Becoming a Big Brother runner-up means finishing in second place and taking home a nice cash prize.
Even though the second-place finisher doesn’t walk away with the $500,000 or $750,000 prize that the winner receives, they still get a nice chunk of change for putting in the work during a summer season.
And anyone who has made it to the jury vote is good at playing Big Brother, even though there are many different reasons why they might have made the final two.
It takes a lot to make it to the final two, including some luck, at least a few good allies and being good in at least one of the big facets of the game.
Sometimes, the best player on a particular cast doesn’t even win, as has been the case in more than a few seasons over the past 10 years.
But, outlasting the competition is really important to having success on the show.
Social game vs. physical game
Some houseguests are really, really good at challenges, but come up short in the social aspect of playing Big Brother.
And other times, some houseguests can survive on their social game alone, despite being really, really bad at the challenges.
One of the keys to surviving an entire summer is being a player that can find the balance in those styles, while also making sure to not be too much of a threat to keep around.
And no, the best player in a given season might not even make it to the end, especially with twists, grudges, and other things getting in the way.
Examples of Big Brother players with different styles
On Big Brother 23, Derek Frazier was horrible when it came to playing challenges, but he found ways to befriend people that helped him make it to the final two. He had no shot of beating Xavier Prather, since Xavier played a much better all-around game, but Derek was still good at playing Big Brother, despite possibly losing more challenges than anyone in recent memory.
Then, on Big Brother 24, Michael Bruner proved that he is one of the best houseguests of all time when it comes to winning challenges. But his social game let Michael down as he found himself on an island later in the season.
There are a lot of additional examples of players doing some things really well, but coming up short in other areas of the game. Paul Abrahamian from BB18 and BB19 was good at competitions and had a really strong social game early on, but his jury management landed him as the runner-up twice.
Making it to the final two means that you were a good Big Brother player that season; it doesn’t mean the player was well-liked by the fans, that they will have a lasting legacy, or that they deserved to win.
But, making it to the end does mean they were good at playing Big Brother.
More news from Big Brother
Recently, Xavier Prather shared some serious injuries that he is dealing with. It will certainly impact which reality shows he appears on next.
Big Brother 20 runner-up Tyler Crispen also revealed the battle with depression that he has been going through.
Big Brother 25 airs in Summer 2023 on CBS.