‘Big Brother’ episode 17 recap: Was Paul Abrahamian’s game ruined by the Veto competition?

The Power of Veto was on the line and the threat of the Halting Hex caused tempers to flare on “Big Brother” Wednesday night. Did Paul Abrahamian get to the bottom of Jessica Graf’s secret power? And what showmances hit the skids in one of the most dramatic episodes of the season? Find out in our Season 19, Episode 17 recap below. Hurry — make your “Big Brother” 19 predictions for a chance to win a $100 Amazon gift certificate. It’s fun and easy, so start predicting right now.

During the nomination ceremony, Paul had put Cody Nickson and Jessica on the block expecting them to reveal their twist. After nothing happened, the house began to suspect Jessica was lying about her and Cody being guaranteed safety this week. Paul immediately pulled the duo into the HOH room to hash things out, but Cody wanted no part in being lectured by Paul about how to play the game. He said Paul might be able to treat the rest of the house like dogs who will do as they’re told but it wouldn’t work on Jess and Cody. It was gratifying to watch someone finally stand up to Paul, even if it was someone as neurotic as Cody. Jessica, however, was not impressed and gave Cody the cold shoulder for escalating the situation and hurting her game.

Paul went running to his minions to complain about how mean Cody was to him and get everyone riled up. Josh Martinez immediately joined Paul’s pity party until Mark Jansen told Josh to shut up, causing yet another argument. Josh then launched into personal attacks on Mark’s character before grabbing the pots and pans, banging them together and singing at the top of his lungs. Mark finally couldn’t take anymore and lunged at Josh, ripping the pots from his hands. The fact that Mark was wearing a tutu while this whole exchange took place would have almost made it funny if it all weren’t so childish and embarrassing.

Mark and Cody had a heart to heart about their torment within the house. Mark confessed that he was bullied as a kid and Josh had struck a nerve with him. More disappointing to the personal trainer was the fact that everyone else in the house just stood by and watched, refusing to stick up for him. Cody then confessed he thinks Jessica is done with him because of how he reacted to Paul. Mark said he was pretty sure Elena Davies lost interest in him as well. Suddenly, the two strongest men in the house found themselves becoming complete outcasts.

Paul wasted no time taking advantage of Jessica’s annoyance with Cody as pounced on her once she was alone to talk game. He let her know that he had no intention of sending either of them home; he just wanted to expose the temptation so the rest of the house wouldn’t question him. This was a lie of course, but Jessica is gullible and revealed to Paul that now everyone will come off the block, wasting his week as HOH. Paul’s mission was to convince Jessica that Cody was ruining her game and if she didn’t use the hex, they could vote him out and save her game.

Paul then pulled his minions into the HOH room to tell them all how brilliantly he manipulated Jessica. It was baffling to watch their excitement as he stood in front of them bragging about his game, yet none of them have even hinted at targeting him. Clearly these houseguests came to be voyeurs and have no interest in winning. Meanwhile, Christmas Abbott also worked on Jessica to convince her not to use the hex and told her she would be better off without Cody in the game.

Cody gave a tearful apology to Jessica for ruining her game and informed her that he didn’t know what to say to convince her that he was truly sorry. Cody said there was nothing he could say to make her happy, and he was right. Jessica was not interested in an apology; she simply wanted to lash out at him for being a hot-head. Stressed out, Jessica sought refuge by speaking with Elena, telling her that any money she wins on “Big Brother” will be going towards a Xanax prescription and a straightjacket.

Finally, after a solid 45 minutes of the Cody and Jessica show, there was some game play shown. The houseguests were given clues at all hours of the day and night to help them win the veto competition. They would have to remember details about storms named after evicted houseguests. It was finally time to play for the veto. Kevin Schlehuber and Raven Walton were chosen to join Cody, Jessica, Paul and Jason Dent. The players had to fill in blank spaces in a weather script by remembering clues they had received the day before. Paul won the veto by a significant margin and retained his power over the house.

Paul took one last shot at convincing Jessica to turn her back on Cody by telling her that Cody stated during week one that he would vote her out. Jessica told Paul that if she didn’t use her hex this week she wanted two weeks of safety and for Alex Ow to be targeted. Paul guaranteed her she wouldn’t be put on the block, but couldn’t guarantee her Alex would go home. If Jessica were smart, she would have demanded Paul use the veto on her as well, but her intelligence in this game only goes so far. In the end, the veto ceremony was never shown, so we will have to wait until Thursday to see how the veto was used and if anyone will be sent home.

Gold Derby readers just like YOU often turn out to be our smartest prognosticators, so it’s important that you give us your predictions. You can continue to update and change your forecasts throughout the week, just click “Save” when you’ve settled on your choices. You’ll compete to win bragging rights and a $100 Amazon gift certificate. Be sure to read our contest rules and sound off on the season of “Big Brother” in our reality TV forum. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

More News from GoldDerby