'Survivor' hero James 'JT' Thomas: Parvati has Russell 'in the palm of her hand'
He tells Zap2it that he knew it would be hard to win, what he thinks about Russell and Parvati and that it was a little painful to watch himself.
What made you want to do "Survivor" again?
I definitely enjoyed the experience the first go 'round, so I knew I wanted to do it again. This time I knew it was gonna be tough, so I actually did have a second thought for just a second, but I knew I would do it. I love the competition, I love the game. I've been a fan forever. It's just the perfect game for me, I really like it.
Did you actually think, as a former winner of the game, you stood a chance to win this one? Or was that just too much to overcome?
I knew that there were other winners coming, but I did know that anything, any reason you can give somebody to vote you out puts a big target on you. I went out there thinking there was a chance I'd be the first one voted off because I won. I was definitely willing to go against the odds, but I did know, I did realize that I may very well be the first one gone. I thought about that pretty regularly.
Now that you've seen last season, when Russell first played "Survivor," and seen this season so far, what do you think of Russell?
He's definitely an aggressive player and he does really well, he got to the end of Season 19. I feel like at some point he should have realized that he's not gonna win. Having seen his season would've definitely helped in our season, but I let my guard down and I was fooled and my hat is off to him for playing me in the game. As far as someone that I'd associate with, he's definitely not at the top of the list.
And what about Parvati?
I don't think any credit is taken away from Parvati because Russell is grabbing a lot of attention. We'd seen last night that she pulled the wool over Russell's eyes, he was running to her, giving her Idols every time he got one. She has Russell in the palm of her hand. I wasn't surprised to see Parvati running the show. We had Russell believing we were going to vote for Sandra, that's what he thought. Parvati is the one who really stuck her neck out when she saved Jerri.
Was the editing just painful to watch, you doing and saying one thing about Russell and then having it be the exact opposite behind your back?
Yeah, it's hard. It's very hard to watch. But it wasn't near as bad as it looks. Almost everyone on my own tribe was excited about [giving Russell the Idol], the letter was hilarious. It just backfired on us, but it was a playing-with-fire kinda deal. It would either get us to the end of the game if it works out or it'll get me sent home if it doesn't. I was willing to live with that.
Once you were voted off, who were you rooting for?
Immediately when I was voted off I was hoping somehow Colby or Rupert could stay in there long enough to make a fight of it. I guess just them, they were the closest friends I had out there.
We didn't really have any connection. I didn't trust any of the girls who were there at all, they never talked to us, we never talked to them. Sandra talked to Rupert that one time, but none of us believed Rupert because of all the stories he'd told us prior. That backfired on us.
Any messages for your fans?
Definitely. I would hope my fans realize that I was trying to make a move and not have a move made upon me. Just trying to win the game, that's what I went there to do.
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Photo credit: CBS