“Big Brother” (17.9-17.11) recap: Week Three

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Now that Vanessa and Austin are controlling the power in the Big Brother house, anything is possible. Will they choose to finally backdoor Audrey like the house has so desperately wanted, ever since she lied? Or will there be another target that makes more sense for their game considering Audrey has been laying so low the past week? Vanessa says she discovered some incredibly useful and exciting info recently—yes, even though Da’Vonne (dearly departed) tried to out Liz as a twin before she left the BB house, nothing has come of the Twin Twist in the ways of anyone’s game. That’s all about to change with our girl Vanessa in charge.

SUNDAY: Nominations/Battle of the Block

It’s the middle of the night in the Big Brother house. If you watch this show religiously, you know that some of the best little gems are uncovered late at night when the houseguests are stirring. Vanessa and Liz are having a bedside talk when Vanessa brings up the rumor that Liz is a twin. After what takes little convincing to get Liz to talk, Liz says, “I’m Julia,” the other twin! Vanessa is freaking out. It’s a great moment because Liz is a fan favorite, and people also love Vanessa as a power player with expert poker face (yep, we totally see now why you’re the international poker queen!) So Vanessa does Liz—excuse me, Julia—a solid and gives her a few pointers on how to blend in with how Liz is in the house. “Straight up, you’re skinnier,” says Vanessa. Julia and Liz have that deep, raspy Miami voice, so she drones back, “I know!” Vanessa also tells her that Liz flirts way more and sleeps more. Hey, just goes to show that not even twins are exactly alike! Anyway, Vanessa has some midnight crawling to do now.

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She goes up to the HOH room to visit with Shelli and Clay. They’re in on the Liz/Julia secret now, too. Shelli has a sorority freak-out on Julia the next morning. “I love y’all,” she coos, because Big Brother is so strategically staged around social game and we as humans love a relatable ally. Here, Shelli can liken Liz and Julia to her sorority sisters back home, because there’s some potential, universal trust that two sisters might have. But I call bullshit. Meanwhile, Vanessa goes and tells Austin about the twist. He’s totally dumbfounded. Vanessa’s reaction is hilarious—she’s rocking a red silk pajama set with a beanie as Austin runs his fingers through his wild mane, perhaps thinking of all the times he’s had flirty interaction with the girls. “Bro. Get in the game,” Vanessa says under uncontrollable laughter. Austin, you dog, you.

It’s finally the moment we’ve all been waiting for—it’s time to see Vanessa and Austin’s HOH room! Vanessa announces to the house: “You guys get to see my hot girlfriend!” Liz is behind her cheering her on saying, “Yay!” Upstairs, we see pictures of Vanessa and her girlfriend, Mel. Sup, Mel! Your girl is killing it. Everyone coos over their baby pics—Austin was an adorable little kid. Their loot baskets are filled and the other houseguests sit and listen while they read their tearful letters. They didn’t air Vanessa’s letter in real time, but if you watched After Dark or the livefeeds, you probably heard a super sweet letter from her family or her girlfriend! Send us details, please?

Notable anecdotes to keep in mind throughout the week: Jason says he’s never talked game with either Austin or Vanessa, so he’s nervous about where he stands. We know he was tight with Audrey from the beginning, but that fizzled fast after she broke his trust. Jeff acts deeply confused about who HOH is. He thought it was just Vanessa. James and Meg are sitting nearby for this moment, and they’re in utter embarrassment over Jeff’s fumble. Dude, there are two HOHs every single week. What game are you playing?

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Now that Julia has outed herself to her alliance, Liz comes back into the house to reintroduce herself to Austin, Vanessa, Clay and Shelli. Once again, Shelli has a sorority freak-out. “We’re sorority sisters! What am I gonna do?” she squeals. Vanessa thinks Liz is Julia at first. It is hard to tell the difference. Liz says that Julia has a fake tooth. There’s also this whole mess about how Liz weighs a little bit more. Of course, like Vanessa says, it’s a crazy thing to be called out on (offensive in many ways), but Liz seems to take the criticism in kind. Austin says their alliance should be called the #SixthSense. The room goes wild. Kinda perfect. So now we’ve got Vanessa, Austin, Clay, Shelli, Liz and Julia.

Finally, it’s time for nominations. Austin nominates Jason and Meg. Vanessa nominates James and John. There’s already an agreement with John to throw the Battle of the Block—again. Vanessa hugs him and thanks him for being a good sport. But he’s also kind of a chump for continuously being this group’s biggest pawn. In the BOB comp “Gronk’s A-maze-ing Foam Party,” the players must go through a maze of foam to get to match fabric that corresponds with “partygoers” clothes—also known as the messiest foam party there ever was. In the end, Jason and Meg win and pull themselves off the block, dethroning Austin and leaving Vanessa as reigning HOH.