(This recap covers Noon Friday-Noon Saturday, BB time)
Leading up to the beginning of this shift, a few things happened:
Guess what? Matt is HoH! And you’ll never guess what that means! You’re right! Rachel and Brendon are talking trash about everyone else, and everyone else is talking trash about Rachel and Brendon! There’s just too much of it going on to write all of it down, but I do hope CBS releases a Greatest Verbal Hits DVD at the end of the season. Britney alone could fill Volumes 1 and 2.
- Rachel offered Matt her $5,000 in exchange for safety for her and Brendon, as well as the possibility of working together going forward
- Matt is thinking about taking the money, putting them up anyway, and donating the money to the charity for the disease he fake-gave to his wife. The house is divided on the merits of this plan, in fact even Matt thinks it could be going overboard
- BB has locked Matt out of the HoH for an undisclosed reason (but they and we assume it’s for Pandora’s Box)
- The house is also on lockdown while the usual banging sounds in the BY indicate destruction of the HoH competition set and/or construction of yet another elaborate set for the POV competition
Skippy is a real meanie this year...
Matt gets called to the DR, while Ragan sits with Rachel and Brendon in the Cabana Room. They talk about buses, and the throwing of people under them. Rachel keeps hinting to Ragan that someone is throwing everyone under the bus, but when he asks her directly who it is, she doesn’t say and deflects to other topics like how fake everyone was to her while she was HoH (but not Ragan, the dear). Rachel tells Ragan to watch the shows in September and then he’ll know. Brendon vows not to give his jury vote to someone who throws people under the bus. What a noble steed. Then Rachel proceeds to throw Hayden under a bus by telling Ragan about the 4-person alliance that Hayden and Kristen proposed to them last week before the POV. Goodyear and Bridgestone are missing a great opportunity here; they really should buy some time and make some customized BB ads…imagine a commercial that airs after each eviction showing the losing housemate being run over by a bus, and sporting amazing tire treads on his/her back. It’s money!
As we all know, Britney will do this
tofor anyone, day or night.
Meanwhile in Jumanji, Britney is walking on Lane’s back, trying to work out some kinks. Or maybe it’s a prelude to something kinky. Either way, Lane likes it. Matt returns from the DR and tells them that if he took the $5,000 he would have to honor the deal, so that idea is out. (Nice cover story, Matt; obviously the DR session was about Pandora’s Box.) Lane comes up with a new game to replace the current game of leaving people stranded talking to Brendon. It’s called “Slander” – everyone talks to Rachel and Brendon one-on-one, and talks trash about other people with them. The object is to top each other’s trash-talk in outrageousness. Can you tell that the house considers this week a foregone conclusion already?
Matt decides that if there is a Pandora’s Box in the HoH, he isn’t even going to bother reading the card, he is ripping that sucker open no matter what the consequences. Hmm, what does he already know…
Ragan reports back to Matt about his prior conversation with the doomed couple. Matt is surprised that they didn’t discuss the coming nominations. Ragan figures they just know. Ragan suggests that matt throw in something about sportsmanship in his nom speech, but Matt is thinking about jury votes, and doesn’t want to repeat Rachel’s “Bring it!” mistake.
By the way, whatever time I don’t account for in this recap regarding Rachel, she spent it moping and waiting for the next sympathetic ear to discover her (usually Brendon). And I’m just not going there.
Rachel finds Matt and Ragan and pitches ideas for working together. Ragan offers to go, but Rachel says he can stay since he and Matt are “a pair” anyway. This cause Ragan to go off on Rachel, and they get into a shouting match. Brendon enters like a knight in rusty armor, while Matt tries to calm things down as the entire house holds one ear toward the Cabana Room. The shouting continues until Brendon gets Ragan out of the room, and Matt attempts a calmer chat with Rachel. But then Ragan and Brendon start shouting outside, and Rachel chooses to go defend HER MAN. The exchanges go in all directions and get, well, stupid after a while until apologies are exchanged (in the kitchen where everyone can see) between Rachel and Ragan. Then, Rachel and Brendon walk Matt back to the cabana to have the talk she originally wanted to have, had she not opened her mouth to Ragan in the first place.
They try to convince Matt that he will become the biggest target next week, and that since he’s a winner like them (gag), he would be better of teamed with them to fight off the house. He tells them he thinks it’s smart to keep them in the house for now, because he thinks about the game and not about personal feelings. They talk about final 6/5/4/3 scenarios, while Matt keeps a straight face the whole time. This farce is interrupted by a call to the DR for Matt (ooh, Pandora’s Box?)
Kathy's Special Power: Magically appearing in the HoH bed at any moment
The feeds soon go to trivia, and when they return…yes, Pandora’s Box! Matt not only was informed of it, he has already opened it! He was the only one to see it, as he is telling everyone else about it when the feeds return. It’s still a room made of fake-gold, and he had to read a lot of instructions for the show before he could touch anything. Apparently he was given a “dollar card” and there was a mystery briefcase involved. He says he isn’t allowed to say much more, and that he doesn’t know what’s in store this week because the box was opened. For now, all he got out of it was $1. You can see varying degrees of trust in that statement among the others. Talk turns to last season’s version, where Kevin opened the box, and it turned out well for everyone but him since he was stuck with his hand in the box while they all collected flying money.
While Matt is called to the DR again, Britney, Ragan and Kathy are hanging in the CR, talking catty trash about Rachel and Brendon and exchanging theories about Pandora’s Box. This becomes the running topic of discussion for a while; every time someone is called to the DR (especially Rachel), people buzz and buzz about some special power that hamster is receiving. Who needs the Saboteur, these people overthink anything you put in front of them!
After Rachel emerges from a DR session, Matt dispatches Britney to talk to her and see what she can find out. Matt and Ragan watch from the HoH spycam as Brit casually walks up to Rachel, who still looks forlorn. Brit returns to HQ and reports that they can probably cross her off the list for now. They don’t think America would want to give Rachel something anyway.
More buzz floats through the house and backyard, not only about the Special Power but the fact that the house hadn’t received the usual announcement about nominations yet today, which is odd. But, it turns out that BB was just tardy today, as the TV screen in the living room displays ”Nominations Today” around 5:00PM BT. Around this time, another indoor lockdown is called, and everyone is stuck inside to get even more paranoid about the events to come.
An hour later, the feeds go to trivia once more, and another hour later they return. Did Matt get it right this time, or are Kathy and the sock puppet on the block? Drumroll please…Rachel and Brendon are nominated! We can tell because Rachel is taking her frustration out on some vegetables in the kitchen with a knife. BB is brave to allow her to still use sharp objects at this stage. The way she’s chopping, you’d think a tomato was the guy from The Princess Bride who killed her father.
Rachel and Brendon take their brutalized salad into the Cabana Room for a quiet, depressing dinner. Rachel can only keep it together long enough to throw out another conspiracy theory about who is in a secret alliance. They both repeat several times that they have to won POV. Brendon thinks that Hayden and Enzo will be in their corner; this is because Hayden and Enzo decided to pretend to be in Brendon’s corner the other day in order to keep tabs on him. The Brigade is everywhere, people! Brendon pledges to go home before Rachel if worse comes to worse. Rachel takes her cue and dramatically claims that she can’t do this without him. (Listen for synthesized violins during this scene on the show.) Rachel can’t stop whining about how everyone in the house hates her, and if she wins POV, they’ll hate her even more! I really wonder if she’s not going to regret having come on this show…oh yeah, Brendon’s still in love with her. And she’s still had to fight every day she’s been here.
Meanwhile, the others are making their own merry meal and reviewing the events of the evening at the dining table, especially Rachel’s poor reactions to being placed on the block. The trashy talk gets to a point where even Ragan has reached a limit, and he suggests that they try to take the high road for a while. This lasts about ten seconds, since it is all too easy to point out Rachel’s hypocrisy from all the choice platitudes she recited about her nominations not being personal when she was HoH (Britney and Monet? Really?).
Enzo decides to do some time on Mopey Drive, and finds Rachel to see how she’s doing. He tsk-tsks about her situation, and tries to pep her up with the best case scenario she can think of: She wins POV, Kathy goes up against Brendon and (because of the alleged votes that Enzo and Hayden and maybe even Britney would throw his way) Kathy goes home. Oh, it might also involve giving Matt $5,000 to break a tie in their favor. See? It’ll be EZ-Bake! Oh, and she tells Enzo she’s been fighting since day one.
Thankfully Britney pops her head in at this point and chirps, “It’s Friday night, you guys wanna go out?” I love her, the evil darling. Talk turns to Ragan, who Rachel refuses to make up with (just like Kristin refused to make up with her last week, hmm?), calling him a “little girl” and a “bitch.” Classy.
While Britney takes her turn blowing smoke (and telling Rachel she doesn’t want to blow smoke), Enzo goes up to the HoH for a quick meeting with Matt. They are thinking the Brigade should throw next week’s HoH. Matt figures he will go on the block but stay, and then they can take over for real.
At this point in the Bridgade’s confidence, a look at the Alliance Wheel seems appropriate, since it doesn’t look like things will change between now and tomorrow:
Suddenly (just in time for After Dark), the TV screen in the living starts making familiar sounds, and everyone rushes to the couches to see what fate awaits them. The Saboteur is back! But this time the voice is a little lower in register (well duh, because it’s Ragan’s):
Hello, houseguests…guess who's back! Annie may be gone, but I want to thank you Matt, for opening Pandora's Box and unleashing the new Saboteur into the house! My mission is to destroy you all as I cruise towards the half-million dollars! Watch your back…before I stab you in it!
Not too Sabby!
Stunned silence is followed by 45 minutes of theorizing about who the new Saboteur is, and what’s in it for them. Everyone’s wondering about the money he/she will get, until Ragan interjects that maybe the Saboteur has been given a special power this time. Surprisingly, the others shoot that theory down at face value.
Britney is convinced that Rachel is the new Sab, because America would probably vote to give it to someone whose game they’d want to screw up, and not to someone they liked. (Um, did she watch seasons 10 and 11? Dan and Jeff?) Suddenly they are proclaiming Matt’s HoH ruined, and sympathizing with Chima’s plight last year.
So, lots of people think it’s Rachel, and a couple think it’s Matt or Kathy, or maybe Enzo. But no one suspects Ragan yet…
The night progresses with more theories, moping, comforting, back-biting, working out and the occasional funny (Lane wants to call it America’s Trainwreck instead of America’s Player). Then, once After Dark-time is over, and surprise, so is the lockdown. The hamsters scurry outside to see if there’s another contraption for them to master for the POV. And sure enough, there is…a duckpin bowling alley! (For those who are too young to know, duckpin bowling uses shorter pins and smaller balls with no finger-holes, a la Bocce.)
Instructions are read, and they instantly take turns practicing, trying to knock over the three pins that stand at the end of the lane – except for Rachel, who stands off to the side and sulks and sniffles. Brendon turns out to be pretty good on the lane, but Ragan is exceptional. Brendon is called to the DR so he isn’t out practicing yet, so there is no one who wishes to indulge her latest ploy for attention. Soon Rachel is called to the DR as well, and she stomps inside.
The practice winds down, and Matt heads up to the HoH with Ragan following behind, ready to keep dishing on Rachel’s latest meltdown. Rachel goes from the DR to the Taj room to cry, possibly for real this time. Brendon finds her and asks what’s up. Apparently, Rachel is in hysterics because…she can’t bowl. Oh, and she’s fought so hard since day one. BUT, she adds for the first time, she doesn’t think she has it in her anymore. And so begins a marathon pep talk by Brendon that rivals any speech ever given in a sports or war movie. If you have just under an hour to spare, go to the BB Feed Flashback, Cam 1&2, 1:00AM BBT. He does finally get her to get up, walk outside, and practice, although she gives up again every 10 minutes and requires a fresh pep talk.
Can this co-dependency be saved?
People are getting ready for bed, but some not quite, as the Brigade secretly makes their way up to the HoH for another late night meeting. Lane and Enzo join Matt a little after 2AM, and while they are waiting for Hayden, they do some more Brenchel-bashing, and try to figure out contingencies for the worst case scenario of a Brenchel POV win, or worse, a surprise reveal of a Special Saboteur Power by Rachel.
Rachel, having finished going through the motions for Brendon on the bowling lane, is now so desperate for the kind of sympathy she likes that she is now getting a pep talk from Kathy in the bathroom. The look on Rachel’s face matches the look on most people’s faces when they are the loser in the Brendon game. Britney pops in and lets Rachel know that she and Ragan are laying down in Jumanji if she wants to come hang and talk. Rachel robotically replies that Ragan hates her, which Britney weakly attempts to disagree with, and again makes the offer before scurrying back to Ragan to report the dish. Yes, Ragan does indeed still hate Rachel after all…
While Coach Brendon continues to follow Rachel around pumping her up all night, Hayden finally joins the Brigade in the HoH. They all affirm to each other that none of them are the new Sab. They are split on who they think it is, between Kathy and Rachel. Enzo and Hayden report success on their mission to set up a new fake alliance with Brendon, who fell for it so hard that he’s already convincing Rachel that they are votes in their pocket. Matt and Lane need to keep close to Britney, who seems to be Brendon’s big target (after Matt), which works in their favor even more.
Matt calls the balls during Brigade Bingo
Enzo leaves to go do some more fake bonding with Brenchel while they continue to practice and re-enact scenes from Rudy, The Longest Yard and The Knute Rockne Story. The remaining Brigadiers continue to feed their own paranoia about what the Saboteur and any other twists might do to their game this week. Short of that, they are practically counting the half-million already.
The meeting breaks up, and Enzo says his goodnights to the newly energized Brenchel, and he goes to the Taj Room to retire. Hayden finds him and they keep talking with the lights on. It’s 4AM at this point, and Brenchel are still getting in a final few frames of practice while Haydenzo continue to strategize and daydream about the week’s possibilities. Brenchel joins Haydenzo in Taj around 4:30, and finally, finally, the house is asleep.
In the morning, Rachel is quiet around everyone, which prompts even more Brenchel-bashing from Britney and Lane, in fact it’s getting to be overkill at this point. They need to calm down, it’s going to be a long week no matter what happens in the POV later. At about 9:30AM BBT, the feeds briefly turn to trivia, and upon their return, we find out the following: thanks to winning the Veto Card last week, Ragan is automatically playing in the competition this week, so there are 7 players instead of 6: Matt, Rachel, Brendon and Ragan, accompanied by Enzo, Britney and Kathy. Hayden’s nipples will serve as host.
The rest of the shift is more of the same: strategy, paranoia and Brenchel-bashing. How will the POV (and Ragan) shake up this stale routine that the housemates have gotten themselves into? Find out in the next recap, when TheIrishEyes takes you through the POV and its aftermath.
"I'll Sab you my pretty...and your little dog too!"
Thanks to TheIrishEyes, waywyrd and JustJuls for imagery!