Out of all the castaways I wanted to interview during this season of Survivor, which wraps up Sunday night with a two-hour finale, Abi-Maria Gomes was the one I wanted to talk to the least. It might seem harsh, but on the show, she was harsh, abbraisive and yes, annoying. I could only imagine what she’d be like when the camera’s weren’t on her.
I’m happy to report that I was pleasantly surprised. Just hours after being voted out and barely making the final four, Survivor’s newest villain already had seem to learn from her adventure on the show, but that doesn’t mean we couldn’t talk about all the mistakes she made, I mean, how could you not!
It looked like you almost convinced Lisa and Skupin to keep you during this week’s episode. Did it feel like that when you were playing Survivor?
Abi: I felt like Lisa was on board. You know, I tried to talk to Mike, but he lied to me and said he was on board. But then Lisa told me he just wanted to get me off of his back, that’s why he said what he said. I asked Malcolm for the idol and he wouldn’t give it to me and Denise despised me in the game, so there was no working with her. And at Tribal, Michael called me the cancer of the tribe, which was wasn’t aired, so I called him an “idiot” and “moron.” I had already tried everything I could, I don’t think there was anything else I could have done. But I think that was a bad move for them.
Let’s talk about that. You were one of the only people to say, “Keep me in the game until the end, because I’m not going to win.” Did that hurt your own feelings to say that, that keeping you could help someone else’s game?
Abi: Who likes to be un-liked, of course, it hurt my feelings. It was my strategy to get me to the final three. My knee got injured on Day 1 and I didn’t want to make a big deal of it, because you don’t want to be seen as the weak link, so when I got back to reality, I had to go to the doctor’s and it ended up that I had torn my ACL and I had to undergo surgery. In the game, I was in a lot of pain, which is the reason why I was acting the way I was acting. I was tired, hungry and in pain, so bad Abi came out.
“Bad Abi” might end up on the list of all time Survivor villains, are you happy with your experience then?
Abi: In the game of Survivor, being a villain is an honour. It’s not an all saints game, it’s a devilish game, you’re going to have to end up lying, cheating and stabbing people in the back, if you’re there to win it.
Jeff Probst has said that in casting, they didn’t see you as a villain. Did you see always see yourself playing an aggressive game?
Abi: I went with really good intentions, I didn’t go there wanting to be the hated one or the villain, so no, it was just the circumstances.
Is there anything that “Good Abi” regrets that “Bad Abi” said?
Abi: It sounds like I’m a psychopath!
Haha, no, not at all.
Abi: I realize how passive aggressive I was in my approach, so yeah, I need to change that, it’s not good.
Did I see Penner give you the middle finger during Tribal council?
Abi: I don’t think it was to me, I think it was to Denise.
What surprised you the most when you were watching the show?
Abi: When you come back, everything that happened on the island, sorta feels like a dream, so I was surprised by a lot of stuff, like how I was bragging after I came back from the reward challenge and how I was calling myself a princess and a queen. I was watching and I was like, “Oh my god Abi, what are you doing? Crazy girl!”
During these interviews, I’ve learned that some castaways seem to be more affected than others by the game. How has this game and people’s reaction to you affected you?
Abi: I’m trying to turn everything into positivity. I made a lot of mistakes and I’m trying to learn from them, so yeah, it’s growth for sure!