The Challenge: Spies, Lies, and Allies eliminated player admits he made 'a dumb move'

·12 min read

Warning: This article contains spoilers about Wednesday's episode of The Challenge: Spies, Lies, and Allies.

Ed Eason made an honorable move on The Challenge: Spies, Lies, and Allies by volunteering to go into elimination instead of his friend Logan Sampedro, who was recovering from a leg injury. But in a game not exactly known for honor, Eason was rewarded for his sacrifice by having to compete in a Pole Wrestle match against the undefeated Pole Wrestle champ Kyle Christie. The Circle alum lost and was sent home.

"That's definitely a rookie move," Eason admits to EW about saving his friend at his own expense. "I think I was just excited to compete and show people what I have. I didn't want to play the card where I just was in the background the whole time and floated to the end. I came in with the mindset of like, attack, attack, attack! Show these people who the hell you are and what you're made of. And I just got too ready to compete at every opportunity that I could that I probably should have laid low and not wanted to throw myself into eliminations. That was a little stupid."

Below, Eason unpacks his elimination loss, why he chose to go against the Pole Wrestle pro (he had no idea!), and more.

The Challenge
The Challenge

MTV 'The Challenge: Spies, Lies, and Allies'

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How are you feeling about your elimination now that you've had some time to process it all?

ED EASON: I honestly think it went great. I'm definitely proud of how I did, but I was stupid. I mean, I didn't know what I was really getting into there. But now that I know what I did, I want to get in and do that same elimination again, but I'd do it different this time.

How would you do it differently?

I definitely would not go 110 percent all out right off the rip because I did that. I used a lot of gas, and my gas tank wasn't very big, so I burned out pretty quick. Kyle could just kind of hang on, weather the storm and then use them lanky arms and just yank it out. So I think next time when I do it, I'll definitely conserve some energy and focus more on the wrestle too than the pole. I think I was just trying to use brute force and yank it out of his hands, but if I were to use more wrestling strategy, I think we could have done way better.

It looked like you got the upper hand multiple times, especially when you were repeatedly slamming Kyle's head into the ground — what was going through your mind at that point?

I definitely felt like I was the more, I guess, powerful man in the elimination. I was just driving him into the ground, picking him up, and just putting him right into the dirt. I was like, "Oh man, how is he still hanging on?!" So I just kept doing it, and it wore me out. At that point, I was feeling great, but I ran out of gas quick doing that.

At what point did you realize you were going to lose?

He got it out of my hands the first time, and at that point, I was like, "Damn, I'm pretty tired. We gotta go again?!" The second round, I really gave it my all. I was like, "I'm going to have to do something in this round big," but I didn't know what. When you're in the moment there, it's hard to come up with a game plan, so I really wasn't thinking at all, just get some energy, let's go, and get back in there, and my same strategy did not work, obviously. I needed some longer arms or something, I think.

Do you regret sacrificing yourself for Logan, knowing it cost you your game?

I guess here and there, a little bit yes and no. I thought it was a good move. It's definitely an honorable way to exit. I wish I didn't exit, but, you know, that's the way it happened. I feel like it's a good setup if I ever were to come back, if the show were to ask me to be on again. I think I can definitely run with that and be like, "You guys know how loyal I am, how I play the game." So I think it set me up well if I ever do a future season where people know Ed's not the most sneaky or tactical guy or backstabbing guy. [Laughs] But if I were to play it again, I would definitely play as more of a sneaky backstabbing guy, for sure.

Where did you even get the idea to make such an honorable, sacrificial move when this is an individual game for a million dollars?

Yeah, I honestly think it just came down to the fact I didn't know what the hell I was doing in there. [Laughs] That was my first time on the show, and I was like, this seems like the right move to make. So I did it, and everybody was like, "Wow, that's so cool of you," but then yeah, in the back of their heads, they're probably like, "That was really stupid of you. Why would you ever do that?" Looking back now, I can see how that might have been a dumb move, but when you're in there for the first time, I really don't know what to do.

How's your friendship with Logan now after you made that move for him?

We still talk on like Instagram and stuff. But obviously, he lives in Spain, I live in Philly. I mean, we're completely different. It's not like we're hanging out every day, you know? He's definitely a good dude though; I like him.

Do you think he would have made that move for you if your roles had been reversed?

Probably not. [Laughs] He's smart. He's a smart dude; he would have been a little more tactical.

What did you think when you walked into The Lair and saw the Pole Wrestle setup?

So actually, we walked into The Lair, and usually, we walk in, there's something set up, so you know I'm up against like a puzzle, or this is like a physical thing. But we walked in, and it was completely empty. There was nothing there. I think in the edit it shows the pole, and then us walking in, but there was nothing in the middle. So at that point, I have no idea what we're about to get into. TJ was like, "Pick your partner. Who do you want to go against?" And I'm like, "Usually we see what it is, do I get to see what it is first?" And he's like, "Nah, just pick someone." And I was like, "S---. Okay." So I had no idea what it was at the time.

Ah, that makes more sense as to why you picked Kyle, who is undefeated in this particular elimination. He even beat CT in a three-way Pole Wrestle, so if you didn't know it was Pole Wrestle —

Yeah, no, according to the show, I'm definitely going to look like a big idiot there. [Laughs] No, there was literally nothing, just an empty pit. That was the first time it was ever empty like that, so we were all a little confused. What the hell could it be? Some people thought maybe Pole Wrestle or like... Balls In? I don't even know what that is; apparently, there's some game with like a ball? They were throwing out all kinds of guesses, but nobody knew what it was.

The Challenge
The Challenge

MTV

Okay, wait, I've got to ask… have you ever seen any previous seasons of The Challenge?

I saw one episode.

Ahh... okay.

[Laughs] Yeah. I wasn't really prepared. I thought I knew what the show was. I thought I was just going to have to go in, do physical challenges, beat people, and then that's how you win. But it turns out it's much more political and sneaky and conniving than that, and I was not ready for that at all. So that's where I should have watched and prepared and came up with a better game plan.

I asked that because usually walking into an elimination and seeing just an empty pit means a physical headbanger like Pole Wrestle or Balls In — which it sounds like you've never seen before — and that would impact who you'd pick as your partner. You've got some homework to do!

[Laughs] Yeah. I know. I was talking to a bunch of different people trying to weigh out what my best option was. I was going with like the whole honor theme where I was like, "I'm not going to backstab my team, so nobody from team Sapphire is going in against me." That meant that Nelson and CT were safe, although I probably maybe should have picked Nelson. [Laughs] Really, my only two options in my head were Cory and Kyle, and I still didn't know, standing there, who I was going to pick. I'm going back and forth, back and forth, back and forth, and then I just blurted out Kyle.

You were the first Netflix reality show contestant to make the crossover onto The Challenge. Was that always the goal for you?

I never even thought of that! I guess that is pretty neat. [Laughs] It was funny actually, when I got done with The Circle, so many people were like, "Ed, you've got to apply for The Challenge, you would be so good for that show." I didn't really watch it, so I wasn't 100 percent sure what it was, but I'm like, "Yeah, I'll definitely apply!" A couple of weeks went by, and they reached out to me. I was like, "Whoa, look at this! This is destiny right here. The Challenge is coming after me." They were like, "Do you want to maybe be on the show? Here's an application; we'd love to have you if you make it through." I was excited that they reached out.

If you do get invited back, how are you going to prepare differently now that you know what to expect?

Before I went on this season, all I did was lift weights, so I was in really bad cardio shape when I got there. Now I've been training for a boxing fight coming up in December, they're doing a little reality boxing, so I've been training heavy on the cardio. I didn't realize how much cardio boxing is, so I'm definitely going to be more endurance-ready if they got any kind of runs. I know in the final they like to have longer runs, so you bet your ass, if I'm going to make it there I'm going to whoop everybody in the running because my cardio is just, wow, miles ahead of what it was before. I'm still going with the lifting, though, so I am a little powerhouse. Don't get me wrong — I'm small, but I'm mighty.

Are you going to watch other seasons before coming back?

Yeah, I think I definitely need to go back and watch more seasons. I obviously have been following along with this one. Everybody there was bringing up past seasons, stuff that happened a long time ago, and I'm like, "What the hell are they talking about? I don't know what's going on here." A lot of the rookies were in the same boat, like, I don't know, this is from a couple seasons ago, I don't know what's going on.

What did you learn through your experience this season that you're going to apply to future seasons?

I definitely learned that this game is very sneaky and if you're going to make it far, you don't need to be the best athlete or the most genius person out there. You really got to just bewell-roundedd and be a good manipulator. If I ever go back, I'm going to lay a little lower, not volunteer myself all the time to go into elimination. That's a dumb move! Definitely be way more political. I'm going to have to backstab people. That's how you do good in this game. I've got to play less with my heart. I always want to be an honorable guy, but in this game, you've got to be sneaky.

What was it like competing on a reality show without your mom by your side?

I definitely think for this one, it was a good choice for [my mom] Tam to stay at home just because of how physical and intense this one is. [Laughs] It was probably the coolest thing I've ever done in my life going on The Challenge. I had such a blast doing action movie stunts and jumping off of cliffs, strapped to roofs of cars; no one gets to do that! I think I was just there having fun, taking it all in my first time around, and not so much thinking about the game where I really should have been more locked in and focused.

Since so much happens in the house that we don't see on TV, is there anything that happened this season that you wish had been shown?

I was always up to goofy s--- and they definitely played some of it, which I liked. I've been getting a lot of like comments on my Instagram; people are like, "We love that you made this fun." It sounds like the last few seasons have been very serious and just focused on the money and backstabbing. One time that came to mind, it was actually me and Logan being funny. Everybody was hanging out in the living room one night, and me and him took one of the cutting boards from the kitchen and all the old fruits and vegetables that went bad, and we were playing Home Run Derby and whacking the fruits with the cutting board into the trees over the fence. And then security came, and they were like, "You guys can't be doing this," and we're like, "Ah s---, all right." But we were always up to dumb stuff like that.

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