LUKE MARSDEN: new series of Big Brother gets my seal of approval

​“If I win, I’m going to buy a vagina.” Welcome to Big Brother 2023!
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​After five long years away, the juggernaut of reality TV shows has kicked off on its new home of ITV2 (and streaming service ITVX) but has it lost its magic?

In short, no: and, if anything, the revival is not only proving to be a ratings hit for ITV but also that it firmly has a place in 2023 Britain.

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Like many true Big Brother fans, I was nervous about ITV getting its hands on the format. I couldn’t stomach the thought of its turning the grandfather of reality TV into a Love Island photocopy.

The Big Brother housematesThe Big Brother housemates
The Big Brother housemates

These fears have not been realised. Instead not only has ITV expertly cast the show but it hasn’t messed with the format. Unlike the C5 era which tried to compete with Love Island in the end, ITV is making it clear that BB is back with its own big bang.

Social media’s review of the not-live launch night was indeed scathing, but in the end the pre-recorded speeded up version allowed us to see more of the house action straight away and surely that’s a good thing? I’d rather see them argue over a Pot Noddle than watch 20 minutes of housemates trying to walk up some steps.

The show has already been slammed for being “too woke,” but this is 2023 and cast your mind back two decades or so. Big Brother was and is the original diversity parade producing its first ever gay and transgender winners years before anyone else.

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The brief was to see a cross-section of Britain in 2023 and after I saw a devout Muslim, a transgender person, a butcher, a call centre worker and a woman on a mobility scooter, I’d say brief met!

I’m optimistic that the revived format will work and as long as the network doesn’t tamper and tweak if ratings begin to drop then we finally have the best reality TV show on the box back.

I’m also thankful that nobody from Wigan ended up going in, that would’ve been too much for this ex-housemate.