Big Brother Begins Again

Big Brother 08 begins this week on Channel Ten across Australia.

Will I be watching?

Well, to quote the overused advertising campaign …

I DON’T THINK SO.

I’ve only ever seen a few minutes of the programme across all the years it’s been running. I believe that the premise of the show is monumentally immoral and I refuse to be part of such awful television.

I don’t just mean immoral from the voyeuristic nature of the show but more the way that the participants, and for that case the audience, is manipulated by the producers for the simple aim of making money for shareholders. It’s the modern day equivalent of throwing Christians to the lions for the entertainment of the masses.

It’s not good television, it’s not clever television. Big Brother doesn’t strive to show humans at their best but at their worst. It’s nasty television.

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About the author

Rodney Olsen

Rodney is a husband, father, cyclist and blogger from Perth Western Australia.

He previously worked in radio for about 25 years but these days he spends his time at Compassion Australia, working towards releasing children from poverty in Jesus’ name.

The views he expresses here are his own.

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28 Comments

  • Yes. It is nasty television. And the participants are manipulated. But they do so willingly because the pay off is fame and that’s a valuable commodity in this fame economy.

    You are spot on with your “Christians to the lions” analogy. For me it is much more like the entertainment put on by the Romans in the Colleseum than “Gladiator” will ever be. Give them bread and circuses they said. And that indeed is what we have in Big Brother.

  • I agree with you Rodney!!!! I just simply can not stand this show!! Don;t know why people still watching it!!!!….

  • I’ve always thought it was voyeurism and certainly doesn’t interest me either. I’ve never watched it, and in fact, rarely watch any ‘reality’ TV shows. Why is it that others like to watch people suffer or make fools of themselves?

  • I must admit, i did watch it a little last year, but this year the hosts are reason enough not to watch. And they – more specifically, Kyle – are the reason I don’t listen to 2dayFM 🙂

  • We wont be watching either. Didn’t the producers get into deep water last season over sexualisation issues? So this year they appear to be trying to use racism, religion, bigotry and just plain bad taste to peddle their rubbish.

    The theme song is catchy though… 🙂

  • We ended up watching some of the second half of last season after our son’s school allowed his class to use the theme for an assembly (what’s the go with that????). Then all we got was “I’m the only one in my class not allowed to watch Big Brother”. I’d never seen it before that but DH and I decided it was only fair to watch a few episodes before we made a final ruling on whether he could watch it or not (he’s 10 now – was 9 then). We ended up allowing the kids to watch the Friday night games episode which wasn’t too bad most of the time (other than getting contestants to eat horrible things – ewwwww!!!!!).

  • Thanks for your comments, Cellobella.

    You’re right, the participants willingly take part for their chance at fame and fortune but I fear that the producers already know that the show won’t bring them lasting satisfaction.

  • Kathie, I really do understand that many people enjoy seeing others make fools of themselves. There is something strangely magnetic about seeing others fail yet surely part of being human is being able to control the darker side of our natures.

    I too find it difficult to watch any kind of ‘reality’ television. It’s not reality at all. It’s manipulated and manufactured.

  • Paula, I agree. I wouldn’t want to watch the new hosts either.

    I used to like Gretel before she started hosting BB. I thought she was clever and funny but all that changed when she took on the host role for BB.

  • Barabara, it seems to be a worldwide phenomena with each country having their own version. Count yourself fortunate if you’ve not encountered it. 🙂

  • Peter, they seem to try pushing the boundaries in order to create controversy. There have been a few complaints against the programme that have been upheld. One of the most famous incidents was a couple of years ago when a woman in the house was sexually assaulted. They passed it off as just a bit of fun.

  • Lightening, I’m amazed that any teacher of 9 year olds would allow Big Brother into the classroom. I’d be demanding an explanation as to why children of that age are being encouraged to watch something with the kind of themes BB carries.

  • Couldn’t agree more! You know what I’d love to watch – a show which brought together people from different belief systems, ideologies, political backgrounds etc. (normal ordinary people, not celebrities, pollies etc.) and have them discussing why they believe what they do, what they struggle with etc. Big Brother without the sex and idiotic manipulation, with lots of coffee, biscuits and delectable conversations.

  • Right on, Rodney! I understand that American television is also plagued with such disgusting tripe. I don’t know it firsthand, because I threw out my television 15 years ago. Guess what the kids do? READ BOOKS! Muahahahahhahaha!

  • Hear Hear!! We also don’t watch it and refuse our kids to do so too, a great opportunity though to tell them how wrong and stupid those shows are and that it is against our morals and values.
    Same for “wife swop” and all the yikky reality shows out there, we refuse to watch them. The closest I come to reality show is the Bondi rescue show.

  • Books hey, Mrs M? Who would have thought? 🙂

    There’s some great stuff on TV but there is an awful lot of stuff that does nothing to move us forward as people or as a society. Well done on the stand you’ve taken.

  • Good point, Java. Instead of just telling our kids that we don’t watch certain shows, there’s a great opportunity to reinforce higher values by explaining why we don’t watch them.