Channel 5 boss defends Big Brother 2014 ratings

17 comments - Posted on September 2 2014 at 01:22am

Big Brother 2014: Power Trip generic

Channel 5 executive Ben Frow has defended the ratings performance of Big Brother 2014: Power Trip, claiming he doesn’t want it to be the “number one” programme.

This year’s series was the lowest rating ever, with a consolidated average of 1.57million viewers – down 330,000 on the previous run.

However, Frow – the broadcaster’s current director of programmes – has acknowledged the odds were against the show this year, partly thanks to competition from sporting events such as the FIFA World Cup and the Commonwealth Games.

Speaking at the Edinburgh International Television Festival a week ago, the 53-year-old said: “We knew this summer was gonna be tough, we were up against all that sport, it’s actually done remarkably well I think.

“When I looked at our ratings report for, I think it was last week or the week before, Big Brother was the fourth most popular programme. That’s how I want it. I don’t want Big Brother to be number one.”

Frow went on to echo his comments from the same event last year, noting that he’s cautious of becoming over-reliant on the fifteen-year-old reality format.

“I always said Big Brother is a very important piece for us, and I love Big Brother – you can play it in various different ways. But if you are overreliant on Big Brother, when it does fall down – and one day it will decline further – the whole lot falls down around it.

“I want to have shows I can play throughout the year that do as well, if not better than Big Brother, and those are the shows we’re creating at the moment, like Benefits Britain.”

In the same interview, Frow admitted that C5 is lacking in entertainment, with Big Brother remaining its only major success in the genre.

He described his most recent attempt at launching a new entertainment show – dating contest Stand By Your Man – as a “what was I thinking moment”.

Frow has confirmed that he expects Big Brother to remain on Channel 5 in 2015 – but has yet to renew the rights, which expire later this year.

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17 comments on this article

  1. Sam2 says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    “I don’t want Big Brother to be number one.”

    Well, they’re certainly doing a good job of ensuring that! BB15 was such a bad series I just couldn’t be bothered with it anymore and gave up on it half way through. And to be honest I’m not far off doing the same with this CBB. If I’m feeling this as a BB fan, then surely there must be other viewers feeling the same way?

    It’s just not the show I used to love watching anymore, the show I couldn’t get enough of, and makes me wonder whether January’s epic CBB was just a one-off fluke and in reality they just got lucky with exceptionally good housemates.

    So they can make all the excuses they want in order to push the blame elsewhere and justify their salaries, but the fact is BBUK is just unengaging now. Whether it’s due to too low a budget I don’t know, but something needs to change and it’s not the core concept of Big Brother, because that I still love.

    Still, only a week to go until a proper Big Brother starts. :happy:

  2. jennyjuniper says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    Of course Ben Frow wants it to be number one. That was the stupidest statement ever that he gave.
    The reason it will never be number one again is that channel 5 have taken a really good show and put an infantile production team in charge, who think it’s great entertainment to encourage bullying. To punish some and not others and to take the fundemtal concept of BB and throw it out the window.
    If it moves to another channel, I may watch again, but not while this lot are in charge.

  3. Janice’s says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    Well Mr Frow if you don’t want to try why bother!
    Great motto for life,I don’t want to do my best.

  4. Janice’s says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    Commonwealth Games? Sport? Nothing to do with viewers actually switching off due to what was actually going on in the BB House? Or the manipulation and favouritism of the producers?
    I am not going to bother at all next year.

  5. Yogi6 says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    Thats becos the previous BB series with Helen winning was absolutely shit! Sorry, much prefer celeb BB….

  6. Janice’s says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    The show at present feels a bit scripted! In this series for example why were Audley and James chosen to go into the dome and then get immunity. Without good reason for choosing them then it’s unfair. I’m still trying to work out why they needed two teams :doh: @Sam2

  7. jennyjuniper says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    Exactly Janice. And once they had done that, why not do as they said they would and leave them there until one gave in. A few hours was pathetic for such a task. Well pathetic in general.

  8. James says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    Ben Frow is ruining the show for me.
    He has far too much involvement.
    (not to mention an EX employee from BOTS told me their is a constant battle between him and the producers of the show)

  9. jennyjuniper says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    Speaking of Bots. Although I don’t watch it anymore, some others have mentioned that they are showing extraordinary favouritism towards James. Emma and Rylan, panel and sheep (sorry audience) all praising him to the skies. WHY!!
    Is it because they are told to? For what reason? They surely can’t hope to change public opinion against this pathetic excuse for a human being at this late stage. :doh:

  10. Janice’s says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    Hi Jenny,I haven’t watched for a few nights but Louisa is not ,definitely not a fan of James. She says many times that he is horrid and she hates him! I would say. That they are bug fans of Dee though.@jennyjuniper

  11. Janice’s says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    :doh: just realised Mr Frow sees Benefits Britain as flagship show and she was on benefits street or something like that. IT all slots into place. And the winner is……..

  12. Janice’s says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    That was a reply to Jenny about Dee oops!

  13. Stuart says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    to be fair though, as much as I love Louisa, she switched in the civilian series rather suspiciously. Hated Helen for 8 weeks, and then by final night decided she wanted her to win. A tad confusing. wouldn’t surprise me if she was told to do the same here.

  14. Janice’s says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    I can’t stand Louisa really but felt I should say what I’d seen for balance.
    Anyone like to wager that Dee will win this show while the longer she is in there the more I turn against her!

  15. Maria Williams says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !

    Am enjoying CBB this time, good interesting mix of characters, but did not like BB at all this year, thought the result was fixed. Helen Wood did not deserve to win at all.

  16. John Kane says:
    Tue 02 Sep Reply !


  17. christine whitcombe says:
    Fri 05 Sep Reply !

    i actually loved the summer BB,,did not agree helen having ticket to final but she made it interesting viewing..finding the celebrity series a bit boring,not much happening unless they have a go at gary..and cant stand dee..obvious she will be in final 2

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