Spoiler alert for Season 2 of Netflix’s The Circle! 

In a stellar season of reality television, we’ve arrived at the end of the road for this run of The Circle on Netflix, and we have a new winner — DeLeesa Unique!

DeLeesa played as her husband, Trevor, and strategically sailed to the finale where she was selected as the winner by her fellow finalists.

In a lengthy conversation right after the finale, DeLeesa sat down with Shadow and Act and broke down her win, the season’s biggest moments, Trevor’s thoughts on her performance and what she hopes to do with the platform that she’s been given.

At what point during the competition, did you think, “OK, I really have this in the bag…I might win this.” Was there a turning point for you where it just clicked like, “I think that I could go all the way?” Because there were some times when people were being suspicious, but I think at a certain time I was just like, ‘”She’s going all the way.” 

DeLeesa: Well, to be honest with you, [for] most of the game up until the time Khat and Mitchell came in, I thought I was doing very well. I didn’t think anybody really was suspicious of me, honestly. I really didn’t think not one time that anybody was looking at me like, ‘Oh, that’s a girl or that’s not Trevor.’ I didn’t feel that, I didn’t get that vibe. Obviously, behind the scenes they did, but maybe they looked at me more as an alliance or somebody that even though I wasn’t necessarily Trevor the character I was playing, there was truth behind it. And they resonated with that. Once Khat and Mitchell came in, that’s when I was like, “Okay, maybe I have a shot at this.” Because up until that point, my only alliance was Chloe. And it wasn’t really actually spoken of. It was just, we have this romance thing going on. That’s my girlfriend, that’s my boyfriend or whatever, unofficially.

So even though we were protecting each other, in the back of my head, I didn’t know if she was protecting Trevor. We never spoke about that. So obviously other people like her and she’s in other alliances, she might be putting them ahead of Trevor. Once Khat and Mitchell came in, I felt like, “All right, I can get them to be in alliance with Trevor.” Me and Khat had great conversations all the time. And with Mitchell, man, he respected the bro code and I respected him for that. So I trusted Mitchell, I trusted Khat, but then that whole thing happened. And then Khat was gone! But we had our strategy, our whole plan on how we can break up River and Courtney and kind of move the numbers in our direction. When we say it’s a roller coaster ride, it really was up and down, up and down. One minute you’re up here and you think like, “Nobody’s going to touch you.” And then the next minute, you’re down. And it’s like, “OK, my plan is not working. What can I do? I got to come up with something else.”

Let’s talk about that main feud of the season between Savannah and Terilisha. I thought either one of them could have gone just because they were basically shooting each other in the foot. But as a player, when you were watching it and when you also were in it, how do you feel like it played out? Did you see both perspectives because you were kind of in the middle of it? Savannah saved Trevor and then it just kind of took a mind of its own and ended being both of their demises in the game. What was it look like for you seeing that play out?

DeLeesa: Oh, my gosh. Being a player in the game actually, I didn’t really know what was going on because I mean, as a guy, nobody was really coming to me and gossiping with me and telling me what was going on. Even when I would ask them, like I would ask Savannah, “Hey, are you okay?” And she gave me like one response and that was it. I didn’t really know. I had an idea like, “Oh, maybe it was because she saved Trevor.” But I didn’t know anything about the girl’s alliance. I didn’t know that they said that they were going to protect each other. I didn’t know that they thought Trevor was a catfish. I didn’t know any of that.

So watching it back, like I felt bad. I’m like, “Oh, my God. I hope I didn’t like sabotage her game because she wound up saving me.” But at the same time, I have to make myself feel better. She came to play and she did what she thought was best for her game at the end of it all, and it wasn’t only because we had that connection that she saved me. It was because she didn’t want to out her alliance. So watching it back, it kind of felt like, “Okay, I feel bad.” But at the same time, she cleared it up for me and then it just …man, that thing spiraled, like so far, it just kept going and going. It went from me, then it went to that whole Terilisha wanted Courtney to go. It’s [was] just super miscommunication. They were constantly throwing jobs at each other. And as a woman it’s like, “Hold up, you’re not going to disrespect me queen because I’m queen too.” [laughs] It just got crazy. So watching it, I was just like this is why I couldn’t go in as a female because I would have been out. It would have probably been me up there with somebody.

And we saw on TV, you went in with your notebook, you had all of your notes. In general, how did you prepare yourself and how’d you also prepare with Trevor heading in? Is there anything specific you did to make sure that you had everything down to a T and wouldn’t mess up on any crucial facts? 

DeLeesa: I’m extremely competitive. And I know once you go in a show like this, they’re going to target you, especially when you’re a catfish. You have a target on your back without you even knowing and you have to work super hard to make sure that you don’t slip up. I studied for at least a week straight with Trevor every night. We would spend a couple hours and he would go over a bunch of guy stuff with me and just stuff that he knows that I should know. I was writing stuff down. He was writing stuff down, he was quizzing me…I was asking him all these questions. “What about this? Would you shop here? Would you wear this cologne?” I had everything.

And then even after that, there’s a time that we have to quarantine before we actually filmed. During that time I was in there studying as well. I’m like, “I need to know all the sports teams. I need to know their color. I need to know what city they’re in.” I was not trying to get tripped up at all. So I put a lot of effort. I felt like I was back in school.  I haven’t been to school in a long time, but I’m putting myself through some type of “edumacation” just now [laughs].

Watching the season, does Trevor think that you portrayed him well or was there any moment where he said, “OK, I would have done this differently or you didn’t sound like me”? What does he think of your performance in this season?

DeLeesa: Oh, my God [laughs] It’s so funny. Me and Trevor are very competitive and we are constantly coming for each other. We’re legit best friends. So watching it, he’s just like, “Why would you say that?” And I’m like, “You wouldn’t say that?” He’s like, “No.” And I’m like, “You’re lying.” And he’s like, “No.” He swears he could do a better job than me. I would liked to see that, honey! [laughs]. It’s not as easy as you think. Watching it, I know everybody sees like … Be like, “Why would they say this? Why would they say that? Why would they say this?” You get in that thing. You get in The Circle and you tell me how it goes. So I’m telling him like, “Go ahead and say what you want to say, but you don’t really know.” And I did an exceptional job, thank you very much!  And you ain’t complaining about this money, honey, so shut up [laughs].

We constantly are throwing jabs at each other. It’s so much fun though. And at the end of all, he’s very proud of me. So even, though he thinks that I was a little bit more feminine than I should have been. He still is very proud of me. And obviously, he’s really excited for everything that’s transpired from the show.

What do you hope to do with your platform you’re going to have now as the winner of The Circle? I know you have a huge presence on YouTube already, but what’s next for you? What do you hope to do with all this fame you’re going to have now from winning this Netflix series?

DeLeesa: So first of all, I’m a mompreneur. That’s my whole thing. I’ve been in sales my whole life, for 16 years or something like that. And I work hard, I bust my ass. I make money because I worked so hard. And once I had my daughter and me Trevor really settled down as a family. I decided that I’m going to put that aside. And I’m going to try to make generational wealth. I want to be able to enjoy my family and I want to be comfortable as well. So with that, I became a stay-at-home mom. I started my online boutique, Be Unique Shoppe. So I get a lot of compliments on my outfits. My lashes, my nails, my dress, everything is on my shop. It’s a one-stop-shop. I wanted to make it very affordable because people like me that want to look cute, but they don’t want to spend that much money.

My other thing is a goodie box and it’s Goodie Box Store. Me and my best friend, she has a son as well, so we’re both mompreneurs and we have curated gift boxes that we send out to people. We put personalized messages in there for Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day, any type of occasion.

I am creative and I work hard and you can’t stop me. Obviously, I have my YouTube channels and I wouldn’t say it’s a huge platform yet. Hopefully, it just continues to grow. I had my YouTube channel since 2017, I think. And then when we got married, me and Trevor, we created a family channel just to showcase our love. People are actually invested in us as a couple, as a Black family. As a young black family, we’ve been together a really long time. So there’s all those trials and tribulations that we’re not afraid to share with the world. And I think it’s just important for us to show our Black family in a positive light. You can get married and stay together and have children and go through these challenges and still stick by each other in the long run.

And I think people can really connect to us as a family and people in general. My personality, his personality, raising our daughter, being married and starting this life, this journey that we’re trying to accomplish. Sorry, I can cry because that’s my whole everything. And then of course, because I have to do something for my baby girl, she is going to have her own set of books. Yeah, I started two books already. I have to get them into publication, very, very soon I will. But it’s for little girls like her, confident and grow up and love who they are, the skin that they’re in and what they embody. So that is going to be coming [out] very, very soon. I don’t stop, when I have an idea in my head, I’m literally like, we’re going to make it come out and make it work. And the world’s going to love it, whether they like it or not.

The above interview has been edited and condensed for clarity, but you can view the full video below: