Big Brother 21 Premiere Recap: Camp Is In Session!

You know that Summer has officially started when it’s time for some Big Brother! Everybody’s favorite cheese-fest returned for its 21st season on Tuesday night, introducing us to 16 all-new contestants who will be competing over the next three months in front of the 80+ cameras in the Big Brother house. There is bound to be lots of backstabbing, bro and show-mances galore, and more slop than you can shake a stick at, as these brave souls vie for the half-million dollar prize.

I too will be here all Summer covering the show for Reality Tea, and giving this awesome Reality TV-loving community a place to chat and comment on all of the happenings inside the Big Brother House. Be sure to share your thoughts in the comment section below!

I’ll try to avoid spoilers above the warning label, but as I do at the beginning of every one of my Survivor recaps, please heed the following: Remember that this recap assumes that you have already seen this week’s Premiere Episode of Big Brother 21. If you have not and don’t want to be spoiled, please come back later! It’s important to add that while we WILL hit on all of the important developments of the episode, this is not a linear “blow-by-blow” recap. It is more of a discussion and reaction of what we just witnessed together.


Big Brother 21 Premiere Recap: Camp Is In Session!

So welcome house guests, and welcome all of you! It’s super-cool to be able to discuss Big Brother this Summer, as I’ve been a huge fan for quite a long time. Those that follow my Survivor coverage on this site know that I’m a Survivor super-fan, like, it’s my favorite show and no one can ever tell me that it isn’t the greatest Reality TV show of all-time. But I also LOVE me some Big Brother, and I think it’s a perfect fit for a Summer show, where its sort of silly and goofy and doesn’t take itself too seriously (who needs wants to exert their brain-power when it’s Summer-time?). Best of all, it’s Finale on September 25th happens to line-up with the Premiere date of Survivor Season 39, “The Island of the Idols.” That, my friends, should be an epic night of coverage on this site.

But of course, there is a LOT of time between now and September 25th! Tonight’s first 30-minutes gave us introductions to the all-new contestants, and reiterated the show’s motto: To “expect the unexpected.” This motto, of course, doesn’t quite apply to the show’s casting process. While it was great seeing good ole “Chen-Bot” (Chen-Moonves-Bot?) walk through the doors of the Big Brother house to kick off yet another season, I was a bit disappointed at how most of the cast neatly fit into the “types” that the show has recruited in recent seasons. There’s always the big macho guy (Jack), the cocky shorter macho guy (Jackson), the ditsy blonde (Kathryn) and the token black guy and girl (David and Kemi).

When it comes to diversity, they always include a few people of color, but they are almost always presented in the same fashion…case in point: Tonight we heard David describe himself as an athlete and Kemi as a “reformed bad girl.” As to present us with nearly every stereotype in the book, we also met Isabella and her “Tiger Mom,” the mostly derogatory term usually associated with Asian women.

Big Brother 21 Premiere Recap: Camp Is In Session!

And because this is Big Brother, that wasn’t all. We have the token gay guy (Tommy), the nerd (Ovi) and the eccentric “Rockstar” type (Nicole). The “don’t judge me on my looks” gal (Analyse) and the one old guy (Cliff) who quite simply doesn’t have a fighting chance, especially when the show makes him dress like Howdy Doody. I can’t quite define what they are, but Sam, Nick and Holly also feel like stereotypes we’ve seen before on the show. Please keep in mind that this isn’t coming from an angle of hating on the show or this particular cast…there are many “characters” this season that showed lots of potential tonight, and Big Brother is almost always credited with solid casting. But it is disappointing that they keep going with the same casting formula season after season.

The only two exceptions in the cast for me were Christie and Jessica. Christie established herself as an interesting character, especially when it was revealed that she actually knows another house guest, Tommy (more on this in a sec). With Jessica, I was very relieved to see her on the show as plus-size models (or plus-size people in general) are seen few and far between across the entire Reality TV landscape (unless the show is about their weight, like The Biggest Loser). She seems to be in trouble early however, now that Jackson will be the first-ever BB Camp Director, despite what all of the girls had told her.

Big Brother 21 Premiere Recap: Camp Is In Session!

But back to Christie and Tommy for a minute: Is this the only pair in the house that knows each other? We didn’t get any other reveals, but it is possible that the show might be holding some of this info back to make bigger reveals in future episodes. If you look at some of the hometowns and backgrounds, there are some possible connections (both Jack and David are photographers, and we saw that both Ovi and Jackson are from Tennessee).

We also need to know more about the nature of Christie’s relationship with Tommy and her ex, before we can really understand if they have a chance at becoming allies…who exactly did Christie date? How did it end and who is perceived to be at fault? Sometimes the enemy you know is slightly better than the enemy you don’t, so I think that it’s more likely an advantage for Christie and Tommy to know each other, than a disadvantage.

Big Brother 21 Premiere Recap: Camp Is In Session!

Other than the introductions and the vote for the Camp Director, we didn’t get enough information to really see how lines are being drawn in the house just yet. That being said, Jackson seems to be the type of guy who doesn’t stand much of a chance of making it far in the game. Taking on the role of Camp Director ensures he won’t be the first person voted out, but his upcoming decision – to have to banish four players from the game only to have three of them fight their way back in – is not an ideal situation for anyone to be in to start the game.

And he may think that he and Jack can run the game and win every other HOH, but that’s simply just not the way this game is built…there are too many challenges based on pure luck, or that require more than just physical strength.

RELATED: Meet The Cast Of Big Brother 21!

Big Brother 21 Premiere Recap: Camp Is In Session!

Speaking of Jack, he looks like he wins the prize as this season’s HOTH (heartthrob of the House). We will see his personality and strategic skills emerge in the coming weeks, but with other physical threats like Jackson and David in the house, and due to the fact that most every female in the house wanted to work with him in some way, might Jack stay around for a large portion of the Summer?

Big Brother 21 Premiere Recap: Camp Is In Session!

Big Brother 21 is underway and with averaging three episodes per week, I know it can be a bit daunting to follow. So here is some help. I give you the upcoming Big Brother schedule:

  • Wednesday, 6/26 – Part Two of the two-night Premiere, “Battle Back” Competition and First House Guest Eliminated, HOH Endurance Competition begins
  • Sunday, 6/30 – POV Competition and Ceremony
  • Tuesday, 7/2 – First Live Eviction Episode (2nd House Guest evicted)

This Season: You can count on at least one of these Recaps each week, usually following the Eviction. That means that I’ll be back with a Recap following next Tuesday’s episode, discussing everything that happened over the course of these three episodes (above). In the meantime, if you have comments or are dying to discuss the show, use the comment section of this article (below) as a sounding board! Here’s looking forward to a fun-filled Summer full of “unexpected” twists, as we look to cover everything going on in the Big Brother House, from A to Zingbot.

See you next week!


[Photo Credits: Monty Brinton/CBS ©2019 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved]