Big Brother 24 – The Jury Phase

It’s been an interesting season of Big Brother to put it lightly, with many people ready to give up on the season after the first two weeks. They were, to put it lightly, a trainwreck. The first week was dominated by the irksome Paloma, an egomaniac who talked a big game and then walked right out of the house in a quit. The second week saw the straight-out-of-central casting Joe “Pooch” Poocharelli ask to be nominated as a pawn, and then be voted out unanimously.

But that wasn’t the dominant force of the first few weeks of Big Brother 24 – that was the cast’s bizarre obsession with pageant veteran Taylor Hale, who somehow became the most hated person in the house among 75% of the cast. The determined, likable Black woman seemed like she couldn’t do anything right – earning scorn and sniping from many of the women in the house, and intense hatred from a few like Daniel, Nicole, and Terrence.

The season seemed to be headed down a bad path, maybe as an overcorrection to last season’s dominant Cookout alliance. Then everything changed with the introduction of the horribly-named “Festie Besties” twist, forcing the contestants to play in pairs – being nominated together, competing for veto together, and winning safety if your partner won a challenge. This also saw the laid-back thrift-store owner Turner take power – and he managed to cobble together an oddball alliance of the house’s outsiders, called the Leftovers. Despite being out of the main alliance, most of the power players were in this group – and they successfully took out the other side’s three biggest threats, challenge threat Ameerah and the villainous Nicole and Daniel.

The “Besties” twist is over as we get to the jury twist, and the season is looking up – the popular Leftovers completely dominate now, not having given up power since then. Taylor won Head of Household in a tough endurance competition, to the applause of her many fans, but one more twist was revealed – after this eviction, the Big Brother house will be split in two, with two groups of five each playing an individual game of Big Brother for a week and each evicting someone. Depending on the way the groups are divided, this could either mean taking out some fodder – or sniping a major threat while they still can.

The game of Big Brother shifts fast and furious, but below Ray and Steve are going to look at who’s in pole position going into the jury phase – and who has one foot in the jury house.

Below, the jury phase power rankings for the jury phase of Big Brother 24, from least likely to win to most likely.

11. Terrence – Someone’s gotta be last, and “DJ Showtime” has done basically nothing to justify his slot in the game. He’s surly, picks the wrong alliance almost every time, and has offended contestants several times with his comments. As the one vote to keep Daniel, he’s out of the loop, and it’s just a question of when they decide to pick him off.

Terrence clearly overstates his prowess in the house and understanding of the game. Just when he thinks he has a nominee right where he wants them, his hopes are dashed and he’s right back at the bottom. He is on an island and likely to be out of the house tout suite.

10. Jasmine – After Paloma’s departure, this southern belle had a moment as the leader of the “Girl’s Girls” alliance despite her sprained ankle keeping her out of many challenges. Since then, it’s all been downhill. She’s mostly seen as a joke now, with everyone snarking about her behind her back and plotting when it’s time to pick her off – much like she did to Taylor.

Jasmine is likely to go shortly, but could last a little longer, possibly going after Indy and Alyssa, simply because she isn’t a threat at all. She is clearly not a physical threat and hasn’t shown to be mental challenge either. She could float due to this.

9. Indy – Does Indy even know what game she’s playing? There may be a bit of a language barrier, but she mostly seems to wait around to be pulled into alliances. While she’s better at challenges than the two people ahead of her, she may be even more out of the loop. Much like the rest of the non-Leftovers, it’s largely just a question of when she’s the target.

Exactly Ray. I almost feel sorry for her. The annoying thing about Indy is that she seems put out anytime she is mentioned as a pawn, even though she hasn’t earned anything in the game.

8. Alyssa – Unlike the rest of the outsiders, Alyssa has a close alliance – Kyle, who wants to protect her and may even choose her over the Leftovers. But despite her athleticism, she hasn’t proven to be a challenge threat and the two of them can’t even seem to figure out how serious they are. She could go deep if the Leftovers fragment, but I doubt she has the momentum to make a run at the crown.

Not only is she not a threat, Ray, but I’m not sure her showmance is much of a help. The rest of the leftovers are aware of the couple and not completely sold on Kyle’s allegiance to the over her. She will likely have to win something to make it much further.

7. Kyle – It can be challenging to wait things out until it’s time for an alliance to turn on itself like the Cookout did, but Kyle has taken paranoia and impatience to a new level. Between his transparent showmance with Alyssa and his suggestions of an all-white alliance to prevent another Cookout – which wasn’t happening – Kyle has lost most of his goodwill and could be an easy first boot for the Leftovers.

I most definitely think he will be the first targeted, if they don’t target him early given the chance. He is in a weird spot not knowing exactly what to do with Alyssa and making his alliance wonder about him. If he doesn’t make a sneaky deal, he is done.

6. Taylor – Taylor’s early-game struggles made her a popular underdog, and she has a lot of goodwill with most of her fellow contestants. That being said, they know she has the biggest underdog story in Big Brother history, and they’re likely to make sure she doesn’t get to plead her case. She has to go up against a trio of powerhouses to get to the end, and I see her underdog story ending before finale night. Her messy early HOH run hasn’t helped her case.

I have been a big fan of Taylor’s since her early struggles with the house. I think she has also endeared herself to America and could very well win America’s Choice. However, she has seemed clueless since winning HOH. It seems as if she doesn’t really understand how it works. Hopefully it’s just a hick-up.

5. Brittany – Has any contestant ever outperformed their bio more than Brittany? The psychic who boasted of wanting to eliminate all the smart and strong people has turned out to have a surprisingly savvy social game and an F2 deal with the game’s best challenge threat. That being said, her resume isn’t where it needs to be yet to win this game – her best hope is an extremely bitter jury.

The best thing Brittany has done in this game is align herself with Michael. His unbelievable prowess in competitions has kept her safe to this point. She has done well socially, but will need more than Michael once the Leftovers turn on each other.

4. Joseph – The young lawyer has played a key role in the forming of the Leftovers, but he’s overall maintained a more laid-back vibe than the other ringleaders. This could benefit him – if he gets there. But he hasn’t shown much challenge skill yet, and Big Brother becomes incredibly comps-based in the engame.

Yeah, Joseph has done well connecting with the house, but you are right, Ray, he will need to win something to make it far. At this point, he hasn’t battled very well and looks like he is riding coat tails.

3. Michael – Targeted right out of the gate for being a nerdy superfan, Michael answered the challenge – and is on his way to becoming one of the biggest challenge threats in Big Brother history. That also means his target gets bigger and bigger every week, and it’s likely his own side will try to snipe him at some point. That being said, could he win one challenge every week? It no longer looks that unrealistic – and if he gets to the end, no one could stop him.

If a player wants to make a big move and add to their resume, making a plan to backdoor Michael and get him out of the game would go a long way. Waiting too long could spell doom for the others.

2. Monte – There’s a type that does really well on Big Brother – Derrick, Cody, Xavier – and Monte fits that model to a T. Charming, physically dominant, good social game, and at the center of a key alliance. Monte is considered a threat and has been floated as a backdoor target multiple times, but as long as Michael is in the house he’ll never be the biggest target. And by the time they get to him, it might be too late.

Monte’s run could end early if Michael takes control again. He knows that Monte is a huge threat; making the move too early could have been a mistake. Not that jury has started a big move would make sense. If he can avoid Michael, he could find himself in final two.

#1. Turner – Speaking of outperforming the bio! This shaggy hipster looked like the season’s comic relief at first – and his deadpan reads of Jasmine and Kyle have been a season highlight. But he had the most defining Head of Household of the season – and no one seems to remember he’s a threat, despite him being a contender in almost every challenge. His short stature hides his strength, he’s a savvy student of the game, and he’s completely underestimated. As Michael, Monte, and Kyle go to war, he’s in the perfect position to emerge from the flaming wreckage of the Leftovers and win Big Brother 24.

You are right on, Ray. And might I add that he is one heckuva guy. He was the one to stand up for Taylor when she needed it most. Kudos to him! He is certainly clever and is liked by everyone. Even with a lesser resume, he could compete in the finals.

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