After a summer of lockdown, one of the biggest and baddest Reality shows is back (a little later than usual), and this time, 16 All-Star houseguests entered the house live on premiere night, prompting the beginning of a monster season.
As a last minute decision for Reality Review, this blog will move away from the typical Australian television content to review the current season of Big Brother U.S. This show and format is a personal favourite of mine, and given the season began with a live premiere and cast reveal, which is made up of 16 All-Star houseguests, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to write about this season!
So to the Australian readers – welcome! Hopefully I cover enough in the recaps to keep you up to date. To our new American faces, I hope to break down every week inside the Big Brother house right up until the finale, giving you insight into what happened and what I thought about each and every move by the houseguests. Let’s get this ride started!
THE ALL-STAR CAST
NICOLE FRANZEL Season 16: 7th Season 18: Winner Occupation: Social Media Influencer Age: 28 Nicole has had a lot of heat on her coming into this season, with rumours swirling she was responsible or partially responsible for getting two other potential All-Star houseguests kicked off the show before the season began. But she walks in as the only female winner on the cast, an achievement she deserved and could be taken out again. Nicole's biggest downfall is that she's such a big target for her former two turns, and she has the potential to be seen as fake because everyone knows how good her social game is. Nicole is probably coming in the strongest she's ever been mentally, but it might just cost her.
DANIELE BRIONES Big Brother 8: Runner-Up Big Brother 13: 8th Occupation: Stay-at-home Mom Age: 33 When Daniele first played, she wasn't even old enough to drink. Now, after meeting her husband during her second season and since having a daughter, Daniele never thought she'd get the chance to play for a third time. But Daniele is just that good, nobody's surprised she's an All-Star pick. I absolutely love Daniele, she's my favourite female player of the whole show - so am both excited and ecstatic she has returned. She was great in all facets of the game back when she played both times prior, but now that she's a little older, the test will be to see if Daniele has still got it. And I think she has, so I'll be rooting for her, go Dani!
DA'VONNE ROGERS Big Brother 17: 16th Big Brother 18: 11th Occupation: Acting Coach Age: 32 I am so excited for Da'Vonne! And a lot of fans are going to be sleeping on her if they base their assessment on her previous BB instalments, but she's since competed on two seasons of MTV's The Challenge, and she can hold her own physically. I would love to see Da'Vonne actually pull out a competition win on the show this time, something to solidify her strong social game. What hurts Da' is her social game, as well. Because she's either seen as a threat or opened her mouth up too many times for people to trust her. If she can back up her game in the physical area, and reign in the chatter - Da'Vonne's exceptional analytical skills might make her a real contender this season.
CHRISTMAS ABBOTT Big Brother 19: 3rd Occupation: Fitness Entrepreneur Age: 38 Christmas was actually one of my favourites pre-BB19, and then still continued to be during and after. But something never sat right to solidify her as a great player. As a real physical beast, Christmas was extremely threatening during her season. But a broken foot knocked her out of several competitions all season long, forcing her to play a superb social game. This time, Christmas is healthy and just as strong physically as before. Combining what we know about her mental game from her first season, and what we expect from her physical game this time - this could be a breakout season for Christmas. But I'll hold my breath for now.
TYLER CRISPEN Big Brother 20: Runner-Up Occupation: Jewelry Company Executive Age: 25 Known for his exceptional social and strategic game, some empty promises sealed Tyler's fate when the jury decided against him winning the season. Tyler is great in many areas of the game, but up against All-Stars, where will he stack up? I don't know if we can trust Tyler to be as great a force as last time, he may wanna even dial it down himself to ensure he isn't perceived a threat. So I fear for Tyler's possible run to the end again, I don't think it could be as locked in as it could be for some others. If Tyler gets in early with the right group of people and a tight two or three person alliance, maybe he can push himself one step further in placement, and cash.
IAN TERRY Big Brother 14: Winner Occupation: Management Consultant Age: 29 Ian was just a kid the first time he played, but the kid outsmarted the master in legendary player Dan Gheesling by defeating him 6-1 in the jury vote. Ian's just as smart, and just as capable of playing the exact same game, flying under the radar, and winning some clutch competitions to make it to the end be a two-time winner. He's a really great player (not as good as Dan, I think however). Coming as the only male winner, and only houseguest to never be evicted, it might be easy for some to discount him early and target him for being a threatening player down the road. But I do firmly think if anyone can wiggle out of a target it's Ian, and I'm excited to see what he makes of a second time in the house.
KEVIN CAMPBELL Big Brother 11: 3rd Occupation: Ad Agency Executive Age: 40 Many might be scratching their heads on who Kevin Campbell is, but the guy was on the verge of winning the entire damn season if he answered one more question right in BB11. A real bummer, because I think Kevin's a pretty impressive player that no one really talks about when we discuss robbed final jurors. He's a great quiet pick for the cast, someone nobody will expect to play too hard early. I think Kevin will make nice with everyone at the beginning, solidifying alliances and deals while he can. But then Kevin's gonna bring it and bring it hard, these houseguests are just waiting for it. I see a bright future for Kevin, and it could spell the ultimate All-Stars winner.
ENZO PALUMBO Big Brother 12: 3rd Occupation: Insurance Adjuster Age: 42 A pleasant addition to the All-Stars cast, I think Enzo's got a real good shot this season. He's big on alliances, running with one of the best and biggest the game has ever seen back the first time he played. But he just couldn't keep up physically and win any comps. I don't know if that's gonna change too much for Enzo this time, he might have a similar run as BB12. Enzo works well socially and forms the necessary bonds he needs to make to advance him those few steps forward (comp wins unnecessary). I think Enzo's got a great social game and can probably keep up strategically; but I'm not so sure if he'll be able to take out the win. Time will tell.
JANELLE DESANTO Big Brother 6: 3rd Big Brother 7: 3rd Big Brother 14: 12th Occupation: Real Estate Agent Age: 40 Janelle is one of the fiercest and greatest competitors the game has ever seen physically. But don't discount her social or strategic game either, Janelle's got some great brains that saw her make it just one spot short from being a finalist twice. On her fourth time, Janelle is FINALLY seeking that win and it would be amazing if she could claim it. Her competition statistics are fantastic, but all these years later, Janelle might not quite be the beast everyone expects her to be. She plays hard, but her reputation might precede her and the other houseguests might not even give her a chance. I hope Janelle goes far and wins it, just for the story arc of it. But the odds are surely against her.
BAYLEIGH DAYTON Big Brother 20: 11th Occupation: Model Age: 27 I love and hate Bayleigh, it fluctuates. I think she's a strong character, and her intelligence should be a lot more highly regarded than it is. But sometimes she loses her cool, and it's not all too fun to watch for me. She plays a lot more emotionally than some others. When Bayleigh argues, she argues loud and it's hard to come back from it. I imagine this is something she hopes to keep in check. Otherwise, Bayleigh is absolutely capable of sticking in with a majority alliance, winning some comps and just being a strong player this season overall. I do think she could go all the way to the end, but it's not as likely to me as it is for others.
NICOLE ANTHONY Big Brother 20: 3rd Occupation: Podcast Host Age: 25 Fresh off the last season, Nicole has barely had a moment to step away from the BB limelight and savour time from her first season to her second. Nicole plays with a lot of heart and kindness, a refreshing change to some of the more ruthless players we've got back this season. But that's where her game really stands out. She grinds when she has to, but that isn't often because she's usually well connected to stay off the block. Amongst this cast, I don't know if Nicole sits quite well among everyone else. She could be targeted early for being such a great social player and not fitting in with the group. It's hard to say, but I wish Nicole luck and would love to see a big finish from her this season if that's how the season is going to pan out.
KEESHA SMITH Big Brother 10: 4th Occupation: Waitress Age: 42 ONE OF THE GREATEST CHARACTERS TO COME OUT OF THIS SHOW IS BACK! Fans have been calling for a Keesha return for YEARS, and finally, she has returned. I think after so long out of the show, Keesha's gonna take a back seat for a good while. But it might hurt her if she's too quiet, could be a perfect nomination excuse. Nevertheless, Keesha will likely soon find her footing and make some strong bonds, especially with her fellow old schooler houseguests. If she were to go home early, fans will riot. So I hope the others know what they're doing if they choose to go down that path.
KAYSAR RIDHA Big Brother 6: 10th Big Brother 7: 10th Occupation: Biotech Executive Age: 39 It's been 14 years since we last saw Kaysar. At 25, he played the first All-Stars edition of Big Brother, but he's back again, for another shot - hopefully making the jury stage this time. Despite playing twice, and even coming back after being evicted the first time; Kaysar has only ever gone home pre-jury. That's a shocking statistic when you think about how good Kaysar is socially and how he holds up well physically. Nevertheless, there's something to achieve for Kaysar this time and it would be great for him to not only make the jurty stage but completely bypass it and win the whole thing. It'll be fun to see how Kaysar navigates his third season, but my fingers are crossed for a successful run.
CODY CALAFIORE Big Brother 16: Runner-Up Occupation: Soccer Coach Age: 29 Without his right hand man Derrick, Cody's got a lot to prove this season. One half of a formidable alliance, Cody was strong in several aspects of the game - so much so he catapulted into the final two. But it was his last game decision that cost him the win, voting out Victoria over ally and strategic mastermind Derrick. What hurts me for Cody is that he doesn't seem to regret the move. YOU LOST THE GAME! Nobody would have hated Cody for voting him out, although he did provide us with such a great winner in Derrick. If Cody wants to win it this time, he's going to have to play smarter and stronger. The good news? I think he's entirely capable of doing so, and a Cody win wouldn't be all too shocking this season.
MEMPHIS GARRETT Big Brother 10: Runner-Up Occupation: Restaurateur Age: 37 Another losing half of one of the greatest duos of the game, Memphis lost his season 7-0 to BB legend Dan Gheesling, this time, he's gonna want to flip those jury votes in his favour. I think Memphis has learned a lot from his first time, and will come into this season knowing how to play the game and ready to make it really count. He's probably got a pretty good shot at making it far, although I'm not sure whether comps will be his forte - they weren't so much the first time. But I have faith Memphis will one to watch outside of Dan's shadow, and will be a surprising player that makes a mark on the season. I'm excited to see how he plays, I'm in his corner this season.
DAVID ALEXANDER Big Brother 21: 16th Occupation: Senior Sales Representative Age: 30 The guy didn't even get evicted by a vote, he was out night one due to a shitty twist. But thanks to the season's twist of Camp Comeback, we got to see David remain in the house for a little longer, where his gameplay had a small chance to shine. He's extremely analytical, reading social situations well and figuring out exactly how the houseguests are playing. Hopefully this time, without the aura of 'evicted houseguest' surrounding him, David will really pull the guns out and show everyone that a first boot can be a fluke and could end up taking it all. I'm excited to see David succeed this season, he deserves to get a fair go.
Big Brother: All-Stars 2.0, 16 incredible returnees and a season like no other. I’m so excited to see how every week pans out and give my thoughts on the play by play for each houseguest. This is going to be a whole lot of fun!
Stay tuned for more Big Brother U.S content, we’ll see you soon for the Week 1 Review!
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