Big Brother 5, July 6: Getting to Know You, Getting to Know All About Youby David Bloomberg -- 07/07/2004
Big Brother is back. We are welcomed to the house like no other and told that 13 total strangers will soon move in. If it is indeed true that they are 13 “total strangers,” then the various rumors about twists will be quickly proven false. Anyway, those 13 will compete to stick around up to three months and collect the half million dollar prize. Oh, wait, here’s a mention of the twist – it is one “so shocking it will change the lives of some of our houseguests forever.” Ooooh.
Julie Chen introduces herself and tells us that tonight we will meet the 13 men and women (from 13 different states) who will be saying goodbye to their everyday lives to be locked into the house. They are total strangers who think they have nothing in common, but some are in for the shock of their lives. But she isn’t going to reveal the twist just yet. We have 88 more minutes to fill!
First, it’s time to surprise the houseguests with the key. Karen is going to paint the competition into a corner (she’s an artist – get it?). Jase is going to get all the ladies fired up (he’s a volunteer fireman – get it?). Jennifer always stands out in a crowd (she’s covered in tattoos). Marvin is going to bury the competition (he’s a gravedigger – get it?). Diane says the odds are in her favor (she works at a casino – get it?). Drew is going from twin brother (we see his identical twin) to Big Brother. Mike is going to let it fly. Holly says ditzy is her strategy (I’m thinking it’s her middle name, too). Michael says his heart is as big as his belt buckle (he’s a cowboy). Adria is going to push it to the limit. Scott is a player from Pittsburgh. Lori will be stretching her stay as long as possible (she’s stretching while saying it – get it?). Will says the other houseguests will get a taste of his medicine (he’s a nurse – get it?).
We hear various comments as they pack. Holly says she’s probably going to be called dumb a lot. We’ll try to help out. Jennifer hopes there won’t be any annoying cheerleader types. Cut to Holly. Marvin wonders about rednecks. Cut to Michael. Etc.
Now it’s time for more on the twist. Julie tells us that it’s called “Project Do Not Assume.” You’ve got to be kidding me. Wow, that’s so creative. Sheesh. Oh, wait, it’s because the first letters are DNA. OK, that’s a bit better. It’s called that because for the first time, two houseguests are related by blood, but have no idea. I’m hoping it’s Jennifer and Holly. But we won’t find out ‘til later.
All 13 are standing on the front stoop. I’m trying to figure out who looks like one another, but I’m having no success. Julie gives them the big opening speech about meeting a new best friend or worst enemy, etc. They will enter the house in three groups. Once inside, they will have a minute to choose a bed – each room has its own advantages and disadvantages.
The first four are Adria, Lori, Michael, and Jace. Jace and Michael see the boring room with very uncomfortable looking beds and pass it up. They instead pick a nice-looking room. Jase tells us that he hit the jackpot with tons of cute girls in the house. Nice to know his head is in the game from the get-go.
The next group is Jennifer, Holly, Scott, Marvin, and Drew. The guys in the first group shoo people away from the bad room. Holly and Jennifer end up in double-beds with Scott and Drew – one girl and one guy in each. Holly says the two guys are jock/frat boy types; she’s never lived in close quarters with guys like that and doesn’t know what to do with it. Wait. I thought she was the cheerleader – shouldn’t she be used to jock/frat boy types? Marvin ends up in a cot. He says his strategy was to pick the worst possible bed so it would look like he’s taking one for the team.
The final group is Diane, Karen, Will, and Mike. Will rushes ahead while Mike graciously allows the women to enter ahead of him. But it doesn’t matter, as all four are stuck in the room with the slab beds. Diane says now she knows what prisoners feel like.
As they get to know each other, of course alcohol is present. Michael says the ladies want to know where everyone is from and organizes a circle for everybody to share. Marvin is from South Carolina and a mortician. Holly asks if he sees dead people. Heh.
Speaking of her, she’s next. She is “Holly from Hollywood.” Oy. Will gives me my first guffaw of the new season by privately noting that she’s a nice girl, “but let’s not ask Holly to do any long division anytime soon.” Karen is from Jersey via Florida, and is a portrait artist. She tells us that Marvin is really over the top and trying too hard to rule the roost.
Lori is from Boston and recently moved to L.A. Marvin tells us that she’s hotter than lava. Adria is from Alabama. Will is from Tupelo, Mississippi. Scott is from Pittsburgh and was a professional football player but has a degree in business. Will thinks Scott will be his biggest immediate threat.
Mike is from Detroit and is overwhelmed by all the nice-looking people who have interesting jobs, because he doesn’t. He paint commercial buildings and has two sons. Holly asks who is babysitting and he says, “both their mothers.” This sets up a round of applause from the guys – because apparently having kids via two different women is something to shoot for? I dunno, they lost me there.
Drew just graduated from Miami of Ohio. Diane was born in Texas but grew up in Ohio. She has a twin sister – and Drew reveals that he has a twin brother. Hmmm.
Jase went into the air force and is a firefighter, but he doesn’t reveal that he is from beautiful Decatur, Illinois. I don’t blame him.
Jennifer introduces herself by saying she prefers to be called Nokomis. Um. Okay. Then why not just change your name and introduce yourself as “Nokomis” instead of “Jennifer”? Or is that just too easy? She says the name means “Daughter of the Moon” and it means a lot to her. The other houseguests seem to be like, “ooookay.” Jase says privately that Jennifer (bad boy, you didn’t call her Nokomis!) is a little different from the other girls in the house (ya think) and it might be hard for her to bond with them.
Michael is from Oklahoma and he rides bulls in his spare time. Jennifer/Nokomis tells us that he seems unique. An interesting comment coming from her.
Mike says that everybody was nice and friendly, but that will all change. Anybody who doesn’t change isn’t there to win.
Cut ahead in the timeline and it’s time for the first food competition. The kitchen currently has only peanut butter and jelly. They are sent to the backyard to each take a place on a mat. Holly says when she got outside, she saw this giant molecule science project gone bad (it’s a large DNA molecule). Yeah, and remember, Holly is just pretending to be a dumb blonde. Riiiiight. Hey, there’s the first time I called her dumb, just like she predicted!
The DNA molecule is described by Julie as a “food spiral.” On it are various colored balls, with yellow being most important – they each represent a different type of food. They have to collect as many as they can. One by one, they have to make their way across the spiral ladder (the “rungs” of the DNA molecule) and collect yellow balls. Each has 75 seconds to cross. If they fall, they are out. If they don’t reach the end within the time limit, they get no food.
Michael is first – he’s into the molecule, climbing along as it spins and grabbing yellow balls along the way. He makes it across in plenty of time. Jase is next. He almost falls as he’s collecting the balls, but makes it across with less than ten seconds.
Drew does likewise. The guys are directing Will to get the beer ball, and he makes it across. Jennifer is the first woman (she apparently did not school Julie to call her Nokomis) and does a good job. Karen makes it with a few yellow balls. Holly tells us that she got tuna and her cats like tuna, but they’re not here. Wow, she really is convincing as a dumb blonde. There’s two times now. But actually, she gets nothing because the whistle blows while she’s still on the spiral. She asks, “Did I lose?” Oy.
Scott is up and makes it across fine, as do Diane and Mike. Marvin is last, and he’s trying to grab balls that had fallen onto the ground under the spiral. But he only ends up with a grand total of two.
Each takes out their food balls and announces them. They get everything from prune juice to rack of lamb to diet cola to gorgonzola cheese to lobster tails – wait a minute. Lori is told to hold on to that ball.
Now it’s time for Julie to tell them about how the motto this season is “Do Not Assume.” In particular, don’t assume the competition is over yet. Lori is instructed to open up the lobster tail ball. She finds a key, which she uses to open a nearby box. In it is $10,000 cash. That money is hers. But wait. There is a catch. If she decides to keep it, everybody loses all the groceries and will have to eat PBJ all week. Ouch. That’s a terrible place to put her so quickly. In her shoes, I’d have to give it up – people are just looking for any reason to make somebody a target, and taking cash while making people eat PBJ is as good a reason as any. She is given a few minutes to think about it, but isn’t allowed to discuss it with her housemates.
But wait, there’s more! If Lori passes on the money, she has to pass the decision on to the next houseguest in line, Michael, and leave him with the same choice. Ouch. I’d still pass. Let somebody else take the heat, and then point out how selfish that person is, making them a target for the first eviction.
The others tell her to take it (what happened to not being able to talk to them about it?). Well sure they do – that makes her the perfect target! Lori agrees to take the money. Time will tell if it was the right move or horribly wrong.
Jennifer tells us that she despises PBJ – well, then you picked the wrong show. Marvin is not happy about it either, and he says she’s got to go. See, told ya. He also says he is 212 pounds of “solid steel sex appeal.” Oy. Scott is also pissed off about it. Several of them talk about the cash vs. the game. Drew says he would be nervous if he were in her shoes.
I should point out that they were almost all telling her to take it, but it sure didn’t take long for them to flip to the other side, did it? Told ya.
Lori doesn’t think people will hold it against her. That is immediately followed by Jase saying her days are numbered. Lori, Lori, Lori. Will says people are looking for scapegoats. Ya think?
Lori asks Will if he’s the gay guy (brilliant deduction, Watson). He says he wants to break out the gay card at the right time, and she celebrates the success of her gaydar. He says he’s not trying to hide it, he just wants to reveal it at the right time, such as by dropping a random comment about his boyfriend just to watch everybody’s face. Lori says she feels like she can trust Will and hopefully he will go to the end of the game with her.
Time for bed, and Marvin breaks his cot. Heh.
Marvin, Mike, and Jennifer/Nokomis are awake first and have a laugh about what they might eat for breakfast. Jase, Scott, Michael, and Drew are bonding. Diane joins them and they discuss who might be the first voted out. They all seem to agree that it will be Nokomis – it’s obvious, and nobody will feel bad about it. Ouch. She just isn’t fun to be with, they say. Jase says flat-out that he won’t nominate any of them. Oh, that’s smart – make promises now that you’re almost certainly going to end up breaking. Drew tells us that he thinks he jumped into something too quickly, but he feels like he can trust those guys. Ah, but wait. Jase, who promised loyalty, confides in us that he cannot be trusted. If the guys he bonded with slip up, he will turn on them.
Will tells Karen he thinks Mike is somebody they can reason with, but is told that Diane thinks he’s creepy. He does note that the alpha male contingent is who they need to worry about. He tells us that he wants to align with Karen and Lori, two girls who have integrity. Karen seems to agree. They all swear allegiance to each other. Will predicts that things will get real ugly this summer.
Julie reminds us that we have a “shocking new twist” – good ol’ Project DNA. So who is related, and how? Well, Michael (the cowboy) is the half-brother of Jennifer/Nokomis – they have the same father. Whoa. Looks like CBS has spent a bit more cash on their background research since the days of original Reality TV Hall of Shame inductee Justin Sebik. Anyway, Jennifer has known her dad for her entire life, but Michael has never even met him. Both of them are unaware that the other even exists.
We are treated to their stories. Michael tells us that he never met his real father – his mom had to be both mom and dad. He often wondered what his real dad was like. Jennifer to the contrary, has photos of herself with her dad. Michael’s mom had to work multiple jobs to make ends meet.
Both were born in Houston before moving on. Jennifer has always had more in common with her dad. Michael wonders if he looks like his dad. He was going to search out his father, but decided against it because he has a step-father who raised him and his brother. Jennifer says that her father taught her to never give up – he lost half his foot to a landmine in Vietnam but can run and walk and everything. Jennifer holds up a picture of her dad at a younger age – fade to Michael, who does look somewhat like him. Michael knows his dad served in Vietnam and had his foot blown off. He does know his last name, but that’s about it. However, he knows how important a father is, so he gives a lot of attention to his son.
Jennifer says the only type of brother she would want would be an older brother because then she could milk him for what older brothers are good for – he could teach her how to fight, she’d have an excuse to go camping all the time, etc. Michael says he’s always wanted a younger sister to protect. Well, it looks like you might have just that pretty quickly!
When will they find out and how will they react? Who knows. But guess what? There is a second shocking twist still to come!
In other news, the houseguests are sitting around the pool and Holly has them guess her last name. Wow, I hope this is the kind of excitement we can look forward to this season! Then it’s time for Nokomis to tell her last name – Dedmon. Michael was like, whoa. He starts asking her questions about her life – where was she born, was her dad in the service, etc. She tells him that he lost half his foot. Michael is, I think, going into shock right about now. Her dad’s first name is Guy. Well, Arthur Guy. He knew Guy was his middle name too. He keeps talking to her and finally has to get up and get some air.
To break in here, I don’t think anybody can truly imagine what Michael is going through. He has lived his whole life without knowing pretty much anything about his father, and then he comes on a reality TV show and, as he says, BOOM, there is all the information. He realizes that he has a sister in the house. I know I’d be in shock if it happened to me.
He says he came into the game to win it for his fiancé and son, and he didn’t want to let this information out of the bag because he didn’t want it to hurt him, and he’s afraid it could. But he keeps questioning her about her dad, and she cluelessly keeps answering. He says he kept looking at her, and there is some resemblance (she’s probably wondering why he keeps staring at her!). He even starts asking her about what she knows of her father’s relationships before her mother. She merrily answers his questions, never once appearing to wonder why he is asking what would seem to be rather odd questions. He keeps pushing and asks if she’s ever wondered if her father ever got together with another woman and she had maybe another brother or sister. She says she has asked and her dad said there isn’t. Um. She says she’s probably want an older brother, because she’s never had one. He says he wanted to tell her right there, but still didn’t.
Privately, he says he may end up with a new family out of all this. And again, he is obviously taken aback by the whole thing.
Day 2 at the house, and time for the first Head of Household (HOH) competition. The HOH is immune, plus they get their own private bedroom and will nominate two houseguests for eviction.
They have to immediately split up into teams of two, with the one remaining standing separate. It’s mostly the guys who team up and the girls who team up, except for Marvin and Adria – Will stands alone.
They have to get into their team t-shirts and then head to the backyard. There, they find that it has been transformed into an outdoor gym, but with a twist. Julie points out the six “treadmills of terror” (no, I’m not making this up). One teammate will be the walker, the other will answer questions as the talker. Talkers answer yes or no. If they are correct, the treadmill stays at the same speed, but if they’re wrong, it speeds up. Once the last question is read, the game becomes about endurance for whomever is left. If they fall off the treadmill, they will go right into a giant mudpit and their team is disqualified. The team who is on the longest has the shot at being HOH.
The treadmills of terror begin at a slow pace, and it’s time for the first question – based on questionnaires the houseguests filled out earlier.
So now it’s a matter of endurance. Every five minutes, the speed will increase until it hits maximum. Of course, Michael is already at max. And he’s gone in a big splat. Scott (teamed with Jase) is at the slowest speed while Karen (teamed with Lori) is somewhat faster.
After the first raise, Karen is maxed out at eight miles per hour, while Scott is still at five. She tells us privately that she runs up to seven miles or more at least four or five times a week. Scott assures us that he can take anybody on a treadmill.
Scott is up to seven miles per hour. Will is rooting for Karen because he knows he’s be safe with her as HOH. Drew is rooting for Scott because of their alliance. And now Scott is up to the max. But that’s it – Karen missteps and is into the mud.
Scott tells us that if he had lost to a girl, he’d have probably asked himself to be eliminated. And if he said that publicly, he would just be asking to be eliminated!
Now it’s time for Will to come into play. He has an envelope under his cushion, which he takes over to the two winners. Inside is a question about Will – and he must choose who should answer the question. If they answer right, they become HOH. If they don’t, the other gets HOH.
Will says that Scott did the work and asks if he wants to answer the question. Scott says no. Okay. So it’s Jase. And the question is: Would you assume that Will’s dream job is to own a high-end restaurant in South Africa? Well, if it’s not, somebody creative certainly came up with that. Jase answers no – and he is right. Will wants to run a medical clinic in South Africa. So Jase is the first HOH!
But wait, there’s more! There is another layer to Project DNA – a surprise that could put the houseguests into double jeopardy. Hmmm. Two of them have twins. You don’t suppose…
Yes, that’s exactly it. Julie says that one of the houseguests has an identical twin who is also playing the game. They look so much alike that even their own family can’t tell them apart. So they will be switching off in the game and competing as one person! Will they be able to pull it off? Julie will reveal their identity on July 15.
We are promised more twists and surprises as Project DNA takes off. And it is hinted that the twin situation will be revealed – which doesn’t really make much sense, but whatever. Julie tells us there will also be a new twist to the Power of Veto.
The show is scheduled for Tuesdays at 9/8 Central, Thursdays at 8/7 Central, and Saturdays at 9/8 Central. So be sure to watch and then, more importantly, check back right here at RealityNewsOnline for recaps, updates on what’s going on live in the house, commentary, and much more!
David Bloomberg is the Editor of RealityNewsOnline and can be reached at RNO@pobox.com.
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