In the U.K., Big Brother
gets a celebrity makeover for three weeks after the regular season is
over, with famous faces entering the house to play the game. It's a
novel concept, one I've been eager to see the U.S. try.
The 12th season of Celebrity Big Brother
began today in the U.K., and it featured several notable stars who even
American audiences would recognize. While there are mostly British
celebs (actors from the soap opera Coronation Street and other uniquely
English things), some are accessible to international viewers. Celebrity Big Brother 12
features two Americans, most notably Dustin Diamond, aka Screech from Saved by the Bell. So while Mario Lopez is hosting The X Factor
in the U.S. and Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Tiffani Thiessen star on top cable shows (Franklin and Bash
and White Collar
), Screech is stuck on British reality TV.
There's also Courtney Stodden, a reality star famous for marrying a much older man (Lost's Doug Hutchison). And if you remember the British boy band invasion 15 years ago, there's Abz from Five, who had a hit single in the U.S. with "When the Lights Go Out."Celebrity Big Brother 12
also features a number of British reality stars from shows similar to ones U.S. audiences know quite well, like the Real Housewives
franchise, Jersey Shore
and The Hills
The British version of Big Brother
is notably different from the U.S. version as viewers vote each week to decide which HG is evicted. The celebrity version is also different as it only runs for three weeks, thus making it easier to find celebrities willing to commit since it's a much smaller timeframe than a traditional season (Big Brother 15
in the U.S. runs nearly four times as long).
Here's a rundown of the housemates on Celebrity Big Brother 12
, which offers a tempting glimpse to the kind of people a U.S. version would get if they ever dared to try it.Dustin Diamond
: Most famous for playing nerdy Screech on Saved by the Bell
: The famous American "child bride" who married 51-year-old actor Doug Hutchison when she was 16.Abz Love
: An English singer, rapper and DJ who was a member of the boy band Five.
Charlotte Letitia Crosby: A star of the British reality show Geordie Shore, their version of Jersey Shore. Imagine a sluttier version of Snooki who proudly boasts about peeing herself.
Mario Falcone: The bad boy of the British reality show The Only Way Is Essex, a popular and award-winning Hills-esque docu-drama.
Danielle Marr: "The Botox Queen" from Dublin Wives, an Irish show similar to the Real Housewives franchise.
Bruce Jones: A former star of the British soap opera Coronation Street.
Vicky Entwhistle: Also a former star of the British soap opera Coronation Street, she placed Bruce Jones' wife.
Carol McGiffin: A frequent co-host of the British daytime talk show Loose Women who is notable for being a cougar with a much younger boyfriend.
Ron Atkinson: A former football player and manager of clubs such as Manchester United. That's British "football," so it's really soccer.
Louie Spence: A flamboyant English choreographer from Pineapple Dance Studios who worked with the Spice Girls.
Lauren Harries: A TV star and child prodigy in antiques who is transsexual.
Sophie Anderton: An English model.
(Image courtesy of WENN)