Cody, Enzo and Nicole F kick off the 3-part Final HOH competition — plus, the pre-jury comes back so Janelle can throw even more shade at Nicole F.
One of the biggest tragedies of this season of “Big Brother All-Stars” is that Janelle was evicted so early on.
Her joke about how she likes to get confrontational spoke directly to how the game has evolved into big alliances, no confrontations and a much more boring final result. Plus, her and Nicole F throwing epic shade back and forth was not going to get old.
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Thankfully, Janelle returned (alongside the rest of the pre-jury evictees: Keesha, Nicole A, Kayhsar and Bayleigh) to talk about this season’s Final 3 and what they thought of their gameplay — and beautifully, one of those Final 3 is Nicole F.
Tonight’s penultimate installment of this three-month experiment in tedium after a dominant alliance ran the house all season long spent half of its running time recapping the seasons of our final 3, so we got to see why Cody, Enzo and Nicole F all think they should win the game.
Then, the pre-jury weighed in with their thoughts, and everyone seems to agree that Cody definitely has the strongest case, including Cody. He’s played the best all-around game and has been doing it since he (questionably) won that first HOH of the season.
Reminder: There was still some wobbling on those posts when he took to the course in that comp, making it easier for him to see which path would yield sturdy footing. It was only after his run that Julie made the other hamsters wait until the wobbling stopped before even seeing the course.
The argument for Enzo appears to be his incredible social game, along with a few strategic wins along the way so no one could argue that he floated. On the other hand, he’s in the same boat as Nicole F in that they tied their games to Cody and he was so dominant.
Enzo, like Cody, has never seen the block all season. And the biggest argument he can make is that he was not a part of The Committee and yet he outlasted four of them in this game. He was the only disruptor to their dominance, and that’s a testament to his even stronger alliances and maneuvering through this game.
Nicole F didn’t win anything until she took the 12th HOH and Veto comps, where it could be argued she needed to step up and start doing something. She can argue that she let others do her dirty work, keeping that previous-winner target smaller on her back, until she ultimately took down Memphis, which is a huge get.
It’s a solid argument, but it’s going to need her to really sell it to a jury who’s already going to be reluctant to reward her again. Plus, we’d have to agree with Nicole A that her best shot at winning would be to not be sitting next to Cody — and the same goes for Enzo.
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Final HOH Winner
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Of course we weren’t going to get the full three-part Final HOH competition, but we did actually get to see who won the first round of it, and it was a much-needed victory for Nicole. She needs to keep padding that resume, and she now has almost as many comp wins as Enzo.
And it wasn’t just that she outlasted the boys, either. She actually outsmarted the challenge, itself, figuring out a way to minimize its physical impact on her as they had to hang on and spin around and around (slamming into a moon and a wall over and over). That was they key to her outlasting a battered Cody.
As for her overall game, even the pre-jury had to acknowledge that just making it this far as a previous winner is a huge testament to her game, even if it didn’t look nearly as flashy as the boys. In all honesty, that’s a problem in games like this, because women tend to play less flashy games overall.
They can be just as effective in achieving the end goal – Nicole F is here, after all — but they don’t look as good on a resume in a society that rewards big, bold, aggressive moves.
Many argue Nicole F beat Paul because the jury was angry with him, so it was more them voting for him to lose than her to win, but even then she was a returnee who made it to finale night. That shouldn’t have happened, either, especially as Paul himself was wanting to target them right off.
Cody is really only the obvious winner if you look at the more flashy gameplay. But there is not just one way to make it to finale night. Enzo did it on charm and relationships, being so likable no one wanted to target him. Nicole F reduced the target on her intentionally (or not) through much of the season, working alliances and relationships until she had to take control of her own game.
None of these methods is inherently better than the other, though history tells us Cody will most likely pull of this win. This is a jury of game-players, and if he’s sitting in that Final 2, it’s going to be hard not to reward his incredible season. Plus, he didn’t piss off the jury even as he started taking out his allies, so we’re less likely to see bitterness play in.
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The best way to look at this is to look at all the possible Final 2 combinations. We already know Nicole picked up a win in the first part of this competition. Odds are that Cody will pull out the next win, making him even more dominant.
Who wins the final round will be the key to everything, because if Nicole wins it and doesn’t eliminated Cody, then she’s probably just handed him the half-million dollars. We suspect she would cut him loose to better her odds.
Cody has said that he’ll take whoever gives him the best odds, but we think he’s got the edge over either of them. You’d want to say he’d have a better chance against Nicole F, but the jury might see a previous winner in Final 2 and just have to reward her for pulling that unlikely feat off.
Cody & Enzo: We give the edge on this one to Cody, because their overall games were too similar. Neither ever saw the block, but Cody doubled his competition wins and was a part of more key alliances throughout. Enzo’s argument is that he survived The Committee and had the strongest and most sincere relationships in the entire house, but he’ll need a bitter jury to sell it. (Cody 7:2)
Cody & Nicole: We do not see a way that Nicole can win this, unless the jury simply decides to reward her for being a past winner who made it to the Final 2. But as impressive as that is, it doesn’t match a season-long dominant performance in every aspect of the game. If she wins the Final HOH and chooses to take him, that would earn loyalty respect, but probably also be seen as a huge mistake on her part. (Cody 10:1)
Enzo & Nicole: This is the most difficult outcome to predict. The only way we get this outcome at this point is if Nicole wins the Final HOH and then evicts Cody, which would be a huge game move on her part. But then, she might still lose to Enzo simply because the jury thinks he was more likable and did more in the game. But, as a previous winner who won her way to this finale, that would earn her some points, making this one very close. (Nicole 5:4)
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- “I mean, are any of you guys surprised to see Cody, Nicole and Enzo in the Finale 3?’ –Janelle
- “Absolutely not.” –Bayleigh
- “We knew Enzo was going to make it far, we knew Cody had a million alliances and we knew Nicole wasn’t a threat. No one wanted to waste an HOH on her.” –Janelle
- “It’s almost commendable she was able to play the ‘I’m not a target,’ ‘I’m not a threat,’ ‘I’m friends with Cody.’ It did work for her. As frustrating as it is, she didn’t need to start playing the game. And when she did need to start playing it, she started playing it and that’s why she’s in the Final 3.” –Nicole A
- “I think Cody’s best game move was securing that first HOH. It really set the tone for the rest of the game. It gave him the ability to consolidate power by way of creating alliances first week.” –Kaysar
- “Cody having the final 2’s. I really don’t see Enzo taking Nicole and cutting Cody, I don’t see Nicole taking Enzo and cutting Cody. But if one of them does, I think that would solidify their win, whomever is the one who cut Cody. And if not, I think Cody wins.” –Nicole A
- “Enzo’s the most likeable out of the three of them, that’s what he’s got going on his side.” –Keesha
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- “It’s every man for himself. My only alliance is to my kids.” –Enzo
- “I’m loyal to both Nicole and Enzo, but if I win, I’m choosing I feel more confident I can beat. I didn’t come here this time just to get second place.” –Cody
- “Even though some people think Paul was robbed when I beat him on Season 18, I definitely deserved that win. And I know that I am one of the best ‘Big Brother’ players of all time. I entered this house with one goal: to make history as the first person to ever win this game twice, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.” –Nicole
“Big Brother All-Stars” wraps up with a two-hour finale Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET on CBS.
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