Ciera Eastin made a big splash in her first season, Blood vs. Water, by not only forcing a rock draw but by voting out her mom. She returned for her second shot in Survivor: Cambodia, where she started on the Bayon tribe with Jeremy Collins. The two didn’t appear to have a working relationship, but it didn’t matter, as Bayon avoided tribal council before swapping on Day 7. Ciera and Jeremy remained on different tribes until the merge, both forming opposing alliances. At the merge, Ciera made up a lie, telling Jeremy that she overheard Andrew Savage talking about wanting to target him. The lie didn’t work, and Ciera’s closest ally Kass McQuillen was voted out. But after Kelley Wentworth idoled out Savage at the next vote, Ciera joined a temporary voting bloc with Jeremy and his allies, taking out Kelly Wiglesworth. Ciera planned to take out Stephen Fishbach next and believed she had Jeremy on board, but at tribal council, Jeremy played an idol on Fishbach, which in turn sent Ciera packing. In the end, Ciera, along with the rest of the jury, voted for Jeremy to win the game.
Inside Survivor reached out to Jeremy to get his thoughts on Ciera’s return to Survivor: Game Changers.
Disclaimer: This interview was conducted in June 2016 while Survivor: Game Changers was still filming in Fiji.
1) Hey Jeremy, thanks for doing this. We didn’t see much of Ciera in Cambodia until the merge – when she was all about “play the game!” What are the facets of her game that aren’t often highlighted on TV? What is she like to live with day to day?
Ciera is fun and very helpful around camp. She was the one that thought of games to play to kill time and was good for morale around camp. She is a young mother, and she took that motherly role (her along with Kelly Wiglesworth) and would cut up fruit and serve it to everyone.
2) You used one of your immunity idols to save Stephen Fishbach and send Ciera home. Why did you target Ciera at that point, rather than say, Kelley Wentworth, who had made a big idol play and was better in challenges? What was it that made Ciera such a big threat?
Wentworth was a bigger physical threat (than Ciera), but she wasn’t a physical threat with all the other physical threats in the game (Joe, Savage, Tasha, Spencer, Wigs). At the time, Ciera was a bigger social and strategic threat. She seems to go with the Sandra Diaz-Twine gameplay of “anyone but me, ” and I felt if she kept moving in the game that she would be very dangerous.
3) We’ve heard from players in the past that Ciera is an exceptional liar. Is this true? And can you think of any examples of Ciera’s great bluffs?
She is!! When she told me that Savage was targeting me and Joe. She was very believable. She is a sweet, cute young lady and she makes you feel like she is sincere about everything she says and she looks you right in the eyes and speaks with passion.
4) Do you think the perception of Ciera as a “big moves player” will hurt her going into this season? And if so, how should she attempt to counter that perception?
That big move line will haunt her. I think everyone will remember her for that and the fact she voted out her mom. I don’t think she should counter that… that’s her game… play the middle and make big moves.
5) Cambodia was a very strategy heavy season, with people playing full throttle from Day 1. Do you think Ciera, and this group of returnees in general, will come into the game with a similar mindset?
Definitely. I think this is going to be a wild strategic season and everyone is going to hit the ground running. I think it will be similar to Season 31 and Ciera will be ready for that.
6) Who on this cast are Ciera’s biggest threats?
If everyone out there remembers her “big moves” speech, that means Ozzy and Tony are probably thinking they are the “big moves” that she is going to be after this season. But she is willing to play with anyone as long as they are willing to play with her.
7) On the flip-side, who on this cast should Ciera align with and why?
I think she should work with those big threats. Go with Tony, Ozzy, Sandra, Cirie, JT, etc. The bigger the threat, the better. She should use her social game to pull them in and then flip on them.
8) Putting you on the spot here, how far do you think Ciera will make it? And, who is your overall pick to win and why?
I think she will definitely make the merge, and I see her making Top 6. Maybe Top 5. My pick to win is the other Sierra. For the simple fact that I know she was one of the last players added and a lot of the time the last player added sneaks in and steals the win. But I reserve the right to change my winner pick weekly!
9) Lastly, before we let you go, what is new in the world of Jeremy since we last saw you in Cambodia? How are Val and the kids?
I am back to work. I even went back to school. I am back coaching my daughters’ basketball teams. Val gave birth to Remy Bodhi, and he is the coolest little dude in the world. I haven’t seen the NBA finals or Father’s Day in three years, so I’m enjoying the little things. Nothing has really changed much except I get noticed at Target a little more.
Thanks again to Jeremy for taking part. For more on Ciera, you can check out her cast retrospective and official cast bio. Stay tuned to Inside Survivor for more Playing With Game Changers interviews. Survivor: Game Changers premieres March 8, 2017, on CBS.