Spencer Duhm of Survivor Tocantins: Interview

I just thought that, since everyone is playing a game, was that adding one level of complexity for you, or just another layer of strategy…

It was definitely a strategy of mine. Not my central strategy, but it was something I consciously decided to do. It added a little complexity, like last night in the conversation I had with Sydney, I had to tiptoe around my words and make sure I don't give anything away. When we talk about our relationships and stuff, I had to choose my words carefully. But it didn't happen that often and it wasn't a big deal at all. It was such a non-issue, I was surprised they even brought it up on the show. I remember giving the interview, but I didn't think it was an issue at all. I was surprised they decided to show it.

And you've always been a fan of Survivor?

Crazy, weird, obsessed fan, yes. Since the very first season.

Did you base your gameplay on anyone from previous seasons, or is that something you can't really do out there?

Every season is different. The people are always different. So it's hard to emulate any previous person or strategy, because you never know what cards you're going to be dealt. On TV, you can say that type of person is always loyal, that type of person can be trusted, and you get out there and it's a different person. They may appear to be like someone you watched on the show in the past, but trustworthy, strategy-wise, and where their head's at is going to be different. You can't base your game on that stuff.

And as far as coming out in your real life, was that a big issue for you?

It was right after I turned 19 and it was a big event. It was such a relief to finally be able to accept myself and get up and say my friends will accept me for who I am, and if they don't, I don't need them. And they all were extremely supportive, my family's been extremely supportive… everyone's been awesome, so no complaints. I was very fortunate in my coming out experience.

And what's next?

I'm back in classes this semester, and I'll most likely take classes this summer to make up for the fall, so I'm booked for the time being. I'm not going to L.A. to be an actor or anything. No worries there. And I'll use the money I get for grad school, most likely. I have a pretty boring life, yeah, it sucks. (laughs)