1:12pm PT by Kimberly Nordyke
'Survivor: Blood vs. Water': Katie Collins on Being Defeated by Her Own Mother and Losing in the Rock Draw
It came down to mother vs. daughter on Wednesday's night Survivor: Blood vs. Water.
After Laura Morett won the Redemption Island duel, that left Katie Collins and her mother, former Survivor champion Tina Wesson, to battle it out for the win. After Tina pulled ahead of Katie, she asked her daughter if she was OK with her winning. Katie assured her it was fine, and Tina went on to an emotional win, knocking Katie out of the game and putting her on the jury.
On Thursday, Katie talked to The Hollywood Reporter about her time on the island, getting eliminated via a rock draw and what she thinks of her mother's attempt to set her up with Vytas Baskauskas.
I was so sorry to hear about your brother (Taylor Lee Collins died Dec. 3 in a car accident at age 25). My thoughts are with you and your family.
It's been hard to go through this. But all the fans and the CBS family and everybody that watches the show have been so gracious and kind, and we are very appreciative of all you guys.
In your final Redemption Island duel, it looked like you and your mother were both determined to fight until the end, but we saw an earlier conversation where Tina suggested throwing her game and letting you win.
You saw last night that we had that sweet moment where we were holding hands and that internal battle she was struggling with. She said, "Katie, if it came to it, I'd let you win." I told her, "Why don't we just try to do the best we can and may the best man win?" I didn't want to her lay down her game for me, nor would I do that for her. She knew I wasn't going to hold a grudge or be mad either way. Being a mom and having to do that, knowing it's over for her daughter -- that’s the whole premise of the loved ones season. These were moments where you had to think, "Could I really do this?" We talked about it. Unfortunately, I went home, but I wanted her to play the best game she could play.
What was your reaction to hearing her comments about possibly trying to play matchmaker to you and Vytas?
I honestly wasn't surprised. I didn't know she said all those things. But the past few years, she has really been gunning for all these grandbabies, and it has not stopped. I was [walking] with her last week, and she said, "OK, Katie, would you do in vitro?" I said, "Mom, I'm 26 years old. I have time. It's not like I'm expiring that soon." But she is not letting it go. It was not just a thing on the beach in the Philippines; it's been nonstop. It was a little embarrassing on national TV. Now I have all these guys saying, "Oh, I'll be your caveman." Thanks, Mom! Some guy in North Dakota wants to marry me. I think she's hoping Bradley Cooper is a Survivor fan and will call me and marry me and make grandbabies -- that's her best-case scenario.
When you were eliminated, what was your thought process going into the jury, since your mom still had a shot at getting back in?
Obviously, if my mom [ended up in] the final three, she of course was going to get my vote. I was thinking that was my best-case scenario: My mom gets back in and hopefully with people who maybe caused some waves and made some enemies, and then she can win this thing. And then on Ponderosa [where the players stay after being eliminated], I can try to do my part and throw her name out there and [get her votes].
You were eliminated in a rock draw -- only the second ever in Survivor history. Any regrets about how that went down?
I wouldn't have redone that night for the world. It didn't go my way, but it was such a perfect time to leave it up to chance, and best-case scenario, Tyson [Apostol] draws the right rock, and me, Ciera [Eastin] and Hayden [Moss] knock out Monica [Culpepper] and Gervase [Peterson], and then my mom's back in the game and me and her are in the final three. There are so many what-ifs. We didn't know Tyson had the idol. He didn't think he was not safe. I think he went into tribal thinking he had it in the bag. For us to make that move scared him big-time. When I went home, he was frightened and relieved at the same time. But it was 100 percent worth it; I wouldn't have made any other decisions. I was fairly safe that night; they were gunning for Hayden. But even if I'd gotten through, I was next to go, and it was a good move on our part. Obviously it was awesome to watch, but I didn't like seeing myself go home.
Would you play Survivor again?
It's funny, because you're starving and exhausted, and that's the hardest thing I've ever done, and [while you're out there], you definitely don't want to go back and do it all over again. Once you have a few nice meals and you're back in the grind of work -- it almost reminds me of Hook. He goes back to Neverland and it's fun and an adventure, and you wish for that excitement again. I think I would. If you'd asked me on the island, I would have said, "Oh my gosh, no." I lost 13 pounds and I was scared of the tarantulas and scorpions and snakes, but when you're well fed and it's over, you do want to go back, so now the answer is yes.
Would you want to play again with your mom or another loved one, or would you prefer playing solo?
If they did another one and asked my mom to go, absolutely. If it was just me, absolutely. I'd do either one. Knowing what me and my mom went through, I don't know how we would change our game. It definitely took a toll on us individually, but it didn't take a toll on our relationship, so if I could play the game again like that, I'd for sure do it.