Lamar Odom on not playing a 'kiss-ass' Celebrity Big Brother game
He didn't really understand the game he was playing, yet had Lamar Odom somehow made it to the end of Celebrity Big Brother, he very well may have won the entire thing. Which is why he was voted out on Monday's double-elimination episode of the show. Lamar's honesty, heart, and transparency made him a favorite with both viewers and contestants alike, so when Todd Bridges won the night's first Veto competition and took himself off the block, Miesha Tate and Todrick Hall evicted Lamar instead.
We spoke to Lamar the morning after his elimination to get the fifth-place finisher's thoughts on his time inside the Big Brother house and his much more important life connection to Todd. He also has some strong thoughts when it comes to Todrick Hall. (Also make sure to read our exit interview with Todd Bridges.)
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Are you surprised Todrick sent you out the door instead of Cynthia?
LAMAR ODOM: No, not at all. 'Cause I felt like maybe he thought I was more of a threat than Cynthia, so I took it as a compliment at the end of the day. But Cynthia's a fighter. At that point in the game, everybody could taste victory and, obviously, is willing to do whatever it takes to win. So he has a fight on his hands with Cynthia. She's a great woman, and I know she just won't give up.
Todrick said he was evicting you because he could not imagine the house without Cynthia in it. What did you make of that? Is that the real reason?
I don't know. He set that up slick, didn't he? He had his own way of doing things as we all [saw] when he won the HOH. You can't get your emotions involved when it comes to his decision-making.
When did you realize that Miesha and Todrick were an unbreakable final two that were going to be pretty tough to beat?
During the last, maybe, two weeks, We kind of picked up that they had this just incredible bond. Right away, everyone considered Miesha as a threat because she won the first HOH. And obviously, you can look at her demeanor and the look on her face to see that she really wanted it. She really was gonna play hard. I think in there everyone took her as a threat. So, it was kind of all eyes on Miesha and whoever she moved around or whoever she gravitated to. She had the spotlight on her and we got to see a full effect, especially when it came to Todrick.
In your own words, you said you tried to be as transparent as possible, and I think that's something that viewers really liked about you because there's a lot of fakeness in that house and you kept it real. As you were doing that, though, did you know that was going to hurt you in the game?
No, honestly, 'cause I didn't really know the game and how it's played. It was my first time ever watching Big Brother, but just so happens the first time that I'm watching I am actually in the house! So that was my first experience with it, but I don't think I would've played it differently anyway, 'cause I'm not a kiss-ass. All I can just do is be a real dude. I just played. I just thought I played it the best way I could and whatever way made me comfortable.
I think it's something the other players ultimately liked and respected about you as well. So how do you think you would have done had you made it to the end in terms of getting votes to win?
Well, I think I would've done pretty well, and I told them if they have [the] opportunity to take me out, they should do it 'cause I was gonna channel my inner Mamba and end up winning it.
You really struggled with voting people out sometimes, especially Shanna Moakler. What was that like for you?
'Cause I didn't really have a problem with Shanna, not the way the other house members did. So it took me some time to even cast my vote 'cause I wanted to be a man about my decision. Like I said, at that point in the game, [it] wasn't anything personal against anybody and I just wanted to make the best decision for Lamar, 'cause I gotta live with that.
How did you feel about that decision after the fact?
I just felt like I always went along with what the house wanted, and at this point in my life, I don't really make decisions for anybody else. I make decisions for myself.
You mentioned you were figuring the game out as you went, and I know you didn't realize that the Diary Room sessions were interviews for TV at first. So how and when did you finally learn what they were really for?
I was shocked! I didn't know what to do 'cause they kept asking me so many questions about my ex-wife [Khloé Kardashian]. Sometimes my diary sessions went a little too long and I think I let a little bit too much out, but again, I was just being honest and transparent on how I was feeling at the time. And I wouldn't take anything back at the end of the day.
So you were like, "Why are they asking me all this stuff?"
My gosh, I couldn't believe it. They were making me relive everything.
What was the hardest thing about being in the Big Brother house?
They take your phone and no sunlight. Being a little sleep-deprived can kind of turn you cuckoo a little bit. But they feed us. We had everything we wanted to eat — every cake, candy, cookie, every fruit, dry fruit, every milk and non-lactating milk. I just had to watch what I was eating, and I was eating too much cake and sugar. CBS did a really good job of treating us well.
Yeah, they showed us some footage of you getting up in the middle of the night to get some of that cake.
But I couldn't even sing in the house. Not that I'm a good singer or anything like that, but you know, just looking for a little bit of joy and normalcy, and it was all hard to find.
What was it like being tied to Todrick for 24 hours?
The worst part about it was what I had to wear. But my grandmother always told me to remain humble, and I think my friend Todrick is going to suffer a little bit after coming out of the house 'cause of his inability to remain humble in pressure times.
And it's a strategic game, but it's a social game too, and you have to get people to want to vote for you at the end. Do you think he might be in a little trouble with that one?
Yeah, I think even if he wins it, he won't win it. Nobody likes somebody where you can't get a word in, that's always right. I don't know if he thought he thought he wasn't bragging about his shows and how he became a star and his climb to success to being a celebrity — you know, no offense, but just kind of going on and on and on.
I think it was the last day or the second to last day, I was sitting next to Todd. I was like, "Man, he keeps talking about himself. I think he's gonna cause me to stroke." 'Cause it was just like, all right enough already, you know? Nobody wants to hear about you the whole day. That's not really rational to think that. I just wish the best for him though. I still want to go to one of his shows and see how it is.
Finally, you asked Todd to be your sober coach due to his history and experience. How much bigger is that than the game you were there to play?
Being a part of Celebrity Big Brother and having an opportunity to get paid during the pandemic when it was hard for some people to rub two dimes together was a blessing. And then being able to find my sober coach, who has 33 years being sober and has had to deal with some tough times and knows what it's like to be a celebrity from at a really early age, I think was the overall one for me. I thank God for the opportunity.
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