With Liane using the HitFix Family Slingbox for the "So You Think You Can Dance" finale, I'm recapping "Big Brother" on Pacific time this week. So far, I've managed to avoid finding out who the hamsters evicted this week and I've also avoided the identity of the departed hamster America wanted to give the chance to return to the game, though half of my Twitter feed was blessing America and half was cursing this great nation of ours.
So click through for the minute-by-minute slog to this week's vote...
9:00 p.m. Julie Chen boasts this will be The Battle of the Season. Or maybe the Battle For the Season? Either way, given the way this season has gone so far, I'm counting on plenty of crying. Is this the most lachrymose "Big Brother" season ever? I know Marlo Thomas tried to teach us all that it's alright to cry, but this has been ridiculous.
9:02 p.m. I really don't want Lawon's delusional decision to put himself up for eviction in the hope of returning with Special Powers. I don't care what else happens in tonight's episode, but that can't stand. Yes, dumbness is rewarded all the time in the "Big Brother" house, but the line must be drawn somewhere.
9:03 p.m. The Chenbot is on Twitter. So far she's not very exciting, but I have high hopes. So far on tonight's show, she seems mighty certain that Lawon is heading toward eviction or something.
9:04 p.m. "This is a miracle," Rachel cackles. "Lawon is on the block and I love it. I LOVE it. If I do get voted out of the house, I have a 99 percent chance of coming back into the game with superpowers," Lawon says excitedly. One can only assume the "Yale" shirt Lawon is wearing in the live segments is meant ironically. Or maybe he's just not good at math? Either way, he's like that stupid kid in your neighborhood who liked to play around with spiderwebs in his garage because he figured if he got bitten by a brown recluse, he'd come back as Spider-Man.
9:08 p.m. Jeff isn't impressed with Kalia's choice. He thinks she's either brilliant or stupid and he's going with stupid. It's time for Lawon to "put on his acting skills" to convince everybody that he hadn't expected to be put up. But Shelly isn't buying Lawon's Sean Penn (in "I Am Sam") impression. She knows something is up. "When he starts lying, his whole vernacular and the way he speaks changes," Shelly points out. Unlike Lawon, Shelly is waaaaaaay smarter than she's letting on. She's toying with Lawon like a cat toys with... ummm... a cat toy. Sorry. Can't be bothered with precise figurative language. I'm still in a post-press tour haze. Determined to get to the root of the mystery, Shelly goes to Kalia who doesn't hesitate to reveal that Lawon volunteered for his fate.
9:10 p.m. "I don't really care about Lawon's performance," says a disinterested Jeff. But Lawonderful isn't the only one who thinks the hamsters are actually the Hollywood Foreign Press and that they might earn a Golden Globe in addition to the big prize. Rachel is playing nice and trying to convince Daniele and Kalia that if she sticks around, she'll be targeting floaters rather than people she hates. An uneasy accord is seemingly reached. "If these girls are actually stupid enough to keep me in the house this week, they're going to definitely feel The Wrath of Rachel," Rachel cackles. Back in the HoH room, Daniele mutters something about wanting to punch Rachel. Meanwhile, Shelly -- who is beginning to get the Puppetmaster Edit -- tells Rachel not to trust the other gals and then promptly goes back to her conversational position with Daniele. Shelly's doing a lot of whispering and she seems to have an untoward amount of power and she's swayed Kalia and Daniele back to distrusting Rachel.
9:21 p.m. Time for a little live chatter. How has the Redemption Island Twist impacted the game? Daniele says that it's changed things a little, but it also hasn't changed things much. Illuminating. Julie asks Shelly about the stress of the game and all of the tears. "This is a pressure cooker and people really do get tense," Shelly says, adding that their goal is to get Adam crying soon. I'm still mourning Adam's lost beard. Of her own tears, Jordan explains that she felt guilty about losing to Adam in the Have/Have-Not competition and that she's been in the Have-Not room for 14 days and that she's feeling "pretty gripey." Jordan has created a marvelous alternative language in her two "Big Brother" seasons and brief "Amazing Race" run. It's not quite English, but it's far cuter than English.
9:24 p.m. Nice! We're visiting people who hated Rachel *last* summer to find out what they think of watching her *this* summer, starting with Ragan, who said many, many appropriately mean things about her last summer. But in a funny (disappointing) twist, it turns out that Ragan and Rachel are best buds now and that he's going to be in her wedding party. Boo. Also buds with Ragan? Matt. What about the lie Matt told last season? Wasn't Ragan unhappy about that? Now, Rachel and Matt watch footage from this season and neither of them is nearly as catty as they should be, though Ragan accurately describes one of Rachel's mood-swings as "cry-bernating." Ragan compares Rachel to the killer at the end of a slasher movie. I'm uncomfortable with complimentary Ragan. This segment has caused me to lose a lot of respect for him.
9:30 p.m. In the HoH room, Kalia says that her biggest challenge as Head of Household has been dealing with the Twist. "I always say that I will jump and grow wings on the way day," Kalia says, which is her way of saying "no regrets." And Kalia is still hoping to mend fences with Jeff and Jordan. She's really, really, really uninteresting.
9:32 p.m. Time for Closing Statements. Rachel misses Brendon and loves him so much. She tells the hamsters that they'll do the right thing and she reminds them about the twist. Lawon has fallen in love with everybody in the house. He also reminds them about the Twist. Yawn.
9:33 p.m. Shall we vote? Jordan votes to evict Lawon. Jeff votes to evict Lawon. No more votes until after we sell things.
9:38 p.m. Porsche votes to evict Lawon. Love the pigtails, Porsche. Daniele votes to evict Lawon, but says she'll probably regret the movie. Shelly adds to the anti-Lawon pile-on. And Adam makes it a shut-out, voting to evict Lawon as well. On the bright side, there's a 99 percent chance Lawon isn't going anywhere.
9:40 p.m. Lawon hugs everybody, but before he can make it out the door, Julie tells him to sit back down. He'll have to battle his way back into the game, but Julie says one of the first four bootees may be returning, which gets a response of slack-jawed shock from Rachel. Geez. Who would have guessed Rachel would be so excited to possibly have Cassi back? Suddenly, Lawon isn't looking nearly so cocky. Daniele is horrified. You would be too if you realized you just opened the door for Rachel and Brendon being reunited in the house once again.
9:42 p.m. Keith, Cassi, Brendon and Dominic are all standing together. Keith and Cassi are shocked that Brendon is there with them. Dominic offers his first-born child to get back into the game. When they hear that they're going against Lawon, they get excited and possibly a little cocky. They must not have heard Lawon's math.
9:48 p.m. Down to business. Who did America vote for? More than two million votes were cast. It's down to Dominic and Brendon and the winner is Brendon. Because America hates me. Predictable.
9:49 p.m. The competition is called "That's How We Roll." Lots of balls are dropped on the course. They have to get balls with the names of all 14 hamsters into a hole in three minutes. With Rachel coaching him on, Brendon gets out to a huge lead. Why the heck was this done in front of the remaining hamsters? I get that the "Big Brother" producers want Brendon back in the game because he and Rachel are good TV, but this really isn't fair. Rachel's barking out ball colors and names like a general. Nobody's helping Lawon at all. Brendon wins easily, as Lawon realizes he just let a bunch of spiders bite him for nothing.
9:53 p.m. Rachel jumps into Brendon's arms. Lawon looks absolutely shell-shocked.
9:56 p.m. Poor Lawon. He doesn't even get to talk to Julie Chen. That's what happens when you roll around in spiderwebs, Lawon.
9:57 p.m. Back in the House, Rachel is giddy and Daniele is brood-y. We're gonna have to wait til Sunday for Head of Household.
So what'd you think of Thursday's episode and the Twist? Was the fix in to reunite Brendon and Rachel? And how stupid was Lawon? And is Shelly secretly running the house?
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