The days drag on in the Big Brother house. Foosball lost it’s appeal weeks ago, the pool is too small to swim a lap and the coasters have been tossed ad nauseum. Some houseguests face down the boredom by chattering their way through the day with whomever they happen to share space with. Others cheat at solitaire. Still others meet behind closed doors to discuss their chances of being in the final two.
What’s Happened This Week?
A whole lot of talking. There were no extra competitions, no ceremonies to film. No one got drunk and screamed about gold-digging whores. People had the usual complaints about each other, but played nice in public.
Strategy-wise, Maggie and April continued to look at Ivette with suspicion. Conversely, April admitted to Maggie and Ivette that Howie took her aside and told her he was going to go off on her to shake up the house before his big “Busto” blowup - a conversation I definitely missed, or it happened before the feeds went live that day. April says she never felt threatened, and her easygoing way with Howie all week is at least a little more explainable. After she left, Maggie and Ivette proceeded to tear April apart. All these “friends” need a good dose of trash talk every night or they just can’t get to sleep. Luckily, there’s always someone around to hate.
Maggie had two revelations this week, only one of which was shown on Thursday’s show. Yes, as we saw, she’s figured out that James needs a Sovereign next to him in the finals if he wants to win. She also had an epiphany about Ivette - that she might actually take Beau to the finals over Maggie. I don’t know what kind of game Maggie is playing, but if she’s just now realizing that Beau and Ivette are a pair, then she shouldn’t have made it this far in the game.
Janelle and James started a secret alliance, promising to take each other to the final two. James is the one putting pressure on Janelle, reminding her she can’t win against Howie. It’s not clear that she would win against James either, but they both know she wouldn’t win many jury votes sitting next to a “friend.”
April and Ivette continued to snipe at each other over trivial things such as who wiped their greasy paws on which towel. Maggie and Ivette have been sourpusses, especially at dinnertime, either by implying that Rachel ate more than her share or by flat-out saying they won’t cook for anyone but themselves. April has been more friendly with the other side, which was puzzling until we heard April talk about knowing Hurricane Howie was scheduled to hit land. In one instance, Maggie came out from the diary room to find everyone eating at the dinner table. Howie welcomed her over, but she sourly asked him if he had left her any food. April cleared her throat and said that she had done the cooking, so ask her, not Howie. Such a supportive group, those “friends.”
Janelle mentioned having an argument with Executive Producer Arnold Shapiro - “that ass**** Arnie”, as she terms him - but the fishtanks slammed in place before she could finish her sentence. Maybe that’s why the feeds were blocked during her entire tenure as HOH, or why she didn’t get an HOH blog, nor a camera for HOH pictures.
BB threw the group a few quarters, and they won a few things for the house: a BBQ grill and a blow-up volleyball set for the pool. James won origami papers, and is surprisingly skilled at making little penguins and swans. His shrine to Sarah looks adorable, unlike the creepy voodoo going on up in the HOH.
Still, everyone likes a little summer BBQ, so they celebrate the new grill with a cookout. At least this group knows you don’t cook a steak for two-and-a-half hours, like Cowboy did, and they all enjoy charring meat in various forms - except for vegetarian Maggie, who complains about the smell. Anyone who has smelled broccoli cooking knows that it ain’t pretty either; but you don’t hear the house complaining when Maggie cooks up her goulash-ey concoctions.
The Bony Fist of Power
April may have acted like she was pleasantly surprised by her win, but she wasted no time exercising her powers. She reminded Howie of his threat? promise? to streak through the backyard if he wasn’t evicted. All secret-like she pulled Maggie in the storage room, and they compared notes: they want to backdoor James. April tells Maggie that before Rachel left, she told her that James had told her he would put up Maggie and April if he won HOH. Maggie wants to know if there was any mention of Ivette or Beau, but April is clear - only the two of them. Maggie says she knew it. And that now she’s wondering even more how James knew they were going to vote out Rachel last week. They agree that James is too influential over Ivette, and that he has to go this week while there’s still a chance to backdoor him. They discuss how they should sell the idea to Ivette later that night in the HOH room.
On the surface, the hamsters are preparing and eating dinner. But for every friendly conversation in public, there’s rapid-fire ranting by the “friendship” in private. Ivette was trading jokes with Howie and Janelle over dinner, but wastes no time in trashing Janelle the minute she get April and Maggie away from the table. Ivette is only happy when she’s got someone to hate, and this week, it’s Janelle. She rags on her for being a good competitor, for having gained weight, and for wearing hair extensions. It doesn’t help that despite her ragged edges, Janelle still out-glamours the rest of the females in the house. Ivette says that Janelle said Maggie actually won HOH twice because Maggie convinced Howie to put up two of their own during his week as HOH. She’s furious at this, and says that she wants Janelle out this week. Maggie and April quickly see through this Janellousy to Ivette’s true motivation - to plug her favorite, James. Maggie tells her to drop it, they will hash it out later in the HOH room.
April gets Howie and Janelle alone in the gold room to tell them they’ve got a free week, as long as they cooperate. She will put up Howie and Janelle as pawns, and whoever wins the veto competition will use it to make space for the elusive James. April tells them not to get frazzled, they will be fine this week...as long as they don’t ask James to play for them to win the veto. Janelle and Howie are huddled under the covers during this conversation. They really couldn’t look more resigned or dejected if they tried.
After April leaves, Janelle tells Howie that they really don’t have a choice but to take the deal. They will play for veto and work hard to save themselves. Next week, Janelle thinks she can win HOH and then turn April against Ivette.
April gets her HOH room, complete with a picture of her husband Matt, a fancy robe and Ugh boots. April excitedly cries out that she LOVES Matt over and over as the hamsters check out her goodies. Howie offers to sleep next to her to keep her safe; April retorts that he can sleep in the bathroom. Janelle is being especially girly with April, cooing over the robe and boots; April even tells Janelle that she’s sorry she beat her. The shrine is reassembled and arranged for the “friendship” to worship in their private nightly rites.
Actually, they do have nightly rites - to hash out the game and trash the other side of the house. When the four of them do meet in private, they discuss April’s nominations. As expected, Ivette campaigns heavily to keep James and evict Janelle. America got a teensy weensy taste of Ivette in one of her rants o’hatred on tonight’s show during Rachel’s goodbye message; this week, it’s clear her new target is Janelle. She repeats all her earlier complaints about Janelle: she’s gained weight, she can win competitions, she has fake hair. But, counters April, we know exactly where she stands. James is not so clear-cut; in fact, the only person in the room he benefits is Ivette. April says that she has information that James was plotting against them last week, and Ivette wants April to tell her who said exactly what. April stays close-mouthed about what piece of info convinced her, but admits it was Rachel. Ivette scoffs and is offended that April would believe Rachel over her. Ivette continues to insist that she has never given James any info; everyone treats it like a statement they all know is a lie but need to pretend to believe to keep Ivette from going ballistic. The “friendship” consists of people tip-toeing around a variety of explosive personalities.
April does add one new piece of info to the discussion. When the veto competition is played, she wants the winner to remove Janelle from the block. Maggie says sagely that it’s the HOH’s choice, but Ivette wants to know why? April doesn’t give her an answer.
As I sign off for the night, the hamsters were rehashing the night Janelle got into a drunken screaming fest with Beau. At first it’s all for laughs, but Maggie finds it hard to laugh off Janelle’s comments toward her because she kept them up the next day - when Janelle was stone cold sober. In case you missed it, Janelle paid Rachel a compliment, then turned to Maggie and told her in a sweet voice to go [bleep] herself. Maggie asks Janelle why she said that, and Janelle replies that it was because Maggie had a smile on her face. Maggie escapes with Beau upstairs to the HOH not long after, and turning on the spy screen, they watch Janelle and trash her to her back for longer than I can stay awake to watch.