On Big Brother 6, James Rhine relied on the Power of Veto to save himself from eviction. But after losing a tense veto competition on last week's Big Brother 7: All-Stars, where he and Janelle wrestled over a voodoo doll, he was eliminated from the game. TVGuide.com caught up with James to find out how it was in the house without his girlfriend, Sarah (his secret partner from BB6), and why he turned on the Season 6 alliance.
TVGuide.com: How hard was it to be away from Sarah this whole time? Last summer you at least had her with you.
James Rhine: Last year I kept thinking that having my girlfriend in the house was a handicap, and while it did handicap me in some aspects, being without her this time was [hard]. This was my first time being emotionally alone in the house, and I don't know if I ever really got over it. I missed her tremendously. Last year, because I was in trouble every week, I always had someone to just cuddle up with.
TVGuide.com: You seem like a sweet couple.
James: Despite the editing, we are a sweet couple.
TVGuide.com: You kind of seem different when you talk about her.
James: The funny thing is, my last night there I got drunk with everyone and was slamming beers and they were like, "Oh my god, we didn't know you had this in you." You are in a different world in [the house]. It is a "game face" and with Sarah being in the same house with me last year, the more people knew I cared about her the more she became a target or something to be used against me.
TVGuide.com: Were you hoping that she'd be part of All-Stars, too?
James: No. I wanted to do it myself this time. If she was, we'd probably be the first people put up. Without Sarah in the house, Howie had to come up with his own strategy this time. He couldn't just nominate her, so I wanted to make things difficult for him.
TVGuide.com: Did you go into the Season 6 alliance thinking you'd bail, or was it just because they lied to you?
James: No, more than anything I wanted to give the Season 6 thing a chance because last year I thought we were playing together, and we weren't. I gave them the chance, and the downfall was Janelle, whether it was [because of] bad moves on her part or not. I know they said I called her "dumb" a couple of times. Well, I'm sure I called her a lot worse than that, but I couldn't understand why Janelle and Kaysar were protecting Chill Town when we needed them to go. I needed at least one of them to go in order to reel in the other. I figured if we got rid of Boogie, then Will would have to join Danielle and me. I'm not saying I wasn't being selfish, because I do have my motives.
TVGuide.com: Who came up with the name "Legion of Doom"?
James: I think Will came up with it. I'm not good at naming alliances, and apparently I'm not good at picking them, either. I thought it was a cool name. It was fun for a couple of weeks. I thought I really had an alliance that I could actually trust, and I enjoyed playing like that.
TVGuide.com: You went out so graciously, even though your eviction must have come as a bit of a surprise.
James: Not really. There are a lot of good liars in that house, but the way you can tell that these people are lying is that they cannot hold it the entire time. If you ask someone if you are safe, or if you ask them a question and then you watch, like, 15 or 20 minutes later, they have already gotten out of the mode and they feel like they are safe and so they relax their guard. The thing that did surprise me was that I did not get Janelle's vote. I'm assuming that I got Danielle's, because I don't think that Danielle would lie to me. I think that's poor strategy by Janelle not to vote for me and at least look like she was trying not to get rid of me. I knew Howie was going home [the previous week], but I threw him the vote because I knew he was going to sequester. Janelle not doing that was probably a really bad idea, especially when it comes to roundtable discussion; Howie is going to wonder why she didn't vote for me. We'll see. Who knows? We all make a lot of good choices and a lot of stupid decisions. Going out like that... there was no other way to do it. I went out at the hands of Will, Danielle and Janelle — my competitors at that point — and those are three amazing players. Boogie, too, is awesome. If he wins this, he deserves it. There was no reason not to hug everyone [on the way out]. They are all great competitors... with the exception of two of them.
TVGuide.com: Are you dreading the sequester house with Howie and Marcellas?
James: Yeah. It is not my favorite thing to do. Marcellas is a little bit more tolerable outside Big Brother, but Howie and the misogynist attitude and jokes that are now two years old... he is not different outside of the house from how he is in the game. That is just him. I like my peace and quiet. I don't like hearing about Sarah's boobies, or Jedis.
TVGuide.com: We saw you get in that scuffle with Janelle during the POV challenge. What exactly happened? Set the record straight.
James: I saw the clip on The Early Show and I feel good that we tussled first over the wrong doll, the one that she had ripped out of my hands. She also kicked me. The kicking, I'm thinking, could have been accidental, but it was a struggle. I watched her throw herself into me when she took the doll, and I know we aren't supposed to have any kind of contact like that. She's a girl; had it been a guy I definitely would have fought a little harder. But there were rules in place and I figured that by following them, they would come out my way. But it didn't. I watched the tape and now I know it was the wrong doll, so I got some clarity, and a weight was lifted off my shoulders.
TVGuide.com: Which voodoo doll did you take with you?
James: The Chicken George one. This entire week I had taken the Chicken George doll and placed it around the house in different locations — in the nomination chair, underneath his pillow so when he lay down, it was underneath him.... It was just my way of having a little fun with him. I told him if I got evicted, I was taking his doll with me so I could give it to Howie.
TVGuide.com: Any wedding plans for you and Sarah?
TVGuide.com: I have to ask.
James: I know. She is hands down the woman that I want to be with, but she is very young — she just turned 24 — and I want to make sure she is making the right decision. I'm 30 and old. I've been there, done that and had my fun. I just want to make sure if we are going to take it to that step that she's got a little time under her own belt. Besides, I spent half a year of our relationship in this damned house. She might not even like me when she gets to know me!
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