Dan and Danielle wallow in the calm after the storm; Britney kicks a teddy bear's ass

By Andrew Fuller
Updated September 17, 2012 at 11:21 AM EDT
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“Fooled me once, shame on you. Fooled me twice, shame on me. Fooled me three times, I’m a dumb ass.” – Danielle

With this past Thursday’s episode coming as close to a climax as we’ve seen all season, it was time for a bit of a breather. That’s not to say, among the fluff, that there certainly weren’t some noteworthy moments.

First, it is my sad duty to report that Ian has apparently gotten Tourette’s Syndrome while in the BB house. “Quack” and “What!?” are the only words currently left in his vocabulary. He somehow also managed to belt out, “If you want to be the best, you’ve got to beat the best” about seven times in a row. To my knowledge, this is the first case of the disorder ever to be induced by reality show sequestration.

Moving on, let’s talk Danielle. Yes, she’s managed to get to the final three. Yes, she’s been played like a fiddle. Yes, at times, she seems like she may in fact know absolutely nothing about anything. Sound like a winning combination? As has been previously discussed, it may just be.

With each passing week, Danielle’s OMG face kept growing in the shock department (see previous recap for the best yet!). She better be careful, it might get stuck. Was Dan’s eviction of Shane the final straw for Danielle to take her trust elsewhere? She hinted that it might just be so, explaining “In my head I’m thinking, Danielle, you can’t let him think that you don’t trust him now. So I’ve got to put a smile on my face, nod and act like I agree with everything that he’s saying. I’ve got to regroup and figure out my next move, but all Dan needs to know is that we’re still A-OK.”

But, as aforementioned, Danielle had an authentic moment of deep introspection…I feel I know Danielle too well at this point to call it an epiphany (as she seems incapable of doing anything, only able to think about doing things): “I should’ve known. I guess it’s my fault. I guess I shouldn’t be mad at Dan, I should be mad at myself. Fooled me once, shame on you. Fooled me twice, shame on me. Fooled me three times, I’m a dumb ass.”

There’s no doubt that Danielle would not be where she is right now had she not had Dan “helping” her throughout the season. Dan has certainly thrown a few bullets in her direction, but I would argue that the alliance Dan and Danielle established early on could not have worked out any better for Danielle.

Despite being a dumb ass (don’t shoot the messenger), Danielle has proved to have one of the best social games in the house this season, charming the pants off everyone (except Shane of course), and also proving this past week that she could win when it counted – having won both HOH and POV competitions. But, given the length Dan has gone to keep Danielle playing in the game with him, and the fact that she has been part of a bigger strategy without ever once actually strategizing on her own behalf, couldn’t she be considered the ultimate floater?

NEXT: You say potato, I say prediction

For that very reason, it seems like Danielle would be stupid to try and make a move against Dan at this point. In fact, it seems like Dan is the only player Danielle has any chance to win against in the final two.

Similarly, because of the bloodshed on his hands, Dan’s only chance to win seems to be if he ends up being in the final two with Danielle. There are simply too many people on the jury who have a frickin’ bone to pick with Dan.

So my prediction is that, if Ian makes it to the final two, he will win the game. If it comes down to Dan and Dani, I think the jury will have a hard time awarding the money to a floater and go with Coach Dan.

Before the final HOH competition began, the three remaining houseguests were treated to a champagne brunch while they relived their favorite memories from the summer.

I think it’s safe to say that Britney’s going berserker on “Teddy” the Bear when she went up on the block has secured her as the front-runner – if she wasn’t already – for the likely favorite to win America’s “favorite player” vote. Ian is likely a close second as this season’s favorite lovable loser. Is it me or does Ian kind of remind you of McDreamy back in the eighties classic, Can’t Buy Me Love?

The season’s “best of” part of the show ended with Dan, Danielle and Ian sitting in the living room reflecting on the importance of this coveted space within the walls of the BB house. Ian looked sternly at his competition and said, “Ultimately, may the best duck win.” Quack.

With that, “Hook, Line and Sinker,” the first part of the final, three-part HOH competition began. Since this was the last HOH competition, all three players were eligible to compete. We were left hanging while the houseguests did the same, swinging across a pond from a giant fishing line, while they hung on for dear life.

Fellow viewers, what is your prediction for who it will be in the final two? Will America pick Britney or Ian as their favorite player…or someone else? Who would America pick as their least favorite player? And why don’t we get to vote on that, huh? Most importantly, who will ultimately win the half million dollars?!?!?

See you on Wednesday at the finals. It’s shaping up to be a great finale!

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