After losing the “Hero Olympics” race against a backwards-running J.T., it was curtains for James Clement. The (former?) fan favorite had a controversial run on Survivor: Heroes vs Villains, getting into wars of words with Stephenie, Tom, and Colby, as well as tossing a bag at 50-year-old Randy after a challenge. Now, after being voted off due to his leg injury, James talks about why he does not owe Stephenie an apology, the reason his mom is so upset with the editing, and which of his three unceremonious Survivor exits hurts the most.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: So, how many minutes did it take you to get drunk after you were voted off?
JAMES CLEMENT:I kinda got voted out pretty soon, so I did my thing. And it’s always relaxing when you get a couple of shots and a couple of drinks and think about what was going on. So it took me a while. It took me like a good bottle and half to get drunk. I had to drink some for everybody. A little drink for everybody still out there. So it took about a bottle and half to get a good buzz.
You were blindsided in China with two immunity idols in your pocket, taken out of Micronesia due to a bum finger, and now kicked off due to an injured leg. Those are three tough ways to go. Which was the most frustrating?
Probably the first time, because I had control but I just wasn’t paying attention. I loved the game of Survivor and had always watched the game of Survivor, so I kinda knew having two idols was a bad thing. The finger was just craziness — it was a precaution. And the knee thing, I was playing the game and doing the best I could. Definitely getting taken out with the two idols was the suckiest exit in my Survivor career so far.
It seemed like they told you that you were going home beforehand this time. Is that right? Did you know it was you?
Yeah. I lost the race, and if I had competed and done better in the race, or if I had done better in the challenges, I would have made a plea to be in the game a little bit longer. But I just wanted to win, and I knew at this point [me going] was the best thing for the team. And the good always has to win over the bad, so if I’m not in a position to help out and they think Colby might be a little more beneficial for the team, vote me out. I told Rupert, J.T., and Amanda “This time, I really don’t know what’s going on with my leg, and if I can’t run, or do what I can do, or perform in a certain matter, then vote me out.” I didn’t know they were gonna do it. Percentage-wise I felt it was about 95 percent that they were gonna get rid of me. So they did and it wasn’t surprising. And I don’t blame them.
But that’s a pretty big turn from three days prior when you were fighting to stay in over Tom and saying how much more valuable you were than him. Was the leg just not healing the way you thought it would?
I just didn’t know what was going on with the leg. It didn’t hurt. Nothing was really swollen or anything. I just couldn’t walk. But I pretty much did the same spiel in that episode. I said, “If you think Tom is better than I am with a bum leg, keep Tom. If you think he’ll benefit you as far as being a better teammate, go with Tom.” And they felt that Tom wasn’t a better teammate.
You had some pretty harsh words for Colby. I mean, “Superman in a girdle” — that’s pretty rough.
Man, look. They made Colby [in Australia] look like one of the best Survivors ever for me. But out here he just wanted to stare at the water and embrace nature. Yeah, embrace nature, but it’s challenge time! We’re trying to get together and beat somebody! What’s going on, Colby? Help out! And he wasn’t doing that. It was really like Superman in a fat suit. My Superman was a big ball of skinny mush.
Do you regret anything that you said to or about Stephenie?
I honesty love television, and I love the way they pick stuff. They made it seem like I was being a bully or being aggressive, and meanwhile I’m talking about working together as a team. And then to approach me in a certain situation, I do believe that I am an adult and should have a chance to respond. Granted, my girlfriend tells me I have tone issues and might come off a little bit aggressive. But if you listen to the words I’m saying, I’m not trying to hurt nobody. I’m like, “Baby, let’s play as a team.” But if you still come at me in a certain matter, I do believe I have the time to retort and speak my mind in certain situations. I’m definitely not going to apologize. I mean, we’re back, I’m sure she’s a great person in life. Now, would I go and hang out with Stephenie? Probably not. And I don’t feel like I owe Stephenie any apologies because the aggression shown toward her was only reflected because she had shown it toward me. You know, I’m not that guy to go out and mess with nobody unless they started with me,
What about throwing your bag down on Randy at the challenge? That wasn’t exactly the height of sportsmanship.
That was honestly funny, because I thought it was a big joke. And then he threw mud in my face, and it was really kind of an antagonizing situation. And you never know. Yeah, he’s an older guy, but I’ve met older guys that you have to have on your mind. Yeah, I’m James and I’m big, whatever, but shoot, my sister used to beat me up all the time. Girls beat me up half my life. You can’t take nobody by what they look like. So I thought the guy was going to be more of a challenge, and didn’t want to take any chances. So yeah, I went a little bit…I mean I didn’t do him that bad, but I did go a little bit aggressive toward him. And I was a little bit excited because he had got me a little bit excited and worked up. It was a game. I didn’t really need to throw the bag at him, I was just kind of…. Man, we had to pull together and we were working as a team at that time and I was caught in the moment — or that California saying, having fun with it — and I got a bit excited. I didn’t mean to throw the bag toward him and I did try to apologize to him. At the time he wasn’t accepting it, but he’s come around lately.
You’ve won it twice before, but what do you think the odds are that you win the $100,000 fan’s vote this season?
None! I love TV and I love reality shows and how they can edit you and make you look in a certain light. They edited me like I’m a wild, crazy animal and I’m going around bullying people. So the chances of me winning the fan’s favorite player vote? It’s not gonna happen. My poor mama, she just don’t like the editing either. I’d rather my mom be happy and not think everybody’s being mean to her son. I’d much rather my mom be happy than me winning the fan’s thing again.
Before I let you go, I’m actually feeling kinda hungry all of a sudden. Do you have any bananas for me?
Hey, man, get your own bananas! If you’re hungry and felling like you need to get something to eat, get yourself up. Now, if I got the bananas, yeah, I would be more than happy to offer you one, because that’s what you’re supposed to do in the politically correct world. So I’ll share a banana with you. I’ll give you a piece of it.
To enjoy an exclusive deleted scene from the latest episode, plus special pep talks that James and Tyson recorded for themselves before the game, check out the video player below. And for all the Survivor scoop sent right to you, follow me on Twitter @EWDaltonRoss.
Image Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS
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