Kendal Sheppard is back for another season of The Challenge: All-Stars, and she’s talking all about episode 3, including her thoughts on the “Tree House” alliance, plus how Wes Bergmann almost convinced her to use her sabotage on a major player!
The Challenge: All-Stars is back and pitting some of the best challengers of all time against one another.
Kendal Darnell (Sheppard) has returned for her third consecutive season and is ready to compete to win the grand prize.
The Challenge champ talked with Benny Adams on Challenge Reality News about episode 3 of All-Stars, including her risky decision to sabotage M.J. Garrett and another plan she had up her sleeve that included Wes Bergmann.
This season was a change for Kendal compared to the past two seasons. Along with some returning faces like Nehemiah Clark and Tina Barta, there was also some new blood joining the game, including Kailah Casillas-Bird and Jordan Wiseley.
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“It was totally different. You’ve got this blend of castmembers where some were older and more seasoned, and you also have these spring chickens that are fit, fast, smart, quick, witty, and hungry.”
Episode 3 introduced the ‘The Tree House’ alliance which consisted of Kailah, Tina, Veronica, Jemmye, Roni, Sylvia, and Derrick. The group wanted to target Kendal and KellyAnne because they saw them as two strong opponents, something that Kendal does not entirely agree with.
“This is where I get conflicted because it’s a nice thought. I am capable, but am I a threat? I just don’t see that. I’m 5’3, and you’re going to say I’m the threat? It just doesn’t feel genuine to me. Just say you don’t know me, I’m not in your alliance and I have to go… I’ve been in the top 6 one time, how are you threatened by that? I don’t like the dishonesty, and it feels very patronizing.”
Kendal revealed she was unaware that the entire alliance was after her but she did have her suspicions when it came to Kailiah and Sylvia due to the lack of communication between them.
“I didn’t have a whole lot of interaction with Kailah and Sylvia which is unfortunate because I admired Sylvia and her grit. I saw her and Melissa competing in an elimination during The Challenge: Vendettas, and it was incredible to watch… I’ve admired her since then. I got a little fan girly whenever both Sylvia and Kailah would come around. They’re the young and cool people, but there was just something in between us.” Said Kendal. “They didn’t show this, but on the bus ride to the challenge I asked them both if I could find a way to not use the sabotage on them in retaliation for them using it on KellyAnne would they be open to getting to know KellyAnne and me, and they said we could do that.”
Before the daily challenge, Kendal had an important decision to make, which was to figure out who she wanted to sabotage. In the end, she chose M.J. but some of her castmates did not agree with her choice.
“By using the sabotage the way that I did, I wanted to bring the women together, I didn’t want to be a threat, I didn’t want to be seen as somebody who’s trying to take you down. I want everybody to do their best and have an equal shot. That was my thought; let’s take the pressure off the women. They’re allowing me to use it on a man so then it can even the playing field for the one guy that has the sabotage on him already and give him somebody else to compete with.” Explained Kendal.“ People have a lot of criticism about that, but I still think it was a good game move. My biggest fault in that plan is that I should have gone to each guy and said this is what I’m thinking; this is how it will benefit you. Could you make sure I stay out of elimination?”
While Kendal’s big move was carefully thought out, that wasn’t her only option on how she could use the sabotage. She also considered using it on Brad and herself, but her biggest plan had to do with a deal she almost made with Wes.
“One of my plans came from Wes. I was stumped, I knew that I wanted to use it on a guy, but I didn’t know how to select the guy. I asked Wes to tell me some things people have done in the past… All of a sudden, he starts giggling and says use it on me because Yes, it going to use it on me, so what if you beat him to it? Then Yes has to choose somebody else, and it’s on him and not you. Right before the challenge, they asked Yes first who he wanted, and I was kind of relieved when they did because I didn’t want to upset Yes, but it would have gotten me out of a hole if I had just put it on, Wes.”
Before Kendal made her decision, Jordan wanted her to give him the sabotage, but Kendal explained that she needed Jordan to perform well.
“Jordan asked why I just didn’t give him the sabotage, and I told him it’s because I need him in there. Jordan was my roommate, and we got along swimmingly. He was one of the few guys that I felt had my back, so I needed him to do well because he could look after me.”
Kendal was right; Jordan did end up looking after her after he made it into the Authority. However, In the end, it wasn’t enough, and Kendal was voted into elimination to go against Veronica. Understandably she was not happy but did want to make something clear about a comment she made regarding the younger All-Stars not realizing the sacrifices the older OG’s have made to participate in the game.
“I saw some comments that said Kendal thinks she deserves it more because she has kids, and that’s not true. I’m just talking about my individual sacrifice, and that weighed heavily on me. I thought if I’m leaving my family for an x amount of time, it better be worth it. If I don’t come home with a check in my hand to get my kids that trampoline that they want, then I failed as a parent. It’s just the pressure I put on myself, not compared to I deserve it more than anybody else. We all deserve to win this game, every single person deserves an opportunity to advance their lives.”
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Due to both Jemmye and Tina having to exit the game, the women’s elimination was canceled, but Kendal isn’t out of the woods just yet.
The Challenge champ now knows that the ‘Tree House’ alliance is after her and fans will have to wait and see how her gameplay will change now that she has this information.
Catch the full interview with Kendal below. Season 3 of The Challenge: All-Stars airs every Wednesday on Paramount+!