‘Survivor 39’ Contestant Jamal Shipman Revealed Dean Kowalski and Karishma Patel’s Unseen Relationship

Known for his wise and powerful words, fans are already missing Jamal Shipman’s voice at Tribal Councils. While he was on the show, viewers questioned the admissions counselor for his decision to give someone a handwritten legacy advantage and play his immunity idol for Noura Salman.

In an interview with Rob Cesternino, Shipman gave more insight into his Island of the Idols experience and explained Dean Kowalski and Karishma Patel’s unseen relationship is what caused him to play an idol for Salman.

Jamal Shipman
Jamal Shipman | Robert Voets

‘Survivor 39’ Jamal Shipman opened up about Island of the Idols experience

On Survivor: Island of the Idols Episode 9, Jamal Shipman went to the Island of the Idols after he took a hanging rolled note. Once he got to the island, he found out he lost his vote for taking the note but had the opportunity to deceive someone else.

After thoughtful consideration, Shipman decided to handwrite a legacy advantage to give to another contestant. He then went back to his beach, gathered his tribe around, and “extended an olive branch” to Dean Kowalski by giving him the fake advantage.

In an interview with Rob Cesternino, Shipman said he was “sad” the viewers didn’t see more of his Island of the Idols experience. The admissions counselor also noted that he didn’t care if it was a dumb test or not because he was happy he got to hang out with Boston Rob Mariano and Sandra Diaz-Twine.

According to Shipman, Mariano gave him an idea to write a letter from one member of an alliance to another discussing a potential blindside or something of the like to stir up distrust.

However, the admissions counselor felt like it was “too elaborate, “and he didn’t know who were in specific alliances. Nonetheless, he wanted to participate because “we’re playing Survivor.”

‘Survivor 39’ Jamal Shipman says Janet Carbin ‘didn’t make the right decision’

So far, Janet Carbin is the only contestant who went to the Island of the Idols and refused Mariano and Diaz-Twine’s offer. While viewers online, and Diaz-Twine, thought it was a smart move on her part, Shipman claimed she “didn’t make the right decision.”

He continued, explaining it’s “ridiculous” that people criticized Elizabeth Beisel for attempting to make fire against Mariano because everyone wants the full experience.

Shipman said he felt like the fake advantage was an “opportunity” to “make a mark” on Survivor and felt like it could have worked, so there was also strategy involved with his decision.

‘Survivor 39’ Jamal Shipman says Dean Kowalski and Karishma Patel were ‘very close’

On Survivor: Island of Idols Episode 7, Kellee Kim wanted to use her idol while it was still valid. Therefore, after finding out everyone planned on unanimously voting out Kowalski, she gave him her idol.

Kim then told the basketball player and Noura Salman to write down Jack Nichting’s name as she felt like he was a threat post-merge. During Tribal Council, Kowalski pulled out his idol, prompting Shipman to unsuccessfully play his idol for Salman.

Shipman explained he played the idol for his ally because he assumed Kowalski found the idol himself and wrote down Salman’s name. Therefore, they would re-vote, and he thought they would eliminate Karishma Patel then.

The admissions counselor explained he was “very suspicious” of Kowalski and Patel because they were extremely close on new Lairo and “very cuddled up that rainy night.” So, he assumed the two were working together and “playing” the tribe.

Watch Survivor: Island of the Idols Wednesdays at 8 p.m. EST on CBS.