then I knew that I had to have 6 guys and a girl for the math to work in our favor.
The girl would be Alicia and I told her, if I can get the guys to reunite, it’ll be 7 to 5 and if you join us, I’ll convince them to take you down at least to Top 5. I told her if I can’t do it, I’ll join you. So I went back, I even approached Mike … I gave it a shot with Jaybird … And then even my pal Troyzan wasn’t sure. And Leif and Jonas, to be honest, they’re not good chess players. So no matter what you told them, you always worried it didn’t register, especially Jonas. That’s dangerous in this game.
So I realized I cannot unite the guys. I needed 6. I went back to Alicia, said listen, I’m sorry, I can’t, the guys aren’t together anymore … so since they were being kind of silly, I told you if they did that, I would join you. Alicia became my companion with the girls.
I tried to tell Troyzan these girls are united, the boys have to stick together and he didn’t get it. And it went down bad for him.”
Did you really think you weren’t a threat to win the money or was that all an act to get the girls to take you to the finals?
“I didn’t really need to go to Top 3. I needed the adventure, I needed to lose weight. I never needed to be the Top 3. You want to win the game, but when we finally got down to six, I had developed a penchant for a couple of girls that I thought deserved to be the Top 3, who I wanted to be the Top 3.
The boys last night had no idea that I’d helped people get rid of them. They thought it was all Kim. Kim was part of it for sure, but I had helped. They didn’t realize I had been their enemy since my betrayal. So by me revealing that I helped get rid of them … if the guys like me, I win. So I said something that would aggravate the guys. I also said I was a millionaire … by saying I was a millionaire, what does that do to the average person? They resent you, they don’t want to vote for you. I promised [the women], and I kept my word, that I would say those things that hurt me.”
Watching the show back, did you have any idea Kim was being such a strong strategic player?
“Well, here’s the irony. Actually I gave her more credit than she deserved … She was more mercurial in her decisions than I realized. At the very end of the game, she was considering possibly going against Chelsea, which was the knightess of her cadre. I didn’t know she was that mercurial … Her angelic behavior helped her no doubt about it. And she knew enough to lie to Alicia at the end of the game. When you’re playing this game, you have to be somewhat deceptive. Sometimes you have to tell the enemy the same thing you’re telling your friend so the enemy gets side-tracked.”
When you got eliminated, was there any particular woman you were rooting for?
“Definitely a couple of women which I thought ought to be in the Top 3 of the five that were left. And I tried, I actually tried, if they’d just listened to me, I tried to make it so by the tactic. But my efforts were rebuffed and I was voted out. You’ll notice that truly I was humbled by being able to last that long. I was truly grateful that the girls kept me until I could meet my wife. They even took out Kat because she didn’t choose me. I was very flattered by their kindness.”
The three-hour “Survivor: One World” finale airs Sunday, May 13 starting at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBS.