Eric confesses his America’s Player actions to Jessica

Almost all of the most interesting parts of Big Brother 8‘s most recent nominations episode had to do with America’s Player; it was definitely another Eric-centric episode, starting with his Eric’s teary lamentations about losing the HOH competition, which he seemed to not care about winning. Again.

Offered the opportunity to receive a phone call from home by filling a separate container with water, Eric went for it immediately, which is not what someone who cares about winning HOH does, even if they are behind during that moment. What someone does if they want to win is immediately decide to punish the whole house when given the opportunity to help themselves.

During the HOH competition, the participants had the opportunity to use two additional cups; as Jessica explained, reading from the producers’ cue cards, “for each cup used, the entire house will go on cold water for one day.” Zach went for it immediately. While that obviously annoyed the others, how about a punishment that makes good television rather than just tortures the houseguests? Like, say, for each cup used, a producer will get their eyelids taped open for an hour and be forced to watch reality shows with engaging challenges like Survivor.

Anyway, Eric tried to explain his quick and easy decision to stop focusing on the HOH competition to us: “I didn’t want the phone call, but I was getting worked over in the competition at that point,” he said. “I was tired, and I was behind.” And you just can’t admit that you want to throw every competition. “I am completely embarrassed and ashamed,” he said later, apparently trying to convince America that it has a player who cares.

Meanwhile, Eric is as annoying as dog poo smeared on carpeting over his showmance with Jessica. First, he gave the phone call to her, even though he admitted that he and Jameka are the only two people who’ve had zero contact with the outside world since being in the house. And then when Zach won, Eric blamed himself for Zach’s eventual nominations. “This is an absolute nightmare. I am devastated that Zach is the head of household and this very well may come down on Jessica and make it a difficult week for her,” he said, apparently not thinking that he could possibly be a target.

Zach’s reign as HOH wasn’t well-received. The editors even had fun with how disinterested the houseguests were in going to see his HOH room. “Out of all previous HOHs, I have never in my entire life to be less excited to see someone’s pictures than I was to see Zach’s,” Eric said. Earth to everyone involved in the show: Now you how we feel every single Sunday when we have to suffer through a whole segment on people looking at the same room again. This is not television, it is filler.

Far more interesting was Eric all but confessing to Jessica that he’s the producers’ lapdog. “Eric, did you cast those votes?” Jessica asked. Eric said yes, and then made up reasons for each vote. But he told us, “actually, I want to scream from the rafters that I’m America’s Player.” So he kind of did. “There will be a couple more surprises!” he told Jessica, and admitted vandalizing Jen’s shirt. Between that and his erratic behavior, Eric might as well wear a shirt that says “I am a dumbass who can’t keep a secret, and I Am-Eric-a’s Player.”

Before the nominations, Daniele worked Zach by trying to pretend that she isn’t tight with her dad, but then together she and Dick promised Zach safety if he nominated Jessica and Jameka, which he did. It would have been more interesting for us had he nominated one of each of the two pairs, but he’s looking out for himself, not for us.

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.