Ian’s Corner — The Close Call Club

by Ian Terry



Throughout Big Brother history, there’s never been a more intriguing phenomena to me than the fact that players in grave danger at the game’s earliest stages seem to always go deep in the game. Though it’s likely no coincidence since “playing from behind” is one of the most viable strategies for playing Big Brother, I feel like it might be a great idea to rehash some of the biggest Week 1 targets that ended up making a lasting impression on the game.

Nicole, Big Brother 2

In the earliest days of Big Brother‘s first truly strategic season, there was no Houseguest more maligned than one Nicole Nilson-Schaffrich. With Mike Boogie as the show’s first ever Head of Household, he felt that he was left with a pretty obvious decision as to whom he should try to get evicted from the house. Mike quickly nominated Nicole against the highly popular Sheryl, and Nicole’s fate seemed all but sealed. After a little bit of time passed, Nicole put in a lot of work to get votes, and things seemed to change. By the time the week was through, Nicole had successfully earned 5 of the 8 votes she needed to stay in the game, leaving Mike Boogie and even Dr. Will shocked. It was at that point that an age-old adage in Big Brother started to take shape: “The pawn ALWAYS goes home!”

Nicole eventually went on to make it to the final 2 of her season. Though she couldn’t close the deal against Dr. Will, she still banked a cool $50,000 for her troubles and showed future players that even those despised from the start have a shot to do well in the game.

Marcellas, Big Brother 3

Big Brother‘s third season started off with a bang when new player Marcellas Reynolds decided to head to bed early on the first night. Almost as soon as his head hit the pillow, several contestants began conspiring to get him out, seeing him as a wet blanket. In the next few days, things became worse for Marcellas, as he seemed to be an outsider in the house. HoH Lisa put him on the chopping block in the following days against the house’s mother, Lori, and seemed to face near-certain eviction. Enter the Power of Veto. Marcellas experienced a stroke of luck when one of his few allies, Gerry, got a hold of the first Power of Veto ever offered, and removed him from the block.

Marcellas went on to place 5th and was only ended by a boneheaded decision late in the game. However, Marcellas was seen as such a huge character that he hosted House Calls: the Big Brother Talk Show for several years and played in the All-Stars season of Big Brother.

Rachel and Brendon, Big Brother 12

Early in Big Brother‘s 12th season, newly-formed showmance Rachel and Brendon found themselves on the block against each other with little possibility that they’d remain together for more than a week. The main target of the two, Brendon, managed to win the Power of Veto and pulled himself down from the block, leaving the door open for a new target to emerge. Matt Hoffman suggested that HoH Hayden backdoor contestant Annie. Rachel managed to play it cool for awhile, but Annie had a meltdown upon hearing of her suggested backdoor. Annie was nominated and eventually got booted from the House by a unanimous vote.

Rachel and Brendon did not go on to win Big Brother 12, or even do particularly well that season at all. However, both were invited back for Big Brother 13, where Rachel won the game and the show’s 500,000 prize. They also competed on The Amazing Race twice, and came in 3rd place both times. The thing most shocking to me about this though is that it’s hard to believe that we were one competition result away from the Brenchel Empire never existing!

Ian,  Big Brother 14

If you’re reading this, you know the story. I needed to snag either the Coach’s Exemption or the Veto to avoid being BB14‘s second boot and first week evictee. Talking about that week takes me to a dark, dark place, so I’d rather not go into much more detail! I managed to get the Coach’s Exemption from Mike Boogie, quickly turned things around, and went on to win the $500,000 prize.

So, after taking a look back at all of these prolific players that came that close to seeing an early exit, one has to wonder: Will any of Big Brother 16‘s players go from lock-boot to All-Star overnight? With one of my top picks, Donnie, currently being a prime target, there’s a chance that he’s really destined for greatness and could go far in the game!


Links within this article: Ian’s Corner — Who Has What It Takes?

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Bob Flynne July 8, 2014 at 5:55 am

This is really insightful and interesting! Thanks for the post, Ian. Some more interesting pieces of BB trivia that have recently come to my attention:
1. No female contestant has ever beaten a guy in the final two.
2. No contestant who walked into the big brother house first in a season has ever won that particular season.
3. Only one contestant has ever won BB 7-0: Dan Gheesling. And Dan is also one of very few people who has never ever had an eviction vote casted against him. That alone speaks volumes for his gameplay :O
4. Ian Terry is awesome.


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