Another Thursday (July 24), another elimination in the “Big Brother” house. The outcome of tonight’s vote certainly seems all but assured, but in a world where Victoria managed to take herself off the block, anything’s possible.

Let’s get into Stealth Cowboy Mode and spy in on the housemates….

9:00 pm EST: Julie Chen’s shoulders are here to greet you!

9:01 pm: Previously on “Big Brother”: Cody said “blood on my hands” 300 times, vowed to put Caleb on the block, but backed down thanks to Frankie and Derrick. Sorry, Cody’s brother. Also Donnie. Sorry, Donnie.

9:02 pm: The announcer just said "offish" instead of "official". I hate everything. 

9:04 pm: Brittany, the “Big Brother” Debbie Downer, realizes that Donny is probably the worst person she could be competing with at this point. Elsewhere in the house, Cody is still crying as if he’s just seen “The Notebook” after putting Donny up.

9:06 pm: Frankie tells Donny that he feels the vote will be unanimous and that he has nothing to worry about. Derrick also tries to calm the storm with Donny as well. But Donny still suspects Derrick as the “kingpin” behind Cody’s decision. When Cody tries to apologize, Donny fishes for information about The Detonators. He doesn’t know the name of the alliance, and isn’t 100% sure it exists, but Donny smells a rat.

9:09 pm: Brittany tries to get Caleb to rally people to her cause. I think Brittany is wearing her Bad Idea Jeans. He views Donny as the larger threat to his overall game. Which is true! But also kind of past the point right now. When he tries to sell Brittany to the rest of The Detonators, no one seems to bite, probably because Caleb still thinks The Bomb Squad exists.

9:12 pm: Frankie is called to the Diary Room, where he gets a letter stating that his grandfather passed away. He collapses into Jacosta’s arms as everyone else stays close and offers emotional support. Brittany reads the letter aloud, stating that Frankie’s grandfather (named Frank, incidentally) lost his battle with cancer at the age of 90.

9:15 pm: After some tears, Frankie reveals a smile through the tears while thinking about his grandfather trying to understand “Big Brother,” and how supportive Frank was when Frankie first came out. “In this moment, I feel so supported, and that’s so wonderful,” Frankie tells the camera in the diary room. Amen. Exploitative TV? Possibly. But affecting all the same.

9:17 pm: It’s time for Julie to talk with the houseguests. Why did Caleb take the $5,000? Caleb says that he felt safe enough and needs to take care of some things at home with that cash. Rather than comment on the validity of Caleb’s move, Zach simply states that he’s happy to still have his Germany trip intact. Cody states that the hardest part of his HoH reign was putting a replacement nomination up. Riveting stuff as usual from the live interviews. Yeesh.

9:19 pm: Julie announces that the Have Nots are back this week, and they have been determined via the activity tracker twist announced last week. The four laziest? Nicole, Caleb, Christine, and Derrick. Since we’ve seen roughly 50 shots of Caleb just sitting along over the last two episodes, that isn’t terrifically surprising.

9:20 pm: What do Nicole’s friends and family back home think of Hayden’s mack daddy moves? Nicole’s younger (read: grade school) cousins aren’t fans. “He always tries to make sex with Nicole!” Which…um, yeah. No comment. In general, Team Coconuts (her nickname back home) want her to bring home $500,000 rather than this dude.

9:23 pm: WE HAZ NIGHT VISIONS SMOOCHIES.

9:26 pm: Time for the live voting to begin. First? Last words from both nominees. Brittany is dressed to go home, y’all. “It’s been a great ride,” she says, stating that she completed the “Goal-Oriented” challenge to prove her worth to the group. Donny thanks God, his family, and his girlfriend before saying each housemate has a special place in his heart.

9:29 pm: Quick hit on the votes. Jacosta: Brittany. Nicole: Brittany. Hayden: Brittany. Amber: Brittany. As we go to mid-vote commercial break, Brittany is already crying. Whatever “drama” is, this isn’t it.

9:34 pm: Time to put Brittany out of her misery. The rest of the votes are unanimous. Yawn. This makes me long for the good ol’ action-filled days of chicken-wire challenges.

9:36 pm: Julie officially announces that Brittany is going home. For someone that looked prepared to leave, Brittany seems somewhat shocked at actually hearing the words. As far as goodbyes go, this is a fairly muted one, with no anger, tears, or real emotion in any form from anyone.

9:38 pm: Can we talk about Caleb’s stuffed monkey? I feel like we should talk about Caleb’s stuffed monkey.

9:39 pm: Brittany expected the landslide vote, saying there are players who are too afraid to vote against the will of “power” players such as Caleb. Why was she on the block so often? Brittany thinks continuing the pattern from the week one nominations meant less gameplay damage for those nominating, and suspects going into the house with the second group on day one put her behind the eight ball from the outset.

9:41 pm: After seeing the goodbye messages from the houseguests, Julie brings Brittany’s children onstage. One of them is carrying a soccer ball. Boy, “Big Brother” is just pushing all the melodrama buttons tonight.

9:46 pm: It’s time to crown two new Heads of Household. The game? “Country Hits.” Each round features a country song that describes a competition that has already occurred this season. Two players compete to see who can correctly select which type of competition the song describes: Head Of Household, Power Of Veto, or Battle Of The Block.

9:47 pm: Quick summary of the results: Christine defeats Hayden. Donny defeats Jacosta. Frankie defeats Caleb.  Amber defeats Victoria. Derrick defeats Donny. Zach defeats Nicole. Christine defeats Amber. Frankie defeats Derrick, who intentionally loses so Frankie can see a picture of his grandfather in the Head Of Household room. (Aww. Also? SMART.) Zach defeats Christine, and in the process becomes the second Head Of Household. ZANKIE LIVES.

9:53 pm: The idea of Zach as Head Of Household is simultaneously thrilling and terrifying.

9:57 pm: Back from commercial break, Derrick tells Julie there are things that are bigger than the game, and letting Frank be Head Of Household was absolutely worth throwing the competition. It’s a nice gesture and might prove to be the most important game move this season all at once. Time will tell.

9:58 pm: Fans have voted for Team America to play the role of puppet master and get two houseguests to have an argument at either the nomination ceremony or veto meeting. After all the nice vibes tonight, why not re-introduce more bitchiness, right? I know kindness doesn’t always produce the most dramatic “Big Brother” episodes, but when the show has to manufacture conflict, it just reinforces how staged this all is. Yes, of COURSE this is staged, but why overtly point it out? Given the number of honest moments that poked through tonight, it’s a slight shame.

Looking forward to the Zankie Era of “Big Brother”?