Time for the HoH competition to start, after Julie reveals that the results of the Twitter poll were 51-49 in favor of the first person to drop out getting a punishment rather than a reward. We cut to the backyard, which is draped with cheesy starscape murals, and where all of the houseguests (except Frank, who somehow always seems to be outgoing HoH even though I know that's impossible) are hanging from ropes around a big fake half-sun on the ground. Looks like it's going to be pretty simple: the last houseguest standing on the disk at the end of his or her rope gets to be HoH. Julie also warns that the first person to fall has to open a box that's sitting next to Frank. Whatever she says next is lost as a cursing houseguest causes the whole audio feed to drop, but she does tell them it contains either a punishment or a reward, without saying which it is.
Julie starts the competition, which for now just involves their ropes circling around the fake sun, which has begun misting yellow paint on them so Julie can make a lame joke about getting a tan. "Keep your mouth closed," Joe advises his fellow houseguests. Dan: "That's what she said." I'm actually kind of surprised that didn't get bleeped.
When we come back for the final sign-off, there are only five players still on their platforms -- yes, Joe has already fallen off. Julie promises another double eviction next Thursday, so I'm glad I get to be here for that. She gets on the intercom with the houseguests in the backyard and remarks on Joe's early elimination (though he doesn't seem to have opened the box yet), and tells them that a guaranteed one-in-six chance at the half-million is worth hanging on for. Cue a big phallic stuffed asteroid being swung into place for them to bang into. "Not looking good for your girl, Frank," Jenn says, seconds before she crashes into it, whereupon she falls off her swing and back into irrelevance. You know, normally these "endurance" competitions endure longer than the closing credits.
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.