An alliance can make or break the game of Big Brother. Just ask Chill Town, The Hitmen, Level 6, and the 25 best alliances in Big Brother history.
When Big Brother first premiered in 1999, the inaugural players didn’t know what they were doing. The competition series and social experiment lacked the format and structure that it has today. No one was being backdoored, there weren’t floaters, and showmances weren’t clouding everyone’s judgment when it came to the block.
But once the houseguests starting getting the hang of Big Brother with each passing season, it quickly turned into the crazy, twist-heavy game of expecting the unexpected that we obsess over each summer. Of course, one of the hallmarks for a houseguest to make it from day one to finale night is piecing together a strong alliance. Incorrectly referred to as teams (looking at you, BB19 houseguests!), alliances can divide or run the house if given the proper power.
Over the course of 20 seasons, not to mention an online edition and the first celebrity season, Big Brother has seen the inception of countless named alliances. They always begin in excitement, don’t they? Bright-eyed, busy-tailed houseguests form alliances before getting into the thick of the betrayal, lies, and twists. We’ve seen groups like the Bomb Squad crash and burn early and others such as The Hitmen and Level 6 make it the final two.
Whether alliances are successful or fail to meet their well-intentioned goals, many have made an impact on the game in some form and left behind a lasting legacy. From pre-jury implosions to half-million dollar victories, there are the 25 best alliances in Big Brother history. Floaters, grab a life vest!
25. Bomb Squad
Members: Amber, Caleb, Christine, Derrick, Devin, Frankie, Hayden, Zach
Biggest Moves: Perhaps the Bomb Squad’s biggest move was its own implosion. Simply put, the Bomb Squad was not built to last. Although it began as an all-guy’s alliance within the first two weeks of Big Brother 16, Devin (who you might remember as playing too hard too fast and from always saying he had a daughter) concocted too ambitious of a plan for the Bomb Squad. With only numbers in mind, he pulled together eight members, two of which (Amber and Christine) were hasty additions without consulting with the group.
While the Bomb Squad didn’t last long enough to run the game, the short-lived alliance’s biggest move was evicting Devin in the third week. Oftentimes a houseguest will show tons of promise but their game turns sour when they get their first taste of power. Devin wanted to play puppet master and tell everyone what to do, but little did he realize, that’s not how you win 500K. Being a leader is one thing, but forming an army of misfits made up of half the house and ruling the house under a dictatorship? That’s not the ticket, friend.
Legacy: Sure, you might be saying that the Bomb Squad was a failed alliance and shouldn’t be ranked as one of the best. For obvious reasons, it’s ranked as dead last, but it’s still one of the best alliances for the lessons it passed down through the subsequent seasons. First of all, the Bomb Squad proved that Big Brother isn’t a game built on tyranny. When one alliance member runs astray in a fit of paranoia and power obsession, they need to be sent packing. More than anything, the Bomb Squad was a cautionary tale on the dangers of a massive alliance attempting to take over the game without any strategic gameplay whatsoever.
24. “The Team”
Members: Christmas, Cody, Dominique, Elena, Jessica, Mark, Matt, Paul, Raven
Biggest Moves: As if the new crop of houseguests learned nothing from the Bomb Squad in season 16, the season 19 cast repeated embarrassing history… and somehow made it even worst. In terms of gameplay, season 19 might have been one of the worst seasons on record. Paul returned as the only veteran player and continued to put everyone under his spell. Then, a truly ridiculous amount of showmances emerged and formed a super alliance that wasn’t so super.
Once again, the season 19 cast formed a super alliance that consisted of half of the house early in the summer, and cue Dani Donato because — shocker! — it didn’t last. The winner of the season wasn’t even in this unofficial, unnamed “team,” but most of the jury was. For some reason, season 19 like to refer to alliances as “teams,” which wasn’t just incorrect terminology, it was also absolutely maddening. The biggest move these crazies probably made was turning on Cody and Jessica, who became the unlikely antiheroes of the season.
Legacy: In all honesty, season 19 leaves behind no legacy. Paul swooped in and changed the entire game, and he didn’t even manage to pull of the big win. (He came in second place for the second year in a row. He was no doubt, as he would say, pissed.) But to play devil’s advocate, it’s pretty masterful that an alliance made up of weird showmances could band together and work toward a common goal together. Still, that common goal wasn’t ultimately met as the game went in unpredictable directions, namely a bully who banged pots together winning the grand prize.
Members: Bayleigh, Faysal, Haleigh, Kaitlyn, Rockstar, Swaggy C
Biggest Moves: Oh, FOUTTE. How do we even begin to talk about Big Brother 20′s strangest alliance? For the first time in a few seasons, there were actually two strong alliances that divided the house into opposing forces, with a few stragglers left to play the field. It’s never fun to watch one entity hog all of the power and pick off the rest of the houseguest one by one. And even though FOUTTE existed as Level 6’s foil, they still couldn’t put a decent fight.
FOUTTE, which Kailtlyn created to stand for “five of us ’till the end,” didn’t live up to the promise of its name as none of its members made it ’til the end. (Haleigh put up the best fight and deserves to return to the game in future seasons as a veteran, but that’s neither here nor there.) Seeing as FOUTTE was short-lived, they didn’t have the time to exact their power over the other side. Even when they held any kind of power, FOUTTE played the defense to Level 6’s offense. Unfortunately, the biggest move they made was evicting Swaggy C, who was one of their own members.
Legacy: Even though FOUTTE rarely had a leg to stand on in the game, you can’t deny that they showed up to play and never gave up. Despite the flood of tears in the DR and Fessy’s never ending aggressive confusion, FOUTTE made Level 6 that much sharper. That might be giving season 20’s lesser alliance too much credit, but hey. They deserve some recognition for sticking together and giving it their all in the face of constant danger. Let’s just not pat them on the back for Haleigh’s hacker house meeting and Rockstar giving Tyler the winning answer during OTEV.
Members: Corey, Da’Vonne, Frank, James, Michelle, Nicole, Tiffany, Zakiyah
Biggest Moves: A common theme you’ll see at the start of every new season of Big Brother is some supposed mastermind recruiting members for a huge alliance. But that’s always a tall order. The 8-Pack began season 18 with the mindset of sweeping through the game and making it to the final eight with each other. However, paranoia and backstabbing typically has other plans in store, even for the best BB players.
The 8-Pack alliance was initially successful, running the house for the first few weeks before dismantling at the hands of internal strife. There were fights (mostly between Da’Vonne and the others, though Tiffany’s paranoia sent them over the edge) and most of the members defected from the alliance. Although flipping on each other might have been the best move, blowing up Paulie’s game was definitely the biggest move the fractured 8-Pack could have made. Still, the 8-Pack clocked in 15 competition wins and brought two of its members to the final four. Of course, Nicole wound up winning the game against Paul by one vote.
Legacy: The 8-Pack’s legacy will be it lesson on loyalty. This group of eight, as strong as they might have been, joined forces much too soon and couldn’t agree on a common goal. Therefore, they couldn’t be loyal to each other at the expense of risking their personal games. Working with multiple allies in the Big Brother house is a tightrope that not everybody can walk. Ultimately, the 8-Pack fell victim to the usual downfalls. If you’re lucky enough to make it out of a mismatched armada with a few loyal allies, like Nicole, you can prove the system wrong.
21. Scamper Squad (a.k.a. Freaks and Geeks)
Members: Austin, Julia, Liz, Steve, Vanessa
Biggest Moves: We can all agree that season 17 was one of the hardest to get through, right? The twists were confusing (except for the return of the twin twist) and the gameplay was just… not it. Each week there were two HOHs and four nominees, who would compete in the Battle of the Block competition. Before long, the twist was used to the advantage of gameplay and quickly ousted. But the Scamper Squad and all of its sub-alliances ended up being one of the better alliances to come out of a middling season of Big Brother.
The Scamper Squad went through many ups and downs week by week as power shifted and the twist became difficult to navigate. However, even with a pair of showmances getting in the way and Vanessa’s emotional but ruthless gameplay raising the stakes, the alliance managed to secure all of its members spots in the final six. Steve and Liz duked it out in the final two with Steve taking home the half million dollar prize.
Legacy: In a season where it was hard to get a footing on the game, the Scamper Squad rose to the occasion and fought the good fight to the end. Even though they might not be one of the most beloved alliances in Big Brother history, you can’t deny that these freaks and geeks found a way to stick together until the end. From the Sixth Sense to Dark Moon to whichever iterations the alliance took behind closed doors, the Scamper Squad seemed to redefine the big alliance and how to make winning a manageable shared objective for all to attain.
20. The Veterans
Members: Brendon, Daniele, Dick, Jeff, Jordan, Rachel
Biggest Moves: The biggest move season 13’s veterans made was probably entering the house to begin with. When returning players stroll back into the house, there’s never not a target painted right in the center of their backs. In the case of season 13, three sets of veteran duos came back for their second chance at the game: Season 8’s Evel Dick and Daniele, season 11’s Jeff and Jordan, and season 12’s Brendon and Rachel.
The dynamic duos decided to team up in a formidable power alliance on the first night in the house, but their supposed reign showed cracks very early on. Dick left the game before any votes had been cast due to personal issues, Daniele defected from the veterans, and everyone but Rachel and Jordan failed to make it to the final five. Their original plan plotted to pick off the newbies, but Dani fed information to Dominic (whom she later married) and forced the vets to really play the game in the midst of the duos twist.
Legacy: Even though The Veterans alliance was better in theory than in practice, these six players were the most famed in Big Brother history. Being so, it wasn’t hard to root for them to succeed again. The dynamic duos legacy lies in Jeff losing because of a clown shoe, Rachel redeeming herself, and Dani lighting a fire under future players to show up and play the game in her fierce speeches. They may not have stuck together until the end (save for Jordan and Rachel, the latter winning the season), but with eight out of 12 HOH wins and six out of 11 veto wins, they sure ran the game.
19. The Detonators
Members: Christine, Cody, Derrick, Frankie, Zach
Biggest Moves: You know what the biggest move The Detonators could have made would have been? Turning on Derrick. Little did any of them know, Derrick was silently running the game behind the scenes. Case in point, he made it to finale night without ever having been nominated for eviction. And he was involved with the Bomb Squad. After that alliance spectacularly fizzled, The Detonators were formed and sought to carry each other to the end. Well, the whole crew made it to the final six, so they must have been successful.
The Detonators, while a ragtag bunch of players with wayward loyalty, made their mark on Big Brother 16. Compared to the prior season, the game played out much more civilly and with a touch more strategy on the whole house’s part. The biggest move the alliance made involved key evictions. They cut loose cannon Zach, America’s Favorite Houseguest winner Donny, BB18 winner Nicole (twice), Christine, Frankie, and “beastmode” puppet Caleb and paved their way to finale night. Turning on your own alliance when the time comes is always the biggest move.
Legacy: Season 16 holds a special place for many viewers, due to the gameplay and houseguests returning to a place of strategy and civility. (It’s not just because of the Ariana Grande connection, okay?) With the introduction of the confusing Battle of the Block twist, this cast quickly hacked the competition and learned how to use it to their backdooring advantage. More than anything, Derrick proved to be the real puppet master of the see with the conception of The Detonators, which dropped way more bombs than the Bomb Squad. Sorry not sorry, Devin!
18. Legion of Doom
Members: Danielle, Dr. Will, James, Mike Boogie
Biggest Moves: Ever since Big Brother debuted its first (and currently only) all-stars season in the summer of 2006, fans have been clamoring for another edition. Season 7 featured a cast full of returning players that were fan-favorites and proven game changers. From veto queen Janelle to veto cautionary tale Marcellas, the all-stars season brought the heat. Four of the strongest players, which boasted a previous winner and runner-up, combined expertise to form the Legion of Doom secret alliance that wound up one of the most successful in history.
Of course, the Legion of Doom consisted of Dr. Will and Mike Boogie’s sub-alliance known as Chill Town. Now, certain fans feel a certain type of way about Chill Town (which we will more than get into later on down this list), but the Legion of Doom was truly a force to be reckoned with. Jame initially rejoined the Sovereign Six, as many of the members of the previous season’s alliance returned for All-Stars. However, following a pivotal week, the Legion of Doom began their short reign, using their power to nominate pawns and evict other houseguests.
Legacy: Because they were so short-lived (hey, you have to flip on your alliance when the numbers dwindle), the Legion of Doom doesn’t often have its named tossed around in popular Big Brother lore. However, we have to give the group credit for helping to create new strategies for the game and ally-ship while the show was still in its relative infancy. In the end, the alliance was a success as Dr. Will and Mike Boogie landed coveted spots in the final four with Mike Boogie ultimately winning the banner veteran season.
17. Mr. and Mrs. Smith
Members: Diane and Jase
Biggest Moves: The biggest move Diane and Jase made? Aligning with each other. Apart from the initial inception of their Mr. and Mr. Smith alliance in season 7’s all-star run, neither player had the follow through or luck to even make it to jury. In fact, Diane (who finished in third place in season 5) and Jase (who finished 10th in the same season) left the all-star house back-to-back. Jase left during James’ head of household reign in week 3, and Diane was sent packing the following week during Janelle’s second (of four) HOH reign.
It’d be easy to say that the Mr. and Mrs. Smith alliance had been sniffed out for running the house, but that simply wasn’t the case. Maybe that had been suspected of being in an alliance for spending too much time together or expressing just a little too much loyalty toward each other, but the house appeared to remain clueless to the arrangement. The validity of the alliance wasn’t confirmed until finale night, and its pre-season origins also resulted in some good ‘ol Big Brother controversy. These all-stars showed promise, but they were bested by their own big move.
Legacy: Obviously, Diane and Jase’s Mr. and Mrs. Smith alliance made an impact on Big Brother history despite their failures in competition wins and ultimate safety. In BB20, Rockstar came to sworn enemy Brett with a proposed Mr. and Mrs. Smith alliance. Although the secret partnership never materialized, Rockstar’s foresight to align with a fellow player as a display of loyalty and strategy confirms that secret final two deals or just secret pairs can work. Rockstar probably didn’t know the backstory of the original Mr. and Mrs. Smith, but their influence remains strong.
16. The Regulators
Members: Cassi, Dominic, Keith, Lawon
Biggest Moves: Let’s hear it for Dominic, huh? In Big Brother 13, he rose as one of the season’s strongest newbies, but thanks to endless twists and an uphill battle between the veterans and new players, he became an easy and necessary target. When an initial newbies alliance folded, Dominic rallied some troops to create The Regulators and fight The Veterans alliance head on. But before the group could even strike, they were picked off one by one.
The biggest move The Regulators made was Dominic’s plan to backdoor Jeff with Dani’s help… but that didn’t pan out. Instead, it imploded all the work they had set up and tanked everyone’s game who had been involved in the plan. Following the revelation that Dani flipped on her fellow veterans, an all-out war divided the house. Thankfully, Dominic had the strategic drive to even form The Regulators, he received the best coaching from future wife Dani.
Legacy: Did The Regulators leave behind a legacy? That’s worth a discussion. Their short existence definitely exemplifies the hardships a smaller, less powerful alliance has when attempting to sink the bigger holders of power in the house. If anything, the legacy of The Regulators lies with Dominic, a player with undue potential who should have been given a second chance to play the game in a less charged with BB politics. It’s honestly unfortunate that such a cool alliance name was wasted on one that made little to no impact. We need a Regulators revival!
15. The Four Horsemen
Members: Cowboy, Drew, Jase, Scott
Biggest Moves: On Big Brother, the all guys alliance is a tale as old as time. Every season, one inevitably pops up with the intention to steamroll the house with their bro energy and unflappable cockiness. One of the show’s earliest examples of “bros” teaming up and falling victim to their own flas was season 5’s The Four Horsemen, which consisted of Cowboy (formally known as Michael), eventual season winner Drew, Jase, and Scott. They weren’t unlike season 20’s Brett and Winston but with two extra characters that were actually likable.
By and large, The Four Horsemen wasn’t a successful alliance. Scott and Jase (the first casualty of the “Six Finger Plan,” what’s known today as the backdoor) were evicted back to back, with help from defected horsemen Drew. From there, Drew and Cowboy maintained a close friendship and, you could say, allyship for the rest of the game. However, Drew began a showmance with Diane, leading to Drew’s biggest move on the road to taking what was left of The Four Horsemen to the final two: Evicting his girlfriend and taking his best friend to the end.
Legacy: You could say that The Four Horsemen alliance inspired a wave of male houseguests to try and replicate the boys club inside the Big Brother house. Unfortunately, oftentimes it works much better than when women band together, which is actually a major blindspot in the game. Anyway, season 5’s Four Horsemen alliance leaves a major legacy, not because of what it accomplished as a group but what it accomplished to establish gameplay that still influences the game today. Drew’s final two decision remains a vivid and pivotal moment for the game, an enduring shocking moment in BB history.
14. The Quack Pack
Members: Britney, Dan, Danielle, Ian, Shane
Biggest Moves: Following the formation of The Quack Pack in week 3 on Big Brother 14, they continued to smoke through the competition. The coaches twist dissolved and allowed the coaches to play as individual houseguests, but the four veterans didn’t team up. Instead, Britney and Dan formed The Quack Pack with three strong newbies. In those formative weeks, the alliance’s biggest moves were evicting Janelle, Mike Boogie, and Frank.
Of course, The Quack Pack’s second biggest move was preemptively cutting one of its own loose: Britney. As if a replay of The Brigade burning Britney before the final three in season 12, Dan blindsided Ian and Britney when he concocted the plan with Jenn and Frank to backdoor Britney, an ousting the DR queen did not deserve. (Hello, major Britney stan here!) From Britney’s eviction on, The Quack Pack followed Dan’s mist to the finish line, where Dan came in second to Ian’s almost unanimous win from the jury. Not bad for an alliance with a secret hand signal.
Legacy: Unfortunately, it’s hard to fade from anyone’s memory with a name like The Quack Pack. Once again, though, The Quack Pack showcased another brilliant display of loyalty and precision. With Dan steering their ship toward the finals, they had nothing to aim for but success. Find another alliance that got the majority of its members to the final four. It’s a rarity on Big Brother. They would have ranked much higher had they not cut Britney so early. Yeah, we’re being as ruthless as Dan’s mist during his emotionally manipulative funeral.
13. The Friendship
Members: April, Beau, Eric, Ivette, Jennifer, Maggie
Biggest Moves: Following season 5, Big Brother hit a real stride with its next two seasons. Season 6 featured a “summer of secrets” twist, which consisted of each of the houseguests entering the house with a secret partner. Whether they were former roommates or sorority sisters, these pairs came in having known each other outside of the game. Even though the prize increased if the pairs made it to the final two together, the houseguests quickly sussed out the “secret” twist and it mostly evaporated in favor of two domineering alliances.
The Friendship took on the Sovereign Six in a heated summer-long battle that led straight to two of its members sitting in the nominee chairs on finale night. But the public seemed to prefer the Sovereign Six to The Friendship. From the beginning stages of The Friendship’s reign, they weren’t off to the most likable start with Eric, otherwise known as Cappy, in the lead. Once he was evicted under Kaysar’s HOH, The Friendship’s biggest move was sending Kaysar out the door twice pre-jury.
Legacy: Here’s the scoop on The Friendship: They are one of the most hated alliances in Big Brother history. It’s unfortunate since the alliance is composed mostly of women, but opinions are opinions. Negative feelings toward The Friendship aside, you have to give major credit to Maggie for defying the odds all season and rising as the “summer of secrets” victor. And, not to mention, The Friendship managed to take three of its six members all the way to the final four, which not many alliances have to their name. To this day, it’s telling that Janelle remains the season’s biggest star over the two Friendship members that beat her.
12. Girl Power
Members: Alison, Erika, Jun
Biggest Moves: In the fourth season, Big Brother really started to take shape with its format and the “expect the unexpected” ethos. BB4 was dubbed as “The X Factor,” as a group of the houseguests would be playing the game with their exes. The first group of eight houseguests to enter the house aligned before their exes could descend and wreak havoc. As well-intentioned as the Elite Eight might have been to stick together as a unit and pick off their former flames, they couldn’t stick together long enough to carry out their mission.
But in the ashes of the Elite Eight, a new alliance materialized late in the game in order to make it to the end. Alison and Jun spent most of the season on opposite sides and not getting along. They both spent quite a bit of time in the diary room expressing their dislike for the other, but when the numbers weren’t on their side, they teamed up with Erika for an alliance no one would see coming. The Girl Power trio mobilized to strike against the remaining members of The Three Stooges. In the end, Erika took fourth place, while Alison took Jun to the finals, where they took runner-up and winner respectively.
Legacy: Even though the Big Brother 5 houseguests would be the group to learn how to manipulate the game in their favor, the BB4 cast were guinea pigs. This was the first season that the Golden Power of Veto was employed for a full season, meaning the nominees were also able to take themselves off the block. It was a game changer, and one that came in clutch for the Girl Power alliance. Before Alison and Jun aligned, Jun nominated her partner in crime for eviction. If anything, this dynamic, unlikely duo proved how powerful women (or anyone for that matter) can be when they support each other.
11. The Exterminators
Members: Andy, GinaMarie, Judd, Spencer
Biggest Moves: First things first, let’s discuss the elephant in the room. Big Brother 15 has become the forgotten season in BB lore because of its never ending controversy. There was rampant racism, which caused Julie to confront an evictee for possibly the first time ever, and bullying became a strategic tactic. Of course, there are two sides to the story because viewers will never really know the ins and outs of being in the house, but beneath the surface of the scandalous and lackluster fifteenth season, there was some real gameplay going on from Andy.
The Exterminators emerged late in the game out of necessity for numbers to strike against Aaryn, McCranda (remember Amanda and McCrae?), and Elissa. The alliance consisted of Andy, Judd, Spencer, and GinaMarie, who was lucky enough to enter the backyard when the group was taking shape. Even if they didn’t hold power, they helped to orchestrate the evictions of their targets. Sure, it was hard to root for anyone in season 15, but The Exterminators did what they needed to do. Securing McCrae and Elissa’s evictions were the season’s biggest moves by far.
Legacy: Can this alliance have a legacy that supersedes the crumby memory of a season full of unlikable houseguests and lower level gameplay? If anything, we can let Andy have this one. He doesn’t often get the respect he deserves as a winner. It’s believed that winners should have been running the house in the open for the entire season. But he stayed under the radar, won when he needed to, and kept tabs on everything going on in the house. New flash, Rachel: Sometimes being a floater is an artform, not just the demarcation of a listless, lousy BB player.
10. Six-Finger Plan a.k.a. Pinky Swear Alliance
Members: Adria, Diane, Karen, Nakomis, Natalie, Will
Biggest Moves: In response to The Four Horsemen alliance, a handful of outsiders bonded to form the Pinky Swear Alliance (which was unofficially named) and reclaim power. But once The Four Horsemen imploded, Nakomis rallied a few affiliates to enact her Six-Finger Plan. Today, we refer to it as the “backdoor.” Nakomis nominated two allies for eviction, ensuring they could choose who played in the veto (that rule would soon change to an anonymous draw).
With her target safely off the block with no means to snag his own safety, Nakomis nominated Jase as the replacement nominee and sent him out the door — the backdoor. Soon, Nakomis’ Six-Finger Plan became one of the leading week-to-week strategies to reduce the chance of a target pulling themselves from the block. Of course, there are flaws when it comes to power duos. But the Six-Finger Plan alliance made one of the biggest moves in Big Brother history. Not many alliances can say they invented a strategy.
Legacy: Even when the twins flipped on the original Pinky Swear crew, the key members fought their way to the final four. But even though a member of the alliance didn’t win the game, their impact can’t be understated. Clearly, the Six-Finger Plan’s legacy can still be seen in current episodes of the series, as houseguests use backdoor opportunities to blindside their targets. In the fifth season, Nakomis became one of the first players to truly mastermind the game. Since this season, there hasn’t been a new plan quite as elaborate and influential to flip the game on its head.
9. Sovereign Six
Members: Howie, James, Janelle, Kaysar, Rachel, Sarah
Biggest Moves: Some of the best Big Brother alliances in history are those whose formation are in response to another alliance. When The Friendship declared themselves as powerful in the beginning weeks of BB6, six members of the other side of the house decided to make a final six deal and sweep through their opposition. Well, the Sovereign Six didn’t necessarily sweep The Friendship out the door, but they made a decent effort.
The biggest move the Sovereign Six made occurred during the week 3 veto competition, in which the members each boxed Maggie and Ivette out of the chess match. (little did they know, Maggie and Ivette would wind up the final two.) James won the veto and pulled himself off the block, paving the way for Kaysar to nominate Cappy and send him home. Unfortunately, the S6 alliance turned on each other when they suspected James of playing both sides.
Legacy: Despite only getting Janelle and Howie to the final five, the Sovereign Six, they are one of the most celebrated alliance of all time. It’s interesting when the house becomes divided between two different alliances. Usually, one of the alliances is the fan-favorite, while the other is seen as the oppressor. Sovereign Six was the popular fan-favorite (though The Friendship had its supporters) and helped chart the game’s course for how to play the game amid a stark division down the middle. By leaps and bounds, Janelle holds the legacy of S6 on her back between two seasons.
8. Chill Town
Season: 2 and 7
Members: Dr. Will and Mike Boogie
Biggest Moves: Listen, you might find Chill Town, comprised of Dr. Will and Mike Boogie, to be one of the most cocky and arrogant alliances in Big Brother history, and they are. Let’s just call a spade a spade here. Chill Town didn’t make frequent DR appearances as a pair and enter the house in season 7 with pre-made Chill Town t-shirts and claim humility. They knew what they were doing with each and every “phone call,” and they didn’t apologize for their confident conceit.
But you can’t say that Chill Town wasn’t one of the best BB alliances. Dr. Will and Mike Boogie are two of the strongest competitors to ever play the game. During the second season, the duo quickly paired up, but their reign was cut short when Boogie was sent out the door in week 4, leaving Will to fend for himself until he took home the win. When they returned for all-stars, Will continued his mind trickery and didn’t win a single competition, which resulted in his eviction during Boogie’s HOH and ultimately won Boogie the game.
Legacy: There’s something truly remarkable about the staying power of Chill Town. More often than not, they made the game look too easy, like lying to and manipulating the other houseguests was as simple as breathing. But they put in a lot of work, too. In Big Brother 2, Dr. Will was nominated for a total of four times in 10 weeks and only ever received one eviction vote. He also managed to wine the game without winning head of household or winning the Power of Veto, which wasn’t yet in play during the second season. If that’s not a legacy, then what is?
7. Jeff and Jordan
Season: 11 and 13
Members: Jeff and Jordan
Biggest Moves: It’s pretty crazy that a showmance could become an alliance and that alliance could become a family. That’s the power of Big Brother! In 2009 (almost 10 years ago!), Jeff and Jordan met during BB11, and their friendship quickly turned into something that was much more than a simple bond. Who knew you could find your soulmate during a social experiment reality competition? At this point, Big Brother has produced more relationships than The Bachelor(ette) franchise, and that’s not even the point of the show.
No matter how you feel about Jeff and Jordan personally, game-wise they were a force. Jeff was often the hot-head, and Jordan reeled him in to maintain their social game. They both brought something invaluable to the table, which kept a target firmly placed on both of their backs. Even though their showmance put them in danger during BB11, they were in constant danger during BB13 when they returned as veterans. Jeff’s biggest move in season 13 was getting out sure-winner Daniele out, while Jordan’s was making it to the final four again after winning BB11.
Legacy: Obviously, Jordan’s legacy is surprisingly bulletproof. Not to underestimate her, but no one would expect Jordan not only to win one season but to come back and almost make it to the final three again. There’s much more than luck working in Jordan’s favor between her two-season run on the show. As for Jeff, his legacy on BB will always be the infamous clown shoe. After sending Daniele home, her closest ally got him out during a double eviction, and he lost the veto by one clown shoe. But that doesn’t tarnish the reputation of BB’s sweethearts.
6. Ross and Marissa
Members: Ross Mathews and Marissa Jaret Winokur
Biggest Moves: Overseas in the United Kingdom, Celebrity Big Brother is a pretty major deal. It took much longer than necessary to bring the special edition of the series to the United States, but in the winter of 2018, CBS finally premiered the first season of the American celebrity edition, and it was spectacular. The cast featured some well-known faces and some lesser known celebs, but the season was one of the best BB season in ages thanks to Ross Mathews and Marissa Jaret Winokur.
Due to the sped-up pacing of the celebrity season (it lasted barely one month), there wasn’t a whole lot of time for alliances to pop up, and even less time for the celebrity houseguests to name their alliances. But it was clear from the beginning that Ross and Marissa were playing the best games. They wisely remained loyal to each other and kept others close to them for numbers, such as Brandi, Ariadna, and — gulp — Omarosa. Ross’ biggest move was never being nominated on eviction night and getting Omarosa out, while Marissa’s social game scored her the win.
Legacy: Without Ross Mathews and Marissa Jaret Winokur playing such incredible games, there’s a chance Celebrity Big Brother wouldn’t have been renewed for another season. Of course, there’s inherent interest in a celebrity edition of a huge reality series, but it could have gone down in flames with the wrong cast. But Ross and Marissa left their mark on Celebrity BB as one of the most deserving final twos we have seen on any season of the show in years. They should be recognized as two of the greats and return for a future all-star season.
5. Level 6
Members: Angela, Brett, Kaycee, Rachel, Tyler, Winston
Biggest Moves: What move did Level 6 make that wasn’t big? We haven’t seen an alliance hold as much power as Level 6 in a long time on Big Brother. The alliance took shape very early in the game, and managed to avoid many of the pitfalls big alliances usually experience in the beginning stages of the game. Even with FOUTTE as an opposing force on the other side of the house, Level 6 was indestructible and unbeatable. You know an alliance is strong when they control the house on weeks when they’re not in power.
They lost expendable members like Winston and Rachel pretty early, but after dropping two numbers, Level 6 managed to hack the game — in more ways than one. Thanks to the hacker competition and some manipulative savvy, Level 6 sent Rockstar home during Haleigh’s HOH and Scottie during Fessy’s. Who else has ever been able to convince another alliance to send home their own allies? A pivotal move for Level 6 was cutting Brett during the double eviction. It’s always smart to know the perfect moment to let loose a strong number and Tyler, Angela, and Kaycee did.
Legacy: More often than not, it’s hard to root for the alliance that’s constantly picking off the other side of the house, but none of the players in Level 6, apart from Brett, were arrogant. Especially not Tyler, who has shown more aptitude for the game than any player since maybe season 16. Not to mention, Kaycee tied the record for veto wins in a season, matching Janelle, Daniele, and Paul’s five wins. Level 6 carried four of its six members to the final six, which is an impressive percentage. What’s all the more impressive is that Level 6 will go on to secure a win, making Big Brother’s 20th season one of the most entertaining and strategic seasons to date.
4. Danielle and Jason
Members: Danielle and Jason
Biggest Moves: Without giving them too much credit, season 3’s power duo of Danielle and Jason basically invented the secret final two alliance. Over the years, the game has gotten harder and partnerships of this nature have gotten more precarious to traverse. But when the game was still in its infancy, Danielle and Jason teamed up and remained under the radar for an entire season. You know that infamous Marcellas eviction? They planned it.
Blindsiding Marcellas, who didn’t use the Power of Veto on himself on eviction night, probably stands as Danielle and Jason’s biggest move in the house. However, they both stayed off of the block until it came down to the final three. Clearly, many of their clever moves were made behind the scenes of their gameplay to ensure their safety. Also, they only won competitions when they needed to, with Danielle winning one veto and HOH and Jason winning two HOHs and a veto. A lot of work goes into getting a final two deal to the final three.
Legacy: Danielle and Jason’s legacy would have been even bigger had they managed to maneuver themselves into the final two. But here’s where their influence on the game comes into focus. In season 3, the jury was made up of all previous evictees, who hadn’t been sequestered. Having seen Danielle’s diary room confessionals, the jury gave Danielle but one vote to win — from Jason, of course. Because of this, the jury system was modified to include a smaller pool of sequestered houseguests. And, you know, splitting the votes for Marcellas’ eviction truly was a stroke of genius that’s set a precedent all these years later.
3. The Renegades
Members: Dan and Memphis
Biggest Moves: When it comes to Dan, every move is a big move. Britney gave his infectious mind control powers a name in season 14: The Mist. And during season 10, we encountered Dan’s masterful strategy firsthand. One of the best moves Dan could have made was aligning with Memphis to form The Renegades, a final two alliance that acted as the under-the-radar antithesis to the constant fighting on the opposite side of the house. (If you thought Big Brother 15 was the year of fighting, you conveniently forgot about Libra and Keesha’s iconic fight.)
Try as they might to stay under the radar, The Renegades were in consistent threat of eviction because the others were onto them. Between using his standing as America’s Player to work his misting magic and just their general powers of persuasion, Dan and Memphis stay off the block on the weeks they weren’t in power. But they had to fight tooth and nail to evade heading to jury rather than finale night. In the end, they cut their toughest competition and made it to the final two. That’s extraordinarily rare.
Legacy: Dan’s legacy speaks for itself. He’s one of the best to play the game, and he could probably never play again because he’s so good. Too good. Dan employed conscious strategies from day one, such as making himself look weak in competitions and using the social aspect of the game to smooth people over. He was honest and loyal, but honesty and loyalty have an endgame in the Big Brother house. Unfortunately, Memphis lived in Dan’s shadow, but together they were indomitable. The Renegades reinvigorated the game and ushered in a new era of 24/7 gaming, scheming, and winning.
2. The Brigade
Members: Enzo, Hayden, Lane, Matt
Biggest Moves: Although it’s regretful to rank season 12’s The Brigade so high, an objective eye can’t deny that they were one of the best alliance to ever rule the game. But that doesn’t mean that they weren’t obnoxious to watch as they were armed with a whole lot of unearned confidence. Let’s just put The Brigade into perspective with some statistics: Apart from Matt’s two HOH wins, the rest of the alliance didn’t do much winning until the end of the game. Hey, we’re not knocking the strategy, but they still need to be humbled all these years later.
Unfortunately, the biggest move The Brigade made — aside from getting out Brendon, Rachel, Matt, and Ragan — was turning on Britney. To this day, the group blindsiding Britney stings. Somehow, the alliance managed to keep their existence on the down low, so much so that their affiliates didn’t even know who, or what, they were working with. That’s an accomplishment in and of itself given one of their members referred to himself as The Meow Meow. Nonetheless, barring Britney from the final three more than likely guaranteed The Brigade’s win.
Legacy: It’s funny that even though The Brigade won the game, their legacy has been overshadowed by Brendon and Rachel ‘s return to the game in season 13 and Britney’s return to the game in season 14. Those three remain friends of the show and fan-favorites, though The Brigade’s accomplishments are an afterthought. Sure, they might not be as powerful as they were in the house, but their gameplay directly influenced how the game would be played for seasons to come. Everyone wanted to be The Brigade (hello, Bomb Squad) as much as they wanted to be Dan. But not everyone can pull it off.
1. The Hitmen
Members: Cody and Derrick
Biggest Moves: If this were a ranking of the fan’s favorite alliances, The Hitmen probably wouldn’t have been ranked in the top spot. But because this is a ranking of the best, season 16’s final two alliance edges out the others by a hair. Honestly, who’s to say who played the game better than others? After all, this game is one of strategy intertwined with luck. Well, The Hitmen used unparalleled strategy in association with their luck to push and shove to the end of the game. No matter how you feel about them, that’s an impressive and unprecedented achievement.
The biggest moves The Hitmen made were targeting threats of varied degrees while they held power and when they didn’t. Derrick’s first HOH win result ed in tyrant Devin’s eviction, while Cody evicted Donny, a dark horse competitor and America’s Favorite Houseguest. Some of these ruthless hits on fan-favorite players, such as Donny and Nicole, resulted in their poor public reception, but if the jury can recognize how impossibly pristine they played the game, then BB superfans can tip a hat to The Hitmen.
Legacy: To say that Derrick bested Dan would be a lie. They are two of the strongest players to outwit Big Brother, and their seasons were exemplary, textbook reinventions of strategy. Both adapted to the whims of their competitors and came out on top. However, Derrick made it to the final three without having been nominated. How does that happen on a season where the Battle of the Block produced four nominees a week? In that regard, her’s the first BB player in history to never have an eviction vote under his belt while being grilled by the jury.
Which Big Brother alliances were your favorite? Let us know in the comments!