The Traitors NZ: What the first banished Traitor Loryn Reynolds did wrong

Warning - this story contains spoilers for episode 2 of The Traitors NZ

The first Traitor has been unmasked and banished from the luxury lodge where Paul Henry is hosting proceedings in the debut season of The Traitors NZ.

Loryn Reynolds was evicted by a majority at the first meeting of the group as they tried to work out who the Traitors were among them.

However, fellow Traitors Matt Heath and Dan Sing managed to avoid suspicion and evade being picked in the final vote.

With an overwhelming majority nominating her to leave, Reynolds was kicked out of the game and denied the chance to play on for the $60,000 prize.

But host Paul Henry told Newshub while Reynolds didn't quite play the game as well as she should - with several contestants noticing she was hanging back from the group - the pressure is immense on the Traitors.

"It is harder for the Traitors. If you are a Faithful, all you have to do is try and spot Traitors. Much harder to be a Traitor and try not to be smart," said Henry.

"You know, they're playing a funny game because they have to act like they're normal. And acting like your normal is bloody hard because almost always when you are acting like a normal, you're behaving in a very abnormal way, so it's so very, very hard."

However, Henry said at this early stage of the game, it was tougher on all of them.

"It was hard for the Faithfuls as well because of course the Traitors were chosen very early in the game. So for people that didn't know Loryn, it was hard to know what normal was for her."

Loryn Reynolds hung back too much, attracting suspicion according to Paul Henry.
Loryn Reynolds hung back too much, attracting suspicion according to Paul Henry. Photo credit: Warner Bros Discovery

For Reynolds, it was a bittersweet exit as prior to the first roundtable meeting, many had begun to suspect hair stylist Robbie Bell was a Traitor and had been voicing concerns she wasn't on their side.

"There is a real herd mentality," Henry said.

"I really shook those people up. You know, they're in that room a lot longer than they appear to be on TV. Those people are being tortured in that room, and they're just looking at a group of people. They know that some of those people in that room will murder them that night or or potentially their job is to murder them that night. So there's an awful lot of pressure on them.

"I suppose I was slightly surprised at the extent to which the herd mentality comes into play. And I think they were surprised as well when they went in there with a perceived idea. Robbie is a good example, with many saying 'I'm going to vote for Robbie tonight'. And then as the roundtable plays out, you know, a seed is thrown in there and before you know it, it starts germinating in more people's minds."

However, Henry believes Reynolds played the game incorrectly and should have been more forceful. Though he admitted to Newshub that could have backfired for her.

"Why didn't she say, 'Hey, guys, honestly, I don't know why it's going this way, but let me tell you, 100 percent, I'm a Faithful'. She never said that. She didn't say at any point 'I'm a Faithful' around the round table, you know. Now, maybe it would have been worse for her if she had, although it can't be much worse than being banished. But maybe it would have been worse for her if she had because, you know, if you sit there and say 'I am not a traitor', the few people that weren't going to vote for you might think, 'Oh, Loryn, she had to say she wasn't a traitor'."

Psychic Kimberley Stewart was the first person to be "murdered" in the game, and Henry wasn't surprised she'd been chosen, given she'd been open about her profession.

"Even if you think that psychic powers are absolutely bullshit, if that person calls you out or calls someone out, there's a little bit more going for their chance to be murdered. So it is likely that more people will gravitate towards voting that person out, banishing that person that they've identified. So it did not surprise me at all that she was murdered."

But Henry also cautioned against ruling out any of the Traitors, saying that professional poker player Dan Sing could be one to go all the way.

"Dan is interesting. Dan doesn't perform like Matt as a Traitor. He's got his own vibe. And of course, the thing is, once you get stuck into your own vibe, if you're a Traitor, you can't change it."

Watch episode two of The Traitors NZ on ThreeNow. The series continues on Mondays and Tuesdays at 7.30pm on Three.