Interview: Lindsey Cascaddan talks 'Survivor: Worlds Apart'
It's likely that Lindsey Cascaddan's "Survivor: Worlds Apart" run will be remembered for her disagreements with the men in her Blue Collar tribe, escalating frustrations that had her targeting first buffoonish Dan, then slave-driving Mike and finally boorish Rodney in three consecutive episodes.
After interviewing the 24-year-old Florida hairdresser, I'm disappointed with didn't get to see more. Lindsey's read on her male tribemates is perceptive and nuanced in a way that Lindsey was never really given the chance to be on "Survivor."
Instead, Lindsey was constantly on the defensive, fighting with the guys while simultaneously expressing great Blue Collar pride.
And in her exit interview, even while lamenting the sexism she fought at the Blue Collar camp, Lindsey thinks there was a valuable lesson that she was able to convey through her experience, even if she wasn't able to stick around for very long.
Click for the full Q&A and see if that lesson comes through...
HitFix: Going back to that final Tribal Council. How confident were you going in that the plan you thought you were a part of involving Rodney going home was actually gonna happen?
Lindsey Cascaddan: You know I was more confident in the fact that I thought our tribe wanted to play this game with a certain type of person, maybe not necessarily me but definitely not Rodney. So although I would not call it a blindside I thought that we were on the same page as far as just wanting to get him out so that we could have a little bit more unity in our tribe. I’m not sure "confident" is the word but I saw that going a little bit differently. When I saw the three-way split, though, I kind of knew what was going on.
HitFix: What was your reaction and did any part of you at least kind of hope that Sierra might end up actually being the real target or did you know it had to be you at that point?
Lindsey Cascaddan: Sierra really had no reason to be the target and also I think at that point in the game I was close enough with Sierra, which is why they tell you not to get too close to people, that I would have never hoped her out. Obviously I also hoped that it wasn’t me but I knew, knew, knew a hundred percent that it was either Rodney or myself. I knew that Sierra was only on the chopping block because my tribe thought that I had the Idol. But I’ll tell you where the hope came from: The hope was there because I thought maybe Kelly and Mike were smart enough to possibly flush the Idol, then obviously not flush the Idol because it wasn’t there, and then still go with the Rodney vote which didn’t happen. And I knew kind of seeing that, I knew that I was definitely the one on the chopping block but you always hold out hope. I mean no Survivor goes into any Tribal, not even the last five minutes, saying, "Okay, I’m done." I wasn’t ready to roll over.
HitFix: When you look back at the people who decided to go against you who you thought were in your camp who do you blame? Or who do you feel most betrayed by I guess?
Lindsey Cascaddan: Definitely Kelly for sure, but also Mike. I mean Kelly and Mike were alliances of Sierra and I and I think that Mike got a little bit emotional about our fight engaged prior to us going to Tribal. And acting emotional is really easy to do when you’re starving and you're exhausted. So I was most betrayed by Kelly, but I was also surprised by Mike. I mean he was raised by women. This is a guy that’s, for the most part, a gentleman. And to let him see Rodney’s true colors and then watch him actually vote for me? It was a surprise.
HitFix: I want to talk about your relationship with the individual guys in your tribe because you had three consecutive episodes in which in each episode you announced you were looking forward to voting out a different one of the guys which I don’t know if I’ve ever seen before. [Lindsey laughs.] I mean one week it was, "I've gotta get Dan out." Next week, "I've gotta get Mike out." Next week, "I've gotta get Rodney out." When you look back do you make a very clear distinction between the frustrations you had with Dan and Mike versus the maybe more real dislike you had for Rodney?
Lindsey Cascaddan: Sure. You know when you first get on the island you’re running on adrenalin. You’re not starving. You’re not sunburnt. You’re not exhausted. And so your frustrations with people like Dan are just everyday frustrations. Here’s the other thing about people like Dan on "Survivor," is that when he’s not starving and not exhausted and not sunburnt or sick, he has a much more annoying personality. But as he became exhausted he just couldn’t keep up with his shenanigans anymore and so he became much more tolerable. I think that you would have seen me frustrated with him on Day 11 had he been the same Dan he was on Day 1, 2 and 3, but as exhaustion sets in he just becomes more docile, more complacent, more lazy, more quiet. And I can put up with those things.
The Mike frustration was mostly just because you take a guy like Mike, who works really very hard and doesn’t necessarily have to work closely with other people and all he knows how to do is work. He doesn’t have a social life. He works and lives on oil rigs for 90 percent of his life. And he has no social game because he has no social life. So he didn’t know how to get along with people because he doesn’t necessarily have to do that in his everyday life. So that was an annoyance kind of in the middle of my game, because when you’re working really, really hard you do want to hear like, "Okay guys, let’s take a 10-minute break" or "Okay, we’re exhausted or okay, things are okay. We have fire, we have water, we have this, we have that. We don’t need to work 100 percent of the time." And I think that what you’ll see is that when I was exhausted and tired and frustrated with people, especially Dan and Mike, so were other people. And so we had these kind of influxes in our camp, especially with our guys who, you know, I would say with our girls we had one bold personality and that was me. I pissed people off. I rubbed people the wrong way. I mean the guys and the girls, minus Sierra, went from loving or hating me really, really quickly. And sometimes within 10 minutes we were fighting and then hugging and then, you know, whatever. These guy, all three of them, have these very, very bold personalities and so that’s a lot to handle.
HitFix: So the confessionals in which you announced that you were looking forward to voting out Dan and Mike, were those just heat of the moment things or do you think that if those episodes had ended with Tribal Council you actually would have tried to push forward with that?
Lindsey Cascaddan: I definitely would have pushed forward had we been at Tribal Council. You know the interesting part about the Blue Collar tribe at this point in the season is that sometimes when the tribe goes on a winning streak really early on, you don’t know who your alliances are. And also you build so many relationships with so many different people so quickly that nothing is tested by Tribal Council. There is no doubt in my mind that had we lost one of the first challenges and gone to Tribal those first couple of nights, Dan would have been gone. Everyone was at their wit's end with Dan. And then the same thing with Mike. Rodney was done. Sierra was done. You know everyone was kind of over his attitude and then, as you see us start to struggle with challenges and finally lose and then we go to last night’s Tribal, it was really pretty split between Rodney or I until people just had to make a decision. And you kind of see that in our split vote. Like, "Okay, maybe let’s get an Idol out" and then "Okay, let’s decide who we’re going to send home." And it ended up being me.
HitFix: Now Rodney went with chicken parm and tuna for the description of how well you guys meshed. What comparison might you want to be making this morning for how you guys interacted out there?
Lindsey Cascaddan: You know, for the most part Rodney and I just tried not to interact I don’t know that I would call us chicken parm and tuna. I’m just not even sure that that even makes sense. But I think maybe just somewhere logistic things to say about people will make sense of is we’re just kind of oil and water. We don’t mix and also, in everyday life it would never be in a place or a position of life that I would have to mix with someone like Rodney. So the only place that you’re gonna find me in close quarters with a human being like that is on "Survivor."
HitFix: There was the really kind of ugly thing last night where he said when you weren’t there that he’d grab you by the hair and spank you like a bad baby if this was back in the city. Was he saying things like that to your face as well or were you surprised to hear that in last night’s episode?
Lindsey Cascaddan: I wasn’t surprised to hear it and honestly probably wouldn’t be surprised to hear anything come out of Rodney’s mouth because he’s just such a wild card. But, at the same time, I know that Rodney would never say that to my face. Rodney was constantly apologizing to me, constantly sucking up to me. At one point Rodney and I, early on in the game, were working together. But I also know that he was kind of the type of man to not want to see a strong woman and he doesn’t want to be controlled by a woman. He doesn’t want to see camp controlled by a woman and that in my life just doesn’t exist. All the men in my life are empowered by strong women and continue to empower women. And I just think that he’s a man who looks at a woman and is constantly in a state of possibly fear that she might run his camp. That’s what you get. You get a guy who wants to go spank her and tries put her down and, in this case, Rodney was working with two men that had like values for women so he won.
HitFix: Okay, I want to talk about that, because at the Tribal Council last night Mike said he’d slit his throat if he’d been on – I don’t remember if it was the No Collar or the White Collar tribe. Are you that defiant? Do you think you would have been able to maybe do better if you’d been on the No Collar tribe?
Lindsey Cascaddan: Oh my God, no. I would never ever ask to be on another tribe. I’d take my tribe any day, every day, today, yesterday, tomorrow. I absolutely would not want to work with the other tribes.
HitFix: Well but okay let’s say if your choice is not necessarily between White Collar, No Collar and Blue Collar but let’s say your choice is between a generally mixed "Survivor" tribe in which you might have been with guys who weren’t threatened by a strong woman. I mean would you have preferred to be in a generally mixed "Survivor" circumstance in which you could have just been yourself, I guess?
Lindsey Cascaddan: You know that’s easy to say. I think it’s more important for me thing, especially as a mom -- I do have a daughter -- yeaah I mean I guess if I was just going for the prize being with men who aren’t threatened by women would have been way better for me, but at the end of the day it’s just a really, really important thing for women and for men to see in America which is at the end of the day I did go home because I threatened the men on our tribe and I hurt egos. And in America, if you’re a strong woman, people want to vote you out. They don’t want to empower you. And I am an alpha personality. I’m a girl who likes control. I like things done my way. I think my way works and if it weren’t for my strength and my control in our tribe, we literally would not have had a shelter. Sierra and I put that shelter up by hand on our own from day one. So I think it would be really easy to sit here and say, "Yeah, I wish I had other guys on our tribe," but I also think that there is an underlying message there that may be worth more than a million dollars for some people. I want my daughter to see that you can be a strong woman and if that means that you threaten the men that you’re around, then maybe you should put yourself around different men.