Troy “Troyzan” Robertson is a guy who very much wanted to come back and play Survivor again after his first time out on Survivor: One World, and he was able to make that dream a reality on this Game Changers season. It’s also easy to say he did a good job. He didn’t make the same mistakes that he did the first time, and he built solid relationships.
However, in the end the perception of him was that he was a follower more so than a leader (even if that wasn’t entirely accurate), and this ended up doing him in at the final Tribal Council. This was one of the conversation subjects brought up in our interview with him early this morning.
CarterMatt – I know how badly you wanted to get another chance to play this game, so what was it like being out there and managing to get so far? Are you happy looking back?
Troyzan – After being out there [at the end], I pretty much said ‘oh, these guys have their minds made up. I’m not stupid.’ I just wanted to let people know who I am, and how much I appreciated being able to play with them. That was just me being honest, I wasn’t trying to play a game. I think I talked to all of them — you didn’t see all of it — and I told them all stories about stuff that we’d done on the island together. Funny stuff that we’d done every morning or every afternoon.
It’s always been a great adventure for me. I’ve always said that I would play just to get to the end and be the last guy standing and be Sole Survivor, even without the money. There’s just something in me. I got to play the whole game, and I just wanted them to know I appreciated them. Without them, I wouldn’t have had the adventure that I had. I needed everybody, Brad and Sarah included.
But still, does it say something about the person you are that you didn’t get upset? There are so many people on this show who, in your position, would’ve gotten whiny or defensive last night.
Like I said, I have a pretty good perception of people. That’s the reason why I got to 39 days — I know people, and know what they like and don’t like. It’s a pretty social thing. I knew that the jury had their mind made up, and I knew almost who was going to vote for Brad and who was going to vote for Sarah. Why was I going to sit there and act otherwise? Zeke had made up his mind, and the same with Ozzy. I wanted people to know how I felt.
Also, I knew that America at some point was going to watch this and it made me happy to let people know who I really am deep down inside. Probably the only person out there who really knew that was Brad. I wanted to let everyone else know that.
This was such an interesting season for you because the narrative and the edit was so different than your first time, where you ended up on your own and were very aggressive. Did you play a very different game this time, or was it just edited differently?
A little bit of both. I did go in saying that I really couldn’t play the game the same way. I didn’t feel like I had a big target on my back like a Tony, but I didn’t want a target on my back ever. I didn’t want to be a threat, and I needed to watch myself and make a conscious effort every single day. I had to watch every word that came out of my mouth to make sure they knew that I was just the ‘old guy’ there to have fun, and that I didn’t know how to strategize. That wasn’t the truth. The same goes for stepping out [of challenges].
I never wanted to look like a threat, and it worked! Nobody ever wrote my name down. I always made sure there were bigger threats in front of me, and it helped that Brad was perceived as a big threat. They were always going to target him before me.
I kind of made a 180 this season. Obviously there was a lot that you didn’t see, and that’s a little frustrating because you don’t get to day 39 just sitting there and eating coconuts (laughs). I am doing things for every the days [between Tribal Councils], but those things aren’t being seen in [a 45-minute show].
In the end, I’m still happy. The way that I play the game, [many years ago] that style of play would have won. I’m an old-school guy with an old-school heart.
What was it like for you getting the chance to play the game with someone like Brad, who you were able to be loyal to until the end?
I had met Brad outside the game because of Monica, so going in I felt like I knew somebody and that was great. I did wonder ‘how close are we,’ and it wasn’t until we got together [later in the game] when I realized that this guy really did have my back. It’s pretty rare in Survivor that you can something like ‘I can trust this guy 100%.’ That doesn’t often happen. With Brad, sometimes I didn’t even have a conversation. He could wink at me or I could wink at him or have a handshake, and we would be good. That happened almost right off the bat when we started working together.
It took a while, but I never thought Brad would backstab me, and I was never going to backstab him. I felt like I was playing with my brother. Maybe that got a little difficult because I felt like I was playing ‘Blood vs. Water’ (laughs), in the end I have a brother for life now. If I only got that going out of the game, I’ll take that.
Further Survivor finale coverage
If you do want to get some other CarterMatt exit interviews from the finale, plus some reviews and a look ahead to next season, head over to the link here. (Photo: CBS.)