TV Review: Big Brother

By Jordan Bradley

The reality television show, “Big Brother”, has been an incredible success for 15 seasons. In the show, 16 strangers are isolated in a house away from the rest of the world, and fight being evicted each week to win a grand prize of half a million dollars.

Each week, the houseguests play in three different competitions, ranging from agility to mental, to determine their status in the house. The first of the three is the Head of Household (HOH), and whoever wins this challenge gets to nominate two other houseguests to put up on the chopping block for eviction. A few days later, the two nominees and the HOH each draw a random other houseguest’s name and they play with the other players whose names were drawn for the veto competition.  The veto competition determines the fate of the nominees. The player that wins the veto can use the veto to take one of the nominees off the block, or they can choose to keep nominations the same. If they decide to take someone off the block, the HOH must choose another houseguest to replace the nominee, but the veto winner is not eligible to be put up.

The third competition is a have or have-not competition.  The houseguests split into teams of three, and the team that finishes last become have-nots for the week.  Being a have-not includes only being able to eat Big Brother’s SLOP (what is rumored to be a bland oatmeal concoction), only allowed cold showers, and they are forced to sleep in an uncomfortable room which hardly ever contains the comfort of a bed.

The rest of the time spent in the house is either fun, relaxation, strategy talk between the houseguests, and often fights between houseguests. A common strategy is to form an alliance with other houseguests.  By doing this, the houseguest team up with people who will fight to keep them in the house and have their back in competitions.  They will also vote to save you if you happen to be on the block. It is also common for your houseguest to turn against their own alliance members, and to get blind-sided or thrown under the bus.  Through all 15 seasons, it is a commonality that houseguests will do whatever it takes to stay in the game, and they can’t really trust anyone.

The “Big Brother” mantra is “expect the unexpected.”  You never know when the game will completely change and when the house will turn upside down.  Each season has an interesting twist which shakes up the game.  For instance, one season each houseguest began the game with a partner, and in the middle of the season each one was split up.

“Big Brother” has also split the house between two teams in the very beginning, and then changed it to the common single play. Another reoccurring surprise is Pandora’s box, where the HOH has the choice to open the box, and is faced with a decision that effects him and the rest of the houseguests.  The twist with Pandora’s box is that no one knows what it is or even if it is good or bad until the choice has been made by the HOH to accept whatever Pandora’s box has to offer.

Every season of “Big Brother” is always different, whether by a new theme, new competitions, or new twists.  There are always new houseguests, and sometimes they even bring back previous houseguests. It is a very exciting and addicting show, and it’s always fun to watch. You can watch live feeds on the internet and talk with other viewers about the show. If you are a fan of reality shows and are not watching “Big Brother”, you are missing out.