Big Brother 22: What’s Going On With This Season? [Op-Ed]

Modern Big Brother has its issues. That’s one reason why I was so excited to learn Big Brother 22 was All-Stars. I had such high hopes. And my hopes got even higher when I learned they dipped deep into the past casting pool and gave us Kaysar, Janelle, Keesha, Memphis and Dani.

I was even happy for Ian and Enzo, because in my opinion, Big Brother 12 was still an old-school season. I feel like the show started changing around Big Brother 14, and then Big Brother 15 gave us that disaster, which was followed by Big Brother 16. And that’s where modern Big Brother started to go wrong, I think.

Big Brother 16 was just a one-note season. Derrick kept all the drama to a minimum, lined up his group, and set up the targets one by one, and they all took turns taking them out. We never saw a power shift that season, really, because there weren’t sides. The house worked as a unity, with the HOH (usually by way of Derrick) deciding who was going home each week. And it went that way all season. The only time things changed were when a nominee won the veto or Derrick arbitrarily decided on a new target.

Then the following season, I’m pretty sure they showed the casting recruits Big Brother 16 in sequester. So it ended up being another season of herding out the targets one by one. BB17 wasn’t as boring, though, but it still didn’t feel like the Big Brother we fell in love with long ago. Big Brother 18 saw the return of James, who had a bit of coaching from Derrick (Derrick denied this but James even mentioned it on the Live Feeds), so he made sure to not allow any fun or drama to arise. There were a few power shifts here and there, at least, but as we saw in the end, the game had changed into something that will no longer reward aggressive gameplay, which is why Nicole won over Paul.

And then came Big Brother 19. Which is Big Brother 16 on crack. The mob mentality was out of control that season. The only difference was, there wasn’t someone in there to squash the drama. In fact, drama was encouraged by Paul. So we saw a lot of fighting, and what some people called actual bullying.

Big Brother 20 must have been a fluke because we actually had two sides of a house and constant power shifts. Of course, we all know that one of those alliances didn’t know how to handle the power shift, but at least it wasn’t just a one-note season like the past several.

Then last summer we were given my least favorite season ever. From start to finish, I can’t name one thing I liked about Big Brother 21. It was so cringe-worthy. From the tone deafness of Camp Comeback to blatant racism, I just want to forget that whole season.

So after all those dud seasons, I was so thrilled to be given All-Stars this summer. Especially after thinking we might never see Big Brother this year. But here we are, heading into Week 5, and I’m no happier about this season than I have been the past several. But why is that?

Is it because Big Brother 16 changed the course of the game? Will we only ever see large alliances running the house and deciding who goes home every week? Will we never see power shifts again? Is this it? What confuses me the most is that this cast was pretty evenly split as far as old school vs. new school goes. But what happened with Dani and Memphis? Was there actually a legit pre-game alliance formed?

If you don’t watch the Live Feeds and don’t pay attention to social media, then you might not know that the big rumor was that Derrick, and possibly Dan, put their runners up Cody and Memphis together, along with Nicole and Dani. Derrick has lightly denied this, and Dan has never addressed it, but something is definitely going on here. If you remember back to the first few days of this season, Cody and Memphis just started talking about what they were going to do this season as if they were already in an alliance. Then suddenly, they have their team, including Nicole and Dani, who also came into the game as a solid alliance.

Some people expect alliances to be formed already when it comes to All Stars seasons. It happened in BB7 and it happens in Survivor. And I get that, but Big Brother 8 winner EvelDick tweeted to Big Brother Canada 2 winner Jon Pardy why this time is different.

So I don’t know if Derrick and Dan really formed the alliance, but someone did. And it has made for a completely inorganic and boring season so far. Every single week, someone from that alliance, or a sub-alliance, has won HOH.  And we’ve lost three of the old-school players out of four evictions. That means we are most likely not going to see a power shift this season.

My frustration goes beyond the lack of power shifts. I cannot stand the mob mentality and how it plays out. The persons who end up the mob’s target are always shunned and shut out to the point that sometimes they don’t even campaign because they know it won’t matter. This past week is a great example of that. No one but Ian would even talk to Kaysar. He even said a good way to clear a room out is have him walk in. And that’s how it always is. The “dead man walking,” so to speak, can’t even enjoy their final days in the house because of how they’re treated.

And it’s already starting again this week. Christmas, as the new HOH, has her sights on Da’Vonne and Bayleigh. Tyler even told her Thursday night to nominate them, then go to her room and lock the door so Bayleigh can’t “go on a rampage” and come talk to her. What kind of game is it now that the HOH can’t even deal with the fallout of their own nominations?

I just want old-school Big Brother back. I know the game has “evolved” as far as twists go, but why can’t get get back to that in-your-face drama, instead of the gossiping and behind-your-back gaslighting? I miss Janelle yelling “give me that key b___” and moments like Keesha’s birthday. I miss the Nerd Herd and the Sovereign Six taking turns being in power. I miss blindsides like Big Brother 8 Dustin going home in complete shock. Big Brother 20 gave us a little taste of the old-school way, but here we are being let down once again, and in an All-Stars season. I’m just so bummed about it.

What are your thoughts on Big Brother 22? Are you enjoying it? Every season some fans are happy, some fans aren’t. So what do you think, am I being too hard on the season?




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