Best known for his wild chicken dancing and unintelligible mumbling, Big Tom Buchanan was among the few Survivor: All-Stars who enjoyed life on the deserted isle. Too bad all that goofy behavior may've lost him $1 million. Here, the Virginia farmer jaws with TV Guide Online — just prior to Sunday's finale we should point out — about allying with Rob and Amber, Sue Hawk's extreme makeover and his linguistic issues.
TV Guide Online: You did a song and dance when Sue left. So what do you think of her makeover?
Big Tom Buchanan: She damned sure needed it. I'd like to get that number because maybe if they can do something for her, maybe they can do something for me!
TVGO: It is a pretty impressive transformation.
Big Tom: From an ugly duckling to a duck. She's got bad breath and hairy legs. Maybe they shaved her legs, anyway. Hey listen, did they get her a new brain?
TVGO: I didn't see that on the list of work she had done.
Big Tom: They should have got her a brain with a V-8 motor.
TVGO: Switching gears, why were you so upset at Rob for making fun of your son, Bo?
Big Tom: He bad-mouthed my son, and that was walking on sacred ground. You don't talk about my family. I signed up to the game and anything he says about me; I'm thick-skinned and I can take it. I'm not going to listen. He's messing with my family. I may not have won a car, I may not have won much money, but I'll tell you what — I've won more than all of them because I've got a good family. He has no class at all when he talks about a two-time all-American middle linebacker, who has a 3.2 GPA and never gave me a minute's trouble.
TVGO: Speaking of Bo, you put him right to work during his time on the island.
Big Tom: He worked for the game. He did all he could. Plus, that made me a winner just to have my son out there.
TVGO: During Rob and Amber's date, why didn't you try and align with Rupert and Jenna?
Big Tom: Rupert had a chance to do something with me the whole game. He let Jenna pull him around by the nose the whole time, and he wouldn't change his alliance. I wouldn't either. He was dumb and I was dumber. I felt like our alliance would hold up because I was a swing vote. I was on Rob and Amber's tribe from the beginning, and that was one reason I couldn't believe they double-crossed me.
TVGO: You and Rupert seemed to be working all the time you were out there.
Big Tom: Absolutely. But we enjoyed working, we enjoyed fishing together and doing things. That was part of the fun of the game. Especially me getting to fish and swim. An old farmer doesn't get that chance very often.
TVGO: Does it bother you that so many players were just plain lazy?
Big Tom: Yes, but that is part of the game. What you do on the show is usually what you do in life. If you are sorry on the show, you are sorry in life. Very few people are different. Everybody wants to make an excuse, saying, "TV portrayed me wrong." Hey, you need to take a good look at yourself. That would be my thinking.
TVGO: After the merge, why didn't you align with Lex, since you are friends?
Big Tom: I couldn't wait for the merge. I had to lie and say I hated Lex, and he's my best friend. All of a sudden, when we finally got to the merge, I said, "Lex, I can't do it. We've got to have more people." [My tribe] had six and they had three. If I went over, that would have made it five to four and I couldn't stick my neck out. We needed one more to even it out.
TVGO: Would you do another Survivor?
Big Tom: I don't think so. I think I'll send my son next time. I think I'm getting too old. I'm 48 and this time it hurt me. I'm competing against kids half my age and they had no respect for me out there.
TVGO: Were you surprised they made fun of the way you talk?
Big Tom: No, no, no. I make fun of myself. I laugh at myself sometimes. I can't hardly understand them, so they laugh at me, but I laugh at them.