Big Brother recap: Victoria and the Bombonators

Nicole struggles to stay alive, while Derrick struggles to maintain his status as House Puppetmaster.
Ep. 31 | Aired Sep 3, 2014

NOT THE RED WIRE! Nicole, alas.


So the plan was simple: Kill Frankie. And then Nicole—poor Nicole, sweet Nicole, trusting Nicole—decided to tell Derrick just how much she respected him. "Everything you do has a reason," she said. "You're the closest thing to Dan that I ever came across."

You could hear Derrick's heart skip a beat.

This was the first time all summer that anyone inside the Big Brother house finally met Derrick on his level, and you could feel something new coming off the Undercover man. It felt a little bit like terror. "I'm panicking, man, I'm panicking," he confessed. "I can't have her turning the house against me, comparing me to Dan." There was no real need to eliminate Nicole. She's been losing competitions; she's lost her fire. But she sees Derrick for who he really is.

So Derrick ran back upstairs and proffered up a new plan. How did Caleb know Nicole wouldn't come gunning for him? What if Nicole assembled a final-act alliance with Victoria and Christine? (ASIDE: There is an argument to be made that the whole reason The Bomb Squad stuck together for so long was the constant threat of an All-Female alliance. That's what Joey was rambling about way back in week one; Amber was making rumblings of a Lady Squad, and so she had to be kicked out; now Nicole is in the sniper scope. The irony is that the All-Female alliance is entirely a propaganda invention—one of my biggest disappointments about this season is that, after a lot of talk on the first night, none of the women in the house ever got serious about kick-starting a gender war. END OF ASIDE.) It's clear that Derrick acted a bit impetuously; for once, Caleb honestly didn't seem to know what he would do.


Style Watch, part One: Ranking Nicole's Looks, Episode 31 Edition:

3. Headband Hoodie Hipster

Screen Shot 2014-09-03 at 5.34.33 PM

2. Beehive Ghostbuster

Screen Shot 2014-09-03 at 5.34.33 PM 1

1. Existential Sweet Tart Screen Shot 2014-09-03 at 5.46.20 PM 2


Style Watch, Part Two:

Screen Shot 2014-09-03 at 5.38.09 PM


Before we conclude, some thoughts from Caesar:

First of all, "They're all dead in the game to him" is one of the freakiest and most accurate things anyone has ever written about Big Brother strategy. It's a reference to the greatest speech in Big Brother history, and it speaks to just how cool Derrick has played his game. (Can you lie to everyone all the time? You can, if you stop thinking about it as lying.) But the second point is just as true. Nobody wins Big Brother clean. Sometime soon, something will ruffle Derrick's perfect plotting—and in that moment, he'll be tested. On a larger level, I'm not sure Derrick has had his moment yet: The big move that he can point to and say, "That is why I deserve to win Big Brother." Will the moment come in the double eviction? Can he actually win a competition? I say yes—but time is running short.


Caleb put Victoria up next to Nicole and bluntly stated that Nicole would be going home. It was a weird twist backwards: After a long week of instigating toward a Christine or Frankie backstab, Derrick happily watched as the original target remained the final target.

But tomorrow, Big Brother 16 will change once and for all. If Nicole goes home, the only obvious target left is Victoria—and she's not such an obvious target, not anymore. Christine is furious. Caleb is suspicious. Cody is impatient, a dog of war waiting to get let off the leash. Frankie is in the part of the Frankie Grande biopic when the lead character starts ripping sinks out of walls. And Derrick wants at least two of those people out of the house. Alfred Hitchcock always said that it was exciting to watch a bomb go off, but the real thrill came from knowing a bomb is going to go off and watching people walk around the ticking bomb, blissfully unaware of the explosion awaiting them.

All season long, the Bombonators have been tick-tick-ticking.



Got any geeky thoughts or questions? Email them to me at or tweet me @DarrenFranich, and I’ll respond in a future edition of my Entertainment Geekly column.

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