Exclusive Interview: Frosti Zernow of 'Survivor: China'
Exclusive Interview: Frosti Zernow of 'Survivor: China'
On the last episode of Survivor: China, Frosti Zernow became the 9th person voted out of the game and the 3rd member of the jury.  An original member of the Zhan Hu tribe, he had a very quiet presence in the game early on.  When the tribes were switched up, and he was sent over to Fei Long, he stepped up his game and secured a place on the tribe.  Over time, he grew close to fellow tribe member Courtney Yates and the two developed a little bit of a Survivor showmance.  Ultimately, that bond combined with being a physical threat and not being part of a strong alliance cost him the game.  This week, he talked to BuddyTV and let us know the status of his relationship with Courtney and what someone needs to do in order for him to give them a million dollar vote.

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


Hey everybody, this is Gina from BuddyTV and today, I’m talking to Frosti from Survivor: China. Were you a fan of past seasons of Survivor and was being on the show something that you always wanted to do?


Yeah. I specifically remember hanging out in my living room with my dad watching that show. I started really thinking like: ‘Oh, I’d totally be good at that.’ I mean you look at someone like Ozzy from Cook Islands and be like: ‘Oh, that could be me. I could be that guy getting coconuts out of a tree.’ That show was made for me.  Obviously, I’m only 20 so I never thought I’d get a chance to be on Survivor. It’s the original reality game show. It’s the ultimate challenge and being allowed to be on it was just an amazing opportunity and I’m really thankful that they tweaked those rules just a little bit to slide me in.

Did you do anything in preparation before you left for the show?


Well, I didn’t have a lot of notice before I left. Basically my theory training routine is pretty great, physical training for the show. Obviously, I tried to buff up on Survivor facts. More than anything, I didn’t want to watch too many seasons before I came because I didn’t want to play the game exactly like everyone else had already played it. I basically did like minimal training and I tried to eat more. Everybody wants to gain weight, but it’s hard when you’re working out all the time. I did about a million push ups a day.


That’s about a million more than I can do. (Laughter)

I'm totally kidding.


Now before you went to the merge, you had sort of a quiet presence in the game. Can you talk a little bit about life at the Zhan Hu camp?


Well, life at the Zhan Hu camp was, well, like after we got rid of people like Dave, it was pretty relaxed. We’re all pretty good friends so we spent a lot of time hanging out, talking. Once we didn’t have to work on the shelter anymore, we had a roof, we had blankets. There was a lot of hanging out and we'd go swimming. I spent a whole lot of my time in the water diving for like, clams and muscles. It was a really good experience there. We played limbo and stuff like that. It was a lot of fun, as opposed to the Fei Long camp where it seemed to be like, really conflicting personalities. I spent a lot of time just basically bonding with the people over there. Yeah we talked strategy, but a lot of it was just hanging out.

Well a lot of BuddyTV readers have been waiting to hear from you, to go back to that challenge with you and Sherea and the eye contact with Peih-Gee and Jaime. What happened? Were you really switching over to Fei Long or did you still have allegiance to Zhan Hu?

Well, one thing that nobody really saw was is that there’s definitely a lot of pressure from Todd and Amanda. The first thing I did when I got to Fei Long was talk to Todd. I felt like I could connect with somebody like him, he was a small guy like me. He really seemed to be in control of what was going on over there. So, I went and talked to him and was like basically, what did I have to do to get in his good graces because it seemed like he was sort of running the show. And he basically told me what I had to do, which was prove myself to all of them, gain trust, and one of the big things that I got from talking to Todd and Amanda and Jean-Robert ... they all said they basically didn’t want to see me trying to throw signals to the other team. Telling them what I was doing or anything like that because, basically, it made sense.

Once you’re on a new team, you have to do your best to adapt to that new situation, just like you would any situation in Survivor or in life. Once something happens, you have to adapt so you can overcome whatever obstacle that is. And Sherea didn’t really ... like, she was more open to blatantly connecting with Peih-Gee. Peih-Gee started talking to her, but I was looking forward the whole time.  All I wanted to do was win a trip to a bath house.  I dont' know, it’s a very delicate line because you don’t know what’s going to happen in the future, so you don’t want to end up losing your old connections, but at the same time, you basically can’t piss off the people that are going to be deciding whether you’re going to be there right now.


Now you and Courtney would be the third Survivor showmance we’ve heard about. Is there anything going on or were you guys just having fun in China?

I mean, I’m not going to say we were full on Survivor dating but we’re definitely really close. And like we said on the show, there's no way to really describe that. I don’t really think that any showmance that happens is really a real relationship at all. I mean, we were definitely close, and there was definitely something there that was really, really nice for both of us. Because it gave us the chance to get out of the mind set of the game for at least a little while and I guess it did end up hurting me, but I don’t know. Without those little bits of time outside of the game, I would have lost my mind.


So when you’re sitting on the jury and you’re going to write down somebodies name to win a million dollars, what factors do you consider? Do you look at somebody who’s physically strong like James? Or someone who can really play the game mentally like Todd?

When I’m sitting there, what I’m doing my best to find out is - I know each person plays a different kind of game. So I want to find out what kind of game they’re playing and if they did it to the best of their ability. So someone like James who is, I’d say, you know 80% physical and 20% whatever. I’m going to say: ‘Well did he play the game to the best of his ability?’ And obviously yeah, he did great as far as physical challenges go. And someone like Todd, like you said, he’s playing a very strategic game, working it, moving people. And I’m going to say: ‘Did he play the game to the best of his ability.’ Or maybe somebody like Amanda who’s more of a let somebody else take control and then be the silent like, vice-president or whatever. I’m going to take into account the fact that even though that’s how she played, did she do a better job of that than say Todd did of strategizing? You have to take into account all the factors and I know that people play different games and I’m not going to judge one type of game play over another.


Well we can’t wait to see what happens and we look forward to seeing you in future episodes and at the live reunion. I just wanted to thank you for your time Frosti, good luck.

Thank you.


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

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