Thursday’s live Big Brother 11 eviction will be pre-taped, not live. The live studio audience is being told to arrive at 11:30 a.m. PT, not the usual 3:30, which is 90 minutes prior to the live show’s start. In other words, producers are giving themselves between four and five hours to tape and edit the show.
The obvious reason is that Jeff holds the coup d’etat, and will likely use it Thursday, and that will make the live show extremely unpredictable, whether Chima freaks out that her HOH power has been stripped from her or Jeff’s new nominees have meltdowns. In addition, while Big Brother tends to produce good live shows because they’re so formulaic, the second something moves outside of the formula, things crumble fast. For example, once when an HOH had to break a tie, the “about to be evicted” music ended long before that person actually made a decision. (I wish I could remember who that was, but my end-of-season cleansing ritual erases most memories.)
Since the coup has never been used, it’d be hard to figure out how much time that takes, so the production is buying themselves time to both tape and edit. Of course, that also means they can censor speeches, both for profanity or actual content, or leave stuff out, which means it might lose some of the drama that comes from that unpredictability.