Big Brother‘s Whitney Williams was the latest houseguest to be evicted from season 23, and the 30-year-old makeup artist partially blamed her downfall on her close ties to Brandon “Frenchie” French and her desire for the women in the house to take charge. Though she started off the season well as part of the Aces, Whitney’s associations with Frenchie, teammate Brent Champagne — whose moves irked several houseguests — and her intentions of targeting the Kings ended up putting a big bullseye on her back.
So when Kings member Christian Birkenberger was crowned Head of Household, he immediately targeted Whitney. When she unsuccessfully tried to persuade him to put up her fellow Aces teammate, competition beast (and newly crowned HOH) Derek Xiao, she was clearly running out of time. And on Thursday, she was unanimously voted out of the house. As the single mom of two told ET the day after her eviction, “I think everything went wrong in the previous weeks that led to this week.”
During her exit interview with ET, Whitney reacts to the Cookout’s domination of the season so far, why her plan to throw her teammate Derek X. under the bus failed and who she thinks is in danger of being evicted next.
ET: How are you feeling the day after your eviction?
Whitney Williams: I am feeling OK. The more that I do these interviews, I’m getting a little bit more foresight into what happened exactly. So right now, I’m just honestly really looking forward to going home and binging the past episodes, so I can see for myself how everything unfolded, so I’m feeling OK. I feel like I did everything that I could to try to get myself out of this position. I didn’t just roll over and die, so I have no regrets as far as that, and I just really want to know what’s happening behind the scenes that I was unaware of.
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What do you think went wrong?
I honestly don’t think anything went wrong this week. I think everything went wrong in the previous weeks that led to this week. I think that my allegiance to Frenchie in the very beginning was a huge dagger in my back and put in by myself. By associating myself with Frenchie in the beginning, I also was associated with Brent because Brent and Frenchie were very close, and Brent was one of my own teammates. And those were obviously two of the people to go out first, and people’s targets. So guilty by association, I think, was a huge fault. And then I also preached girl power and considering the fact that three men went out in a row, it was the obvious target for the men to get out a girl and what better girl to get out than the one that keeps preaching that she wants a girl to win? There were a lot of things that led to where I’m at now.
You fought really hard to get Derek X. up on the block, partially because he’s been winning competitions. Why didn’t your campaigning work out?
Oh, man. I feel like Christian had the perfect opportunity to backdoor Derek X., his No. 1 competition. It was very clear to the whole house that the Kings would be the target. This is what I was thinking. It was clear that he would be the target, so why not get out the main person who was capable of making that happen? The fact that he didn’t backdoor him the second that happened, in my head, I immediately was like, “Well, they have to be working together.” If you’re not getting out your biggest competition, then you’re obviously aligned with them. Because if I were in his position, I would have done that.
If you had a do-over, is there one thing you would’ve done differently?
Oh my gosh. My very first wrong decision was the fact that I chose Brent over Travis. I think that if I chose Travis instead of Brent, things would have been so much different. I think that was my first mistake. And then also, I saw Frenchie and he reminded me of home. I’m from a small country town. He’s from a little country town. He wears suspenders and was wearing camo and he’s also a parent. So we connected on a personal level. Then I saw his game strategy, which wasn’t a strategy. It was just utter chaos, but I still had this allegiance to him. If I didn’t align myself with him in the beginning and if I could have chosen that one person a little differently, then it would be a much different game for me right now.
It seems like the house is still feeling remnants of Frenchie’s chaotic reign.
Yes. We call it the Frenchie Revolution. That’s what we’ve been calling it in the house right now.
What was your game plan if you weren’t evicted this week and if it was Hannah evicted instead? What was your plan to keep yourself in the game?
Even though I didn’t know exactly what members were in the alliances, I could definitely see the alliances forming and I could see really close relationships not being as hidden and being more apparent. So I knew specific people were working together and that it was too late for me to join that. I wouldn’t have made it very much further. I know that there’s no way you can make it very far in the game if you’re not a part of them. So my plan, if I were to make it one more week, was to get out the really big threats and then I would’ve had at least another week or two in the house before they’d take me out. I really wanted to take out Derek X. or Kyland or I wanted to take out Alyssa or Christian. Depending on how they voted, if I were to be safe, they would have my allegiance that week and then beyond that, it would just be utter chaos and I would take out as many people as I was capable of taking out before I was voted out myself.
And Derek X. is now the new Head of Household. Who do you think is in the best position right now?
I originally thought Sarah Beth and X[avier]. Now somebody slipped and told me that Sarah Beth is being talked about as a potential target this week, which is really sad, because I was really hoping that she or X could potentially win the entire game. I think they’re both very intelligent people. They have a great social strategy. They’re capable of winning comps. Ideally, one of them would win. But I think if I see it that way, most of the house probably sees it that way, which would make them targets.
Who should be worried in your mind? Who do you think is next out of the house?
I think Britini is probably the next one out of the house. I could really see Britini being a target. And then after Britini, unfortunately, I could see Hannah being a target. My whole heart goes to Hannah and I wish her the best and I hope that she is able to make it a lot further. But I think she’s probably lower on the totem pole, as far as the alliances that she’s in, and it’s very evident that she’s an intelligent person and she has that fight in her which makes her a threat as well.
Now that the team twist is done, how do you think that that played out for you in terms of your strategy? Did it help or hinder you?
I wish that we didn’t have the team twist. I have a lot of mixed feelings. For my own game, I wish that there weren’t the team twist because I wish I could have chosen my own alliance. And the Kings, having the team twist made the Kings incredibly close to each other. So that automatically makes them a huge threat, but they’re incredible competitors and if they weren’t in the team together, I’m sure they would have been a lot more able to target each other. For myself, I was in a team with Brent and Brent was a target and then I was a target. So it affected me poorly, but I think it greatly impacted, in a positive light, the Kings. I was really hoping that having a team twist would prevent massive alliances from forming… I’m a part of some Reddit groups where fans — and I’m a fan myself — we hate big alliances. We hate seeing people just rolled over. I don’t want to see anybody steamrolled over and I hate when every vote so far this season has been unanimous or one rogue vote or two rogue votes. I hate seeing that. I don’t want to see a majority thing happen. I want to see people actually use their own minds for themselves and think for themselves. So I hate what’s happening, but you can only prevent it so far or so much.
The Cookout seems to be really dominating these first couple of weeks.
I want to see some of the… not weak players, because I don’t think anybody’s weak or strong at this point, because nobody’s really showing their true cards. But I would love the underestimated player pull out and make some huge game-changing decisions. I just don’t know if that’ll happen.
You’re the first woman of the season to be evicted and it happened in Week 4 and usually it happens earlier in a given Big Brother season. Is there a bit of a silver lining that three guys were out first?
Yeah, and I love the fact that beyond the three guys too, people of color are making it way further than they have in the past as well. So there’s a huge silver lining in that. I do love that about this season.
You said you can’t wait to catch yourself up on all the episodes. How do you think you’ll be received by fans? And what are you most excited to see when you do sit down and watch the episodes?
One of the main reasons for coming into the house, beyond winning the prize money — obviously everybody goes into the house wanting that — but I am a single mom of two boys and I’m a business owner. And my business is very female-focused. I’m huge on female empowerment and I’ve gone through really, really dark times in my life. So I really wanted to come on the show and be like, “Listen, these are the things that I’ve been through. Yes, it was incredibly hard, but you can get out of it.” I went from living in an attic just a few years ago to now, I have a very successful business and I was on national television with incredible people. I was up with people who are scientists and an attorney. And I was in a house with these people, and the fact that I was able to make it this far in my life so far, and it’s only going to go up from here, is absolutely incredible. I really wanted to be that example to other people and I hope that people saw that, that I’m able to be perceived in that way. So fingers crossed that I was able to show that enough, that people saw it. But I guess we’ll see when I get my phone back.
If there was an opportunity to come back into the game or do this again another season, would you be interested?
Oh, 1,000 percent. I loved being in the house. I had so much fun and I’m really sad that I am going home now and that I was voted out. But I wouldn’t change being in the house for anything else in the world. I met some of the most incredible people I’ve ever met in my life. The whole experience was an out-of-world experience. It was incredible. And if I had the opportunity to go back in or do Amazing Race or do any other show, I would jump on the opportunity in a heartbeat.
Big Brother airs Sundays, Wednesdays and Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBS. For more, watch below.
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