McCrae and Amanda always knew they had a long shot. No showmance has ever made it to the final two. But this game had been very good to them. They spent close to a month ruling the house from the shadows, their power undisputed. Each week, someone else would try to sound the alarm about the McCramda dominion; each week, that person would be disappeared almost immediately, like the conspiracy nut who gets silenced by the government in a ’70s paranoid thriller. Last week, Amanda managed to actually win a competition — just one competition in a summer, but if you’re someone with a god complex, that’s the kind of win that can confirm your status as the Most Important Person in the World.
Now that was all over. And Amanda had no idea, didn’t even have an inkling. “Someone’s at fault for this,” she told McCrae. Her boytoy concubine was glum and depressive, but she went on a witch hunt. She walked right up to GinaMarie’s HoH throneroom and demanded an explanation. She told GinaMarie that Elissa sent home Nick and Aaryn, and she told GinaMarie that the whole house would be against her, and she told GinaMarie: “You f—ed yourself. You f—ed yourself. It was a f—ing stupid game move.” And all along GinaMarie sat serenely astride her thronebed. She nodded thoughtfully. Her body language was perfectly poised, beauty-queen perfect; she seemed to be saying, “Why thank you for your constructive criticism, fellow citizen. I will take all of this under advisement.”
Meanwhile, Amanda spiraled quickly. She yelled that she didn’t want to be in the house anymore. She cried in the Have-Not room. She told McCrae that they would never have it so good ever again: Long, leisurely days with nothing to do except lounge on the bed. From Amanda’s perspective, this had been the perfect summer, a crazy combination of a summer-camp reverie and a lucid dream where the whole world follows your whims. You want a new boyfriend? You want absolute power? There have been better players in the Big Brother game, but I can’t think off the top of my head off a player who has had a more perfect time in the house. Heck, from Amanda’s perspective, she was probably living inside of a romantic comedy. “A 24-year-old pizzaboy from Minnesota, and I love him,” she said, sounding like the lead character in a romcom giving the final speech right before she leaves her stiff Greg Kinnear fiancé at the altar and runs to the pizza parlor just in time to see her true love perform a rousing rendition of “Don’t Stop Believing” with his Journey cover band.
Of course, a more accurate perspective on this season of Big Brother is that Amanda is a ridiculously powerful and semi-delusional supervillain who doesn’t seem to realize that she has angered almost everyone in the house. The worst part is that, in this week of decline, Amanda had brief moments of clarity. “America’s gonna love that I f—ing tortured Elissa last week,” she said, bitterly. Amanda is smarter than most of the other people in the game right now; she knows the optics on her are not very good right now. “I hope that they see what a bitch she was,” she said. Whatever perceived slights Elissa committed against Amanda can’t help but pale in comparison to Amanda’s relentless all-out-assault.
Also not helping matters: Elissa is by far the least threatening person in the house right now for Amanda’s game, so her obsession with Rachel’s sister is outright comical. Elissa is a non-entity this week: Her one bit of gamesmanship came with a whispered conversation with Judd, when she said she was very suspicious of Andy. Judd immediately relayed this information to Andy. “Elissa thinks you’re playing both sides of the house,” said Judd. Andy — who is, in fact, playing both sides of the house — assured him this wasn’t true, and Judd seemed to basically accept this.
A question we should start asking: Is Andy a genius? At this late stage of the game, he appears to have performed the unique trick of riding one powerful alliance into the final seven and then riding a different powerful alliance any further. Emphasis on “ridden”: Andy has constantly and purposefully eschewed making any powerful moves, which makes him an incredibly frustrating player to watch. But he’s managed to essentially turn the entire house into one big meatshield — and he’s been in the room for practically every important conversation this season.