While everyone tries to get settled, the season’s first nomination ceremony has the players stressed out
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After Wednesday's Big Brother season premiere, all of the players are trying to get acclimated in the house. Everyone is just getting to know each other, trying to be friendly and get a sense of who to work with, but at the same time things are moving fast. Daniel is already the first HOH, and the "Backstage Boss" twist has Alyssa, Paloma, and Brittany worried about how they can even impact the game in the first week. 

Of course, just because the players don't know each other that well yet doesn't mean they can't start playing the game right away. A few players are already deploying their social strategy as soon as the HOH competition ends. For instance, Michael and Brittany both lie about what they do for a living. Michael is worried that being an attorney will give him a reputation as someone who's manipulative, whereas Brittany thinks that revealing she's a hypnotherapist will have people thinking she's good at mind control or something. Michael puts in a good effort with the ruse, but Brittany is an awful liar. That's going to be a problem for her going forward. 

Then a few actual relationships start to form, as the players try to find their first alliances. Nicole and Terrance instantly bond as the oldest people in the house, but Nicole gets even closer to Daniel, forming a Final Two called the Rogue Rats; their "bond" seems to be built on each having a similar haircut and also having tattoos, so not sure how long that'll last. Alyssa and Paloma, both victims of the Backstage Boss twist, also form a Final Two, while Paloma also shares an emotional moment with Jasmine as they both talk about the loved ones they've recently lost, potentially building a foundation for an alliance.

A lot of the talk between the players is pretty standard first week stuff. They're all feeling each other out, sometimes making promises they can't keep, and just generally trying to gauge what everyone is thinking. If there's one sign of real division it seems to be between Taylor and the rest of the girls in the house. She's hanging out with the guys a lot, maybe flirting a bit too, and the other girls are taking notice. How much of Taylor's actions are gameplay versus just being her personality is debatable, but it doesn't really matter because the other girls perceive her as an instant threat, as someone they can't trust.

In fact, that bit of division gets Daniel's attention. In the diary room he mentions that he wants to nominate people who aren't super connected in the house just yet, that if he can nominate players who haven't made that many friends or formed alliances he can have fewer people angry at him next week when someone is voted out. Paloma mentions that the girls are wary of Taylor already, and that puts her on Daniel's radar.

In the end though, Daniel decides to nominate one person who hasn't talked game with him at all, and one person who's maybe talked too much game. Sure, Daniel says at the nomination ceremony that he's nominating the two people in the house who haven't really approached him, but everything we just watched tells a different story.

So, he nominates Terrance first, which makes sense. We don't see much of him in this episode, other than a brief conversation with Jasmine where he laments that he "doesn't fit in" as the oldest person in the house. Now, I get that the game has a history of outing its oldest players early in the game, but that should make Terrance more proactive. Instead he's sitting back and, in his words, "laying low." That's a crucial mistake, and I'll be shocked if he doesn't go home this week.

Daniel's second nomination is Michael. Now, Michael did talk game with Daniel and told him he'd keep him safe in future weeks if he wasn't nominated this week, and also said he was a big fan of the show. Daniel is not impressed with the pitch though. He says he knew Michael was a superfan from the moment he walked into the house, and it's clear that Daniel is targeting him because he knows he's a threat down the road. Plus, Michael's pitch does come across as more threatening than comforting, so I think his social game is going to be a struggle even if he survives this first week.

So, while I do think Terrance is pretty likely to be the first evicted player, even if there's some twists along the way, this was a pretty solid episode to get us understanding some of this week's main players and how a lot of the house is starting to think about the game. I'm excited to see how the rest of the week plays out. 

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Big Brother
Big Brother

Julie Chen hosts as the houseguests battle it out.

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