She said going to Tribal Council would be a “blessing in disguise,” but the blessing then turned into a nightmare. Elizabeth Markham thought she was part of the power pair of the Brains tribe, but underestimated the tribe’s wildcard in Debbie, who flipped the script and got the rest of the tribe to vote her out instead.
Liz called into Entertainment Weekly Radio (SiriusXM, channel 105) this morning to talk about her all-too-brief stay on the island and what went wrong out there, and you can hear the entire interview right here on the InsideTV Podcast. Some highlights from our chat:
On calling losing the challenge a blessing in disguise:
“Once you give those confident words, you know it’s going to make the show.”
On Jeff Probst’s comments on the difference between intelligence and emotional intelligence
“I think that emotional intelligence is a much bigger component of Survivor. Just about everybody can figure out how to count votes and know if they’re in the majority. The most important thing is knowing who wants to work with you and who doesn’t.”
On why she bonded with Peter:
“I didn’t really feel like I could trust him that much in the first three or four days of the game, but he became more open with me about his thoughts on the game and on strategy, and I felt like I could actually talk to him about those things while the others I couldn’t and had to keep my mouth shut. So when there is someone that you can be open with and others that you can’t, then you’re going to click with the person you can talk with more genuinely.”
On if she underestimated Debbie:
“I think in the first few days, definitely. The wacky attitude and the bluster sort of conceals that she is very smart, very perceptive, and knows what she’s doing. Maybe a lot of people can underestimate her. I think probably most of our tribe did, at least at first. One of her major strengths is her optimism. When things were not good for us on the Brains tribe, she was the one who was the glue holding everyone together. If we had gone to Tribal on day 1, day 2, maybe day 3, she would have been sent home, but we had a big rainstorm one night and we were all cold and cuddled and shivering, and she was the one who was optimistic. She was the one who has making everyone feel better.”
On how much of the vote was a vote against her and how much was a vote aimed at Peter:
“Probably about half and half. I think I felt like it was more directed at him before I watched the episode. Bet seeing Neal, Aubry, and Debbie talking, it felt more directed at me than I had thought.
On if she thought she or Peter was going to get voted out after the tie:
“I thought it was going to be Peter. I thought that they liked him significantly less than they liked me, and with a swamp probably imminent I thought they would take the chance. When I felt the shade being thrown during Tribal, I probably should have fought back more, but I thought it was going to be Peter and I thought playing ignorant would help me later in the game.”
On when she first suspected she might be in trouble:
“It was a little bit before Tribal, maybe 20 minutes, half-an-hour. I sensed a shift in attitude from Joe where he stopped wanting to make eye contact with me and Peter. At that point, I could tell something was up.”
On how she got cast thanks to former player Stephen Fishbach:
“We met on OkCupid, maybe three or four years ago. We went on a couple of dates. We probably hit it off more as friends than as a real romantic connection. And one of the first things he said to me was, ‘I saw your profile. My first thought was, you should be on Survivor.’ I guess he planted the idea in my mind and later on it became a thing.”
On the brutal conditions:
“It was routinely over 100 degrees nearly ever day. We’d go in the ocean to cool off. It was also tough in terms of insects, all the bites. Several of us got some nasty infections. I actually got quite a bad staph infection in my shoulder. I got back and had the surgery in Phnom Penh shortly after I was voted out. So it was pretty punishing for everybody.”
To hear the entire interview — including Liz’s take on her mini-meltdown, the one thing she wishes she could go back and change, and what surprised her watching it all play back on TV — click on the audio player below.
But we also have two other interviews to float your boat. First up, Amanda Peet talks to us about her awesome HBO comedy Togetherness. And then former Walking Dead showrunner Glen Mazzara discusses his new horror project, a sequel to The Omen called Damien that will be airing on A&E and features a reunion with another former Walking Dead alum.
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. No iTunes? No problem. You can also download the entire podcast right here. 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.