The Black Box is a recurring Have/Have-Not Competition, Battle of the Block competition, Head of Household competition, and Power of Veto competition.


Houseguests enter a black box. They must search around for items and place them where they need to go. The houseguest(s) that get the most the quickest will win the competition.

In Big Brother 18, houseguests had to hold a button, and if not back in time, would have to leave the black box competition.

In Celebrity Big Brother 1 (US), houseguests had to crawl through a makeshift restaurant and try to make their way out in the fastest time.

In Big Brother 20 (US), houseguests had to search around for folders in order to escape. There was one less folder than there were people playing, so whoever was left without a folder received a punishment. One special folder would allow whoever finds it to advance to the other round, while any other folder would only spare the finder from the punishment.


The competition was first used as a Have/Have-Not Competition on Big Brother 15. Houseguests Andy Herren, McCrae Olson, and Spencer Clawson won the competition, meaning they were haves for the week.

On the following season, Big Brother 16, the competition was used as a Battle of the Block competition. Houseguests Christine Brecht and Donny Thompson won the competition, dethroning the HoH that had nominated them. However, Christine was trying to throw it so Donny really won it on his own.

In its next appearance, Big Brother 18, the competition was used as an HoH competition. Houseguest Natalie Negrotti beat Corey Brooks by four seconds, winning her first HoH of the summer.

The next appearance was Celebrity Big Brother 1 (US), where it was used as a PoV competition that was won by James Maslow as his first win of the season.

Used as one of the opening night competitions on Big Brother 20 (US), half of the houseguests participated in this competition, with the loser being given a punishment. Angela Rummans won the competition, and advanced to the next round's Immunity Competition, while Kaycee Clark came in last place and was punished with a Unitard.

List of The Black Box Competitions

United States


Season Week Name Variant Winner
15 8 "The Black Box"
Andy Herren
McCrae Olson
Spencer Clawson
16 8
Christine Brecht
Donny Thompson
18 9 "Black Box"
Natalie Negrotti
20 1 "The Trash Folder"
Angela Rummans


Season Day Name Variant Winner
1 15 "Dining in the Dark"
James Maslow


  • Every season that this challenge has been used, it has been used for something different.

Big Brother Recurring Competitions
100 MinutesAn Offer You Can't RefuseAs Close As You CanAsk The EvicteeBB ComicsBB Storm WatchBefore or AfterBig Top DropBowlerinaBuzzkilledCaged EggsDizzy DiscsDomino EffectDrinks On UsDrunk SpeechesFaster Than A Speeding VetoFeeling KnottyFitting InFoam PartyGolf InvitationalHide and Go VetoIn The BalanceIt's Time to ReflectJury StatementsKnight MovesKnockoutLast One StandingMajority RulesMorph 'O' MaticNiagara BallsOTEVPerfect ShotPick Your PoisonPull Some StringsPunch, Slap, KickReady, Set, WoahSeesawSequence ExplosionSlapshotSlippery SlopeSolve For XSomewhere Over The VetoSpelling SearchStay or FoldStick It to MeThe Black BoxThe HauntingThe WallTightropeTime FliesTumblin' DiceWhat The Bleep?What Did They Just Do?What's The Hold UpWheel Of First ImpressionsWho Did What?Weight GainWho Said It?Yankee SwapZingbot Competition