Julie Chen lies to evictee Michelle, who will be joined in the jury house by Ollie

Last night was Big Brother 10‘s double-eviction night, which always challenges the houseguests and the crew, particularly Julie Chen. These episodes always feel on the verge of falling apart, even more than the normal live shows. But there are just a few of those live shows left, as Julie Chen announced the season will end Sept. 16, in just two and a half weeks.

Anyway, after the houseguests learned that two of them would be evicted, they voted to get rid of the first: Michelle. With Julie Chen, Michelle quickly unleashed the conspiracy theory about Dan that she and Ollie have discussed. “I think he might be a plant in the house,” Michelle said, and I agree; Dan sort of looks like a wilted hibiscus. She continued, “Personally, I think there’s something more to Dan than meets the eye; one plus one does not equal two to Dan. Something just isn’t right about him and everything’s more than just a game.”

Then something strange happened: Julie Chen gave information about the game to a jury member, and even lied. While the ethically challenged producers haven’t had issues with other sorts of manipulation, they are intent upon not allowing jury members to learn anything at all that might affect their vote. Last night, they obviously decided that their host needed to correct Michelle’s mistaken impression. Julie Chen told Michelle, “Well, he might be the ultimate player of this game, because I’m here to tell you, he was not a plant, and you are sitting here evicted purely by game play by your fellow housemates who are all just like you, total strangers who went in.” Michelle simply said, “Then he’s crazy,”

So, let’s get this straight. CBS won’t let journalists ask jury members about anything they did not personally see in the house–and sometimes limit them even more–which results in a pile of interviews every week that are basically useless and pointless. But now, suddenly, Julie Chen is in charge of correcting the morons’ moronic theories. Totally hypocritical and obnoxious.

Second, Dan was, in fact, America’s Player for one week, and that had an impact on the game. Did that affect this week? Not directly, but it remains that Dan was, on some level, what Michelle and Ollie were accusing him of, so on some level, Julie lied. Still, Michelle’s declaration that Dan is crazy is a more accurate description of his behavior this week.

Anyway, here’s how the rest of the episode played out: Keesha won the temporary HOH after tying with Jerry in the competition–and then also in the first tiebreaker, forcing a second tiebreaker and causing Julie Chen to freak out a little about time. Keesha nominated Ollie and Jerry. Then the veto competition, which involved searching for two veto-shaped objects in hay, was quickly won by Dan but almost by Memphis; it was only the two nominees who had no chance of winning. Dan did not, of course, use the veto, and then they all voted Ollie out of the house. Julie Chen called his exit “the fastest exit in Big Brother history” because Ollie stood up and walked out after she read the vote but before she even said he was evicted.

Thus ends one alliance’s reign in the house, and the beginning of the other alliance’s self-destruction. And with the surprising new HOH having already been determined, that should start quickly.

Surprisingly, man not eaten alive on Eaten Alive

Eaten Alive

Discovery Channel’s happy family holiday special Eaten Alive aired Sunday, rewarding viewers for their two full hours of viewing by ensuring that they spent quality time in the company of others instead of wasting that time doing something else that might not have been as satisfying, such as buying things that have labels which accurately reflect their contents.

Winter 2015 reality TV debut schedule

winter 2015 reality TV schedule

Mark your calendars with all these upcoming reality TV show debuts, including Celebrity Apprentice, The Bachelor, and another season of MasterChef Junior, all of which kick off in early January.

There are also 20+ shows debuting in December--including the one-off return of The Sing Off. No winter break for reality TV.

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.