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The Traitors winner Cirie Fields reveals what it was REALLY like to film grueling series – from ‘terrible’ food, to agonizingly long days with VERY little sleep – as she shares the sneaky tactic that helped her to victory

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The winner of the first season of The Traitors US has revealed a slew of behind-the-scenes secrets from the hit show – including the gruelingly long days with ‘terrible’ food – and the lengths producers would go to in a bid to keep shield the identity of the traitors.

Hosted by Alan Cumming, the popular Peacock gameshow is currently on its second season with an all-star cast including Real Housewives of Atlanta‘s Phaedra Parks and Survivors star Parvati Shallow.

But as it nears its grand finale, season one winner Cirie Fields spoke exclusively to DailyMail.com to dish the dirt on what it’s really like to take part – and revealed the strategy she adopted to bag the whopping $250,000 prize fund.

‘I thought it was gonna be like a scavenger hunt,’ she said. ‘I thought it was going to be like The Amazing Race because that’s kind of how it was pitched to us. 

The Traitors season one winner Cirie Fields has shared what happens behind-the-scenes of the hit Peacock series

The Traitors season one winner Cirie Fields has shared what happens behind-the-scenes of the hit Peacock series 

The Survivor star became the first ever contestant to win the show in season one

The Survivor star became the first ever contestant to win the show in season one

‘We didn’t know the concept until we were there in Scotland, and that’s when it was explained to us that you could be selected as a traitor, and so on and so forth. And I still was like, sign me!’

Cirie said she quickly adopted her strategy from four seasons of Survivor to help win the show: befriending the first people she comes into contact with. In this case it was Rachel Reilly, Michael Davidson, and Andie Thurman, who she met as she boarded the train to Ardross Castle.

‘We were assigned seats, and so when Rachel and I sat down, guess who was sitting across from us? Michael and Andie,’ she said. ‘From that point, I used my Survivor game strategy.’ 

Each day begins at a big breakfast, where the contestants patiently wait to find out which faithful was murdered overnight by the traitors.

Cirie’s role as a traitor weighed heavy on her throughout the entire filming process, and the daily breakfasts did nothing to soothe her anxiety – and to add insult to injury, the food was for the most part, inedible.

She said: ‘The anxiety of walking into breakfast and having everyone look at you and feeling like “Damn, they know I’m a traitor.”

‘Your mind would play tricks on you, and you’d be so anxious throughout the night sometimes you can’t sleep.’

As for the food, Cirie said: ‘I can’t give the whole of Scotland a bad name on food just because I didn’t really experience Scotland in those terms. 

The first season of the The Traitors US premiered on Peacock in January 2023

The first season of the The Traitors US premiered on Peacock in January 2023

Cirie revealed to DailyMail.com that her gameplay began before she arrived at the castle - and before the game had actually started

Cirie revealed to DailyMail.com that her gameplay began before she arrived at the castle – and before the game had actually started 

The television personality revealed her role as a traitor weighed heavy on her throughout the entire filming process

The television personality revealed her role as a traitor weighed heavy on her throughout the entire filming process

‘But I didn’t have any good dining experiences during my stay.

‘For breakfast, we had a huge charcuterie with some toast, coffee, and orange juice. There weren’t omelets, or pancakes, or bacon, or grits. The one good meal that I remember having was beef cheeks for dinner, it was delicious.

‘Outside of that, the food was terrible.’

She said there was a lot of waiting around for the daily challenges to begin, which gave the players a chance to discuss their theories about who the traitors were – conversations she said were often too repetitive to make the final cut.

‘If it was too cold, we would sit in the bar and go from the library to the bar to the billiards room and really just talk,’ she said. ‘For the most part, we’d be talking about who we thought the traitors were.

Cirie said lots of time was spent hanging around each morning while waiting for the daily challenge

Cirie said lots of time was spent hanging around each morning while waiting for the daily challenge

Cirie beat finalists Quentin Jiles and Andie Vanacore, who placed runners-up, as faithfuls

Cirie beat finalists Quentin Jiles and Andie Vanacore, who placed runners-up, as faithfuls

‘Once the faithful’s got onto a person, every conversation would be about them. You can only take so much of that and put it in the show because it was the same conversation.’

Cirie described the roundtables as ‘so emotionally taxing’ with people ‘breaking down in tears,’ before she revealed how the traitors were escorted to the turret to pick their next victim while the faithful’s were ferried back to their hotel rooms.

‘A lot of times I would be emotional,’ she said. ‘I cried at the roundtable a few times watching the emotions of the others.

‘At the end of the night, we all end up at the bar and would all usually have a little wine, and then one by one our cars would come to take us back to the hotel. Every time you would leave separately.

‘The producers would call somebody’s name, and they would then give everybody hugs and then they would head out, and then the producers would call the next person and so on and so forth.

‘This way no one can vouch for anybody and say, “Oh no, it wasn’t you because you were with me in the car” or “I know it isn’t this person because they rode with me”.

‘Everybody left singularly, and we would leave like we were going to the hotel but then we would make like a little U-turn and head for the turret.’

She revealed how being a traitor was not only exhausting mentally, but physically, owing to the lack of sleep.

Cirie described the roundtables as 'brutal' and said emotions were always heightened

Cirie described the roundtables as ‘brutal’ and said emotions were always heightened

She said: 'You have people breaking down in tears. A lot of times I would be emotional. I cried at the roundtable a few times watching the emotions of the others'

She said: ‘You have people breaking down in tears. A lot of times I would be emotional. I cried at the roundtable a few times watching the emotions of the others’

‘By the time we finished in general it would be around midnight, and then everyone would leave to go to their hotels,’ she said.

‘We, the traitors, would go to the turret, so we wouldn’t get back to our hotels to damn near like two o’clock in the morning.

‘We were exhausted because the call time is typically around 9am each morning.’

Cirie revealed that the players are put up in a basic hotel, which is situated right across from Inverness airport – a far cry from the scenic Ardross Castle where the show is set.

‘If you look on maps, there’s nothing nearby,’ she quipped, before divulging details on the amenities and how the contestants were able to keep themselves entertained during downtime.

‘We had a bed, we had showers, we had room service,’ Cirie shared.

‘We had television to a limited degree. They gave us a little fire stick that they had programmed, so this was luxury compared to what I was used to on other shows.’

Turning her attention to how she navigated the game as a traitor, Cirie insisted: ‘I never chose anybody.

Cirie explained how the traitors sneak their way to the turret without catching the attention of their rival faithfuls

Cirie explained how the traitors sneak their way to the turret without catching the attention of their rival faithfuls 

‘I wasn’t looking for victims, or looking for people I could manipulate.

‘My friendships are real friendships and they’re palpable, and people trust me, and that’s what helped me in the game.

‘Honest to God, the only lie I had to tell was that I’m not a faithful.’

Reflecting on the series, Cirie said: ‘Whenever I look in hindsight, I always think damn, that was a lot of fun.

‘I would say to anybody playing these games, try as hard as you can to allow yourself to enjoy it and have fun during it.

‘Because I was a traitor and I didn’t want to be banished, I didn’t really relax.’

She also pointed out that being a traitor really isn’t a walk in the park, despite what it might look like to viewers at home.

‘It’s not that easy, especially when things play on your conscience,’ she said. ‘Your anxiety is increased, multiplied, and magnified to the thousandth degree.’

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