Big Brother fans rejoice. The grand finale is finally here, and the winner of Big Brother 18 will be crowned this evening and will walk away with one half of a million dollars. Not so bad for 99 days of work. The final three houseguests (HG) are Nicole Franzel, James Huling, and Paul Abrahamian. The 90 minute finale begins at 8/7 PM Central so make sure the popcorn is ready to go.
Diehard Big Brother fans must be going through withdrawal as the last full episode was aired last Friday evening, resulting in five full days without seeing Julie Chen, our beloved host. That is the longest we have gone all summer without seeing Julie. Tonight’s episode will pick up where Friday’s episode left off, the final three HGs were just beginning to compete in round one of the three-round final Head of Household (HOH) competition.
The first round’s competition was called ‘Hang in There Kitty’ and was an endurance comp for the HGs while dressed like cute little kittens. Endurance comps have been in James’ wheelhouse this season and also during season 16, but Nicole did pull out an endurance comp win this summer (albeit when James purposely fell off the wall giving Nicole the victory). Paul has performed very well in comps over the summer, so he can’t easily be counted out as a possible winner either. All three rounds of the HOH competition should be very competitive between James, Nicole, and Paul. We shouldn’t expect any one of them to run away with the HOH win easily.
Once the final HOH is crowned tonight, their duty will be to chose which HG to take with them to the final phase of the competition, the jury vote. Both of the remaining HGs will plead their cases to the jury as to why they deserve to win the $500,000. Of course, the HOH winner should take the HG that they feel they have the best shot at beating in votes from the jury. Rarely has it been beneficial to take a strong player to the final vote, but Derrick showed us that his word and loyalty to Cody was more important than taking the weaker Victoria to the jury vote. That decision won Derrick $500,000, but his decision is the rare exception to the rule.
Other prizes will be awarded tonight as well. America’s Favorite Player (AFP) will be announced based on the votes each HG received from fans at the CBS website. Important to note, James Huling won AFP for his gameplay during the Big Brother 16 season. The winner of AFP receives a very respectable $25,000 for their efforts and likability by the fans. Rumors running around cyberspace put Victor Arroyo firmly in the lead for winning AFP based on his record-breaking three evictions and two wins of the Battleback competitions. Even Julie Chen has weighed in on this vote, and she definitely agrees Victor deserves the AFP title this season. Big Brother also gives the second place HG a consolation prize of $50,000 which isn’t too shabby. That amount is only 1/10 of the winners spoils, but it’s more than most of the HGs make in one year at this point in their young careers.
The most important note about tonight’s finale is the history that could be made in the world of Big Brother. In the 18 years of the show’s existence, never has a female beaten out a male at the final two to take home the $500,000 prize. That could very well happen this evening if Nicole makes it to the final two. In addition, a female HG has not won the Big Brother title since Rachel Reilly won back in BB 13. Needless to say, a female winner is overdue, but many fans have not been shy to share their discontent with Nicole’s ‘snake-like’ battle plan this season. Lucky for Nicole, the fans do not decide the winner, only the jury comprised of her former HGs can make that decision if, and only if, she makes it to the final two.
99 days, the longest season in Big Brother history, have flown past us this summer. Tonight all those hours of watching Big Brother After Dark, all those tweets sent out questioning why Jozea could honestly believe he was the ‘Messiah of the Newbies’, and all the laughs when Big Meech or Paulie Calafiore broke down into tears over inconsequential happenings in the house will come to fruition and a new Big Brother title will be awarded to Nicole, James, or Paul. Lucky for us, we do not have to wait another nine months for the next season of Big Brother to begin like we have in year’s past. We only have to wait one week to watch Big Brother: Over the Top on CBS AllAccess to get our Big Brother fix. Until then…may the best HG win.
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