We're a little disappointed that "Big Brother" didn't work some kind of Fourth of July theme into Wednesday night's Power of Veto competition, but at least they really brought it with a complicated five-round match.
It's a little surprising they missed this opportunity because "BB" usually loves to ham it up with over-the-top costumes and set designs for their competitions. And while there was plenty of ham in this episode, it wasn't the kind we were expecting to see, and it definitely wasn't the kind Faysal wanted to see.
As the recipient of the "least trending" Crap App, Faysal had to eat a delivery of ham every time the doorbell rang. The problem is there was a lot of ham in those deliveries. At least "BB" respected his religion enough to give him vegetarian ham, but that was worse in its own way.
Sam scored the Power App, and revealed to Tyler that she has it. To his credit, he didn't immediately tell Power Six about it. Honestly, we're not sure how committed he is to this alliance. He was already Head of Household when they approached him, and so it probably looked like an easy choice to make.
He did stay true to them when both Swaggy and Sam came to him with the same replacement nominee choice. Swaggy has been lobbying hard for Angela all game long, and Steve even joined in on targeting the fitness model. The problem is that neither of them know Angela is in the "Level Six" alliance with Tyler, so there's no way she would go up as a replacement.
Instead, he lied that Bayleigh could go up as a pawn since no one would vote for her. What they don't know is that Level Six would totally evict Bayleigh, solely because it would hurt Swaggy's game and knock him down a few pegs. Tyler is playing a very strategic and smart game, but we're starting to worry if he's playing it a little too hard a little too soon.
There could be social fallout to all these lies he's spinning. Telling Steve he's safe when he's clearly Tyler's target isn't necessarily a problem if Steve goes. But Tyler is telling other people who will be staying, so what does that say about his integrity? We'll have to see how Tyler not-in-power handles things. So far, we're still impressed overall with his game.
We're going to run this season like you'd run a department store. Each product, or celebrity, may have come in with equal value, but pretty quickly you start to see that certain ones aren't working. First, you try discounting them to see if they can turn things around and become solid performers again. But if that doesn't work, it's time to put them on clearance so you can sell them out (the door). With that said, let's take a look at our inventory, ranked from our strongest performer to our weakest ... after we spotlight some wonderful items in stock.
The episode was framed around this impressive five-part competition. Right away, we knew we were heading into fresh territory with "Big Brother" when there were genuine live snakes in the first round. Usually, "BB" has the production value of a second-grade play. If this is a sign of improved production value and challenge complexity for the twentieth season, we're here for it.
For the second episode in a row, Swaggy C took a blow to his massive ego, and this time he could scapegoat no one but himself. With his girl Bayleigh looking on and rooting for him to keep her butt off the block, he absolutely froze in the freezing water, losing that round badly.
It was nearly as painful as watching Scottie, who was fighting for Steve, fail to get a single tile out from under those snakes. While Sam was just reaching in there and gently tossing snakes around to get her tiles, Scottie couldn't muster up the nerve to reach in there at all. There's a reason these are challenges. You've got to be willing to challenge yourself.
In the end, it came down to HOH Tyler and "hambone" Faysal, with Tyler agreeing to throw it to Faysal. Again, he's playing some strategy here in not trying to look like too much of a threat by taking both. A win for him wasn't guaranteed, but by assuring he didn't win, people won't be looking at him during a week he can't even play in the HOH comp.
Tyler (even) is still looking pretty at the top of the house, even though he's playing really hard right now. We're keeping an eye on any potential fallout from Thursday's live eviction, but no one seems to be gunning for him right now, and he's secure in the house's power alliance.
Angela (even), Brett (even), Kaycee (up 1), Rachel (even) and Winston (even) have managed to keep their six-person alliance with Tyler a secret, putting them all in power positions in the house. Especially since Swaggy's alliance keeps telling them everything going on.
Faysal (up 6) suffered no social fallout from scoring the Crap App, and then proved himself a strong competitor by taking the veto. At this point, he seems to have the respect of Level Six, even though he's on the outside of it. Keeping Tyler's nominations the same goes against what his alliance with Swaggy wanted, which could show that he's already cutting ties there.
JC (down 1) was a non-entity this week, but everyone seems to think everything he does is adorable, and he's using this to his advantage in the game.
Scottie (down 1) slipped into the discount section after his deplorable performance in that POV comp. Hopefully it was just the snakes, or he might find himself an easy early target, seeing as his only ally is the guy likely going home this week.
Sam (up 2) is doing better now that she's not so bitter. America gifting her the Power App certainly helped, and having the ability to save herself is enough to keep her off the clearance rack. Tonight she said it was just a "chance" to come back in the house, so that's not as good as a guarantee, but it's better than what Steve doesn't have ... which is a chance at all.
Haleigh (down 2), Kaitlyn (down 2) and Rockstar (down 2) remain in a poor position because they are allied with Swaggy. Other than this, they're doing nothing in the game good or bad, so there's still hope.
Bayleigh (up 1) is hurting her game by association and showmance with Swaggy. He's playing the most publicly aggressive game, and it's a shame. He's way too cocky, but he doesn't have terrible ideas. If he had any subtlety in his game, he might have a shot to go far.
Swaggy (down 1) showed cracks in his competition prowess with his water failure, and he's already the biggest target of the Level Six alliance. They took the easy route this week, but how long are they going to let him try and control the game from the sidelines if they stay in power?
Sam (even) is 10 years older than almost everyone else in the house. If you don't believe age-ism and racism exist in this house, you're missing the point of "Big Brother." It's a microcosm of America, and every -ism you can imagine exists out here, so of course they get in there, too.
OVERHEARD IN THE CHECKOUT LANE
"What are you thinking about?" --Swaggy"Just, like, stuff in my head." --Bayleigh (aptly defining what thinking is)
"Do you think we should detach ourselves to save our games?" --Swaggy (showing he has absolutely no game with the ladies)"That really hurt my feelings. It's unfair for you to be, like, 'Oh, we need to distance ourselves now.' I feel like the damage is done." --Bayleigh (her feelings for Swaggy are complicated and disrupting both of their games)
"I know Sam actually has the power, but nobody else knows that. So I can pretend anyone has it and that can be a good enough excuse not to put them up." --Tyler (playing a savvy game)
"I"m trying to get the least amount of blood on my hands. No matter what, Sam is going home, and I know that for a fact." --Tyler (not realizing that lying this big could put blood on his hands, and jeopardize his game next week)
"Screw you, Tyler. You're a liar and your word means absolutely nothing in this house." --Bayleigh (somebody sees him)
"VimeBro Studios? Should I be competing in this?" --Winston (doesn't he realize "bro" is not a compliment?)
"I'm absolutely ashamed that I'm a coward and couldn't help Steve." --Scottie (unable to touch a single stake, thus losing the first round of the POV competition)
"You need to start realizing what the hell to do. 'Cause people on our side are starting to think that you ain't about it. And that's the side you need to be on." --Faysal (trying to convince Tyler he'll keep nominations the same ... but that was vague as hell, bro!)
"These things straight up taste like vomit, like dirt and like dog crap." --Tyler (tasting gross sodas to match flavors in the POV competition)"Mmmm, not ham." --Faysal
"This is the veto meeting--" --Faysal"Hamazon delivery!" --Big Brother (a perfectly timed interruption)
"Big Brother" airs Wednesdays and Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET and Sundays at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.