It's no big secret that the producers of reality shows like Big Brother strive to create storylines to provide the best entertainment and bring in the biggest ratings. It's also no surprise then that they try and control who is voted out each week.
Nowhere is this more obvious than in The X Factor, which sofabet have written about many times. But in Big Brother, where only two contestants each week are voted on by the public, the situation is a little different.
This week, the two housemates up for eviction are Arron and Chris. But who do the producers want out?
There's considerable evidence pointing to the idea that they're trying to steer the vote towards Arron (viewers vote for whom they want to stay). With no live feed, viewers have no choice but to be fed the version of events presented in each evening's highlights program.
Tonight, in a task where contestants are not allowed to laugh, Big Brother had Arron wear several silly costumes, putting him at the centre of events, in potentially sympathy-winning situations. The third of these costumes also allowed him to show off what's perhaps his best asset - his body. Shots like the one below are surely enough to win him some votes from a certain, not inconsiderably-sized demographic of viewer.
Indeed, the theory is backed up by articles on DigitalSpy featuring the two nominees, both shirtless. There's an obvious voting pull right there, as there was in Tuesday nights episode when, right before the voting numbers, the pair discussed their nominations while Arron stood naked and dripping wet in the shower.
Elsewhere in tonight's program, Chris's edit featured him largely being unpleasant and argumentative, largely with Becky. However, the show did go out of its way to show a particularly odd disagreement between Arron and Deana followed by an almost comically insincere apology by the former. And while Arron is being given every opportunity to sell his body for votes, he's also being provided with all the rope he needs to hang himself as the show gives him reason after reason to display his vanity.
Overall, it's hard to say who the producers want to stay this week. I was initially leaning towards Arron, but Big Brother's Bit on the Side, the talkshow following each evening's episode, made a point of campaigning for Chris tonight. On a purely shallow level I'd personally prefer Arron to stay, as well as because I find Chris (more) annoying. And it would make sense if the producers did too. Arron's good eye candy, and while Chris causes conflict which will be seen as entertaining, Arron certainly has the potential to do the same.
I'm loving this series of Big Brother, and I'm very pleased that after so many years the contestants are finally allowed to discuss nominations and strategise. Let me know what you think about this, and about Arron and Chris, below.