UPDATE: Paul won Part 3, which means he won the final Head of Household. Then he made the worst decision and it cost him the $500,000. By one vote.

It was up to him to decide who to sit next to in Final 2 -- James or Nicole. We had just seen the jury roundtable with Dr. Will, with a lot of the women (including Natalie) revealing they were bitter toward Paul. Da'Vonne, Corey, Paulie, and Victor all made strategic arguments for Nicole. No one did much sticking up for James. All told, Paul's best move was undeniably to take James to the end. However, he evicted James and stuck with Nicole, saying it's because James tried to make a deal with Nicole behind his back. It wasn't much of an argument, and you have to give Nicole credit in some way for somehow being less annoying/more likable and worthy in Paul's eyes so he'd take her to the end.

Paul and Nicole were the final 2.

JUROR QUESTIONS: Natalie said some of the jurors think things Paul said crossed the line. Why should Nat give him her vote when he didn't give her respect? He basically said he is who he is, loud and annoying. Michelle told Nicole they, as a jury, are trying to find the one move she made to earn her the money. She said the Nat/Meech HoH move convincing them to put up Sitting Ducks. Corey said he didn't see Paul as a strategist. Paul said he was six times on the block and there was always a bigger target. Victor asked if Nicole was just riding the guys's coattails. Nicole said she was the brains and things went her way. (Da'Vonne seemed to like that.) Zakiyah asked why Paul deserved to win over the person sitting next to him. Paul said this was his first time playing the game. He wasn't scared to be involved and he didn't stay behind the scenes. Paulie asked Nicole why she deserves to win the money over the person sitting next to her. She said it's because she gave a 100 percent a thousand percent of the day. Even being called a snake on day one she tried to use as a strategy. James asked Paul why he jumped ship. Was he ever planning to honor James's final 2 deal? Paul said he chose Nicole for being the most honest and loyal, for bringing information back to him. (That's kind of an argument for Nicole to win, on that question.)

VOTES: They needed at least five votes to win. James voted for Paul. (Surprise!) Corey voted for Nicole. Victor voted for Paul. Natalie voted for Nicole. Michelle voted for Paul. Paulie voted for Nicole. Bridgette voted for Paul. Zakiyah voted for Nicole. Da'Vonne's vote got to decide it - and she voted for Nicole.

Nicole won BB18, 5-4.

She is actually the first woman to win "Big Brother" opposite a guy in Final 2, which is either fitting or ironic if you consider how much she sat back and let the guys run this season. The last woman to win "Big Brother" was Rachel Reilly in BB13, so congrats on that.

AMERICA'S FAVORITE: The top 3 vote getters were Victor, Natalie, and James (how?) and Victor won America's Favorite Houseguest. So at least he got $25,000.

INTERVIEWS: After the show, Paul said he was shocked by the bitter jury, and he's not sure he would've won against James, either, considering how the jury felt about him personally. However, the other houseguests, almost to a person, said Paul would've won against James.

Original story:

Your boy Paul Abrahamian or your snake Nicole Franzel: Who will win "Big Brother 18" and the $500,000 prize? (James Huling is still in contention, but his entire game deserves to be stuck in parenthesis.)

Tonight (Wednesday, September 21, 9:30-11 p.m.) is the big finale, and end of a record 99-day season filled with showmances, tears, battles, twists, and the occasional strategy talk.

It's possible BB18's underdog alliance, the Sitting Ducks, will pull out double wins tonight -- Paul with the big win, and Victor Arroyo with $25,000 as America's Favorite Houseguest/Player. Even Julie Chen thinks Victor will win AFP, and she's rooting for Paul to win over Nicole and James, saying she was "disappointed" with the gameplay from both vets.

Tonight is the live Part 3 HoH comp, which is Paul vs. Nicole (because Paul won Part 1 and Nicole won Part 2). This final comp will almost certainly determine which one wins the whole game. Last night, Nicole came close to admitting she would not take Paul to F2, if she wins the final HoH.

They are both confused about why James is being so chill, like he knows he's being taken to the end when Paul and Nicole have told each other over and over that they are taking each other. Paul even practiced his opening speech, and referenced Nicole (in a very complimentary way):

But now Paul and Nicole kinda seem to be assuming the other is lying, and really plan to take James. Let's hope they do! Whoever sits next to James should have an easier ride. Sure, he has friends in the jury and no blood on his hands, but he has no game accomplishments on his hands either. He might even find a way to throw second place, given the chance. Even Chenbot said she thinks James was just on this season for sh*ts and giggles. (Or to win AFP again for a second straight season, but he probably won't.)Here are the jurors who will decide tonight's win:

Da'Vonne Rogers
Zakiyah Everette
Bridgette Dunning
Paulie Calafiore
Michelle Meyer
Victor Arroyo
Natalie Negrotti
Corey Brooks
Third Place Houseguest

Paul, Nicole, or James will join that list as the Third Place Houseguest. James would most likely vote for Nicole to win in any context. He knew and liked her before this season, and they had an "understanding" (pre-season alliance?) going in, beyond both talking to BB16 winner Derrick for tips.

Our one true anointed king, Dr. Will Kirby, is once again hosting tonight's jury roundtable and he called BB18's heap of crazies the "best, most opinionated, most entertaining jury" he's ever seen, but also hinted to some potential bitterness and instability ahead:

"They are confused, conflicted and tormented, which is the sign of a good jury. When a juror comes in to this segment with a set opinion it shows lack of intelligence. A great juror is someone with an open mind because it means that they understand that the show isn't over and they still have an influence on the outcome. So, to answer the second question, they may reward solid game play but they are bitter too! [...] I will state that some that I expected to be bitter aren't and others that I anticipated would be totally objective are very emotionally volatile. Unstable, you could argue."

No matter who wins the $500K and AFP, a new season called "Big Brother: Over the Top" is starting September 28 on CBS All Access.

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