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‘The Circle’: Host Michelle Buteau Thinks Contestants Catfish for ‘Sad’ Reasons: ‘You Are Enough’

Catfish are a vital part of 'The Circle,' but the show's host, Michelle Buteau, thinks contestants choose to catfish for sad reasons. This looks at how contestants can catfish other players in 'The Circle' and what Buteau said about them. It also looks at how the catfish performed in 'The Circle' Season 2.

There were plenty of catfish swimming around in The Circle Season 2, which made things much more interesting. The ability contestants have to play as someone else is a vital component of The Circle, and it’s what makes the hit Netflix series so entertaining. However, despite catfish being such an essential aspect of the show, host Michelle Buteau recently said she thinks some players choose to catfish for “sad” reasons.

[Spoiler alert: Spoilers ahead for the winner of The Circle Season 2.]

Players can catfish on ‘The Circle’

For the past two decades, reality TV fans have watched social experiments like Big Brother and Survivor, where players must try to manipulate each other face-to-face to win. The Circle, on the other hand, is a more modern version of those games, as contestants — who live alone in separate apartments — must only communicate through social media.

Using the show’s social media/texting program, contestants get to know each other one-on-one and in groups. They also participate in competitive activities, which may be challenging for the players who pretend to be other people.

Contestants can either go into the game as catfish, or they can go in as themselves by putting their real information and photos on their profiles. Acting as a completely different person, though, can be difficult at times and can result in getting blocked by the other contestants.

The overall goal is to not get blocked, and to be among the finalists in the end, as finalists receive the opportunity to win the grand prize of $100,000.

Michelle Buteau thinks some contestants catfish for ‘sad’ reasons

Host of The Circle on Netflix Michelle Buteau.
Michelle Buteau on ABC News’ ‘Soul of a Nation.’ | Lorenzo Bevilaqua/ABC via Getty Images

Buteau, a longtime comedian, has become the face and voice of The Circle. Her hilarious one-liners add another layer of comedy to the show.

While discussing The Circle Season 2 in a recent interview with Conan O’Brien, Buteau discussed the sad part about catfishing.

“The reason why people catfish sometimes is so sad; it’s so interesting because a lot of people will say, ‘Well, somebody doesn’t want to really get to know an older person, and I’m in my 50s, so I’m going to play a younger person because that’s who’s on social media,’” she said.

Buteau added that by the end of the show, other contestants wish they could have gotten to know the real person.

“Some people are like, ‘Nobody wants to talk to a person my size, so I’m going to be a skinny person,’ and that’s just so sad,” Buteau said. “So, I think the takeaway is; you are always enough. Whatever you feel like presenting to the world on social media, take ownership, be kind, and you are enough.”

The Circle is definitely a good lesson that it’s OK to be yourself. The season 1 winner, Joey Sasso, proved it, too, as he played the game as his true self.

A catfish won ‘The Circle’ Season 2


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The catfish strategy didn’t work too well in season 1, as the top four contestants all played the game as themselves. Seaburn Williams, a male cast member who pretended to be a 26-year-old female, was the most successful catfish, finishing in fifth place.

In The Circle Season 2, though, there were three catfish in the final five. They consisted of Deleesa St. Agathe, a female who played a male named Trevor; Lee Swift, a 58-year-old male who catfished as a younger male named River; and Jack Atkins and Lisa Delcampo, who previously catfished on their own but later joined forces and played a 60-someting-year-old male named John.

In the end, Deleesa, AKA Trevor, won over two non-catfish, Chloe Veitch, who finished second, and Courtney Revolution, who finished third.

Given Deleesa’s success, there will probably be many more catfish on future seasons of The Circle.

You can watch The Circle Season 2 on Netflix.