Big Brother to add celebrities to normal show in bizarre mash-up?

Celebrity, civilian, celebivilian… who knows who’s going into the house

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Channel 5’s Big Brother is apparently planning a shake-up of its civilian series, by adding celebrities in as well…

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Yes, scratch your head you may well do because we already have a celebrity version. You know, Celebrity Big Brother.

OK, so this would be ‘regular’ folk actually mixed in with celebrities, rather than the usual series separation. So it would technically be different. Then again, it’s not always easy to tell which is which these days. James Hill won the summer 2015 celebrity series and we’ll give you ten points if you can remember which other reality show he’d just wandered over from. Maybe we wouldn’t have actually noticed. 

Indeed, judging by the rumoured famous faces set to be mixed in they could pretty much pass in either version of the show.

“The producers have been approaching people from Gogglebox, TOWIE and Ex On The Beach and have some great names lined up,” a source told Now.

Although, I don’t know what we’re expecting: Hugh Jackman is hardly going to be doing the dishes while Emma Stone sits in the diary room moaning that he’s getting on her nerves. John Boyega isn’t going to be sat in the garden ‘forgetting’ the cameras are there and dishing on all the secrets of Star Wars Episode VIII (although I’d give up every evening to watch that).

The civilian series has dabbled in the addition of celebrities in the past. House ‘guests’ that pop in for tasks tend to be familiar, if only from the world of Big Brother. 2008’s Celebrity Hijack saw various celebrities take control of the civilian house, while the celebrity version is also known to double up on its starriness, with names including Eamonn Holmes and Paul Burrell dropping in. In addition, Ultimate Big Brother in 2010 threw together contestants from both versions of the show, although this was more of a celebratory wave goodbye to former home Channel 4.

But is this full-series contestant mixing necessary? Sling a bunch of people into a house and force them to live together and there’s always going to be fireworks, regardless if we know anything about them. It’s the whole point of the show. It’s not like we’re bored of each other. We watch people watch TV for goodness sake. And we’re certainly not short of opportunities to watch celebrities on reality shows: Strictly, I’m A Celebrity, The Jump… heck, Brian McFadden’s managed to convince some famous faces to wash dishes and that’s had more than one series.

Ratings aren’t wildly different either. 2015’s summer celebrity version had a series average of 1.9 million. The May run of civilian BB in the same year drew an average of 1.4m.  

The oddest thing about it, however, is that the celebrities would apparently be added in to “split up the house”. So they might not interact that much anyway. This, forgive me, seems to entirely defeat the point.

But maybe I’m missing something. It’s people filmed living in a house together, does it really matter?

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Big Brother returns next month on Channel 5