‘Big Brother Canada 2’ full interview: Arlie Shaban on gameplan, First Five, and red pajamas

Arlie -Every season of “Big Brother” has at least a superfan or two, and “Big Brother Canada 2” did not disappoint with Arlie Shaban. The guy claimed that he wanted to play an “epic” game, and he certainly did that in how he manipulated, formed alliances, and even threw challenges like nobody’s business. He also got blindsided when Jon nominated him, and was the first person on the jury.

Arlie is our featured player as a part of our daily interview series from the house, and he had quite a bit to say across the board this time from his pre-game outfit to the origin story of the red pajamas. We like to cover the full spectrum here!

CarterMatt – We have to start with this. How in the world did you get this idea to bring this outfit into the house?

Arlie Shaban – I got this red pajama suit in grade 10 for Christmas, and I use to rock it at high school and to the mall. I got no shame.

As someone who had something similar in high school, I get it. How was the night for you, getting to meet everyone?

It was the greatest night of my life. I am such a huge fan of ‘Big Brother,’ and after the finale we went out with like 35 people from ‘Big Brother [Canada] 1,’ ‘Big Brother US.’ It was crazy to be a part of that. We’re a family now and I feel like that after hanging out with them.

Was there anyone you were especially psyched to meet?

Well first of all meeting Dan in jury was a big deal. It was crazy. Literally meeting all of them. Everyone from season 1 was just great, and then there was Howie, McCrae, Spencer, Amanda, like so many other different people from the US seasons. I couldn’t get enough of them.

One of my favorite parts of the whole taping was watching you and Neda specifically react to seeing people in the audience who were past houseguests. Did you think there was any way you’d get such an audience?

I had no clue how many people would be there. I had a good feeling that a couple of people would show up, but I had no idea it would be that intense and that many people.

What have you been focusing on in the past 12 hours? Have you been trying to get information on the game that you didn’t know about, or trying to reconnect with friends and family?

It literally has nothing to do with my friends and family right now, as weird as that sounds. I know the game is over, but I just want time to soak in this moment with the houseguests I lived with, with past houseguests, and I just want to get to know all of them. They’re my new family, so I’m spending all my time asking them questions about their lives and their experience.

How long do you think it’s going to take for your brain to come down from all this?

I have no clue. It is going to be a long time before my brain shuts down from this experience. I’m just running off a high right now that I can’t even describe or explain.

Let’s talk about a few things that played out throughout the game, starting with the First Five. What did you think about that alliance forming literally that quickly?

I thought it was pretty ridiculous to be honest, especially since the first thing Sabrina said to us was ‘I’m a huge fan of the show and I understand strategy to the max, you guys follow my lead and we can go far.’

First of all, I thought to myself, ‘there’s no way that you follow this game more than me,’ and second that you’re telling all this stuff to four strangers you just met. You want to keep all that stuff to yourself. So I knew that an alliance formed like that couldn’t go too far.

And when was it exactly when you first really started talking to people, and getting another alliance together?

My gameplan going in was just to sit back for two or three weeks, get to know everyone really well, and then create my own alliance. That’s what I said throughout all of my audition processes and stuff, I didn’t want to do it that fast.

The fact that I was in the first five, that was never real to me, and then there was a few of us that started to put together the sloppy seconds because they were powerhouses and were going to run the house … I had no questions about the Sloppy Seconds’ ability to compete in competitions, and that’s why they cleaned up.

Okay, so let’s talk challenges. There’s throwing a challenge, but there were some times at home I was like ‘this guy is going WAY over the top here.’

Honestly, it was so hard for me to throw them and make it look like I was throwing them. I’m such a competitor. When I give the 150%, I just blow through things. So when I just give it 80%, it was so blatantly obvious. Some competitions I think I did it brilliantly, and other competitions I was ‘oh s**t, that might have been obvious.’

I think the three greatest Arlie moments in the house were you throwing the potato competition and looking like you were about to die on the ground…

That was great.

The second was just the random head-shaving patterns…

That was part of my strategy. At the beginning of the game I didn’t want attention from girls and I didn’t want to be looked at as attractive or smart, so if I just shaved my hair into some goofy thing and acted all goofy, [it helped that].

So I guess that goes into the [third thing in the] streaking, then. Was that Ian Terry inspiration or completely out of your brain?

That was more to just go with my strategy. I needed to be goofy and funky and take any head off of any intellect that I had, so I just did fun, funky things, and [people may have thought] that’s how I got into the house, and not for me being strategic.

You liked to speak to us at home, and one of the bigger moments came when you gave this monologue at one point saying ‘I got this.’ Is that sort of thing good to psych you up, or bad in that you never want to be too confident?

It’s a tricky thing and a fine line to walk. I wasn’t confident for a while in the game. I just thought ‘things are going well.’ Then I got confident and comfortable, but that’s when my downfall was.

But I knew that once I switched from the First First to the Sloppy Seconds and exposed myself, I knew I had to get through the Kenny eviction and the next eviction. I whispered in Sarah’s ear as she left that if I get through the next two evictions, I’m going to win this game. I just needed to lay low a pinch longer, and then I was going to start running through these competitions.

Getting rid of you, I don’t know how objectively you can look at it, but how great was that for Jon’s game?

I can [look at it objectively], and that was the best move for Jon’s game possible. It was way better for Neda’s game, but the fact that Jon took me out, he was able to beast through most of the competitions. He wouldn’t have been able to do that in some of the competitions if I was still there. I would’ve crushed him in some. The rope one when he’s untying himself, I would have annihilated him.

Let’s talk for a second about something very new to the game in the Secret Veto. What did you think of all that?

That was crazy, and it actually eats me alive that I didn’t search the flowers sooner. When I first saw the flowers, natural instinct told me that I should go look in them. But because I was playing someone who wasn’t a superfan and doesn’t understand the game, I couldn’t run up and search through flowers because someone would say ‘that’s not the game he’s playing.’

The fact that she did it, she got it, it’s a brilliant move and a cool twist.

How was the overall experience in the jury house?

It was a great experience. I had a lot of time to myself to just sit and unwind, and then Allison and Rachelle came. We got super close in the jury. It was a super cool experience and the best way to unwind rather than going straight into the real world.

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