Paradise Hotel, July 29: The Price of Powerby Jeffrey Clinard -- 07/30/2003
When we last left Paradise, Keith had arrived, and the guests were living together as follows:
Toni and Scott: Yellow Room
The episode begins with Keith telling Kristin that it sucks that somebody has to go home tomorrow. She's not going to say anything more about it, which is good, since he was upset at the warning she gave him in the previous episode. However, she still believes it. Keith's confessional indicates he's aware of the alliances - Zack, Alex, Kristin, and Amy in one, Charla, Tara, and Dave in another. Kristin admits Alex doesn't want to her to talk to the new people. She tells him she feels that if Alex goes, it's her fault. Keith reminds her that she said she wasn't attracted to him, but she claims she finds him attractive. Back in confessional, Keith tells us the people at the hotel are "sketchy."
Elsewhere, Zack tells Amy she's the most frustrating person he's ever dealt with. Amy tells him she doesn't feel it should be something they have to do; if it happens, it happens. She asks him if she should ease up, but he snaps back that it's her call. She doesn't quite understand the answer, but he goes onto another rant about how he wants to get to know her. He says he yells at her because that's the only way she'll listen. He's frustrated because he sees the real her as a treasure to be found and he's still looking. He thinks he's the person for her the most, but gets back the least. They both proclaim the other to be their best friend there and start embracing.
Breakfast at the men's table is interrupted by an envelope delivered to Keith. He gets a private luxury excursion with the girl of his choice. Also, he's warned that a photographer will be present to take pictures. Beau guarantees Keith he'll get a yacht. Keith goes over and talks to Tara and Charla about the selection. Tara says it's his choice and he indicates he might take Kristin. He goes and asks her and she's excited. He tells her to bring a lot of different clothes since they'll be doing a big modeling shoot. Kristin runs around and tells everybody, but claims she doesn't have any sexy clothes. The men are surprised by the choice and Keith tells Toni she was his second choice. Amy helps Kristin pick clothes but tells her she doesn't want Keith to pick Kristin as his roommate. In confessional, Amy indicates Keith isn't giving any clues as to who he's going to pick and she's worried.
The "alliance" of Alex, Amy, Zack, and Kristin get together, with Kristin surprised Keith picked her for the trip and Zack telling her she's got a lot of work to do gathering information. Kristin informs them that she's already hurt Keith's feelings twice. Alex thinks Keith wants him gone, and Kristin says it's all about kicking out the guy he doesn't like. Zack thinks he's the biggest threat to Keith and goes on to say he's more everything than him. A flashback to the selection is shown, where Zack claimed Keith didn't have abs and Keith took off his shirt to show them. Alex thinks that if Keith sends Zack home, it would be a slap in his own face, since he knows it would affect him. Zack isn't going to let that "little bitch" have power over him. Alex tells the camera that it's up to Keith to decide which guy goes home. No strategy; just his whim.
Keith and Kristin go off on their trip on a sailboat. They see the hotel from the water and wave at it. They do the photo shoot, with Keith's hand getting pretty cozy down the front of her bikini. Back at the hotel, Zack tells Alex he thinks Keith’s selection of Kristin for the trip is just an act to get people to think he's picking her for his roommate. He predicts Keith will drop a major bomb. Scott thinks he's a threat and wants to break up the alliance. Zack proclaims that Keith will be in a world of hurt if he picks him, Scott, or Alex to send home. On the sailboat, Kristin again warns Keith that people will get upset if he sends Alex or Zack home. He tells her he's in a predicament and it's not fair to him. Kristin informs him that everybody wants Dave out this week, Charla out the next week, and Beau out after that. Keith notes that Dave broke up Amanda and Beau when he came, and he's still there.
Over dinner, Beau and Dave chat, with Beau noting he's trying to get into Keith's mind. Dave says Keith wants to make people squirm. The other men join in the chat, with Scott noting it's going to be Keith's call. Kristin and Keith return from the trip and Kristin runs around saying how much fun it was; Keith agrees. Kristin tells Alex she didn't do anything wrong. Maybe he'd disagree if he saw the flashback of Keith and Kristin kissing. Alex thinks he'll be going home after hearing about the trip.
The next day brings the photos of the trip to the guests. Alex laughs at the way Kristin claimed they didn't do anything as the photos show Keith and her kissing, his hand down her top, and other sexy shots. Scott's confessional indicates that the men, including himself, are starting to freak out about Keith. Keith tells the group he doesn't want to send anybody home and doesn't want to discuss it anymore. Nothing is going to change his mind. He goes over to sit with the men and the women don't like his manner of leaving them, claiming it isn't manly. They try to summon him back, but he doesn't go. Toni says she'll get him later. The old Toni would let it go, but not this Toni. "Bitch," says Keith, and the men laugh. Kristin tries to shove Keith into the pool, but he drags her in with him. One of the men sarcastically notes that the move really helped the cause.
Toni and Charla go visit Keith in his single room. Toni says that if he ever disrespects the women again like he did tonight, she'll flip out. She didn't like the way he got up and left the women's table. Apparently, there is a "correct" way to get up and leave. She claims he's disrespecting her, and he tells her she's not always right. In confessional, Toni thinks Keith is abusing his power, or perhaps she's a paranoid nightmare. I vote for the latter. She doesn't want to room with him, and she's scared she'll lose Scott or Alex. BTW, I noted last week that her mood swings might indicate a chemical imbalance that can be treated, but a reader indicated her symptoms are those of steroid abuse. I'm not a doctor and can't make a diagnosis, but I hope she sees one to get treatment.
Time for another stupid Dave bet, this time against Zack. The game is tennis, and while Dave is pretty good, Zack has only played four times before. The loser wears a thong. Dave wins easily, and asks Zack when the big night is, today or tomorrow. Zack welches, saying he's not going to wear a woman's thong. Besides, he doesn't think any of the women have one that will fit him. Alex volunteers to wear any pair of underwear if Dave beats him at tennis. Dave notes in confessional that Alex was a "varsity" tennis player in high school, and is a "champion" (complete with finger quotes). He then proceeds to beat Alex. This time Dave is prepared with written agreements signed in advance, notarized.
A staff member hands out the envelopes telling the men to pack up as one of them will be leaving tonight. Zack's confessional repeats the theme of Keith having all the power and using it in a strange way. Scott concurs in voiceover as the men pack. However, before they leave, it's payoff time for the bets with Alex and Zack. They put on panties and proceed to stuff the front of them to enhance their "package." They join the others for lunch and Toni loves it. Tara tells them they aren't wearing thongs. Toni doesn't want them to change out of them. "Yummy," she says. Dave's confessional indicates he had expected Alex to be a man of his word. Alex says they'll get Dave back somehow.
It's a stormy night and Amanda comes out for the eviction ceremony. One of the longstanding guests (not original, since Dave was the first new guest) will be going home. She reminds Keith that nobody leaves Paradise without having had a roommate, so he won't be going home. When asked how he feels, he says he's not sweating the way the others are. He will pick last, breaking up a couple and sending a man home. Alex has first selection, and takes Kristin, which isn't surprising since they've been having sex. Beau is next, and Amanda asks him if he'll return the favor to Tara, since she picked him last week. He says she'll have to find out, and indeed picks Tara. Tara is asked what happened to make an impression on Beau. Flashbacks are shown of him and her on the bed (clothed), kissing. Beau says she is truthful and honest and he respects that. Scott's turn. He picks Toni. Zack selects Amy and says they get along great, despite their arguments. Dave is the last at-risk man to select, and Charla is the only woman without a roommate yet. She coyly looks at him like she expects him to pick her, and he does. He even touches her bare skin without her getting revolted - in fact, she's smiling!
It's time for Keith to pick his roommate. Dave's confessional indicates he's extremely worried he'll pick Charla and send him home. Zack's confessional indicates nervousness, and Alex thinks he's the one who'll be leaving. Beau thinks the guys are freaking out, including himself. Scott indicates that Keith has a lot of power and knows it. Amy's flashback telling Zack that Keith won't pick her is shown, as is Toni's fear of losing Scott. Kristin's warning on the sailboat is played, while Charla indicates she'll be upset if Dave leaves. Tara indicates people are annoyed with Beau, but she enjoys kissing him. Kristin's flashback of her fears of Alex leaving is shown next, followed by Zack telling Keith he doesn't want Alex or Scott to leave. Keith's flashback of him telling Tara nobody would know until he made the selection airs next. OK, enough already! We get it - the guys are scared they are going home; the girls are worried their favorite man will go home. Can we move on? Keith's turn is finally here. He picks... Amy! The men look stunned. Amy looks at Keith as if he's something other than human and says something that is bleeped out. She's in shock and starts crying. Amanda tells all the couples to take a seat on the couch, but Amy won't get up and keeps crying. Amanda asks Keith why he picked Amy. He says that nobody deserved to go more than any other person and he's just trying to play the game. Amanda tells him he did pick Amy, and they will be roommates for the week, so they need to join the other couples on the couch. Amy hugs Zack goodbye first and keeps crying. Amanda tells Zack he's the last man standing and it must break his heart to see Amy like that. "Totally," he replies. He takes a parting shot at Keith, claiming he was intimidated by him, and says he loves all the guests in a different way. Amanda tells him he must now check out of Paradise. He hugs everybody goodbye and asks Amy not to cry since it hurts him even more.
Toni tries to console Amy, but she says she's not having fun. So The Hulk comes out again, storming into Keith's room and asking him what he was thinking. Keith wants to know why she's yelling (didn't you WATCH the show before coming on it, Keith?), and she says it's because a friend of hers is crying her eyes out. She challenges him to make her understand why he did it. He responds he has nothing to say to her. The tactic works as Toni storms out of the room. His voiceover indicates it's a game and he's playing it. It would have been easier if he'd eliminated Dave or Beau, but he's not doing it to satisfy anybody else. Dave visits him next, saying it was a huge shock. He asks why he did it, and the calm approach works since Keith chooses to answer him. He says he couldn't trust four people that had been together since Day One. Outside, Tara, Kristin, Toni, and Alex chat, with Kristin indicating she warned him twice what would happen to him if he didn't make their decision. Alex points out that the girls voted for Keith, and calls Keith a "creep." Back in the room, Dave warns Keith that some people will react more irrationally to his decision that he is. He says people are going to be cautious around him. Beau's confessional has him storming that Keith doesn't deserve to be at Paradise Hotel. He thinks he can play God. Charla and Tara have a chat, and Charla points out that if it wasn't Zack, it would have been Beau, and Keith saved his butt. Charla's confessional has her saying she never told Keith what to do, and he never asked her. She's scared. Keith says that Tara and Charla have his back. He hopes they'll help finish what he started. Charla tells Tara that us "little people" are trained to be intimidated by the foursome. She wants to keep Tara at the hotel.
Amy, Toni, and Kristin talk, with Amy saying her feelings for Zack were real, and Toni assuring her they'd get through this together and get rid of Keith as soon as possible. Dave indicates that Keith is just playing the game and he thinks people shouldn't beat Keith up for it. He tells Keith to stick with it and says he'll be back. Keith tells us that he knows it will be hell on him, but he thinks the tables might turn. He wants to be there at the end, and again says it's a part of the game they signed up for.
I have to say it was a gutsy move to try to destroy the power structure, and while he'll take a hit, the "outcasts" (Tara, Charla, Dave, and Keith) might take control of the game. I always root for the "uncool" people to wrest power and kick out the popular people, simply because the "popular" people make me sick with the way they think it's their birthright to star on the shows. I enjoyed seeing the destruction of Chill Town in Big Brother 2 and the way the Marammu alliance stole Survivor: Marquesas away from the cocky and arrogant Rotu tribe members.
Next time, Amy goes on a rampage and promises Keith his time in Paradise will be a living nightmare. Keith thinks the alliance people are acting like two year olds. Two girls enter Paradise, and one gets to stay. All that plus a sexy toga party!
Jeffrey Clinard lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, with his cats, Lam and Princess. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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