There have been many opinions and arguments about BBNaija, especially amongst Christians. Some of these discussions have perched on one extreme or the other. There is a need for a balance perception, which only comes by the truth. There is only one truth, the truth has no variance. We live in a world where everything has become relative and there are absolute standards, but this is not coherent with the nature of God. Things are either good or they are bad. Watch this – I offer you a healthy bowl of jollof rice with a big chicken lap and I garnish it with fried plantain and salad, you are salivating. I immediately inform you that “oh I mixed the water I used in cooking every of those food items with a little of goat dung, a little of rat dung and a little of cockroach urine.” Would you still salivate for the ‘healthy’ meal? Falsehood is not the total absence of truth, it is sometimes 99% truth mixed with 1% lie. Truth is absolute (100%).
Some persons have consciously decided not to recognize that BBNaija is another form of entertainment like watching a movie, in fact, we could liken it to a serial movie that takes you 3 months to complete. It is like a football match guys crave for, it is like any other form of entertainment. But is not as any other form of entertainment. According to a Dictionary (wordweb), entertainment is an activity that is diverting and holds the attention, hence by the effect this program has on its viewers it can be called an entertaining program. Just to note, I watched BBNaija. Any point I make is based on my judgement as a direct viewer I won’t say anything based on hearsays or sentimental judgement passed by other people. While we have agreed that BBNaija is an entertainment program, I will proceed to say that it can’t be fully placed in the category of every other entertainment program. Why?
BBNaija is a rather different form of entertainment. It poses people’s actual lives as a stage drama meant to be watched and evoke objective reactions from the audience. The housemates are like pawns in the hands of Big Brother and whoever the sponsors are. People pause their actual lives and decide to camp in a place for thee months, with their lives fully televised. This even violates the very tenets of humanity. Their privacy is taken away, even in sleep. Their lives are scheduled, when to wake up, go to the gym, eat, arena games and so on. Big Brother literally becomes their ‘god’ for three months. One of the attributes that makes God God is his choice of granting freewill to man. The housemates were limited in what they could do. The house was structured in a way that the Christian life was not encouraged, they neither had an in-house church nor a mosque because the god was ‘Big Brother;. Big brother, the god that is always watching, the omnipresent one, all-knowing, who knows everything and has the final say. No secrets are hidden from him. Their lives were just a game of tactfully competing with each other.
The very fundamentals of BBNaija violate the basis of the Christian Faith. BBNaija is a competition, it promotes unhealthy comparison amongst the housemates. The Bible tells us that we should each consider the good of the other person as the top priority, BBNaija encouraged the HMs to selfishly think about themselves and just how they can win. It validates deception as you see people who play along in the house but they all want the next person to be evicted from the house. You will see Ike nominating Diane to be evicted from the house, yet he would go out to play with her after his diary session. Low self-esteem and high self-esteem are also subtly imparted. The housemate who is evicted feels bad and less accepted by the fans. The one who stays feels better and bigger than others even without merit. The very fact that who stays or wins is based on votes violates God’s principle of fairness and justice. The winning and losing is decided by votes, votes of people with different sentiments. No particular skill or ability is tested, unlike Project Fame or Gulder Ultimate Search. The guys would love to vote a lady who entertains them with her body – a lady who is very ‘open & free’. Don’t be quick to say it is a game.
It is a game, yes. But values are passed out through it. People watching pick up one thing or the other consciously or unconsciously. I will not deny the fact that at some point it is quite educative. They had some great arena games that promoted good virtues. For instance, the Innoson car game where housemates had to hold a rope for a long time. Some have classified the program has good because it is ‘educative’, well I believe its ‘educativeness’ is subjective. It takes a mature person to decide to learn from it and even to scrape out the virtues from it. You can’t compare how you learn from it with how you learn from any other source (the Bible, a piece of music, Christian message, Christian movies etc.) because the organizers did not have your ‘learning’ in mind when planning. It’s a game, yes, but it affects the reputation of some of the housemates for the rest of their lives. Some evicted housemates or disqualified ones will battle with low self – esteem in the corners of their hearts, that is an ungodly effect.
From every indication, we see that the organizers are concerned about their gains and not the success of the housemates. Different brands make the housemates hair, provide snacks, drinks, clothing and so on just to get popularity. Adverts are run intermittently and Biggie even asks Housemates to freeze while he runs his adverts, wow, that feels a bit inhumane. Even the games – the most relevant part of the show – are scheduled based on the number of brands available to sponsor. The brands eventually get presence into different heads.
Some have also argued that BBNaija is as good as Project Fame or Gulder Ultimate Search or any other reality show. Inasmuch as I do not categorically claim that any of the mentioned programs are morally fit for a Christian, I know that BBNaija is different from them. Project Fame camps people as well but their whole life is not televised. Project Fame tests a particular skill in which the participants are trained before they fall out of the game. The participants are not meant to compete with their actual daily living. Gulder Ultimate Search promotes the virtue of rigorous and relentless hard work. Winning is not based on votes but merit. At least, these other shows have a better respect for humanity.
However, I would like to say that some Christians have taken this too spiritually in some ways. The mere act of watching this show does not make one immoral. It can be entertaining. The problem comes from the very concept of the program, and the conducts of the housemates which promotes immoral vices. Some of the female housemates dress immorally, this will evoke lust in a male audience just like it happens when they watch a movie or a TV commercial. The shows are more sexually provocative for us men because we are highly by what we see, the ladies may not understand. I personally had to refrain from watching many times leaving my wife alone with it sometimes, just like I would do to some movie scenes.
There is also a critique on the logo of BBNaija as being satanic. Well, it may either be true or not but that is not the problem. BBNaija was adapted from a novel 1984 by George Orwell the Big Brother had a slogan which is ‘Big brother is always watching’ this explains why the logo was fashioned to express this. Even if the origin was satanic, merely looking at it doesn’t have any effect on you. What affects you is the information that gets into you from the program.
The concept and the structure of BBNaija show is unchristian (like many other forms of entertainment) and does not promote the virtues of the Spirit. It should not be seen as a source of education for a Christian.
Michael Adegoke is a tech-savvy Christian who loves to create content that transforms lives. He has a degree in English & Literature and has engaged in different aspects of the digital space including Graphic Design, Digital Marketing Search Engine Optimization & Content Creation. Michael loves to help people solve their most puzzling problems; he cares so much about you, for real.