‘Survivor’: Dan Reveals How He Knew To Play His Idol & If He’s Pissed At Kara For Turning On Him

After one of the most jaw-dropping 'Survivor' tribal councils in history, Dan was eliminated during the Nov. 21 episode. Now, he's dishing all about that unexpected 'idol nullifier,' his relationship with Kara and more.

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Dan Rengering was 100% confident he was safe at tribal council during the Nov. 21 episode of Survivor: David vs. Goliath — after all, he played a hidden immunity idol, guaranteeing votes against him would not count. What he didn’t know, though, was that Carl Boudreaux also had an advantage up his sleeve: An “Idol nullifier,” which took away the power of an idol if used against the person who played it. Carl and his fellow former David tribe members — Christian Hubicki, Gabby Pascuzzi, Nick Wilsonand Davie Rickenbacker — all voted for Dan, and Carl correctly used the nullifier against him, ensuring he was left completely shocked as his torch was snuffed.

“From my understanding, from talking to people after the game, Carl was wanting to use it and they assumed I had an idol,” Dan explained to HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY. “But they weren’t 100% at that point. They did a good job.” While the Davids took a gamble on using the nullifier, though, Dan had absolutely no hesitations about using his idol at tribal…because Christian actually told him they were targeting him before the vote. “I think it was because him and me were good friends, so he was helping me get mentally prepared,” Dan said. “Even though it didn’t end up preparing me at all for what happened. But I knew to definitely play the idol.”

What Dan didn’t know, though, was that one of his closest allies in the game, Kara Kay, was scheming against him behind his back. Kara didn’t vote for him at tribal, but she was working hard to distance herself from him before he was voted out. “I had no idea at all,” Dan admitted. “But I can’t be mad about it. We were all out there competing. Everyone has to do what’s best for their game. I can’t be mad about it at all. She did what she felt like she needed to do to win $1 million, and we’ll see if it works out for her.”

Looking back, Dan said he wishes he focused more on his social game while playing Survivor, especially with the Davids. “I was so gung-ho on being Goliath strong,” he explained. “I wish I would’ve taken the time to get to know [the Davids] a lot more. I really wish I would’ve taken the time to talk strategy and game with them a lot more. I never took that opportunity because I was just so confident the Goliaths always had the numbers.”