Matt Hoffman Breaks Down Big Brother 16 Cast

Hello, Big Brother superfans! It’s Matt Hoffman from Season 12…back again in part to cling tenaciously to my 15-minutes of fame, but primarily to rail into this new crop of Big Brother lab rats!

Matt Hoffman
Big Brother alum Matt Hoffman

Looking back at how my pre-show cast assessment from last season ended up alarmingly accurate in many regards, I (with Big Brother Network’s blessing) decided to have another stab at predicting the future through unwarranted judgment and opinion. Let’s get this BB16 train a-rollin’…

See the Big Brother 16 cast interview videos here that Matt Hoffman is referencing.

Brittany Martinez
Brittany MartinezGive this interview a little time. I also started off immediately not liking Brittany (I say “also” because I assume you share my same view that Brittany is as engaging as a wall of drying paint). Then she lost a lot of superfan points by saying she’s a recruit and had never seen an episode of Big Brother before. But Brittany started to turn things around when the interviewer aborted the impossible task of coaxing a personality out of her and, instead, began focusing on her strategy. This girl seems ruthless and sharp…two excellent qualities to have. I see a game barely fueled by emotions, and a lack of knowledge of Big Brother could help her to not overplay. I’m picking Brittany to make it far. I’m also very excited to hear your collective taunts to me on Twitter when she’s voted off first.

Christine Brecht
Christine BrechtChristine would be my favorite contestant this season…IF she never talked or played Big Brother. What I love about her is that, for the first time on Big Brother, we’re finally getting what I consider to be a truly genuinely, nerdy, awkward female who will not ultimately do anything pornographic post-season. What turns me off about her is that I believe that she is one of those people who thinks that she is funnier than the people around her think that she is. The reason I believe this to be true is because we can smell our own.

Donny Thompson
Donny ThompsonLet me introduce you to Donny Thompson. Settle down, ladies – he’s taken. Don’t let the “Orlando” hat fool you…he’s from North Carolina, and that’s just one of his many ruses. Donny says that he’s too old to win physical competitions, so his strategy is to “make people feel comfortable”. That should be no problem for this good ol’ boy, since there’s nothing more welcoming than a dude with more hair on his face than on his head wearing a full-on badass camouflage top that makes Season 15 Judd’s bear shirt look feminine. If he wins, Donny says he’s going to use the money to get “laser surgery” on his eyes. And, really…is there anything more awesome than Donny Thompson with laser eyes? I rest my case.

Derrick Levasseur
Derrick LevasseurDerrick is a cop. Derrick doesn’t want anyone in the house to know he’s a cop. Someone needs to tell Derrick really soon to stop talking, looking, thinking, behaving, and sounding exactly like a cop. I know a thing or two about reality television lies, and I predict that this one will blow up in his face before the first week is over. We also learn that Derrick is one of those honesty/integrity/family-man/blahblahblah types. Being that I watch reality TV primarily for its most vile deviancies, Derrick is not my cup of tea.

“Joey” Van Pelt
Joey Van PeltJoey Van Pelt (no acknowledged relation to Linus or Lucy) is Season 16’s less-interesting, less-tattooed, less-drama-inducing Lydia Tavera (Season 11). Joey says that America should cheer for her because they won’t expect her to win. Ain’t that the truth! Maybe we’d have more confidence in her if, in the previous breath, she didn’t mention how she will invariably suck a nut at every competition and try to stay safe by “being fun”. Joey also has a GREEEAT (is that how you convey sarcasm on the internet?) plan to form an all-girls alliance…which, as any Big Brother fan knows, works FLAWLESSLY nearly EEEEVERY season! Joey feels this strategy will work perfectly for her because she says she gets along best with women, so she will not get into any cat fights. Joey fails to realize that, historically speaking, there will only be one or two females at most who are mentally-stable enough to form this peaceful, rational, girl-power coalition with.

Nicole Franzel
Curse you, Big Brother, for casting two “chicks with glasses”!…thus, I now have to remember names instead of vague, superficial generalities. Here is an easy mathematical equation to describe Nicole:

Jordan (S10/13)
– Cute southern accent
+ Irritatingly thick midwestern accent
+ Aaryn (S15)
– Racism
= Nicole Franzel

Nicole FranzelThe highlight of this video, by far, is Nicole awkwardly fumbling around a way to explain to everyone how she is definitely not racist like some people may have been in the past ** wink ** wink **! Honestly, I like Nicole…she is a live-feed-viewing, t-shirt-making superfan, and she seems to just genuinely be excited about having fun and making the most out of the entire experience. I hope she does well, but she won’t.

Amber Borzotra
Amber BorzotraAhhh, what to say about Amber?…no, seriously – what to say about Amber? She’s a model/esthetician, and I would give her a half-million dollars myself if she could spell “esthetician”. Amber SAYS “I try to steer clear of drama and confrontation”, but what I HEAR Amber saying is, “I’m a loony bitch and will be flying off the handle in no time”. Mark my words on this one…she’s just got that crazy look in her eyes. Amber also wants to form a tight-knit female alliance, so maybe we’ll see her and Joey fail together, hand-in-hand, a la Thelma and Louise.

Paola Shea
Paola SheaI have to imagine that some feminist organization had a heavy hand in casting this season, as we now have the THIRD contestant who is adamant about forming an all-girls alliance and sticking together. Failure works best in threes, I’ve been told. Meet Paola…or “Pao Pao”, as she calls herself. I call her “Bye Bye”. Pao Pao reminds us multiple times that she is proud to be the first female DJ ever to play Big Brother. Wow…THERE’S a stat for Wikipedia. Pao Pao goes on to say that she will not do well in memory competitions because her “brain doesn’t work like that”. Yeah…”like that”.

Victoria Rafaeli
Victoria RafaeliVictoria is one of several recruits this season, but she is a different breed…because coincidentally, she also happens to be a huge fan of Big Brother both nationally and internationally! Based on the fact that Victoria is a superfan who got approached with no initiation on her part and was offered a dream chance to play, I have to assume that Victoria has a horseshoe wedged rather deeply up her ass. Luck like that could take her at least to jury…then she’s going to have to start playing. If she can pull off her “secret alliance” strategy, it could be fun to watch.

Zach Rance
Zach RanceI was fascinated just watching Zach talk. I can’t really even explain it or put my finger on it, but I know it was odd. I imagine that Zach is the guy who bangs a lot of chicks and is totally brazen about it, yet chicks keep banging him anyway and have nearly instant regret. In the scheme of Big Brother, he is the character love-child of Dr. Will and Dan Gheesling, but with zero strategy. I believe we’ll be seeing a lot of Zach, however, because he is my prime suspect for a showmance.

Caleb Reynolds
Caleb ReynoldsCaleb reminds me of some nightmarish hybrid between Jeff Schroeder (S10/13) and Chef Joe (S14). Maybe it’s the soul patch…I dunno. I believe that Caleb is the first military man that we’ve seen since Jerry back in Season 10. Another thing Caleb and Jerry have in common?…the inability to speak coherent thoughts at length. This is pristinely illustrated when Caleb describes to us his “bobber, hook, and sinker effect” theory that you would not be surprised to learn he came up with the night before this interview. His theory has something to do with him being a bobber so that fish don’t get mad at him…very confusing, but at least Caleb said that “the bobber plays a big role in the depth of your hook”, which sets us up for a fantastic “…that’s what she said”.

Cody Calafiore
Cody CalafioreTwo things stood out to me about Cody. 1) He has a young Ralph Macchio vibe. 2) He will not last long in Big Brother. Cody is quite boring and seems to just be going through the motions. He doesn’t appear to be enough of a gamer to even make it to jury, but the interviewer is still polite enough to ask him funny questions like what he’d do with the $500,000 and how he’d handle the jury in the Final 2. Cute.

Frankie Grande
Frankie GrandeAs soon as this video started, I wanted it to stop. Big Brother Network, however, has the same sadistic tendencies as Big Brother itself, and decided to make this the longest interview segment for me to sit through. Frankie Grande describes himself as an “actor/social-media-influencer/YouTube-personality”. That last sentence alone should be enough to explain why I can’t take any more of this. One of Frankie’s biggest worries is that people will recognize him in the house from his YouTube videos, causing him to have to change up his strategy. This is more comically delusional than maybe anything I’ve ever heard out of a contestant’s mouth pre-season. Frankie will be lucky if people recognize him AFTER being on Big Brother, let alone before. Finally, Frankie really sells the “please-hate-me-as-much-as-possible” vibe by ending his interview telling all of his adoring fans to “shine bright like a Frankie”.

Devin Shepherd
Devin ShepherdUgh. This is a tough one. I feel bad that Devin even has to be evaluated by a dickwad like me. Devin appears to be a really REALLY genuinely good dude…the kind of guy you would love to have as your buddy, but that will be drab as can be to watch on TV. Someone needs to fly a banner in the backyard that just says, “RUN, DEVIN!” to try and save this guy from devolving into whatever demonized version of himself he may end up becoming after being trapped with the 15 other nutjobs this summer. I truly do wish him the best of luck, and although I don’t think he will win, Devin is certainly the contestant that I would most like to want to see win. Also, Devin is an ex-St. Louis Cardinal which could lead to a potentially awesome reality-check if Devin gets recognized in the house as a pro athlete before Frankie gets recognized for his stupid internet videos!

Hayden Voss
Hayden VossHayden Voss describes himself in the way that you would expect any unkempt bicycle cab driver dressed in safari gear to describe themselves…as a “hustler” who “knows what it takes to get to the top”. Look, let’s just address the big pink elephant in the room here right now…seriously what the $*#@ are the odds that Big Brother would cast a Hayden Voss only a few years after casting Season 12 winner Hayden Moss?!? Never in my life did I think I’d have to use the phrase “which Hayden?”, but I feel like that will become commonplace amongst the BB fan community now. In order to clear things up for you, I’ve whipped up this handy table:

Hayden Moss Hayden Voss
Played college baseball Played college hockey
Long, flowing, silky golden locks of hair Long, unwashed, lice-infested golden locks of hair
Winner of Season 12 Loser of Season 16
Has $500,000 Works for tips to pay for ramen noodles
“The Animal” in the Brigade alliance Genetically part animal

Jocasta Odom
Jocasta OdomWow. This was an exhausting video, to say the least. Jocasta likes to talk a lot without saying much of anything. Her casting story played out like Chunk’s confession to the Fratellis in Goonies. After rambling on about her husband and her sister and her nail tech and her college roomate’s kid, Jocasta is asked what she will bring to Big Brother 16 that no one else will. This is where she really goes off the deep end talking about some “secret symbol” that she has which will give her powers of some sort that she will reveal at some point but not now. If this sounds insane, it is…and I assure you that, as confusing as that last sentence sounded, I did as good of a job of describing it as was possible. Jocasta also becomes the FOURTH female to insist on forming a rock-solid all-girls alliance. If/when this plan doesn’t work with all of these women dead-set on its success, can we please finally just collectively agree to abandon this concept forever? Finally, Jocasta tells us that a vote for her is a vote for Jesus. Not to get all theological here, but I can’t imagine that Jesus (or any supreme being, for that matter) has any vested interest in Big Brother. Although when Jocasta gets voted out first or second, I may change my tune.

Well, that’s it for me this year. Thanks again to Big Brother Network for giving me the opportunity to dissect my fellow future Big Brother alumni before they ever even step foot into the house. If you enjoyed what I wrote here, then you may be a prime candidate to follow my sarcastic, cynical brain-dumps over on Twitter @HeadOfHOFFhold…so go do that now, because a follow for me is a follow for Jesus.


Commenting Rules: Keep the conversation civil and on topic. If your comment does not add to the conversation, it will be removed. Debate intelligently. Insulting the author, Big Brother Network, or other commentators will result in comment removal and possible ban. Any comments with links or flagged words will go into moderation before approval. Anything we deem as spam will not be approved. Comments left in ALL-CAPS will be deleted regardless of content.


  1. Matt I signed up for live feeds this year after hearing you were on the show. I keep telling myself I’m going to stop but the addiction is too strong! Hope to see you in podcasts and writing here on BBN.
    Your fan always, Foofie

  2. Let’s just hope it’s no where near a repeat of last season’s embarrassing and racist filled season!

  3. Frankie Grande is Ariana Grande’s brother. She’s got 16 million Twitter followers. He has a few hundred thousand from YouTube. You say he won’t be noticed, but considering this season has another America’s vote, you know who’s going to clean up. This is going to be yet another MVP fail, like last year.

    • Don’t underestimate the YouTube’s and their fans. Plus his sister? He will be popular in America votes.

  4. In the house, I really don’t think anyone will recognize Frankie, especially if he doesn’t give out his last name. NO ONE will know. Don’t know why he’d be worried lol. And I guess you can say that he’ll be “America’s” pick for everything, but I really don’t think a lot of Ariana Grande fans are BB watchers, you know? I also assumed that he was a random recruit, but it sounds like he is an actual fan of Survivor and BB, so in a season full of recruits, I’ll give him a chance before I severely judge.

    • He has over 150 Thousand Subscribers on Youtube. That’s a reason to be worried.

      • You think Hayden might have heard of him? I think he makes YouTube videos as well.

  5. Devin sounds like a genuine guy, I also hope BB doesn’t destroy him. I think Joey looks like the most likeable female. I’m not sure about this whole female alliance, of course it won’t work. I’m interested in seeing who the first hook up will be. I’m going to guess Hayden and Victoria, they seem well suited for each other. LOL jk

  6. Ugh, I really can’t stand Paola. Everything about her makes me want to cringe. I understand that you should have a bit of an “interesting” personality to be entertaining on TV, but pff.

  7. My comments on this old article. Although interesting, Matt didn’t get it right on a few houseguests.

1 Trackback / Pingback

  1. Matt Hoffman Breaks Down Big Brother 16 Cast | NextOff

Comments are closed.