Big Brother Needs to Make Changes To Keep Viewers

Big Brother Needs to Make Changes To Keep Viewers

Chris Chalker, Student Life Editor

Over the years, we have seen the game of Big Brother change constantly with new twists and challenges added in each year to keep us on our toes, but something that has bothered me these last two years especially and some years prior, is the bitterness of the jury that selects the winner of the game. This bitterness between the jurors and the finalists has cost some people $500,000, a lot of hard work, effort, and time to be wasted and it has started to blur the lines between voting rationally and voting emotionally.


The job of the jury in Big Brother is to have evicted houseguests select the winner of the game. The jury originally consisted of everyone, but was later cut down to just the 9th to 3rd placing evicted houseguests and in later seasons, increased to the 11th through 3rd placing houseguests. The jury is supposed to look at the two finalists and vote for who played the best game using the different aspects of the game like a houseguests social game, competition wins, etc. This mindset has caused 4 should-be winners to lose the game, 2 of them are the same person, season 18 and 19 runner-up,  Paul Abrahamian.


Let’s run through all of these bitter juries and the victims of them.


Danielle Reyes- Season 3


Danielle was known for her gloating during diary room sessions (in the diary room, players can speak their minds freely without anyone inside the house knowing what is said in there). Unfortunately for Danielle, her housemates got sick of her diary room antics and her constant bragging and belittling of them (back in this time, jurors were allowed to watch the season rather than be sequestered in the jury house). These diary room sessions ultimately cost Danielle the win in a 9-1 vote to Lisa Donahue. Reyes returned to the game for Big Brother All-Stars, but that doesn’t change the fact that a game mechanic cost her the win she deserved in her original season.


Dan Gheesling- Season 14


Dan was originally in season 10 of Big Brother, which he won, being the only ever houseguest to play a perfect game (never having a single eviction vote cast against him and earned every single jury vote) (he is also the only American winner to accomplish this). Dan returned for season 14 as a coach, where he was the coach of Jodi Rollins, Kara Monaco, and Danielle Murphree. After Jodi was evicted on night one and Kara in week 1, Dan found himself left with 1 player left and if Danielle went home, Dan did too. Dan coached Danielle on what to do in the meantime while he secured her spot in the coming weeks. Eventually, the coaches were offered the chance to enter the game, which Dan, along with two of the three other coaches, accepted. Dan became part of a few alliances, notably the Quack Pack, an alliance of him, Danielle, Shane Meaney, Ian Terry, and Britney Haynes. Dan didn’t win much competition wise but he did a lot of strategic maneuvering and got himself out of some sticky situations. Most notable here is when his rival Frank Eudy targeted him for eviction and Dan failed to win the veto, which floater Jenn Arroyo won, while Dan was punished with 24 hours solitary confinement. While in solitary, Dan came up with a strategy to advance his game and shift the target off of him. He did this by hosting his “big brother funeral,” where he made comments of respect to everyone except Danielle, whom he told the whole house publicly was dead to him. Dan persuaded Frank and Jenn to form an alliance with him and Danielle and convinced Jenn to use the veto on him and backdoor Brittany. This plan actually worked. Dan eventually made it to final 2 but his backstabbing and ruthless game play cost him the win to Ian Terry, who played a much more clean game. While I will argue that both men deserved to win, it’s hard for me to say either way who should’ve won here, but many believe Dan should have. Dan only got the vote of Danielle in the end, losing to Ian heavily. Dan made several strategical moves and was responsible for evicting nearly every houseguest in the jury to the jury. 


Paul Abrahamian- Season 18


If there was one person I couldn’t stand from the beginning, in a season of terrible cast members, with very few exceptions (Victor, James, Paul) it was Paul, hands down. I honestly believed that Paul would be one of the first people gone in his season, but after his allies Jozea Flores and Victor Arroyo (no relation to Jenn from season 14) were taken out in the first two weeks, Paul better aligned himself with several houseguests, made numerous alliances and stuck with Victor when he battled back into the house. You had to feel for him. He made big moves when he could, aligned himself better than his friends did and battled for that prize. Paul won competitions when he needed to or he was the one out the door (6 total: 3 head of households and 3 power of vetoes), was nominated 6 times and lost it all to returning player Nicole Franzel, who as many have said, floated her way to the end of the game, had competitions thrown to her and never fought anywhere near as hard as Paul did. This loss is partially on Paul as he choose to infamously evict James Huling, a much easier win over Nicole. Paul lost 5-4 to Nicole because of a few reasons. Even though they let Paul return for another chance, it was messed up again by another bitter jury, who would’ve thought?


Paul Abrahamian- Season 19


If there was one person I loved from the beginning in a season of terrible houseguests, with a few exceptions (Cameron, Kevin, Christmas, Paul), it was Paul. From day 1, when Paul walked in, he knew he was a target. His own alliance member turned on him and tried to nominate him but failed after America gave him the Pendant of Protection. That’s when Paul flipped the script and turned the house on Jessica Graf and Cody Nickson. Paul controlled the game for pretty much every week, even when he wasn’t in power. He created several blindsides: Jillian Parker, Ramses Soto, Jason Dent, Alex Ow, and so on. Paul actually broke the record for male competition wins in a single season with 9. 9 competitions, those being 4 head of households (counting the first part of the last HOH) and 5 power of vetoes. Every single time he was HOH, he won POV too. He held all the power those 3 times. He was in an impossible situation to overcome: three duos at the final 8. He convinced Jason and Alex to go to war with Matt Clines and Raven Walton and vice versa while he sat back and grabbed the popcorn. He also made sure he was each duo’s number 3. Paul orchestrated the entire season from day 1 essentially. From every eviction, to every vote, to every competition, no one said a word about anything or even breathed unless Paul told them to. He had people throw competitions so he didn’t get blood on his hands and fought his way to the end (again) but still came up short when he and Josh faced the jury. Not only was the jury extremely annoying and bitter but they voted for Josh to win the game when he clearly did so much less than Paul and even his arguments for why he should win were repetitive. Paul again, lost by a 5-4 vote to Josh. Paul lost because he wasn’t afraid to play the game and lie and stab people in the back. This isn’t a game of sunshine and rainbows and kittens and puppies. This is Big Brother and the job of a juror is to vote with their game mind, not their personal one. People will make moves to win the game. You can’t be shocked or bitter because someone lied to you or tricked you or stabbed you in the back. That’s simply how this game is played.

My proposal for how to keep the jury and make it work is to remove the houseguest jury altogether and replace it with a veteran player jury. Put in people we all know, some players who won, others who should have or came close and let them determine. It works better than letting these houseguests rob people who deserve it of the title.