TV Guide Online: Was the softer Jerri just a game plan?
Jerri Manthey: It definitely was part of my strategy to keep my mouth shut. Basically, it was coming from the way I was perceived [on Outback] and the harsh feedback I got from the public. But because of that experience, a lot of things in my life changed. I was kind of a controlling person and I definitely was lacking patience. But those are all things I have focused and worked on throughout the last three years.
TVGO: You had a little relapse after Colby got cut...
Jerri: I equate that to going to the state championships and playing the best team in the league and losing. Then a year later you get to play them again and you win. You are going to take the time and the energy to revel in that victory.
TVGO: So we don't have to try to get the two of you to couples therapy?
Jerri: No! I have absolutely nothing against Colby. That's why I was kind of shocked at the weird negative stuff he was saying. I really never got that directly from him, so to hear it on the show was a total shock to me.
TVGO: Do you think that your team made a good strategic decision in voting you off?
Jerri: I don't know what happened after I left, so I can't really say. But of course I would have liked to have seen Amber go instead of me.
TVGO: Were you aware of the whole Amber-Boston Rob romance?
Jerri: I kind of sensed there was something going on there, but I had no idea that it was as intense as it was. Romance is just so out of place, especially in the context of this game. It is a risky move.
TVGO: Shii Ann and Kathy made some disparaging comments about you not pulling your weight. Do you think they were justified?
Jerri: There was absolutely no truth in that whole weird conversation that [Shii Ann] had with the camera. Nobody ever said anything to me about having a problem with my work ethic. I'm a very hard worker and I get very involved in projects that need to be done.
TVGO: They often showed you complaining about the harsh living conditions. Were you happy to finally leave?
Jerri: Not at all. That was another moment where I was really bummed. I didn't say anything that anybody else wasn't saying. That thing that we slept on every night we called the rack. People would wake up in the morning going, "Oh, my arm fell asleep," "My leg hurts," "My back is killing me." Every morning, everybody woke up talking about what pain they were in. They just chose to cut to me saying it that particular morning. Again, I was just like, "Why are they picking on me?" Whoever edited that show does not like me. It was that simple.
TVGO: When you got voted off, you said the first thing you were going to do was eat chocolate. Did you, and what kind did you have?
Jerri: Yeah, I totally got chocolate. It was the first thing that I ate when I walked off that little platform. I can't remember what kind. It was a local chocolate, and I ate it so fast I didn't even look at the wrapper.
TVGO: What is your favorite kind of chocolate?
Jerri: I'm a total Snickers whore. It is the world's most-perfect candy bar.
TVGO: Looking back, is there anything you would have done differently?
Jerri: No. I don't think I could have done anything differently to have made my stay out there any longer. I am very proud of the way I played the game and I think I did everything in my power. I feel very lucky to have lasted as long as I did, given that I went to more tribal councils than anybody else in the entire game. I seemed to always be on the losing tribe. It was pretty depressing.
TVGO: Reading over your bio, it says you are writing, acting, doing speaking engagements, volunteering with several charities, working as a chef and running your own production company. Phew. I'm tired just reading that.
Jerri: I just recently joined a band as well.
TVGO: What kind of band?
Jerri: It's called the Mutaytor. We are a 30-person group, like Stomp meets Blue Man Group meets Cirque du Soleil. We've got like 50 drums, fire performers, arial artists, hula-hoopers, mutant freaks and costumed crazy folks. We just have a blast onstage. Everybody that goes to see this show says the same thing: "You guys don't perform, you throw a party."
TVGO: What's your role?
Jerri: I'm drumming. That's why I took a drum with me to Australia, because I actually do play the drums.
TVGO: Would you ever go back for another Survivor?
Jerri: Hell no! But the funny thing is that I said that last time. I would go back if the prize was $5 million.