3rd October, 2021
By Nehru Odeh
Tonight is the night. After 12 weeks of romance, fun, partying, games, tasks, evictions, strikes, tension and heart breaks, the highly addictive BBNaija reality show will end tonight.
End tonight? Yes. Still, the fans have decided, by virtue of their votes, who of the six finalists- Whitemoney, Liquorose, Pere, Emmanuel, Angel and Cross – will win the N90 million prize.
Though the housemates have won various prizes performing their various tasks and become millionaires, though they have each won many hearts and broken some too both within and outside the house, though they have become celebrities on a platter of the reality show, the ultimate prize will be won and lost tonight.
Still, the question tugging at everyone’s mind is: of the remaining six finalists who goes home with the prize tonight?
While the six finalists had equal chances of winning the prize during the 12 weeks that the reality show lasted, only one will win it tonight. What are their chances? What strategies did they have (if they ever had) and did it work for them?
The truth is, the six finalists had 12 weeks not only to win the hearts of their fellow housemates but also of the fans. The fact they survived till this moment, while the rest 20 fell by the wayside attests to the fact that their game plans worked. But how far is it going to carry them?
The strategies of the six finalists and their chances
Cross is the jolly good fellow, the friend of virtually all the housemates in the house. And that is what has been working for him. Luck is also on his side too, which showed when Emmanuel used his veto power to nominate him as Deputy Head of House last week and saved him from possible eviction. Though many vilify Cross for his playboy persona – and he lost may potential lovers in the house – that he is among the six finalist is no fluke at all; though not many gave him a chance. Does he have any chance to win the highly coveted prize? The answer is no. Reason: He failed to build a huge, fanatical fan base that could have made him one of the favourites. The fans have decided. And that is the reason this year’s prize will eluded him.
Angel is the bohemian in the house, the housemate with an artistic spirit, the lady who right from the outset created a freaky persona and stuck with it till the end. That worked for her because many fans look forward to seeing her half-nude persona everyday. Still, aside from that bad girl figure she has portrayed, she shows remarkable intelligence which endears her to many both within and outside the house. Cross always say that everything that she does is strategic. Did that strategy work? Yes. But will she win the prize? No. Reason: Like Cross who she is very close to in the house, she failed to build a huge, fanatical fan base, a fan base that was ready to stick its neck for her.
Emmanuel is the gentleman of the house, the fine boy with no pimples, though can be sometimes sneaky in his dealings with Liquorose. No wonder he stole Liquorose’s heart and got her attention all through the show. That is also his strategy. And it worked for him because he rode on the back of Liquorose to garner support and votes from the fans. Many of Liquorose’s fans voted to save him anytime he was up for eviction. Still, his romance with Liquorose is also his undoing. He got Liquorose but lost the fans. He concentrated on Liquorose and failed to give the fans content. He failed to build a strong fan base that he could call his own. Though luck was also on his side, which showed when he won the Head of House twice and the veto power that eventually saved him. The fan base he built is Emmarose, whose chief architect is Liquorose. Emmanuel’s fan base was built on quicksand and therefore superficial and that is the reason it cannot carry him far. Did he win Liquorose’s heart? Yes. But will he win the prize tonight? The answer is an emphatic no
Fondly called The General by his teeming fans, Pere has the bragging right of being the only housemates who entered the house as a wild card and ended up being one of the finalists. That is no mean feat and it deserves commendation. Pere, throughout his stay in the house, has succeeded in portraying himself as a smart, no-nonsense dude, coupled with the fact that he was once a US marine.
That smart, no-nonsense persona, which critics tended to see as dictatorial, is a strategy that has worked for him. No wonder he has endeared himself to the fans and survived till the end. Several times, Pere betrayed his smartness by quickly unravelling puzzles. He it was who said Big Brother was pulling a prank when Nini disappeared. He was also the one who caught Nini when she returned to the house after her disappearance.
Though Pere is one of the favourites to win this show, as he has a huge fanatical fan base, he wil not win the prize tonight. Though he has a huge fan base and a very active management team, he picked up as a strong contestant very late.
The Queen of Hearts, Liquorose is not just one of the favourites to win the prize but a very strong contender at that. Not only does she have a very huge fan base that she started building right from the outset, what with her dancing skills, cool mien and beauty. And the fact that she is a video vixen who has featured in many famous artistes’ visuals has really endeared her to her fans. Still, one thing that cannot be taken away from her is the huge support she enjoys across the African continent, especially in Ghana and South Africa. When one adds the support she enjoyed across the continent and her teeming fans in Nigeria, Liquorose may end up among the last two contestants. But will she win the prize? No. I see her becoming first runner up. Still, the fight is between her and Whitemoney. Anything could happen.
The man of the people, Whitemoney has succeeded in portraying himself as a street guy who had gone through hell. He had done all kinds of odd jobs, even sleeping under the bridge at Ojuelegba with the Chairman of agberos (touts). The story of the hard life he led has endeared him to the fans right from the outside. Many do not only relate with him but they see him as one of their own. He also has the uncanny ability to garner support from the poor and the rich and celebrities. As a result, many celebrities are rooting for him.
Another strategy that has worked for him is his selfless service at the kitchen, where he is charge of cooking and other culinary duties. Pere quickly noticed it and seeing him as a strong competitor and threat, made sure he (Whitemoney) relinquished his culinary duties when he was Head of House. But that backfired because the housemates, who had problems eating their meals, rallied around Whitemoney. Whitemoney’s strategy in the kitchen has not only worked but has also endeared him to his teeming fans.
Here are the top three contenders