“Big Brother” recap (17.12-17.14): Week Four

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This week the Big Brother house was anything but chill. Feeling isolated and defeated, Audrey begins to show signs of abandoning ship and the group wonders what she’ll do next. The #SixthSense continues to scheme, and even though Shelli is emotionally torn and shattered over what to do, the time has clearly come to evict Audrey.

SUNDAY: Nominations/Battle of the Block

As reigning HOHs, Liz and Shelli have to nominate four houseguests for eviction this week. Liz puts up John and James, and Shelli puts up Jason and Jackie. During her speech, Shelli claims that the reason why she’s putting up Jason is because someone came to her and told her that he’s gunning to come after Shelli, so she’s merely watching her back.

After the meeting, Jason and Shelli meet to discuss what this rumor involves and Jason’s shocked to learn that the root of the rumor comes from Audrey. According to Shelli, Audrey’s been telling her that Shelli is Jason’s prime target. Jason is floored. He flat out denies it and it looks like Shelli believes him. When she confronts Audrey about it, Audrey says Shelli was the one who came to her about getting Jason out. Shelli can’t believe Audrey’s audacity—the girl lies, and then to cover her lies, she turns them around and blames them on the person accusing her of lying. She confides in Vanessa about it. This could be masterful BB game play if done a little slicker—but the amount of talking and planting-of-seeds that Audrey’s inflicted on the house is going to throw her out the backdoor.

17BigBrother5.1Vanessa can’t believe what she’s hearing.

At the Battle of the Block competition, “Grunge BOB,” players must run through an obstacle course influenced by ‘90s grunge bands like Pearl Jam, Nirvana, Screaming Trees, Soundgarden and Smashing Pumpkins, to grab corresponding color keys that unlock their “Alice in Chains.” It’s actually completely awesome. In the end, John and James win—so that means Liz is dethroned as HOH, and she plus John and Jason (her nominees) must receive punishment for the week—a boy band called the Wackstreet Boys (fun fact, their various impromptu performances throughout the week have garnered them the attention of the real Backstreet Boys via a tweet!)

WEDNESDAY: Power of Veto

Audrey tries having a private conversation with James about Shelli and Clay. She tells him that, eventually, they’ll have to split them up and that Shelli and Clay can’t be trusted. James says he’s not totally sure why Audrey is coming to him with this info, because he plans to use it to his game advantage and take it straight to Shelli and Clay. There’s a few things to do about this, let it slide, pretend James didn’t say anything to them, or march right up to Audrey and ask her what’s up—which is exactly what Clay does. Audrey tries to soften the situation by asking him if she has a reason to be so paranoid in the first place. He assures her that she’s been saved by them before, so she needs to trust that they have her best interest. She asks him to promise her that Shelli isn’t planning to put her up as a replacement nominee if someone takes Jason down from the block after the POV comp. Clay can’t really tell her definitely that Shelli won’t do that—because the whole point of this conversation is to calm her down. It’s terrible for Shelli and Clay’s game if in the final round, Audrey is running around the house planting more seeds of doubt in people’s minds about this especially clear power couple. Shelli and Clay (aka Slay) are grasping at their last straw with Audrey. While Clay is having his side conversation with Audrey, Vanessa goes up to the HOH room and Shelli fills her in on what’s happening.

Unfortunately, it looks like Audrey’s attempt to vent to Jason and her latest attempt to get through to Clay will fall completely by the wayside. Up in the HOH room, everyone who is competing in the POV competition is discussing how to use their power if they grab the veto. All signs point to Audrey. Shelli cries to Clay and tells the cameras she’s having a really tough time with this—noting that she supports Audrey and everything she’s doing and standing for. In many ways, it’s beautiful that the house has been so accepting of Audrey, but it’s borderline offensive if the houseguests are giving Audrey special treatment when the subjectivity of her actual game play should be the real topic at hand. Has she been manipulative, has she spun her stories, and will she come after every single one of you? Yes, yes, and yes. That’s why we still love her. Maybe she’s played this game hard, but she came in guns blazing, and she’s certainly stirred the pot.

Vanessa tells Shelli that the climate downstairs has changed and that the vibe of the house is no longer “mob mentality.” What she’s validating is this situation that Shell is crying over—imagining herself a terrible person if she is the one responsible for evicting the “first-ever transgender contestant on Big Brother.” Vanessa is trying to say: Maybe that’s true, but the house is ready to wipe their hands clean of viewing it that way. If you recall a couple of weeks back when Da’Vonne was eliminated, she even fessed up to Julie Chen that the houseguests were all apprehensive about eliminating Audrey for that very reason. (But more on this later!) 

In the POV competition, “Saved By the Smell” (in homage to Saved By the Bell), all six contestants battle against each in a memory game where getting the color correct either saves them or sends them up in smoke. Everyone is dressed in their ‘90s best, including our girl Vanessa who’s sporting a very Jessie Spano denim-on-denim ensemble, including a floral vest and side pony! Clay is clearly the Zack Morris (duh), and everyone else is rocking geek suspenders and loud neon shirts. In the end, Vanessa wins the POV and saves Jason from the block! This really makes Audrey pissed. Not only was she not randomly picked to play in the POV comp, but now she just knows that she’s going to be put up. She has another chat with Clay by the pool, which ends poorly because, well, despite all her lies, Clay can be a total douchebag about the way he talks to women, so he continues to berate her and rub in the fact that she’s been a clever con. What they’re arguing about is a conversation they’d had previously (when everyone was huddled up in HOH after learning Audrey was talking mad shit to James) and Audrey was asking for safety. Audrey refuses to admit now that she asked Clay if she would be safe from being a replacement nominee. Clay is blown away—so in a fit of anger, he finally walks away. I can’t help but wonder if on some level, Audrey’s plain and simply getting a big rise out of Clay and loving it.

17BigBrother5.2You can call them #Shade now.

Clay runs up to Shelli in HOH who hears the first end of it, when Audrey follows him up and asks to come in and squash this. Vanessa is standing by, too. Oh! This oughta be good! With a slight smirk, Shelli places on her sunglasses, eyeing Vanessa who is sitting on the other corner of the bed with her own sunglasses on, as per usual. I know they’re the #SixthSense, but suddenly I feel like Shelli and Vanessa are top dogs and should be in their own private alliance called #Shade—nothing more, nothing less.

Now that everyone is seated, Audrey begins to defend herself to Shelli, but the speech seems to fall flat—the scheming has produced a lot of confusion and it’s hard to tell what’s up or down, a truth or a lie anymore. Shelli asks Audrey if she has anything to say to Vanessa while she’s at it, so Audrey decides to rip Vanessa a new asshole and basically call her a master manipulator who’s good at what she does. Vanessa is stunned. All she can do is tell Audrey to stop while she’s ahead. “Are you serious?” she asks Audrey. “Don’t you care about your life in this game?” It’s apparent to everyone now that Audrey is sinking fast, and she’s dragging strong players down with her.

At the replacement nomination ceremony, Audrey doesn’t show up and we see her cocooned in her bed with her hoodie, sunglasses, and blanket covering her. This is BB history: No one has ever not shown up for a ceremony. The houseguests are fuming. Since Vanessa has chosen to use the veto on Jason, Shelli names Audrey the replacement nominee.

THURSDAY, Live Eviction

The big night is here. Julie Chen asks the audience, “Will Audrey show up to live eviction?” It’s a valid question. As we look back on the days between POV and eviction, we can see that she’s been so MIA, the whole house thought she was going to walk off set somehow. Apparently she’s been taking shifts sleeping in the diary room and the Have-Not dental room for hours on end. I think there’s an outside door in the diary room (where the twins exit and enter from) that gives houseguests the feeling that she’ll just send a morse code to production and they’ll allow her to leave. Steve is furious—a self-professing BB superfan, he says thousands would kill to be where she is right now. Jason says that despite his fall out with Audrey, he still stands behind her as a human being and wants her to walk out of this house with her chin and her game held eye.

Knowing it’s probably her last night in the house, the BB cameras take us to Audrey’s hometown to visit with her loving and supportive family. I might’ve cried a little bit during this segment, so it’s a big blur. But, Audrey’s family is adorable—especially her mother, who had a hand in helping Audrey choose “Audrey” as her name. Apparently Audrey asked her mom for input, which seems like its one of the greatest gifts Audrey’s mom could’ve ever asked for. Knowing her family is so proud, they’re also quick to suggest she’s held nothing back in this season and she probably should’ve laid a little bit lower. Something tells me this isn’t the end of any road for Audrey, it just means that life in the BB house was not what she thought it would be.

L to R: Jason, Liz, Austin, Vanessa, Steve and Becky17BigBrother5.3

Audrey has indeed shown her face to live eviction, and she looks beautiful. We know by the looks of John’s Wackstreet Boys garb, that he doesn’t plan on going anywhere this week. Julie shares the news with the gang about the Backstreet Boys tweet—they go wild. And then Wackstreet performs live. Liz’s twin Julia is repping tonight, and her BSB moves are fierce. Johnny Mac and Jason (two other big fan faves) dazzle in all white. So when it comes time to say a quick message to their houseguests, Audrey takes this as an opportunity to thank the houseguests and the world for accept and embracing her with such open arms. She knows this is what the house has wanted for weeks, so she says with gusto, “Merry frickin’ Christmas!” By a vote of 9 (Austin was the only one who voted for John, just to be a cage-rattler), Aubrey leaves the BB house and meets with Julie Chen for a final interview.

In the HOH competition, “Pop ‘Til You Drop,” which looks strikingly similar to that old ‘80s game show, Shop ‘Til You Drop, Jackie is the first to be crowned this week’s newest Head of Household, followed by…Vanessa! Congratulations to V on her second HOH of the summer. Who will be Vanessa’s newest target?

Tweet me @the_hoff, #TeamVanessa to discuss! Tune in Sunday for an all new episode at 8/7 c on CBS, and catch up here with BB weekly recaps every Friday!