This season of Big Brother has seen its share of tragedy. Daniele tried to prove she could win the game without her father, BB legend Evel Dick… but the game proved her wrong. Jeff had a clear route to victory with an alliance that loved him… until one of his closest friends, Shelly, stabbed him in the back. You could almost look at this season as a portrait of generational conflict: The new players had big plans to sabotage the all-stars, but the Newbies’ tendency to betray each other (and occasionally just make incredibly stupid gameplay moves) gave the Veterans a shockingly smooth ride. But with only three episodes left in the season, viewers are mainly focusing on the most tragic contestant of all: Adam, the man who reached the Final Four despite the fact that he has done absolutely nothing all summer.
Now, maybe that’s an unfair assessment. There are many routes to victory in the Big Brother house. Making too many aggressive moves will put a target on your back. A good social game is only an advantage until the point when people start counting Jury votes. Players who base their gameplay on winning competitions (which is basically what Rachel did last season) are only safe until they lose a competition. You could certainly argue that the fact that Adam has made it this far is proof that his strategy of absolute neutrality – let’s call it “the Switzerland Offense” – has worked.
You could argue that. But you’d be wrong. Adam has made it this far purely because of forces beyond his control. The Big Brother house was split down the middle this entire season: The initial Newbie/Veteran divide quickly transformed into a constant battle between Daniele and Jeff’s respective squads. That meant Adam, purely by virtue of being the least-threatening housemate at all times, was never really in danger. Whichever side of the house was in power always had bigger targets in their sniper scope.
Adam certainly hasn’t been the only floater this season. Porsche tooted along for the first half of the season. Lawon’s only notable move turned out to be his own Big Brother suicide. Heck, Jordan – who looks like the easy pick to win the whole season – has only really gotten this far because of her close alliances with Jeff and Rachel. But the difference is that all these players at least tried to make legitimate game moves. Porsche has emerged as a minor force in competitions; Lawon seemed to realize that he was floating, which led to his Hail Mary play; and if the worst thing you can say about Jordan is that she makes friends with people who carry her to victory, then that’s not too shabby.
And that’s, I think, the first big gripe with Adam: There is no real way that his Switzerland Offense will lead him to victory. He’s so focused on not being eliminated that he hasn’t ever really thought about winning. Shelly got a weird amount of criticism for booting Jeff out of the house, but her strategy was sound: She seemed to be the first person to realize that allying with Jeff and Jordan was the best guarantee for a third-place finish.
But really, the main gripe with Adam is much simpler: Even if he’s not a bad Big Brother player, he is certainly incredibly boring. Big Brother is a game, after all, and the best housemates play the game with a flourish. By comparison, Adam is like the best bunter in Major League Baseball. Sure, it’s a useful skill… but it’s not going to get you to Cooperstown.
Fellow Big Brother fans, do you think Adam ranks in the upper echelons of the worst players in Big Brother history? Wouldn’t you have expected such a professed BB fan to have more insidious plans for the house? Or do you think Adam’s fandom was his Achilles Heel, preventing him from acting against his beloved Veterans? Do you think he has a genuine path to victory?
Follow Darren on Twitter: @EWDarrenFranich