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'Survivor' postgame: Julie says 'You can't put a price tag on faith'

April 28, 2011 |  6:06 pm

100311_SG0SG081[1] She was probably my favorite of the Zapatera tribe, someone who appeared to be playing the game the whole time but wasn’t running their mouth too much. Still, Julie Wolfe only lasted long enough to become the second member of the “Survivor: Redemption Island” jury.

Julie was a part of the tribe that threw an immunity challenge solely for the purpose of getting rid of the infamous Russell Hantz. In the end, the loyalty that Zapatera trumpeted earlier this season when voting out others did Julie in when they were down in the numbers after merging with the Ometepe tribe. Well, that and she unnecessarily confessed to stealing and burying Phillip’s swim trunks.

Anyway, I knew I liked Julie for sure when watching her post-show “Life on the Ponderosa” videos. People voted off “Survivor” are always understandably hungry, ready to scarf down so much food. But I can’t recall anyone wanting to brush their teeth after many days in the wilderness, and during my phone interview with Julie I told her we were kindred spirits in that regard.

“I was hungry and wanted to eat, but I could not wait to brush my teeth after 28 days,” she said.

She did go on to eat a favorite treat of hers, a sliced banana with peanut butter in the middle, frozen (I’m going to try that, how about you?). She also hung with David on the beach, which made me ask how he was in the game, and if he was as different at Ponderosa as it seemed to me.

“David, at the beginning, was weak. He had health issues… I wondered if he’d survive,” Julie said. “Later on, he did really well in the challenges. I’d prejudged this wimpy lawyer guy, he surprised me. And once he was at Ponderosa, he was on a big vacation, let his hair down.”

Julie said she didn’t want to say anything else without having seen the new Ponderosa videos, but since there’s nothing crazy in those posted Wednesday night, maybe we’ve got something to look forward to? And I think I know why Julie might not have immediately watched herself online after the show aired: The only other TV show she watches is “American Idol” (“I like the new ‘Idol,’ love J. Lo … I’ve always been for Jacob (Lusk), I’ve loved him since Day One.”)

But on the topic of things not seen, Julie also said we viewers didn’t see how strong her alliance was with Mike, Steve and Ralph. Following up on other’s post-show interviews, I asked how seriously she’d considered Russell’s proposition to join his alliance.

“[Laughs] Going into the game, I always respected Russell’s game. His strategy was incredible,” she said. “He convinced me he had an (immunity) idol, so I had to convince him that I would go his way. I even told him we were throwing the challenge.”

Julie said Russell was a poison that they had to get rid of. But if you remember, she said on this week’s show that she wasn’t there to make friends. Her house was in foreclosure and she went for the money. Even though she didn’t go for a life-changing experience, she got one via Matt’s spiritual journey.

“It all started with the duel between Matt and Kristi, where she gave him her Bible,” Julie said. “That was just… whoa. I got goosebumps. So when I lost, I was OK. I realize money is not everything, that you can’t put a price tag on faith. Mike introduced me to Horizon church in San Diego, and I love it.”


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— Anthony Williams / anthonyw_ent

Photos: Julie has her torch snuffed out by Jeff Probst before being sent to Redemption Island. Credit: CBS.