In the wake of controversial "Big Brother 15" house guest Aaryn Gries' Aug. 29 eviction, the college student and former model's mother broke her silence regarding her daughter's use of racial slurs via a Sept. 3 statement to the Los Angeles Times.
Elizabeth Owens, whose family hired a publicist to do damage control after Gries' behavior sparked outrage among viewers, apologized for her daughter's comments, most of which were made during the first half of the "BB15" season. Owens called the remarks, which included a suggestion that fellow house guest Helen Kim, who is Asian, "go make some rice" and a host of incidents with African American player Candice Stewart, "inappropriate" and insisted that they "do not represent the value system under which her father and I raised her."
Despite the apology, Owens also shifted much of the blame onto CBS and "BB15" host Julie Chen. After using her daughter's "young" age to partially excuse her behavior, she chastised the network for using Gries' controversial statements to "boost ratings." She criticized Chen for what she termed an "attack" on Gries during her exit interview, and blasted the network for not "airing her complete statement acknowledging the mistakes she made" while still inside the "Big Brother" house.
Owens may well have a point, as ratings were up a significant nine percent over the summer 2013 season as of an Aug. 15 Denver Post report. Gries' comments, along with like-remarks by fellow players GinaMarie Zimmerman and Amanda Zuckerman, have drawn ire, but they've also prompted more viewers to tune in to view the misguided shenanigans.
The next "Big Brother 15" live eviction will take place Sept. 5 on CBS, and will conclude with the ouster of either Zuckerman or Spencer Clawson.