As we saw on Sunday, the master plan didn’t quite go the way that the Dark Moon alliance wanted it to. Liz managed to pull off a BoB win basically on her own-no thanks to Clay and Becky’s abysmal performance. And now Vanessa is the remaining HoH, tasked with backdooring the person who, until a few days ago, was one of her closest allies. She is not happy, and neither is anyone else in the know about this plan. Jackie is once again a common peasant, and Clay and Becky are still on the block, wondering what the hell they’d agreed to when they’d allowed themselves to be talked into going on the block.
John is sympathetic to Clay when he complains about being on the block, but in the Diary Room, he’s much more sarcastic, just the way we like him. Imagine being on the block four times in a row and told to throw the BoB twice and asked not to use the Veto once! Clay’s got it so tough.
Meanwhile, Liz is pretty sure that James threw the challenge, since she completed the whole thing by herself. When she tells Austin about it, he starts freaking out about it too. Everyone has been so quiet since the challenge, and James definitely wasn’t happy to have won. Austin now wonders who the real target was, if James really did throw the challenge. Maybe it was Liz, he reasons. Well, he needs to get to the bottom of things. He goes to Vanessa and questions her about what went down and asks her why everyone has been so quiet since the challenge. I worried that Vanessa wouldn’t be able to lie to his face, but she proved me wrong. She reasons that everyone is quiet because Clay and Becky are still on the block. He seems to buy it for now, but asks her to talk to Liz, because she’s really upset about the challenge.
She doesn’t seem too upset, though, when she and Austin are flirting and cuddling in bed. She tells us that Austin is her bestie, but she doesn’t have any romantic feelings for him. He clearly isn’t in on this fact though. He continues to nuzzle against her, and every time he gets too close, she manages to squirm away from him a little, but in a very flirtatious way so that he thinks she’s just playing hard to get. He does manage to slip in and give her a surprise kiss, and their DR reactions are vastly different. She says she wasn’t into it at all. He thinks it was the most amazing moment ever, and he’s sure that she’d felt the same way. Now, I have to wonder how much of what she’s telling us in the DR is true. On the one hand, she did squirm away from him and even distracted him once by questioning something that was on the wall, as if she’d never noticed the picture before. But on the other hand, if she really didn’t like him and wanted to avoid his advances, why get into bed with him at all? She can only pull these moves so many times before he starts to wonder why he can never actually get any.
Thankfully, we’re pulled away from that awkward scene to pick players for the POV competition! Vanessa gets house guest’s choice (which has seemed to come up a lot more often this year than in previous years) and picks Shelli. Austin looks pissed that she didn’t pick him. Clay picks John, who laments that being picked to play in the Veto competition again is like getting called into work on your day off. And Becky picks Liz, which worries Vanessa, since, if Liz wins, she might keep the nominees the same which I don’t agree with at all. As far as Liz knows, she and Clay are in the same alliance, so why wouldn’t she pull him off the block if she won?
On a side note, Steve is weird, but so adorable. After a month in the house, he now seems to notice the cameras following him wherever he goes. He tests out his theory, moving all around the camera, and he’s so excited when it continues to turn towards him. There is no way this guy is going to last that much longer in the house, but I’m going to enjoy every moment until he’s gone.
Competition time! I didn’t catch the name of it, but the players all come out dressed as squirrels (Clay seems to be quite turned on by the sight of Shelli in costume-closeted furry, perhaps?), and the object of the game is to roll their ball up across a ramp and catch it before it comes down on the other side. The first squirrel to catch 250 “acorns” wins. But if ever they drop one, they go back to zero and have to start again.
This is another recycled competition, but what else is new. This is only my fourth season watching the show, and even I’m getting tired of some of the repetition. Makes me wonder how people who have been watching from the beginning feel about these challenges.
Anyway, the only person who seems to have any grasp on this challenge is Clay, all thanks to his football playing, he surmises for about the hundredth time. John and Becky look like they’re gaining on him for a while there, but then Becky drops her acorn, and it’s all downhill from there for her. Everyone can see her getting more and more frustrated as the competition continues, and Steve is enjoying every second of it. This is a side of Steve we’ve never seen before! He relishes in her misery the way most of us love to see some house guests fail. I’ve never heard him say a single negative thing about Becky though, so his reaction surprised me and made me laugh. I love this guy. I wish he’d actually play the game and make it through.
Clay wins the competition by a mile. It’s not even close. And while he and Shelli go celebrate, Becky breaks down in the Have Not room. She feels like she should have won because she’s a runner. Except that you don’t usually have to catch things while running. For once, I do believe that Clay’s football training has come in handy. Not only does he have to run, but he’s got to actually catch flying balls. I think. I have no idea what his position on his team was, and I also don’t understand football. I’m just guessing here. Anyway, Jackie tries to comfort her and reminds her that their plan is still a go.
Or is it? When Vanessa and Shelli tell Liz about what went down with Austin and Jason, she doesn’t believe that Austin would actually target her sister. She believes that he just did what he did because he’s obsessed with her and just wants to keep her safe. She also reminds them that he’s a vote for their side of the house, and if they get rid of him, they’ll only have five people in the alliance instead of six. She asks Vanessa to talk to Austin about it, and Vanessa agrees. Stupid, stupid plan. Stupid.
But Vanessa does pull Austin in and tells him that he’s painted a huge target on Liz’s back (not to mention his own, she carefully leaves out), and adds that he’d really hurt her by going behind her back. Everyone wants him out, and if she doesn’t follow through, she’ll be the one everyone else goes after. Austin insists that he’d made a mistake in letting Jason manipulate him and throw him under the bus (what? Dude is crazy). He asks her if she’s going to backdoor him, and when she can’t lie her way out of that question, we get what I believe is the first bit of real emotion from either of them. He begs her to let him stay, that he’ll always be on her side and that he’ll never vote her out. He reminds her as well, that he’s a vote in her camp, and she can’t deny that. She tells him that in order to remain off the block, he’s got to convince Shelli and Clay to want to keep him.
When he first starts blaming Jason in his conversation with Shlay, Shelli doesn’t seem to believe a word he says, but he doesn’t let up, apologizing for making mistakes and playing with his heart, and she softens. He’s fallen in love with Liz, he says, and that allowed him to be manipulated by Jason. Shelli and Clay tell him that he’s been playing too emotionally, and he needs to knock it off. Relieved that he seems to be getting through to them, he promises them everything they want to hear, so when they go back to Vanessa, they side with him, agreeing that they need his vote, so they should keep him. Vanessa points out that she’d given her word to the other side of the house that she’d backdoor Austin, and if she doesn’t go through with it, they’ll all come after her, and it’s true. Saving Austin is best for Shelly and Clay’s game. It’s not best for her own. They decide if she does decide to keep Austin, she should nominate Jason, since he’s the most strategic player among the players on the other side of the house.
In the midst of all of this, James, Liz and Vanessa all get to participate in their BoB reward-dinner in the backyard provided by the Outback Steakhouse-and they each get to choose one person to join them. Vanessa, in what I’m assuming is an attempt to assuage her guilt, chooses Becky. Liz picks Austin, of course, and James picks….Clay? Yeah, Meg doesn’t get it either. Shelli complains that she’s going to miss him while he spends an hour away from her (allow me to roll my eyes. This is almost as bad as when she called him poopyhead).
Once dinner is done, it’s time for the Veto meeting. Clay, not surprisingly, takes himself off the block. Vanessa stands and talks about the person she’s going to put up-he’s someone she knows she’ll be friends with outside the house, she loves him, etc. – and then calls Jason up to the hot seat, immediately calling down the wrath of every non-Six Sense Dark Moon member. Jackie is shocked and betrayed. Meg is crying. And Jason is LIVID. He’s not going without a fight, and if he makes it through this week, he’ll be out for Vanessa’s blood.
I, personally, think Vanessa made a huge mistake. She just made enemies of half the house by saving Austin and putting up Jason. The only person she would have upset by backdooring Austin would have been Liz, because Julia seemed to be way on board for going through with the plan. She was pissed when she found out that Austin wanted her out. Yes, saving Austin is better for Shelli and Clay’s game, but she did herself a great disservice by catering to them. She was the one who went to everyone else with the idea of backdooring Austin. If she’d followed through, she’d have been queen of the house. Everyone would’ve followed her blindly. Now, she’s pissed off everyone not in the Sixth Sense alliance, and while they haven’t done much of anything game wise so far, she may have just given them reason to team up with each other. She might’ve just given them the rally call they needed. Not only that, but Austin seems super unstable. He even seems to believe in his own lies now, as he told us in the Diary Room that he won’t let Jason manipulate him again. WHAT. Dude is crazy. Plus, he’ll always put Liz first. If it comes down to a choice between Liz and Vanessa, Austin will sell her out faster than anything. How Vanessa doesn’t see this, I have no idea.
So now the question is, who will go home this week? Becky or Jason? It’s really hard to say. We know that Clay, Shelli, Austin and Liz will vote Jason out. I believe that Jackie, James and Meg will vote out Meg. That just leaves Steve and John. Based on Steve’s glee at Becky’s misery during the POV comp, it wouldn’t surprise me to see him vote her out. But John seems to have a connection with Becky, and if I’m right, he’ll be the swing vote. In my opinion, it would be in his best interests to vote Becky out, because Jason can probably help to get him further in the game than Becky could. He’s smart and observant and actually seems to be playing the game. Becky, on the other hand, hasn’t seemed to do much of anything so far. If the other side of the house can finally team up against the Sixth Sense, then maybe they can take control and run the other team into the ground.
What are your thoughts? Who do you think is going home this week? And did Vanessa make a huge mistake, or did she get it right? Let me know what you think!