2:15pm PT by Josh Wigler
'Survivor David vs. Goliath' Contestant Blames Elimination on Off-Screen Feud
[This story contains spoilers for episode three of Survivor: David vs. Goliath, "I Am Goliath Strong."]
Survivor: David vs. Goliath castaway Jeremy Crawford, voted out in the most recent episode of the series, claims there are reasons for his exit beyond what was shown on television.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Jeremy claimed it wasn't his feud with fellow Goliath tribe member Natalie Cole that led to his downfall, as depicted on the show. Instead, he said he was targeted by contestant Angelina Keeley after making a joke about her relationship with ally John Hennigan, saying they were in "a showmance," similar to the flirtation featured on-screen between Dan Rengering and Kara Kay, also members of the Goliath tribe.
"The showmance was like Dan and Kara's, except Angelina was into John like Dan was into Kara; John, not so much," he told THR. "But since Angelina was a newlywed, she didn't want anyone to say on air that she was in a showmance."
Through three episodes of Survivor: David vs. Goliath, there has been no mention of or allusion to any romance between Angelina and John; both castaways were married and engaged respectively at the time of production. John, the pro wrestler alternately known as "Johnny Mundo" and "The Mayor of Slamtown," married fellow wrestler Taya Valkyrie shortly after David vs. Goliath finished taping.
Jeremy, who was unanimously voted out of his tribe, claimed that Angelina "didn't want us to say anything [about the showmance] in testimonials, out of fear that it would make her look bad. After the reward challenge where we won fishing equipment, I made a joke about Angelina and John's showmance that got back to Angelina the day we went to the immunity challenge. That [put] Angelina on the warpath to get me out before anyone said anything about her being in a showmance. It's very difficult, because you don't get to see it on air, but I think that was the nail in [my] coffin."
Asked to elaborate on why he believed Angelina and John's dynamic went beyond the scope of the game, Jeremy claimed: "[It] wasn't a secret. If it rained, Angelina would take care of John's clothes and make sure they were dry, even before her own. If they went out to look for coconuts, they went out to look together. They were in a showmance."
Jeremy then referenced the scene in the second episode of David vs. Goliath in which Angelina, Kara and fellow ally Natalia Azoqa forged their partnership: "They said, 'Natalia has Alec,' because she was in a flirtation with Alec; it was more like Mr. and Mrs. Smith, not a showmance. Then [Angelina] said, 'You have Dan, and I have John.' She didn't say she had anybody else. She said, 'I have John.' It was a known thing. It was also known that she didn't want the world to know about it."
"In the scene where she's talking to Natalia and saying, 'We have to vote Jeremy out … I don't trust him anymore,' that 'anymore' is based on that joke," he continued. "She didn't trust that I wasn't going to keep the secret. She didn't like that I talked to John and said, 'If you're trying to keep this a secret, when you get over to the tribe swap, they're going to [find out], because you're always together.' Survivor doesn't have a lot of rules, but telling someone not to say something on camera? That's a rule. That's a bridge way too far."
Beyond his claims about Angelina, Jeremy also said his feud with Natalie was misconstrued: "Everything was pretty accurate, but what's not clear is why we were having the blowup. Natalie and Natalia from day one did not get along, because Natalie hated how Natalia wanted to build the shelter and she did not want to take direction from Natalie. When Natalie's upset with somebody, it grows, and it continues to grow and grow. By day three, [it escalated], which is when Natalie and I had that conversation. It wasn't that me and Natalie had a fight; I was trying to calm her down and make her self-aware that Natalia didn't care about her. But Natalie kept saying, 'You're taking her side, when you should be taking my side.' I was just trying to tell her it's not the reality."
In addition to his conversation with THR, Jeremy recited similar stories about Angelina's "showmance" in other exit interviews. For her part, in a statement she provided to THR, Angelina denied Jeremy's versions of events.
"My husband and I are aware of Jeremy’s comments," she said. "While we do not appreciate his blatant mischaracterization of my friendship and alliance with John, I am not surprised he feels compelled to attempt to revise the narrative. I think all of this really comes down to one fundamental Survivor truth: being the first eliminated member of your tribe by a unanimous, undisclosed blindside, must really sting, especially for a supposed 'Goliath.'"
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