When we left off on Thursday, the house guests were on the ledge in an endurance HoH competition, and when we join them tonight, we’re right back there with them. Since Jason was voted out, clear lines have been drawn in the house, and most of the house guests are determined to come out on top in this competition, since from now on, there will only be one HoH each week. Vanessa, Shelli and Clay really angered the other side of the house this past week, and James, Meg and Jackie are determined to turn the tables on them and get a little revenge. The Sixth Sense alliance is determined to win so that the other side of the house won’t be able to get that revenge. And then there are Becky and John. Becky’s just hoping to stay off the block this week, and John…well, who knows what John’s motivation is.
As an extra bit of incentive, Liz promises Austin a kiss if he wins, so of course he’s the second one out, dropping off his ledge immediately after Steve drops from his. Then the other house guests start to follow suit. Julia and Meg don’t last much longer. Jackie really wants to win for Jason, but she can’t make it either. Then Liz jumps when her arms and legs are about to give out. They’re pummeled with freezing cold water and wind and periodically hit in the gut by bald eagles, so it really takes a toll on them all. Except for James apparently. He’s the only one who doesn’t really seem to show any sign of struggle, except for the struggle he purposely displays to try to psych Clay out. It seems to work. Before long, Becky and Clay both fall, leaving only James, Shelli and John up on the ledge.
James had been suggesting deals throughout the competition, and since Shelli is starting to wonder if it’d be in her best interest to win again, she takes him up on it. If James doesn’t nominate her or Clay or John, then she’ll jump down. That’s enough for John, who drops out. James agrees, and Shelli jumps down. James wins HoH!
Here we see the cracks starting to form in the Sixth Sense alliance. Vanessa is shocked that Shelli didn’t bargain for her as well. After all, it’s been the three of them since pretty much the beginning of the game. The fact that Shelli didn’t include Vanessa really shows her where she stands with them. When Shelli confides in her that she didn’t want to win for a third time, Vanessa doesn’t really say much of anything. Shelli insists that she couldn’t have bargained for Vanessa’s safety too because…well, she doesn’t really have a reason, actually. She doesn’t want James to target the twins, and Vanessa reminds her that it’s probably going to be them or her. Shelli really doesn’t seem to get that Vanessa is angry with her. I think it really proves how self-centered Shelli really is.
Meanwhile, Julia pulls Liz aside to talk about what went down last week while she was sequestered. She’d felt really betrayed by Austin for telling Jason about her, but Liz defends him, insisting that Austin didn’t actually want to target Julia. And when Austin joins them and insists that it was Jason who twisted things, Julia doesn’t believe him at all. She calls him out on what he did, pointing out that he was the one who gave Jason her name, and Austin tries to get out of the hot seat, claiming he was trying to keep her and Liz safe just in case Jason won the next HoH competition. Julia knows that this story makes no logical sense and calls him shady right to his face. She doesn’t trust him at all, and this really makes me like Julia. She definitely seems like the smarter of the twins, and while I couldn’t care less if Liz goes home, I’d like see Julia work with the other side of the house and stay in the game longer.
Shelli is an odd one. One second, she doesn’t seem to think about anyone but herself and Clay at all, as we saw earlier, and the next, she’s upset because she feels like she let the alliance down by giving the competition to James-which she both did and didn’t do. Yes, she let her alliance down, but no she did not give the competition to James. It was clear that he was never going to give up that ledge, and she was barely holding on, as Jackie and Meg later pointed out, so she had no chance of winning. He won that challenge fair and square. Anyway, the point is, she feels bad, but Clay doesn’t seem to be so loyal to the alliance. Instead of trying to figure out a way to get James to nominate people outside the alliance, he suggests they try to get him to nominate Austin or the twins. Nice. What a great alliance you’ve got going on here. There are people outside the alliance that you could try to steer James towards, and yet your first thought is to throw your fellow alliance members under the bus. I think your true colours are showing, Clay.
On the lighter side of things, Shelli accuses Clay of mumbling sometimes, and wow, is it true. Even the subtitle programmers can’t seem to figure out what he’s saying half the time. John wonders if maybe he’s been hit on the head one too many times.
And elsewhere in the house, James and Steve seem to have a bit of a prank war going on. We only get to see James scaring the crap out of Steve as he comes out of the bathroom, but apparently this prank war has gone back and forth a few times. At one point, Steve poured honey in a sleeping James’s mouth, and James did the same thing to Steve later in the night. There’s also a vine of James hiding in a garbage bag under the table in the pantry, only to jump out when Steve gets too close. I wish they’d show this kind of thing more often. It’s fun to watch, and it breaks up the drama of game talk. Maybe they will show more of it now that the BoB has been taken away. They’ve got more time to work with now that they don’t have to air an extra competition.
But, back to said game talk. Meg, James, Jackie and Becky are up in the HoH room talking about what they’re going to do. It’s pretty obvious to them that Shelli and Clay have been running the house for several weeks, and they’re ready to shut the couple down. Three of the four want to get rid of Shelli, but Becky cautions them about playing too hard. After all, James can’t play next week, and they don’t want him to be targeted then. The others brush her aside. If they can oust Shelli this week, the only people who would come after them next week would be Clay and maybe Vanessa, they reason. They don’t even consider Austin or the twins, since Shelli, Clay, and Vanessa had been ready to evict Austin last week. Except they didn’t. I don’t understand why they don’t see that Vanessa saving Austin was a huge sign that they’re working together.
Anyway, they try to decide who to put up against Shelli, and come up with either Austin or one of the twins. If they put up Liz, they’ve automatically got two votes against Shelli (Austin and Julia), so that could be a good bet.
But hold your horses there, guys! One of your ranks is not really on your side! Becky, feeling like she owes Clay and Shelli for the fact that she didn’t go home last week (which, BTW, is absolute crap; Becky was never their target, so she doesn’t owe them anything. Actually, THEY owe HER for putting her up on the block in the first place!), decides to warn the pair. She tells them that they’re targets this week, but to just act all rainbows and lollipops until one of them can win the Veto competition and put all this to rest.
Shelli and Clay argue about how to deal with this news-Shelli wants to walk it off, eat cookies and pretend she’s happy like she was just told to do, but Clay wants to talk it out, figure out what they’re going to do next. His suggestion is that they just let James target Vanessa, and I’ve got two problems with this. One, they really seem to think they’ve got more power than they actually do. They’re not letting James do anything. He’ll do what he wants. And two, now Clay has suggested throwing every other person in the alliance under the bus. Dude is shady.
They go up to see James, and Shelli reminds him of the deal they made. James questions why they needed to make a deal in the first place, since they were supposed to have been part of same alliance last week, before Shelli and Clay turned on everyone and voted out one of their own. I love that he plays innocent in this. He’s basically setting them up to hang themselves. Shelli and Clay try to blame the whole thing on Austin, letting James in on the fact that Austin found out about the backdoor plan and campaigned to save himself. James just decides to tell them what they want to hear, but he clearly doesn’t believe them. He sees right through them now, and it’s great.
Vanessa pays James a visit too, and once again insists that the house had wanted Jason out, not her. This lie is so obvious that I can’t see how James could ever buy it, but I can’t tell if he does or not. Either way, he doesn’t seem to think that she’s really to blame for what happened last week, especially when Van points out that Shelli had campaigned for herself and Clay but not for Vanessa. She’s a third wheel, she says. James basically tells her that he’s going to put up Shlay, and Vanessa doesn’t seem too upset about it. If she could do something to save them, she would, but she isn’t in position to do anything for them. Instead, she tells him that if he doesn’t put her up, she’ll make sure he’s safe from eviction until the final 7, along with one other person of his choosing. It’s a deal he can’t really pass up.
So when the nomination ceremony comes around, he forgoes the pawns and puts up Clay and Shelli directly, because they blindsided him last week, and because they need to be split up. Shelli quickly fires back, declaring to the entire house that James’ word means nothing since he’s gone back on the deal he’d made with them earlier. She also declares in front of everyone that neither she nor Clay had anything to do with Jason going home, which once again, pisses off Vanessa. Again, they’re throwing her under the bus, when they need her the most.
And Clay is pissed off that Jason would go back on a promise like that, as if he hadn’t done EXACTLY THE SAME THING THE WEEK BEFORE. It’s one thing to tell everyone else that you weren’t involved with Jason’s eviction, Clay, but we know better. We know you were directly involved. When you’re in the Diary Room, don’t act all hurt by James’ betrayal when you betrayed him last week.
I’m so glad that things have gone down like this. I’ve been hoping all weekend that someone outside the Sixth Sense would win the HoH competition, and my wish came true. The Sixth Sense alliance seems to be crumbling, and I couldn’t be happier. The other side of the house is finally waking up and taking a stand against their enemies. Well, some of them. I don’t understand Becky. I thought she was smarter than that. It’s one thing to suck up to people when they’re in power, but when they’re the targets? It makes no sense! Hopefully neither Shelli nor Clay will win the Veto. If they don’t and the nominations stay the same, I think Shelli will be the one to go, since the other side seems to mostly blame her for everything. If one of them can take themselves off the block, I think they’ll do what they planned on doing before and nominate Liz to go up, hoping that it’ll give them enough votes to oust Clay or Shelli instead. Either way, I’m so excited! This game has needed a bit of a shake up to knock the Sixth Sense down a peg or two. They’ve been far too cocky for their own good, and now they’re paying for it.
What are your thoughts of the outcome of this competition? Did James make the right decision to attempt to cut one of the heads off the snake? Or should he have played a more subtle game? And will hopefully evicting Shelli or Clay be enough to make the Sixth Sense completely crumble? Let me know!