Big Brother Uncut Season One: A Nostalgia Trip For The Oldies!

Big Brother Is Watching You!

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If you’re old enough to remember watching the very first British season of Big Brother, shown in 2000, then… you’re almost certainly old enough to have sworn off ever watching it again, at least a time or two! Seriously, this season of the original and best ‘reality’ show pretty much proves the old adage that it’s never as good as the first time. (Is that an adage or just an old Sade song? I can’t remember my granny ever saying it, I will concede.) Or maybe it's just the Big Brother contestants that aren't as good as the first lot. I don't know about the original Dutch version, but the first Brit crop of BB candidates had a charm, a sincerity and authenticity that seems to be progressively degraded as the franchise wears out its welcome.

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The same first season is available on DVD from Warner Vision International, coming in at 102 minutes with ‘explicit’ unaired scenes promised as a lure to the potential buyer. The greatness of Season One of Big Brother consists, even though it has been noted before, in this: none of the characters realised that they were going to be, like, really, really, really famous (however temporarily). Why does that make the show so much better than subsequent seasons? Well, it may well be simply because all the fame worshippers and adulation seekers hadn’t yet swarmed it and taken over all available houseguest positions. All the house inhabitants in this season – even the less attractive or endearing ones – still come across as wholly human and not altogether shallow and vapid.

What are the highlights of the show? Certainly the most memorable point for almost everyone who watched the season as it played out has to be the round-table conference and confrontation between ‘Nasty’ Nick, Craig and the rest of the crew. Painfully tense, uncomfortably truthful, this covers the confrontation between Bateman and the rest of the group after they have sussed that he was playing his own game and attempting to manipulate the events and people of the show in order to win the prize money. It’s more tense than any scripted highly directed thriller you’ve ever seen. Really! Folks across the nation hid their eyes and hid behind their sofas at the excruciating dramatic tension!

Other joys include Darren and the chickens (he’s called Darren. He takes care of the chickens. He talks to the chickens. Yep, that’s about it.) You might also enjoy Anna the guitar playing lesbian nun. Oh yeah, ex-nun. She was great! (You do tend to wonder what the hell these people are doing now, and indeed to hope that they are enjoying and recovering in quiet anonymity. Not something current and recent Big Brother star(lets) tend to do much of.

Are you looking for a nostalgic trip down ‘memory lane’ – where the hell is that street anyway – and a way to remember a simpler, more innocent time, with fewer reality star photoshoots in Hello magazine? Maybe you need to buy the DVD of the first season of Big Brother!

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