Big Brother

Cheating scandals, political protests and an eviction blunder: Big Brother's most shocking moments

These were the peak years of Aussie reality TV!

By Alana Mazzoni
With the new reboot of Big Brother just around the corner, seeing familiar faces return to our screens has us feeling nostalgic about the contestants of yesteryear.
From Tully and Drew's infamous romance, to Sarah Marie's iconic bum dance and Merlin's eviction protest, the original seasons of Big Brother provided us with some of the best entertainment to ever grace Aussie TV screens.
Keep scrolling for a trip down memory lane at the most scandalous, hilarious and downright shocking moments from Big Brother's heyday.
Tully and Drew dominated headlines back in 2013. (Image: Nine)

Tully and Drew's dramatic relationship - 2013

Tully Smyth was just 25 when she appeared on the 2013 season of Big Brother where her passionate, and at times tumultuous, fling with housemate Drew Anthony became national news.
And the reason their romance was so juicy? Well, Tully entered the house already in two-year relationship with a woman named Tahlia Farrant. Then she met Drew.
Of course, while Tully and Drew were getting on like a house on fire, there was the slight issue of the then-social-media-strategist's girlfriend on the outside, who wasn't too happy with what was playing out on screen.
Their relationship didn't last long in the outside world. (Image: Nine)
After seeing her long-term partner get a bit too close for comfort with a fellow contestant, Tully's girlfriend Tahlia took to Twitter to speak about what was going on in the house.
"Thanks for your concern, but I am a big girl. I will be just fine. Life goes on," she wrote.
Meanwhile, voluntarily sequestered Tully remained blissfully unaware that she had just been dumped as she continued her rendezvous with Drew.
However, it didn't take long for the then-25-year-old to be booted from the show, at which point she had to face the music.
Lawson and Cat dated for five years after the show ended. (Image: Nine)

Lawson cheats on his girlfriend with Cat - 2014

If you though Tully and Drew's relationship was controversial, fast forward to a year after their season had aired and the drama had been unexpectedly triumphed by yet another Big Brother cheating scandal.
Electrician and magician Lawson and divorced midwife Cat entered the house and immediately hit it off; in fact, they hit it off maybe a bit too well as the pair got into a very PDA-heavy relationship despite Lawson having a girlfriend on the outside.
Throughout the competition, then-23-year-old Lawson was so besotted with Cat, then 31, that he turned a blind eye to his girlfriend of four years, Candice Leeder, who was watching his reality journey unfold.
Outside of the house, Candice, unsurprisingly, dumped the reality star.
Cat and Lawson shocked fans by staying together long after the show finished, but they officially called it quits in 2019.
Merlin staged a political protest during his eviction. (Image: Ten)

Merlin's silent protest on eviction night - 2004

Back in 2004, Merlin made Australian TV history when he was evicted from Big Brother.
It was not the eviction itself that was so shocking, but rather what he did once he was on stage with host Gretel Killeen, who was ready to interview the star.
As he walked onto the stage, he put a strip of black tape over his mouth and held up a sign that read "Free the refugees".
The then-23-year-old had managed to sneak the sign into the Big Brother house by sewing it into his shirt prior to entering the competition, hoping that it wouldn't be discovered when security was patting him down.
As Merlin sat silently holding his sign, host Gretel grew frustrated as she tried to engage the evictee in conversation.
"This segment is five minutes long, are you going to speak at all?" Gretel said, to which she got no reply.
Aussies fell in love with Sara-Marie! (Image: Ten)

Sara-Marie's iconic bum dance - 2001

Ahh, the early days of Big Brother were absolute reality TV bliss!
With her infectious personality and bunny ears, 22-year-old Sara-Marie invented the bum dance craze that took over the country.
Upon exiting the show in 2001, Sara-Marie said the hilarious dance was a sign to tell her sisters she was happy in the house.

Corey Worthington enters the house - 2008

Anyone who has lived through the late 2000s in Australia might have heard of the exploits of Corey Worthington, the 16 year-old who threw the party of the house decade and sent teenagers, neighbours, and police into a frenzy.
Corey entered the Big Brother house on Day 7 of the 2008 season together with another housemate named Terri.
During his stay, he refused the task of evicting two of the Gatecrashers (Nathan, Michael, and Barney) and got into an argument with Bianca.
Despite his party boy antics, Corey only lasted in the house for 10 days before being evicted.
Corey lasted 10 days in the BB house. (Image: Nine)

Bree is evicted by mistake - 2004

A massive mistake in the fourth season saw fan favourite Bree Amer evicted after a vote counting error.
Much to the delight of fans, she returned to the house – after meeting family and friends – the Monday after her Sunday eviction, with actual evictee Wesley booted instead.
The bubbly blonde went on to become season four's runner-up, just missing out on the $1 million prize – the largest ever sum forked out by the show.
Bree was wrongly evicted in 2004, though she later re-entered the house and went on to win. (Image: Ten)

The notorious turkey slap - 2006

It was one of the most controversial moments on Australian TV, when housemate John held down Camilla so that Ashley could smack her with his genitals.
Thankfully, the situation was dealt with swiftly by producers, who sent the two packing from the Big Brother house.
The situation not only angered fans, it forced the then-Prime Minister John Howard to speak out against the reality show, calling for the "stupid" program to be axed and branding it "filth".
Camilla was season six's runner-up.
John held down Camilla so that Ashley could smack her with his genitals. (Image: Ten)

The Logan twins pretend to be the same person - 2005

Remember when twin brothers Greg and David Mathew (AKA the "Logan" twins) were tasked with the trying to convince their housemates that they were in fact one person, namely Logan, rather than two?
It was one of the most bizarre - yet surprisingly entertaining - challenges dolled out by producers.
They had to swap places on Big Brother's command, much to the entertainment of viewers.
That lasted about a week before they were outed by housemate Glenn, after he was picking up "different vibes" from each of them.
At a later eviction, the show said farewell to David. Then after three months in the house, Greg eventually walked away with the $836,000 prize money, which he shared with his brother as part of the deal.
Twin brothers Greg and David were tasked with the trying to convince their housemates that they were one person. (Image: Ten)

Katie and Jamie get "married"

For a moment in time, the country was utterly obsessed with Katie and Jamie - who forged one of the original Big Brother romances.
As fans will remember, Jamie and Katie even staged their own onscreen wedding - attended and officiated by their fellow housemates.
But like most reality TV love stories, the pair's relationship soon fizzled on the outside world.
Jamie and Katie staged an onscreen wedding. (Image: Ten)
  • undefined: Alana Mazzoni