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Big Brother 25 delays premiere, admits lack of ideas, and sparks Survivor question

Big Brother 25 delays premiere, admits lack of ideas, and sparks Survivor question
The set of Big Brother 24 during its finale. The new season, Big Brother 25, likely won't conclude until late October. (Image from Big Brother via CBS)

CBS’s summer reality TV competition/dumpster Big Brother is returning this summer on CBS, of course, but not at its usual time.

The news came alongside other premiere date announcements:

  • The Challenge USA season 2 (here’s its cast) premieres Aug. 10 and air twice a week until the end of August
  • Secret Celebrity Renovation returns July 28
  • the new “musical game show” Superfan starts Aug. 9.

For Big Brother 25, CBS promises that there will be all new houseguests (yay) and we can “Expect the unexpected this summer” (sigh).

The press release also says this will be “a season full of twists and turns and throwbacks to the last 24 seasons”, which I guess is an acknowledgement that they’ve truly run out of ideas, though we’ve known that for years.

The real difference this year will be a delay in the show’s premiere.

A person in a red dress holding a card, standing in front of a large LED wall with swirling pale blue characters
Julie Chen Moonves on the set of Big Brother 24 during its 2022 finale (Image from Big Brother via CBS)

In recent years, Big Brother has premiered the first week in July, while it started in late June in earlier years.

This year, CBS is holding the season for a month, premiering Big Brother 25 on Aug. 2.

That’s a very similar start to 2020, when the global pandemic delayed production and the season premiered Aug. 5, 2020.

That season ended three days before Halloween. With a Big Brother season typically lasting about 2.5 months, we’ll have Big Brother at least through mid-October.

What’s causing the delay this year? The WGA’s strike—which may soon be followed by both actors and directors going on strike, too.

The WGA strike will, at the very least, delay production on fall scripted television, if not make it outright impossible to get new and returning shows on the air. That’s why ABC announced a fall schedule full of reality TV.

Big Brother’s schedule—how will it affect Survivor & TAR?

Survivor and Amazing Race logos

By delaying Big Brother, CBS gives itself more unscripted content in the fall. But will that conflict with its other unscripted shows, Survivor and The Amazing Race?

CBS has given Big Brother its usual timeslots:

  • Sundays at 8
  • Wednesdays at 8
  • Thursdays at 9, the live elimination

However, CBS previously announced that both Survivor 45 and The Amazing Race will be paired together on Wednesday nights this fall, and expanded to 90 minutes each. That will fill CBS’s entire three-hour prime-time block on Wednesday.

What CBS did not announce is when Survivor and The Amazing Race will actually premiere. Typically, it’s in mid to late September, but that’ll only be six weeks in to Big Brother 25.

That means the Wednesdays at 8 timeslot will likely change. That seems like the most-likely outcome, though CBS could do something more dramatic, such as holding Survivor and Amazing Race for later in the fall, or shortening Big Brother’s season.

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About the author

  • Andy Dehnart

    Andy Dehnart is the creator of reality blurred and a writer and teacher who obsessively and critically covers reality TV and unscripted entertainment, focusing on how it’s made and what it means.

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Happy discussing!


Wednesday 24th of May 2023

Why is it only a month?

philip B

Wednesday 24th of May 2023

well they could air BB on Tue Thur and Sun like they once did.

Jeff P

Tuesday 23rd of May 2023

The real question is, when does Tough as Nails return?!

Andy Dehnart

Wednesday 24th of May 2023

They're likely holding it to fill a slot in the fall that would have been filled with a scripted show, but as of right now, don't want to admit that like ABC did.