Simon Mee became the unlikely underdog of this season of Survivor Australia.
Despite finding himself consistently on the bottom, with no hard alliances to fall back on and no real plan beyond surviving another tribal council, he lasted an impressive 42 days in Samoa.
Speaking to TV Week the morning after his on-screen elimination, Simon said that whilst it had been ”exhausting” to watch his Survivor journey play out, it was ”liberating” to finally be eliminated from the game on screen.
”It was really hard to need to watch my character at the start, I wasn’t humanised at all,” Simon says.
An example Simon says, is his sportsmanship and camaraderie shown during pre-merge challenges.
”In so many of those early challenges I was cheering and screaming our tribe on when I was on the bench and being supportive, but they didn’t show that, it was always just George.
”It was really hard for me. I was always trying to be uplifting and really inclusive of everyone and trying to always have a good time.”
So, what about his gameplay? Given how many explosive moments Simon has been involved in this season – let’s not forget THAT tribal council or the ”cookie idol” – does he have any regrets?
”No, but I’m definitely surprised at how long I hung around for. I went out there to leave my mark on this game in one way or another. And I certainly didn’t expect what came from my game to happen, but you know it is what it is,” Simon tells us.
”And once I made my bed, I had to live with the consequences of my actions. And you end up with a whole new set of cards in your hands.
”I’m pretty proud of what I managed to achieve given the limited resources I had at the time, especially after I burned trust after the cookie idol incident.”
Speaking of the fake idol which caused so much damage to Simon’s game, we had to ask if it was as obvious to him at the time of finding it, as it was to the audience watching from home that it was not the idol of his dreams.
”I did have my questions at the start but I found it in the reward and it had the official green emblem on it…..but it not coming with a note was a bit of a red flag,” Simon admits.
If the odds had been in Simon’s favour for at least one more tribal council, he also told us that he had no real plan about progressing to the final two.
”I was very much going day to day, I didn’t have the resources to be able to make a long-term strategy happen,” Simon says.
”So it was just self-preservation and really doubling down on trying to wake these pawns up [Liz, Gerry and Matt] to see if I can get someone to move and realise that the game has been dictated to them by George. And myself, and everyone sitting on the jury sees that.
”It’s going to be really hard to award someone to win if they don’t take the game into their own hands and do something about it.”
Given there is a very real possibility that George will make it to the final two, the question of the hour for Simon is whether or not there will be any hard feelings between the pair as Simon deliberates on who to award his vote to for the title of sole Survivor and half a million dollars.
”What I’m looking for someone’s game who can stand on their own two feet. It’s no doubt that George has played the most strategic game. We [the jury] all know exactly what he’s done because he’s been the heart and soul of every single vote.
”But jury management is also a really important thing. So, him making all those snarky remarks, as well, like, is that really needed? Is that the best thing for your game right now? This is a half million-dollar decision….”
So, with two seasons of Survivor under his belt, and a legacy that is sure to go down in the history books, what is Simon up to next?
For starters, he’s launched his own unofficial Survivor merch line – Snuff’d Apparel.
”I love this game so much. And it’s been [Snuff’d] a really cool thing to be able to bring to the community.
”And I think it looks at the autonomy that kind of encapsulates my game. It’s like, you’re standing up for what’s right and never giving up. And just like with all odds are against you just go down swinging.”
Question is, will Simon return for a round three?
In short, no.
”I just need a breather for now.”