‘Selling the Big Easy’: Fans are Torn Over Brittany’s Hosting

HGTV is known for its compulsively watchable lineup of shows. Whether it’s the renovation adventures of Flip or Flop or the real estate drama of House Hunters, people continue to be riveted to the network’s offering of shows. 

This year, HGTV added a new show to its roster. Selling the Big Easy is set in New Orleans, and it has a little different feel to it and a unique host. But viewers can’t quite decide how they feel about her just yet. 

Balcony of a house, French Quarter, New Orleans
French Quarter, New Orleans, Louisiana, | DeAgostini/Getty Images

‘Selling the Big Easy’

The show debuted in September, and it follows Brittany Picolo-Ramos as she works the New Orleans real estate scene. She walks her clients through the process of selecting a home, pointing out the unique features and locations of the area. She also helps clients who are selling their properties to get top dollar by staging their homes. 

As she told The Advocate, “We did have a home in the French Quarter that was in the million-plus market and had been on the market for a long time. We came in, staged it, and sold it for $400,000 more than the original price.”

The pilot for the show was filmed in 2018, but they didn’t start filming for this season until January. Naturally, coronavirus (COVID-19) forced a shutdown in March, but they got back to work in June. Since then, they’ve been back at work, letting viewers feast their eyes on gorgeous New Orleans architecture and scenery. And they’re also getting to know Picolo-Ramos.

Who is Brittany Picolo-Ramos?

RELATED: ‘House Hunters’: Do the Realtors On the Show Get Paid?

The animated host’s knowledge of the area is no accident. She was born and raised in New Orleans, and she exudes the particularly feisty Southern charm of the region. She landed in real estate after a back injury ended her job at a cell phone company. A friend who sells real estate called her, offering to get her involved in selling skincare products, but Picolo-Ramos knew that selling houses was her next adventure. 

When she’d been in the business for a while, she got a call, telling her that HGTV was interested in filming one of her listings for a show about home staging. She showed up to watch the shooting and started chatting with the executive producers about her hometown, offering suggestions for restaurants.

“I love to make people laugh, so I was joking around with them and one of the producers said, ‘Oh, you’re so funny!’ and I replied, ‘I know, I should have my own show!’ And she agreed! She made a few calls and here we are!” Picolo-Ramos is definitely the kind of person who makes an immediate impression on people. Viewers just can’t quite agree on if they love her or not. 

Viewers love her — or don’t

In a recent discussion on Reddit, commenters got into the subject of Picolo-Ramos, and opinions were certainly mixed. 

The original poster had very strong feelings about Picolo-Ramos, none of them positive. “I have been a very committed and dedicated fan of HGTV … Until they lowered their standards by signing on the most annoying and literally stupidest realtor EVER — Brittany, or whatever her name is,” they wrote. “PLEASE SHUT HER DOWN SO SHE STOPS THINKING THAT SHE’S OK….”

Not everyone felt the same way.

“Our family has enjoyed it and really liked that she’s not ‘polished’ or this super slick realtor that gives you an icky vibe. She feels real and yes, dorky, but that’s a feature, not a drawback,” one viewer said. “And quite honestly, I really wonder if she’s so highly criticized on this subreddit because she is very different for HGTV: she’s not whisper-thin, she’s got a different sense of humor and she shows that she’s part of a team and honors that instead of pretending she does it all on her own.”

Not everyone was convinced, though. “She tries to be quirky or something but it really comes across as if she developed her entire personality from joke son the internet.”

But those who liked her weren’t going to be talked out of it. “I love her sense of humor and I love her show,” a fan insisted. “The homes are stunning and she really enjoys showing off the beauty of her city. “

Clearly, Picolo-Ramos is still finding her audience, and has already won over many fans. In the sometimes dramatic world of HGTV, it seems like a safe bet that there are enough viewers who will enjoy her unique style.