Dormer is a strategic mastermind, always plotting his next move, choosing chaos every time it’s an option and winning people over with his antics. Bird plays from the heart, forming deep bonds with her housemates, charming her way into everyone’s heart, and prompting them to protect her and shield her.
This week, Dormer found himself up for eviction, and while scrambling to secure his place in the game, told his housemates that it would be a sound choice for them to keep him and Bird in the game. Dormer’s argument was that since no housemate had ever won the game twice, anyone sitting beside Dormer and Bird at the Final Three would be the obvious choice for the win.
Chatting to The Latch over the phone after his eviction — his pitch was ultimately unsuccessful — we had to know whether he really believed that, or if he was just trying to make something work.
“It was complete last ditch attempt, but it was fun!” Dormer admitted. “In the start of the game, some of the newbies were quite vocal and angry that there were previous winners playing again,” he explained. “They were like, ‘I think somebody else should have a go at winning’.”
“There was a feeling in the house that the audience would get behind the newbies, but that has. Not. Happened,” he stressed. “The audience wants an OG to win, it seems. So I maybe underestimated how much the audience would be behind us from the outset.”
With Dormer and Bird being such different, but equally revered players of Big Brother Australia, it’s hard to imagine who would’ve come out on top had they both found themselves in the Final Three, so we had to know: Does Dormer think he could’ve beaten her?
“Ooh, good question!” he exclaimed. “I think at the time, no. I walked in there thinking ‘I’m never gonna beat Reggie at the end’, so either someone else has to take her out or I would have to, and I never wanted to.”
Noting that to take Bird out “would’ve maybe cost [him] the win” anyway, Dormer said that he’s “kind of glad” they didn’t end up going head-to-head in the final episode, which is set to air live next week.
“I think it would’ve been nice, us two sitting next to each other, and Reggie herself has said ‘I wish we could’ve both been there at the end!’ but I say no way!” he explained. “Because either [Reggie] might’ve beaten me and I would’ve hated [her] and we wouldn’t be friends, or I would’ve beaten [Reggie] and Australia would’ve hated me for robbing [her] of the win!”
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Calling her “Australia’s sweetheart”, and “the clear favourite” for the win, he added: “I just hope she does get to the finale and I’ll support her for the win.”
As for whether Dormer will actually be giving his vote to Bird, should she make it to the Final Three, Dormer kept it coy: “Ohhhhh, look, maybe who I support for the win and who I vote for the win are different, I’ll leave that with you.”
Of the newbies, Dormer said that he hopes Australia can “kind of shift their mindset” away from the idea of the perfect Final Three being three OGs and “take into account the good game that the newbies have played”.
“Like imagine being up against me, Reggie, Dave [Graham], Estelle [Landy]!” he exclaimed. “They did well, and there were parts of the game where they had no hope in hell, so they did play a good game!”
He added: “Had us OGs not been playing in the game, I think Australia may have a very different relationship with some of the OGs that are left.”
It’s been nine years since Dormer was last on Big Brother Australia, and the game has changed and evolved a lot since then. It’s an area of contention amongst the fans — there are people who love the latest iteration of the series, and people who bemoan it, wanting the series to return to live shows, with less “strat chat” and more time for the audience to really get to know the housemates.
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As someone who’s played both versions of the show, we wanted Dormer’s take.
“Oh look, Big Brother, it’s 21 years this year and that’s what the celebration was!” he said. “And it has evolved a lot and it’ll keep evolving.”
Dormer said that the return of the OGs this year was a “great [way] to bring back an element of the old Big Brother“, and that he hopes it shows the producers “that the audience really does love the heyday of the show“.
As for changes they could make to appease the fans, he suggested that perhaps they could return it to its live format, have the audience vote more, or just have more content in general.
“I mean, how good was it when we used to be able to tune into the live feed, watching housemates sleeping!” he said. “Do you know how many hours I wasted?! And it really helps people form that bond with them and get behind them.
“So I think if they combine that with the game, the show would just explode,” he said. “It’ll always be a phenomenon, it’s one of the original reality TV shows. He’ll always be around, Big Brother.”
So, what’s life set to be like for Dormer beyond Big Brother? Well, he’s keen to remain in the public eye, and if they’ll have him, he’d love to return to Big Brother again.
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“I’ve got my podcast The Big Mouth coming out each week, and I would love to do more television,” Dormer said. “If Big Brother is back for next year, I’m gonna be knocking on the door!”
“My dream is to host it one day,” he confessed. “I think Sonia [Kruger] does an amazing job but I would love to be a part of it next year and hopefully Big Brother will have me back in some form, because people say ‘it’s just not Big Brother without Tim!’ and that’s the biggest compliment I could’ve ever got.
“I’ll always wanna be a part of the show, that’s for sure,” he added.
Big Brother Royalty Vs New Contenders continues on Monday at 7.30pm, only on 7 and 7 Plus.
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