Big Brother, Week 10: A Big Meech-stake?

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With the exit of Paulie from the Big Brother household, there’s now a new power vacuum in the house. And for a little bit, it looked as though Paul and Victor, who’ve adopted the name the Sitting Ducks, appeared to have the upper hand. Paul has played a great social game and slyly maneuvered toward the power in the house. His bro Victor has been a competition beast and with Paulie gone, he now sits as the most obvious physical threat left. But there’s one problem with this — he’s not able to compete for Head of Household this week.

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So lo and behold Natalie ends up the Head of Household and while she and James collaborated with Victor and Paul to break up the Corey / Nicole / Paulie threesome last week, she decides she’s not totally comfortable with this alliance. In fact, she and James begin brainstorming with the realization that Victor and Paul are playing the strongest games heading down the stretch and need to be split before it’s too late.

But there’s a wrench thrown in these plans as America’s Care Package this week gives one of the house guests a co-HoH spot, meaning they’ll be responsible for naming one of the nominees. This could have really thrown a wrench in Natalie’s plans, but she ended up with possibly the best scenario as Michelle received the special reward. At their initial discussion, Michelle shares that she wants Nicole out, which is no surprise as she called her out as a snake a few episodes prior and was fully on board to pick off Paulie, Corey and Nicole one by one. But Natalie goes to work swaying her with the idea that Victor and Paul are in the best position to win it all and need to be addressed now.

Michelle has a soft spot for Victor and doesn’t want to be the one to put him up, but she eventually goes along with the plan that they put the sitting ducks pair on the block. As the week goes on, Michelle begins to regret this move, because she really likes Victor and has been playing the game emotionally, preferring to make her game moves based on who she does and doesn’t like. No matter how you slice it, Michelle is not in a good place. She would likely be on the outside looking in on any alliance remaining.

When the veto competition happens, things get a little worse. Paul was the chosen target this week, because of his mix of social and physical game. But Paul wins the Veto, leaving the more likable choice for both Natalie and Michelle on the block. This was never the plan and Natalie starts feeling as bad as Michelle, but James holds the swing vote this week. Only Nicole or Corey are options to go up, and after some waffling back and forth, Corey ends up on the block against Victor. James is ready to do a final four deal with Corey and Nicole and he’s dead set on Victor going, while Natalie tells Michelle he’ll change his mind after she speaks with him. But it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen as James has his target, and even a Paul / Victor scam hoping to swing the vote doesn’t appear to happen. So, by a vote of 2-1, Victor goes home.

But little do the houseguests know that one of those currently on the jury will soon have a chance to re-enter and wreak some havoc down the stretch. Who will be the returning houseguest?¬†All of the jury members joined the remaining competitors in an endurance competition and the one lasting the longest will return to the game, but that’s not revealed before the end of Thursday’s episode.

Rankings

1. Nicole – If she or Corey win this week, then all is peachy. If James or Natalie win this week, it would appear that she’s also safe due to a supposed Final Four deal. And Paul would be wise to approach Nicole and Corey. That just leaves Michelle and since she was the co-HoH this past week, she won’t have power this week. The only wild card here would be a returning house guest having Nicole in her sights.

2. Corey – He’s still got Nicole, and after James burned Paul, it’s possible that Corey and Nicole could reel him in. Plus, there’s the supposed final four deal with James and Natalie. So after two straight weeks of going on the block, Corey actually could be in the best position this week depending on which side he wants to align with.

3. Paul – The houseguests were right to fear Paul, and he pulled himself off the block. But sadly, his partner in crime — Victor — is gone, so what will Paul do down the stretch? Will he pull in Michelle? Will he go to Corey with a deal after James turned on both he and Paulie in successive weeks? Can he manage to make one more key alliance that will get him to the end or does he have to win out? He’s a resourceful one, and we’ll see who he chooses to align with down the stretch.

4. Michelle – She remains primarily because of the bridges she’s burned and how she’s viewed as a liability. She’s allowed emotion to rule her decision making and hasn’t really shown any shot at winning competitions. But she remains in the hunt because there’s no one on the jury who would think she’s playing a good game and would be a great person to bring along to the end. It’s highly likely that Michelle might be on the block at some point this week, but is she ever really the target?

5. Natalie – She’s made some strategic moves over the past few weeks that have worked in her favor. But after being behind the split of Victor and Paul, we know Paul will be gunning for her. And if his powers of influence work on other house guests, she could find herself up on the block against James. While some may have questioned their showmance, there’s nothing left to chance among the remaining competitors.

6. James – If Corey sticks with the final four deal, he’s in as good as spot as anyone. If Paul sways Corey to point out James’ duplicity over the last two weeks, he could be on his way home. Plus, depending on who comes back into the game, James really could be in a precarious position.

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