Breaking Point

I thought I’d make it through the season before I would have to re-evaluate whether or not I’d cover Big Brother anymore.

But yesterday I read Amanda making threats to slit throats of anyone who didn’t put Elissa Slater in the next eviction cycle…and I said to myself “I don’t need this.”

I realized the two made nice last night, but some threats just go too far.

It’s my understand that the phrase was said mainly in jest, but it wasn’t the first time Amanda had said that specific threat. Had she typed it on Facebook (on Twitter too, maybe) she’d be put in jail.

They don’t allow NFL players to make throat slashing gesture, and haven’t for several years after O.J. Simpson’s alleged murder of his wife back in 1994. I don’t think speaking of slitting throats has any place in the game.

So I’m done covering this season. I’ll update the “Fall of Houseguests” every week until the show ends, but that’s it. Future projects BB related are TBA.

Thanks to all for who have stopped by this site, but my line in the sand has been crossed.

Another Message From Hailey Jones

Hailey Jones sends another message...

Hailey Jones sends another message…

So on the 65th day of competition, Amanda Zuckerman finally won something. In a clutch situation, Amanda won the Power of Veto, so she likely saves boyfriend McCrae from the block. Confidence is somewhat high that Andy Herren makes his first trip to the block on Monday as his replacement.

The POV contest was another Zingbot themed event, and apparently Andy got zinged over being a floater (someone who gravitates to wherever the power is, not true to any side at any time) which got him upset.

We can talk all we want about whether or not the show is rigged, for who, and why. But what gets lost in all of that is how the show is interfering with the game play this season. A couple of weeks ago, Julie Chen asked a highly suggestive Twitter question (or so she said) as to why nobody is playing the game this year. That is, all the votes for a stretch were unanimous, and that with Helen Kim in the house, everyone always seemed to take paths of least resistance.

Personally, I find that kind of interference more disquieting than the “it’s rigged” rumor mill out there in the Twitterverse.

Assume for a moment that every conspiracy theory out there is absolutely true. Who would we all appeal to restore order? The very people who caused the disorder to begin with. It’s kind of a variation of a Stockholm Syndrome, really.

Is Hailey Jones right in what “she” says? If she is, we won’t know until the show is nearly over. Plus, Amanda has several more obstacles to dodge before she wins, including how she will win the Final 2 vote against anybody as she has angered a lot of the prospective and current jurors.

Did you catch Jessie Kowalski saying “F**k you Amanda” a couple of times in the HOH competition Thursday night?

I wish some of you out in the realm of social media would smarten up. Whether or not the show is rigged is irrelevant, since we all continue to watch it. If this is what you think, simply turn the show off, or go watch something else on the Internet. That’s all you need to do. As for me, I starting covering this season, so I intend to finish covering it Lord willing. When and if season sixteen comes around, I will make my decision to cover it then and only then.

Mysteries And Realities

Some on the Internet can't stop talking about Helen's HOH competition exit.

Some on the Internet can’t stop talking about Helen’s HOH competition exit on Day 63.  Here’s a GIF I found of the exit (with thanks to whoever uploaded it first), you be the judge.

We’re now up to the evening of the 64th day of season fifteen. Last night, Elissa Slater won a ball catching competition while the cast stood on small platforms against a wall to capture her first Head of Household reign of the season. Also in the competition were the last four evictees: Judd Daugherty, Jessie Kowalski, Candice Stewart, and the most recently departed Helen Kim. Whoever survived amongst those four won re-entry back into the house, and if one of the four jurors caught ten balls before the seven houseguests did, then the juror won re-entry and would reign as HOH.

Elissa then nominated McCrae Olson on his maiden voyage on the block, along with Elissa’s nearly season long nemesis, Aaryn Gries.

There was a controversial moment regarding Kim’s departure from the HOH comp, with the Twitterverse swearing up and down that Helen was tapped on her right heel to exit the competition, and therefore the game.

I submit that whether or not conspiracy exists is a moot point. Remember, this is a show that said in the fine print of the MVP vote at the start of the season that they can invalidate any votes they want, nor have they shown the percentage breakdown of any vote in any season for the world to see. It is their game, and we’re given the illusion that the game is real. If we question their reality, it defeats the purpose of the question, since they own the reality.

Does that mean that I believe its totally rigged? No. It’s somewhere between a legitimate contest and totally rigged. Endemol spends a lot of time removing content from YouTube not only because they own the show, but (in my case) they tend to remove what is “conspiracy theory” material. I put up the alleged “monkey” clip of Amanda a few weeks ago so people could judge the incident for themselves. If Endemol doesn’t want that material around, it obviously leads to the question of why, a question no one requires them to answer.

As for me, I had to answer a quiz on YouTube over the sins of posting copyrighted material, when other copyrighted material of BB15 exists on the Internet in abundance that is not controversial. I guess you could call it sensitivity training. I find it amazing that if you post copyrighted material of, say, CNN breaking a news story, that’s fine. But if you dare commit the sacrilege of showing 10 seconds of a Big Brother season, you are automatically assumed guilty.

What got lost in the shuffle of Helen’s somewhat mysterious exit is in the moments that followed, Candice just walked off the small plank, willingly surrendering her shot at half a million dollars. Judd explained later that she had no interest in returning. If true, why did she wait until it was down to herself and Judd in the jurors race to re-enter?

I tend to believe in my more cynical moments that these controversies are staged merely to get the “marks” (us fans) to stay interested in the show. This blog was ahead of the curb in the deduction that half of the cast was put in there to make Elissa look good. The havoc they have caused has certainly kept all of us talking about the show to the point where it has prompted further discussion of the issues it has centered upon.

If we had simply turned off the show, the arguments themselves would become moot points.

Sound And Fury Signifying Nothing

Helen Kim looks like a goner at this point in time. Little does she know she may return to the game just as quickly as she leaves.

Helen Kim looks like a goner at this point in time. Little does she know she may return to the game just as quickly as she leaves.

It sadly speaks volumes of this season of Big Brother when the most anticipated eviction to date of the season seems boring, and the fifth scheduled returning houseguest in show history seems more of an anticlimax and a footnote more than anything else. But yet here we are on the evening of Day 62.

There was some excitement in the house this day earlier on as a discussion between the season’s odd couple, Aaryn Gries and Elissa Slater, turned into a shadowy game of who said what. When Elissa tried to talk sense into Aaryn first thing in the morning, Aaryn accused Elissa of threats to Helen Kim as soon as Elissa was out of earshot. From there, it got messy, as hints and allegations got thrown around liberally over the ensuing minutes and hours. At one point, Elissa told Aaryn she’s Rachel sister, therefore she isn’t going anywhere. (Didn’t I say back in June that Elissa might have some DR stroke? I think I did.) At another point, Amanda Zuckerman and Slater were having cross words, and Elissa dished it out just as quickly as she was taking it.

Then there was the usual “the game is rigged for Elissa” vitriol from the houseguests behind Elissa’s back, (somewhat verified by Elissa’s own comments) followed by the usual rounds of “I’m sorry” and “I love you” all around, ending what had started a couple of hours later.

Simply put: if Helen goes out the door tomorrow and does not return, Amanda has this game on lock. She’ll go to the end and pick up one of those checks with a five and some zeros in it. I’m not saying she’ll win, but she should make the final two. The only question is whether or not Zuckerman has a catastrophic blowup sometime between now and the time the game ends. Considering her dependency for Adderall, that still can happen.

I’m sure the live show tomorrow will hype the chances of whoever returns, but who it is doesn’t really matter all that much at this point.

Helen Under The Gun

Elissa once again saves herself from peril, becoming the first two-time POV winner this season.

Elissa once again saves herself from peril, becoming the first two-time POV winner this season.

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’ve found the past several days lacking in excitement.

First, a brief recap: Helen Kim and Elissa Slater were the nominees put up by now four-time HOH Aaryn Gries on Friday. But once again, Elissa (though she was not the target this time) saved herself by winning the rough and tumble “OTEV” contest last night. She will likely save herself off the block and make a little history happen, as the most likely scenarios have Spencer Clawson going up a record-tying sixth time as the replacement nominee. If all goes according to plan, Helen Kim will be the ninth evicted but earning a one in four chance at going back in the house as a returnee. If Spencer is nominated but yet stays in the game, he will very likely break the nominations record, since at least a unprecedented seventh nomination will be needed to evict him.

I’d very much like to see Candice Stewart return to the house just for the excitement factor alone. Notice how obsessed Ginamarie Zimmerman is of her, even though game wise she scored the kill? Candice was the target of a lot of bullying in the house during her 49 day stay, so bringing her back even if for just another week would not doubt send the house in a tizzy.

If Jessie Kowalski comes back, it winds up being awkward since she made her peace with the house.

If Judd Daugherty comes back, the main protagonists behind his demise are pretty much gone. Andy Herren would likely be who he’d stalk after, or would it be Amanda Zuckerman? McCrae Olson?

If Candice came back, it would be ratings gold. The fact that this isn’t an “America’s Choice” tells me this is the outcome producers are hoping for. Wouldn’t blame them if they attempted to fix it this way.

Baby Faced Assassin

Aaryn's clown doll gets more airtime...Miss Gries won her 4th HOH last night, tying the single season record.

Aaryn’s clown doll gets more airtime…Miss Gries won her 4th HOH last night, tying the single season record.

The field for season fifteen has now been cut in half from 16 to 8, although we learned last night that indeed one of the jurors will be returning in a week, so the field will stay go down to seven briefly next week and then return to eight.

Jessie Kowalski’s rampage in the house could not be sustained, mainly because the rampage could not change the outcome of the vote. She was voted out 6-0 for now, with either her, Judd Daugherty, Candice Stewart, or next week’s evictee going back in. It’s no secret that I’m not a big fan of the revolving door, it’s a twist that really hasn’t payed dividends over the years as much as you’d think. And with this bunch, whoever gets back in may very well get kicked back out again.

There was yet another faux marriage ceremony between Amanda Zuckerman and McCrae Olson. I didn’t think it would be any good, but it was tongue-in-cheek enough to be humorous. I doubt, however, there relationship lasts once they get back into reality.

We may not like Aaryn Gries for what she says in the house and her racist views (unlike the fiction the TV show peddles, she is not the only one in the house with those views, but they use her as the poster child of these shady characters), but we better recognize that she is a damn good player in that house. Or is it the rest of the house is that inferior? She’s already captured her fourth reign of HOH-dom with yet another competition win, tying five others (including four winners) on the all-time single-season leaderboard.  It took Janelle Pierzina 60 days and ten eviction cycles for her to claim her four HOH’s, Aaryn did it in 56 days in nine cycles.

Apparently, Elissa Slater chose the moment right before the HOH competition to talk trash to Aaryn and her on-and-off pal Ginamarie Zimmerman, so it’s a safe bet that she and house dictator Helen Kim will go up on the block. That pairing would make Helen a much more appetizing target, but the house doesn’t know that whoever leaves next Thursday might just go back in the game. Should make for an interesting week.

One Woman Army

When Aaryn Gries (left) and Ginamarie Zimmerman (right) exchange words, who do you root for?  Who CAN you root for?!?

When Aaryn Gries (left) and Ginamarie Zimmerman (right) exchange words, who do you root for? Who CAN you root for?!?

So on the 53rd day of action in season fifteen, things got interesting. Even Elissa Slater admitted late last night that they may have put people in the house that are crazy to make her look good, which is something this blog figured out quite early in the season.

The strife in the house comes from one source: Jessie Kowalski, who had her best day in the house this season even though reigning Head Of Household and Power Of Veto holder Andy Herren chose not to use the veto, a first for this bizarro season. Yes, even better than last Thursday when she stayed in the “lighting round” eviction cycle that claimed Judd Daugherty.

As the late poker player Amir Vahedi famously said, “In order to live, you must be willing to die.” Jessie, with nothing to lose, is playing exactly that kind of game. She rattled the cages of three key pieces to this season’s puzzle: Helen Kim, Elissa Slater, and Aaryn Gries. She had Miss Gries so rattled that she had a lengthy argument with her in-game confidant, Ginamarie Zimmerman that prompted a house meeting where the two continued their harangue in front of most of the house when each would be better served to have done so in private.

Jessie also got Elissa so rattled that Slater was even contemplating quitting the game if Jessie continued to verbally harass her.

These next few days which seemed to be a bore snore affair may actually have some excitement to it. It’s like a football team trailing, needing a touchdown to win without possession of the ball. The other side is so cocky that they’re throwing passes even though a few kneels of the ball run the clock out. Jessie has pulled off one miracle already, she may yet pull off another unless cooler heads prevail.