Austin's presence on Big Brother is quickly becoming more and more defined by his feelings towards fellow houseguest Liz. He spends most of his time with her, and when he's not talking to Liz, he is usually talking about Liz. Austin has even allowed his feelings towards Liz to affect his gameplay, turning his attention to getting houseguest Jeff out once he suspected that Jeff was flirting with "his girl" (insert eye roll here). For a competition where $500,000 is on the line, Austin is a lot more invested in winning the heart of a fellow houseguest than he is in winning enough money to start his own wrestling company. In fact, Austin's feelings for Liz on Big Brother 17 remind many fans of a certain cowboy from last season.
Much like last season, there's a very muscular man who repeatedly refers to himself in the third-person and spends time chasing after a girl who may or may not be interested in him. That's right folks, we may be witnessing the sequel to the most unrequited love in Big Brother history: Caleb and Amber from Season 16. But are their rocky showmances the only thing they have in common, or is Austin really the next Caleb?
Let's analyze all of the clues.
Caleb famously referred to himself as "Beast Mode Cowboy" through his tenure on BB16. The name came from Derrick after the first HoH competition and Caleb made it his personal mission to get that name to stick throughout the rest of the season. Rarely did a Diary Room session go by without Caleb referring to himself as "Beast Mode Cowboy." Similarly, Austin shares the trait of having a powerful alter ego who he calls upon in times of trouble. Unlike BMC, Austin's alter ego existed long before the Big Brother house. His WWE NXT wrestler name was "Judas Devlin," and Austin's second identity comes out to play whenever he puts on a top hat or enters the Diary Room.
During his tenure as HoH, Austin planned a dinner date in the HoH room for Liz, who accepted the invitation and assisted in the cooking of the meal. Amber and Caleb's date in BB16 didn't have the suggestion of mutual feelings that Austin and Liz's did. In fact, the key difference between the two relationships is that Liz isn't terrified of Austin, the way Amber seemed to be of Caleb, and is actually playing along with his infatuation to further herself in the game.
Caleb and Austin are both the most tattooed houseguests of their respective seasons. Austin's different tattoos hint at his philosophies on life and himself. Caleb's tattoos are primarily bible-influenced or vaguely tribal. Caleb also encouraged the other houseguests to get "Heard Dat" tattooed on them in remembrance of their time with the Beast Mode Cowboy. You know, "Heard Dat"? That self-proclaimed catchphrase that Caleb never actually used until he told people that he used it all the time. (Caleb was really weird.)
The most explicit similarity these two houseguests share is their penchant for jealousy. Caleb's obsession with Amber caused a plethora of dirty looks to get thrown at nearly every other male houseguest that Amber spoke to during her time on BB16. Austin's feelings towards Liz are so strong that when he found her lying in bed with Jeff, Austin and Jeff's feud exploded to new heights, and led to Jeff being evicted.
They're Not Playing The Game
Caleb wasn't really playing Big Brother when Amber was in the house. Instead, he was busy saying awful things about women and doing weird things to try and impress women. (Two Words: Pickle Banana). Much like Caleb, the majority of Austin's game moves have been on behalf of his devotion to Liz. Austin is extremely lucky that Liz happens to also be a part of the incredibly powerful Sixth Sense alliance, but what happens when his devotion to Liz gets in the way of winning half a million dollars? For more on his gameplay, check out Bustle's BB17 podcast.
Austin and Caleb seem to be having a lot in common, but thankfully it doesn't seem that Austin is as bad as Caleb. Austin's creepy behavior has yet to reach the absurdity of Caleb's rampant misogyny, but if Austin keeps on the path he's on, he could end up leaving one of the worst impressions on Big Brother fans this season.
Images: CBS (2)