Miesha Tate was shocked to win Celebrity Big Brother by a landslide. ET’s Nischelle Turner spoke with the 35-year-old champ following her big win, and she revealed why she was surprised to nab every vote but one when she faced off against her ally, Todrick Hall, in the finals.
“I was very surprised. I thought it was gonna be four and four. I was just trying to predict how I thought everybody was gonna vote,” Tate told ET. “… The thing about being stuck in that bubble for the entire 28 days is we have no clue what the rest of the world is seeing, what their perception is. We don’t know anything… had no idea, so that was very surprising to me.”
Third place finisher Cynthia Bailey, who cast the only vote for Hall in the finals, was likewise surprised by the lopsided finish.
“I figured they’d make it to final two. They were a dynamic duo,” Bailey told ET of Tate and Hall. “… Her and Todrick were tight. They made every decision together. They were the same person, so I was confused when I went on stage to meet my stone-faced cast. I hadn’t seen anything. I’m like, ‘Wait, what is going on?’… I was surprised Miesha had most of the votes. I thought it’d be a tie or it’d be close.”
What Tate and Bailey didn’t know, though, is that Hall had been the villain in the house throughout the season. Bailey told ET that she would’ve “100 percent” changed her vote if she’d been privy to that information.
As for Tate, she explained, “I didn’t know anything about Todrick coming into the house… but from what I understood when I started to understand is this is a version of us, but not necessarily how we’d play it in the real world. It is a game and there is an objective and sometimes lying or being deceiving is a part of that game. It’s a social experiment.”
After Tate and Hall formed their alliance, Tate admitted that she “couldn’t believe” they weren’t targeted by the other houseguests.
“I was like. ‘There’s no way that we are keeping our butts off the hot seat this entire season,’” she recalled. “I’m new. I came in, I was like, ‘I don’t really know what my strategy is, but I guess I just gotta play hard and try to win everything and just stay as in control as I can.’”
“I was very up front with everybody,” Tate added. “I was like, ‘If I’m targeting you, you’re gonna know it. If I’m not, you’re gonna know it.’ Maybe they were like, ‘We are gonna trust the devil we know.’ Maybe that’s what it was.”
The pair formed a friendship, one Tate remains grateful for.
“Todrick gave me an opportunity to see a viewpoint of a different walk of life,” Tate explained. “I may have not been fortunate enough to have that understanding if it weren’t for Todrick being willing to be vulnerable and explain a different side, and for me also to humble myself enough to say, ‘You know what? That’s a fair point. I would have never had that understanding if you didn’t point it out.’”
“I just felt connected to him. For whatever reason I was drawn to him. I feel blessed that we developed this relationship inside the house,” she added. “When I make a commitment to someone, I’m a very loyal person. I like to pride myself on that. I’m a woman of my word…I think we made a good duo.”
Tate supported Hall in turn, even after Hall admitted to being a super fan of the series. For Tate, that reveal explained Hall’s choices during gameplay.
“I think he felt very comfortable about how the game could be played, which means it could be played socially many different ways,” she said. “I was kinda like, ‘Wow, I had no idea.’ I think we played the social game really hard… I love Todrick. I think he’s very genuine and a great person. I hope that people aren’t being too harsh on him.”
Now that the competition is over, Tate is trying to process her big win.
“I was like, ‘This is not real. I am gonna wake up tomorrow and I’m still gonna be in this house and I have yet to win this thing,’” she said of her reaction to her victory. “It’s still taking me a minute to process that this is actually done, and I have won Celebrity Big Brother.”
As for what she’ll do with her $500,000 prize money, Tate said she plans to “treat her kids to something.”
“I just want to buy them some toys. I want to let them know that I love them, and [that] I didn’t just disappear for no reason,” she said. “This is all about them, because they really are my driving force.”
When it comes to what she’ll take away from the show, Tate said, “I learned that I am human.”
“I know that sounds silly, but I feel like people look at me and think… ‘She’s a machine. She is a robot.’ A lot of times I hold myself to that expectation too,” Tate explained. “I put a lot on my plate coming into this house… There came points in there where I was like, ‘I’m not able to do all of this. I’m going to implode. I’m not a machine. I’m going to have a weak moment right now.’”
“You’re just riding a roller coaster for 28 days,” she added. “It was so challenging in so many different ways that I was not prepared for… It was way tougher than I could have ever imagined.”
All of it was worth it, though, as Tate was able to show her daughter that anything is possible.
“She is my strength in all of this,” Tate said. “I just wanted her to look at Mommy and be like, ‘Mommy can do it, I can do it.’ Just to know that this world is her oyster and she can do whatever she wants, so I hope that I did that.”