It’s that time of year again — to lament the downfall and the displeasure in how the most recent incarnation of CBS’ Big Brother “reality” television show is, once again, unfolding before us — and the thing that bites me today is the sort of person CBS lures onto the show to live an exposed life 24/7 for 90 days.
Elissa Reilly Slater was evicted from the Big Brother 15 house last night, effectively ending her chance to win half a million dollars, but she kept her morality and dignity intact and that, to me, is more precious than Big Brother blood money, and as far as I’m concerned the real, true, and only winner of BB15 is Elissa even though the show runs for another two weeks.
From the start of the show, Elissa was marked. Her horrible sister Rachel was a previous winner, and professional whiner, and there are few Rachel Reilly fans in the Big Brother world. Elissa was tagged by the other houseguests as being favored by the producers — and she was, just because of her shared bloodline with a previous winner — and it didn’t help that Elissa, a doppelgänger of her sister, denied being Rachel’s sister when asked. A lie from the clean start can never really take you to the dirty end in victory.
That said, Elissa, a premier athlete of a Yoga instructor, bided her time and played the game as well as she could all alone. She tried to make alliances. She wanted to team up. Nobody would have her. Nobody listened to her insight or wisdom. She was written off as a sibling airhead by everyone in the house — even her supposed “friend” Helen — who dictated to Elissa without ever hearing her.
I am old enough to remember the debut of “reality” television when it was actually interesting and meant something. Season one of “The Real World” on MTV and “Big Brother” on CBS are hallmarks. Even though those shows were “live edited” there was a certain authenticity about the series that bled through the television screen indicating human life. Why is it today that so many “reality” shows come across scripted and fake and inauthentic? Could it be because those shows are now brewed to be, from first blush, scripted, fake and inauthentic? True reality is too hard, too tough to touch. Fake reality is much easier to control and sell to the masses. Don’t think. Just believe.
I have been a paid live feed watcher of the CBS television show Big Brother since the first season. Every year, the show gets less interesting with horribly boring and psychotic contestants. Every year I keep coming back to the show hoping for a return to season one greatness, but it has yet to happen. This year, Season 14, is no different — and in an effort to save the show in the shards of ABC’s The Glass House defections of former Big Brother producers — Big Brother executive producer Allison Grodner panicked and created a silly “Coach’s Twist” that brought back former players to coach new players, only to have the coaches actually become players in the game last week so they could go against their former team members for a $500,000.00 grand prize.
The saddest, and most depressing part of Big Brother 14, happened last night with the removal of perennial Big Brother America’s Favorite Janelle — she’s on the right in the image below — from the game.
I am a big fan of the Big Brother reality show. ABC-TV, using castoff Big Brother producers, aired their copycat show last night called — “The Glass House” — and it is an awful and pale program in comparison with the original inspiration.
One of my Summer rituals is watching Big Brother online and this year’s iteration started last night. I enjoy studying the live interaction of the houseguests. This year, Big Brother 13, is unique because the Real SuperPass is finally now viewable on iOS devices — for an extra $10.00USD fee, of course — but that extra money to watch the feeds on your iPhone and iPad is worth every cent. One of the twists this year is the return of “power couples” including Brendan and Rachel, Jeff and Jordan and Evel Dick and his Daughter Danielle.
A troublesome bill has recently passed through the Senate and it could mean the end of legal home farming the way I love and remember it. Gone could be the herbs growing on window sills and the police may be breaking down garage doors to find small plots of tomatoes growing. How could such a thing come to be?