All plans are thrown out the window as an early departure surprises the house.
Big Brother

Alright, we have a lot to get into here. This is a wild episode of Big Brother. Let's get right into it, and jump into the fallout of the previous episode, where Paloma led a charge to get Taylor evicted from the house. A lot of this is sensitive and complicated to write about, so bear with me here while I try to present what we know without speculating about the human beings that play this game for our entertainment.

So, after Taylor is nominated by Daniel as a replacement for Michael on the block, she's obviously shocked. She didn't think she'd really be a target, but what hurts her most is Daniel's statement that she has been "rubbing people the wrong way" in the house. Taylor doesn't understand at all, she hasn't had any conflicts with anyone. So, she goes on a mission to talk to everyone in the house to try and figure out who she hurt and how she ended up on the block. 

After a few conversations, she figures out that her talk with Monte got back to Paloma, and that Paloma was the one to go around the house suggesting Taylor was a rat who couldn't be trusted. Taylor, to her credit, tries her best to smooth things over. She tells Monte that she was just trying to get him and Paloma to have a conversation about alliances and make sure they were on the same page. Then she sits down with Paloma to clear the air, but Paloma immediately shuts her down. She says she's tired and doesn't want to hear it, and the two butt heads a little before Taylor gives up in exasperation.

Big Brother season 24
'Big Brother' houseguest Paloma Aguilar
| Credit: Sonja Flemming/CBS

This is when things take a turn, just as we're leading up to the strategizing about the live eviction. We don't get a ton of footage or explanation, but essentially Paloma's mental health is not holding up inside the house. She's not sleeping at night, she's not eating at all, and her fellow houseguests are legitimately worried about her. Now, I know there's plenty of speculation online about what Paloma is going through, and I'm just going to say right now that I'm not commenting on any of that. I'm not in that house, I don't know Paloma, and I don't feel comfortable commenting on a stranger's mental health. I hope she's doing well.

All of this is to say that one morning the houseguests wake up and have to meet in the living room, and Daniel reads a note saying that Paloma has left the game for "personal reasons." Her departure changes the entire landscape of the first week. For one, there's no more Backstage Boss twist, which is a shame because it actually sounds pretty interesting! Here's what was going to happen: On this live eviction night, the players in the house who could vote were going to choose one of the nominees, either Taylor or Terrance, to compete in a challenge against one of the Backstage Pass players, made up of Alyssa, Brittany, and Paloma. The loser of that competition would be the one to go home. That's something new and exciting for Big Brother, and it's a bit of a shame it didn't happen.

Nevertheless, it feels right that Taylor is safe this week, that Big Brother decided to not do a vote and allow Paloma to be the first person "evicted" from the house, and instead get right into the next HOH competition. Alas, we'll have to wait until Sunday to find out who the next HOH is, as we run out of time on the live broadcast. With Paloma gone and Taylor still in the game, it feels like we're getting a fresh start on this season and I'm very curious to see how next week plays out.

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Big Brother
Big Brother

Julie Chen hosts as the houseguests battle it out.

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