Why Has ‘Big Brother’ Never Received Any Emmy Nominations?

Big Brother has been a staple of reality television since the early 2000s, giving viewers hundreds of Houseguests to love, hate, or hate to love and countless hours of classic drama.

However, unlike its neighboring CBS shows Survivor and The Amazing Race, the reality show cannot seem to receive one Emmy nomination. Why? Keep reading to find out.

Big Brother Emmy
Julie Chen Moonves | Robert Voets/CBS via Getty Images

What is ‘Big Brother’ about?

Sixteen Houseguests enter a house where they are surveilled 24/7 to compete against each other in the hopes of winning $500,000. The show airs three times a week and usually follows the same format: Sundays are Head of Household competitions where the winner is safe for the week and choose two people for eviction.

On Wednesdays, the two nominees, the Head of Household, and three randomly selected Houseguests play for the Power of Veto where the winner can save a nominee from eviction. If someone is taken off the block, the Head of Household then must choose another person to take their place.

Then, Thursdays are the Live Eviction where all the Houseguests, except those on the block and the Head of Household, must vote for who they want to evict.

The first five evicted Houseguests head home, but the next eight who are voted out go to the Jury House where they remain until the competition is over.

Finally, the Jurors come back on finale night and cast their vote on who they want to win. While the Houseguests live in the Big Brother house, their every move and conversation is caught on Live Feeds for viewers at home to watch on CBS All Access.

Why has ‘Big Brother’ never received an Emmy nomination?

It’s not clear why the CBS reality television show has never gotten an Emmy nod, especially as neighboring shows Survivor and The Amazing Race have received several accolades.

The premise to all three series are similar with relatively unknown people competing against one another for a cash prize. Therefore, it should be nominated in the Outstanding Competition Program, Host for a Reality or Competition Program, Unstructured Program, or even Outstanding Cinematography for a Reality Program category.

Even though Big Brother has dropped in viewership, they continue to pull in at least 4 million live viewers and is consistently ranked as one of the most-watched shows during their time slot.

Additionally, there are several accounts on every social media platform dedicated to Big Brother watchers who have thousands of members each. Therefore, the engagement with their direct viewers is extremely high.

However, people believe the reality show does not receive any Emmy love because of the racist, sometimes homophobic, and problematic behavior of the contestants.

Even though CBS displays a disclosure that they are not responsible for what the Houseguests say on the Live Feeds, viewers still hold the network accountable, especially when they can use that moment to educate the Houseguests.

While host Julie Chen Moonves has confronted former contestants including BB15 Aaryn Gries and BB21 Jack Matthews about some of the questionable things they’ve said, several comments went unchallenged.

Perhaps the Television Academy would think rewarding the television show with an Emmy would encourage more irresponsible behavior from the guests. To see who takes home an award, watch the Emmys Ceremony Sunday, September 22 at 8 p.m. EST on FOX.