Big Brother Recap: Downhill Scheming

Here’s where I’m at: If you’re a Brenchel fan, vanish. All right, honey? Go away. Just disappear. Thank you for understanding.

Yesterday’s episode of Big Brother featured so much of Rachel’s self-victimization, Brendon’s pathetic comfort, and Brenchel’s cruel commentary that I can’t justify liking a thing about them. I don’t care if Rachel is “a competitor.” So was unhinged Johnny Bananas from MTV’s The Challenge. So was American Idol‘s Danny Gokey. So is Fox News. I can’t support Brenchel’s brand of anxious self-righteousness, and I hope we’re in agreement there. It’s the other houseguests who are playing the more interesting game anyway, and I think we can expect gutsier, more impressive strategy from those snipers. For some reason, I expect to be impressed by Porsche. Don’t ask.

We begin last night’s episode in the throes of the HOH challenge, with nine houseguests standing upon a rocking ski contraption. Rachel looks on from the sidelines, clapping at Brendon like a less-coordinated Vanna White. As the competing nonet sway on the mid-air ski mechanism, it’s clear that lower-body strength is a major help and, in fact, upper body strength is a major hindrance. All the dudes are hurtin’. Jeff is buckling, Lawon is gyrating and writhing like a pained Sly Stone, and Brendon is predictably whiny. The first person to fall is embarrassed Adam, who wins the privilege of opening one of five loser “snowballs” located on a table near Rachel. One snowball contains $10,000, but the others bear dubious rewards. Adam opens one and reads a note that says he must wear an elf costume for a week. Aww, that’s not so bad. That’s like a kindergartener’s “Truth or Dare” dare. You wear that demoralizing troll costume, Adam! You can draw a Van Halen logo on it, if you like.

Lawon falls next, followed by Brendon. Both open snowballs containing “Have-Not” notes, meaning they’ll be eating slop and sardines for the next week. I love watching Brendon suffer. He’s like a beady-eyed, evil Nigel Barker, and I smize like a bloodthirsty Tyra at his demise. Be more editorial next time, Brendon!

Jeff’s the next to tumble off the ski-majig, and he opens up the $10,000 snowball. Yay! He can donate it to one of his many causes, like homophobia or loudness. When Jordan is the fifth competitor to fall off, she opens the last snowball and sees that she, too, will be a Have-Not this week. I’m fine with that. Jordan gets feistier with agitation, and slop will accelerate her feistiness process.

That means we’re left with Shelly, Kalia, Daniele, and Porsche. If Shelly or Porsche wins, the veterans’ alliance remains in power. If Daniele or Kalia, who were disgraced last week during a house meeting, win, they have a chance to strike back. And, oh, look: Porsche’s feeling weak.

“The pain’s not in my armpits, like it is for the others,” she claims in confessional. “It’s in my shoulder. Right here.” She points to her tricep. Teehee! That’s like a shoulder, if you’re new to the English language.

As Shelly, Daniele, and Kalia linger on their skis, Brendon tells us why he thinks Kalia is performing so well.

“I think this particular competition was suited for Kalia. It involved minimal movement and she kind of used her — I don’t know what they call it — muffin top to rest on that bar. So that might’ve helped.”

Nothing like cruel, misogynist comments from the sorest loser since Salieri. To Brendon’s chagrin, Shelly is the next to descend from the skis, leaving a beaming Daniele and a fast-crumbling Kalia to win the gold and silver. Shelly is angry with herself, and she tells her colleagues, “Two classless people up there.” Bad news, Shelly: If you’re on Big Brother, you’re inherently classless. It doesn’t matter who cuddle with in the Have-Not asylum.

Lo and behold, Daniele ends up winning. Honestly? Thank God. Say what you will about Daniele’s aloofness and general callousness, but she’s not a moron. She could stand to be funnier, yes, but she’s an expert on game dynamics and a true Big Brother craftsman. Besides, Cassi was eliminated, and Daniele’s the only available replacement for her backwoods brass. I’m a fan.

With glee, Daniele unveils her new HOH pad to the roommates, and they’re all less than gleeful about her digs. “It’s like having your ex-girlfriend calling you over to look at her apartment,” Jeff claims. Very funny. He’s that rare comedian who is the joke.

After the Daniele party concludes, we join Lawon, Jordan, and Shelly on the patio. Lawon opens up about being gay, and Jordan responds with the kind of intelligence we expect from Big Brother veterans.

“So, what is it you like more about men than women?” she asks. Yep, that’s how gayness works. You weigh the pros and cons of both sexes, decide which one is the heavier side of the Venn diagram, and proceed with humping that half. To Lawon’s credit, he doesn’t hurl Shelly — who is the color of an aged Spalding basketball — at Jordan. Instead, he relays how his grandmother said to him, “I want you to be the best black gay man you can be.” OK. Slight tears in my plasticine robot eyes. I’m starting to dig this Lawon, even if he dresses like a direct-to-VHS star of an Undercover Brother sequel.

HOH Daniele lets the panicked veterans try and appeal to her. First, she assures Jeff and Jordan that she won’t attempt to eliminate them that week (a promise that Jeff nonsensically believes is a trick), and then she sits back as Rachel and Brendon instruct her not to nominate them. It’s an uneventful plea that concludes with chilly hugs, but when Daniele tells us, “I’m not afraid to get blood on my hands,” their fate is clear. After a quick nomination ceremony, Daniele reveals that she’s nominated the odious Brenchel for elimination. Oh, joy. I’ve decided not to check up on the P.O.V. competition results, but I’m planning on sleeping better knowing that Rachel or Brendon may be invited to an intense interview with Julie Chen this Thursday. Pardon me as I enact the Cha-Cha Slide in front of an open window. I’m even adding some hip-popping Lawon flair!

What did you think of the episode? Are you psyched for Brenchel retaliation? Mad? Do you hate Daniele and Kalia? And what about Porsche — is she a sock puppet in a tank top? Hit me in the comments, read me regularly at, and follow me on Twitter at @louisvirtel.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Again says:

    Once again, Brendon said the thing about the ex-girlfriend’s apartment, not Jeff.

  2. Julie says:

    On that note, I think Lawon’s grandma was the one to give him the pep talk. And after thinking Kalia was a non-entity, I’m starting to like her — especially given her recent penchant for giving Brendon the what for.

    • filmex says:

      You must not be watching BB on Showtime.

      While it’s easy to loathe Brenchel, because they are such a hilariously bi-polar team, gloating, high-fiving in-your-face a-holes when they’re on top, and sniveling, depressed suicidal whiners when they are on the block, at least they are entertaining, in a train wreck sort of way.

      Especially when you think they came back on the show to reform Rachel’s image, when all they have done is reinforce all the worst aspects of her personality.

      If you are watching anything along with the CBS show, however, most are agreement that Kalia is akin to nails on a blackboard. Not only will she never shut up, and I mean never, she is like Ms. Pacman–she NEVER stops stuffing her face.

      If the constant drone of her voice wasn’t enough to send one to the web to Google “suicide”, yesterday she uttered the line that should be on her tombstone–“I was going to exercise but I decided to eat ice cream instead”.

      If she wants to weigh 300 pounds when she leaves the BB house, that’s up to her. The fact that she never stops chewing (even when she’s talking) so that every conversation is accompanied by the mic picking up the overwhelming sound of crunching chips and the like, has me on the Kalia diet.

      I am so repulsed by watching, and HEARING, her eat that I can no longer think of food.

      That fact that she is endlessly talking about winning the next HOH, when she’s never won anything, hardly matters when put against the other attributes of the human garbage disposal. Yuck.

      • lance says:

        I hate when peeps who are watching other stuff assume they are in the know and people who don’t have the same opinion “must not be watching BB on Showtime”.

        This just in: people watch the exact same thing and form different opinions.

      • lance again says:

        Oh but you’re spot on about R&B’s bi-polar unlikeability. Except the entertaining part.

  3. dan says:

    Hysterical summary! Better than last night’s episode. One correction, it was Lawon’s grandmother who told him to embrace his gayness and be the best, black gay man around. I was actually impressed with Jordan’s sincerity when speaking with Lawon. I kept thinking Shelley was going to come out of the closet during the conversation. I can’t stand Brendon! Rachel is horrendous, but at least she is somewhat funny. Brendon, however, is an enabler (to Rachel’s mood swings) and he is clueless about interpersonal communication between people (no, it isn’t game play, it is a horrible personality trait that doesn’t allow him to listen or consider anybody else’s opinion…his ego is bigger than Lawon’s afro wig, but the wig is smarter). Can’t wait for either Rachel or Brendon to leave on Thursday. Then the game will really begin. One other thing: Daniele is much hotter with dark hair!

  4. Sivat says:

    I love, love, love Daniele! Unfortunately for her she is doing everyone else’s dirty work, but if she gets to the end, that kind of thing is respected and rewarded.

  5. Ashley says:

    Ya saying the whole die thing made me uncomfortable reading. Ya I don’t like them at all but saying to die and sit in a closet full of knives and slowly back into them isn’t cool… And also the quote about having to see Dani’s HOH room being like an ex gf asking u to come over wasn’t said by Jeff, Brenden said it. Jeff said it was like deathrow. And it was lawon’s grandmother who told him to be the best gay man he can be. As for the ep it self, I’m not a fan of Dani really but if she keeps her world to Jeff/Jordan all will be ok with me. As for Porche she’s not very bright! Hello its called an elbow not shoulder. As for Kalia, I’m not a fan of hers one bit. Sometimes I forget she’s even there, until she had that argument with Brenden & everyone. Hopefully Brenden and Rachel are split up this week cause if not its gonna suck!

  6. Sean says:

    I’ve never seen any of the BBs with the vets, but I’ve hated Rachel since the first time she screamed, “Who wants to see my HOH room!” Although even if of one of them do get voted off (probably Brendan, except if people see it as a great opportunity to never hear her voice again) it’s going to fuel the other one and Kalia and Danielle will just get picked off by the vets sooner or later. Then the only way the vets don’t get voted off is if Shelly or Porche (or Lawon!) win HOH. It really does remind me of Boston Rob in Survivor this year. Exp plus minions=win. So let’s go Jordan1

  7. Mannie says:

    I am SO glad Dani won. These people may think she can’t do anything because she wasn’t allowed to play for all that time, but she kicked butt at the games when it was her season too. It’ll be a fierce POV competition.

    Watching the HOH competition, I was wondering why more people weren’t leaning on the handles like Dani and Kalia were. That helps you save your strenght for when the wall tilts. And for Brendon to say Kalia was still on for resting her muffin top on the handle, what was his excuse for Dani? It was just a smart way to save their strenght. That poor baby wasn’t smart enough to do it too.

    I laughed SO hard when Porsche said her shoulder hurt and pointed at her elbow! Too funny!!! There is no way she can really be that stupid, is there? Do you think part of it is for camera time? And when Shelly said the people left up were classless people, I wondered if she was looking in a mirror. She’s just as bad as anyone else in the house, maybe even worse. I liked her the first episode, but that didn’t last.

    Why are they still calling Kalia a floater? She did great on that HOH and for them not to give Dani and Kalia any credit made me mad. “You’re doing awesome Adam… And Brendon… And Jeff… And Jordan… And Shelly… And Porsche!” It felt like watching a bunch of junior high girls. I don’t understand why Kalia tried to talk to Rachel after the HOH. You know how Rachel is all the time after these competitions, don’t fan her fire.

  8. Laurel says:

    Unfortunately it will probably be Brendan who goes home this week instead of Rachel.Not hearing her whine would be a blessing.
    And Danielle & Kalia will be on the block next week.
    Danielle is pretty good at POV’s though.
    So perhaps Kalia will GO.Thankfully.
    Kalia is almost as annoying as Rachel.

  9. Netta says:

    Can someone explain the concept of this show to me? (What its about)

  10. Chris says:

    How did Brendon screw up his knees so bad? I don’t remember any competition in which he did it and it just seems strange. Every time I see him it bothers me.

    • Tvaddic says:

      His knees got bruised from the Ant Have/Have Not competition.

      • Laurel says:

        It was the Picnic Comp when they had to put 2 team members in an ant suit and crawl,roll and run through a picnic.
        Brendan & Rachel won and Kalia hurt her shoulder.

  11. Sean says:

    Rachel’s predictable meltdown began even before the HoH competition ended. I loved that she had to hand over the key to Daniele. It’s kind of like in a baseball game, when a player makes an amazing catch to end the inning, and then he leads off at bat right away in the next inning…it was karmic justice that Daniele won HoH right after Dominic got evicted. At least Rachel didn’t chuck the key in the yard in a tantrum like she did last season.

    When you’re done here at TV Line, I hope you’ll check out my full recap at or you can just click my name

  12. Tvaddic says:

    I like Brenchel they are good at the competitions, and the Newbies are completely scared to take them out. There is about an 100% chance Danielle will go up. Unless Kalia can get an HOH win, ( which is why she should of let Kalia win this weeks HOH). And on the issue of Brenchel, it is not their fault the producers give them so much airtime.

  13. OSCAR says:

    ANSWER TO NETTA: To be the last one standing and win 500G’s


  14. Eva says:

    It’s funny, but I think Brendan is much worse than Rachel. She at least has feelings and is amusing in her delusionality – he’s just mean. As for Dani winning, she should have let Kalia win so she wouldn’t be left high and dry next week since this is the only competition in which Kalia hasn’t completely sucked. Since they seem to be a duo, Dani shouldn’t have let her desire to get rid of Brenchel effect her game.

    Honestly, they were all so stupid last week – Dom running off his mouth to Shelley, Dani not explaining herself properly to Brenchel, and their paranoia. In the end, in BB – if you want to win – you have to turn against your alliance so why does everyone have hurt feelings? Stupid. Even worse – why do I still watch?!?

    • Evan says:

      Brendon’s definitely worse then Rachel. He said last season when he first came on the show how his family disowned him when they found out he was going on there. And I believe they did talk to one of his ex’s on camera who basically implied Brendon is very passive aggressive and is extremely manipulative and can be cruel.

      Which when you watch BBAD and the feeds you can see at times how bad he really treats Rachel (CBS is doing a decent job toning down how bad he can be even though they do show it). Still waiting for the Skype scandal to be brought up via the show. (I know they’ve all talked about it privately.)

      As for Dani, I’d appreciate the game she’s playing more if it wasn’t so predicated on her trying to prove so hard she can play the game without her father which you know she feels she’s being compared to every second. The bit where Julie went after her because she didn’t say “I love you” to him right when Grodner wanted was proof of that. Its why her first idea got found out and blew up in her face. Played too hard, too fast, because she’s still trying to get past Evel’s shadow which she doesn’t need to do. Everyone already knows how good a player she is, she really did get to 2nd place the first time through her own means, not riding her father’s coattails.

  15. Tina says:

    Love the recaps….I really want Rachel to go home but Brenden will probably go either way one less baby to lsten whine when they don’t win. Danni and Kalia are the only two who are really playing this game althought Ilove Jeff and Jordan.

  16. JD says:

    it is unfortunate that (SPOILER) Brendon won the veto. i think their current plan is to take Rachel off because (seriously) they think Dani will just put Jordan up and they think people would vote Jordan out before Brendan. What? i mean i know that those two constantly live in a Fantasy Land where they are the most beautiful, intelligent, moral, and well liked people on the earth, but they have to be kidding me. they’d have a better chance against almost anyone else. they only thing you can say when you’re campaigning against Jordan is “she already won once.” she’s extremely well-liked and she can’t win a comp unless Jeff throws it to her, so she’s basically a non-entity. if i was anyone in there, i’d want to bring her to the final because “she already won once” will be a good arguement against her getting the votes a second time. if this re-nom scenerio happens, and anyone other than Rachel (and possibly Porsche) votes for Brendon to stay, i’ll be shocked. Looks good for J&J though…because Jeff would have a good reason to vote against Brendan and Jordan won’t have to vote…Rachel will probably still work with them, and she will definitely be too stupid to realize that they had cut a deal with Danielle. those two are about to be sitting pretty.

    also, if they bring someone back into the house next week (as it’s being rumored), i hope Cassi can get the votes…for Rachel to see that America voted her arch-enemy back in the house instead of her fiancee will be hilarious.

    • Tvaddic says:

      Not saying it can happen, but if they were truly smart they would get the replacement out, no one could win against that person in final 2.

  17. Patrick says:

    I love how Brenchel keep describing Kalia as the ultimate super-floater when she comes in #2 in the HOH comp. She hung in there longer than pretty much everyone else – so how exactly is that floating?

    • Evan says:

      First – Brenchel calls everyone a floater who isn’t them.

      Second, Kalia currently is a floater. Yes, she did well in this last competition, but if your overall goal every week is “Well whatever the majority wants to do, I’ll do, I just want to skate on by” you ARE a floater.

      She’s done nothing yet that could justify her being declared the winner of the game if she was in final two and jury questioning happened today in terms of gameplay. This could definitely change as the game continues, but if you haven’t actually done anything yet to further yourself in this game other then follow the leader, you’re a floater.

      Right now, the vets are the only ones actually still doing anything. Any newbie that attempted something has been found out and sent home.

  18. Tvaddic says:

    I get that people like Cassi and Dominic on a personal level, but this game is not for them.Dom threw the POV, and Cassi’s honesty was her down fall. Could someone explain?

  19. stillisill says:

    Dani is great. Love her. She’s not making the game personal, which is cool. She even told Kalia on After Dark last night that she’d vote for Brendan to win the whole thing if he kept up his level of intensity throughout the game. And every time Kalia starts whining about someone, she reminds her that it’s a game and to not let it get personal. Rachel is that girl at the party that get’s too drunk and pouts on the couch all night while her boyfriend tries to comfort her. She and Brendan are incredibly unlikable and vindictive. But Dani should take their deal and put up Shelley against Rachel instead of Luan, thereby keeping one of the people in her corner and getting rid of one of “theirs” just in case.

  20. BBfan66 says:

    “Talk smart about TV!”

    When is Louis Virtel going to start talking smart about TV?

  21. topsyturvy says:

    I prefer the much more appropriate RADON to BRENCHEL.

  22. Jenna Maroney says:

    Is the muffin top comment really “cruel”??

  23. Jason says:

    If you really want to get drunk play the drinking game that you drink whenever Rachel does something annoying. I hate fake people who laugh at everything they say or everything that happens in a fake irritating laugh. And I rewoundRachel falling down like five times. Pure gold!!

  24. Lewis says:

    I completely disagree with everything Louis says (except for Jeff being a homophobic moron) but at least Louis is cute isn’t that all that really matters? I love Rachel but hate Brendon. Although I do get endless amusement every time he tells Rachel in his pansy baby voice “I love you, I love you very much.”

  25. Gordon says:

    I agree to this article! Especially placing Danny Gokey from American Idol in the same brand of anxious self righteousness! LOLOL