Filler scene about how Chicagoan Jeff can't pronounce "bully" or "bull."
Jeff, Casey, Laura, and Jordan head up to the HoH room to try to convince him to put up Russell. Ronnie's considering backdooring him instead, but they don't like any plan that would result in any of them nominated as pawns. That may just be too damn bad.
Ronnie shares their idea with Jessie and Natalie, who act open to it, but then Jessie warns Russell what Ronnie's thinking. Russell is smart enough to be worried, and not take Jessie's reassurances at face value. In fact, if anything, I would suspect that being reassured by Jessie must be one of the most terrifying experiences a Big Brother houseguest could endure.
A whole commercial break later is when Ronnie looks over the Memory Wall to consider his nominations. Laura interviews that she's nervous, and suspects it'll either be her or two other people from her side. Casey feels the same way. Russell tells the DR that Ronnie's in for a fight if he puts up Russell. As for Ronnie himself, he frames his choice as shaking up the house or playing it safe. Because he's the first HoH ever to face that choice.
The houseguests convene around the table for the nomination ceremony. Ronnie's fellow Brains, Michele and Chima, are of course automatically safe. Before starting, Ronnie wants to tell them something, and because he's got a captive audience, he can: "No matter what anyone in this house may tell you, we all are here to win half a million dollars. And I made a promise to my wife, I made a promise to my family and myself, even though I am a genuine, honest, and passionate person, I would play strategically. I would not play personally." He pulls the first key, and it's the key for Jordan. After her, it's Casey, Lydia, Natalie, Jessie ("First time I've ever had this happen," Jessie says as he drapes his key over his neck), and Kevin, which means that the two nominees are Jeff and Laura. He claims he's doing it to give them the chance to win the Power of Veto. Oddly, they don't seem to appreciate his thoughtful gesture as much as he might have expected.
Laura feels completely vindicated in her suspicions of Ronnie, and promises to fight for the Veto. Jeff has to give Ronnie credit for playing both sides, although he thinks the other side is playing Ronnie rather than the other way around. Casey babbles about how Ronnie has shown his true colors. And as we see Laura and Jordan heading into their dismal Have-Not bed-cube for the night, Ronnie explains his nominations to us: Laura is the one who figured him out, and Jeff is someone he trusts to be a pawn. But the bottom line, Ronnie tells us, is that this is just the first step in his master plan to ultimately evict Russell at the end of the week. I find myself oddly ambivalent about this, but I'm a lot more sure about one thing: this is probably not going to go the way Ronnie is expecting it to.