'Survivor' Castaway James Lim on That Amazing 'Death Glare' and Whose Battle 'Will Go Down Hard' (Exclusive)


The 25-year-old business analyst says his soul-puncturing stare being turned into a meme is the best 'consolation prize.'

If you're going to get voted off Survivor for nothing more than a bad tribe swap, you better make it memorable. 

That's just what James Lim did on Wednesday's episode of Survivor: Ghost Island. The 25-year-old business analyst was sent packing after the show's second tribe swap of the season, with no Ghost Island to help save him. To make matters worse, his one possible ally, Michael, voted against him, eliminating any possibility of Angela jumping sides and voting out Desiree instead. But that's how we were blessed with the death glare. 

"I'm glad that death glare, as it's been called, is already a gif and a meme online," James confessed to ET on Thursday about his soul-puncturing stare. "It's a consolation prize." 

"I knew I was a target, but I think my blindside reaction came from the four to one result. I realized in that instant that both Angela and Michael [voted against me]," he said, laughing about the "shock, the anger, the disappointment, the sadness and finally the acceptance" fans noticed in his eyes. "The look was one of, 'OK,  this is how I'm going to go out. You flipped on me. All right.' It was a knee-jerk reaction, but I'm glad it was a memorable moment that a lot of people are talking about." 

James was smart, athletic and able to create a few allies (but not enough on the new Malolo, evidently) during his brief time on Survivor. He was just dealt a bad hand. 

"Fundamentally, it was a terrible swap for me. The single worst scenario that I had in my mind going in ended up happening," James explained. "I mean, it's kind of a weird feeling to know there's not one move that I can blame for my own downfall. It's a bad swap."

"And it was a little bit of a bummer to lose a challenge and not have Jeff [Probst] bring up Ghost Island at all," he continued. "It seems a little inconsistent. Jacob and Donathan were immune from tribal [by going to Ghost Island], Kellyn and Stephanie had to come back for tribal, and now there's no Ghost Island." 

Still, he's a big fan of this season's theme. "As a season, it's amazing. There's a reason why there's a ton of us hardcore fans, who really knew the show, out there," he said. "The concept of reversing the curse and bringing back past players' idols, was such a fun thing to be a part of." 


As for who fans should keep an eye on this season, James said the Chris and Domenick feud "is going to go down hard, one way or another." "They're both huge characters," he explained, before giving a shout-out to his original alliance: Laurel, Libby and Donathan. 

"I'm biased, but this is going to be one hell of a season," he added. "So while I'm gone, and I hope it's a bummer for the fans, keep on watching, because it's going to blow your mind." 

Survivor airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBS.