SURVIVOR: Island of the Idols

With season 41 of Survivor delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, EW is reaching back into the reality show's past. We sent a Survivor Quarantine Questionnaire to a batch of former players to fill out with their thoughts about their time on the show as well as updates on what they've been up to since. Each weekday, EW will post the answers from a different player.

Many a Survivor player has said things they regret about others in confessional interviews and then breathed a sigh of relief when those comments did not make it on air. Victoria Baamonde may be the opposite. The sixth-place finisher from Survivor: Edge of Extinction doesn't know how to feel about her potty mouth not ending up on TV. "I also have a really foul mouth and I'm pretty mean when I don't like you," she says. "CBS didn't air any of my cursing or s--- talking. Don't know whether I'm happy about that or not."

Baamonde should at least be pretty happy with her game. Although she did not win, she made it all the way to day 36. And who knows how she would have done had there not been two idols in play used on two people that had already been voted out of the game. Here, the former Bronx waitress dishes about what really happened out on the island as she serves up an unfiltered Quarantine Questionnaire.

It's Like the Worst Cocktail Party Ever
Victoria Baamonde on 'Survivor: Edge of Extinction'
| Credit: Robert Voets/CBS

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: First off, what have you been up to since appearing on Survivor?

VICTORIA BAAMONDE: It's been a hot minute since I've been on Survivor. Can you believe it's been three years? I'm not waitressing anymore and got back into working with animals. I've been working at the Center for Avian and Exotic Medicine for two years now. Me and my boyfriend of three years (who I had met two weeks before filming Survivor) just split up and I ditched my roommates, so it's just me and [my guinea pig] Peeve in our new one-bedroom in Astoria.

What is your proudest moment ever from playing Survivor?

My proudest moment was probably blindsiding Aubry (sorry, girl).

 What is your biggest regret from your Survivor experience?

I don't really have too many regrets, but if I could change anything, I'd say I'd have tried to create better bonds with people sooner on. I'm not really good at making friends. I think people see me as standoffish, but it's only because I'm really awkward and have bad social anxiety. I'd also look for idols more than I did. 

What's something that will blow fans' minds that happened in your season but never made it to TV?

I don't know if it's mind-blowing, but me and Rick were pretty good friends — despite my not trusting him and wanting him gone. [Laughs] One time right after a challenge, we were all getting back to camp and Rick suddenly and quietly took the machete and ran away. We were all so exhausted that no one followed him. Even though I wanted to die, I was like "C'mon, guys, we can't let him off that easy!" 

I figured he had an idol clue, so I ran after him over this giant staircase in a cliff that led to what we called "Secret Beach." I caught up to him and followed him to the beach and he just sat down and started making fire. We started talking and ended up hanging out until it got dark. I even gave him fire-making tips. I mean, I didn't believe he was only there to make fire. I assumed he'd idol-hunt as soon as I left. So, eventually, I left and hid behind a tree for about an hour, but I just heard him whacking the flint the whole time. He really was just making fire. From there, we were buds. We share the same sense of humor and kept each other sane. 

It Smells Like Success
Victoria Baamonde on 'Survivor: Edge of Extinction'
| Credit: Timothy Kuratek/CBS

How do you feel about the edit you got on the show?

I don't hate it, but I don't love it. All in all, I think they made me look good, which I appreciate. I think my game was a little too heady for it to really translate. I wasn't "in the shadows" like everyone says. I was a very active strategist and was able to always know what was going on. There was not a single vote that surprised me (I never voted incorrectly, until I was voted out). My game play, though, isn't flashy and I never pandered to the camera. I really didn't even consider the fact that this would be on TV one day; I was just there to win. I also have a really foul mouth and I'm pretty mean when I don't like you. CBS didn't air any of my cursing or s--- talking. Don't know whether I'm happy about that or not. 

What was it like coming back to regular society after being out there? Was there culture shock or an adjustment?

When I was first handed back my phone, I genuinely couldn't remember how to turn it on and it felt really weird to use, but that feeling went away after like an hour. My first night home I woke up in the middle of the night and my boyfriend at the time said I was asking, "Where is everyone?" and apparently I thought he was Chris. That was the only dream I had about it though. So many people who play say they have these emotional or spiritual awakenings or get massively f---ed up in the head. I have to say, I am exactly the same now as I was before. 

Was there ever a point either during the game or after you got back where you regretted going on the show?


Whom do you still talk, text, or email with from your season?

I talk to Gavin the most. We mostly give each other life updates and shoot the s---. He was born two days after me — I like to call him my brother. We were really close out there and are still good friends. I wish he lived closer. 

"Awkward" - Ron Clark, Lauren O'Connell, Gavin Whitson, Victoria Baamonde and Julie Rosenberg on the twelfth episode of SURVIVOR: Edge of Extinction airing, Wednesday, May 1st (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Photo: Screen Grab/CBS Entertainment ©2019 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Gavin Whitson and his castmates on 'Survivor: Edge of Extinction'
| Credit: CBS

Do you still watch Survivor, and, if so, what's your favorite season you were not on and why?

Of course I still watch! My favorite season isn't original: It's probably Heroes vs. Villains. It has all the great characters I grew up watching and loving, and loving to hate. 

Who's one player from another Survivor season you wish you could have played with or against and why?

I think I'd like to play with Gabby P. We just seem really similar, and I feel like I'd be able to trust her. She's also pretty bad at lying from what I can tell, and a loyal person. She can cry and I'd tell her to snap out of it. It'd be great. 

If you could make one change to any aspect of Survivor, what would it be and why?

I'd get rid of most of the idols and advantages. They just benefit different people so differently. Everyone idol-hunts at the beginning, right? So idols are snatched up fast. But someone like me, a small female, is in huge danger at the beginning of the game when the whole mantra is "keep the tribe strong." Isolating myself for hours idol-hunting would put a huge target on my back that would pretty much get me immediately axed.

Mid-game, it's the people who are on the outs that have the freedom to idol-hunt. Look at Rick — he had nothing to lose! If I did stunts like that mid-game, I'd ruin things for myself. I just think too many idols overwhelm the strategy aspect of the game. Some are cool, but the saturation needs to go. 

Finally, would you play again if asked?

Yes! Jeff, did you lose my number?

To keep track of our daily Survivor Quarantine Questionnaires and get all the latest updates, check out EW's Survivor hub and follow Dalton Ross on Twitter.

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Episode Recaps

SURVIVOR: Island of the Idols

Strangers starve themselves on an island for our amusement in the hopes of winning a million dollars, as host Jeff Probst implores them to "DIG DEEP!"

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