Picks and Pans Review: Big Brother

updated 07/31/2000 at 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 07/31/2000 01:00AM

CBS (Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, 8 p.m. ET)

Call me a survivor. I sat through the first six episodes of Big Brother.

Unless you live in a cloister untouched by CBS hype, you're aware that Big Brother is a "reality" series in which 10 strangers occupy a two-bedroom house rigged with cameras and microphones to record their every move and utterance, however aimless or banal. Magazine deadlines being what they are, I'm writing this review before the beginning of a ruthlessly democratic process whereby the audience banishes residents one by one until the presumably least offensive of the bunch claims a $500,000 prize at the close of the show's run (scheduled for late September). It's always fun to vote against somebody; that's the American way. But actually watching Big Brother five nights a week (total air time: 3½ hours) seems like the entertainment equivalent of enduring gavel-to-gavel convention coverage on C-SPAN.

Unless, of course, you organize Big Brother jeering parties. When William (black) and Brittany (white) have a racial argument, point out that his orange hat almost matches her orange hair. Next time college student Eddie mentions he's a broadcasting major and a theater minor, ask if that's why he tawks so good ("Ya know what um sayin'?"). When the announcer sets up a scene with something like "Jordan confides to Jamie about her night job," you can shout, "Confides? To Jamie and 10 million viewers?" By the way, Jordan is an "exotic dancer"—not that exhibitionism has anything to do with this program.

Bottom Line: Evict them all

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