Did you deliberately set out to be ‘the villain’ on SAS Australia?
My philosophy from the outset was that I’m not here to comply. I’m here to be myself and if I get punished, I get punished. The test is to see how much I can resist and be resilient. It’s not about complying or hiding.
Even if that gets your fellow contenders punished, too?
Yes, because that’s where the fascination is! The more I talked back, the more other people got punished and the more people eliminated themselves because they couldn’t handle it.
This show really pushed all our fake façades away on day one, and if my behaviour got to people, that just meant I was helping sort the weak from the real – filtering out the bulls--t. They all turn against me. I challenge the status quo.
Are you as full-on in real life?
No, but creators are different to normal folk so maybe the other contenders and the commandos didn’t know how to handle me. I actually come from a place of kindness and compassion – that’s what I’m about. But people are scared of love, which is weird.
I felt like I was being disruptive, only in that I was disrupting expectations of who I am.
What made you decide to do the show?
I think the [Channel] Seven execs wanted me after I danced around on another show for them [The Real Dirty Dancing in 2019]. They called me up and said, “We want you to do SAS,” and I was like, “What’s SAS?”
When they explained that real commandos would try to break me mentally, physically, spiritually, physiologically and emotionally, I was like, “Sign me up. I’m a masochist!”
How did you prepare?
I was told to watch some episodes of the UK version of the show beforehand, but I didn’t want to. This is an adventure and if I knew what I was getting myself into, it would ruin it. For me, it was about spontaneity and being thrown in at the deep end. Once I knew I was going on the show, I bought a 20kg weight vest and trained with that.
It was the most excruciating, uncomfortable and annihilating thing. I tortured myself.
Do you have any regrets about how your time on the show is being conveyed?
No. I just wanted to be taken out of my comfort zone – and I have been. The truth is that I love being challenged and I love being scared. This is the toughest thing I’ve ever done, but it’s made me feel so alive.
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