‘Battle Of The Seasons’ Exit Interview: Preston’s Hilarious ‘Hunger Games’ Take And The Huge Alliance He Never Wanted To Be A Part Of

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Preston Charles is our new favorite person. Behind the glitter and crazy outfits, there’s clearly a guy who knows how to have a good time in Turkey all the while realizing how incredibly ridiculous his own alliance is. Not caring all too much about the money ( admitting he wouldn’t have made it to the end) Preston took the time to enjoy the scenery and watch the others go at it.

During my recent chat with Preston about his ticket home with Mackenzie, the New Orleans castmate opened up about the meaningless drama (seriously!) and the San Diego alliance that he never even wanted. Plus, does he really think Knight and Jemmye should give their relationship a second chance?

What were your first thoughts once you landed in Turkey and realized you would have to work with your New Orleans team?
PRESTON CHARLES: ‘Oh, crap. Balls. What did I get myself into?’ [Laughs]

Seriously. Were you nervous going in?
Yeah, it was my very first challenge and I was extremely nervous, and I really didn’t know what to expect. And on that long flight from the United States to Turkey all I wanted to do was go to bed, and they were like, ‘No, no, no. No one’s going to bed. We have more.’ And I was just like, ‘No, they’re not going to throw us into a challenge right now!’ So, I was terrified.

Knight gave you a hard time in the beginning. What’s your take on your relationship with him?
Knight and I have always had a tumultuous relationship, so that wasn’t that shocking. Knight is always going to be that ‘bro-y dude, hockey player guy’ who doesn’t really think much of this. I think I’m his only queer friend – and we’re not really friends. I’m like his only queer acquaintance.

You really showed what a great competitor you are in the first challenge. That must have been awful – falling into the water.
Oh my God. So, I have PTSD from that challenge. Any time I get on anything slightly high – I’m freaking out. I really don’t know how I got on that ladder again. I don’t know how I climbed on there again. I mean, I actually, on that challenge I perforated my ear drum. So, I slammed into the water – yeah, I destroyed my eardrum. So, I have no clue how I had the balance to go through and make it through. I think maybe the main thing was the fact was that I knew I was going to be on television and if I didn’t make it through I would be the worst competitor ever.

I can’t believe they didn’t show that part!
Yeah, I mean, I also downplayed it a lot because I was just like, the last thing I want them to do was show me on my first challenge hobbling around with my head tilted to the side, not being able to hear.

That’s true. Your team was aligned with a ton of teams, but whom did you think was going to be the biggest threat?
I thought really the largest threat was San Diego, which was odd – well, yeah, and this whole alliance to me is nuts. I just don’t get it. I don’t know if you noticed this or not, but I wasn’t really that involved in it – they didn’t really ask me my decision about anything – and all of a sudden I just hear we’re in an alliance with all of this other people, and I’m just like, ‘Oh. I guess this is the way it’s gonna go down.’

It was a huge alliance! I was hoping you’d eventually align more with the vets like Brooklyn and Fresh Meat.
Well, for a while the plan for that whole challenge was kind of not really – was to make an alliance without making an alliance. So, having it seem like I was on people’s side when I actually wasn’t. I mean, for me, I would have loved – because I actually like Brooklyn’s team – I love J.T. and Devyn a lot. I really like them. They’re great people. I don’t necessarily like Zack or Frank – I don’t think they’re terrible people, don’t get me wrong – I don’t think that. But they’re just obnoxious. They’re kind of cocky. The whole alliance thing just did not play out the way I wanted it to. And the other thing is that, how do you have an alliance with the entire house?

Exactly! You’re going to turn on each other sooner or later.
Right? I couldn’t grasp when they’re like, ‘The entire house is in alliance!’ Out of 32 people, you’re in an alliance with 26? I mean, how does that make any sense?

It doesn’t! Well, besides that, what were some of your favorite moments in Turkey?
My favorite moments were when I hung out by myself, when I was picking flowers and making floral arrangements.

Hah! It was a cute moment between you and Mackenzie on your last night. Is that what you tended to do a lot?
Yeah, that’s really what I loved most about being there, was looking at all of the beautiful scenery, and being in this exotic, gorgeous place that most people wouldn’t even fathom going to, and just sitting back and relaxing. Another great thing I loved was hanging around, we had this – so, Jasmine has this alter ego named Rashit, and we used to call it Rashit’s Bar. And so, we would be hanging out there, drinking and everything. I didn’t really drink much, I would have a glass of wine at the end of the day, but all of the other ones had a lot of fun drinking at Rashit’s Bar.

That doesn’t seem surprising! But did anything else shock you while there?
I think what surprised me the most is we’re all adults, and there was just a general lack of respect toward each other. That was just really shocking to me. When I did The Real World I learned a lot about myself, and I saw a lot of the ugly in me, and I was just like, ‘That’s not necessarily the person I’d like to be.’ And I grew from that experience. And these days, it seems like a lot of the people who were on The Real World –St. Thomas is the only one I give, like a complete, ‘you can act like an asshole because you haven’t seen yourself on television yet.’ But a lot of these people still seemed like they carried around that same behavior they had on The Real World.

That’s true, I mean obviously there’s a money prize, but it seems really cutthroat this season.
Yeah, and I mean, I’m gonna be honest. Come on. I knew when I went there, I wasn’t going to win any money. That’s not what this is about. If I go in here being like, ‘I’m gonna win all this money,’ I’m gonna be heartbroken when I leave. That’s not happening. [Laughs]

Who would you have wanted on your team instead? And you can’t choose New Orleans.
And I can’t choose New Orleans?

Well, you can choose some people if you want.
All right. Well, I wouldn’t choose New Orleans anyway! [Laughs.] So, I would have to choose Devyn – I don’t know, I just love Devyn. And then, I would have to choose Derek. And I think I’m gonna have to go with C.J.

Is there any more drama fans can expect coming up?
I think there’s definitely gonna be a LOT more drama. I know things got REALLY intense and crazy after I left. Expect much more drama. Expect to be surprised…a lot of people took the game to a personal level. Yeah, I don’t even know why they would do that. Like, when I was watching it, I saw all of the things that Chet said [about me]. And someone asked me do I take that personally, and I was like, ‘No! This is a game. That’s not real life.’ You know what I mean? These people can say whatever they want about me. They’re not my friends.

Who were you the closest to in the house?
I was close with Devyn, and Jasmine, Ashley…pretty much them. I got along with all of the girls really well, and I got along with Derek really well. Zack and Frank and Alton – all those other guys, didn’t really speak to me much, or if they did, they tried to make fun of me or something like that, or try to get under my skin a little bit. And I’m just like, I’m completely comfortable with who I am at this point. I love eyeliner, and glitter, and I like to wear crazy outfits.

You mentioned you knew it was going to come down to you and Mackenzie against Jemmye and Knight. Was there any discussion at all on who was going to head to the arena?
Mackenzie wanted to volunteer herself. God knows why. And, so, I knew right from there that if Mackenzie’s volunteering herself that means I have to go with Mackenzie. There’s no real choice about any of this. And it wasn’t even like, ‘Oh, MacKenzie, I’m volunteering…‘ it was just like, we knew that we were gonna have to go in. Jemmye and Knight played this whole card like, ‘Oh, you guys were in the alliance because of us,’ and I turned to them and I go, ‘what? I didn’t ask to be in this alliance.’ None of you people can actually distinguish your head from your assholes, so, I don’t know.

The arena looks so intimidating. What were your first thoughts when you went in against Sarah and Chet?
Oh, I was just like ‘it’s The Hunger Games.’ It’s complete Hunger Games. Sarah was Katniss, and freaking Chet was Gale! [Laughs]

What did you think when you lost and were going to be leaving Jemmye and Knight behind?
Honestly, when I left that place, all I could think of was how long it was going to take me to fly back from New York. I was like, ‘Oh well. Sucks to be them!’

Hilarious. Any hope for Jemmye and Knight to get back together?
Between Jemmye and Knight? Oh, God. I mean, I would hope not, ‘cause I am really sick of that story.

Would you ever do another challenge again? What kind of challenge would you want it be?
I would love it to be like Project Runway style. [Laughs] Battle of The Queers. That would be a really fun one. I don’t know. I can’t ever say never. You don’t know what’s going to happen. Maybe.

Let’s hope! There’s so many that return every season that you start to wonder what everyone does outside the challenges.
Well, ’cause some of these people; the only thing they do do is challenges. [Laughs] Not to knock that! I’m not knocking it. Please don’t make it seem like I’m knocking it.

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