best Big Brother housemates

From Nikki Grahame to Alison Hammond: Here are the most iconic Big Brother housemates ever

Never forget Michelle Bass singing Pie Jesu


Big Brother is only iconic because of the housemates it’s given us. Sure, the format is legendary – but it’s these real, ordinary people who influenced pop culture and end up quoted by endless gays on Twitter to this day. With Big Brother making its triumphant return in 2023, I’ve rounded up my top 24 housemates that I think and laugh about the most. This is certainly not everyone who ever made an impact on the show – this article would be never-ending if so – but here’s 24 of the best and most iconic Big Brother housemates that deserved a mention!

Nick (aka NASTY NICK)

It’s laughable now how dramatic the scenes were when eventual first ever winner of Big Brother, Craig, confronted Nick around the table with their fellow housemates and exposed the latter for passing notes and trying to influence nominations – but people at the time and the press acted like it was the most disgraceful thing to ever happen. Nick was playing the game, had smuggled paper and a pen in and was being a master game player. Everyone acted like he was an international supervillain.

SO iconic. Changed TV. Was hated by the public for years until TV moved on, got more brutal and we all reflected on him as a pioneer.

Brian Dowling

Look, he was a crap presenter and no Davina or Emma – but it’s important to remember that Brian WAS a great housemate. He won season two AND Ultimate Big Brother and became the first ever gay man to win the show. Which was amazing to watch as a young gay!

Jade Goody

One watch of the heartbreaking documentary about Jade Goody’s life shows she had a tumultuous time. Jade is in many ways the definitive Big Brother housemate ever. If you’ve never watched it before, watch it.

Alison Hammond

The iconic, incomparable, national treasure that is Alison Hammond first came to us via Big Brother. For that, we are not worthy. Here she is breaking a table by accident.

Nadia Almada

best Big Brother housemates

A trans woman winning Big Brother in the early 00s? Absolutely groundbreaking.

Michelle Bass

Presented truly without comment. “Agnes Day”.

Makosi Musambasi

An absolutely legendary housemate who’s got so many little iconic moments, which is what makes the best Big Brother housemates in my opinion. I love when she struts across the kitchen. I love the infamous hot tub antics. But most of all, I love the timeless line: “Nobody slags Abi Titmuss off, because I love her.” Scripture.

Kinga

Best remembered for, erm, THAT bottle incident. But not by me. I remember her best for singing Fighter by Christina Aguilera with Craig and going for it like she was about to be evicted to a record deal from SyCo.

Craig and Anthony

One of the most chaotic platonic love stories I’ve ever witness on TV. A double act for the ages.

Aisleyne

One of the most enduringly best Big Brother housemates – a good all round person and some iconic quotes. You better know yourself! Also love that her autobiography is titled “Aisleyne: Surviving Guns, Gangs and Glamour” with a quote from Amy Winehouse saying “Women like Aisleyne make the world go round, she’s a lioness.” Screaming.

Nikki Grahame

Of everyone on this list of best Big Brother housemates, it is the late Nikki Grahame who will be remembered forever. She is the most quotable, the most loving and her untimely death is devastating. Just one watch of her best bits shows you how special she was.

Charley and Chanelle (or, Charley VS Chanelle)

Charley and Chanelle are iconic housemates in their own right, but they have come as a pair here purely for the fact they managed to give us a near 10 minute argument about Rihanna’s age.

Mario and Lisa

Lisa and Mario were the first ever couple to enter the Big Brother house, and although they’ve since split, we did get their iconic proposal and that cursed time when they dirty talked with biscuits.

Corin

Perhaps I’m bias because she’s from Stockport like me, but Corin describing the outfit she could get for £6 AKA the same price as mouthwash in the Big Brother house is so timeless. 50p for a packet of sweets on’t way ‘ome!

Gina Rio

Our rich icon!

Jackie Travers

I love that every year there’s a middle aged icon that the gays welcome into their lives. None more so than Jackie THEE Travers, whose video of her dancing gets an edit every two months. Icon.

Jayne Connery

Jayne Connery had the miraculous ability to make later years of Big Brother feel like the glory days. If she’d been on a Channel 4 season, she’d widely be known as one of the best Big Brother housemates ever. She is SO funny. The sponge knocking her out? The “I’m bored shitless?” The “I would annihilate you on the outside”? I’m crying watching her best bits.

ITV, if you cast people like the 24 here, I will die happy.

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