The Husband:

I know I’m a week late in my final round-up for Big Brother 11. Honestly, I’ve been staring at spreadsheets for eight hours a day to make a living, so by the time I get to some “me time,” I just want to sit down and watch Veronica Mars. (I know I’m five years late to the table, but goddamn it’s a good show.) But hey, better late than never.

As you all know, Jordan “No Booger” Lloyd beat, with a vote of 5-2, Natalie “Tae Kwon Don’t” Martinez. The seventh vote was, of course, America’s, and it was revealed online (in an interview with producer Allison Grodner) that in each case that Natalie was hypothetically put up against somebody else in the final two, she lost America’s Vote by 90%. I know it would be sensationalist, but I’ve always wanted a post-finale reunion special (about a week later), just for these situations, because my wife and I would both love to see how Natalie reacts to realizing that America absolutely hates her guts. At least during the two-hour finale (keep up the extended finale, btw, from here on out), the audience laughed when she exclaimed that she stuck by her word. And that her friends Jessie and Lydia would have voted for Michele over her had that been the final two. Oh man, how the assumed mighty has fallen.

But how did it get to this place? Well, my mind was racing during the final two eliminations, first when I got pissed at Kevin for kicking Michele out over Jordan (I thought it was a horrible idea, as I thought he had the best chance of winning against her), then when I got pissed at Jordan for winning the final HOH competitions and ousting Kevin, because I thought she had no chance of winning the final vote so she should have at least not given Natalie $50,000. But hey, I’ve been known to be wrong on occasion, and it seemed that the tide had turned against Natalie, culminating in a tsunami that destroyed her entire game. (Hey, remember when I said it was stupid for Natalie to lie about her age? Well, it seemed to be the spark that set everybody against her.)

No booger, no cry.

No booger, no cry.

In the end, Natalie got two votes (one from Russell, one from Kevin) because she apparently played a better game than Jordan. I personally don’t buy that for a second. Jordan may have seemed out of it, but she controlled Jeff whether or not he wants to admit it. She played it low while letting others do the dirty work, a trend that Natalie only figured would work for herself halfway through the competition. That alone makes Jordan a better player, even if she still shouldn’t have won the money if I had my way. (Jeff, Michele and Kevin would have all been better choices, in that order.)

And Jeff, bless his heart, won $25,000 for being America’s Favorite Player, and this, combined with his appearance on The Bonnie Hunt Show where he apologized profusely and convincingly for his homophobic slurs against Russell during the first week, gives him some major all-star cred should another one of those seasons come around.

So let us finish off this season exploring the expulsion order, and why that specific houseguest was sent packing.

Braden: Overreacted to simply being put up, resulting in an offense-laden storm against several players. This would include calling Kevin a beaner, even if Kevin is actually African-American and Chinese. (Good job, Braden.) Also, was Braden high during the finale?

Laura: By “exposing” Ronnie’s game (which was pretty much out in the open from the beginning), she put a target on her back way too early for her to make any headway in the game. She made it personal too quickly, and that’s a major no-no.

Casey: See “Laura.” He just needed to shut his mouth.

Ronnie: I never really understood how he was a “rat” for playing both sides of the game (I’m sure that at least one of your favorite contestants of yore has done the exact same thing), but his disposition grew less and less sunny each week until he had nothing else to do but be defensive. He played a hard game from the beginning, but he didn’t slow his roll, and he paid for it.

Jessie: Yes, we voted Jeff to receive the Coup d’Etat because we liked him, not because we felt sorry for him. But in the most vital transition of the game, he usurped Chima’s nominations and got Jessie out, thus finally ensuring a fair game in the house. But Jessie took it like a man, and for that I am grateful.

Chima: In the most spectacular meltdown on American Big Brother, Chima threw a multi-day hissy fit and accused the show of being rigged, even though the Coup d’Etat had been introduced seasons earlier during the all-star season. Sorest loser of them all, Chima goes down as being one of the most horrible people to ever play the game. Be an adult and accept that you can’t control everything. Expect the unexpected, motherfucker.

Lydia: For being a drunk and crying over Jessie’s ousting (even though he had nominated her for eviction earlier in the season). What the hell happened to the strong person we saw at the beginning of the season? She lost her mind, that’s what.

Russell: Sick of all of his bullshit (which he unconvincingly says was all an act), Jeff sticks his neck out, changes some plans and gets him out.

Jeff: People say that him evicting Russell did him in, and this is true, but honestly, unless he had won HOH two rounds after he did this, he would have still been gone. Keeping the terrible Russell in would have only kept him around for another week.

Michele: For being too awesome of a player. It all fell apart when Kevin won the veto in a week that saw Natalie come out of nowhere and scoop up the HOH.

Kevin: Jordan knew something we didn’t, and while it meant that Natalie won $50,000, getting Kevin out won her the half-million.

Natalie: For completely fucking up her plan with Kevin to go up against each other in the final third of the HOH competition by sucking at that HOH basketball game, going so far as to forget when she herself was HOH.

Other stray thoughts:

  • Good catch, s3’s Danielle, for pointing out that the only time a woman has won BB was against another woman.
  • Jeff: I don’t need a high-five for bashing somebody. [pause] But was he a tool?
  • Dan is still the best winner in BB history.
  • P.S. If my wife wants to add to any of this, I’m sure she has plenty to say about Natalie
The Wife:

I hate Natalie so much that I wouldn’t be able to articulate my venom towards her without sounding like a truly horrible human being. Sufficient to say, when she lost in the finale, I screamed, “SUCK IT, BITCH!” and punched the air triumphantly.

My problems with Natalie begin with the way she speaks, which honestly in my opinion, sound as though she has some kind of speech disorder that prohibits her from forming sentences in a normal manner. It sounds like she’s always reading off of cue cards and can’t quite get it right. And then there’s the tone of her voice, a gravelly, nasally pitch that sounds so much more shrill and irritating as she stumbles over her words. (Now, Jordan has one of those nasally pitched voices that sounds almost babyish, but the fact that she can form sentences naturally makes her instantly less irritating.)

I also believe Natalie made an egregious amount of stupid decisions. She didn’t make any big plays. She didn’t win jack shit, and simply lucked into winning a crucial HOH because Jordan is bad at numbers. Jordan played like she was  a dumb blonde weakling, but Natalie, with those tacky highlights, actually was what Jordan was pretending to be.

Would I have preferred Natalie get no money at all? Yes. I’d have liked Sugar Bear to get some of that cash so he can marry his boyfriend. But watching her face as she realized all of her friends had turned on her was fucking priceless. Again, I say what I posted as my Facebook status that night:

“Suck it, Natalie! Nobody likes you! Not even your friends like you!”

The Husband:

Some thoughts from the last three weeks of Big Brother.

  • Chima is the worst loser in Big Brother history, or at least as far back as I can remember. (And this is coming from someone who has maybe only missed ten episodes of the show’s 11 seasons.) It’s one thing to “get got” but it’s another to actively force your opinion onto the people who actually run the damn show. I’m sorry that America handed Jeff the Coup D’Etat, but it was not designed by the producers to show you up. It was always going to happen this season, and if you’re a true BB viewer than you should know to expect the unexpected. If you wanted the Coup D’Etat, maybe you shouldn’t have been such a bitch during the run of the show, shouldn’t have called Russell a terrorist and antagonized the entire house. And if you didn’t want it to affect your game, maybe you should have worked out a deal with Jeff ahead of time. Oh, and maybe you should have fought for your right to succeed in this house instead of moping after Jessie’s ousting, turning on the producers and breaking rules left and right. This is their show, not yours, and if things stop going your way, it’s your own damn fault. You have nothing on the show’s producers, and your public statements are bonkers. We’ve had players return to the game, people playing for America, secret connections between contestants preceding the show, and many other surprises. What makes you special? What makes you think your shit don’t stink? Get over yourself, sore loser.
    Queen of the Tards. (Unitards, that is.)

    Queen of the 'Tards. (Unitards, that is.)

  • Lydia, you shouldn’t have lost your goddamn marbles with Jessie’s ousting either. Don’t forget that he wanted you out of the house earlier, and just because you’ve been giving him the occasional “oral compliment” doesn’t mean it’s true love. The tide of the house turned, you handled it poorly, you called Jordan a “ho-puppet” and then…well…you “got got.” Rule #1 of the BB house — if you want to stick around, don’t lose your goddamn mind.
  • While we’re at it, thank God Russell is out of the house. Did anyone actually believe him when he got out of the house, and the next moment was telling us that his douchery was all a façade? I don’t think so, man. I just think you’re trying to save face. I’ve been saying it this whole time — nobody likes a bully, and threatening to make people’s lives hell just because you’re not winning doesn’t make you an uber-villain, it just makes you a jerk. Let’s all do CBS a huge service and just collectively forget that he exists, and when we’re listing the pantheon of notable BB villains, we leave this child off of that list.
  • I am very sorry to see Jeff go, and even if it was a bizarre mixture of heartbreaking and silly to see he and Jordan slowly come apart at the seams, I still wanted to see those kids succeed. Jeff played a very quiet game for a very long time and nearly controlled every aspect of the house without anyone noticing for several weeks, and all that pretty much shifted when he threw the hole-in-one competition. During his Early Show interview, he was remarkably self-aware and knew that his eviction was the result of getting a bit too cocky and flying too high. See? That’s how one goes out like an adult, admitting one’s mistakes and giving credit to those putting him out. Kevin was right, unfortunately for us Jeff lovers, to go against his pact and put he and Michele up, therefore nearly ensuring Jeff’s ousting. (There was little chance Jordan would win the Veto competition and save both herself and her beau, so good show, Kevin.)
  • But goddamn it, thanks to a last-minute HOH win, we have at least two more rounds of Natalie, who is continuing to be the most worthless and myopic BB contestant in a long time. As my wife would say, “just die already.” You contribute nothing to the show, you can’t even create trouble in an interesting way, and your outcry that you were going to get revenge for Chima is stupid, short-sighted and completely missing the point. Do you know what show you’re on? God, I hate misguided ire. And yes, you have broken your word, but just not as openly as others. So shut the fuck up, asshole. Let’s see one of her quotes in the house, shall we? “You don’t accept losing good.” Oh great, and she’s spreading illiteracy. Great job.
  • I am hereby rooting for Michele, who has done an admirable job being really competitive, really smart and, yes, not being an absolute loon. She has made the right decisions at the right time, made herself useful but not too useful and has done it with more dignity than most other people in the house. (Let’s ignore her crying jags, because at this point one can’t help getting a little emotional in the house.) And most importantly, she has shared her game with us, the American viewer, and nobody can accuse her of simply floating. (Truly, the only real floaters have been Natalie and Kevin, and Kevin finally made a good move.)
  • If CBS wants bigger ratings, they should definitely show Jordan taking one of her bubble baths.
  • Julie Chen has done a good job with her Popwatch blog writing down some of the best quotes (many of which we CBS viewers don’t even hear), but my favorite from the last three weeks is definitely the following, said by Jeff: “Holy macaroni. We’re playing for Nilla wafers!”

    And, well, “I’m not a ho-puppet.” But that one’s a given.

The Husband:

Things we learned from the previous week of Big Brother:

  • Kevin is a better player than most of us thought. I always had an inkling, and would have loved to see him receive the power of Coup d’Etat, but he revealed a very shrewd side of his gameplay by not using his hard-earned Power of Veto (the egg competition looked nigh impossible) to save his bestie-best Lydia from the block. His explanation, which makes perfect sense in a strategic fashion but not as far as friendship is concerned, was that he didn’t want to make any enemies. Good call, Kevin, even though it took me by quite a bit of surprise.
  • As a result, Lydia thinks Kevin is a “poopy bear.”
  • Chima was raped by a serial killer. My wife and I disagree over whether or not two murders counts as making one a serial killer, but he was definitely a serial rapist.
  • Jordan seems to baffle Jeff on a constant basis, and after a lengthy discussion on how spiders “do it,” gives him the best line of the week: “Jordan, what do you think about all day?”
  • Jeremy Piven is a bit of a media whore, but at least he brought the house a bit of levity. Still, CBS doesn’t usually allow such majorly R-rated films to be advertised right on their very show, so The Goods seemed like an extremely odd fit. Imagine all the blue-haired ladies who watch this show going to the movie theatre based on BB‘s advertising, only to be aghast at the number of times the word “pussy” is uttered during the film’s running length.
    Ohmigod, Jeremy Piven, I cannot believe you just said pussy in your moooooovie!

    Ohmigod, Jeremy Piven, I cannot believe you just said "pussy" in your moooooovie!

  • Somehow everybody decided to become eight years old again, as evidenced by the agreed-upon name for the hidden power: the Wizard Power. I was amazed nobody mentioned anything about dragons or princesses. (Well, Chima’s family did describe her as a princess, but completely unrelated to anything wizard-based.) (Wife’s Note: But Jessie was, in fact, pretty sure a unicorn would somehow oust him from the house. So, there’s that.)
  • Chima is a sore loser, and her outcry after Jeff used the Coup d’Etat to overthrow her nominations that she needed to “have a talk with the producers” as well as bitching about them not being able to go back into the house after the HOH competition (I assume that they’re getting Jessie’s belongings, as he didn’t have time to pack) just further cements her as one of the most spiteful contestants Big Brother has ever seen.
  • Russell apparently has “ugly-ass cauliflower ears.”
  • Russell is overly sensitive about race to the point that he misunderstands insults, such as “terrorist.”
  • We, apparently, are victims of major CBS editing (what’s new?), as my previous statement could be disproven as it has been mentioned that Chima has actually said some terribly racist things to Russell and that when she said “terrorist,” she may have actually meant what he thought she meant. But we wouldn’t know, since we don’t have live feeds, and I couldn’t find out anything on YouTube yesterday.
  • I’m a fickle bitch, because I actually didn’t want to see Jessie go. I was actually really starting to like him, but I have to consider whether or not I’m just simply comparing him to last year and having a knee-jerk reaction. But he somewhere along the line became noble, or at least the only person who would stand up to Russell and call him out on his bullshit without resorting to Chima-like histrionics.
  • My wife and I disagree greatly on Jeff using the Coup d’Etat. I just really wanted to see Russell go home, but my wife was more interested in having a very entertaining game, and she was basically chanting for him to use it. I think it puts Jeff out in the open too much, even if he has the numbers to back him up. It will bite him in the ass later on, and I still doubt he’ll make it to top 3 as a result because the house will soon see he and Jordan as the house’s biggest threat and split them up the first chance they get. But my wife has said that as long as Chima and Natalie get evicted from the house, she doesn’t entirely care who wins. Nobody has stood out as a major show hero this year, I agree, but I still have my preferences.
  • Michele is owning everybody’s asses.

The Wife:

I was indeed extremely excited for Jeff to use his Coup d’Etat power because I knew it was the only way to break up the Jessie-Natalie-Chima alliance. Natalie is nothing without Jessie to follow around and, while I agree that he became a much better person this season, he still fell back on some of his old gameplay from last year. He knew he was going home, and rather than fight for it, he just gave up, sleeping away half his days, as Julie pointed out in his exit interview. This is exactly what he did last year, as well. The minute he knew there was a change in the wind, he just gave up.

Do I think Russell is a d-bag? Absolutely. However, when he doesn’t allow himself to get overcome by emotions and foiled by the intricacies English semantics, he actually has shown me some smart gameplay. Case in point: his appeal to Jessie at the pool table in which he told the bodybuilder that the ladies of the house would most certainly oust him sooner rather than later because they know they can’t win physical competitions against him. That’s the moment in which I think Jessie knew he was doomed.

I really believe that the biggest d-bag in the house is Chima, though. I feel sympathetic regarding her rape, and I admire her dedication in being a “survivor” and not a “victim.” However, she’s still a terrible person. She’s a diva, an instigator and not as smart as she thinks she is by any stretch of the imagination. Nothing has made me feel better about my opinion of Chima than hearing the package in which her grandmother commented on her beloved Chima’s actions in the house . . . and seeing the elderly woman’s complete and total disappointment in Miss Chima’s lack of civility and downright stank-ass attitude about everything. That is not how she raised that girl to be! I hope Chima watches that package one day and weeps openly for disappointing her meemaw, that sweet old lady who raised her while her mamma was overseas. WE DO NOT TREAT OUR MEEMAWS LIKE THAT!

And on a final note, Miss Julie, I really liked your polka dot dress . . . until I saw that it had both a bubble hem AND some sort of dust ruffle. You were classy from the boobs up, and a mess from the baby bump down. But we’re getting there! Anything’s better than the yellow jogging suit!

The Husband:

Ronnie took a risk, and now, finally, the risk came around to bite him in the ass. He did not, in fact, take the advice of either myself or my wife to simply slow his roll, at least not to the point that it would have taken the target off of his back. But even if he had completely sat back and let the house evolve organically into different situations, he had caused so many problems during his one week as HOH that I’m not sure if he ever could have recovered.

Although, if Russell had continued to be his hidden ally (which we found out about last week in a bizarre surprise) and not simply reverted back to complete douchery, we might have had something. But since he became the fourth HOH of the house, somebody turned his paranoia volume to 11, and pretty much anybody who was talking in a room where he was not became his enemy. So say goodbye to his alliance with Ronnie and hello to getting in a completely mind-bogglingly pointless screaming match with Chima.

Meanwhile, Lydia just had to lay back and let everybody scream at Ronnie, and she was set. I usually don’t appreciate floating on most reality shows, but I think she and Kevin (especially Kevin) have the right idea in this season of noticing that all the strategy this season seems to have been injected with steroids and methamphetamines, and have reacted by simply stepping the fuck out of the way. Lydia’s only mistakes in the house so far have been letting her temper take over or letting her libido take over.

And while all this nonsense has been occurring, I was aghast to find myself, during the Tuesday episode, turning to my wife and saying, “When did Jessie become a good person?” This was the moment where he and Natalie peeked into the pool room and very nicely and calmly spoke with Ronnie, without even a hint of strategy or pent-up frustration, telling him that they did everything they could to save him and that there is just too much momentum against him. Seriously, when did he stop being a buffoon and start becoming a real human being? My wife says it’s because he lost last year to somebody who was one of the nicest players in the game (and certainly the nicest winner), and that, presumably, he had to rethink his douchery. Believe me, Russell have enough douchery to lap around the entire house for the next three years.

I really wanted to continue posting silly photos of Jessie, but youll have to settle for the face Ronnie is now permanently making having lost the game to someone much better at poker than he is.

I really wanted to continue posting silly photos of Jessie, but you'll have to settle for the face Ronnie is now permanently making having lost the game to someone much better at poker than he is.

But despite all my Ronnie defense, man, it was time to go. I also clearly have missed something, because the back-and-forth between Ronnie and Michele during Thursday’s episode seems to come almost completely out of nowhere. I know that they are not allies, but I have no clue why Michele felt the need to insult him during the Veto competition, why he felt the need to declare that she was the worst human being he has ever met, and why she gave him a final bit of shit during her taped farewell. They have both played each other in interesting ways, and I would have hoped that they would have at least respected each other’s games. Ronnie, you got played and I hope you can deal with that, so no need to stomp your feet like a child when you get caught. But Michele, you are a neuroscientist, so you are by definition a dork, so no need to throw crap around, no need to insult and no need to lie. What in God’s name happened?

And Chima is still worthless. But she’s the new HOH, so it’s going to be at least two more weeks of her worthlessness.

The Wife:

Because I care about what people are wearing, I feel the need to talk to the Chenbot for a second. Miss Julie, you usually dress rather nice for live eviction nights, sometimes wearing a cocktail dress and sometimes looking like a news anchor. That’s all lovely. And Julie, I know you’re pregnant and there’s a part of you that’s intentionally trying to hide your bump by holding your notecards at just-such-an-angle. However, you’re going to need to explain what the fuck was up with your bright yellow capris-and-athletic-shirt look from last night. That was neither up to your usual standards of professionalism, nor did it go with your perfectly coiffed hair. I realize you’re carrying a tiny hooman and that you might not feel like looking really gorgeous every day. I get that you want to be comfortable, but that outfit was a disaster. I could MAYBE have let you get away with the yellow capris with a different top –maybe just a simple white peasant blouse– but altogether it was too much. It looked like you were wearing workout clothes, and that just doesn’t make any damn sense when your hair and makeup look that good. No more workout apparell, okay, Miss Julie? Next week, I expect you to do better.

The Husband:

– I’m sorry, but Casey the Bitter Banana absolutely deserved that eviction. Thinking himself a noble being and a formidable player, he decided to do two things I very much don’t advise: 1.) expose your entire plan, and 2.) act like a total jackass. Oh, poor you, Casey. Things didn’t go exactly as you planned, so you stomped your feet and cried like one of your Floridian fifth graders. I’m sorry, but your ill-advised ego got a hold of your game and never let go, and you simply pissed off enough people to warrant an ousting. There are few things I hate more on this show than the woe-is-my-betrayed-hide guff I get from you and, during last week, Russell. It’s a strategy game, and if you end up on the outside of the house during the first half of the game, you personally did something wrong, and this very much includes your margarita-party-over-more-points bullshit during the challenge. (In the home stretch, it becomes less about your external mistakes and more about your internal ones, but that’s a discussion for another day.) And you know what? There’s nothing wrong with wearing a banana suit, especially one as non-embarrassing as that one. I had to wear a full banana suit my first day at Jamba Juice back when I was in college, and I relished the opportunity to traipse around the Powell Street Plaza in Emeryville jumping like a freak and handing out coupons. It was actually my favorite day at that summer job. So suck it.

-I still simply do not understand the hate for Ronnie from most of the house and the online community. He hasn’t acted a buffoon, he hasn’t acted like a sore winner/loser, and he most certainly hasn’t actually stepped on too many toes. He’s the victim of a terrible smear campaign, when he is doing what everybody should be doing – playing the godforsaken game. He’s using his smarts, he’s keeping his boasts to the diary room and he has 100% succeeded in moving his target onto Jessie’s back. Ronnie isn’t Jessie’s bitch, Jordan – Jessie is Ronnie’s bitch. Is it that Ronnie isn’t as good-looking as Dr. Will, who played a similarly risky game? Are your insults solely aimed at Ronnie’s nerdy looks? Can you look past your preconceived notions about “brains” and realize that he had bounced back admirably from nearly burying himself during his HOH run? It seems not.

This reaaaaaaallllllllly has to stop.

This reaaaaaaallllllllly has to stop.

– Lydia lusting after Jessie = gross. I thought you were better than that, Lydia, but I can understand your brain getting a little scrambled having lived in L.A. for so long. (That’s right. I said it. I lived there for five years, so I can say that.)

– Ohhhhh, Jordan, I understand that, judging from the live feeds reports, you are not nearly as stupid as you are made out to be on CBS. I can understand that. You have a very dark underside, and each episode I come closer to realizing how street-smart you are. But man, what happened during your childhood that would make you appear so completely vapid in regards to any actual education? I’m trying not to chalk it up solely to your extreme prettiness, but it’s hard to find another explanation.

Here are my favorite Jordan quotations from the week:

“I may not be the smartest crayon in the box.”

Jeff: What was that?

Jordan: That was a fart. On your face.

And her best ironic statement of the week:

Casey: They sent Laura home because she wasn’t a sheep. Same with me. I’m not a sheep.

Jordan: I’m right behind you.

– Did anyone see that Russell/Ronnie twist coming? As evidenced from my tirade against Russell last week, I certainly didn’t. After nearly destroying Ronnie’s soul last week, Russell is now in a secret alliance with Ronnie. (Which, of course, became not-so-secret when everybody noticed how chummy they were being. Good job, Aggie.) Oh well. The douche-manchu is gone, and Russell is back to being an unknowing buffer between the jocks and the rest of the house, as evidenced by the best dialogue of the last three episodes:

Casey: On that team, you’re number four.

Russell: [pause] I’m number two.

– I most certainly hope that the gigantic foam diploma (which looks more like a bow-tied crèpe to me) makes it onto The Soup tonight, because that’s certainly the funniest thing that has happened so far this season.

The Husband:

Another look into the crazy world of Big Brother. I feel I must clarify, because while I mentioned in the first round-up that Big Brother was my favorite reality show, I realized that I had already said that about America’s Next Top Model. Both statements are actually true. If we’re talking sheer enjoyment, it’s still ANTM hands down. But Big Brother is my favorite strategy-based reality competition, and it amazes me year after year how much fodder I get out of each episode of this three-times-a-week show. So there you have it.

What’s been going on?

—First, I think everybody should start paying attention to what I’m saying, because goddamn it I’m usually right. Just as I suspected, Ronnie’s game has already 80% collapsed over the last week, and you know why? Because he played too hard too quickly. I know that it’s not very hard to have seen that coming, but man, did I call that shit. Slow your roll, Ronnie. Playing both sides of the house is a great idea, but you have to be quiet about it, up until the point that it’s halfway through the game and people are only then catching onto your plan. But nope, you had to snag HOH and turn the game into a free-for-all. And while I agree that targeting Laura was a good idea, her big mouth made his HOH week utter living hell. It’s not entirely clear whether or not she was using her brains instead of just being a reactionary weirdo, but she out-debated Ronnie on almost every confrontation, and her powers of persuasion really outshone his. The rest of the housemates followed her lead like crazy and just tore into the video game expert. (Even though they did, ultimately, vote her out 8-to-1) Then again, if Ronnie had those breasts, he might be a more convincing person. But we’ll never know, will we?

But hey, I guess Laura’s not that good at arguing, because she still got her ass booted from the house. Why? Because Ronnie learned to keep his mouth quiet and let her bury herself. Hell, as Kevin pointed out, she didn’t even ask her housemates to save her from eviction. I never thought it really had to be actually verbalized, but in such a crazy house I guess it’s just basic protocol.

You want to know how convincing Laura was, though? She got Russell to turn on Ronnie. Ronnie, his ally. But, then again…

— …Russell has done the impossible; he makes me sympathize, ever so slightly, with Jessie. How the hell did that happen? He represents all the worst qualities of a bully, mixing threats of violence with sheer stupidity and unrelenting preening, and it actually makes Jessie seem like a pussycat by comparison. When realizing that he might be backdoored, he began stomping around the house admonishing anybody who was talking strategy, I guess not realizing what show he was on. This is Big Brother, you jackass. Strategizing is what you do. If you don’t have the brainpower to comprehend that, don’t yell at Lydia until she cries. Just go lift some weights until your pecs explode.

You mean . . . LIKE THIS????

You mean . . . LIKE THIS????

But then, suddenly, when he is not backdoored, Russell gets just as angry and starts following Ronnie around the house, taunting him for not putting him up and thus inviting hell on earth. But you know what, Russell? Do you know why he didn’t backdoor you? It’s because he’s your fucking ally! He is literally in cahoots with your clique. Way to go. When Jessie of all people thinks your asshole threats to Ronnie, which in turn makes it so that Ronnie can’t even leave the HOH room without being accosted, are unjustified and mean-spirited, you know you’ve done something wrong.

Sigh. You have embarrassed us in the San Francisco East Bay. As my mother said in an e-mail to me in regards to my last BB round-up, “Russell is so much from Walnut Creek it hurts.”

— On the subject of Jordan, I think she owes Ronnie a big fat apology for calling him a rat. Why she didn’t believe that she was only being put up in order to ensure Laura’s eviction is beyond me, because there was no way the house was going to let her go. Not even with that last-minute conversation about how her and Jeff could potentially be indestructible as a couple. You can deal with that later, because she’s not really a threat to anybody’s game right now, just as Russell wasn’t. Ronnie told her she wasn’t going home, she yelled at him, and then she was kept in the house. Hmmm…you don’t think that maybe Ronnie planned it that way?

—Why in God’s name did Natalie decide to cast her vote to evict Jordan? She just said she wanted to shake things up, but other than that, there was no explanation. It’s going to bite her on the ass, because she clearly didn’t do it to frame somebody else. You know why? Because she doesn’t seem that smart and she clearly didn’t plan it out well in advance. She’s just being contrary, and her shitty lying is going to get her into trouble. (Just like how pretty much everybody saw through her half-assed lie about her age.)

Hooray! Let us all sing the Dan song!

Hooray! Let us all sing the Dan song!

—It was such a treat to have Dan back to host the luxury competition, because he is without question the best Big Brother winner of all time. Even better than Dr. Will. Why? Because he was a sly strategist who knew when to lay back, when to use sudden bursts of power in both persuasion and voting, he dealt with confrontations calmly and wisely, he switched sides without causing waves, he even got [most of ] his enemies to like him after their eviction, and he did it all without being a jerk. He was a sweetheart, a noble player and an all-around nice guy. Why haven’t these people learned from him?

The Wife:
I hate Russell, but I kind of the like the douche-manchu he’s sporting these days.

The Husband:

So there you have it – only a week in and I’ve seen more promising strategy than complete half-seasons (I’m looking at you, X-Factor season aside from Nakomis’ five-finger plan of attack). After putting up Lydia and Chima for elimination, Jessie (the douchiest player to ever douche it up on Big Brother, even worse than that guy who held a knife to Boogie’s fiancée’s throat while drunk that one time) had already gotten his mind turned around through a combination of massages, vague promises of sexy-sex, easily planted seeds of doubt and bizarre outburst of racial slurs, leading to a “plan” for Russell to use his veto on Lydia and having Jessie put Braden in her place.

How the fuck did this happen? The offbeats and the brains (well, just Ronnie really) discovered that Jessie was an idiot and used that to their advantage. All the talking and preening and yelling was just icing on the cake that was Jessie being stupid. It’s as simple as that. Once again, the muscleheaded dope turned the game upside-down not because it was his idea, but because smart people made him feel [temporarily] smart.

Unfortunately, no one can look smart while wearing those pants.

Unfortunately, no one can look smart while wearing those pants.

Whatever. I saw no promise in Braden, and this is aside from all of his shittalking. While I do not subscribe to the live feeds nor have I gotten into this season enough to troll the YouTube pages for shorts culled from the live feed, I do know that within mere days he had already alienated most of his housemates via his aggressive manner and some horribly bigoted statements. If anyone wants to report direct details to me, or to post relevant videos, be my guest. I consider myself a connoisseur of this game (and still think I would make a formidable contestant), so any knowledge is good knowledge.

What are some other thoughts this week?

  • Russell has been letting me down considerably, and is doing a terrible job representing the San Francisco East Bay. Whatever. He’s from Walnut Creek, and while last week I was letting you all know that his hometown excited me since it was near where I currently live, I can know also let you know that most of the East Bay’s “valley” (through the Caldecott Tunnel, or through Highway 4, or just basically anything on the other side of those hills you can see from San Francisco) is full of wackadoos with only some exceptions. Russell is a bully of the worst order, and living near me doesn’t excuse that behavior.
  • Ronnie might be playing his cards a little too publicly, and if he is to succeed in this game, I think he needs to slow his roll considerably. Unfortunately, he is the new HOH, and it’s nigh impossible to stay under the radar in that position.
  • Lydia shouldn’t have lost her temper so strongly, but I still think she’s a.) really cool, b.) a pretty good player and c.) probably my favorite person in the house right now.
  • Chima’s attitude needs to stop.
  • “Technotronics” = Jeff is hilarious.
  • I love TV Squad writer Jackie Schnoop’s nickname for the Jessie and Russell – the Power Tools.
  • Natalie has already disappeared almost completely from the competition. What’s the deal?
  • Jordan’s sudden outburst of an actual personality really surprised me, and I feel I may regret misjudging her so quickly based solely on her looks and her voice. It seems the clique-ness of the season is rubbing off on me.

The Husband:

I love Big Brother, probably more than any other reality show on television, even though I recognize its many technical and sociological faults. And I do want to cover it here, but as it’s on three times a week, and the show is actually defined by the sheer lack of anything remotely “exciting” happening, I’ll just try a weekly round-up.

And how will I do it? Why, in the same lazy way that I covered the audition/Hollywood rounds of American Idol. This means that I’m pretty much just following notes I’m taking during the broadcast and further elaborating.

The newest Big Brother houseguests.

The newest Big Brother houseguests.

So let’s get into it. Who do I like? And why was I so fucking pissed by episode’s end?

  • Michele’s got that cute, geeky Lisa Loeb look that I very much enjoy. However, her lusting after Jeff is semi-obnoxious. I don’t need her letting up her guard just because she has the hots for somebody.
  • Natalie, there is absolutely no reason to lie about your age – saying she’s 18 when she’s really 24 – especially since any true Big Brother fan (and I assume contestant) knows that, except under very special circumstances (like Michelle on the X-Factor season), nobody under 21 gets on this show.
  • Kevin does not like boobs, and I think he’s hilarious.
  • Jordan is a “no” for me simply because I can’t stand to listen to her. And if you follow the Loveline logic here (which seems to work 90% of the time), her childish voice more than likely indicates something horrible happening to her, and that’s a great deal of emotion baggage that I’m not sure CBS is ready to handle right now.
  • Russell, the MMA fighter, is from Walnut Creek, a city less than 20 miles from my current residence and also where my wife went to high school, so he’d better fucking represent the East Bay in the most hardcore way. Yay Area, fool.
  • Ronnie, the video game geek who looks a bit like Ricky Gervais, has a bit of an ego (probably well-deserved), which could get him in trouble, but if he chills out for a few weeks he could fly by to at least the Top 4. He just needs to make sure to not let some of the more jocky types (I’m looking at you, Braden) feel threatened by his assumed intellect.
  • And, of course, nicely tattooed movie FX artist Lydia is awesome so far, snarky enough to be funny but not so much that she alienates me as a viewer. Not yet.
  • The first competition couldn’t have gone more horribly. I tell you this with every ounce of anger I have within me – I absolutely despised bodybuilder Jessie from s10. Egomaniacal, idiotic, unrightfully aggressive and borderline dangerous, he was the last person I wanted to come back into the Big Brother house. But lo, the athletes won the toilet-seat-and-wedgie competition, and I’m stuck with him for probably the next four weeks
You look even stupider than you did last season, and I hope you know that.

You look even stupider than you did last season, and I hope you know that.

If I had my druthers, Brian would have been the one to return to the house as the 13th contestant, followed by the bubbly but not obnoxious Jessica, and Michael (a.k.a. Cowboy), the runner-up from s5 (also known as the season where my mother and I were actually in the CBS audience for the finale, thanks to being two degrees separated from a BB video editor). I dug Michael just fine, but I also have to think about things in terms of fairness, and he already received $50,000 in his season. And Brian (another Bay Area guy) was ousted far too early last season (first one out, actually) after promising that he’d play a very interesting game, one that I would have loved to have seen.

But hey, good on you, BB11, for getting me so emotionally invested in just the first episode. I don’t think any BB premiere has ever incited such rage out of me so quickly.

I hate you, Jessie.

The Husband:

I’m kind of over Desperate Housewives for the rest of the season. Not that it’s bad or anything, but I’m exhausted. Same for Grey’s Anatomy. Private Practice and Chuck did the right thing in winding down last week so as not to overload television viewers with a straight barrage of finales all together in a short period of time. Seriously. I’m ready for Wipeout and So You Think You Can Dance and Big Brother to just kind of lull me through the summer. Enough with all the scripted drama.

Hell, DH is basically just going through the motions now, and it seems that the season’s high point was all the Scavo twins madness with the affair and the nightclub and the fire and Creepy Dave and whatnot, and the rest of the stories are just basically filler. Even Creepy Dave’s stuff petered out after we found out who he was after and why (which, of course, we all guessed), so right now all I’m really looking forward to is his final solution as to what he’s going to do to Susan and MJ, and who’s going to get caught in the crosshairs.

So with that, I’m just going to give you the bare minimum of what’s going on with our “housewives,” because they all just basically reiterate stuff we already know, with one exception.

Gaby: Gaby’s older daughter goes to school with makeup on, so Gaby agrees to show her that beauty comes from within by not wearing any makeup to Carlos’ award ceremony for Latino Businessman of the Year. But when she learns of a photo session at the ceremony for the local paper, she runs into the bathroom and steals makeup from an Asian woman. Gaby is vain. We already knew this. Lesson failed.

Bree: Reverting back to some of the more conniving ways we saw during DH‘s first two seasons, Bree gets Susan’s ex to represent her in her divorce with Orson (which he still doesn’t know about), and is willing to fight dirty to do it. We already know this.

Lynnette: She and Tom follow a book that says that, in order to rekindle their intimacy, they are to have sex every night for the entire month. This proves difficult, which leads to Tom restating that, now that he’s unemployed, he has no passion for anything other than Lynnette. We already knew this.

Kathryn: Using MJ to trick Mike into talking about marriage, she finds out that he’s just not that into getting hitched. Big surprise.

Susan, dont get the wrong idea here. Im gay, but I really, really need a green card . . . so . . . yeah. Marry me?

Susan, don't get the wrong idea here. I'm gay, but I really, really need a green card . . . so . . . yeah. Marry me?

Susan: Okay, here’s some good stuff. Jackson is finally back in town (I hope your head’s all healed up now after that motorcycle accident, Gale Harold), and he proposes marriage, but after Susan embarrasses herself by declaring how much she actually loves him, he lets her know that it’s simply for citizenship, and he’s Canadian and his visa expired six years earlier. (Or six months. I don’t really care all that much how long it’s been.) She agrees, but she’s pissed enough to say that there will be no romance and no sex. It’s strictly business. This, in turn, messes up Creepy Dave’s plan to take her and MJ out for a fishing trip, as she, you know, needs to get ready to get married for a third time and all.

Two more episodes. Just bring ’em on, regroup, and come back with a better season. Because it can be better. Season 1 was genius television, don’t forget, and there’s really no excuse at this point.

But hey, what’s doing down in the vastly preferable world of the Walkers on Brothers & Sisters?

Not a whole lot, actually. Justin gets into a pre-med program in Santa Barbara. (I haven’t done any research, but my wife, an alumnus of UC Santa Barbara and a former employee of a local business newspaper there, informs me that no college or university in Santa Barbara offers a pre-med program. Then again, this is a show where Kitty basically jumps back-and-forth between her home life with Robert in Santa Barbara and the Walkers in Pasadena as if that 90-mile drive were nothing, so it doesn’t bug me.) Nora gets some detective work done in order to find Tommy so as to have next week’s big season finale take place in Mexico. Holly once again emotionally implodes as Ryan The Missing Walker does his own bitch imploding when he learns that everybody is against him, which in turn gets him to quit from Ojai and presumably give up his shares. Kitty is still trying to decide between Alec the single father and her own husband. And Kevin…well…as aforementioned, not a whole lot, actually.

Oh! We did get some Tom Skerritt cameo work as Kitty flashes back on her radio career, which led her to confirm that, yes, William Walker may have driven Ryan’s mother to suicide. Kind of a waste of a cameo, if you ask me, but I guess William needs to make an in-the-past appearance every now and then.

Really, it’s just all set-up for next week, so I’m going to save my energy for that. Thanks for reading this half-assed post.