By John Powell – GlobalTV.com
Even though she was voted out last night on Survivor, Frannie Marin, the research coordinator from Cambridge, Massachusetts, is over-the-moon. And why wouldn’t she be? She made it to the merge. She made it to the jury. She also found love and a strength she didn’t know she even had until the island and the game tested her.
John Powell: How are you Frannie? Great to be talking to you.
Frannie Marin: I am having the time of my life!
John Powell: What was it like having to go back and revisit everything last night. A lot of Survivors sometimes have mixed emotions. How are you feeling?
Frannie Marin: I’m sure you’ve had to have some very hard conversations with some very upset people. This is not going to be like that! Those last couple of days that I was in the game meant the world to me and we’re just full of so much like joy that I was just laughing the whole time watching it back!
John Powell: Going into last night’s vote we obviously saw your surprise and bleeped exclamation. How shocked were you?
Frannie Marin: I knew for sure that my name was out there. I was expecting to see my name. How could it not be? For me, the most important conversation before tribal council was that one that you saw with me, Carolyn, Lauren, and Jaime standing around. Why were we so anxious? What was going on? Why are we so confused? And then we just say, okay, how about this? Change it right now! Let’s vote Heidi!
That conversation happened maybe ten minutes before tribal council. It was very, very last minute. I took that pretty seriously because I think that happens a lot on Survivor where the last conversation, that’s the thought that sticking in people’s heads, that’s what happens. I genuinely thought that Heidi was going to go home that night. It is a testament to the rest of them about how solid their plan was that even a crazy last minute decision like that didn’t didn’t shake what they were doing.
John Powell: Looking back over the game there was a turning point for you during that one, two-part challenge. You could have thrown the second part and saved Matt. I spoke to Matt about it. He understood but wished things would have turned out differently. What was your thinking during the challenge?
Frannie Marin: It was a 45 minute challenge so I had a lot of time to think about a lot of things. I looked at that group and it is not the best group for Matt. I think all of the people most empathetic to Matt were in my group. I loved my group…But Matt was doing very well socially at the beginning of the merge. Of course, what ends up making him a target for people was that everybody loves him! I was not that concerned about him because he we were trying to build a relationship with Brandon. I felt like there was some trust there. We’ve had this relationship with Jaime from Soka and I thought that he was going to be able to pull it out.
In that moment, I had the opportunity to beat an NFL player so I’m gonna do it and give myself and five other people who I’m trying to work with in this game safety. I can’t be mad at that.
John Powell: Matt updated us on how things are going relationship-wise with you two. Congratulations! What does it mean to have somebody like that in the game and how did you struggle with that? We saw various clips of you weighing the game and the emotional bond you had with Matt. Survivors do have issues sometimes balancing the relationship between the game and the personal bonds they have with people because these aren’t chess pieces. These are real people that you spend 24 hours a day with.
Frannie Marin: It was very, very hard. I mean, genuinely, a showmance was the absolute last thing I would have ever expected to happen to me! It’s so out of character for me! I mean, coming home and tell my family and friends I have a boyfriend now! And everybody’s was like…Wait! What?
It was so hard because the whole time I’m trying to stay in the game, I’m trying to play this game that I’ve waited to play for years so I was mentally fighting it. I was like: Not here! Not now! This can’t be happening!
Matt and I just have such a like genuine and real connection that we could not help ourselves. It is exactly like two dorky magnets. It transcended the game and did it knock me off my rocker a little bit and mess up my strategy, for sure. Obviously, I’m so happy with how it played out!
John Powell: Matt explained to me how it was impossible to hide your relationship. What did it mean to you to have him in the game?
Frannie Marin: It was incredible! You never think that you’re going to find that. Very early on we looked at each other and we looked into each other’s souls. We were like: I trust you! I never once even considered that he would lie to me about a single thing and I was honest with him about everything as well. It was very stabilizing for me. It was this safety net where I felt really comfortable and then when he goes I’m completely destabilized! I cried for four hours! I’m hungry! I’m tired! It meant the world to me to see him on the jury and see him smiling at me! It was so special.
John Powell: What was it like to reunite with him at Ponderosa? That must have been a moment for sure.
Frannie Marin: Oh, my God! It was incredible!
John Powell: Did it feel like a scene from a movie?
Frannie Marin: I think it was actually in slow motion! I loved it! I’m like running up the boardwalk and I jump into his arms! It was so special!
John Powell: On the opposite end of things, you were kind of up and down with Danny, back and forth, back and forth. What was it like to work with him and were you surprised at watching the episode and seeing how everything transpired?
Frannie Marin: It was delicious hour of television to watch people would be like: Frannie is too good! She needs to go! I wasn’t mad about any of those conversations.
Danny was really interesting to work with because you can kind of see it last episode where I bring up that I think these team members are playing the middle. We should try to organize something against them! He is immediately like: That’s illogical! We can’t do that!
Danny’s strategic style is he gets an idea in his head that he believes is the logical solution. He will not deviate from that. I’m somebody who is flexible and adaptable, It was hard for me sometimes to work with him strategically because we did not mesh in that way.
John Powell: Is there anything about your journey that you wished they would have shown?
Frannie Marin: They (the producers) were so kind to me. I’m so happy with what they showed, all those moments with Matt. I’ve thought about those for months! I did not think that I was going to get to see them on screen and I’ll tell you, Matt and I started holding hands long before that! (laughs)
John Powell: The best part is it is all documented. You guys can always go back and watch everything.
Frannie Marin: I’ve watched those scenes an embarrassing number of times. I’ve got them on loop in my house! They’re just running! We all had so much fun together! We were just silly! We would play games. We would like cry from laughter on a daily basis. Those people, like every one of them, are just so great! I could not have asked for a better group of people to go through this experience with.
John Powell: One final question, what were some of the things you debated when you were deciding who you were going to vote for as the winner of this season?
Frannie Marin: First of all, it’s a hard transition from being in the game, having strong opinions about who you’re working with, who you’re not who you trust and then all of a sudden you need to be completely objective.
I did not want to bring personal feelings into about who I like and who I don’t like. I was taking this very, very seriously. It becomes a game of trying to assess who has information and who has agency to use that information to their advantage. Who can demonstrate that to me at final tribal council? I feel like a big part of why I went out is because I did not have all the information. Information was flowing through other sources besides me. So, I’m trying to like suss out who is gathering as many pieces as they can so that they can make the puzzle that they want to make to win.
John Powell: It was great to talk to you today! Thank you so much for taking the time! It was wonderful watching you on the show. Your story was one of the most interesting and emotional journeys we’ve seen in quite some time but maybe, just maybe, your survivor journey isn’t over just yet.
Frannie Marin: John, cross your fingers! (laughs)