Winning an HOH competition is the ultimate double-edged sword in big brother. On one hand, the HOH is guaranteed safety for the week and is afforded the luxury of targeting whomever they want for eviction.
Much of the strategy discussion this week in the Big Brother house centered on whether the presumed eviction target, Helen, should be nominated straight away or backdoored. The argument against option B is that even though nominating her straight away, ensures she plays in the veto competition, it doesn’t significantly change the probability of winning POV since only 8 people remain in the house.
A surprising scene followed the finish of the HOH competition this week. Andy, put in the undesirable position of bestowing have-not status on 4 houseguests, was met with an unexpected chorus of “pick me” as Aaryn, Helen, Gina Marie and Elissa all volunteered to receive said punishment.
Total number of wins in POV and HOH competitions is the traditional statistic used to evaluate competitive prowess in Big Brother. This simple metric highlights Janelle as the greatest competition player in the history of Big Brother because she holds the record of 9 HOH/Veto competitions wins in a single season. Similarly, it suggests that Dr. Will -- who won a grand total of zero competitions over 2 seasons (and 147 total days!) in the Big Brother house -- is the worst competition player of all time.
Every eviction thus far in Big Brother 15 has served the purpose of eliminating competition threats. Nick, Jeremy and David were all targeted and ultimately evicted based on their perceived ability in competitions.
Last week, I showed statistically that showmantic behavior is advantageous in the big brother house. The events that have unfolded since -- specifically this week’s eviction of Nick Uhas -- underlined some of the reasons why showmances are so powerful in the game.
David made it clear in confessionals and pregame interviews that his purpose on big brother was not to win a million dollars but instead to find true love. This comment was a spit in the face to those who revere game play above all else.
With 13 seasons of Big Brother (USA) and one oft-forgotten season of the Glass House mislabeled as a Big Brother in the books, the sample size is just large enough to do what no one has tried to do before: analyze Big Brother game play and strategy by the numbers.