DAngelus August 3, 2015 Share August 3, 2015 Ahh, Johnny Mack. Still enjoyable, even after a quiet week. And apparently quite popular, given that he got a family segment even though he wasn't on the block or HoH. And yet…there's a backlash I've seen in some live feed threads. They're like, "why is John so popular? He doesn't do anything! And he always agrees to throw the comps, he's just a puppet they're moving around, he's a floater!" But I don't think this is a valid line of criticism. John, like Becky, is "playing a quiet game", it's true. But he's built connections to everyone in the house (the reason people think he's a good pawn is because he's well-liked) and when we see him during the episodes, when we can get close-ups of his face that might not be seen on the feeds, you can see him observing and thinking, as in the sequence when Liz read her HoH letter and John was noticing how generic it was. Yes, he can go completely blank when someone asks him to throw a competition, but I'm thinking that's just his poker face. And I thought that John handled being asked to stay on the block after winning Veto (in Week 2) much better than I would have. Not only did he avoid laughing in Clay and Shelli's faces (or simply saying "fuck you") but he pointed out how it would look suspicious if he didn't use it, that it would cue that he was working with C/S, but he didn't go into chapter and verse as I might have. He said it, let them consider it, nicely dodged the "well, who do you think the replacement nominee should be?" name-your-target trap with an "it doesn't matter", and got out of the week with both safety and a stronger relationship with Clay/Shelli moving forward. It's funny that in Week 3, Vanessa was congratulating herself (and Austin) for making specific promises to John for his efforts (as opposed to the general "we'll look out for you" he got from Clay and Shelli), but actually, the combination of the two seems to serve John the best. Where Clay and Shelli may think of him as a potential late-game ally (which is why they were torn about having him throw BotB in Week 4 and Shelli eventually told him to win it…only to fail once again because his partner couldn't get the right strategy), the "we won't put you up or vote against you" flat promise he got from Vanessa in Week 3 served him very well in Week 5. I like his game so far, and IMO it's only a question of when he makes his move. (I'd guess John's looking to win HoH somewhere around F8, and get Clay and Shelli to come with him and whatever stragglers he has [becky and Meg, say] in exchange for putting up Vanessa and Austin. That gives his group the numbers going forward, and if the remnants of Sixth Sense were to regain power, he'd be less of a target than Clay/Shelli would be for selling out the others. But that's just a guess.) Link to comment
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