Exclusive Interview: Dave Cruser of 'Survivor: China'
Exclusive Interview: Dave Cruser of 'Survivor: China'
Early on in Survivor: China, it seemed the Zhan Hu tribe was in trouble.  They weren't a group that got along with each other the way their opponents, the Fei Long tribe, did.  At the first tribal council, they voted out one of their hardest workers, Chicken, for being too stuborrn.  At that tribal council, Jeff asked somebody to step up as a leader and both Dave and Peih-Gee agreed to rise to the challenge.  Unfortunately, Dave butted heads with many of his tribe members, landing him in the hot seat at the next tribal council.  He was saved when Ashley was sent home, for not contributing enough to her team and butting heads with the tribe leader.  Zhan Hu went on to win the next immunity challenge but wasn't so lucky this past week.  The tribe had finally had enough of Dave and, despite his tremendous contributions around camp, sent him packing.  Today, Dave spoke to BuddyTV about secret romances, alliances, and his time on Survivor: China.

Below, you will find the complete transcript and mp3 of the interview.

Hey everybody, this is Gina from BuddyTV and I'm talking to Dave, the latest contestant eliminated from Survivor: China.  Hey Dave, how are you?

I'm not bad.  How are you?

I'm good, thanks for doing the interview, I appreciate it.

Hey, no thing.

So, can you tell me if you were a fan of Survivor and how long you’ve been trying to get on the show?

I’ve been a huge fan of Survivor since the first episode. I haven’t seen much of it due to my travels around the world. The part which is the biggest draw for me is the outdoors aspect. Trying to get on the show was a random event this season. I got the opportunity and I seized it. It wasn’t actually a focused intention, it was more of a serendipitous crossings of paths.

Now have you always been an outdoorsy kind of person?


So it didn’t bother you to being outside, sleeping out there, and roughing it?

I love it!

You were a real workhorse out there. Didn’t you get hungry and tired?

I got thirsty and of course, I got tired because I pulled the weight of an entire tribe. That’s just part of the outdoors.

How long did it take being thirsty and hungry... how long did it take before that set in?

I only really noticed the effects of my efforts where I almost passed out during the battering ram challenge. Where I was careening down the hill seeing spots.

What is up with Zhan Hu voting out all their hardest workers? Let’s not count Ashley, but voting you and Chicken out, what are they thinking?

What were they thinking? I can only be responsible for myself. I am Generation X, I am not Generation Y, and I have no clue where their heads are lodged.

Do you like you might have fared better on Fei Long?

Absolutely! I was so happy to be kidnapped because it proved to me that I wasn’t a dictator and my efforts were appreciated by some people.

Up to the point were you were kidnapped, did you know that the information the kidnapped person was getting was a clue for the idol?

No, not at all.

So nobody had any idea what it was or what it meant?

From my tribe, Jaime kept it such a secret.  She also made a secret alliance with Erik and the two of them knew, no one else knew. So when I got the information, about the immunity idol, I had to go two directions. I had to either say, “It’s been given as clue all along,” which it was. I  didn’t know that.  Or I might have been the first person to receive a clue or understand it was a hidden immunity idol. Playing it safe, I thought that perhaps I was the first and not the third person.

What made you choose Todd to give the clue to?

Todd is a great player and a wonderful person. And out of the entire Fei Long tribe, I could’ve walked away very easy and dropped it off on Aaron. I thought that Todd would be an unique and interesting choice, given his attitude, his stature, and his enthusiasm for the game.

Now when Leslie got kidnapped, she said she noticed a little romance between Amanda and Aaron. Can you confirm or deny anything you’ve seen?

I think that those facts are highly embellished.

Really? I thought we were getting some inside information.

I didn’t see any kind of romance at all. You can see it happening with Jaime and Erik, they’re still going out with each other.

I'll take any Survivor romance!

I am pretty sure Jaime and Erik are an item as we speak.

Now everyone talks about how James is one of the strongest players in the game. Is there someone else that you think we might wanna be looking at throughout the season?

Well you know having the title of Hercules can’t be beat. As far as any other strong players, no one even comes close.

Now when you look at Jean Robert's strategy this season, to be disliked then liked, what do you think about that?

I believe his strategy highly risky, but hey, worked better than my strategy.

Is there anything about your strategy or they way you played the game that you might have changed?

The only thing I would’ve changed is mentioning the hidden immunity idol the day I got voted out. Beyond that, my tribe and my camp were such extreme circumstances that what you don’t see is how I am changing and bending everyday to placate the rest of my tribe. You see very little of me laughing, you see very little of me talking, and conferring with my tribe. I spoke to all of them at length, perhaps to a negative point, saying, "If there's anything that you want done differently, tell me. If there's something different or anything you have to contribute, pipe  up, all suggestions are welcome." Unfortunately, there weren’t a lot of suggestions or fully cooked ideas. So I ran with my experience and what I knew would work.

Fei Long seems like a lot more cohesive tribe, can Zhan Hu make it past the merge and make it far in this game as a group?


That's it, just no.


Alright, Dave, I just wanted to thank you for your time, we'll look forward to seeing you on the finale of Survivor: China.  Thanks!

Excellent, thank you very much.

- Gina Scarpa, BuddyTV Staff Writer
(Image courtesy of CBS)