I know what you’re thinking: the Big Brother 18 cast list was released on Tuesday afternoon, and, ever since then, you’ve been picking apart the new
housemates with a fine-tooth comb. But, if you’re anything like me, you probably
did a double take when it came to Glenn Garcia, the retired police officer who
is playing for $500,000 on this season of Big
Brother. Mostly because he's a lot older than the other contestants in
the house. But is
Glenn the oldest Big Brother contestant
ever in the history of the show? No, it turns out that this housemate isn’t the
only person over 50 to make it into the Big
Brother house. In fact, when it comes to the Big Brother contestants, age really is just a number.
For years now, older contestants have been the norm in the Big Brother house. Although there have been a few seasons that have passed where the contestants were all in the 20s and 30s, most of the 18 seasons that have aired on CBS have featured some contestants that were at least in the 40s, if not 50s. So, even though Glenn's age might seem high compared with the last few seasons of Big Brother — the house hasn’t seen someone older than 48 since Season 10 — it doesn’t mean that older contestants haven’t come before.
In fact, there have been four contestants that have been older than Glenn. Fifty ain’t what it used to be anymore, and these four other contestants who came before him proved that in spades. In Season 3, there was Gerald “Gerry” Lancaster, who was 51 at the time the show went live. He may have been in a house with a bunch of people in their 20s and 30s, but he was living large at the ripe age of 51. He also did pretty well for himself, making it through 55 days before being evicted from the house.
And then there was Jack Owens Jr., the Season 4 darling who made it almost as far as Lancaster did. Owens was evicted on the 54th day in the house, but he had some years on Lancaster and Garcia: he was 58 years old when he moved into the Big Brother house. There was another contestant around the same age, too. In Season 10, 53-year-old Lorenzo “Renny” Martyn made it all the way to day 59 before she was evicted, but it was 75-year-old Jerry MacDonald who made it even farther. A fellow Season 10 contestant, MacDonald was there for 66 days and came in third place before being evicted.
So don’t discount the older players in this Big Brother game. If history has anything to show for how they fare in the house, age definitely helps a housemate succeed.
Image: CBS; Giphy