As yet another season of Big Brother Naija – one of the most polarizing and ironically uniting shows on TV – comes to an end, #WithChude brought four former housemates of the reality TV show to a roundtable special where they got to bare it all on their experience being in front of the camera for 90 days while the eyes of millions of people scrutinized their every reaction and judged every move they made at face value.
Former housemate, BamBam who found herself at the centre of what appeared to be a smear campaign accusing her of being fake and playing for the camera, explains how that still haunts her and why there is no iota of truth to the accusation beyond the fact that she was just being human and responding the way her disposition dictated.
“I found myself reacting to the camera along the line and trying to be cautious, but that was when Tobi [created a] narrative that I was deliberately playing to the camera,” BamBam revealed.
The speculation among viewers and lovers of the show that it may be scripted had propelled the rumour to the extent that even fellow housemates began to buy into it. This, BamBam confirmed, had affected her mainly because while at first, she did not take things seriously, she soon discovered that the rumour was taking a form of its own.
“Initially I didn’t take it seriously, but then I noticed that he started drawing people into his narrative,” she said. “He started infecting Leo, he started infecting even Teddy. Then it started to annoy me!” Teddy-A was BamBam’s love interest on the show, now her husband and the father of her child.
K-Brule who got disqualified following 3 strikes on the 2018 season of the show, including one strike for ‘alleged’ infliction of self-harm, disclosed that no such thing in fact happened. He blamed the mix up on the complexity of telling a story with multiple timelines on a single screen.
“Big Brother actually shows everything. [But] you know it is not possible to show 20 timelines all at the same time, so they had to pick and choose.
“So at the point where they cut to Anto and Lolu, they were showing something else in the room downstairs. They didn’t show what I was doing. They didn’t show what led to me going upstairs. They didn’t show me take off my clothes, remove my shoes and lie down to sleep … They didn’t show a lot of things,” he said.
“What they showed is why this thing came out. It’s been so disruptive for me because now it appears that if something doesn’t go my way, I will kill myself.”
Other ex-housemates, Miyonse and Lilo, who were respectively on the 2017 and 2020 seasons of the show, also came forward with their story on the insider view of a show that has come to win the hearts of its mostly young Nigerian viewers, yet does little to indeed reveal the human side of the stars these viewers love so fiercely.
#WithChude is a special series of targeted multimedia conversations and investigations focused on narratives that enable and strengthen the mind, heart, and spirit.
New episodes of #WithChude show every Saturday at 9pm on TVC Entertainment. With reruns every Sunday on Wazobia TV at 5pm and every Thursday on EbonyLife TV at 7:30pm.
An extended play podcast is up on Spotify, iTunes, among other podcast platforms every Wednesday at 10:00am. Everyone can join the conversations.