Big Brother 5 "Position the habitat of your hamster somewhere light and airy,
away from drafts, heaters, direct sunlight and other pets.
Never put it on or near a television, radio or hi-fi or a fridge."

hamstersthat dingo's
Hamster Watch

This site isn't about who should win, who will win, who I'd be friends with, or who is cute. It's about watching hamsters: which ones are doing what and why. Which are fun and which are dull. If they aren't entertaining, get rid of 'em! More to come, bookmark & come back! .. that dingo

Daily feed recaps & opinion ratings navigation tool for this often-biased site
HamsterWatch Big Brother 8 here we go again
HamsterWatch Big Brother 7 Hamster all-stars in the house
HamsterWatch Big Brother 6 time to do it all over again
CBS Big Brother 5 the official site
Housecalls live web show with Marcellas, also archived shows
TV Updates feed updates, screencaps, and fun boards - easy to use and functional!
bb5fan's 30 second refresh screencaps if you don't have feeds (great at work!)
Hollyisms and Cowboyisms and Lisa-isms from me, that dingo person
Sir LinksALot Big Brother 5 all the links
Reality TV Links emphasis on individual hamsters' sites
Aldav has all of the edgier stuff & the best mini-recaps in town (alternate url)
Bonus must-click special: Karen's art site she's good

9/9/04 - Day 70    >> to the future    >> dwell in the past    >> latest

Eerie calm

Another Thursday - Karen cleans up, as usual, even though she knows as well as we do that she's not a live-in cleaning lady anymore

She puts on a brave front though, and keeps working right up til the end

(Karen's farewell is today's postscript)

The opposition talks about her as she vacuums around them.. Cowboy continues being blind to what's going on around him.. Nik continues getting acquainted with the mirror, even applying a little makeup for the live show
Cowboy: Are you nervous?
Diane: I just hope Karen gives me a hug when she leaves and doesn't blame me for everything like everybody else..
Diane: I wish I could tell her so she knows it's coming, but..
Diane: I feel bad, like I should be cleaning right now

Karen gives Nik an impromptu hug while deciding what to wear.. she thinks she's gotten too fat for all her clothes.. Nik tells her not to worry about it
Nik: I'll have to go tell DR that's one of my favorite moments
Karen: You know when you slap your ass and it's like a shock-wave through your body, it's time to lay off
dingo: more proof that producers are encouraging them to incorporate 'internet fans' shorthand into their vocab - they've always said diary room and now it's D-R.. ditto with C-B for Cowboy (nobody is going to come up with that spontaneously unless it's to save typing keystrokes)

Diane's nervousing (and lying more).. Nik watches.. Karen washes dishes.. Drew primps
Diane: The cameras are really getting on my nerves today, for some reason..
Diane: My chest hurts
Nik: Weird
Diane: I have no idea what I'm gonna wear.. not like I give a shit

Final four

The fishies claim their next victim, and then there were four.. but there's no joy in this celebration: Diane is ranting, Cowboy is pacing and nervousing, Nik & Drew seem detached, observing, as if they were watching Diane from out here, like us
Diane: You know what, I don't care anymore.. if anybody wants to get mad at me, ok
Diane: I'm tired of getting mad at myself about it
Nik: Don't
Drew: Don't
Diane: Adria, Natalie.. and Marvin, he hates me for some reason, and then Karen walks out and takes a shot at me
Drew: You know Karen - that was meant for me as much as anyone.. I told her I'd tell her if anything's going on
Diane: I am not a bitch!
(they laugh)
Diane: Ok I can be a bitch.. I mean, I have a big mouth and everything and I can be a bitch.. (something about her dad).. I learned what I had to do
Nik: You take it too hard when everyone leaves.. it's a game
Diane: I had promises to everyone in this game and none of them were to her
(Cowboy finally takes advantage of Diane taking a breath)
Cowboy: For what it's worth, I'm glad to be here
Diane: All right, final four
Diane: Putting Jase out was easy, putting Scott out was easy
Diane: I'm gonna go hang myself.. if I'm not back in 5 minutes (singsong voice) come and get me
Diane: Diary if you're listening, I'm ready.. I need to talk about how people need to be playing this game
Diane: When my dad cheated on my mom for a year, I could put myself in his shoes and understand why he did it
Diane: If you all wanna backdoor me this week, I'm ok with that! And I'll kiss every one of you on my way out
Diane: Cowboy, I'm really happy you're here, and I'm happy you're happy you're here
Cowboy: I don't know if I'm happy or not.. shit!

They settle into an awkward recovery from the last few hours
Diane (to Drew): Do you need the HOH room all to yourself tonight? To think??
Drew: No
Diane: You better let me sleep in there tonight! It'll be like old times.. remember when we had HOH for 2 weeks?
Cowboy: You should do it
Diane: Do what?
(Drew, Nik and Cowboy say they're sore)
Diane: From what? Oh, that game? (last night's bench-press-off) What about Karen.. she busted some out
Drew: She's got some calves on her! And legs!
Diane (to Nik): I really respect you for not hating me
Nik: It's ok, it's a game
Diane: My biggest fear was how you'd react to it
(they talk about Julie's question to Cowboy & Karen)
Drew: I figured out if I won the grand prize, I'd buy the Big Brother house.. and we could all hang out here!
Nik: I'd pay off my mom's house, buy a small house for me, give a bunch to my sister who's having a baby, and put about $50,000 away for me, for college
Drew: I'd tell my dad he can't work.. well, for maybe two days a week or something.. he works too much
Nik: My mom too - Mom, take a year off.. be a normal person
(Diane goes to diary room, they all discuss how she takes it too hard.. she returns)
Cowboy: Feel better now?
Diane: Yea, I guess
Drew: Feel better now?
Diane: Not really
Diane: The jury still hates me.. but you like me.. that's what counts

Cowboy unpacks - again - and carefully removes his ladies ice skates, puts them away.. Diane looks at us (?) or maybe just checking the mirror.. and calls Cowboy over
Diane: I'm sorry
Cowboy: It's ok, his ego got into it, that's ok
Diane: It made me feel even dumber than I was going into it
(they talk about being confused by the questions)
Diane: I missed like 4 of them
Cowboy: No you didn't! You missed like 2
Diane (laughs): No I didn't, I missed 3 or 4
dingo: Cowboy missed 1, Diane missed 3, Drew missed 0
the last I was aware, D&D were going to let Cowboy have it - apparently that changed

Diane & Nik have a moment alone.. (the subtle slips in Diane's wording say a lot)
Diane: I knew when it came down to final three, I didn't think I had a chance against the two of you.. and for final two, I didn't want her to be there
(that wording sinks in with Nik)
Diane: I was struggling all week, as much as I was struggling with it, I wanted to tell her but I thought it'd be better this way
Nik: That's cool, she would have just worried about it all week
Diane: That's why I wanted to do it the way that we did it
dingo: An advantage to being late updating these pages is what sometimes follows about the events: about 24 hours after this, Drew will question Diane about what she & Nik were talking about here: were they conspiring? Meanwhile Diane continues to put her foot in mouth with Nik and with Cowboy, and she continues to let her insecurities show around Drew

They come and go, chit-chat with some combinations.. whispering with others
Diane: Are you putting me up on the block tomorrow? We never officially..
Drew: What do you mean? That's the plan!
Diane: I know it was but..
Drew: That's what we talked about all week!
(Cowboy joins)
Diane: I wanna be true to my word with Nakomis.. basically I don't want to win the veto.. what if I accidentally win it and don't use it - what kind of story do I use? I don't want her to think she's being backdoored.. why would you put me up? You're supposed to be all head over heels with me!
Drew: I put you up last week!
(they practice speeches, what they'll say for nominationss, veto.. bla bla blah)
Diane: Just as long as we get her out!
Diane: Cowboy, you gotta sit down, you parannoy the hell outta people when you pace! Go get some damn cards or something
Drew: What should we talk about when she gets out here?
(Diane leaves)
Drew: Ok Cowboy, this week I'll probably be hanging around Diane a lot, again.. we don't want Diane or Nakomis to be suspicious.. you & I have to be soooo cool this week
(Nakomis and Diane rejoin.. they're all drinking, and gloomy)
Nakomis: Karen will be ok, she'll see our good bye messages
(Diane's expression betrays everything about her good bye to Karen.. I don't think Nik notices)

They see Drew's HOH room again - big deal, we just did this - he got Downy this time..
They get the four-seater kids' table - big deal, it was expected - and it's appropriate..
They sit around the fire for awhile drinking & chatting.. each hamster has his or her own feed now, but it's a depressing bunch
Drew: I don't think anyone (on the jury) will really have bad feelings toward any of us
Diane: No they won't.. I stopped thinking about it cuz I don't care
Nakomis (to Drew): Lick her tongue
Drew: Gross!!
Diane: What was the name of that movie?
Nik: Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels
Diane: I'll never remember that
Drew: Is that Cheech & Chong?

Drew stares at the photo wall, like they all
do sometimes.. like he did the night of his
live nominations (just before he said
"So what do I do now?")

Then he heads to the bathroom, and (in a
moment that turns my stomach) he phones home

"Mom, Dad, Ben, I'll be home soon.. with the money"

Already it feels like mom & dad have left the teens home alone - mac 'n cheese and turkey rollups are made between kitchen kisses and upside-downing the girlfriend

While Diane decides what to move into HOH room, Drew looks through her undies and calls in Cowboy to share his findings

Drew checks the spyscreen.. when he sees Diane approaching, he turns it off and pretends he's putting things away (he doesn't mention it to her).. then he kisses her ass, just to remind us all how he got to where he is in the game
Bedtime is the usual round of bickering, insecurities exchange, and inept kissing.. but not for long

Overnight burglar report: Nothing to report.. even the burglars are discouraged

Brilliance does not go unnoticed

So long, Karen - you did real good.
It took me awhile to catch on, but once I did, I was hooked. I didn't really follow her much for the first month or so, cuz she was always yakking on & on for days with someone, and there was always something more entertaining going on elsewhere. But then I started to notice a couple things putting these episodes together: nearly every screencap of her looked amazing - she is an incredibly photogenic person - and she was everywhere.

I started watching her closer then, and discovered she was meeting everyone on their own level - no easy task with this diverse group - and she was also listening to each of them. And complimenting them, and encouraging them, supporting them, and doing things for them. None of the others were doing any of this - no more than occasionally anyway - they're all too self-absorbed.
Sure, she bitched about most behind their backs - so do we! - but she was usually right on target. She was usually commiserating with whoever she was bitching with - which is good strategy for this game - and more importantly, she was usually bitching about someone's behavior rather than the person's worth, which is why she could go back to that person and be all friendly again. She saw the good stuff in all of them, along with the not so good.. something we could all do a little more of.

She was ridiculed by many internet fans for her constant cooking and cleaning, baking and eating.. but I never heard any of the hamsters complain. She was like Mom: always providing, always caring, not asking for much in return, and usually taken for granted. And she freaked out a lot, showing us she was human too. She was genuinely funny, and warm, and she was on a par with even Marvin when it came to raunch, giving us some of the more memorable - and steamy - moments of the season (don't pretend you didn't listen in on that!)

She saw something special in Nakomis and took her under her wing, guiding her all the way to the final four, without taking any credit for it herself. Karen's concern for the girl who's not quite as confident as she seems is genuine: she singled her out on her 'Early Show' appearance, saying 'Nakomis has a heart of gold,' something I think Karen can recognize when she sees it. But she was incredibly empathic with all of them, and that's something every human responds to.. and it can't be faked.

All these qualities made her a brilliant player of this game: she was on everyone's side as far as they were concerned - and that's what matters - without having to make a big pinky or any other kind of deal about it. Her diaries showed us that she was a lot more on top of things - and a lot brighter - than she let on to them. Her only mistakes were in not using offensive maneuvers when she could have (and should have, game-wise, but I think not doing so makes her a better person), and in not realizing soon enough that the horny kids in the messed-up romance had been left alone too long.. and that they weren't quite as dumb as they seemed.
Karen's a talented artist - her piggy and quick Nakomis sketch showed us that - but visit her site linked at the top of this page to see some of her professional work. Click on the 'Karen and' section when there: she's already met more famous names than the rest of these celeb wannabe's ever will.

I have no doubt Karen would have won against anyone if she'd made it to the final two, and I'm sorry she didn't. I'll miss her but I'm grateful I got to know her a little bit.. I wish her and the wonderful Laaaaarrry nothing but the best.

Today's ratings are entirely personal

You had to feel bad for the guy again tonight - just after the feeds came back, Diane was dancing around erupting with suppressed guilt, making Cowboy pace around looking worried - he was scared and he was definitely nervousing. He's made it to final four (who saw that coming??) and he did it by being involved in some shady dealings.. but I don't think he thinks he's done anything wrong - does he? He needs to start listening around some different doors and asking Nakomis what she thinks about the gruesome twosome instead of where her mother works? After ten weeks?? But it won't happen - our 4H loyalty poster boy has clearly forgotten that his brother in crime kicked Jase out, and the memories of all the lectures he gave Drew about that are obviously fogged too. But he's upgraded to neutral for providing the highlight of this sorry day: unpacking his white ice skates after surviving yet another vote, and putting them away in the wood room again.

I'm at a loss here.. she's volatile, despicable, and gives great tv.. but she's disturbing me a little more all the time. She's wangled her way to the top by being a lying cow, and for the last few weeks (at least) she's doing it all so she can stay in bed with the meathead who doesn't even like being around her unless he's copping a feel. So what's the problem? Every reaction she has is self-defense, and that doesn't happen accidentally. She's incredibly bright but doesn't know it, and she's incredibly fragile but won't dare let it show. She puts everyone down in order to build herself up, but then puts herself down most of all.. she fishes for compliments endlessly, but can't accept one. She's seriously screwed up, and has probably been seriously screwed over.. I don't feel sorry for her in an 'awww poor thing' way, but I think she's got what it takes to come out of this realizing she can overcome whatever's turned her into what she is. She's only 22! and despite her continual horrid behavior and 'bringing it all on herself', she's held herself together pretty well for any age. Never fear: I'll keep picking at her as long as she earns it, but it dawned on me tonight that she can't even apologize properly.. she does feel bad about betraying Karen but she can't even acknowledge it! so she goes on the offensive, or she sulks.. Her choice of words 'please don't be mad at me' spoke volumes.

Could he be any more pompous? He isn't disguising his contempt for Diane at all anymore when her back is turned, and half the time he didn't even hide it to her face tonight. He's living up to every bad stereotype of the jock/frat-boy mentality ('Hey Cowboy, come and look at Diane's underwear' - I mean c'mon! The guy's stuck in adolescence.) Now that he's big man on campus, he's stringing along both Cowboy and Diane by their emotions, not through any strategy or game of his own.. unless he's just naturally pondscum, which is looking more likely all the time: 'Hi Mom, hi Dad, hi Ben, I'm coming home soon.. with the money.' Winning this pivotal HOH by getting every question right - after guaranteeing both Cowboy & Diane that he'd throw it - is just a bit too transparent.. I hope they catch on in time. I despise this guy for making me despise him so much - and now I care who wins: anyone but him.

On her own now that her mentor's gone, she could have used Diane's slump yesterday and turned the beer and hot tubbing into a bikini kill on Drew, and she could have used tonight's awkward brother-bonding around the fire to talk a bit of game (the reluctant siblings could easily end up one-two if they'd clunk their dopey heads together in the next couple of days) but she did neither and probably won't, so she's likely outta there next week. I owe Nik an apology: I said yesterday that Cowboy has said the fewest nasty things about the others, and I've made much of his loyalty, but Nik's been straight-arrow for the most part - only getting really snippy when someone de-pinkify's one of her cronies - and she really struggled this week over the conflicting promises she'd made. The girl's got ethics - they won't help her in this game, but she can walk away knowing she's a better person than most. Plus she didn't blow a gasket tonight.

Thursday's show was surprisingly good, largely cuz of Karen's exit interview and her parting shot at Diane, which will have repercussions for days. Again, a good job compressing these bozos into a cohesive hour, but writers had to dance fast to come up with the dramatic line 'Diane joined forces with the boys' since they've underplayed the Drew & Diane thing so much on tv - she's been on that force for weeks! The music for Karen's farewells was way too sappy - especially since we already know Diane's 'apology' was phony (see Wednesday's HamsterWatch episode) but at least we got to see them. Great seeing Marvin again of course, and Will is finally living up to the drama queen role they hired him for - way to go Will! The HOH comp seemed skewed for Cowboy to win (but so was Drew's promise to give it to him.) Yet another ancient drunken shenanigans segment showed up to illustrate the immaturity in the house - again with no reference to the drunken part - hide 'n seek the other day was just as goofy, if not more. I was wrong (again) about the 'Psycho' lunch prep and moon shot showing up, but hey, I can admit it.

First out for playing well, but chameleon strategy is better defense than offense. Elevated the game with empathy, Oscar-caliber acting, and right-on-target rants. Most photogenic by far.

Funniest hamster ever. Provided joy, nicknames, dinners, trivia, laughs, insect tributes, golf commentary, and bowling lessons: he's cool & the gang.

Set off the end-game with 'How long you been dating?' Both pulled off Twingate brilliantly, but A's better as a solo act.

They should have kept switching - that house isn't big enough for both of them.

Not quite gay enough for the token gig. I'd like him in real life - but this isn't.

Hamster watching doesn't get better than this guy. Bath buddies forever!

The goon is gone - long live the goon :)

Unique, fun, annoying, ditzy, and oddly vulnerable. Bless her pointy lil head.

This year's Lisa, but without her luck.

xThe Don
Smart or not, he was first out: 'nuff said. Fold your arms and go home.

I need a job. If you like what you see here, please let me know if you've got one for me, thanks.

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