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Survivor

Andrew reveals his one massive regret on Australian Survivor: “I’ll live with it until the day I die”

Plus, why he was this season's 'dark horse'.

By Maddison Leach
Survival expert Andrew seemed like a shoo-in when he joined the Brains tribe on Australian Survivor.
But when TV WEEK asked him if his survival expertise was what got him so far on the show, his response surprised everyone.
"Definitely not!" he laughs over the phone after being eliminated.
"Survival and Survivor are two completely different things. To be completely honest, there weren't many things I could parallel [Survivor] against."
Andrew went into the competition having never watched Survivor. (Ten)
Instead of relying on his survival knowledge and strength, Andrew got ahead by playing a subtle social game.
"I was definitely playing in the shadows and was a little bit of a dark horse there," he explains.
Despite having never watched the show, Andrew made it to the final seven but didn't expect to make it that far.
"I've never watched an episode of the show and I actually thought at the first tribal council, day one, I thought I was going home," Andrew confesses.
Going up against superfans like Hayley and Simon, you'd think Andrew would be at a disadvantage, but he says not knowing what to expect often worked in his favour.
"Having come in a bit blindfolded, I think it worked to my advantage because I didn't have any preconceived ideas," he adds.
"It didn't put a target on my back."
He won a few challenges and had a level of physical endurance some of the other castaways simply couldn't match as the show went on. But Andrew admits he made one huge mistake in his final immunity challenge – one that may have cost him everything.
Over an hour into an endurance challenge where castaways had to hold themselves above water, host Jonathan LaPaglia revealed they had to do the rest of the challenge holding on with just one hand.
That's when Andrew made his mistake.
When told to drop down to one hand, Andrew made a big mistake. (Ten)
"Looking back on it I keep thinking why on earth did I use my left hand, not my right hand," he tells TV WEEK.
"I think I'll probably live with that until the day I die. I should've used my dominant arm on that!"
Though he was "playing in the shadows" for the first few weeks in the brutal Aussie outback, as numbers dwindled other castaways began to see what a threat Andrew was.
"As the challenges started getting harder the other contestants knew I was very mentally strong as well," he says.
"I was going to be a massive threat."
That's why George hatched a cunning plan to get Andrew eliminated by turning an unsuspecting Wai against him.
The political operative convinced Wai that Andrew was telling other contenders to vote her off – and his deception paid off.
Though George's lies were what got Andrew booted, the survival expert says he can't help but be impressed George's strategy of manipulation.
"He was just fantastic with his words," Andrew tells TV WEEK, adding that George and Cara are ones to watch as the finale approaches.
"It was literally the first week, I was watching their relationship blossom and I knew they were going to be very strong contenders all the way to the end."
While he won't give away who he votes for at the final tribal council, Andrew says his decision all came down to his survival instincts.
"Who do I think was a well-rounded person, who would I rely on, who would I have next to me?" Andrew says of his thought process.
Andrew was sent home in episode 19 after George's sly plan unfolded. (Ten)
"That comes down to the integrity of someone's character […] and the way they look at life as well."
But the Survivor finale isn't the only big TV appearance in Andrew's future.
Not only does he have a documentary series streaming through Netflix in the UK and Ireland, he'd also be up to star on some more Aussie TV franchises.
"All the doors are open – I'd be very interested to do anything on Australian TV, including Love Island or The Bachelor!" he laughs.
It would be a big shift away from his usual on-camera antics, especially in his docuseries Born To Be Wild.
The series shows Andrew tackling some of the most unreal situations in locations around the world, and while it isn't streaming in Australia yet, we hope it will be available Down Under soon.
Will this be the face of our next Bachelor? (Ten)
"It's about my connection to nature and bringing people on this journey and showing them these wild places in such a raw format," Andrew says of the series.
"One little slip up and that's the difference between life and death."
And what can people can expect from the show?
"Everything from venturing through the amazon, to crossing Arnhem land, to being chased by elephants and lions in Africa."
Andrew calls it a cross between Indiana Jones, Jackass and David Attenborough – and yeah, that definitely sounds like something Aussie audiences would watch.
Though he does have one warning for anyone who watches it: "Don't try this at home."

Survivors ready? Get more info on the Brains V Brawn season here

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