Axed Survivor contestant breaks down because 'everybody hated me'
Shannon Quinn's Survivor dreams were dashed in a week of tears, fights and her eventual exile.
The Auckland zookeeper calls that time her "breakdown".
"Basically, at that point, I had everybody hating on me and it just started to get to me. I just started breaking," Quinn said on Monday, a day after the nation saw her buff go up in flames.
Her former tribe mates labelled Quinn the show's villain. They called her untrustworthy and said she had backstabbed everyone. In heated speeches, her former allies told Quinn they couldn't wait to finally oust her.
But Quinn said she had no regrets, except for the breakdown.
"I was comfortable to make my big moves and betray and lie when I needed to, but I wasn't really prepared for the fallout."
Quinn said she continued on with her strategy until it became too much. To win Survivor you must have a mean streak, she said.
It all became too much when Quinn's mind was plagued with negative thoughts about herself, she said.
"When I ended the show, I felt almost brainwashed by what everybody in the show was saying about me. So I started believing that, 'oh man, I'm a nasty, awful person, I've betrayed all these people'," she said.
It took such a huge toll because during that time, Quinn said Survivor was life. They had no contact with the outside world, "it's really bizarre", she said, "everything there, that is your life".
Survivor New Zealand was filmed about nine months ago in Nicaragua. Contestants that made it to the merge stayed on as part of the jury, which meant they got "a sweet holiday" according to Quinn.
Quinn was ready to make it to the end, she had even prepared a speech to explain why she acted how she did. "I wasn't going to apologise for anything," she said.
The speech wasn't required though, thanks to the axed contestants' holiday together.
During their South American downtime, Quinn had time to talk with the other contestants as they left the show. When they finally got out, she said everyone's opinions mellowed. "It was just a game."
The final week of Survivor New Zealand airs Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday nights on TVNZ 2.