A House, Emptied

In the end, there was little real doubt.

After a season where people’s mouths kept getting them in trouble, it was Andy’s ability to clearly get across his game moves and strategies that sealed the deal and earned him the grand prize of $500,000. After playing one of the best social games seen in Big Brother, Andy managed to win when needed once more to earn the final HoH and evict his partner in the game, Spencer. With a Day One promise to GinaMarie that she never denied, Andy also managed to prove a loyalty that showed doubters that he could be faithful to a promise.

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The Endgame Gambit

Making it to Endgame in Big Brother is a remarkable feat, no matter how you get there. The Final Three players are usually entirely in control of the final pairing, and save for some remarkably questionable choices the folks that make it to Endgame can make some sort of case for being there.

Even in Big Brother 15, the three people that remain in the game can make an argument for why they are there. In this article, we’ll look at the argument that each player can make towards why they should be in the Final Two. While ultimately it comes down to the final HoH competition, if there were a case to be made for why someone should make either 2nd or 1st place it would be listed here.

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The Likeability Factor

Trust is a major factor in Big Brother. Previous winners have been across the spectrum when it came to trustworthiness, but the people who could not be trusted were often removed from the game before the final run of competitions. More amusing is when someone who should not be trusted becomes the more trusted person over anyone else. Normally, this happens because of factors such as social gameplay – a fact that bore out once more this week. Andy’s continued existence in the game over Elissa is a reminder that no matter who you are related to or whom you are friends with outside, in the end you have to play all aspects of the game if you want a chance to win Big Brother.

Ultimately, Elissa and Amanda’s departures this week came down to one major factor – a severe lack of likeability.

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Going There

Over 13 years and 15 seasons, many fans have questioned the real usefulness of having Julie Chen as the continued host of Big Brother. While Chen is a well-known fan of the game and the show itself, she hasn’t always been seen as the best host of the show. Many questioned whether if, when the situation called upon it, Chen could be relied upon to ask the truly tough questions to an evicted Houseguest.

Thursday’s show, featuring Aaryn’s eviction, undoubtedly answered those questions in spades.

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Amanda Wins Veto, Saves McCrae – Andy Up

It was Baby Zing-Bot’s first Birthday in the Big Brother House, and to celebrate, a special Power of Veto was played. With the house finally turning on Amanda thanks to HOH Elissa’s budding plan to backdoor her, it was only appropriate that her new target would pull off her first competition win in the game.  Yep, Amanda finally won something, and so, she saved not only herself, but used the power to save her main pizza boy, McCrae, ensuring they’d have at least another week to sneak around, suck face and do the nasty.

With Aaryn as the original target for Elissa’s HOH, now she had the choice of who to put up beside her. GinaMarie, who she promised wouldn’t go up, Spencer, the go-to nomination-seat filler, Andy, he of questionable loyalty, or the returnee Judd.

In the end it was Andy’s flip flopping that landed him on the block next to Aaryn, and with two of the three “A’s” of the 3AM alliance on the block, Amanda and McCrae are trying to save their power player Aaryn, who has shown herself to be a beast in competitions. Andy, however useful as a middle man between the now in Jury Helen’s alliance, hasn’t shown as much competency in competitions and is therefore more of a throwaway member of that alliance.

It all really comes down to the numbers, with three votes needed to evict this week, it’s in the hands of Spencer, Judd and GinaMarie as to who goes home this week. Aaryn is looking like the most likely to be evicted come Thursday, however things can always change in the last hours before a vote – so who really knows?

Parting Shots

How a player chooses to leave and make their final memory known in the BB House is entirely their choice. Some choose a very classy exit, others an excited or joyful exit so as to not get upset. Others, well… Others do not take eviction or exit too well. If one does not believe this, simply look at Jessie’s second departure after the HoH/Juror Return competition ended for her.
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Ebb and Flow

In the last few weeks, the power struggle of the house has been made apparent between Helen and Amanda. The two women had different games, and had mainly avoided targeting each other until two weeks ago. The decision by Helen to finally go after Amanda was one that has had repercussions through the last three evictions, with the next Houseguest to leave making waves and in the process blowing up the game of one of these two powers.

Fittingly, it was the person whose overconfidence finally bit her where it hurt.

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Andy Wins Veto – Doesn’t Use It

So, Andy proved this week he can win a couple competitions, taking the Veto this week home to his HOH room. With Spencer and Jessie being his nominees the chance for making a big move in the game was at his fingertips, but as you’d expect, he played it safe. This season in the Big Brother house the theme seems to be “Don’t rock the boat, baby” and Andy, being Andy, decided to ‘go with what the house wants’ to not upset the balance (Amanda).

Having played ‘both’ sides of the house (Helen and/or Amanda) since the beginning, he has kept both thinking he’s working for them. His true loyalty was tested while he was in power, Helen brought forth a potential plan to backdoor Amanda – he squashed it immediately; it couldn’t happen without him, of course. It also showed that at this point in the game he considers Amanda his stronger ally.

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Power, Consolidated

Now, this is the game we wanted.

Oftentimes in Big Brother fandom, we complain about “game moves” and how people refuse to “play the game.” We end up focusing more on our favorite players and whether or not they can win a popularity contest. Rarely does the House truly get shaken up by a game move, outside of the “twist” that is provided by Production. We as fans say that we want “real game play,” but rarely do we see the types of moves that qualify as such.

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An Honorable Man

In the history of Big Brother, players that are truly honorable and successful at the same time can be counted on one hand. Very rarely does a player make the big money while staying true to their ethics and morals completely – inevitably, a compromise is made. This isn’t a statement of judgement – it is a game for $500,000 and to win it you have to make deals that may go against any statements pre-season that you will play “truthfully and honorably.”

Many want to play this way but few do, and get to Jury. Howard spoke about playing this way and compromised early, and it cost him the prize in the end.

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