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Interview With Lea Sarge Masters of Survivor: Vanuatu


by atarus

Hi Sarge! Thank you so much for taking the time to answer our questions! You were such fun to watch on the show, and congrats to you for standing up for what you believed in.

How hard was it for you to keep your drill sergeant persona under wraps while on the island?

It was my intent in the beginning to stay low on the Drill Sergeant side but I found it extremely hard not to get frustrated at the laziness among the group. I wanted certain things done and they kept questioning them constantly. I would have rather yelled more but I did seem to keep from it

What did you think when the chicken bone incident that the women pulled aired on TV?

I was appalled that they would act in that manner even though we were playing a game. I thought they had a little more character than that but I soon learned as I watched the show that they were women of very shallow character and it was beyond their control to act anything other than their true selves.

Do you think it’s possible to play Survivor with 100% honesty and integrity?

Yes it is but you have to cross your fingers and hope you are not double crossed. I feel if I was not betrayed by Julie then I would have gone all the way. That was my fault for not reassuring her that we were strong to the end and that she had every bit of a chance to win as any. My fault for assuming.

How do you think the game would have changed if you had voted out Julie or Twila instead of John K?

I would have been the next to go after the girls left. John K. did not care for me. He had moved out to get rid of someone that could see the laziness in him and he did not need anyone around to remind him of that.

There was an “age gap” on Lopevi, but Chris was barely two years older than John P and was the same age as Brady. Was it really young vs. old, or was it something else?

No it was not the old and young in respect to years. It was the old and young as to whom you hang with. The group that I went to first was on the beach making their little cliché from the moment we arrived and I tried to talk to them and they didn’t want to think of anything about groups and making alliances; they wanted to talk about women and T&A.

I asked them first and they disregarded it as foolishness and I went to the next group which happened to have a few older guys in it and they dubbed it the older group or the fat five. Which of course was funny to me as they were not fat and there was no one on the island more fit overall than I was. It was just their way of handling rejection from the team and their inevitable dismissal from the game.

How long did it take you to get “Sarge” as your nickname on the island? Did you ask to be called that?

It was about five hours and Bubba called me that when he found out that I was in the Army. It was his way of showing respect. No I did not ask, as this is an insult in the Army and I would never ask to be called that. It was allowed because this group had no idea what it meant and I saw the true meaning in their eyes as to what they were trying to say.

You and Rory had your differences on the island, and were eventually split up, but as soon as you merged you were buddies like nothing happened. What changed in the relationship between you two?

Nothing changed. I needed to ensure that he was with us and that I could count on his vote to go the way I wanted. I am a leader and know when to change my persona when I need something and that was not the time to show my ass when I need to find out some info. He was, is, and will always be a sore in my side. I will not say that I agreed with him and he is back in his world and I am back in mine

That was a neat little test you pulled off in your Jury questions. Do you think Chris was on to you? Could he have said anything to get you to vote for Twila instead?

Yes if he had gone off the deep end I would have maybe changed my mind. Twila was the reason I changed my vote. When she refused to apologize to Eliza for a million dollars I was shocked and stumped at that point. All she had to do was say the simple words “I’m sorry” and she would have made that little girl’s day but she would not. I knew that she had issues and did not deserve to win the money.

How was Survivor different than any military training or excursions you’ve been a part of?

# 1 we have water and food at most of them or I have to hunt for it but not for everybody. I am trained to find and hunt for food. I usually have the means to make water and fire and that was the toughest not having water at my disposal. Military training is different mainly because of the people that I am working with and that I can trust them wholeheartedly.

Do you think that your experience on the show and the fan reaction afterwards has prepared you for civilian life?

Yes it has shown me that there is a war in the civilian world and that people will do anything to get what they want. I am ready for that challenge and I have 17 other people to thank for that. It is worth far more than a million dollars as to what they have given me and taught me.

Would you be willing to take part in Survivor again?

Yes I would like to play the game as an evil SOB this time taking no prisoners. I would like to be out of the Army next time so I can not portray to the American people that the American soldier is cunning and sly and would do anything for money. I want America to see the Soldier as the greatest person to have ever lived and they are defending this great country and giving their lives because they actually believe that this is a great place to live and raise their families

Thanks again for your time Sarge. We wish you the best of luck for the future!


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