The Traitors actor Paul Gorton has responded to claims that he ‘used his own child’ to manipulate and deceive his way past the Faithfuls’ suspicions.
After a blazing betrayal, the 36-year-old business manager became the next expelled player, leaving two Traitors remaining.
He’d piqued fans’ interest days earlier, following some amazing gameplay and some fairly emotional moments, including one in which Paul fell into tears at the roundtable and stated he was ready to be voted out because he missed his child.
Viewers called Paul ‘evil’ for using his own child to deceive the Faithfuls with ‘fake tears’ at the time, and while fellow Traitor Ash Bibi backed him, he has now spoken out about the painful incident.
‘To be honest, if you ever ask about it I’ve only got one genuine answer, and that is, literally I was upset,’ he said.
‘But then, what do I do? Do I say that I’m upset because I’m a Traitor and I’m finding this difficult? I had no choice, the cry is there, tears are coming out of my eyes and I can’t stop, so I have to try and use it.
‘The aim of The Traitors and being a Traitor is to manipulate and lie and get yourself through the game and not get caught, so whatever you’re going through at the time, whether it’s happiness or sadness, you have to use it to your advantage.’
He went on: ‘It was what happened – boys can cry, I have absolutely no shame in that, on a more serious note, if more fellas expressed those kinds of feelings to people then maybe we’d be in a bit of a different place when it comes to men’s mental health, maybe, so I’m happy about it, and I don’t need to defend it, a man can cry, it’s okay.’
Talking about the accusations online of him using his own child to manipulate the Faithful, Paul went on: ‘To be honest, the way I see it, people have thoughts and feelings and they’re so involved in the game, and it’s so funny that the bits of me where I’ve been my most genuine self is what people thought, “He was acting and he’s using that,” but I think most people have seen that that is a genuinely upset man.
‘Parents out there, they’ll obviously connect with it a lot more because, my son was 18 months old, and not only do I miss him, but my partner has to just look after him every day and family are there to support but it’s a very emotional thing and it’s the longest period of time I’ve been away from him.
‘So no, he wasn’t used, that did come out, it was a genuine expression. Afterwards, I just needed to recover and try and make it so that I didn’t give the game away.’
That tense roundtable saw Paul save himself from exile after an especially rough day in the dungeons.
Recalling that challenge, he told us: ‘I was in the dungeon all day, it is dark, it is cold.’
Paul went on: ‘We got emotional, when you’re spending so much time you telling family stories and talking about your home life, so I got a bit upset and felt a cry in my stomach ready to come, and then you’re marched out of the dungeon straight to the round table.
‘Everyone’s staring at you, it’s so intense you can hear a pin drop, and you sit there and immediately get called out, “You’re a Traitor, you’re this.” Oh my god!
‘So I got emotional at that table, I found it so difficult.’
Paul elsewhere admitted he was ‘relieved’ to be banished, despite The Traitors being ‘the most amazing thing that I’ve ever done in my life’.
‘It was just so far beyond what your expectations would be, it’s the greatest thing I’ve ever done,’ he said.
‘Every episode, I feel like I’m watching a film. I laugh my head off, I cry, it’s the best thing I’ve ever watched.’
However, he added: ‘I was getting more and more overwhelmed as the show was going on, as I’m trying to keep up the character and play the game, and be dastardly and all that type of stuff.
‘I couldn’t do it anymore, I found it so difficult. So when I went, it was like a relief.’
Despite his relief, Paul confessed he was ‘blindsided’ by Harry’s treachery, as the fellow Traitor turned on him at the last minute and voted him out.
‘I had no idea that Harry was going to do that,’ Paul admitted, saying that he had sensed the vote was coming after feeling a sense of ‘disconnect’ that day from the other players.
Nonetheless, he supports Harry to win the game despite the Traitor having’seeds put’ in him by a misguided Faithful, according to Paul.
‘When he heard that I’m planting seeds of him, he has to go for me.
‘At that point, it’s dog eat dog, so when he did do it, I was fine with it.
‘There was not one part of me that was going to throw him under the bus. I never thought about that for a second.
‘All I thought was that this is my time. I’m going to play with people a little bit more and keep the emotion and try and line them up to that big kind of crescendo moment.’
‘It was just the best banishment,’ he added.
Despite his defeat and Harry’s last ‘nail in the coffin’, Paul has no regrets about the game and admits he ‘wouldn’t have altered anything’ about the strategy the duo devised together.
‘The Faithfuls have underestimated him,’ Paul warned. ‘He’s the best Traitor that’s every existed.’
The Traitors continues tonight at 9pm on BBC One and iPlayer.