Julie calls everyone back into the living room via the viewscreen, and to the surprise of no one, she tells the remaining ten players that the Golden Key holders are back in the game, and everyone is playing solo from here on out. After signing off but before sending us to the ads, Julie tells us they're about to decide "the most important HoH of the summer." Oh, Julie, they're all important, in their own special way.
Looks like another balance/endurance challenge. Rachel, as outgoing HoH, is sitting this one out, but everyone else is balanced on skis that are sticking out of a wall painted to look like a snowy mountain. Actually, they're just on small platforms with cheesy prop skis sticking out in front of them. It's simple: last person up there wins HoH. The only added wrinkle is that the first five people to fall off have to pick one of the fake snowballs on the nearby tree stump and open it to find either a punishment or reward. All Julie's saying about that is that one of them contains $10,000.
The competition begins, and the ski platforms start swinging from side to side while the houseguests hold onto handholds. After a minute or so, the wall tilts forward, shaking nobody loose. Julie goes to ads as though the HoH is going to be decided before the end of the episode. Which, it may or may not be by the time I'm done writing this.
When we come back, Lawon's looking a little pained, so I think a snowball is in his near future. Julie flogs the upcoming week's worth of shows as always, and says something about how we can "play a role in the next game-changing twist." But... wouldn't we have to care?
Everyone's still on their ski platforms, although some of the skis themselves are starting to look a little limp. Julie cues the snow and says goodnight. And Lawon is either about to fall or is concentrating very hard on his happy place.
M. Giant is a Minneapolis-based writer with a wife, a son, and a number of cats that seems to have settled at around two. Learn waaaay too much about him at Velcrometer, follow him on Twitter, or just e-mail him at m.giant[at]gmail.com.