The Insider

Jul 31, 2006  •  Post A Comment

It turns out that “Big Brother Slop” isn’t quite as cruel and inhuman a punishment as it appears for losers of the food competitions on “Big Brother: All-Stars.”

It’s a just-add-water, nutritionally fortified porridge mix available commercially by the bucket. It has a variety of textures from the grain tossed into the base that’s powdery until moistened.

Since it was introduced in rubber rat-filled troughs during a messy competition, one-half of the house has had to live on nothing but “Big Brother Slop” for a week, in which stomachs growled and houseguests made ugly faces and very unattractive noises as they passed gas.

The always sartorially suspect “Chicken George” Boswell wore a T-shirt emblazoned with “Mr. Fart” during the live eviction ceremony last Thursday on CBS.

“It’s a lot of fiber,” “Big Brother” executive producer Alison Grodner conceded last week to The Insider, a total fool for “Big Brother.”

“I ate it for a meal. We all did around here before it got to them,” Ms. Grodner said. She confessed she got a little gas, “so I can only imagine it after eating it for a week.”

It was Ms. Grodner who cooked up the idea to substitute slop for the traditional diet of peanut butter-and-jelly sandwiches that awaits losers in the competitions that determine what the houseguests will eat for the next week.

With the house filled with all-stars from previous “Big Brother” seasons, it was time for a change and a bigger challenge for the houseguests to endure.

“It had to be tasteless and colorless. It’s really bland, but because it’s got protein it’s got a bit of an aluminum taste,” the executive producer said.

Here’s the complete list of ingredients: Natural oats, proprietary blend of whey protein concentrate, soy protein isolate, wheat protein isolate, milk protein isolate, natural and artificial flavors, vitamins and minerals (vitamin A palmitate, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, pyridoxine hydrochloride, cyanocobalamin, vitamin D3, alpha tocopherol, niacin, biotin, pantothenic acid, calcium carbonate, magnesium oxide, zinc oxide, copper gluconate, manganese sulfate, ferrous sulfate, folic acid, potassium iodide), cellulose gum, salt and acesulfame potassium.

Of course, the condemned houseguests are not allowed to mix any food into the slop, only a long list of condiments, which they are warned will not be replenished if they run out before the Dickensian week is up: balsamic vinegar, olive oil, red wine vinegar, rice vinegar, vegetable oil, hot sauce, ketchup, BBQ sauce, mayonnaise, mustard, pickles, relish, salsa, soy sauce, steak sauce, Worcestershire sauce, honey, black pepper, garlic salt, crushed red pepper, salt, vanilla, basil, bay leaves, cinnamon, leaf oregano, paprika, parsley, rosemary, brown sugar, artificial sweetener, powdered creamer, white sugar, tea and protein powder.

Who else but The Insider would dig up this stuff for you?

“Chicken George has been in there whipping up quite a few different items. He’s been deep-frying it, making it into crackers and biscuits. He’s trying. He’s trying hard,” Ms. Grodner said.

Chicken George needs to. George, who was in “BB1,” chose to live on slop only for as long as he remains in the house in order to win the “Power of Golden Veto” and foil head-of-household James Rhines’ grand plan to evict him.

The Insider e-mailed questions to the houseguests about how bad the slop is. Four responded (via a representative of the show) and vowed they would never be able to look at, much less eat, oatmeal again.

Marcellas Reynolds (“BB3”) said the only way to make it edible is to burn it. Adding sugar and flavored protein powder will make it “kind of tolerable,” said Howie Gordon (“BB6”). “It tastes like cardboard … nothing makes it taste better,” said Janelle Pierzina (“BB6”).

Like the others, Danielle Reyes (“BB3”) said she longs for the once-maligned PB&J. “You try to make slop cookies hoping that it will help, but it doesn’t. You try slop chips, hoping it will taste like a chip, but it doesn’t.”

If you’d like to know what each would give up to return to PB&J, e-mail The Insider’s alter ego at mgreppi@tvweek.com. It’s not that the answers are so taboo-especially to “BB: All-Stars” fans. It’s that The Insider has run out of room.