The TV Watercooler had an opportunity to speak with the winner, runner-up, and America’s Favourite Houseguest following the Big Brother: All-Stars season finale last week. Here’s our interview with winner Cody Calafiore as he chats about his emotional homecoming, Nicole’s bitterness, and his loyalty to Enzo.
Congratulations! What has it been like these past few days outside the house?
Thank you, bro. Appreciate it! It definitely is a little different being on this end, but I am thankful. It’s nice to be home. Being around my family is helping me decompress a lot. My aunts and uncles have been coming by and I’ve got to see some of my friends.
I’m sure it was an emotional homecoming.
It’s a lot coming out to the state of the world with everything that’s going on. It’s chaos! After three months go by, you hope that maybe it’s going to be zen? It’s just not. You’re so hopeful in the house. Honestly. Nothing crushes that hopefulness. It’s like being a kid and believing that fairy tales are true, then you come out and go, “Oh, man! This is still what it is was before going in.” It’s tough.
Can you walk us through your decision to play this season? With everything going on with the pandemic, how did you make your decision to play this season?
Ultimately it was a lot of things. Everything that I was doing had shut down. I was coaching, acting, and doing real estate. Everything shut down immediately. It’s hard as an independent contractor to also get any aid where I was it. My income essentially halted, and I went into panic mode. Then I got this call and I was one hundred percent going.
Normally, my schedule is so crazy that it would have been even harder, but it came at a time where it was a blessing. It was a very easy decision. But after I said yes, a couple of months later, a lot of personal stuff had been going on, which made it even harder. But it was something that I felt that just needed to do.
I got the call around early April and I felt that it was the perfect opportunity for me. I decided yes right away but it was still up in the air. We were never confirmed. Being in that limbo was weird, but if it was going to happen, then I was going to be there!
First HOH. Never on the block. Both pretty huge. Most would have thrown that first HOH and many did – what made you decide to go for it?
To be honest, hearing a lot of names that [they]were talking about going on the show and seeing a lot of them in the house. I was like “Oh, these were a lot of people whose names had been leaked, could they have been talking [before the game]?” I wasn’t going to be the first victim of something that [could have possibly]happened before the [actual]show.
So, for me, I really wanted to throw the first HOH originally, but then I decided not to. I decided to not treat it as an HOH as I was rarely in the HOH room. If people were going to ask “Oh, where’s Cody?” I didn’t want the answer to be “He’s upstairs with a certain group of people.” I was going to be in the back room, or one of the bedrooms, and hanging out downstairs. [During that that first HOH], I didn’t want that HOH room to hurt me, I wanted it to help me. I won it, but I treated it as if I didn’t win it. I only had the safety. I think that’s what helped me that first week the most.
How did you adjust your strategy after that?
Yes, without a doubt. A big thing of mine was that I didn’t want to put a lot of weight on competitions and having to have to win those in order to be “good” or make it to the end of the game. In my first go around, I wanted to win all the competitions but for this time, it wasn’t the case. It was about the calculated wins – win only when there are clear targets. Sure, I’ll win a veto to lock in those targets, like Kaysar and Janelle. Any HOH’s with clear targets, those were the easy ones for me.
The one that I won with Kevin and David, those were two clear targets that I could start off with on the block and then we’ll get to the point where we’ll start imploding. If I had to go after somebody in my alliance, I was willing to do that.
Going after Tyler in the next HOH, it was more so that, but it turned in to the tail end of the game, being like, now that I’ve already won a bunch, I guess I’ll just keep going.
Nicole still seems really bitter. She’s unfollowed a bunch of players on Instagram.
I don’t really know what it’s about. Honestly, I really don’t hold anything against her. It’s really understandable for her to be in a tough state coming out of the house, especially after being cut. I think it’s going to take time. I think she’ll be fine.
Did you think she would have won against your or did you just want to stay true to Enzo?
I did want to stay true to Enzo. I don’t want to forget to mention that. I really wanted to stay true to Enzo, but I also thought that if Nicole wins and takes me, I think she’ll beat me and I think that if I win and take Nicole, it might be close…
So, I should just win and take her. But then I thought, if I take Enzo, then it’ll be more up in the air. I thought about different scenarios where people could have voted for Enzo or my game – I was a little surer that it would be an even playing field [with Enzo], but I was pretty sure that Nicole would have had guaranteed votes right away. I thought Christmas and Kevin would have voted for her. Who knows what could be going through David’s head, he could be voting for her. It just seemed that the balances would be tilted towards Nicole. I didn’t want to go to the end and lose. That was huge for me. I don’t want to be sitting in the final two and lose again.
It was very important for me to make the right decision there.
Is there anyone that you wish you could have worked with? I know Kaysar and Janelle were targets right away, but was there an instance where you thought you could have worked with them?
Oh man, I like Janelle a lot. Obviously, they didn’t show our conversations, but spoke to Kaysar a lot about life. He had such an incredible perspective on so many things. Talking to him personally was great, but anytime that I tried to talk game, there was just something about the way he spoke to me that I did not trust at all. I think that’s where the disconnect between us came for me. We’d have these great personal conversations, but then once those conversations shifted to game, both of us couldn’t connect. I don’t think he could trust me either.
It would have been cool to work with Janelle. She was fun! Finding out that Janelle was the one coming after me was a surprise, I thought it would have been Kaysar. I did wonder why he was coming after me at first, but I get it!
Big Brother Canada returns for season 9 in early 2021 on Global. Big Brother will return for season 23 next summer on CBS and Global.