All eyes are on the Recapper Wheel of Destiny as the ball ricochets along the track, closing in on the “S” names. Will spegs be writing her next recap on Big Brother? Will Shazzer? There is a hushed silence as it slows and quietly bounces into a slot. The assembled crowd gasps and begins to mutter their concerns. The curtain rustles and Stargazer stumbles out onto the stage. Blinking, she shields her eyes from the stage lights and clears her throat in embarrassment.
“Um…I’ve never watched Big Brother.”
Yes, readers, I’m afraid that’s right. I have never seen an entire episode of Big Brother. Please don’t think I find it beneath me, as I’ve been an avid watcher of such winning shows as “Paradise Hotel” and “Forever Eden”. I’ve just never watched more than five or ten minutes of a Big Brother episode. I just had too many other cheesy shows to schedule around.
So, I ask you in advance for your understanding of my total ignorance in how the game of Big Brother is played. I don’t know how they eliminate people, I don’t know common strategies, and I have no idea if they even have alliances. So, bear with me. Just try to think of it as a fresh new look at your favorite show.
Though beneficial to me, the recapping by the disturbingly expressionless Julie Chen (step away from the Botox, woman!) is no doubt tedious to those of you that have been watching. The only significant thing worth noting is that in addition to the long-lost siblings that have found each other, Big Brother also planted identical twins posing as one person in the house. Rather than go over the rest of prior happenings with you, I’ll direct you to the recap of the always hilarious Amanda to get up to speed with the previous episode.
It Takes A Lot Of Hairspray to Be the Puppet Master
The show begins with the “Four Horsemen” doing some male-bonding through power lifting. It apparently takes three of them to spot the lone lifter because they all stand close at hand, preening for one another and looking important. In a diary room moment, we learn that Jase does indeed think he’s important as he explains his role as puppet-master of the group. I missed his exact words being that I was totally distracted by the giant bandana that seemed to be fighting a losing battle against the equally giant wall of hair springing forth from his head. The gist of it, however, was that now that he was the Head of Household, his tricky puppetry would be set into motion.
Sometime after leaving his bodybuilding buddies, Michael is seen talking strategy with his new found sister, Jennifer. In the diary room, he mentions that Jennifer and the “Horsemen” have done well at scratching each other’s backs thus far and hopes it continues. They chat briefly about how difficult the game is and Michael stresses that they have to act like it’s no big deal that they’ve found each other after a lifetime apart. At first, I think this rationale is flawed until I consider the fact that I’d sell my own sister out for a half million dollars and I’ve known her for 28 years.
The other housemates seem more worried about the sibling bonds, however. I’m guessing their sister never put two large dents in their head with a baton, but I digress. The roommates do have their concerns. Marvin claims that it wouldn’t be fair for him to have his own brother there and feels she should be voted out for her familial bonds. Will wants her out too, but for a different reason. He actually thinks that Jennifer’s bond with Michael hasn’t caused a drastic shift in her strategy, but that Michael’s feelings toward Jennifer gives her the opportunity for a powerful swing vote.
In the kitchen, we see Holly fixing a cheese sandwich for Jase. How do I know it’s for Jase? Well, she seems to have written his name in mustard or cheese on the plate. She then turns to her housemate and giggles in a very, “nails on a chalkboard” kind of way. I cringe as she takes the sandwich out to Jase, already not wanting to know what will transpire between them. She arrives, baby-talk ensues. Then, in one of the most revolting scenes I’ve ever witnessed, she is laying on his lap on the couch, feeding him his food. As they pretend he's a baby bird. Yeah. After convulsive vomiting subsides, I tune in long enough for Lori to state the very obvious fact that they are annoying and loony. She says she doesn’t know if it’s a relationship or an alliance, but she’s leery of it regardless. Yeah, I don’t blame her. The very thought that the two could one day procreate is reason enough to force them to part ways. From a purely evolutionary standpoint, it’s astounding they made it out of childhood.
As we leave the atrocious couple and their odd mating ritual, we catch up with Mike, who is scrambling to get his head off the chopping block. As any rational human being would deduce, he has realized that Jase and Scott have taken complete control of the game. He turns to Lori and Will to try to persuade them that Scott, Jase, and anyone associated with their alliance should be targeted next. The two lay sunbathing as they listen to his very logical arguments as to why he should be kept around longer. He notes that they need to keep the numbers outside the Four Horseman + Jennifer Alliance strong so that they can break it up while they still have time. Failing to grasp the concept (which I figured out five minutes into the show), the two grunt noncommittally and go back to their lounging. I’m really starting to question if any of these people have a survival instinct.
Seeing that his pleas were falling on deaf ears, Mike goes into the house where he runs into Drew. With Drew, Mike once again tries the logical approach. He once again explains the danger that Jase and Scott pose to all of them as Drew’s eyes begin to glaze over. Mikes really just needs to start offering tasty snacks or something. I think he’d get further. As it is, the logic causes Drew’s chiseled visage to furrow in concentration. You see the wheels turning in his head. Does he follow the large, older man that uses the big words that are starting to make sense? Or should continue to do as the other pretty boys advise him? His mind wrestling with the difficult question, Drew admits it would be nice to keep Mike around awhile just to learn from, but doesn’t seem willing to take the chance at upsetting his alliance-mates. Mike decides that he’s done all he’s going to do because he doesn’t want to sacrifice his dignity to try and stay longer.
Inane Questions From Julie Chen
Next we are transported once again to the studio where Julie Chen is standing by to hold court with the Big Brother residents. They join her via satellite for a quick question and answer session.
Q-“Michael…, how do you feel about your sister possible leaving the house tonight?”
A-“Well Julie, it’s a hard situation …but we’ve talked this week and there is always outside the Big Brother house and this was a great opportunity for both of us. She wanted an older brother; I wanted a younger sister, so here we are.”
Q-“Lori, you took the $10, 000 and forced the whole house on PB and J for a week. Marvin was so happy about that. Any regrets about that decision?
A-“I have a little regret at the beginning, but everyone here is supportive.”
Q-“Scott, is it my imagination or do the guys seem a little more high maintenance than the girls?”
A-“The women look fine tonight so we had to step it up a notch. So, yes, we are a little bit more high-maintenance.”
After the questions have ended, Julie Chen reminds us that Mike and Jennifer are both up for eviction. Neither of the nominees are allowed to vote, nor is the current Head of Household (Jase). Ms. Chen directs us to the Diary Room footage so that we can see some of the remaining houseguest’s comments as they cast their votes.
Scott-Says Mike is too much of a threat and he doesn’t see any reason to keep him.
Lori-Notes that Mike is a strong player, is very intelligent, and is pushing to have Jase or Scott eliminated.
Holly-Says that Mike knows the game and he’s a threat to everyone in the house.
Marvin-Feels that Jennifer is too “cagey”. Thinks that something “aint right” with her.
The Ties That Bind
Ms. Chen next reminds us once again that Michael and Jennifer are brother and sister. They share the same father, but Michael has never met him. The parents of Michael and Jennifer only found out a few days before the show aired that their dirty laundry was about to be aired before the entire nation. So, to aid in their privacy, Big Brother elected to send a camera crew to record their reactions.
We find Michael and Jennifer’s Dad in the great state of Tennessee. An old hippy/biker dude, he is sporting a full-length beard and ponytail. He has never known about Michael, but has always wanted a son. He thanks Big Brother for bringing them all together.
Meanwhile in Okalahoma (why does that phrase make me giggle?), Michael’s mother is busy telling her feelings on the subject. She thought it was amazing to see Michael find out his father. When she was dating “Guy”, she said that he was adamant that he didn’t want to have a child that would grow up and go to war. She also mentions that she as happy to see that Michael was questioning Jennifer rather than shocking her with the news when he figured it out.
Guy watches tearfully as Michael learns more about him. He points out the family resemblance between the siblings and the similar behavior of the two. He expresses the wish that Michael will want to extend the relationship beyond the TV show after he returns.
Back to the Studio
Julie takes us next to comments from four more of the contestants as they cast their votes for elimination.
Karen-Thinks Jennifer’s uniqueness could hurt her in the eliminations. Mentions her tattoos and nipple piercings in a disgusted manner. Thinks Mike can be belligerent and opinionated.
Adria-Sees the positive more than the negative. Won’t knock someone for looking different.
Drew-Feels that Mike is the father figure in the house and someone he likes having around. Jennifer looks different but is a cool girl.
Calling the oddly-coiffed Jase on the satellite feed, Julie starts asking him questions about his opportunity as the first Head of Household. She wants to know why he only told the Four Horseman about his secret surveillance equipment and he explains that he isn’t planning on telling anyone that he know about it. If Jase really thinks that anyone will believe that he didn’t notice the giant monitors in his room, I’m guessing too much hair gel has seeped into his head. He claims that everything he does now it to build trust and he feels he’s doing a good job of it.
Back in the Diary room, several more competitors offer their own thoughts on the elimination.
Michael-Thinks Mike has a lot of heart, but is a definite player in the game. Says it would be hard to vote Jennifer off yet. Says that he’s known his fiancée longer than Jennifer, so if she has to go, she has to go. That there is always time outside of Big Brother.
Will- Thinks Mike is a shrewd and “strategical” player, and would be someone you would want to align with. Thinks that he is a silent but deadly player that is great at observing.
Diane-Calls Mike a great guy that she would love to see stay in the game because she knows he’d stand by her.
Next, the nominees are asked to say a few final words before the results are revealed. Mike doesn’t know what to say other than that he loves everyone. Jennifer is also a woman of few words, and merely repeats the world love mantra and says it’s been an awesome experience. Without further hesitation, Julie reminds them that she will read the results and the evicted member will only have one minute to say their goodbyes and leave the house for good.
Not surprisingly, Mike is voted out unanimously. My own theory was the hard-bodied man-candies walking around had decided that Mike’s receding hairline and expanding 41-year-old body might be contagious and they weren’t taking any chances. Mike leaves with only a passing comment that someone could have sent a vote his way. He hugs everyone and hurries over to chat with Ms. Chen. While he’s getting seated, the cameras stay on the housemates long enough to show that live TV is sometimes just boring. The housemates mutter congratulations and high-five until the cameras finally return to Ms. Chen’s interview.
Q- “You were a big fan of the show and had plenty of time to work out a strategy. Why do you think you were the first person voted out of Big Brother 5?”
A-“It was a serious of misunderstandings between Jase and I…I saw them as competition and wanted them out.”
Q- “You didn’t appear to try to swing any votes in your favor (um, did she watch the same show I watched?).”
A-“The days are a lot longer and harder than they look in there, so I was missing my family and my job and everything. I’m kind of glad to be going out first.”
Q-“Were you mad about that [not getting any vote]?”
A- “No, they needed to protect themselves and that’s alright.”
Q-“Are you surprised to be here?”
A-“No, to be honest, my heart wasn’t in it after I found out how hard it actually was.”
The segment wraps up with some cheerful messages from his housemates about why they needed to cut him loose. They called him a “father figure” and a strong player. Scott tells Mike that he realizes that Mike is a good player and that’s why he had to go. Mike comments to Julie that he feels the Four Horseman is a very strong alliance and should have been broken up.
Head of Household Competition
For this week’s competition to name a new Head of Household, the guests are placed in separate booths. Ms. Chen explains that it is called, “Majority Rules” and that she will be asking them a series of questions about other houseguests. They are supposed to answer what they feel the majority of the houseguests will say. The houseguests who answer with the majority will advance. Those who do not will be eliminated. Last player remaining will be the new Head of Household.
After a series of fluffy questions about who fixes their hair more and who would give better mouth-to-mouth, the final competitors tie several times. They decided to do an old fashioned tie-breaker question:
"What is the total number of yellow food balls grabbed by all 12 House guests during the opening food spiral game?"
The closest to the correct number of “100” is Marvin, who is named the new HoH.
As we’ve been promised throughout the episode, Julie Chen illuminates us on the “twin” scenario. She explains that one of the guests has an identical twin that has also been playing the Big Brother game. They’ve switched off several times already this season. She says that if the twins can escape detection or elimination until halfway through, then they will have earned the privilege of both of them being invited in the house to play as individuals. Until then, the twins have to switch places secretly in the Diary Room. The must live at all times under the same conditions that those in the house must endure, including isolation and peanut butter sandwiches.
After discovering early on that Drew and Diane had identical twins, the guests began to speculate about a “twin-twist”. They are shown offering their ideas and theories on the subject, but no one has figured it out yet. Spookily, the bizarre Holly hits closest to the twist when she tells Michael that she is actually there with a twin but no one knows. Thank goodness we are spared the hell that would be inherent in more than one Holly, as we are shown the true twins, Adria and Natalie.
The two ladies have been switching out as “Adria” since the game began. They only have 15 minutes each time to change clothes, rings, and readjust their hair before one must return to the house. They narrow it down to the top five situations and try to share as much of that information as possible. Natalie expresses her difficulties with not wearing her own wedding ring and seeing her sister’s picture on the wall instead of her own.
Julie Chen interviews Adria briefly before the girls switch again. Adria reiterates that the toughest part is not being able to be herself. She explains a few close calls that the girls have had and says that her heart is in her throat every time a switch is made. She thinks that Natalie and her are very well in tuned and that’s why they’ve been able to pull it off for so long. Julie Chen mentions that the girls have been give their 15 minutes earlier, so they will only have a moment to change out so that the audience can see it happen live. We see the girls side-by-side for just a moment as they switch rings and give each other a kiss, and then Adria returns to the other House Guests.
Thank you so much for joining me for my very first episode of Big Brother. I see that the Wheel of Destiny has once again turned and your recapper for the next episode will be the wonderfully gifted Paulie. An expert on all things Reality TV, I’m sure he will be a more than competent guide for your continued journey into this season of Big Brother. I’ll be seeing you later on this season.
Am I the good twin or the evil twin? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org