Two double evictions mean four houseguests were sent packing to the jury house in shocking ways. Big Brother 23 has entered into the final weeks of the season, and as predicted in previous reviews, The Cookout survived to the Final 6. One of The Cookout members will be the winner of Big Brother 23. The alliance dominated this summer and survived many of the hurdles that could’ve torn them apart; there were many times that pushed the group to their limit and nearly broke apart. Just in these weeks alone, the tension was bubbling to the top. And now with the second double eviction, we finally got an answer to the question: what would happen once The Cookout had to turn on each other? Surprisingly, no one would’ve thought of sexism.
Before we discuss the post-Cookout phase, we need to chat about Week 9 and the first double eviction. Specifically, the negative treatment Tiffany received for winning Head of Household (HOH). The episode edit made it seem like Tiffany went rogue against The Cookout to win HOH once Azah accidentally fell during the endurance competition, but Tiffany told them beforehand that she would drop out once Kyland fell. Kyland refused to fall during the competition, so Tiffany stayed in to win to prevent him from getting another HOH. Why were they mad at Tiffany for winning but not mad at Kyland for dragging on the competition?
Xavier and Derek F. spewed so much hatred about Tiffany that it crossed the line many times. These two men were the epitome of unearned privilege; they talked down about her, threatened to get rid of her if she didn’t comply with their decisions, and minimized her contribution to the alliance. Their conversations become worse in the following week (we’ll get to this later on). These two are currently the most frustrating players in the house, and it’s most likely one of them will win Big Brother 23.
Tiffany, for as much as she’s hindered her personal game, always chose to prioritize The Cookout’s well-being. Case in point: nominating her closest BFF and Day #1 ally, Claire. From a personal game standpoint, her nominating Claire was a bad move since Claire would NEVER betray her. Tiffany made a similar bad move that the rest of The Cookout made, like Azah losing Britini, Hannah losing Derek X., Kyland losing Sarah Beth, and now Xavier losing Alyssa. It was so heartbreaking to witness Tiffany telling Claire that she would be nominating her; you could feel the genuine sadness over the decision that had to be made. From a mission standpoint, Tiffany had to do it to further The Cookout’s plan, so she succeeded in accomplishing her overall goal. Unfortunately, she paid for it through her overall Big Brother game.
The second Claire touched the block, it was guaranteed she would be going home. As with any non-Cookout member nominated, they were guaranteed to go. Claire’s only chance to stay would’ve been to win the Power of Veto or not have won the Secret HOH during Week 8. The moves had already been made against her. The same goes for Alyssa as well. Her elimination during the double eviction had been set in stone after losing both the HOH and POV; she was the last surviving non-Cookout member left in the house and she was standing in their way of reaching their goal. Alyssa couldn’t survive based on the decision she and the other houseguests made up until this point.
Now, we’ll dive deeper into the post-Cookout phase and the gender divide formed between men vs. women. Let’s make this clear upfront: Tiffany started The Cookout, and Tiffany made the master plan that steered the six Cookout members toward their goal. Others in the alliance made moves that benefited the goal, but for the most part, Tiffany contributed the most work all season to ensure The Cookout succeeded. So, why has it become the main narrative of Xavier, Derek F., and Kyland to state that the women within The Cookout did nothing? And, that Tiffany provided nothing to The Cookout except for playing selfishly?! It’s a conversation had between the men over several weeks that many fans have thought was misogynistic behavior.
Derek F., who has not won a single challenge and spent most of Big Brother 23 whining/sleeping/talking down to others, now claims to be the originator of The Cookout and did more than the women. Derek F. spent all of Big Brother 23 openly saying they needed to get the women out of the house. Xavier, on the other hand, has won a few challenges, but his strategic aspects only put The Cookout in more danger, like when he accidentally convinced Christian to nominate and target Hannah for eviction. Yet, these two men are openly stating they carried the women in The Cookout, that the women did nothing, they’re taking credit for moves done by the women, and that the strongest/most deserving people in their alliance are the three men. There is a fine line between targeting houseguests because they’re a threat and a negative stance—this has fallen into the latter.
Kyland wouldn’t have been so bad had he not agreed with their thinking and said the same things. He fully believes in the mentality of the men’s alliance being the best group. Kyland wants to take Xavier to the Final 2 with him because he wants to “compete against the best.” He’s fine to lose against Xavier because he thinks Xavier is deserving, but he doesn’t view Tiffany/Hannah/Azah as being deserving of that spot. Many have openly said that Xavier could win Big Brother 23 because he’s a threat who has a strong social and physical game; bringing Xavier to the end is the worst decision for someone who wants to win. If Kyland does it, it will be one of the most dumbfounded moves in Big Brother history.
Kyland, like other members of The Cookout, has a strong resume to win Big Brother 23. He did a lot of manipulation, like with Sarah Beth and Derek X., to ensure The Cookout made it far, and he won many challenges. Hannah made the key plans to ensure that Derek X. and Claire would be in positions to get evicted; she even took out Alyssa to complete the alliance’s goal. And to a small extent, Azah manipulated Britini into playing her part for the alliance’s benefit. Each member has contributed some portion to the success of the group.
Tiffany being evicted is a smart game move. She’s the most strategic player, she’s won challenges, and she’s built strong connections with the jury/players in the house. It’s a benefit for the others to have her leave because it removed one of the frontrunners. It’s a shame the others didn’t show her the same respect for what she’s done for them this summer and the sacrifices she made to help them get this far.
Hannah’s eviction during the double eviction was a terrible decision on Azah’s part. Why did she think nominating Hannah would be a smart move? Xavier, Derek F., and Kyland were clearly in an alliance together, so putting Hannah on the block only ensured she would be the next to go. Granted, Azah thought she was in a Final 3 alliance with Derek F. and Xavier, but even when Tiffany was around, the women knew that the three men had banded together. She made a bad move that hindered her chances of getting to the finale. It won’t be surprising if Azah is the next houseguest to go.
Week 9 and Week 10 of Big Brother 23 delivered two double eviction weeks in a row to set the next phase of the game. The Cookout got the opportunity to turn on each other and make the moves they long waited to do. It’s a shame that the nastiness emerged to cloud what would’ve been a good round of gameplay. The Cookout made history, but who will be the one sitting at the end to claim it all?
Big Brother 23 airs on CBS on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays at 8/7c.