With a half-month of Big Brother 12 left, it's now apparent this will not go down as one of the stellar seasons of the show. Mediocre casting was the main problem, because the thirteen houseguests perfectly illustrated one of the key BB truisms: the women always go after each other, while the men always try to team up. It's almost assured now that the eventual winner will be someone from "The Brigade," the four-dude (now three) alliance that has gone unnoticed all season long, even though the one thing you see in every Big Brother campaign is the young straight men in the house forming an alliance right away.
The Wednesday hour of Big Brother (CBS, 8 p.m.) will feature Ragan and Enzo fighting to get off the block, Hayden trying to de-Bieberize his hair, Lane seeing if he can become interesting after two months of refusing to do so, and Britney wondering what the world is coming to when there's a grouping of five people with her as the smartest one. I guess Hayden and Lane are co-favorites to win, and there's nothing at all inspiring about that.
Also this week:
Monday: Bachelor Pad (ABC, 8 p.m.): I assumed this was going to become a new summer staple for ABC and maybe it still will, but the ratings so far are showing that without the potential engagement payoff, not many really want to see these people again. This week, feelings are hurt as the result of a test, and the producers ramp up the speculation that there might be an actual relationship developing. Because this franchise specializes in that, you see.
Tuesday: Flipping Out (Bravo, 9 p.m.): Jeff Lewis's control freak ways are put to a test when he takes on the assignment of reworking a restaurant, at the same time it is still conducting business. Hey, at least when he sends one of his flunkys on a food run, they won't have far to go. Also, and speaking of things you can't control, Jett brings his baby son to work.
Thursday: Jersey Shore (MTV, 10 p.m.): An anonymous letter? Seriously? MTV is hiring old soap writers to work on this show, I am convinced. At any rate, Sammi and Jenni have it out about the letter, after what we're promised is a final breakup with Ronnie. Those two are like Luke and Laura: there is no "final breakup."
Friday: Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam (Disney, 8 p.m.): Is this like one of those horror movies where they promise it's "the final episode," and then there are at least ten more sequels? Because you know we can't be getting rid of the Jonas Brothers this easily. The siblings and Demi Lovato work to save their camp, under threat from a well-funded rival. Who will survive the epic battle of the bands?
Sunday: Keeping Up With the Kardashians (E!, 10 p.m.): Against all odds, this show still seems to be gaining viewers after several seasons. And with plots like this one, in which Khloe is afraid to tell her millionaire husband that she lost her expensive ring, who can be surprised?
Sunday: Mad Men (AMC, 10 p.m.): So are they trying to tell us that Don Draper has crossed the line from Social Drinker to true Problem Drinker? I'm amazed the new firm seems to be getting better situated even as everyone's emotional health is in a tailspin. In the event you're still not watching, most everything else is taking the Labor Day weekend off, so this wouldn't be a bad time to start.