The Final 4 battle it out in a luxury competition for $10,000 an one of them score the final Veto of the season, setting them up to choose who joins them and Nicole on finale night.
It's all coming down to the wire in the "Big Brother" house and it looks like all the stress and tension of the past 89 days is finally starting to wear down our resident deal-maker.
Cliff has been relentlessly making extremely aggressive deals with Holly and Michie in an attempt to further his game. And now, he's making deals that are redundant to existing deals and only further causing problems for himself.
Primarily, that's because he has no idea that Holly and Michie, in particular, have no intention of honoring any further deals to either him or Nicole. So while Cliff doesn't realize it, this is definitely the most important Veto competition of the season. The winner, who guarantees their spot in the Final 3 with that victory, determines who advances with them and Nicole.
In other words, it's so much more very duo for themselves than Cliff realizes. It is absolutely bizarre that he would believe Michie would ever turn his back on Holly. At this point, simply based on his competition prowess, they stand the best chance of sitting Final 2, and it's all Cliff's fault.
Nicole saw right through Michie's lies when he threw Tommy under the bus. She had her chance at that moment to take out Holly and neuter the showmance, but she deferred to Cliff, who foolishly believed Michie would be a man of his word and honor their Final 4 ... even after Michie had just laid into them and lied about Tommy.
It looks surely to be a $500,000 mistake for Cliff, and may well be that for Nicole, as well. And Michie, who has run the back half of this game, will walk out to the confetti with his showmance on his arm.
This was primarily a mental competition, with the HouseGuests running around the house and trying to identify how many things had been changed. There was a slight physical element, too, as the first person to buzz in with the correct answer won (or if no one was correct, closest answer and first in won).
This one was neck and neck and neck between Michie and Nicole and Holly, but Michie buzzed in first and continued building his resume. He also scored a cool $10,000, which will look better and better next to the $500,000 he seems almost assured to win in a week's time.
Deals on Top of Deals
We're really starting to worry about Cliff and these deals he keeps making. Tonight, we saw him make a totally unnecessary deal with Holly that only further alienated her from him. He already had her agreement to throw the Veto, but he decided to modify it and grant her "permission" to play under the auspices that she would take him to Final 3 over Michie.
Maybe it's because we know more than he does -- that Michie and Holly are disgusted with Cliff and Nicole and lying to their faces with no intention of honoring any deals made -- but he really looks like he's trying way too hard here. And he's actually scoring the opposite result of what he's attempting.
At another point, Cliff decided to clear up any misconception Michie might have had that Cliff would take him to Final 2. See, Michie had said he would take Cliff, but Cliff needed to make it clear he'd already promised to take Nicole to Final 2 if he got there. What are you doing, Cliff? What game is this?
This isn't "Big Honesty"? Cliff is sill operating under the assumption that he and Michie are playing a game of integrity (to a point) and are men of their words. He may be attempting to be just that, but Michie is most definitely not.
Honestly, at this point, if Michie or Holly win Veto, it would take a miracle of epic proportions to save Cliff. Kind of like it was going to take a miracle to save Holly last week, and that miracle came in the form of Michie ranting and raving and preying on Cliff's honor and honesty and integrity (and lying about Tommy).
And yet, we know that if and when Cliff tries the same tactics with Michie, it will only enrage him more. Michie has set himself up as some sort of righteous victim of Cliff and Nicole's betrayal (which they did not go through with) ad it has given him carte blanche to do anything and everything in this game. It's remarkable what he's capable of with this self-justification.
When it came time for the veto competition, this one was brutally mental and physical, involving knocking down face tiles with a giant slingshot to answer three questions. There were two effective strategies in play. Nicole decided to play it slow and accurate, focusing on hitting the right tiles and she got through the competition very quickly.
She's proven she's capable of beating Michie in this type of competition and that she's a stronger competitor than many people think.
Michie then came out with a strategy of going as fast as humanly possible and dealing with the mental mistakes through speed. And he made a lot of mistakes along the way. In fact, he was beating himself up, getting angry and sad before he even found out the results.
And then he won. That's two competitions in the same night. At this point, the only comps he seems to lose are the ones he's not allowed to play in, like this most recent HOH. Is he just going to win his way to Final 2 and bring Holly with him? If so, what happens then?
On paper, he's played the best game. Tommy says he's not mad that Michie lied to get him evicted. But now he fully intends to go back on his word to Cliff and send him to jury. Will two betrayals and lies in a row start to build a bitter jury, or will they continue to respect the game? We've seen juries go both way. For the most part, this one seems to respect results, so he'll probably be fine.
Michie is playing a pretty petty and ugly game right now, but it's not going to matter. For all of his talk about it being a game, he made it very, very personal and it looks like he's going to carry this grudge to finale night. And yet, unless Cliff (who's probably heading there) can create a bitter jury, he's going to win this game for his efforts. Aside from his behavior (which was problematic for other reasons earlier on), Michie has definitely created a winning resume. We'll see. Grade: A+
Holly is probably going to ride Michie's coattails to finale night. And once she gets there, she actually has a stronger case than she may realize. Especially, if Michie continues to behave abhorrently in his final days in the house, lying and betraying anyone and everyone to advance. It really depends on what the jury wants to reward. Michie is a beast, but Holly has played a decent and more honest game. She has kept her word in a more visible way than Michie of late (by throwing HOH) and sometimes juries reward the player who managed to get to finale night with more integrity. Look at Paul Abrahimia's losses. Grade: A
Nicole is seeing her game crumble around her thanks to her alliance with Cliff and the terrible game moves he's started making. And she's backing his plays and letting him call these terrible shots over and over and over again. At this point, she needs to win her way to finale night. If she gets there, she may well be able to argue a victory (especially with a late-season victory run that helped her carry Cliff to Final 4 as well), but that's if she can stop the showmance in her way. Grade: C-
Cliff has effectively blow it for two reasons. He does't trust Nicole's gut that Michie had turned snake on them even before Tommy's eviction, and convinced her to keep Holly in this house. And now, he's gone on the deal warpath only stoking more and more fury in Michie with each attempt to save his game. Michie's made up his mind what he's going to do. We suspect no matter what Cliff says, Michie will just see it as further justification that he's right. He's always looking to justify his decisions in the game after he makes the decision. Cliff has been giving him all the reasons. Grade: D-
"I'm really trying to stay positive right now because that nomination ceremony should have been mine, because this HOH should have been mine, because I should not have been forced to throw it. Did I just make a $500,000 mistake by sticking to my word?" --Holly (yeah, but that doesn't mean you definitely would have won)
'Holly agreed to throw this Veto competition. What if we talked to her and said she has full permission to play as long as she agrees to take me?" --Cliff (going a little overboard with the deals, there, as the original deal already secures your safety ... not that Holly is honoring it)
"Would you be okay -- full permission to compete with the agreement that if you won, you took me along?' --Cliff (to Holly)
"Wow, um--" Holly (totally offended and disgusted)
"Are you kidding me? Now that want me to go ahead and gun for the Veto to ensure Cliff's safety and screw Michie over." Do you really think that I'm the kind of person that would do this?" --Holly (in DR)
"They must be actually losing their minds." --Holly (about Cliff and Nicole)
"Before the vote, we agreed if I took you to the final two, you would take me to the final two. But here's the deal. That was not reciprocal. I've made a promise to Nicole I woud take her to the final two. And that's why it's been killing me all night long, because when you agreed to take me, I wasn't agreeing to take you." --Cliff (to Michie ... Cliff, what is you doing?!?!)
"I don't know what is going on with Cliff. He's not himself. He's making hasty deals and he's not thinking things through. I feel like I'm in 'The Twilight Zone.'" --Michie
"I'm very upset that I didn't win the $10,000, but hey, I think it's a nice consolation prize for Michie when he walks out the door this week. No that's so mean, that's mean, don't be mean, I'm not being mean, yes I am, stop. Okay. Sorry. Is that horrible of me? Am I a horrible person?" --Nicole
"I'm sorry, Cliff." --Nicole (after losing POV -- she is a better gauge of people)
"We're final three." --Cliff (he is not)
"I'm going to finale night. And Holls is coming with me." --Michie (after POV win)
"I'll never turn my back on you." --Michie
""I would have never turned mine on you." --Holly
"I know, that's why you're coming with me." --Michie
"I don't think he's gonna flip. I really don't." --Cliff (too much trust)
"Oh god, that's what scares me." --Nicole (just enough cynicism)