Big Brother: After Dark is an uncensored, uncut live feed from the American Big Brother House. The program debuted on July 5, 2007 as a companion show to Big Brother 8 and it airs on Showtime 2 and Global Reality Channel. The program is the only first-run original program produced specifically for any of Showtime’s seven multiplex channels (the bulk of the network’s first-run original programming airs on the main Showtime channel, and is replayed on its various multiplex channels, including Showtime 2).
After Dark airs nightly live on Showtime 2’s Eastern (12:00 midnight-3:00am) & Central (11:00pm–2:00am) feeds & on tape delay on Showtime 2’s Mountain (10pm-1am) & Pacific (9pm-12:00 midnight) feeds, while a season of Big Brother is in progress. The show uses the same live feed footage available to 24/7 Internet subscribers, though the show’s producers choose the camera angles and scenes within the program. Viewers can visit a special section on Showtime’s website and interact with other viewers about the events in the Big Brother House. Due to the uncensored nature of the show it is rated TV-MA-LS.
The show itself covers all the events happening in the House during the time of 9:00 PM–12:00 AM PT. According to executive producer of Big Brother Allison Grodner, these three hours would be entertaining as “That’s prime time for the Big Brother house. It’s when our HouseGuests are most wide awake and having fun, talking about strategy and playing the game. People are going to see quite a bit.”
The majority of the shows on Big Brother: After Dark are live with certain exceptions. During the ninth season of Big Brother the April 21, 2008 episode was pre-recorded from earlier in the day due to an eviction and endurance competition still in progress at 9 PM PT/12 AM ET. A similar situation occurred during the twelfth season on September 7, 2010 when the remaining HouseGuests were woken up early specifically to pre-record that night’s show. This was to avoid spoiling which HouseGuest had been evicted earlier in the day during a taped eviction episode. There have also been cases where a still scene and the program’s theme music are played instead during portions of the series (such as competitions and tense situations between houseguests) the producers might rather show exclusively within the CBS broadcast, along with removing segments of HouseGuests humming or whistling copyrighted music, which is still a chargeable “performance” of a work under ASCAP/BMI guidelines.