On the first day of Survivor: Gabon, Danny "GC" Brown, 26, of Portland, Ore., won his tribe's first individual immunity idol. He made a to-the-end alliance with Kenny Hoang and soon after was anointed tribe leader. With such a track record you'd think he would make it to the end, but heavy lays the crown. Lack of food, lack of sleep and a few confrontations over rice left GC ready to call it a day. Brown talked with TVGuide.com Friday about the hardships of Survivor and the pressures of leadership that led to his departure.
TV Guide.com: You started off pretty strong by winning the first individual immunity idol on your tribe and then being chosen tribe leader, but you seemed to lose your way. What broke you down?
Danny "GC" Brown: After I was voted the leader, things got a little hectic around camp. I was chosen and four other people tried to take the leadership role at that point. It was strange because now I was like, "why would you guys pick me for the leader if you guys really want to be the leader yourselves?" I felt that we didn’t need one and I didn't really want to be the leader because it just put a target on my back. When I did try to ask anyone to do anything it was like they didn’t want to listen to me. I felt like I was just being set up to fail.
TV Guide.com: Jeff [Probst] was pretty persistent at tribal council in urging your team to pull together and choose a leader. What did you think about his "coaching" at that point?
Brown: If he wouldn't have mentioned it, then I wouldn’t have been picked to be leader or the issue wouldn't even have been brought up. That would have been great for me because I could have stayed in the background and shown people that I am a helper around camp and lead by example.
TV Guide.com: What about your performance in some of the challenges? From what we saw it looked like you kind of gave up a little bit.
Brown: I gave up in one challenge for a second to catch my breath. That was the one where we had to dig in the hole. I was just thirsty and hot and exhausted. I took a break and I do feel bad because we lost that challenge and if I would have tried a little bit harder maybe we would have won. You know, that's life; you make mistakes sometimes. As far as other challenges go, I definitely performed a lot better than the world probably believes I did, but that's TV and that’s fine with me. At least I know what really happened and I'm okay with it.
TV Guide.com: Where did you disappear to before the immunity challenge?
Brown: [Laughs] Oh, I just went fishing and was trying to bring some food back so we could eat before the challenge because we hadn't eaten anything but rice and grasshoppers. I didn’t know it was that close to the challenge, but when I started hearing them calling I knew I was in trouble and I needed to get back there real quick.
TV Guide.com: Did you enjoy your time on the show?
Brown: Yes, I did, but it was hard and I didn't enjoy the way I played it. I made a lot of mistakes. I should have been a lot more calm and held my tongue more. That's one thing about me; I like to speak my mind. I feel like if someone can tell me how they're feeling about something then I should be able to do the same. Unfortunately, it didn't look too good on TV.