Austin & Liz's 'Big Brother' Relationship In The Outside World Will Be A Much-Needed Reality Check For This Showmance
It seems like it was so long ago that I considered Shelli Poole and Clay Honeycutt to have the most eyeroll-inducing romance on Big Brother 17. But that, my friends, was before Liz decided to return Austin's affections, and the new showmance that rose to power in Clelli's absence began to kill me with their public displays of affection. (And, yes, even in the privacy of their bedroom, it's still a public display of affection because they know there are cameras everywhere, OK?) As we've all repeatedly been told, Liz Nolan and Austin Matelson are deeply in love this season, but I remain incredibly dubious. I mean, what would Liz and Austin's relationship look like outside of Big Brother? Do they really think their 80-something day romance is going to go the distance? They're not the most self-aware people in the world, you know. They think America loves them.
Let's start with the most obvious and immediate problem that I think the pair will run into: public opinion. In the Big Brother house, Liztin are free to explore their summer romance because, aside from targeting them as a showmance, the rest of the houseguests aren't really going to say anything against the couple. After all, what if Liz or Austin becomes HoH, and someone rats out to them that there's someone in the house that doesn't believe in their love? Exactly. But, in the outside world, I'm already anticipating that the pair are in for a Frankie Grande-level rude awakening when they find out that they are at the bottom of the poles for America's Favorites.
Even after they finally get online and realize that they were nowhere near as beloved this season as they like to think that they were, they will have to deal with their families. It didn't escape my notice that, when the houseguests received messages from home, Austin's message did not come from his parents. Is his mother busy consoling poor Jen — you know, Austin's girlfriend that he hasn't gotten around to officially breaking up with before asking Liz to be his new girlfriend? — while his father is busy wondering why his son is busy making himself look like a jerk on TV? Liz and Julia got to speak to their parents, but the praises heaped upon them by the Nolan family were in support of the twins together, and their game, rather than any specific approval of the scourge of Liztin. Would her parents approve?
I like to believe both the Nolans and the Matelsons have gotten in contact with one another outside of the house and have some kind of mutual agreement to nip this relationship in the bud as soon as they get out of there. Why would Austin's parents want him with a girl who has zero respect for other people's relationships, and has openly admitted that she doesn't care how Austin's girlfriend feels about their showmance? Why would Liz's parents want her with a man who had zero respect for her personal wishes, and basically aggressively pursued her until she gave in and returned his feelings, all without actually breaking up with the person he was actually dating? As enamoured as Liztin are with one another, they are kind of a parent's worst nightmare.
Now, if we add all of that on to the fact that Austin and Liz don't live anywhere near each other, it seems pretty clear to be that their relationship is in for some serious trouble once they get out of the Big Brother house. It's easy to make promises to move to be with someone when you see them every second of every day between competitions, but, when Austin and Liz return home, have time to watch the season, and realize that maybe they don't want to leave their respective states for a romance that they're starting to cool on... Yeah. Crash and burn.
The thing is, I have a strong feeling that Liz and Austin wouldn't be nearly as unbearable outside the Big Brother house as they have been within it. Austin will have time to formally break up with his girlfriend (not in a blog post, Austin, I beg you, please call the girl), and Liz will have time to widen her dating pool a lot more, and flirt with boys who aren't Austin. I think the two of them have the potential to be really good friends and, if that interstate friendship blossoms back into a relationship once all the dust has settled and the hormones have cooled, I think it will go a lot better than the one we've been forced to watch all season. However, I think more than anything that Liztin definitely need the distance that being in the outside world will bring to their relationship. Their rose-colored glasses view of their own showmance grates on my nerves.
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