The Mastermind Award Nominees 2017: Best Blindside

What would Reality TV be without blindsides? If every vote-out was simplistic and straightforward, the industry would be dead. Thankfully, that is almost never the case and blindsides were in abundance in 2017. These are the four nominees for Best Blindside as part of the 2017 Mastermind Awards.


♥ Neda Kalantar

Although devastating at the time for a fan of Neda, Kevin and that entire alliance, Neda Kalantar’s eviction from Big Brother Canada 5 was one of the most shocking evictions of Reality TV this year and made for excellent entertainment. Neda, by route of a power given to her by the audience, had been safe since the very first week of the game. But she got greedy in her power and the fans, even her loyal fan-base, quickly turned against her. So when she was evicted from the game, a jubilant roar was heard from the audience and made it even more impactful. However, the most shocking thing about this blindside was that it came via Sindy Nguyen, a loyal ally to Neda in the game that season. Sindy had made a similarly bad error in her first season, BBCAN3, when she evicted Jordan. In her second go around, stunningly, she failed to correct her mistake, evicting Neda and essentially evicting herself as it was her that was sent packing a week later. The blindside also had a massive impact on the rest of the season as it served as the turning point in which Ika gained control and remained in power right up until the very end. A massive turning point and just a shocking vote all around, Neda Kalantar’s blindside is certainly one for the history books and might be the best of the year.

Alan Ball

When the Heroes, Healers and Hustlers first swapped, the game seemed to be set up for Alan Ball and his new alliance. Alan didn’t have a great relationship with Ashley, but they quickly put that to bed and pulled Devon aside, gaining the numbers over the two Healers in the new five person tribe. But one of those two healers, Joe Mena, still had an idol and was looking ready to use it to his advantage and take out Ashley. After correctly deciphering who the Heroes were voting for and playing his idol, Joe and Desi had the vote on lockdown and it was looking like Ashley’s time in the game was all done. Shockingly, the votes came Alan’s way instead and he was sent home.

Malcolm Freberg 

Famously known as the only time David Bloomberg has said that a player got screwed by a twist, Malcolm Freberg’s elimination from Survivor Game Changers was quite the surprise. If there was ever a season of Survivor for Malcolm Freberg to win, this was it. The former Philippines player seemed to have the game completely under control and had everyone around him under his wing. However, thanks to his good pal JT, Tai’s idol and Brad Culpepper, Malcolm was sent home prematurely. This was one of the most incredible tribal councils ever. If you don’t remember, it was the first time we’ve ever seen players getting up out of their seats to whisper in each other’s ears and it was also the first time in the American version of the show that two tribes visited tribal council at the same time to vote out one person. What’s more is that Nuku had a 6-5 advantage over Mana and there was no way that Malcolm should have ever gone home. Yet the foolishness of JT in telling Brad who they were voting for, led to his demise and one epic blindside.

Paul Loses Big Brother 19

Paul losing Big Brother two seasons in a row by one single vote both times is probably the most devastating thing to happen in the history of the show. But looking back on it and dissecting his game both times, it is clear that Paul didn’t do enough to win the jury over in either season. From any way you look at it, the shock and surprise of Paul losing the game both times, particularly in BB19 when he had controlled every single that happened in the house 92 days straight, will be one of the most talked about Big Brother moments for years to come. Depending on what side you were on, it was either heart-wrenching to watch the agony on his face as he lost by a single vote again, or amazing to watch Josh claim the $500,000 instead. Either way, it was so entertaining to watch and something that so few saw coming. Paul controlled every single thing about Big Brother 19, and that still wasn’t enough to win him the million. It was the greatest upset in Big Brother history and of all the blindsides this year in Reality TV, this one has to be the biggest.

So there it is! The nominees for Best Blindside as part of The Mastermind Awards 2017. Like what you read? Subscribe for more and make sure to be back here on December 5th to begin voting for all the awards! See you soon!

♥ = The Mastermind‘s choice for each award category.


2016 –  Michaela Bradshaw (Millennials vs. Gen X)


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