He only had a few more days and a few more Tribal Councils to go. He had just won an individual reward challenge and enjoyed a day of baths, massages, and steak kebabs. And then it all went bad.
Joe Del Campo was medically evacuated on day 34 of Survivor: Kaôh Rōng after he overdid it on his reward feast and his body was unable to handle the sudden intake of food. After a few visits from the Survivor medical team, Joe was officially pulled from the game.
But what happened next? We found out when Joe called into Entertainment Weekly Radio (SiriusXM, channel 105) to give us all the behind-the-scenes scoop around his untimely exit, and you can hear the entire interview right here on the InsideTV Podcast. Read on for the highlights from our chat.
On the steak kebabs that did him:
“Let me tell you, that satay was absolutely delicious. I’m not a big meat eater, but it was so good that I couldn’t stop eating. If you put that satay in a line, it was about three feet of satay.”
On what happened after he was medically evacuated out of the game:
“Dr. Joe said that unless something happened in the next couple of hours, I needed catheterization. And that was to be done on the mainland of Cambodia at some hospital, which kind of scared me. So I thought, no. So they took me into a sick bay there and they started treating me on the ride over with some painkiller medication and then a laxative kind of thing. Fortunately, within that two-hour time limit I was able to come back and not be in pain and be back on the mend.”
On how long it took for him to feel like his old self again:
“I was back at Ponderosa and it was probably three days, because it was very painful having to get that stuff out of my system, as you can imagine. If I had been able to do that on the island, I would have pretty much been out of commission those next couple of days on the island. So they did the right thing in pulling me because there is no way I could have pursued the challenges — well, as you know I was usually the first one out in the challenges — with any degree of ability.”
On if he ever thought about slowing down on the meat:
“I had lost 20 pounds at that point… It was just so good and the setting was good. I did not think about that. I just thought about how wonderful it tasted. And I felt good into the evening, and going into the early morning hours I felt pretty good.”
On making connections with people up to and over 50 years younger:
“Going into this, certainly one of the questions was: ‘You’re 71-years-old. Are you going to be able to communicate with people that are 50 years younger than you?’ And I said, ‘Yes, I was a hostage negotiator. If I can negotiate someone from either not committing suicide or giving up a hostage, I certainly can talk to other castaways that have a little sand in their pants and are hungry.’ So they kind of laughed at that. It’s true, though. I have pretty good socialization skills and knew I could do that as far as being able to talk and communicate and survive socially.”
On if he would have been loyal to Aubry to the end:
“Basically, on day one when she was having some troubles and got dehydrated and everything, we made a commitment that we would go to the end. And I know that happens and sometimes you’re not successful with that. But I did. That’s the way I am. Sometimes that’s not the way it works in the game and you have to be a little more flexible and give up a partnership for you to succeed. But yes, I was going to go to the end with Aubry.”
On why he resisted changing his vote before Tribal Councils:
“I thought we had something etched in stone and this may be something with me being elderly and fixed in my routine. I was unable to do that on the fly. Other people were able to do that. Because I had in my mind what was the best thing for myself and the best thing for our alliance. But apparently not, because several times there they voted opposite of what I was going to vote.”
On how he thinks he would have done had he made it to the end:
“I think based on maybe some friendships I may have pulled a vote, maybe two. But people look at that game in terms of how you did in terms of how many alliances you formed and who you have recruited. People are going to look at your game, and Joe was kind of behind the scenes where you say, ‘Is Joe still here?’ With the people who are the diehards and have followed all these years, I probably would not have won. I might have gotten a vote, but that would have been it.”
On his connection to Rudy from season 1:
“I did apply for season 1 when Rudy applied back in 2000, but did not make the cut. I watched the show for a few years and then got with Rudy two years ago and he said, ‘You ought to send a tape in. You’re 71. Jeff hasn’t had a guy who was over 70.’ And I did. I was fortunate enough that Jeff saw in me potential and I got on the show and feel very fortunate.”
Click on the audio player below to hear the rest of the interview, including Joe’s thoughts on winning an individual challenge and why he and Jason did not see eye to eye out on the island. (Joe’s Survivor interview starts at the 40-minute mark.)
But first, we start things off with a truly dynamic duo. Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin stopped by the studio to chat about their Netflix comedy Grace and Frankie. Naturally, they also discussed 9 to 5, possibly reuniting with Dolly Parton, the start of their friendship, and their favorite projects of each other. It’s a conversation with two living legends that you don’t want to miss.
Then we are joined by another true titan as the amazing Carol Kane shares stories from the set of Taxi and tells us what it was really like working with Andy Kaufman. She also talks about her current role on Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, while revisiting her time working on The Princess Bride. It’s a chat that is as enlightening as it is delightful. (The Carol Kane interview starts 25 minutes in.)
You can listen to the whole podcast above. Or, since we’re on iTunes, you can subscribe for free and take the podcast with you. To send a question to the InsideTV Podcast team, follow us on Twitter @InsideTVPodcast. And to hear more interviews and television discussion and debate, check out Entertainment Weekly Radio on SiriusXM, channel 105.