‘Survivor: Blood vs. Water’ interview: Laura Boneham on regrets, proving a point, and Rupert (exclusive)

Meet Laura -It’s interesting in some ways to be speaking to two players in our “Survivor:  Blood vs. Water” exit interviews today, the episode after the merge, who were actually both involved in a twist that could have had them on Redemption Island from day 1. While John Cody was someone who decided to stay on his tribe rather than save his wife Candice, Laura Bonehman was saved by her husband Rupert. It was a weird turn of events that they both went out of the game at around the same time.

While Laura clearly made the wrong move out there in the game in trying to tell Vytas he was going home, there were some things about her that surprised us. She was great in most of the challenges, and also had a good shot at making the merge despite starting off looking someone destined to leave the game right away. While she talked a little about the game, she also explained in our exit interview today about how she and her husband have been in a strange place in the “Survivor” community for years thanks mostly to the fact that Rupert was given $1 million by America many years ago (after the “All-Stars” finale).

CarterMatt – One thing I have been curious to ask you is prior to entering this game, how did the ‘Survivor’ family treat you? You had been on the show a few times, and you were married to this guy who became this enormous star almost overnight. Do you feel like you were embraced like Rupert was?

Laura Boneham – I don’t know if they embraced him a lot, because he won that million dollars at America’s Tribal Council. There were strong feelings about that. So I would say that ’embrace’ is probably the wrong word.

But I think a lot of fans were good to us over the years and are good to us. I don’t know if a lot of other players have embraced us a whole lot; I was the first one voted off the show! I think they were out to get Rupert, and that’s why they did that. But, it has been a great experience to be the wife of someone who is embraced as a hero in the public eye, because I’d hate to be Russell Hantz and walk the streets and have people hate you. To be Rupert’s wife, it is good.

You did make it almost to the merge this season, so what was it like for you watching yourself back? Are you the sort of person who regrets or really wishes you had done this or that differently, or are you willing to just say that it is what it is and move on?

I stayed true to myself and I am the person I am. I felt good about how I played; yeah, there were some things about game that I would have changed, but I am a huge competitor and I am who I am.

One thing that I think did surprise a lot of people is that you were really strong in a ton of the challenges this season, so was there ever really a moment where you wanted to look back at the people who originally voted you out and say ‘this is what you get for getting rid of me’?

Oh, I did say that! They didn’t show it, but right the very first day I cussed everyone else and said that they made the biggest f-ing mistake, and ‘how could you vote out the strongest woman in the game?’. I was a competitor swimmer and I’ve done triathlons; I am a 45-year old woman, but I’m in pretty good shape. I felt really good about the challenges.

Had you made it back into the game at the merge, what sort of gameplan would you have had? Who would you have worked with?

Initially, they didn’t show this, but I thought I was I was in alliance with the guys on the Galang Tribe and Tina. If I had gotten back to the game after the girls voted me out, I would have definitely gone back to Gervase and Aras and Tyson, for sure.

If you do want to check out some more “Survivor” scoop, including our exit interview with John Cody, just be sure to click here.

Photo: CBS

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