Tommy is going to look back during Week #11 of Big Brother 21 as the moment his game utterly imploded. Why would he spill the truth about his secret connection to Christie?! That one conversation with Jackson and Holly caused a domino effect that built momentum all the way to the eviction. His eviction involved a variety of other factors, but this terrible move would only hurt the messenger than redeem him in any way. You would think he would learn to keep a secret after Isabella’s loose lips. Thankfully, these series of events delivered a thrilling and fun week right to the end.
For any future players in Big Brother who enter with a twist, remember this one golden rule: NEVER TELL ANYONE THE SECRET! Never. Ever. Telling the truth serves no possible advantage regardless of how well-insulated you think you are in the house. The only time it helps is when it’s revealed publicly to the house, like the exes of Big Brother 4, the pairs of Big Brother 6, or the enemies of Big Brother 8. Sure, Liz and Julia benefited from coming clean to the house about the twin twist in Big Brother 17, but once Julia entered, it still exposed them as a tight duo and Julia got eliminated early on after her arrival. And we can’t forget the DNA reveal of Cowboy and Nakomis’ family relationship on Big Brother 5, but they didn’t know each other before the season, so it didn’t help or hurt them. Revealing the secrets only cause paranoia and give the house reason to evict you.
Tommy could’ve avoided any blowback if he had not told the house. Christie had already been evicted by that point and she wasn’t going to tell anyone in jury; Tommy was the one who exposed his game and lies. By telling the truth, he confirmed that 1) he had a locked vote in jury, 2) he had someone campaigning for him in jury, and 3) he was lying all season long. Plus, his truth united Holly, Jackson, Cliff, and Nicole to prevent a jury threat from sweeping the victory. If he had not told the truth, Tommy would’ve had more leverage during his campaigning to Cliff and Nicole to stick around the house.
Speaking of campaigning, we have to give Jackson a round of applause for his masterful gameplay! He is rude, misogynistic, a bully, problematic, and a mess of other bad things, but we can’t deny that he’s a good Big Brother player. Eavesdropping will come away from Big Brother 21 as the new sound strategy that future houseguests will try to use or try to prevent. Jackson made the smart move to overhear Tommy’s conversation with Cliff and Nicole and then to manipulate those facts into a narrative that supported his ultimate lie. What he was saying sounds believable because those were actual words that Tommy had said, but not in the context or framing he had done them in.
Though, Jackson is lucky that Nicole and Cliff gave him the day to hold the house meeting. If they had forced him to have the meeting then and there, he wouldn’t have had the extra time to craft a concise and believable story to hurt Tommy. Preparation is key for weaving a web of lies this expansive; Jackson did his homework.
Ultimately, Cliff and Nicole made the wrong move in voting out Tommy over Holly. At the end of the day, Holly is in a tight showmance with Jackson and they’ve had to protect each other for weeks, ever since Six Shooters broke up. With the numbers dwindling, Holly wouldn’t give up Jackson at Final 4 unless she had to based on the circumstance. Tommy, who offered up the world, had the better track record. Plus, he looked and sounded so distraught trying to prove his innocence during the house meeting, it’s a shock that Nicole and Cliff didn’t believe him. But, as mentioned above about Tommy revealing the truth, the falling dominoes worked against him.
The return of BB Comix and BB Flix & Chill are two challenges that have become mainstays as summer favorites. How can you note love seeing current and past houseguests made into movie posters for blockbuster films? Or the current houseguests redesigned as superheroes? Whomever came up with the BB Comix game deserves a nice bonus for their hard work. Out of the comic books covers, the funniest and cleverest ones had to be Jackson’s Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde cover, Jack’s turn as “The Jackass,” Kemi as “The Keminator,” and Christie as “The Desti-Knee.” It’s hilarious to see all of the random references for every houseguest come back to define their comic. This competition should never go away.
Tommy’s eviction is a bittersweet moment. On one hand, he’s the biggest jury threat in the house. On the other, he’s better for Cliff’s and Nicole’s games to help get Jackson evicted. Without him, the outlook seems grim for the outsiders to have a real shot going against a strong and competitive couple. If Tommy had not revealed his secret, things would be different for him. I would like to see Tommy return to Big Brother again in the future. He’s had all the right qualities for playing and winning this game, but if he didn’t have a connection that he needed to protect and work with, his outcome could’ve been different. The same goes for Christie too. Would she have survived as long as she did or would she have gone farther?
Week #11 of Big Brother 21 brought to end the final remnants of the opposing alliance against the outsiders. Each one has fallen to “Kemi Karma,” and we’re left with the remaining few who splintered away or were kept on the outskirts. There’s still more karmic justice left to be delivered to certain houseguests left in the game, but this turn of events should become a lesson for future players: even the biggest and most confident alliance groups can crumble so easily over time. Tommy had a massive shield around him, but Lady Luck has a cruel way of planning the summer.