After two weeks of complete disarray, Thursday’s Big Brother live show served as a return to the normal order of things. The previous HoH (Willie) was removed from power, and in a standard trope of reality show it looks like he will get his comeuppance under the reign of the new HoH. To say that Willie’s reign was a disaster is only half-right. When one looks at the overall picture, it is at best a mixed bag. Willie’s original target was removed, his nominations were kept the same and he survived the week without getting thrown out of the house.
On the flip side? Well, the entire way that he went about things could be best described as a clusterfrack. Willie bullied and bashed his way through his HoH reign as few had before him- the closest comparison to this power trip would be BB11’s Ronnie. Willie blew up alliances, nominated people he was allied with, destroyed a Coach’s alliance between Britney and Janelle and essentially made it easy for a power change to go from the Blonde Ambition Alliance to Chilltown 3.0.
Meanwhile, Mike “Boogie” managed to come out with wins all over. His strongest player is safe and now HoH, his strongest competitor coming into the game is down to one player, his strongest enemy in the house is now partially aligned with him and he managed all of this without getting any blood on his hands. Boogie’s reputation coming into the game was something of a coattail-rider, but he did win All-Stars for a reason. He has demonstrated that when push comes to shove, he really can play this game well.
Looking at the rest of the house, we saw some interesting shifts this week. Joe has turned into a silent power broker, and his loud voice does not betray the ability he has to quietly influence things. Wil has turned into an entertaining houseguest, and his likability has managed to give him some strings to pull. Shane has shown himself to be a strong physical player, and Ian has gone from “eww, the dude is creepy” to “aw, we need to help him.” There are still some non-players in the house (Danielle and Jenn, I’m looking RIGHT at you) but after two weeks of hardcore strategy and double dealing, most of the players in the game are stepping up.
Week One Full Results:
Eviction #2– Kara
Kara went from “highly anticipated” to “lump in the house” very quickly. Her lack of real gameplay was inexplicable, given the stakes. That she never really took a firm hand in her fate gamewise served to be a heavy disappointment, and the ex-Playmate will not be seriously missed.
HoH #2– Frank Coach – Boogie
Frank’s turnaround was huge this week, no question. Turning your fate around in the BB house for the better is a big deal, and Frank showed how strong a player he really is by winning a mental competition tonight. This, combined with his ability to play physically, makes him an early favorite to win the game so long as the power doesn’t go to his head.
Star of the Week – Ashley
The sleepy-eyed blonde became a major power player this week, and barely had to do anything for it. Her vote was decisive in keeping Frank, which led to him winning HoH. Her easygoing demeanor has been shown to hide a good gameplayer’s mind, and her ability to have a voice without being seen as a threat is rare in recent seasons. Added to this is her willingness to go with the flow- her “date” with Ian this week proved to be valuable playwise, and out of it appears to have come a true friendship with the geeky guy from New Orleans.
Loser of the Week – Britney
Normally I would try to make a case here for a game player to have a bad week, but in this case Britney’s week was worse than anyone else’s. As the week wore on, the stress of dealing with Willie’s inability to play any sort of a good game wore her down. The fun, funny player we saw in BB12 was replaced with someone overstressed, worn down by missing her husband as well. One can only hope that the next week is less stressful on the Li’l Blonde Ball of Hate.
Game Move of the Week – Willie’s “Courting” of Ashley’s Vote.
Willie’s gameplay seemed to be based around power and control- and this was rarely more evident than his moves that ended up turning Ashley against keeping Kara. Had the votes stayed the same from Tuesday on, Frank would be doing interviews outside the house. Instead, Willie’s overplaying led to a vote change, a destroyed alliance and a game change in the first week.