Howie gets at least one thing right this week…
Another day, another curveball. This season of Big Brother
has been so twisty, you’d almost think the producers were rigging it. But don’t worry, good people of Endemol USA. I know you’re simply sitting back in your chairs, tenting your fingers, and laughing as these silly, silly contestants continue to whip up amazing television for all to enjoy. Honestly, the only thing more shocking than the hairpin turns these people make is the news that Big Brother
viewership is down ten percent. WTF, America?? Do you even know
what you’re missing? Pundits say that viewers are retreating to cable in the wake of the networks’ over-saturated reality programming. That may be true, but I also think people were turned off by this season’s all young, all beautiful cast. Heck, I was too at first. But now this group has unsheathed a set of knives sharper than what I’ve seen in almost any season. To the ten percent of you that gave up after that first humdrum week, I simply say “Come back!” You have no idea what you’re missing.
Now before I kick off this recap, please do yourself a solid and vote
once more for Kaysar. And if you really want to show your support, buy one of our beautiful magnets
too (cut to Vanna White smiling and holding one up). Come on people. If you’re willing to throw down for a stupid “Vote for Pedro” t-shirt, you can at least shell out for a magnet that not only looks cool but actually has a real
It’s not Vanna White, but it was the best I could find.
Okay. Enough groveling. Let’s get down to business. Our latest hour of reality splendor began with the standard blue-and-white flashback to Saturday’s nomination show. For those of you who may have forgotten, Howie joined the Friendship (sigh) and nominated his former allies, James and Sarah. Why? Because James had sworn on the Bible to nominate Howie and Rachel if he won Head of Household. That might sound like it makes sense on paper, but dammit Howie! What the hell do you think is gonna happen once you get rid of James and Sarah? You think the Friendship is going to choose you over one of their own? Stupid stupid stupid.
Anyway, in the wake of these idiotic noms, Sarah of course began crying in the confessional while James told us he was simply at a loss for words. Wow. James is never at a loss for words. I mean, couldn’t he just do a basic put down? You know, call Howie a dumbass or something? I don’t like this speechless version of James. It’s like his momma came down to the house and beat him upside the head with her giant crucifix. And you know she’s done it before.
As everyone left the table in slow motion, Maggie then added her two cents to the situation, employing that sort of righteous, bureaucratic tone you’d normally find with a nonprofit group’s spokeswoman. “The Friendship would have looked very poorly on Howie for not putting up James and Sarah,” she said. Well, if Howie had put up Maggie and Ivette, who the hell would have cared what the Friendship would have thought? They’d be depleted! Okay, must settle down. The last thing I want to be is one of these bloggers who shakes his fist and gets all in a huff over a silly reality show. Man, those people are just lame. Did I mention that I’m selling magnets??
Well, James and Sarah immediately retreated to the gold room, which has become the de facto holding area for all newly-nominated people. If I were ever on Big Brother, and I was nominated, I would buck the trend and jump in the pool. That would shake things up! Then, if I got evicted, maybe Julie Chen would awkwardly ask me, “Now you jumped in the pool when you were nominated. How do you think the houseguests reacted to that?” At that point, I would just do something even crazier, like deny that it ever happened. “What pool? I don’t know what you’re talking about. I never went in the pool.” I don’t think the Chenbot would know what to do. Next year, America, next year…
Anyway, in the golden room of anguish, Sarah pouted on the bed, saying that she didn’t want to talk to anyone. Not anyone at all! She was going to be silent and angry and anti-social the rest of the week. And don’t you dare speak to anyone either, JAMES! Well, James didn’t quite agree with this course of action; so he announced he was going to talk to Howie, causing Sarah to bounce up from the bed and say, “I’m coming too!” Way to stick to your guns, Sarah.
James and Sarah trekked upstairs to the HOH room where they angrily confronted Howie about his choices. The future weatherman claimed he couldn’t trust James after the whole swearing-on-the-bible thing, and while Howie’s sense of betrayal was reasonable, his strategy was not. “You made this decision because you believed them,” said James, thankfully pointing out Howie’s gullibility. Sure enough, the two managed to make some inroads on their former ally, causing Howie to eventually concede, “James and Sarah are right. I made a very bad decision.” Ya think?? So let’s recap Howie’s wonderful reign as HOH. After two hours in power, he managed to overextend himself with promises, reveal his and Rachel’s gameplan, disassemble his OWN alliance — which, oh by the way, was in power — and then admit that he had done everything wrong. Fantastic. God, this household needs Kaysar back so badly.
And to add insult to injury, Howie managed to add, “They took it personal.” Personal-LY! Personal-LY!!!!! ADVERBS!!!!!!
Later, Sarah — a.k.a. Ms. “I’m not talking to anyone so THERE!” — wound up, er, talking to people. The nice, innocent girl started up with the Queen Bee of vicious gabbing, April. As happy as I was to see a belligerent Sarah, we all knew this wouldn’t end well. After all, April’s been making mincemeat of girls for nearly six decades now. It would be like me trying to be more passive aggressive than Dame Judi Dench. Not gonna happen.
“How many times do I have to tell you, stay away from people!” scolded James as he pulled his contentious girlfriend back to the safety of the gold room. Honestly, if there had been rope and a gag available, he would have used it. But if you thought he was free from the scolding, you might want to think again. Sarah and James reversed roles again, and she lectured him for his silly bible promise to Ivette. Man, Sarah was right about that one. I think all us viewers had a bad feeling last week when James pulled that move, but who knew it would bite him in the ass so quickly? Who knew that Howie would be so obtuse as to empower the Friendship another week? And who knew that this supposedly predictable week would haunt my every waking thought? (Except when I watch Laguna Beach. My brain is fully shut down then.)
Eventually this semi-spat resulted in Sarah sobbing. “We’re not bad people! Why are these people doing this?” Mmmm…the Sarah meltdown will be so wonderful. She better not go this week. We still need her to be the wacko swing vote later this season. She’ll be a total nut case. And I mean nut case. I’m talkin’ about Lil from Survivor: Pearl Islands levels.
Well, amidst all this drama, the producers decided to spice things up by plopping a few piñatas and margaritas in the backyard. James and Sarah discovered them first, and because everyone was upstairs babbling in the HOH room, the two nominees simply kept the fiesta to themselves. Sarah made a bee-line to the blue margarita machine, but before we could see her devolve into the angry drunk we so wanted her to be, little Jennifer (the Frodo of The Friendship) came down the stairs and figured out what was going on. After that, it was only a matter of seconds before the rest of the group came pouring into the backyard, with Ivette squealing like an idiot (as usual). People could tell Ivette that she has a present waiting for her a mile away, and she’d scream the entire way there. The good news, at least, was that with all the shrieking and excitement , Jennifer somehow resisted her Pavlovian urge to cartwheel forty-seven times around the backyard. Honestly, if given the choice, she would just stop walking altogether and make cartwheeling her dominant mode of locomotion. This, of course, fuels my dream of having someone cartwheel out of the Big Brother house and into Julie Chen’s studio. And now that, of course, fuels my dream of someday seeing the Chenbot do a cartwheel as well. The possibilities are endless.
Anyway, with all these piñatas around, it was inevitable that we were in for this season’s big Arts & Crafts night (which, as always, is followed by the cruel DESTROY YOUR CREATION day). This time around, the house guests had to grab a piñata and personalize it to their likeness. Thankfully there was a black piñata for Beau, thus avoiding what could have been an awkward blackface-effigy moment later.
Everyone got to work decorating, and while most people made happy little creations, Sarah took this opportunity to employ the rarely seen passive-aggressive piñata. The angry nominee painted a frown and tears on her dummy, and while it wasn’t necessarily the most effective form of guilt I’d seen, I still respected that she had brought the art of passive-aggresion to the world of piñatas. Just imagine: how much better would this world be if we could convey more emotions through piñata-ism?
Sarah’s passive-aggressive piñata: “Oh, don’t mind me. I’m just a piñata. You know, whatever.”
By the way, James earned bonus points for making his piñata the image of an angry outcast, replete with middle fingers erect and an ironic halo overhead. I mean, yeah, it looked pretty dumb, but I was pretty sure that when no humans were around, it came to life and beat up all the Friendship piñatas. Hey, speaking of which, remember that crazy little piñata that looked really stupid? You know, the one that attacked house guests? Oh wait, that was Eric.
After arts and crafts were done, the new and improved sassy Sarah tried to guilt April AGAIN. Doesn’t anyone respect their elders anymore? This woman has lived through TWO WORLD WARS! And now she has to put up with the crap of some angry whippersnapper? Just leave her be, Sarah. You’re interrupting her Matlock fantasies.
Later, after James had pulled his fiery partner back into the gold room of shame, the two asked Janelle if she really believed they’d turn on the alliance. The VIP waitress said no, but we could also see she wasn’t totally sold on James and Sarah being all that innocent either. Amazingly, Sarah managed to chime in with a salient strategic observation: “The funny thing is that they [the Friendship] came up with a damn good story about Michael to make the entire house hate Michael.” EXACTLY. Somebody has to stop The Friendship! They are the biggest character assassins of all! Janelle eventually told us she didn’t know what to believe, but I think she knows exactly what’s going on. She’s just trying to see which alliance will crumble first.
Anyway, it was finally time for the big veto competition, and oddly enough, Sarah chose Jennifer (cartwheels for all!) as her partner. “I didn’t want somebody strong. I wanted somebody I could stand next to and not just want to punch in the face,” Sarah said. And when, exactly, did Jennifer not become somebody you didn’t want to punch in the face? Must I remind you: CARTWHEELS.
James selected Ivette as his partner (some weird logic about being able to tell Ivette “It’s okay” if she were to win it), and Howie, of course, enlisted his trusty — and smarter — partner Rachel. Anyway, the veto competition was pretty much a reiteration of last season’s piggy bank disaster in which Diane fudged up an opportunity to rid the house of Jase. All the competitors were sequestered to different parts of the house, and then one of the time, they each had to go to the backyard where six piñatas (all representing the participants) hung. Each person would then get ten candies which he or she would have to insert into at least two different piñatas. In the end, the person whose piñata had the closest to twenty candies without going over (that would result in elimination) would win.
Now as everyone knows from Diane’s big folly last year, since everyone wanted James out, they should have each put the max number of candies (nine) in his piñata. Makes sense, right? Well, let’s not forget we were dealing with The Friendship here. Not the brightest bulbs in the bulb store. Yeah, they may be effective with their righteous, insidious smear campaigns, but when it comes to everyday logic, well, they’re idiots. Anyway, Friendship friend Rachel kicked things off by equally distributing her candies and then splitting her remaining two amongst her and Howie’s piñatas. It was a noble effort but completely dumb. You see, Rachel was thinking less about eliminating James and more about winning the prize. Jennifer then spread her candies around, and honestly, she described her logic, and dammit if I could tell you what she was thinking. Her candy distribution pretty much made little to no sense whatsoever. Ivette, surprisingly, caught the gist of the game and loaded James’ piñata with nine of her candies, and since I wasn’t counting (I was blissfully seeking surprise), I surely thought this had put him over the twenty mark.
Anyway, after everyone was done with the candy, the whole gang gathered in the backyard to find out the results. Ivette attacked her piñata first but immediately encountered difficulty. “My piñata refused to break!” she exclaimed in the Diary Room. She then raised her arms to the heavens and yelled, “Oh Cappy! Give me the strength to defeat this piñata! I am merely your humble servant!!” Okay, that didn’t happen, but the spirit of Cappy was with Ivette as she finally pried her piñata open to reveal three meager candies waiting inside. Sarah clocked in next with ten candies, but she was topped by Howie with sixteen. Jennifer had six, and then James — drumroll — received EIGHTEEN. Yes, it was like Jase all over again. Except this time, we’re happy about it.
“Why aren’t there more candles in his if… these people want him out. Are they frickin’ retarded?” asked an incredulous Janelle. The answer, in short, is yes.
As for James, he commented, “The more my spirits lifted, the more the mood of the crowd depressed.” This was exemplified by Maggie who looked more devastated than the time she found out her short story “Turtles!” had been rejected by Random House.
The Friendship reacts to its own stupidity.
Well, James won the veto… again. This caused Ivette to ask, “What the hell happened today at ‘A Lotta Piñata’? There wasn’t a lotta thinkin’ goin’ on, was there?” Man, when Ivette accuses you of being dumb, that’s really got to hurt.
Maggie soon chimed in with her own disappointment. “Four minds put together couldn’t come up with a surefire way to eliminate two people from getting the veto,” she complained. Well, to be fair, it was four minds but only three brain cells. ZING!
James’ victory was bittersweet because while he was able to save his ass, Sarah’s was still on the line. If only there were a “mixed emotion” piñata hangin’ around… Anyway, the two returned to their golden rejection room where they nestled together in a chair and cried. Yes, James shed a tear. It was the most emotional outpouring since Maggie first learned her glass turtle had shattered. I’m just going to keep comparing things to Maggie and turtles. Really makes my job easier.
Elsewhere in the house, April volunteered to be the pawn but then backed down, suggesting that Ivette go up instead. This of course led to a casual squabble, with both women announcing that they couldn’t stand each other anymore. We’ll put that on hold though because CBS soon surprised the prisoners with a brand new arts & crafts activity. Two in one episode! I feel like I’m watching Current TV! (Whoosh! Random attack by TVgasm! On your toes, Al Gore!)
So basically, the way this worked was that everyone could tie-dye t-shirts and campaign for one of the evicted house guests to return. But not Ashlea. As we all remember, she left quarantine and is now lost somewhere in the Rocky Mountains. Word has it she’s sustaining herself on a steady diet of small birds and rodents. Residents of Northern Colorado have been urged to lock their doors and keep all livestock under heavy surveillance. And if anyone spots what appears to be a Sasquatch with giant breasts, please notify the authorities.
Anyway, the roomies all designed their stupid shirts, and Ivette expressed to us the urgency of this task. “Making these t-shirts are very important because I’ve got to get America to know how important it is for Cappy to come back,” she said. Yes, make sure America knows. I’m sure the country hasn’t realized after two weeks of you endlessly eulogizing him. You know, I’ve got five minutes to spare. Why not just tell me all over again why he’s so wonderful. I keep forgetting, even though you mention him EVERY TWENTY SECONDS.
As for the rest, Howie and Rachel endorsed Kaysar (and his hookah) while Janelle put in a solitary vote for Michael with her seemingly egg-stained tank top. Apparently she had spent the evening rolling around in an omelette. Unsurprisingly, The Friendship made a sartorial push for Eric, with Maggie designing a vomit-inducing top that read, “Eric = Duty, honor, integrity, trust.” Oops! Looks like she forgot to add “Dumb, righteous, obnoxious, and transparent.” That’s okay Maggie. We all make mistakes. If it’s any consolation, your pet turtle made you a t-shirt, but all it says is “You are not my mother.” Yeah, you might want to have a talk with the little guy.
During this creative outpouring, April started up with Ivette once again about being the pawn (doesn’t she know not to interrupt when Ivette is making a ghetto Picasso?). The two wound up yelling at each other over really nothing at all, and a glimmer of hope shone through as The Friendship showed early signs of being just merely The Acquaintanceship. Later, Ivette played chess with James, causing Maggie and April to fear the worst. You see, let’s not forget The Friendship was founded by Eric, the same man whose seventh-grade-clique-mentality led him to ostracize Michael for merely talking to people outside the original all-male alliance. By even sharing the same air with James, Ivette immediately got a target on her back from her nervous and insular friends. Of course, Janelle was only happy to fan these flames of paranoia as she told April, “I think she’s working with him.” Good ole Janelle. Always stirring shit up. Have I mentioned recently that I love her? ‘Cause I do.
Well, having successfully launched smear campaigns against Michael and James, The Friendship seemed to now be locking onto Ivette. Soon Howie was gettin’ all nervous, saying “I really think that James and Ivette are a more lethal pair than James and Sarah.” This was echoed by April and Jennifer, the latter of whom had ceased cartwheeling and was now happily plucking things off Howie’s back. It was very pygmy marmoset-ish.
At the veto ceremony, Sarah addressed the household and tearfully said that James had taught her to trust people, but the roommates had all but destroyed that. This managed to get James a little verklemped, but when he regained his composure, he then scolded the house just the way I would have liked. “I know a lot of times people say they make decisions based on strategy,” he said. “But this game has not been played with strategy. This game has been played a lot of times through fear and popularity contests. And that is why I was able to win this. Because people did not make strategic decisions. They made dumb decisions.”
Oh SNAP!!! He just put all y’all in your places! Well, with James safe yet again, Howie — that master of the wacky hat — nominated Ivette as a pawn. I can’t really imagine Ivette going, despite her tiff with April, but an upset is always welcomed. As crazy as this season’s been, we’ve yet to have a truly unpredictable eviction. Hopefully Howie will snap out of this spell The Friendship has cast on him and restore Kaysar’s vision. Or better yet, hopefully Kaysar will walk back in that house fix the machine that Howie broke. I’m pretty sure that Sarah will receive the boot on Thursday, but maybe, just maybe, James can pull a miracle and get April or Jennifer to switch sides. Don’t think it’ll happen, but dammit if I’m not already counting down to the live show.
What do you think? Has James alienated himself too much? Can he save possibly save Sarah?