With no winner announced as Campaign was going to press, ratings were expected to get even higher for the grand finale. Everyone is glued to their screens, except the big bosses at TV2 who are too busy working out their bonuses: Big Brother achieved 3.4 times the average rating for TV2.
2. PORTUGAL BIG BROTHER FAMOSOS 2 AVERAGE TVR: 14 CHANNEL: TV1 Sept - Nov 2002
Celebrity Big Brother, aka Big Brother Famosos, hit Portugal to huge fanfare and massive ratings earlier this year. A second series of Famosos has just begun. You can only imagine the horror of a Portuguese Goldie and the lurid appeal of an ever- flatulent Les Dennis from Lisbon.
3. ITALY GRANDE FRATELLO AVERAGE TVR: 14 CHANNEL: CANALE 5 Sept - Dec 2001
The second series of Big Brother even performed well against Saranno Famosi, the Italian version of Fame Academy. Both were broadcast on Mediaset channels, so were nice earners for Mediaset's owner and Italy's prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi.
4. NORWAY BIG BROTHER AVERAGE TVR: 8 CHANNEL: TV NORGE Feb - June 2002
Veronica romped home to walk off with the big cash prize in the Norwegian Big Brother. Her life motto is do unto others what you would have them do to you. So she'll be buying some serious camera equipment in the January sales then.
5. SPAIN GRAN HERMANO AVERAGE TVR: 7 CHANNEL: T5 Oct - Nov 2002
Steam 'n' sauce in the Spanish Big Brother from Nacho, a 25-year old PR consultant from Madrid, and Desi, a blonde goddess. Aaah. True love strikes, just like Helen and Paul.
6. FRANCE LOFT STORY AVERAGE TVR: 6 CHANNEL: M6 April - July 2002
With their heritage of liberte, egalite, fraternite, it's hardly surprising that so many French disapprove of Loft Story which imprisons, encourages hierarchy and is bound to end up with at least one person in tears.
7. BIG BROTHER VIP MEXICO AVERAGE TVR: 5 CHANNEL: C2/5 NAC March - June 2002
Galilea stormed to victory with a popularity rating of 31 per cent in Big Brother in Mexico, beating off competition from the luscious Lorena who scored a miserly 0 per cent. So looks ain't everything after all.
8. NETHERLANDS BIG BROTHER AVERAGE TVR: 4 CHANNEL: YORIN Sept - Dec 2002
Here Big Brother scores below the average TVR for Yorin. So viewer fatigue with reality TV has swept the nation. Unsurprising, though, when you learn that under discussion for next year is a reality show where female professionals discuss life and love.
9. US BIG BROTHER AVERAGE TVR: 3 CHANNEL: CBS July - Sept 2002
Not as big as Survivor in the US, but still a respectable ratings winner. The familiar pattern among the contestants was: recriminations, tears, hugs, repeat to fade. When winning contestant Lisa was asked for her favourite memory, she said: "Watching her own growth experience as a person." Pass the sick bucket.
10. GERMANY BIG BROTHER AVERAGE TVR: 2 CHANNEL: RTL/RTL2 Jan - May 2001
The lowest TVR of all the Big Brothers. Have the Germans come round to their senses before the rest of us?
Thanks to IM Futures for providing TVRs.
This article was first published on Campaign