Every season during Big Brother, fans have a million conspiracy theories about some player or another being ‘rigged’ to win the show. For Big Brother 17, the first person conspiracy theorists pegged as the ‘ringer’ to win the show was transgender contestant Audrey Middleton. However, when she demolished her own game very early on, another supposed CBS plant to win it all rapidly emerged: millionaire poker player Vanessa Rousso.
Before Big Brother 17 was even a third of the way through, rumors were flying all over the place that Vanessa Rousso was in cahoots with CBS to win the season. There was even an alleged leaked memo of sorts that after Vanessa won BB17 through producer manipulation, she would then be given her own show about poker around her Lady Maverick card-slinging identity.
Of course, Vanessa Rousso did not win Big Brother 17. She came in third place, behind Steve Moses and Liz Nolan. Despite all her manipulations, uncanny ability to know what was going on in the house, and even blatant bribery attempts, she finished out of the money entirely.
Never ready to give up a well-chewed bone, some conspiracy theorists came out on social media to say that it was all the talk about Vanessa being a CBS plant that caused producers to decide not to have her win after all.
Whether or not you buy into any of the wild conspiracy stuff, there is some truth in the rumors that CBS did have a special something with Vanessa Rousso. In a recent interview with All In magazine, Vanessa admits that she has had “a relationship with CBS for years.” In fact, Rousso says she has been on the casting radar for CBS since 2009 and it was “just a matter of finding the right show.”
So yes, Vanessa Rousso was definitely a recruit for Big Brother 17, which we found out quickly enough from watching the Big Brother Live Feeds. More than that, she has apparently been waiting in the wings for a CBS show for quite some time and has a relationship with the network.
Was Rousso actually supposed to be helped by producers to win it all, hopefully launching a new reality TV star for CBS in the process, and the plan fell through when too many people caught on? Well, we’ll leave that answer to the conspiracy theorists out there to decide.