A couple of years ago, I had the enormous fortune to be out of the country when Big Brother started to extend its long, languorous, vile tongue over the summer schedules. I missed the launch show, and when I returned, I had no idea who the housemates were, and proceeded to completely and utterly not care about their shenanigans for the whole series. It was quite a liberating experience, enabling me to go a whole 10 weeks without my very soul seething with unpronounceable rage, and regrettably, not an experience which has been repeated this year. This year, I made the fatal mistake of watching the launch on the flimsy pretext that "I might know someone on the show" - unlikely, as myself and my peer group are around 40% too old and around 700% too beige to ever be considered for public consumption of this manner - and this year, Big Brother has again got me hooked immediately, like some ridiculous soap character who tokes half a joint one night and the next is whoring themselves to random sleazy extras to fund their sudden, and completely logical in soapland, heroin habit.
So, BB9, with 16 housemates, none of which I know. The theme this year seems to be "Battling Against Adversity!" with two single mums, two escapees from war zones, a black albino guy (or is it an albino black guy? Is there a hierarchy of descriptive nouns? Ugh, liberal guilt has anthromorphised into the cup in front of me, which is now putting on a sad face and telling me I should probably refer to him just as Darnell) and a blind guy. Thus causing a mass outbreak of hand wringing and wheedly Peep Show-esque voices in the voting public, as we collectively ponder, "Can we vote for the blind guy?" Answer being, course we can, as I'm sure he'd not appreciate being figuratively patted on the head and told he is a brave little soldier, or other such patronising ptooey. But, alas, that debate is for places much, much more highbrow than here.
The villain of the piece has emerged in the shape of Alex, who has spent her entire time in the house provoking others into long and largely incomprehensible ranting arguments, whilst simultaneously loudly claiming that she is absolutely not arguing. Much like Charley before her, she is one of those tremendously self-absorbed people who seems to think that every action and event in the house is designed specifically to be a personal slight against her, and she must vociferously defend herself and her iron clad ideals of "respect." Christ knows how she gets anything done in the real world, as on this evidence, she appears to find anyone talking or breathing in her immediately vicinity "disrespectful". It's extreme paranoia disguised as inner strength. Or something. Anyway, within the first five days she has alienated everyone else in the house, so she'll no doubt change her tune, leave, or be voted out before she makes any indelible impressions.
No-one else in the house has made any other impression on me at all, but it's early days. And I will watch. Oh yes, I will watch. For I am hooked. I'm off to flagellate myself with pieces of birch for my terrible sins.