Caution: Spoilers for upcoming episodes of “Big Brother” ahead!
The over-the-top drama is starting early on season 24 of “Big Brother”. It’s been one week since the new slate of 16 houseguests moved in, and strong cliques have formed and allegations of racism and racial bias have already made headlines.
The primary focus of some fans’ ire is on the treatment of Taylor Hale, a 27-year-old personal stylist and former Miss Michigan USA, who almost immediately became the target of rumours and bullying that have many fans — and former “Big Brother” contestants — slamming the behaviour of several houseguests.
After season 23’s historic victory by The Cookout — an alliance of the season’s Black houseguests which stuck together for the singular goal of making sure one of them became the show’s first-ever Black champion — the surprisingly quick turn against some of this season’s Black contestants became even more jarring.
From the season’s first Head of Household making some controversial chopping block nominations to the in-house behaviour that led to Taylor breaking down in tears on the livestream, here’s a look at all the early-season controversies swirling around the Big Brother house before the first eviction even goes down.
Taylor Brought to Tears
While only three episodes have aired thus far, the cameras in the “Big Brother” house run around the clock and fans can watch the live feeds anytime they want — meaning nearly all gameplay conversation can and usually will end up getting out for fans to see.
Taylor has become something of a focal point for the other houseguests, with Alyssa Snider and Paloma Aguilar conspiratorially calling her “pageant girl” behind her back and performing a cartoonish imitation of the way Taylor walks.
Others in the house have described her behaviour — which thus far has largely involved simply talking to other players — as “aggressive,” without really explaining what they mean.
Another houseguest, Joe “Pooch” Pucciarelli, has drawn fire for comments he made when suggesting that Taylor is “gonna show more of her true colours” if she ends up getting nominated for eviction, adding, “Whoever puts her up, it’s gonna be a loud week. A loud f**king week.”
Pooch: Taylor’s gonna show more of her true colors. Whoever puts her up, it’s gonna be a loud week. A loooud fucking week. There’s ppl who’ll calmly [__??] but she’ll let you know. It’s not worth the fucking headache
Kyle: I think if we talk & work w her, I think she will #bb24 https://t.co/Lg0Bzi6Mwj pic.twitter.com/MLjYARAmkN
— BB (@bbburner16) July 7, 2022
Meanwhile, Daniel Durston, the season’s first Head of Household, was heard telling fellow houseguest Nicole Layog, “The minute I saw her I knew it was going to be bad news.” The remarks have led some to accuse Daniel of making snap judgments based on her physical appearance.
“I toured for 10 years and I’ve met every race and culture possible in America that I could live with on buses and everything. And I know when I see someone’s eyes what’s up. Like their energy in their eyes,” Daniel explained. “My intuition is so high because of experiences like that.”
Daniel- The minute I saw her(Taylor) I knew it was going to be bad news.
Thank you, Daniel, for confirming that your reasons for wanting her out are based on assumptions you made based on her appearance. You say you’re not racist, but if the shoe fits…. #bb24 pic.twitter.com/eT6jWZc2dD
— Rawb Tweets Reality TV (@RawbTweets) July 11, 2022
Ultimately, as fans saw on Wednesday’s episode, Taylor got put up for eviction after the Power of Veto comp, and broke down in tears back in her room.
— bry.xcii | #BB24 updates | LiveFeeds (@bryxcii) July 11, 2022
Daniel Gets Emotional Over Being Seen as Racist
After becoming the first Head of Household, it was Daniel’s job to nominate two contestants for eviction. He ultimately put Michael Bruner and Terrance Higgins on the chopping block.
However, Daniel made it clear that his true desire was to put Taylor on the block instead. However, even Daniel realized how this might make him look, telling houseguest Monte Taylor, “Dude, if people think I’m f**king racist when I leave this house, I’m f**ked.”
Later, while speaking with Paloma, he emotionally reiterated his concerns about looking racist if he puts up two Black contestants first thing off the bat.
“A lot of people are like, ‘It’s f**ked up to put two Black people on the block or vote two Black people out of the house, like Taylor then Terrance, but I don’t see if that way,” Paloma said, in remarks that would soon anger many fans online. “I think if America sees it that way, it’s ignorant in the sense that … I’m voting people out based on their gameplay and strategy right now. If it wasn’t Taylor, it would have been Terrance because Terrance’s strategy is lacking very much so.”
Ultimately, it seems the concern over appearing racist didn’t outweigh Daniel’s desire to see Taylor get evicted and he put her on the chopping block anyway — which fans will see play out on Wednesday’s episode.
The Cookout Speaks Out
The members of The Cookout alliance have been very vocal about the behavior they’ve seen in the first week of the season, with previous “Big Brother” winner Xavier Prather sharing a lengthy and impassioned statement to Twitter about the situation.
“Members of the black community (especially black women) and other people of color stand no chance in the Big Brother House due to the perpetuation of micro-aggressions and unconscious biases which plague our society,” Xavier shared. “I acknowledge my shortcomings during my time on Big Brother and I can’t help but feel partially responsible for some of the reprehensible behavior I see being exhibited from current houseguests who consider me one of their ‘favorites.’”
— Xavier Prather (@xaviereprather) July 10, 2022
“In the future, I hope it doesn’t take a ‘Cookout’ for black houseguests (or any POC houseguest) to finally escape the feeling of being ostracized within the Big Brother House for simply existing,” he continued. “Change is a MUST! Until then, I know my fellow Michigander will keep her head high and stand tall like the Queen that she is.”
Cookout member Hannah Chaddah shared, “I truthfully do not understand why everybody, their mom, their dad, their neighbor, their plant & their lint has taylor’s name in their mouth like it’s their full-time job it’s giving fan behavior & it’s unsettling.”
i truthfully do not understand why everybody, their mom, their dad, their neighbor, their plant & their lint has taylor’s name in their mouth like it’s their full-time job it’s giving fan behavior & it’s unsettling #BB24
— Hannah Chaddha (@hannah_chaddha) July 10, 2022
Tiffany Mitchell, who has been tweeting consistently about the live feeds and drama, wrote, “Watching Taylor cry really broke me down. I could never imagine what she feels like to be alone WEEK 1 when there are 15 other people in that house.”
— Tiffany Mitchell 👑 (@absolutelytiff) July 10, 2022
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