Entertainment

Big Brother is back! The reality show returns to British TV after five years

The new series of Big Brother launched on Sunday (ITV/PA)
The new series of Big Brother launched on Sunday (ITV/PA) The new series of Big Brother launched on Sunday (ITV/PA)

Big Brother has returned to British television with a barman, make-up artist, butcher and youth worker among the contestants entering the famous house.

The influential social experiment, which sees housemates live together in a custom-built home for weeks without access to the outside world in a bid to win £100,000, has opened its doors for the first time in five years.

The reality series returned to ITV on Sunday, after it was axed by Channel 5 amid a ratings slump in 2018, with new hosts AJ Odudu and Will Best introducing a batch of 16 contestants to the brand-new house in front of a live studio audience.

Jenkin, 25, from Bridgend in Wales, who described himself as a barman, cleaner and bingo-caller and will “bring the drama”, was the first contestant to enter the new house.

He was closely followed by 50-year-old “proud Muslim” and make-up artist Farida and butcher Tom, 21, from Somerset, who said he was “funny and outgoing”.

Meanwhile, the youngest contestant to enter the Big Brother house was 18-year-old youth worker Hallie, who has never lived away from home before.

Big Brother started in 2000 on Channel 4 before Channel 5 took over in 2011, airing in the UK for a total of 18 years.

Ahead of the launch show, Odudu and Best asked fans of the show to be kind online, posting a video to the official Big Brother Instagram sending a reminder that the “housemates are real people with their real lives”.

Odudu added: “Let’s make this the most positive series yet and give all of the housemates the respect that you would wish for if you were a housemate too. Is that a deal?”

Similar to recent series of ITV’s Love Island, housemates and their family and friends have also been asked to not post any content about the show on their individual social media accounts while they are in the house.

It comes as broadcasters’ duty of care policies have faced scrutiny following a number of controversies involving on-screen talent.

While the new batch of housemates have received respect and inclusion training to set out the “expectation for appropriate behaviour and language” before they take part in the show, ITV previously said.

Big Brother will air nightly on ITV2 and ITVX, excluding Saturdays.