So, did anyone watch “Ready for Love”? It was an NBC matchmaking reality TV show that ended recently and was apparently canceled because only I am sappy enough to watch a series about three wildly successful and ridiculously handsome men who are each matched with twelve somewhat successful but still ridiculously good-looking women and have nine weeks to whittle down the group one-by-one to find the least-unfunny and least-unsmart of the group. Which is what love is.
I secretly thought it was a pretty great show. In that it’s teeeeerrifying to see grown people admit to what dating’s really like when you’re superficial. The matchmakers would meet with the women before their dates with the men every week and give them gems of advice such as:
• “Men don’t like humor. If you find yourself about to say something funny, keep your mouth shut and instead find a way to touch him.”
• “Never do anything to emasculate him. If he offers you his coat, take it whether you’re cold or not so he’ll feel like he’s taking care of you.
• “Flirt with your eyes. But also make him feel like he’s at home in them. But not an incestual home. Don’t become his sister.”
I strangely don’t remember a lot of “you’re perfect just the way you are, so if he doesn’t like that, screw him and his Honduran philanthropist self”, shockingly. And yet one of the guys–Tim Lopez, the frontman for the Plain White T’s (oh, god, the unnecessary apostrophe)–somehow ended up with the least-pretty girl there in his top 2. I guess he liked her personality somehow, even though her personality seemed to me like the classic Only Pretending to Care About Love to Get a Record Deal Out of Your Reality TV Appearance.
It was pretty clear from about episode 3 who each guy was going to choose, and then we had to sit through six more weeks of the guys “wrestling” with their “feelings” for the other women. And the moment the women didn’t reciprocate those somewhat shady feelings, they were sent home. So you’re vying with 11 other women for the affection of one dude who’s telling all of you that he’s feeling the exact same feelings for you each in turn, but if you hesitate to fall in love with him in the interest of preserving your heart, you’re not putting your back into it, and you’re out. Okay.
The one brilliant move of the show was made by said Honduran philanthropist, who recognized whom he ultimately wanted to end up with when he had three women left, sent two of them home one week, and rose from underneath the stage in his glass box (this is real life) alone. He then proceeded to awkwardly but all-the-same-impressively climb the 40-foot-high structure where they line the women up at the end of each show (also real life) to be with his lady. And then they spent the finale episode just, like, hanging out together and looking pretty bored while the other guys got to make grand gestures of love to their chosen women.
But anyway. It was OBVIOUS that Plain White Unnecessary Apostrophe was going to choose this woman Sara, who was certainly pretty enough but not even in the same league as the other women, who were genuinely Miss Americas and stuff. Her features were severe, and when she smiled, she looked like a cartoon rendering of a gargoyle. She was also one of those people who isn’t fat but somehow just carries her weight badly, youknowwhatImean?
But she had this great backstory about being engaged to a guy who fought cancer for three and a half years, and she stuck by him the entire time, and that means Plain White Unnecessary Apostrophe could really count on her to stick with him through the tough times. Like when his band only has that one semi-hit. Or when he cheats on her with his cutoff-shorts-wearing friends, who call themselves the Buffalo Club and are sooooo gay together.
Week after week, I thought he was going to send her home for her pug nose, but he kept keeping her and kept talking about how deep their connection was. The world didn’t make sense, but I of course wasn’t upset about it, and I finally gave in and decided to like them together. When it got down to the final 2, I was pretty appalled at how he was clearly in love with Sara but continued to make out with Jenna, who was younger and even blonder and just all-around hotter despite her taste in purple chiffon rhinestoned dresses.
I felt pretty bad for Sara, who would be married to Plain White Unnecessary Apostrophe soon and would have to look back at the show and watch her husband enjoy this one. last. chance. to more or less cheat on her with the better-looking, more-fun woman whom he liked enough to keep around until the final 2 and would therefore live in his mind as the one who could’ve been, the one he let get away, once he gets bored with all of the cancer-fiancé deep-feelings talk.
So Tim took Sara down to the underground garden (totally real life) in the finale to reveal whether she was his pick or not, and she accidentally said something about the rest of their life together before she realized that could be pretty embarrassing if he didn’t end up choosing her, but of COURSE he was going to choose her, because he’s a sensitive rockstar and she wrote a goddamned song for him.
AND THEN HE CHOSE THE HOT GIRL.