Before we get stuck in, let’s run a few numbers. We know, we know – it doesn’t sound like a lot of fun, but they’re crucial to understanding the Nominated Housemates’ state of mind, because they would certainly have run these numbers, already. So, here goes:
Only the Head of House (Terry) and Deputy Head of House (Themba) were allowed to Nominate Housemates, last night. Now, if each of them had four votes, that means that a maximum of eight Housemates could have been put up for Eviction: each with one Nomination from one of the Housemates.
But that’s not what happened. Instead, only five are on the block, which means – and this is the nub of the matter – three of them must have received votes from both Terry and Themba, with the remaining two receiving one vote from each.
Now, the Nominated Housemates cannot know for sure if they received two votes or only one, but a simple look at the probabilities means that each of them believes it is likely that they are among the three who did. We do know, however: Dinkybliss, Mvelo and Gash1 were picked by both Terry and Themba, and this has profound outcomes for the strategies at play.
Anybody who has been paying attention would not be surprised by Terry nominating Gash1. “There’s something about him that I’m very suspicious of,” she said during a Diary Session, last week. “Something is just off.” The fact that Themba nominated Gash1 is a little more surprising, especially since he didn’t nominate B.U. – the only Housemate he has clearly identified as a real threat, going so far as to make sure he shared a room with him, to keep him close. Why he didn’t nominate him is unclear: he’s either changed his mind, or he thought that it would be clear that Terry didn’t, and he would then be exposed as gunning for B.U. It’s complicated, obviously.
The fact that Mvelo was nominated is an even bigger mystery. Neither Terry nor Themba have ever indicated that they dislike him, or even see him as a threat. He’s actually been somewhat low-key, so far, so the fact that he showed up on both of their Nominations is a bit of a surprise.
The really interesting issue is Dinkybliss. Her Nomination by Terry was expected. “She played victim quite a lot this week,” Terry said last week. “When things didn’t go her way, she would throw a fit and not talk to anyone.” Dinkybliss’s erratic behaviour was commented on by quite a few Housemates, but the most striking comments came from Themba.
“She has two characters. I know how to get around her.” This begs the question – if he thinks he has her under his thumb, why on Earth would he Nominate her for Eviction? After all, he went on to say that he was “able to get any information from her.” Why run the risk of losing an invaluable source of backchannel information?
Of course, he claimed that it was because she didn’t get along with the other Housemates, but why should he care about that? That’s not his problem, surely? Besides, if that were the case, he could just wait for those other Housemates to take care of her, themselves.
Two other – more plausible – possibilities come to mind. First, he’s realised that Dinkybliss isn’t quite his to control. During her Diary Session on the very same day, Dinky said, “Themba thinks he can use me for information, but I’m feeding him the wrong info.” If Themba realised that she’s onto him, that might be enough cause for him to try and remove her from the game.
The second possibility is that he was somewhat taken aback by her behaviour during the Saturday Night Party. She very clearly made her crush on him a point of conversation, which he shot down by saying she is more like his “sister”.
When she suggested that they had come close to a sexual encounter of a sort already, he seemed genuinely shocked, insisting that it never happened. Perhaps that was enough for Themba to want to simplify what could turn out to be a very complicated situation.
As far as Mphowabadimo and Norman are concerned, there isn’t much to say. Obviously, neither of them particularly like being Nominated, but we don’t have a lot of insight as to why they were. Neither has come up in Diary Sessions with either Terry or Themba, so it’s a bit of a mystery, for now.
Of course, all of this number crunching can turn into a bit of a nightmare for Terry and Themba, later. There are now five Housemates who all have good reason to believe that they were nominated by both Terry and Themba, which means that they have plenty of reason to return the favour the first moment they get the chance. It seems that winning the Head of House and Deputy Head of House titles is a bit of a double-edged sword.