The Head of Household is trying to do a little housecleaning of the problem individuals, but all these powers in play are spreading “Chaos” and “Panic.”
Even after evicting three people of color, racism continues to rear its head on "Big Brother," and mostly coming from the mouths of the same two individuals — the de factor leaders of the Six Shooters alliance and essentially the leaders of the whole house at this point.
And yet, not a single one of those comments has yet made it to air on CBS, leaving live feed watchers wondering if and why the network is protecting Jackson Michie and Jack Matthews. The latest insult was captured on the live feeds this past Monday and CBS is fast running out of time to put it onto the show and in context.
The moment appears to have occurred after the events of tonight’s episode, but also in direct response to what went down at the Power of Veto competition.
Already, Jack and/or Michie have been involved in incidents where Latina Jessica Milagros was called "consuela," the n-word was possibly used in relation to African-American David Alexander and extremely violent and volatile language was said about African-American Kemi Fakunle, including that Jack wanted to "stomp a mudhole in her chest." Bangladeshi-American Ovi Kabir was body-shamed and described as a "brown flame."
Thus far, the only non-white person spared racist and hateful comments from the Jacks, as the duo have been dubbed, was Isabella Wang, a Chinese-American who had joined an early alliance with them. All of that changed in recent weeks, though, as the Gr8ful alliance crumbled and Isabella found herself on the outs, alongside her showmance Nick Maccarone.
And just like that, cue Jack Matthews with a pointlessly racist comment regarding Isabella while talking to members of his smaller Six Shooter alliance (excluding the aforementioned couple). Talking about how Isabella has damaged her own game through her behavior in the house — which is true enough — Tommy used the common expression, "The proof is in the pudding."
Jack quickly interjected to amend the statement to "the rice pudding." Do you get it? Because Isabella is Chinese-American? Yeah, there’s only one way to see that addition and that’s as a race descriptor.
Tommy quickly joked that it was "slop pudding," leading some live feed viewers to think that maybe he was trying to cover for Jack’s comment, but it’s also possible he either didn’t catch it or didn’t process the racist connotations of associating rice with a person of Chinese descent.
Jack has already been talked to by production for his aggressive and racist comments, though he insists he was misunderstood, and it appears he was possibly talked to again this time.
Later, in another conversation captured on the live feeds, Christie Murphy — who was also there — and Tommy were again discussing the pudding conversation saying that they hadn’t at all gotten the racist content when Jack initially made the comment.
As their conversation got more specifically into the issue of racism, CBS switched the camera feed to Nick and Bella, leading many watchers to accuse the network of again working to cover this up as much as possible.
Julie Chen will be hosting Thursday night’s episode of the show, so fans will be watching closely to see if she or the broadcast are finally ready to address the ongoing racism on the show, or if the cover-up will continue.
Power of Chaos
Even though Cliff was Head of Household and orchestrated his mission to try and take down the two alpha males of the house, and aforementioned "problem" HouseGuests, there were too many powers in play to make anything a sure bet. For one, everyone knows that Christie has the Panic Power, which could allow her to change up everything at the Veto meeting.
If she activates it, the POV winner gets to pick the replacement nominee. And then there’s Jack’s Chaos Power, which gave him the power to force a redraw for that Veto if he didn’t like the lineup. In other words, there were a lot of factors in play that could disrupt Cliff’s plans and ultimately keep both Jacks in the house for another week, which would make him Public Enemy Number One!
In the end, Michie pulled out a quick-strip victory in the POV and did his usual thing in trying to pressure (she doesn’t like the word bully, but that’s been a problem in the house, too) Christie into using her power on him. In fact, he didn’t even seem to understand what her problem was in hesitating about it as if he was entitled to a power he didn’t win.
It was all very odd and uncomfortable to watch. Was he trying to strongarm his way through this next move, or was he truly clueless? In the end, it didn’t really matter, though, as the Six Shooters got what they wanted and Christie strengthened her position in the house. It remains to be seen how this might impact Cliff moving forward, as a lot depends on Thursday’s vote.
After striking a side deal with Cliff, Christie did not use her Panic Power and still managed to get Isabella on the block opposite Jack. Cliff would love to see Jack go because that six-person alliance rightfully scares him, but it’s going to be a challenge to secure the votes to keep Bella when she’s made so many waves in the house and so many enemies.
Still, Cliff plays a logical game and the numbers dictate breaking up the Jacks is good for everyone’s game who is not a Jack. But will they see it that way? Or will Isabella become the fourth person of color in a row evicted from "Big Brother"? We can’t say it would be a totally racist decision, but it certainly wouldn’t look good on a totally racist season.
HouseGuest Report Cards
Cliff is playing one of the smartest games in the house, and yet "the unexpected" may just derail him completely. His plan to take down the Jacks was just what needed to happen for his band of "Outcasts," but it may yet all fall apart around him. Nevertheless, he made some strategic alliances and has earned some respect, which could give him good will long enough to regroup and still make a solid run. Grade: A
Christie masterfully used the knowledge of her power to not have to use it and still get her will put into play. She also made a side deal with Cliff, who is effectively leading the other side of the house right now, which all but assures her and Tommy’s safety for a while no matter who’s in power. Grade: A-
Tommy is really benefiting from working closely with Christie, as she has his back and is playing a very good game right now. His own social game remains top-notch, and this pair is showing a little bit of flexibility right now, which could prove crucial as the tides of power are shifting between two large groups right now. Grade: B+
Michie is like teflon: nothing seems to stick to the guy and he is just charming and pushing his way through this game. He won a crucal POV this week, proving he can step up when it matters, and has a lot of influence on what others do in the house. He didn’t get Christie to use her power, but got an even better result for his game by her not using it. Grade: B+
Nicole is benefiting from laying low and maintaining her secret alliance with Cliff. They are effectively a secret duo right now, which if they stay true to could prove incredibly powerful in the long run … especially as Cliff makes inroads into the "Six." Grade: B
Holly and Analyse continue to float through the game. It can take them far, but it’s really hard to get a jury to award you $500,000 for floating. That said, waiting until midway to start playing has worked for some, so while the big targets take their shots, its’ hard to argue this isn’t effective. Grade: B
Kathryn is a wild card. She’s unpredictable and wacky, and yet she has won a competition now and nearly won this POV this week. She’s a wild card worth paying attention to. If the "Outcasts" can get it together and shift any power their way, she could prove instrumental in their solidifying it. Grade: B-
Jack is clearly the bigger target for the "Outcasts" right now. He looks safe this week, but there’s no guarantee that Cliff won’t be able to pull off something amazing and get the votes he needs to at least force a tie and make the huge move himself. If he doesn’t, Jack has proven as teflon as Michie, but he will always remain a huge target for the other side any time they can take their shot. Grade: C
Jessica is doing a pretty good job of disappearing into the house and it’s probably the best thing for her. As a person of color, she could become an easy target again for no reason other than that (even if the HGs don’t quite see what they’re doing, the rest of us do). She’s no real threat, so she just needs to stay quiet and align strongly with the "Outcasts" and hope for the best. Grade: C
Sam is slowly becoming a threat in the house for some reason. The Veto wins were impressive, but it’s more than that and suddenly everyone is very worried about his social game and his gameplay. That’s not a great thing for Sam and especially because he won’t commit to any single alliance. As it stands, he could become an easy target for either side. Grade: C-
Nick is in a tough spot because of his association with Isabella. He’s effectively ostracized from the defunct Gr8ful. The only thing he can hope now is that Isabella is the bigger target (she is) and once she’s gone, they might leave him alone or try to flip him back their way for numbers. Either way, though, he’s not really in control of his own fate at this point. Grade: D+
Isabella is more than likely the HouseGuest going home, unless Cliff can pull off a miracle. Her bullying behavior throughout the season has also made her a problematic HouseGuest — and at least some of that did get on the air — but she’s still a potential number for the "Outcasts" if they want any chance of taking on the physical powerhouses in the Six Shooters. Nevertheless, her shot at the game seems totally gone no matter what happens this week. Grade: D-
"Cliff decided to draw a line in the sand. Cliff, if you want to play ‘Big Brother,’ let’s play ‘Big Brother.’" -Michie
"So far Cliff as HOH, he sucks." -Jack
"That felt like the first real nomination ceremony because it wasn’t us in power." -Christie
"If it backfires on me, it backfires on me." -Cliff (to Nick and Isabella)
"We got you. We got you next week. It’s game time, bro." -Nick
"You are a ‘BB’ legend." -Isabella (to Cliff … well, we’ll see)
"I really want to get out an alpha male this week, but my biggest hurdle is if Christie uses her power. So I better figure out a way to make sure that she doesn’t hijack my HOH this week." -Cliff
"Can I just ask? Do either one of y’all have the f–king power?" -Michie (to Jack, Tommy, Analyse and Christie)
[Jack confesses after a drawn out smile]
"I’m feeling pretty good about this lineup. I’ve got both Sam and Jess–" -Cliff
"Hold up. I choose to activate the Chaos Power, which allows me to force the HOH and the two nominees to put their chips back in the box and force a redraw." -Jack (forcing POV redraw)
"Yeah, buddy!" -Michie
"Jack picks my chip. He looked at me like he was dying inside. It looked like his soul disappeared out of his chest." -Sam (during redraw)
"If one of them wins the Veto and Christie uses her power, I don’t really hold out any hope that we’ve got the votes to do anything." -Cliff (to Nick and Isabella)
"This isn’t easy. Look at me, I’ve got a dad bod. I’m so twisted around, I"m feeling like a soft pretzel on a warm day at the state fair. I don’t bend that way." -Cliff (during POV comp)
"As a former dancer, I’m used to doing quick costume changes, but I’m also super flexible. Hey Brett [Robinson]! Don’t put that on." -Kathryn
"I feel like a contortionist that strips on the side to try to pay the bills." -Kathryn
"Do I get bonus points for taking off my bathing suit?" -Jack
"Whoa, idiot!" -Jack (after forgetting to repress the buttons for way too long)
I want to prove to everyone, including Rachel Reilly, that I don’t need a lifevest and I’m not floating through this game." -Analyse (during POV comp)
"If I use it, I’m really pissing off Cliff. And if I don’t use it, I’m really pissing off whoever doesn’t go home. This week just honestly sucks." -Christie (contemplating using Panic Power)
"Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a pretty strong woman and I don’t need a man telling me what to do. It’s up to me if I choose to use the power or not. But it’s becoming clearer that he is selfish and he is trying to dictate every move in our alliance and he needs to watch his step." -Christie (about Michie)
"I don’t like the word bully but Michie’s a very strong– he’s very convicting [sic]. He’s putting a lot of pressure on me. He thinks it’s his." -Christie (to Cliff)
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