Saturday, December 18, 2004

Big Brother Croatia Update: Done Deal

Unless something really unpredictable happens in next few days, the outcome of Big Brother show is going to be as predictable as the actual final four of contestants. Judging by nearly all polls, Saša (Sasa), who was absolute favourite from the start, enjoys comfortable support of 60 % of potential voters. Having wife and two children proved to be decisive factor, and even the potential damaging media discovery of huge debts proved to be a blessing for Saša. Many of his fans are additionally motivated to vote for him in order to save him from debt collectors. Show ending on Boxing Day, in the atmosphere of Christmas holidays, also works nicely in Saša's favour.

Chances of Zdravko, who was supposed to give Saša a run for his money, look much slimmer than anyone could have imagined only few weeks ago. Last night his worried face told everything when he had listened to the cheering of Saša's fans. Teenybopper voters, which were supposed to bring him easy victory – and were prime reason why he hasn't been nominated for weeks – might not have any impact.

At the same time, chances for Alen improved and he now, according to some polls, has second position – although it is only a third of Saša's support. Many see Alen as the show's only remaining clown – a replacement for Krešo (Kreso) who was seen as the major favourite at the start. Others are impressed with the way he doesn't hide emotions. On the other hand, Alen didn't make himself a lot of favours by confessing certain things in his recent discussions with Marina. He claims that he didn't applied to Big Brother for money; he was more interested in fame and opportunity to "pick hot girls". His father Nikola Macinić (Nikola Macinic) also didn't help his son's chances when he claimed that Alen, if he wins, will spend the grand prize in less than a month.

That leaves Marina who could prove to be the real dark horse of the final stage. Although Marina gained certain antipathy as "cold and calculated manipulator of poor ignorant Alen", many others are impressed with the strength of her character, discipline and lack of annoying habits that had brought public antipathy to other female housemates. Another thing that plays in Marina's favour is the fact she, to a certain degree, shares some of Saša's financial problems while, at the same time, represents anti-thesis of his lifestyle. In other words, potential voters who can't stand Saša are most likely to express their displeasure by voting for Marina. Fans of the evicted housemates may also chose Marina as a protest vote. Marina doesn't seem to have any hopes of winning the grand prize and that reflects in a way she stopped worrying about the way public saw her. In her more recent conversations with housemates, she said that she was worried about lectures she might get from her sister Paola.

Marina's status of dark horse was partially validated by T-Com's poll which gives her around 25 % and puts her in second place. Those numbers, however, should be taken with a grain of salt – for the most of the night Marina was leading that poll. There is good reason to believe that such numbers were result of vote stuffing.

In the meantime, RTL Televizija must find some way to struggle with boredom that arose from the situation. Viewers may see some familiar and repetitive pattern emerging – Saša (Sasa) and Zdravko isolating themselves from Alen and Marina, Marina trying to re-define "relationship" into friendship, Alen verbally agreeing with her and then acting like there is something more. Only the regular supply alcohol with the consequent reappearance of love triangle might spark things up. RTL Televizija might also bring another guest, but it is unlikely that it would create ratings as spectacular as those one week ago.

While the "relationship" between Alen and Marina is approaching its inevitable end, RTL Televizija tries to compensate that with the heavy coverage of another, this one outside House. Valentina Tasić (Valentina Tasic), ex-housemate known for her ambition to host a television talk show, is recently been seen in "romantic" company of the show's host Neno Pavinčić (Neno Pavincic). Two of them shared the passionate kiss minutes after Valentina's eviction and nowadays whenevrr Valentina appears before RTL Televizija cameras, Pavinčić is nearby. Many think that this "romance" is as real as the one within the House.


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