Big Brother (UK series 5)

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Big Brother (UK series 5)
Big Brother UK 5 logo.png
Series five logo
Presented byDavina McCall
No. of days71
No. of housemates13
WinnerNadia Almada
Runner-upJason Cowan
Companion shows
Country of originUnited Kingdom
No. of episodes82
Release
Original networkChannel 4
Original release28 May (2004-05-28) –
6 August 2004 (2004-08-06)
Series chronology
← Previous
Series 4
Next →
Series 6

Big Brother 2004, also known as Big Brother 5, was the fifth series of the British reality television series Big Brother. The show followed thirteen contestants, known as housemates, who were isolated from the outside world for an extended period of time in a custom built House. Each week, one or more of the housemates were eliminated from the competition and left the House. The last remaining housemate, Nadia Almada, was declared the winner, winning a cash prize of £63,500.

The series launched on Channel 4 on 28 May 2004 and ended on 6 August 2004. It lasted 71 days - the longest series of Big Brother at the time and the eighth longest series to date. Davina McCall returned as presenter for her fifth consecutive year. Twelve housemates entered on launch night, with one additional housemate being introduced in the fifth week.

Following the negative reception of the "boring" previous series, several changes were made to the format. Big Brother became "evil", resulting in a higher-pressure environment for the housemates, more difficult tasks, fewer luxuries and more twists. Big Brother 5 ultimately became most memorable, and the subject of viewer complaints and press attention, for a physical altercation between housemates in the early hours of Day 20, which later became referred to by fans and in the press as "Fight Night".

The series was watched by an average of 5.1 million viewers, the second highest viewed series of the show to date (after Big Brother 3).

Production[edit]

Auditions[edit]

For the first time ever, housemates were selected via open auditions rather than via home video. The open audition process would go on to feature in each subsequent series until the thirteenth series in 2012.

Format[edit]

The Big Brother 5 prize fund

The series followed the same format as previous series of the programme. Twelve housemates lived in isolation from the outside world in a custom built house for a period of 71 days, hoping to be the last one to leave the house as the winner, and walk away with a large cash prize.

Promoted as "Big Brother goes evil", Big Brother 5 saw numerous changes occurring to the game. The main twist this series was that the grand prize had been increased to £100,000 for the winner, but was gradually taken away as the series went on based on Housemates' performances in various tasks. Nadia Almada, as the winner of the series, received a total of £63,500, meaning that the housemates lost £36,500 across the series. This series also became known for featuring the Big Brother Bedsit, in which Michelle and Emma were evicted from the Big Brother house, and sent to the BB Bedsit instead. Whilst in the Bedsit, they had a live feed of the house, which aired in the room non-stop for their viewing pleasure. They were granted access back into the house after five days. Yet another change in the format occurred on Day 69, when the Housemate with the fewest votes to win, was secretly evicted from the house through the Diary Room. This meant that only four Housemates would appear at the final, instead of five.

Broadcasts[edit]

The series premiered on 28 May 2004, on Channel 4. The contestants were recorded 24 hours a day[1] with cameras fixed around the house, and had to wear portable microphones. Big Brother 5 was the third of the main series to feature a live launch.[2] The launch night saw Davina give a house tour, as well as discuss rumors that had been going on about the series. She then introduced the new Housemates, and they entered the house live.

Channel 4 broadcast a daily highlights show, and from the first week there was a live eviction show hosted by Davina McCall, where the evicted housemate was interviewed. In the nightly highlight episodes, viewers are shown various highlights of a specific day in the house. Big Brother 5 saw the return of the psychiatrists providing commentary on events in the game, with the episodes featuring them being the highlights show after the most recent eviction. The live eviction episode was held on Friday, with a pre-eviction episode and an official eviction episode being held with a 30-minute gap between them. The series ended on 6 August 2004, lasting for a total of 71 days. This made it the longest season of the series at the time.

Spin-off programme Big Brother's Little Brother returned for a fourth year and second year on Channel 4, and was hosted once again by Dermot O'Leary. Live coverage continued to be a major part of E4's daily and nightly schedule.

The Saturday Night Live spin-off series, first introduced in Big Brother 3, saw Housemates competing in live tasks. It would last until midway through this, when it was axed due to poor ratings.

A new spin-off programme entitled Big Brother's E-Fourum, a nod to the network, was hosted by comedian Russell Brand, and featured an audience and viewer discussion and debate on housemates and events going on inside the house. The latter programme returned in subsequent series under a retooled format and was renamed Big Brother's Big Mouth. E4 once again screened Nominations Uncut on Tuesdays featuring extended nominations. Another new show Diary Room Uncut was broadcast on Thursday evening, featuring extra material from the Diary Room, if no nominations took place, Diary Room Uncut would be shown in place of Nominations Uncut.

Prizes[edit]

The thirteen Housemates in the game are competing for the grand prize, which eventually amounted to £63,500. Each week, the Housemates attempted to complete various tasks assigned by Big Brother in exchange for a weekly budget, which they used to buy food and luxuries; this included buying things such as alcohol and cigarettes.

House[edit]

The Big Brother house has been located at Elstree Studios, Borehamwood, Hertfordshire since Big Brother 3 onward. To go along with the format change of the "evil" Big Brother this year, the house was much smaller in size. The house was one-third smaller, and featured an elevated floor and a lowered ceiling, adding a feeling of claustrophobia. The kitchen remained simple, with only necessities such as an oven (on which the only reference of time was located in the entire house), fridge, and sink. There was only one bedroom, and housemates were required to go through the garden to get to the bedroom. With eight single beds and two double beds, housemates were forced to share beds, and when a Housemate was evicted from the series, their bed was removed from the house, effectively preventing bed swapping. The showers in the bathroom this season were made of glass which led out into the garden, thus providing Housemates with no privacy. The Diary Room this season featured a red and blue background, with a large red chair which was attached to the wall. Big Brother 5 was the first series to not feature the chickens in the backyard. The house for this series was later described as being "horrible",[3] with a member of production stating it was "designed to be as uncomfortable as possible, with none of the luxury gadgets of previous years."[4]

Bedsit[edit]

Located behind the Diary Room, the bedsit contains one double bed, a small kitchen, a small bathroom, tattered armchairs, a telephone and flowery wallpaper, the only modern feature of the bedsit is the plasma screen where housemates can view the main house. Outside the bedsit is a corridor leading to the Diary Room. Due to the close proximity of the bedsit to the main house, housemates were required to speak quietly in the bedsit to avoid detection. The bedsit was resurrected six years later in Ultimate Big Brother.

Housemates[edit]

Name Age on entry Hometown Day entered Day exited Result
Nadia Almada 27 London (originally from Madeira, Portugal) 1 71 Winner
Jason Cowan 30 South Lanarkshire 1 71 Runner-up
Daniel Bryan 30 Hull 1 71 3rd Place
Shell Jubin 22 Glasgow 1 71 4th Place
Stuart Wilson 20 Macclesfield 1 69 Evicted
Michelle Bass 23 Newcastle upon Tyne 1 64 Evicted
Victor Ebuwa 23 London 1 57 Evicted
Ahmed Aghil 44 Liverpool/London 1 50 Evicted
Becki Seddiki 33 London 31 43 Evicted
Marco Sabba 21 Middlesex 1 36 Evicted
Vanessa Nimmo 26 South Africa 1 29 Evicted
Emma Greenwood 20 Oldham 1 23 Ejected
Kitten Pinder 24 Brighton 1 8 Ejected

Summary[edit]

On Day 1, Housemates Marco, Ahmed, Jason, Daniel, Stuart, Victor, Vanessa, Emma, Kitten, Michelle, Shell and Nadia entered the house.[5] The Housemates were not allowed to bring their luggage into the house with them, and it was later revealed that one Housemate would not receive their luggage throughout their entire stay in the house. On Day 2, the Housemates were individually called to the Diary Room, and had to nominate the Housemate they felt was least deserving of their suitcase; Kitten was selected, receiving seven votes total.[6] Kitten chose not to go in the Diary Room and vote, thus automatically selected herself. Only five Housemates did not vote for Kitten; Nadia and Ahmed voted for Michelle, Emma voted for Victor, Daniel voted for Marco and Stuart voted for Ahmed.[7] That same night, it was revealed that an eviction would occur that week, however, the evicted Housemate would not actually be evicted, but would be able to watch the Housemates before returning to the house. On Day 5, the Housemates moved the alcohol fridge into the bedroom, and were reprimanded by Big Brother.[8] Following this, Kitten received a second warning, and it was revealed that an eviction would occur should she break another. On Day 6, Kitten received her third strike for painting the mirrors in the house. Housemates were not told when the eviction would be, or who would be evicted. On Day 8, it was revealed that Kitten had been expelled from the house, and had to immediately leave.[9][10] Kitten refused to leave the house, thus Big Brother revealed that the grand prize of £100,000 would decrease by £1,000 for each minute Kitten spent in the house.[11][12] Kitten left the house only a minute later, though she lost the group £9,000, despite the rule being they would lose £1,000 per minute. This brought the grand prize to a total of £91,000.

On Day 9, Housemates were given their new task. They had to select one Housemate who they felt was the smartest, and had to select another Housemate who they felt was the strongest person; Stuart and Jason were selected, respectively. Stuart had to answer nine general knowledge questions in the Diary Room, with the grand prize fund being reduced by £1,000 for each incorrect answer he gave. Outside, the other Housemates were strapped onto a turntable, which Jason was required to spin around in circles. For each question Stuart answered correctly, a Housemate could be removed from the turntable, thus making it easier to spin. Stuart answered four questions incorrectly, and Ahmed cost the group £1,000 by not participating. This brought the grand prize fund to £85,000 by the end of the task. On Day 10, the Housemates received their first weekly task. During the "Big Brother Food to Go" task, Housemates were required to run a fast food restaurant in which Big Brother could place an order at any time, and Housemates were required to make the order and take it to the Diary Room within thirty minutes. The task lasted for a total of four days. Completion of the task would result in the Housemates receiving a Privilege pass, which they could redeem for a privilege in the house. Housemates failed this task. That night, Emma and Victor engaged in an argument that required Big Brother to request that they be separated from one another; no warnings were given out. Due to the fake Double Eviction that would occur this week, a total of three nominees were required. Housemates Ahmed, Emma, and Michelle were nominated for eviction. Ahmed received a total of seven nominations, while Emma and Michelle received three each. Had three nominees not been required this week, the tie between Michelle and Emma would have caused there to be three anyway. On Day 15, Emma and Michelle were fake evicted from the House, and were instead taken to the "Big Brother Bedsit", where they could see and hear what was going on in the house.[13]

On Day 16, Emma and Michelle were given their first decision to make. They had to select one Housemate that would be required to take cold showers while in the house; they chose Victor.[14] That night, the Housemates were given their third live task to complete. Daniel, Jason, Stuart, and Vanessa took part in the first portion of the challenge, which was a human wheelbarrow race. Each pair took turns collecting tokens, with each token being worth ten seconds. The number of tokens collected determine how long Housemates will have to complete the second part of the challenge. The second half required Housemates to hang over the garden for the time that they earned in the first part of the challenge. If a Housemate fell, then the prize fund was reduced by £2,000, and if they succeeded it stayed the same. Following this task, the prize fund was £77,000.[15] On Day 17, Housemates were given their second weekly task, which had a football theme to coincide with the Euro 2004 championships that were occurring at the time. The first portion of the task required Housemates to select a country and make a mascot for the team. They had to perform an opening ceremony later that night.[16] That same day, Emma and Michelle were asked to bake a cake for their fellow Housemates. They chose to add chilli powder to the cake, which was delivered to the house for the opening ceremony.[17] On Day 18, Housemates participated in their second set of weekly nominations. Emma and Michelle could not be nominated this week, but could make nominations. This week saw Daniel and Vanessa being nominated for eviction, receiving five nominations each. For the second week in a row, Stuart and Shell received no nominations from their fellow Housemates. That same night, Emma and Michelle chose to vandalize Jason's bed. On Day 19, the two chose to put itching powder in one of Vanessa's shirts.[18] On Day 20, Emma and Michell returned to the house during a party in the main house. Their return led to a string of highly controversial fights in the house, which fans have since labeled "Fight Night."[19] The fights resulted in numerous warnings being given out, and Emma was sent to the Bedsit again; ultimately, she was ejected from the game on Day 23.[20]

Due to the various fights and instances of physical violence on Day 20, the planned eviction for Day 22 was postponed until the following week; Daniel and Vanessa still remained nominated for eviction.[21] Throughout Day 21, Housemates were called into the Diary Room and were given their first official warnings about violence in the house. On Day 23, after spending the past few days in the Big Brother Bedsit, Emma was officially ejected from the house after much consideration from Big Brother.[22] On Day 25, Housemates were given their new task, in which they had to cast their own body parts in plaster, and attach them to a chicken-wire frame, thus creating the "perfect Housemate." The Housemates finished this task by the following day. On Day 26, Housemates were given a task in which they had to create a film based on their time in the house, with the Housemates portraying one another. Housemates performed their film for Big Brother later that night, dressed in their costumes. On Day 29, it was revealed that Vanessa had become the first official Housemate to be evicted from the house, receiving 86% of the public vote. This made it the highest percentage of eviction votes received by a Housemate since Big Brother 2, when Stuart received the same amount.[23]

On Day 30, Housemates were given their fourth live task. The Housemates were required to stake £10,000 on the outcome of three different tests; if they fail a test, they will lose the amount they wagered on this. They wagered a total of £3,000 on the first part of the task, which required Victor to unscramble a word; he failed this task. The second portion saw the Housemates wagering £1,000 on their success. Victor and Jason had to roll Michelle around in a giant ball, knocking over obstacles within the time limit; they passed this task. They wagered £6,000 on the final portion of the task, and were required to guide a loop around wires attached to a helmet on Shell's head. They passed this task, thus only lost a total of £3,000 on this night. The prize fund therefore stood at £74,000.[24] On Day 31, new Housemate Becki entered the house as a replacement for Emma, who had been ejected eight days prior.[17][25] On Day 32, Housemates were given their new weekly task, for which Big Brother provided them with costumes. For the first part, Housemates had twenty seconds to gather their costumes and get on the stage before a song begins. That same day, Housemates participated in their third set of nominations. Marco and Nadia were nominated for eviction by their fellow Housemates, both of them receiving five nominations each. In a twist this week, Becki was allowed to secretly select one Housemate to nominate for eviction by kissing them on both cheeks, with this Housemate automatically being nominated for eviction; she selected Michelle.[26] The kiss was later dubbed the "Judas kiss" by the media.[17] This meant that Marco, Michelle, and Nadia were nominated for eviction. On Day 36, Marco was evicted from the house, having received 52% of the public vote.[27][28]

On Day 40, a plane flew over the house with a banner flying behind it explaining that only Becki had nominated Michelle for the previous week's eviction. Some housemates saw it before Big Brother was able to return them to the bedroom and close the blinds. The housemates speculated on the message and Becki was forced to lie to them, telling them that the banner was false, in order to keep her nomination a secret, as instructed by Big Brother. Michelle, who was in the Diary Room at the time, had to stay there until the plane was confirmed to have left the airspace above the house.

Housemates weekly task was based around going back to school. Housemates had to attend registration in the morning, and were set several mini-tasks based on school subjects. They failed the task after Nadia misspelled "balloon" in a spelling bee task, causing the housemates to protest as English was not her first language. The housemates staged a silent protest after failing the shopping task, and in the afternoon started to rebel against Big Brother. Michelle decided to steal the Diary Room camera and unsuccessfully attempted to incinerate it using a match. As punishment for this, Michelle was given her "first and final warning". Daniel, Shell, Stuart, and Nadia were also each issued warnings because Daniel, Shell, and Nadia helped Michelle steal the camera and Stuart gathered the hay that Michelle tried to ignite. Stuart was also individually punished by being made to watch a video of the cowboy hat he had cherished being burned outside of the house. Prize money dropped by £2,500 to £71,500 during a farmer/cow task. Becki was evicted on Day 43.

Big Brother gave the housemates a boot camp task. Jason and Michelle were selected as sergeants while the rest of the housemates were privates. In the Diary Room, Jason and Michelle were told that if the privates passed the task, then they would be up for eviction, and if the privates failed the task, then the two sergeants would be nominated. The privates passed, and all six were automatically nominated for eviction. On Day 48, the housemates participated in a dating service. The prize money remained at £71,500. Ahmed was evicted on Day 50.

The housemates were set a wedding task, and Shell and Victor were chosen as the bride and groom. Nadia was the bridesmaid, Daniel was the best man, Jason held the service and Michelle sang at the service. The housemates took part in all traditional events of a wedding including a hen and stag night, and the service itself, but failed the task on the first day. The wedding became memorable for sparking the argument between Shell and Victor, and for Michelle's rendition of the song "Pie Jesu" at the service. Prize money dropped to £56,500 after a fish-guts task. The housemates could have won the £15,000 back if Michelle (who is a vegetarian) drank a glass of fish milkshake or £5,000 if anyone else did, but it was thrown away amid speculation that it was not a good idea healthwise. Later on that week, three people failed a task, losing £1,000 each, resulting in the prize dropping further to £53,500. Victor was evicted on Day 57. It was reported that before the argument between Victor and Shell, Jason was considerably far ahead in the votes, but Victor had overtaken him in the aftermath of the fight.

The housemates were weighed, and were then chained together in pairs based on their weight. Daniel and Nadia, the heaviest man and woman were shackled together by the foot, Jason and Michelle were chained together by the arm, and the lightest man and woman - Stuart and Shell were shackled together by the waist. Housemates were made to stay shackled together except for when they were in the diary room or in the bathroom, and had to apply each other's makeup and brush each other's teeth, as well as competing in mini-tasks, including making pottery and writing a short story as a pair, typing only one letter each at a time. Housemates passed the task. Michelle was evicted on Day 64.

Housemates were given a chance to win back £10,000 by drinking shots, some of which included fish guts. Their total was then £63,500. Stuart was secretly evicted during a party on Day 69 having received the least votes to win at that point. He was not given a chance to say goodbye to his fellow housemates, who all initially felt that he had won the series after hearing the crowds reaction to him when he left the building. Nadia, as expected by all the bookmakers (she was favourite for six weeks), won Big Brother (UK) 2004 with 74% of the vote. She was greeted by an adoring crowd who chanted her name.

Nominations table[edit]

Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9 Week 10
Final
Nominations
received
Nadia No
nominations
Ahmed,
Daniel
Daniel,
Vanessa
No
nominations
Jason,
Victor
Jason,
Victor
Private
in task
Jason,
Victor
No
nominations
Winner
(Day 71)
13
Jason No
nominations
Marco,
Emma
Nadia,
Marco
No
nominations
Nadia,
Marco
Banned Sergeant
in task
Nadia,
Daniel
No
nominations
Runner-up
(Day 71)
13
Daniel No
nominations
Ahmed,
Michelle
Nadia,
Ahmed
No
nominations
Marco,
Jason
Victor,
Becki
Private
in task
Victor,
Shell
No
nominations
Third place
(Day 71)
13
Shell No
nominations
Ahmed,
Michelle
Ahmed,
Daniel
No
nominations
Marco,
Nadia
Becki,
Jason
Private
in task
Jason,
Victor
No
nominations
Fourth place
(Day 71)
2
Stuart No
nominations
Ahmed,
Vanessa
Daniel,
Vanessa
No
nominations
Shell,
Nadia
Ahmed,
Becki
Private
in task
Daniel,
Nadia
No
nominations
Evicted
(Day 69)
0
Michelle No
nominations
Ahmed,
Jason
Victor,
Jason
No
nominations
Jason,
Ahmed
Ahmed,
Becki
Sergeant
in task
Jason,
Daniel
No
nominations
Evicted
(Day 64)
4
Victor No
nominations
Emma,
Nadia
Daniel,
Vanessa
No
nominations
Marco,
Nadia
Banned Private
in task
Daniel,
Nadia
Evicted
(Day 57)
10
Ahmed No
nominations
Marco,
Emma
Vanessa,
Marco
No
nominations
Marco,
Nadia
Nadia,
Daniel
Private
in task
Evicted
(Day 50)
14
Becki Not in
House
Michelle Daniel,
Ahmed
Evicted
(Day 43)
4
Marco No
nominations
Jason,
Ahmed
Daniel,
Vanessa
No
nominations
Jason,
Victor
Evicted
(Day 36)
9
Vanessa No
nominations
Ahmed,
Michelle
Ahmed,
Nadia
No
nominations
Evicted
(Day 29)
6
Emma No
nominations
Victor,
Daniel
Victor,
Jason
Ejected
(Day 23)
3
Kitten No
nominations
Ejected
(Day 8)
N/A
Nomination note 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 none 8 9
Against
public vote
none Ahmed,
Emma,
Michelle
Daniel,
Vanessa
Marco,
Michelle,
Nadia
Ahmed,
Becki
Ahmed,
Daniel,
Nadia,
Shell,
Stuart,
Victor
Daniel,
Jason,
Nadia,
Victor
Daniel,
Jason,
Michelle,
Nadia,
Shell,
Stuart
Daniel,
Jason,
Nadia,
Shell,
Stuart
Ejected Kitten none Emma none
Evicted None Emma
29%
to move
Eviction
postponed
Vanessa
86%
to evict
Marco
52%
to evict
Becki
62%
to evict
Ahmed
56%
to evict
Victor
47%
to evict
Michelle
67%
to evict
Stuart
7%
(out of 5)
Shell
9%
(out of 4)
Daniel
17%
(out of 3)
Jason
26%
(out of 2)
Michelle
54%
to move
Nadia
74%
to win

Notes[edit]

  • ^Note 1 : Rather than nominating who they wanted to leave, housemates had to vote who they didn't want to receive their suitcase.. Kitten refused to vote and was later ejected by Big Brother after constant rule breaking.
  • ^Note 2 : The housemates were told there was a double eviction. In reality, the public voted for which two housemates would enter a secret Big Brother Bedsit, where the two evictees would live for five days, be able to watch their fellow housemates on a television screen, and then return to the house, still eligible to win the prize money. Emma and Michelle received the most votes and moved into the Bedsit.
  • ^Note 3 : Emma and Michelle made their nominations from the Bedsit. The other housemates could not nominate them, assuming them to be evicted.
  • ^Note 4 : Due to Emma’s ejection from the house, Week 3’s eviction was postponed until Week 4.
  • ^Note 5 : As a new housemate, Becki could not be nominated by her fellow housemates, and believed she could not nominate. However, Big Brother told her that she must nominate one housemate who will automatically face eviction by kissing them. If she didn't do this, she would automatically face eviction. Becki kissed Michelle, meaning she was up for eviction against the two housemates with the most nominations, Marco and Nadia.
  • ^Note 6 : As punishment for constant discussion of nominations, Jason and Victor were banned from nominating.
  • ^Note 7 : In the army task, sergeants Jason and Michelle were told of the twist in nominations. If the privates passed the task, all six privates would face eviction. If the privates failed, sergeants would face eviction. The Privates passed, meaning the six of them faced eviction.
  • ^Note 8 : There were no nominations in Week 9. Instead, all housemates automatically faced eviction.
  • ^Note 9 : There were no nominations in the final week. The housemate with the least public votes to win was evicted in a surprise eviction during a party. Stuart was evicted, leaving Daniel, Jason, Nadia and Shell in the final four.

Suitcase voting[edit]

Housemate Vote Votes
Ahmed Michelle 1
Daniel Marco 0
Emma Victor 0
Jason Kitten 0
Kitten Refused 71
Marco Kitten 1
Michelle Kitten 2
Nadia Michelle 0
Shell Kitten 0
Stuart Ahmed 0
Vanessa Kitten 0
Victor Kitten 1
  1. Kitten refused to vote and therefore cast a vote against herself. Even if she did vote, she would still not receive her suitcase.

Viewership[edit]

These viewing figures are taken from BARB.[29]

Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9 Week 10
Sat 3.86m 3.09m 2.85m 3.22m 3.20m 2.55m 2.71m 2.89m 3.25m 2.78m
Sun 3.89m 3.01m 4.23m 4.05m 3.64m 4.65m 4.03m 4.58m 4.28m 1.91m
Mon 3.53m 4.42m 5.01m 5.27m 4.91m 4.89m 5.10m 5.70m 5.35m 5.50m
Tue 4.50m 4.70m 6.13m 5.21m 5.77m 5.58m 6.58m 6.26m 5.35m 5.71m
Wed 4.71m 4.79m 6.70m 4.98m 5.35m 5.54m 6.41m 6.00m 5.38m 7.70m
Thu 5.10m 4.76m 6.95m 2.17m 4.92m 5.61m 5.60m 5.99m 5.18m 5.09m
Fri 7.23m 4.55m 5.17m 4.99m 4.45m 5.28m 5.19m 5.66m 5.36m 5.77m 6.41m
5.36m 6.24m 6.22m 5.66m 6.07m 5.87m 6.27m 6.27m 6.57m 8.98m
Weekly
average
4.75m 4.52m 5.39m 4.38m 4.89m 4.99m 5.30m 5.38m 5.14m 5.51m
Running
average
4.75m 4.64m 4.89m 4.76m 4.79m 4.82m 4.89m 4.95m 4.97m 5.03m
Series
average
5.03m

"Fight Night"[edit]

On Day 20 in the House, a series of altercations began in the House, which eventually escalated and became physical. The incident was subsequently referred to as "Fight Night" by the press, by fans of the show, and, in a live episode the night after the incident was shown, by presenter Davina McCall.

Background[edit]

On Day 15, Emma and Michelle were sent to a secret room in the House named "the Bedsit" as part of a fake eviction. They were given access to live streaming from the House, were able to observe housemates' conversations and play pranks on them.[18] Under the impression that they had been evicted, some of the remaining housemates spoke poorly of Emma and Michelle.[30]

On 16 June, which was Day 20 in the House, Emma and Michelle were returned to the House from the Bedsit. Upon their return, the housemates were provided with fancy dress costumes, party food and alcohol.

Incident[edit]

In the early hours of 17 June, some of the housemates engaged in a playful food fight, leaving the communal living area in a mess. When Jason insisted that they tidy up their mess, Marco refused, prompting an argument between the pair.[31] Nadia and Emma intervened in defence of Marco, with Nadia flipping over a table and, at one point, she slapped Jason.[32]

The argument continued to escalate, with Emma and Victor squaring up to each other. Emma and Victor began throwing more food at each other, with Emma eventually throwing an empty tray at him. When Victor retaliated by throwing the same tray at Emma, hitting her in the back of the head, she raced towards him, and a scuffle ensued, while other housemates attempted to separate them.[33] Big Brother repeatedly called Victor to the Diary Room and, as Stuart attempted to get him to comply, Emma was physically carried to the bedroom by Dan, whilst she screamed "I'll fucking kill you" at Victor.[31]

The arguments led to Shell becoming very emotional, and she hid in the bathroom where she was comforted by Vanessa. Nadia entered the bathroom with the intent of apologising for upsetting Shell, but ended up having an argument with Vanessa.

At the beginning of the altercations, Big Brother placed security guards into the camera runs surrounding the House. Approximately twenty minutes after the altercations began, Big Brother sent the guards into the House via the bedroom. Housemates were then separated and monitored throughout the night by guards stationed within the House.

Response within the House[edit]

The events of the night led Jason to decide to walk from the game, though he was later talked out of it.[34] Emma was placed back in the Bedsit, in an attempt to separate her from the rest of the housemates. Housemates Jason, Marco, Nadia, Vanessa, and Victor were all given formal warnings by Big Brother as a result of their behaviour during the incident.

Due to the incident, the planned eviction for Day 22 was postponed until the following week;[35] Daniel and Vanessa still remained nominated for eviction.[21] On Day 23, after spending two days in the Bedsit, Emma was officially ejected from the House by Big Brother.[36] In a statement released by the show, which was also read to the housemates, Big Brother clarified that there was no suggestion that she was "any more to blame" than anyone else for the incident, but that reintroducing her to the House "may [have increased] the risk of a repeat incident".[36][37]

Public reaction, broadcaster response and aftermath[edit]

The event caused much controversy outside the House. Some of the incident was streamed live on Channel 4's sister channel E4, and online. Once the major scuffle between Emma and Victor ensued, the video stream cut to a "safety shot" of the garden. However, the audio continued, and screaming, shouting, glass breaking and Big Brother's repeated requests for Victor to come to the Diary Room could be heard. At approximately 2am, live streaming was suspended, and did not resume until 3:06am.[32] A number of viewers of the live streaming called the police over the incident, who arrived at the scene and requested a tape of the event.[18] A spokeswoman for the Hertfordshire Constabulary stated: "Our officers are currently in liaison with members of the Big Brother production team to see whether further action needs to be taken."[38]

The incident led to backlash from viewers, who criticized Channel 4.[18] At 6pm on 17 June, Channel 4 and Endemol issued the following statement:

The welfare and safety of the housemates is always our overriding concern, and with that in mind, the production team decided to intervene last night at a point where they felt the confrontation between the housemates had reached an unacceptable level. Our on site security team diffused the confrontation and the housemates were calmed down and sent to bed. The Big Brother production team has been talking to all housemates individually over the course of today with a view to sorting out tensions in the house and are closely monitoring them. They will be encouraging the housemates to work through their issues as a group. If they do not feel this is feasible they will consider an alternative course of action to guarantee the welfare of the housemates. As always, professional psychologists are monitoring the situation and are on hand if any of the housemates wish to speak to them. The local police have made enquiries about events in the house last night following a handful of calls from members of the public. At present they have given us no indication of any issues arising from last night's broadcast.[39]

Professor David Wilson, a criminologist working as a consultant on the series, decided to leave Big Brother,[21][40][41] referring to the incident as "hooliganism",[42] and stating: "When it was quite clear that some of the advice I had given in terms of how difficult it would be to re-introduce those two women without their [sic] being conflict, when I realised that advice hadn't been listened to, it was at that point I thought I should go."[42]

On 19 June, two days after the incident, Hertfordshire Constabulary released a joint statement with Channel 4 and Endemol, noting that they were "happy with the steps that Channel 4 and Endemol have taken since [the incident] to guarantee the safety of the housemates".[43]

Media regulator Ofcom received over 300 complaints[44] from viewers about the incident. After conducting an investigation, they concluded that the highlights show had been "appropriately edited and scheduled",[44] and had therefore not breached the Broadcasting Code. However, they also concluded that the live streaming of the event had breached the Code. They opined that "Channel 4 was continuing to treat as entertainment, a situation that had, from what viewers could see, become serious",[44] and "the intensity and repetition of verbal and physical violence exceeded viewers’ expectations".[44]

On the same day as Ofcom's adjudication was published, Channel 4 responded, stating: "The producers at the Elstree studio were very confident that the situation in the house was under their control [...] they decided that the events in the house should be relayed to viewers until the shouting had abated to reassure viewers that the outcome was not as bad as they might otherwise have imagined. Ofcom took a different view and we must accept their decision."[45]

The fight was later spoofed on the MTV series TRL, during which Emma, Marco, Vanessa, and Victor were present.[46]

Legacy[edit]

Since their appearance on Big Brother 5, numerous housemates have gone on to appear in later editions of the programme. Housemates Kitten, Marco, and Victor all appeared on the spin-off series Big Brother Panto in 2004,[47] along with housemates from the previous four editions.[48] Housemate Michelle later appeared on Big Brother 10 to participate in a task celebrating ten years of the programme.[49] Housemates Nadia, Michelle, and Victor were all official housemates on Ultimate Big Brother in 2010, with Nadia and Michelle being the third and fourth evicted housemates, respectively.[50] Victor made it to the finale of the season, where he came in fourth place.[51] Housemates Ahmed and Marco both made appearances in that series, though they were not competing to win.[52][53]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°39′23″N 0°16′02″W / 51.65639°N 0.26722°W / 51.65639; -0.26722