Big Brother Season 17 Finale

Big Brother Finale Recap: Which Houseguest Was Crowned the Winner?

Unlike Big Brother host Julie Chen, I’m not going to make you wait through countless “But first…”s before revealing the winner of Season 17. (Nothing personal, Chenbot!)

After waiting 98 days to find out which houseguest would come out on top, you deserve to know up front that this summer’s champion is — seriously, I’m about to spoil it for you — Steve!

Steve’s win was the cherry on top of a super-sized finale Wednesday night, the highlights of which are detailed below:

* Vanessa, Liz and Steve face off in the first part of the final Head of Household challenge: an endurance competition that finds each contestant getting periodically dunked in a vat of red liquid. Vanessa — who has spent all summer getting proverbial blood on her hands — seems to have no problem with this challenge and wins it easily. (Steve, meanwhile, trumps Liz handily in the second part of the final HOH.)

* Dr. Will sits down with the members of the jury to discuss the Final 3. The major takeaway: Austin wants Vanessa to be evicted so badly, he’d cut off his ponytail beard to make it happen. (Don’t tease us, Austin!)

* In a nail-biting third round, Steve is crowned the final Head of Household and, looking thoroughly nauseous the entire time, makes Vanessa the ninth jury member.

* Liz and Steve field questions from the jury about why they each deserve to win, and it plays out a lot like the U.S. Open tennis championship would, if Rafael Nadal faced off against an elementary schooler in her first week of lessons. Despite being part of the summer’s dominant alliance, Liz is unable to pinpoint her individual accomplishments in the game, and Steve essentially steamrolls over her in the Q&A.

* It comes as no real surprise, then, that Steve earns six out of nine jury votes, making him the (adorably emotional!) winner of Season 17.

* James, meanwhile, walks away with the $25,000 America’s Favorite Houseguest prize. (My money was on Johnny Mac. Expect the unexpected, indeed.)

That’s a wrap, Big Brother fans! Did Steve deserve to win? Who earned your vote for America’s Favorite Houseguest? Drop all of your finale thoughts in a comment below.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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37 Comments
  1. Coach Taylor says:

    Steve becomes what is the 2nd worst winner in the history of this show (only to Andy from season 15) he road the coattails of Vanessa all season long. Liz was more deserving. She had more odds against her but Vanessa was the one who should have won. By far the top female player of all time

    • idiot lol. steve went into beast mode the second half of the season and was arguably the best player from then on.

    • damroberts744 says:

      Andy has the unfortunate stigma of coming from the least liked season of all time. I don’t know if its fair to call him the worst winner.

    • Steve let them destroy themselves while making friends and alliances with everyone and never really targeting anyone except the ones who were clearly in the lead.
      That’s called strategy, not riding coattails.

      Liz was the one riding coattails. Her twin and Austin were the ones making the big moves every time. She just was the girl with the pretty face who watched it all go down in her name.

      Even when talking to the jury, she doesn’t have any accomplishments to say aside from having a target on her back due to being a twin and something about going along with Austin’s plan for domination.

    • Mr. Smith says:

      Steve might have dreamed of Big Brother since he was a toddler, but he only started playing the game in the final weeks. Liz, on the other hand, and whether anyone wants to admit it since she was in a showmance, played the game the entire season. She won early on and still had a hand in all of the evictions up until the last week or two.

      Simply put, Steve won because it was his “dream.”

      Another summer of “expect more boredom.”

      • LK says:

        Thats not true… I’ve been following the feeds all season.. Steve has been playing the whole time.. He had an alliance with Vanessa from the start (despite what was shown on the tv show) and he had a strategy of laying low, forming alliances and then winning comps at the end.. and his strategy worked.

      • Winter says:

        As he rightfully pointed out even in the beginning he won the comps he needed to to stay safe in the first 2 weeks then threw comps to stay off the radar. He went for being an outsider to a part of almost every alliance and he beat out Vanessa for HOH and drop kicked out the door. He played the game the whole time.

        • Nicholas says:

          No he didn’t. Vanessa is the true winner. He played the game the final weeks and got rid of Jackie. You obviously just started watching this. Any true bb fan knows players.

    • Agreed Vanessa is in my top 3 best players of all time, up with Will and Dan. Finally, someone else who sees the person who played the better game all round and doesn’t vote with emotions. Facts show V won at least 5 HOHs, POVs, and was responsible for most of the people being voted out.

  2. sntindall says:

    I’m glad I stopped watching weeks ago. This season was awful.

  3. B says:

    liz was embarrassingly bad while answering those jury questions, guess she really didn’t prepare!

    • Coach Taylor says:

      So bad. Issue is she may have won over Vanessa because of bitter jury which would have been worse than Steve winning

      • LK says:

        She wouldnt have won… Aside from Austin the jury wasnt bitter… in the backyard interviews most of them said they were rooting for vanessa

  4. well deserved steve. dude went into ultimate beastmode in the second half. it ain’t how you start the race, it’s how you finish (*cough cough* Gatlin *cough cough*). he was well composed and spoke eloquently during his answers while liz acted like the blonde she did the entire season with half-thought out answers and said nothing of any significance. steve made one of the best final speeches showing all his merits which were many. congrats steve-o, you won’t have to play that ‘trombone’ alone anymore.

    • Coach Taylor says:

      I won’t go as far as to call you an idiot like you did to me above but come on. You cant watch that entire season and say Steve was the best player. Members of the jury were better than Steve. He didn’t play his own game. Not at the beginning not in the middle and not at the end. He won HOHs yes that’s true however he played Vanessa’s game meaning Vanessa was more deserving. Anyone who plays someone else’s game isn’t a top winner.

      • Randy says:

        The thing is, Vanessa wasn’t in the final two. Had she been in the final two, no question she should have won. However….Big Brother is played all summer as a lead-up to the final week. Steve was lucky to get to final 4, but once he did, it was lights out. Both Liz and Steve were asked to elaborate on how they played the game better than the other person. Steve had facts, along with numbers to back up his claims. Liz had nothing. She hadn’t even prepared answers because she didn’t expect to be in the final 2. Total disregard for the motto of the show, “Expect the Unexpected.”

      • DarkDefender says:

        Vanessa didn’t make it the final two.. So that makes Steve the best player of the season. She played a manic and manipulative bullying game. Steve was like a snake.. Slithering along.. Watching.. Biding his time, until the moment he needed to strike. All Liz did was win a few comps and try to ride to the final on Julia and Austin’s backs. Everyone else paled in comparison, which is why they were on the jury.
        .
        Although Steve was the most likable, I’m glad James got the fan vote.

        • LC says:

          I don’t think beating Vanessa to the final two makes Steve the best player, it makes him the luckiest. Yes, it came down to him and Vanessa for HOH, but that game is always a total guessing game. It’s all about who can read the jury’s mind better. They both got questions wrong, they both got questions right, but it came down to Steve guessing one question better than Vanessa did. From there, it was pretty obvious. Steve was going to turn on Vanessa. He had to. As far as winning challenges, he won certain types of challenges…I mean seriously, I cross word puzzle against Liz? He really should have won that by more than 2 and half minutes. Until Week 11, he played completely a non-game, just sitting back and letting both sides take each other out. Johnny Mac said it perfectly when he called Steve the worst alliance member in the history of Big Brother. Someone else (can’t remember who) was so right when they said that the only value he was to his alliances was to be a vote. His HOH win on DV night was an accident. He didn’t mean to win, and admitted many times that he didn’t WANT to win it. Steve was the closest thing to a floater this season had. I don’t think he’s the worst winner ever, but no better than average at best.

          • LK says:

            A floater floats to the power every week and doesnt pick sides. Steve had a solid alliance the entire game… Johnny Mac was a floater… Steve was a member of Freaks and Geeks a.k.a. Scamper Squad since week 3.

          • Winter says:

            Floating is a good strategy. If you want to play lights out, pedal to the medal BB fine but unless you win out the whole time you will go home early. That’s the interesting part of this show. If you aren’t good at this game you will go home. If you are too good at this game you will go home. You have to play it smart and play to your strengths which is what Steve did.

          • Wild child says:

            He actually would have won by more than two and a half minutes. What wasn’t shown was that halfway through the comp Liz had given up because she could come up with an answer so BB gave her clues to help her. At that point I suspect she had already passed Steve’s time and they just wanted her to finish which I think is bull. They should have let her give up like BBCan did with one of the final 4 last season. FYI, Liz admitted to this on the live feeds.

      • Vanessa was the best player of the season.
        Steve wasn’t the best player, but he did what he had to do. Follow the leaders and then turn on them once he got the chance to.
        Also Duante never says Steve was the best player, just that he deserved the win.

  5. alistaircrane says:

    Vanessa’s eviction made me so happy! She was such an evil person in this game. It’s satisfying that she was evicted just as she got so close to the end. Hehehe!!!

  6. I voted for James. So glad he won something. I was done forever with this show if Vanessa had won. STEVE DESERVED TO WIN!!!!! He made big plays.

  7. Linda says:

    I just want to say thanks for sharing this! I worked late and watched all season, did not get to see the finale! You summed it up fabulously for me.!

  8. Lori S. says:

    Steve took out the biggest player of the season who had a hand in sending everyone out the door. He deserve it HANDS down with no competition. Way to go Steve! My hands hurt from clapping so much.

  9. Tian says:

    Yeah, wasn’t a huge fan of either steve or liz but steve was definatly more deserving. People always forget that pretty much everyone in the game rides coattails to some extent. Plus his last big move was cutting off a snakes head…don’t forget it!

  10. Liza says:

    Glad that Steve had the stones in the end to make the big move and vote out Vanessa. It was the most worthwhile thing he did all summer. I never imagined him winning this game when it all started, but between him and Liz, it was a no-brainer! I voted for Johnny Mac to win America’s favorite, but am still happy for James to have won it. He was a good guy and lots of fun this summer!

  11. Winter says:

    It was a great finale for me. My brother, sister in law, and I were yell at the TV when Steve sent Vanessa packing. Vanessa would have won hands down if she had gone to final 2. Liz actually could have made I convincing argument for winning but she was so woefully unprepared for the questions at F2. I’m not sure how you get that far and don’t at least prepare something in case you make it to the end.

    All 3 of these guys were good competitors and I was happy to see the way it played out. Also I was happy for James winning FF even though I voted for Johnny Mac. It was a fun season.

  12. Will says:

    Well, Vanessa DID state that she would vote bitter. I bet if you gave Vanessa at least a day to mull over it, I bet she would have voted for Steve. Did anyone notice how dejected Vanessa was during the finale? You could tell she was still devastated inside. Like John losing that F4 veto competition, he already knew. Vanessa losing the final HOH – she knew. I think her biggest mistake was not voting out one of the Austwins early, then voting out the “superfan” with Austin on the block. Also, Vanessa announcing she’s a professional poker player winning millions. Oooh…yay…woopeefrickindoo.

    • LK says:

      I dont think her vote was made bitterly.. I think she knew that Steve was gonna win and wanted to vote for Liz as a way to repair her relationship with Austin.. She mentioned it when she was talking to him in the backyard after the show.. “i voted for her… I’m not a bad person”…

  13. moe says:

    He had almost zero target on his back the entire game and when there was a target, he won the comps. Almost flawless. Liz had a sister and a boyfriend to provide protection.

  14. shadester says:

    I really wanted JohnnyMac to win or James but Steve was my other choice. I really thought John would win favorite but good for James!