Vanessa is making a lot of moves in the Big Brother house now that people know she's a threat. With the Sixth Sense alliance ready to fall apart at any time, Vanessa has been making deals with other Big Brother 17 houseguests to solidify her safety in the house. (What a perfect strategy for the poker player to adapt, huh?) Vanessa folded on Clay and Shelli, two of her closest allies, but she's looking to stay in the house by aligning with the people that she ignored while a true member of the Sixth Sense. She seems to have a deal with everyone in the house but at the end of the day, which ones will she honor in order to get farther?
Having deals with everyone in the house is the same approach that led to mastermind Derrick winning BB16, but Vanessa doesn't seem to have the subtle touch that made Derrick so effective. Vanessa's strategy has gotten more scatterbrained as paranoia from the previous weeks has influenced her decision making. Her multiple deals could come back to haunt her if her fellow houseguests begin to compare notes. Who can Vanessa truly place her trust in within the house? First, for more on her gamplay, check out Bustle's BB17 podcast.
Steve and Vanessa have long been pals within the house, and Steve has yet to express loyalty to anyone else. This is a smart, and safe move for Vanessa: to have a main confidant outside of any large alliance. If their final two deal does get them to the end of the game, she has an almost guaranteed win.
Dark Moon 2.0
Vanessa has recently been brought into yet another large alliance with the intent of evicting one houseguest: Shelli. Vanessa has sworn safety to her alliance-mates as long as their target is removed from the house. The last time something like this occurred, it did not go well.
Despite having just formed an eight-person alliance to evict Shelli, Vanessa is still trying to secretly flip the house and have Clay sent home. She probably doesn't want to lose another strong female competitor in the house, especially one she has a working relationship with.
Vanessa has repeatedly attempted to use Becky as a solider. She has brought Becky into conversations and attempted to work with her with the promise of getting farther in the game together, but Becky is not having it. Her distrust of Vanessa leads to Becky saying whatever she thinks the poker player wants to hear, and then going around telling everyone that Vanessa is not to be trusted. It's not clear how this helps Becky's gameplay.
Vanessa and James made a deal to have Vanessa kept safe during James' tenure as HoH. After this week, however, there's no certainty that James will stick by her side. In fact, it's pretty likely that he won't.
Vanessa is doing the absolute best she can given the circumstances she's been placed in: Her closest allies have thrown her under the bus, and the rest of the house does not trust her. Perhaps the best move for Vanessa would be to ease back, play a little less hard, and hope that Steve wins an HoH. It's always better to be the woman behind the curtain when it comes to Big Brother.
Image: Sonja Flemming/CBS