<p>Shelly of 'Big Brother'</p>
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Shelly of 'Big Brother'

Credit: CBS

Recap: 'Big Brother' Thursday - The Second Eviction

Would the new Head of Household shake things up?

It’s Elimination Night on “Big Brother,” people. How upset am I that Leslie Moonves, not Rupert Murdoch, owns CBS? Because after watching the fireworks in Great Britain this past week, I’d rather be watching Wendi Deng host “Big Brother.” That woman does NOT tolerate tomfoolery, y’all. Instead, we’re stuck with Julie Chen pretending that she cares about the lives of those inside the house. Oh well.

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<p>Cat Deeley of 'So You Think You Can Dance'</p>
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Cat Deeley of 'So You Think You Can Dance'

Credit: FOX

Recap: 'So You Think You Can Dance' Thursday - Who went home?

It's Cat Deeley's least favorite night of the week

Now that we’re down to the top ten dancers, all of the elimination episodes are brutal. When the performance show is as strong as last night’s? It’s ten times worse. Still, one guy and one girl must be sent to the big dance cloud in the sky, or wherever it is they hide them until the tour begins. Let’s get down to it!

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<p>Jordan of 'Big Brother'</p>
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Jordan of 'Big Brother'

Credit: CBS

Recap: 'Big Brother' Wednesday - The PoV shakes things up

Jordan has power, but does she use it wisely?

Previously on “Big Brother”: stupid people did stupid things! Yup, that about sums it up. No need to summarize things further. You know the drill at this point. Onto tonight’s episode!

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<p>The 'So You Think You Can Dance' Top 10</p>
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The 'So You Think You Can Dance' Top 10

Credit: FOX

Recap: 'So You Think You Can Dance' - Top 10 performances

The dancers get new partners and all-star help on Wednesday

Hello, dance fans! Liane is busy doing her thing at Comic-Con so I’ll be filling in for her this week, and what a week I pulled: not only is it the first week for All-Stars, but humankind favorite Neil Patrick Harris guest hosts! (Yes, humankind. It is against the nature of our species to dislike him.)

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<p>Kristin Bauer van Straten and Fiona Shaw's back of 'True Blood'</p>
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Kristin Bauer van Straten and Fiona Shaw's back of 'True Blood'

Credit: John P. Johnson/HBO

Recap: 'True Blood' - 'I'm Alive And On Fire'

An entire episode of guys taking off their shirts, with a couple revelations to boot

When we last left the randy, fairy-touched folk of Bon Temps, Jessica was developing a taste for more exotic food; Lafayette and Co. were trying, with mild success, to parlay with Pam over Marnie’s necromantic machinations; Vampire Bill had entered into a duly negotiated and sealed sexual union with Portia Bellefleur; Jason was being hog-tied and raped by unwashed panther women; and Eric’s brains had been rendered into a hush-puppy-like mess -- soft on the inside, fried crispy on the outside -- by a bunch of Wiccans before he got all squirrelly and drained Sookie’s fairy godmother.

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<p>The women of 'Big Brother 13'</p>
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The women of 'Big Brother 13'

Credit: CBS

Recap: 'Big Brother' Thursday - The First Eviction

Who would be sent packing and crying into Julie Chen's arms?

It's been a busy first week for our "Big Brother" hamsters. Rachel put Porsche and Keith up for Eviction. The Regulators were born. Evel Dick went off into the Diary Room and never returned. Everybody in the house conspired independently to throw the Power of Veto, working at hilarious cross-purposes. And, in a daring challenge, the new contestants competed to see if they could accumulate 100 IQ points between them! [The last thing didn't happen. I just wanted to imply that they aren't particularly clever.]

Click through for a minute-by-minute report from Thursday (July 14) night's "Big Brother" elimination episode...

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<p>Evel Dick of 'Big Brother'</p>
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Evel Dick of 'Big Brother'

Credit: CBS

Recap: 'Big Brother' Wednesday features an abrupt departure and the PoV

An exit we knew about last week turns the game upside down

Hey all, and thanks for tagging along as I experience my first season of “Big Brother.” Yes, I’m a newbie to the franchise, the novice of the HitFix hydra covering this latest season of the CBS reality stalwart. Liane and Dan will be offering their expertise on Sundays and Thursdays, respectively, while I will sit between them wondering things like, “Do people really spend the entire season whispering to each other?” and “Dear God, will every challenge be as sexually explicit as that Banana Grab debacle?”

So if you’re looking for me to apply advice learned over the past dozen seasons, well, you might be disappointed. But if you want to see the show through untrained eyes, hopefully this will provide either some insight or at least amusement. Think of it this way: I’m like Jane Goodall, peeling past the brush for the first time to study chimpanzees. Although that analogy probably does a great disservice to Jane. Also, a great disservice to the chimps.

Onto tonight’s episode!

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The cast of season 13 of "Big Brother"

The cast of season 13 of "Big Brother"

Credit: CBS

Recap: The first couple is put on the block on 'Big Brother'

As HOH, Rachel is determined to be smart -- this time

Well, it was about time “Big Brother” threw a really good twist into the game that wasn’t squid-flavored slop, but I’m not sure I’m completely thrilled to have “BB” alumni returning to the house. Okay, correct that. I’m not sure about having Rachel return to the house. I admire my colleague Dan’s ability to illuminate her nails-on-a-chalkboard voice with uPpeR aND loWeR cAse, but I’m just too busy throwing my remote control at the television and covering my ears to follow suit. Needless to say, I could have lived happily without ever hearing that braying, crazy horse laugh again, and the claw marks from dragging my nails down my face every time she was on screen last year have almost healed. But it’s nice to see Jordan and Jeff back, I guess.

Anyway, everyone is SO excited about the golden key! Or, at least the new hamsters are, because they’re all apparently a bunch of lily-livered floaters. They slid off the bananas in last week’s challenge like Vaseline on a warm eel, and I don’t sense a lot of really smart game play in action here. Evel Dick says he’s going to eat these newbies for lunch, and I don’t think he’s wrong.
Porsche, who apparently thinks with her breast implants, tells Keith she wants to team up with the all-stars. Keith thinks she’s an idiot. Well, Keith, that’s what you get when you partner up with the girl in the house you’d most like to bang. She may be thinking with her implants, but what you’re thinking with isn’t too smart, either.
Time to unveil the HOH room. Rachel is SO EXCITED about her HOH room. Evel Dick could give a crap. But he doesn’t say crap. You’d think having people feign enthusiasm while secretly wishing she’d choke to death on her coveted snack collection last year would inspire her to put a damper on it, but no. Rachel is at FULL ANNOYING VOLUME! AND SHE’S LAUGHING! A LOT! Everything is funny to this woman. I wonder if that laugh can actually cause insanity. I may be able to test that hypothesis on myself after a few more weeks.
Brachel talk Botox. He thinks she’s beautiful. She wants to go all Heidi Montag frozen-face. I still don’t understand why these two are together. I keep wanting someone to put together an intervention for Brendon. You can do better, Brendon! Lots of girls have implants! And some of them don’t LAUGH LIKE RABID HOWLER MONKEYS!
Dominic has a plan. He convinces one half of each newbie pair to create a secret alliance. And, because every secret alliance must be named, he dubs himself, Cassi, Keith and Lawon the Regulators. This would be more impressive if this super secret voting block was more than four people. Does Dominic know there are ten other people on the show? I know his mommy mashes his peas for him, but I would have hoped she taught him how to count somewhere along the line.
Evel Dick gets to work. Porsche, believing her glamorous secret VIP waitress skills have gifted her with negotiating super powers, talks with Dick. He promises to protect her and take her to the end. Porsche’s head bobbles up and down. You can practically see her thinking, man, I am SO SMART!
Rachel leaps into the house dressed as a psychedelic cow sponge. It’s time for the have/have not competition. “What is this, space milk mountain?” asks Dewan. Oh, no. Actually, it’s space milk soft core porn movie mountain. This is like Twister, but with grinding and milk. I’m sure this is someone’s sexual fetish, but I can’t imagine who’s. I hope I don’t know them. I’m guessing the crew member who came up with this is a very, very troubled person. In short, the hamsters are divided into three teams of three milky cow spongey people and one milkman. Then, each milky cow spongey person must jump into a lake of milk, run to the milkman, and have him squish them until they’re, um, dryish. This is actually gross. Funny, but gross.  
Kalia wants to win because she deserves it. Daniele doesn’t want to get down to 97 pounds again, which happened last time she was on slop. I’m putting my money on Daniele. She’s motivated, whereas Kalia’s just a bratty pain in the ass.
While Jeff takes a kind of rolling, plank position squish approach, Keith is sorta humpy. He literally looks like he’s trying to penetrate three people in squishy cow outfits. Someday you’ll be able to look back on this and laugh, Keith, but I’m not sure when that day will come.
The Blue team of Dick, Daniele, Jordan and Jeff wins it! So, that rolling thing seemed to work. Humping takes the Green team to second place. The Orange team of Cassi, Kalia, Lawon and Shelly, who seemed to rely on strangling and hopping around, will be eating slop.
They’ll also be sleeping in a padded room. Which has ugly fluorescent lights on all day and all night. But Kalia can deal with anything. It’s the mark of a princess or a queen or something. And she is a princess or a queen or something. Kalia, shut up.
Evel Dick gets back to work. Even though he literally looks like someone I’d expect to see in “Sons of Anarchy” or hitchhiking on the highway to hell, he is a wonder to watch.  Evel Dick decides to work his magic on Adam. He offers to take care of him, and it’s an offer he can’t refuse. I love that Evel Dick is borrowing every mafia movie cliché he can without an ounce of irony. But Adam says he’s coming after Evel Dick. Good luck with that.
Shelly wants Jeff and Jordan to be happy in love the way she’s happy in love with her husband. Aw, shucks. They’re still going to vote your ass out, Shelly.
Rachel is pondering her options as HOH. She thinks Adam is a fan she can manipulate, and she’s scared to give Porsche a three week golden key. Evel Dick assures Rachel and Jordan that Porsche is on their side. But Rachel still doesn’t know what to do! Hmm, last time you were on the show, Rachel, you antagonized people and cackled until you had a target on your back only slightly larger than the Cape Canaveral launch pad. That seemed to work for you. Kidding.
But Rachel isn’t going to make emotional decisions. It’s game play! She just figured this out? I hope Brendon is prepared to support Rachel and her future Botox habit, because I don’t see a really great career path ahead of her if waitressing and topless dancing doesn’t work out.
Nomination ceremony! I know, it’s become part of the tradition of the show, but that weird key disk just has to go. Every time the HOH drags it out it looks like they’re hefting a vacuum cleaner into the middle of the kitchen.
The first duo safe is Daniele and Dick.
The second duo safe is Jordan and Jeff.
The third duo safe is Lawon and Kalie.
The fourth duo safe is Shelly and Cassi.
The last duo safe is… Adam and Dominic.
Porsche is shocked to be put up first. Shocked! Oh, Porsche. Just remember, the glamour of VIP waitressing waits for you. Keith hopes the Regulators have his back. Oh, Keith. Jesus is waiting for you, though I suspect He’s going to want to chat with you about that milk humping thing. Rachel wants Keith to go home, and I suspect Rachel will get what Rachel wants.

Finally, we hear from mastermind wannabe Dominic, who says the Regulators are here to stay and Porsche is going home. I like Dominic, and he’s cute as a button. But seriously, I’m pretty disappointed in the new kids. So far they've proved themselves to be either floaters, terrible players or simply annoying. I never thought I'd say welcome back, Brachel, but... wait, I'm still not saying that.

What do you think of Rachel's decision? Do you think Porsche is going home? And do you think the Regulators have a shot?


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<p>Joe Manganiello of 'True Blood'</p>
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Joe Manganiello of 'True Blood'

Credit: HBO

Recap: 'True Blood' - 'If You Love Me, Why Am I Dyin'?'

Everybody wants to know what the heck happened to Eric

More revelations: Sookie smells not only like “freedom,” but also wheat, honey and sunlight -- which, according to vampires, has a smell. In case you’ve been glamoured sometime in the past week and forgot all about what the witches have done to Eric to make him talk like this, here you go: They joined hands, summoned some necromantastic force and fried Eric’s brain. Now Eric can’t remember who Sookie is, only that she smells like the items listed above.

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<p>Cassi of 'Big Brother'</p>
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Cassi of 'Big Brother'

Credit: CBS

Recap: 'Big Brother' Season 13 Premiere

Julie Chen introduces the new houseguests to some notorious favorites

Welcome, Friends... It's premiere night for "The Chenbot and the Merry Hamsters," better known as "Big Brother 13." Before continuing this this recap, a couple words on HitFix's coverage of "Big Brother" this season:

In order to maintain collective sanity, we're splitting recapping duties into three nights done by three bloggers. I'm taking Thursdays, because Thursdays are results nights and results nights lend themselves to minute-by-minute recaps and as I'm profoundly lazy, I like that. Liane Bonin will be handling Sunday nights. And Monkeys as Critics regular Ryan McGee will be subjecting himself to the amusing experiment of his first season of "Big Brother," recapping the Wednesday telecasts. All recaps will be in the Monkeys as Critics blog, rather than asking you to seek them out through different corners of the site.

And with that... let's go see what Julie Chen and her perpetually uncovered shoulders have to say about the new season of "Big Brother"...

Recap: 'Big Brother' Season 13 Premiere

9:00 p.m. ET. Oh gracious. Julie Chen's shoulders are covered. What am I supposed to do with this information? Down is up. Up is down. Dogs and cats are cuddling together. This truly will be a "Big Brother" season unlike any other!

9:01 p.m. "Dynamic Duos have ruled 'Big Brother,'" Julie reminds us. It turns out that even the new players will have to play the game with a partner, a partner they have to select on-the-spot.

9:02 p.m. Let's meet our hamsters, including Cassi, who receives her key in a stylish bathing suit. Team Cassi!

9:03 p.m. Dominic is an adrenaline junkie, but he also lives with his mom. He likes his adrenaline thoroughly mixed in with his mushy carrots and apple sauce. Cassi is a model and she describes herself as a guy's girl. If that means "a girl guys think is hot," I'm inclined to agree. Lawon calls himself "bold." If that means "setting the cause of small screen racial representations back by 35 years," I'm inclined to say "DYNO-MITE!" Keith is a deacon and a youth minister, but he spends all of his free time chasing tail. Ummm... Good for him. Shell's philosophy is "Look like a woman, act like a man and work like a dog." And Adam becomes my immediate favorite by declaring himself a huge fan of "90210." I assume Adam's talking about the original "90210." Kalia describes herself as "a real-life Carrie." She's a blogger and insists she's, "like, really good with words." Kalia should be warned that I don't much like the fictional Carrie and I'm not instantly warming to the real-life version. Porsche is "a VIP waitress." Frankly, if you name your daughter Porsche and she *only* becomes a VIP waitress, she's won the legitimate vocational lottery.

9:06 p.m. Keith packs his Bible. Lowan packs his afro wig. Kalia loves sex. Dominic is a virgin and doesn't plan on having sex, but he'd be happy to have an older woman to cook and clean for him. Adam doesn't like people who are too religious. ACK. This is too much information. Hugs are exchanged and everybody heads off for "Big Brother."

9:07 p.m. The hamsters see each other for the first time. They can ogle, but they can't talk. They also may not be able to count, because Julie has to point out that there are only eight of them. Or, as Dominic's mom would explain it to him, "10 little piggies, minus two little piggies who went to market."

9:08 p.m. Dominic, Shelly, Porsche and Lawon enter the house first. "I am just so HAPPY," the excitable Lawon gushes. "I've gotta be honest, 'Porsche' sounds a little bit like a stripper name, but she seems cool," admits Shelly.

9:09 p.m. Adam, Kalia, Keith, Cassi enter. "The Lord is my Shepherd and he knows what I want," says Keith, looking at his summer flock. Keith and I have different ideas about spirituality. Then again, *my* God hasn't given me Cassi and Porsche as summertime playthings. We get our first weird phobia of the season: Kalia doesn't like hair. 

9:10 p.m. Porsche admits that while her personality is real, her breasts are not. Thanks, dear. We'd... guessed.

9:11 p.m. It's math time. They're counting glasses and beds and other random things around the house. "I'm gonna take these people, I'm gonna use 'em up and I'm gonna spit 'em out," Adam says, looking at his rivals.

9:11 p.m. Keith begins by lying and saying that he's actually a matchmaker. He admits his weakness for women, but not his healthy appreciation of Jesus. Adam isn't just a fan of "90210," he's also a big fan of bacon. Team Adam!

9:13 p.m. Keith loves God and God has blessed Kalia with "puppies." Awww. Puppies. Wait. He's talking about her breasts? Grow up, man. They're booby-melons.

9:13 p.m. Porsche's immediately taken with Dominic, who's everything she looks for in a man (she doesn't know yet that he's not sexually available unless she first helps him design a Halloween costume). Porsche's Big Lie is telling the houseguests that she's a student. She's afraid they may think that her life as a VIP waitress is too glamorous. Gracious, Porsche. A student? Why didn't you just claim to be an astronaut or Rihanna?

9:14 p.m. Cassi's Big Lie is to say that she's a stylist's assistant. She doesn't want the stigma of being a model attached to her. Yes, she says "stigma." Not bad, Cassi. Team Cassi, again!

9:18 p.m. Come on, Julie. Tell me who the other three couples are. 

9:18 p.m. Not just yet. Julie sits the houseguests down and tells them to expect the unexpected. She reminds them that dynamic duos have ruled the game and then tells them the first twist: They're about to get to choose their partners. If you win Head of Household, the player and his or her partner will be safe. And instead of nominating two players for eviction, they'll have to nominate one partnership.

9:20 p.m. Keith had planned on aligning with the women and calling themselves "Keith's Angels." He'd been planning on running the game. Oh well. Keith declares his intention to woo Porsche, who admits she might be sad to go against Keith and his outfit. "You're not picking a prom date," Dominic grumbles. Shelly and Cassi form a partnership based on shared Southern heritage and, um, other stuff. Adam picks Dominic, who is too scared of the big guy to say no, which leaves Lawon with a less-than-eager Kalia.

9:22 p.m. Julie promises that "the twists are far from over" and warns that they aren't the only pairs playing this game. But she won't tell them anything else. They don't know what Julie means, but they vow that if All-Stars walk in, they're all going to stick together.

9:24 p.m. The doorbell rings. Oh God. Rachel and Brendon walk in. They're engaged now. "BrEndOn took me OUT on a hOt aIr baLOon ride," Rachel reveals. Oh, Rachel. how I've not-missed you. Kalia thinks Rachel's breasts should be their own houseguest. Adam is not pleased. "I'm bACk, bitchEs. I'm bETTer thAn evEr," Rachel promises. Shelly doesn't do a very good impression of Rachel's laugh, but I'm sure we'll hear the real thing plenty.

9:26 p.m. Everybody is MUCH happier when Jeff and Jordan walk in next. Even I'm content to see them again. Lawon is especially happy to have them back. Shelly describes herself as "star-struck." Jeff and Jordan are still together after a year and a half. Or that's Jordan's version of the math. Jeff thinks it's closer to 21 months and takes the opportunity to make fun of her. Good times. "I'm freaking out big time," says Dominic. Oh Dom, surely momma said there'd be days like this.

9:30 p.m. The doorbell rings for the last time. Who will it be? It's Dick and Danielle. If you thought Shelly was star-struck before, she's utterly agog at Evel Dick's appearance. But she's not the only one. "It was like Tori Spelling walked in the door," Adam says. "My mind is like a Twizzler," says the confused Lawon. Gotta love that Dominic has no clue who Dick is and instantly assumes that Danielle is his girlfriend. 

9:32 p.m. Danielle is a brunette now and Keith is ready to ditch Porsche for Danielle. [Is nobody gonna mention that Evel Dick has been living HARD since his "Big Brother" win? It's like his face was run over by a cement mixer. Also, I resent having to remember that it's "Evel" Dick and not "Evil" Dick.]

9:33 p.m. Evel Dick introduces himself to the houseguests as "the only winner here." Jordan is offended. Or Jordan isn't sure if she ought to be offended. "Dick makes me feel like chopped liver and I hate chopped liver," Jordan giggles. It turns out that Dick and Danielle haven't spoken in three years. Or at least that's what they're saying and why would anybody ever lie to their fellow houseguests on "Big Brother"? Jeff, to his credit, doesn't fully believe the feigned tensions. 

9:38 p.m. There are bananas everywhere and the first Head of Household challenge is appropriately titled "Going Bananas." The task? Each player has to hold onto their bananas for as long as possible. Wasn't last year's first challenge all about weiner-clutching? "Big Brother" is not a production that rewards subtly. Of course, each two players are clutching a single banana, forcing some unexpectedly Kama Sutra-y positions. "This is very awkward having my daughter's ass in my face," Dick cracks.

9:40 p.m. They get hit by great gouts of chocolate, prompting Cassi to ask, "Is it edible?" First to go out is Shelly, who claims that she and Cassi decided they don't want to win, because they don't want to be seen as targets. Out next is Jordan. Jeff notes, "Jordan is first to fall off my banana. Big shocker." After perching with his butt on Porsche's head, Keith goes out, followed by Cassi and Lawon. Rachel's beginning to get cocky about her position as only Rachel can.

9:43 p.m. Adam falls and has to pray to "the Banana Gods" for Dominic's success. Jeff goes down. Dominic falls. Brendon topples. "I'm riding that banana like a bucking bronco," says Last Man Standing Dick. After Kalia goes down, Porsche's the last Newbie left. "It's all well and good riding a big banana and then you get shot with whipped cream in the face," Rachel says.

9:45 p.m. Porche and her pixelated thong goes out next. It's down to Rachel, Danielle's thong and Dick. Deal-making begins. Rachel promises to protect Dick and Danielle. She swears. And the Donatos go out. Our first Head of Household for the summer? Rachel. "nO onE cOMes betwEEn me aNd MY BANana," Rachel says, while Brendon says he'd marry her today. Adam is growly. But Julie promises another twist is coming.

9:51 p.m. One last twist... oh give me one last twist. It never felt like this... Oh give me one last twist.

9:51 p.m. Being nominated for eviction this summer will be both a blessing a curse. The Big Brother Golden Key will go to the member of the targeted partnership who isn't evicted. That Golden Key is a ticket directly into the Top 10, which is a pretty big deal, at least for a few weeks. "That's crazy," Rachel says. "I'm plotting against Danielle right now," Evel Dick tells everybody. 

9:54 p.m. "It's bound to be an exciting summer," Julie Chen says, before cutting to a long clip package that appears to be almost entirely bikini shots. Suddenly I'm not missing Britney from last season nearly so much.

9:55 p.m. We return to the House for a few seconds with Jeff trying desperately to explain The Golden Key to Jordan. It's going to take more time than we have...


Sound off, fans. What do you think of the new hamsters? And which of the returning hamsters are you happy to have back? And two questions about the Golden Key: How do you expect it to impact the game? And will Jordan ever understand its ability to impact the game?

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