‘I’ve always loved dating shows,’ announces Eva Langoria (executive producer of Ready For Love), ‘but lets be honest, they don’t work too well at matching people.’
I’ve enjoyed my fair share of dating shows too, but my tastes run to cheesy early nineties shows that I watched in my childhood, Blind Date being one of them. In that program a single man or woman asked three questions (carefully scripted to involve as many double entendres as the pre-watershed scheduling allowed). The format would be irredeemably naff today, but it gave me my first awareness of male/female couplings. Davina McCall’s Streetmate is another one I can remember watching
Ready For Love uses the ‘blind’ element too, so the man, in this case ‘rock star’ Tim, stands behind a screen and asks questions to women and must select each one in order of preference, leaving one last woman who must go home at this point. Except that all of these women have been carefully selected by Amanda Kelleher – in case we weren’t sure of her credentials, ‘I’m match-maker to the rich and famous, through the last twenty years I’ve been able to build the worlds’s largest match-making service.’
Got that? It turns out that match-makers are a dime – a -dozen on this show. There’s even a frankly rather creepy English chap, about whom more will follow.
The four girls, contestants, who are looking for love are presented as though on The X-factor, auditioning for Tim’s approval. Apparently they have applied for a part on the show, but I’d bet they were looking to get famous and thought that appearing on this show would be as good a chance as any. Let’s be honest, these aren’t women who should have any difficulties finding love in the real world, but maybe no-ones meeting anyone in the real world, not in the workplace, especially where political correctness means even a compliment can lead to a lawsuit.
I felt sorry for the women on this show. Tim seemed bland, undeserving of any of them. Although after listening to some of their comments, maybe they were made for each other: (Sara – realtor) “I came here for you, because after watching your video and hearing you say the words you’re not going to have your career with you at your bedside, I instantly connected with you”). The show is full of lines like that. Only Siham (her name is Arabic for love at first sight) can break through the mush, coming across as sexy and fairly human, saying she would like to give him a real french kiss and reads him poetry. Inexplicably Tim sends her home, and chooses Hailey instead (elementary teacher).
The show throws a spanner, and then the entire toolkit into the works when it brings out one of Tim’s exes, who feels that now is the last chance for her to declare her love for him. The show lost all credibility right there, and sunk to new levels of cruelty when it set the girls up in a house together, like a harem in which nobody had sex with anybody else.
“I have never been on a date with nine girls,” said Tim. No shit. In case I haven’t made it clear, the show has three matchmakers, who each select four women, and Tim must say goodbye to one of each four. That’s still nine women. Phew. that’s more than most men date in a lifetime, I’ll bet.
Matchmaker Matt, ‘we care about emotion not logic’ uses some kind of NLP to get the women to bring out who they are and get Tim to fall in love with them. Make no mistake, this is big business and has made him a lot of money. A lot of money for some fairly dubious advice. If there’s one piece of wisdom people used to give for those looking for love its to be yourself. But what if yourself is a total loser? In other words, you shouldn’t be yourself, but the self you think is most likely to attract someone. Its simple really.
Ready for Love is an American reality matchmaking competition television series on NBC. The series premiered on April 9, 2013, at 9/8c and airs every Tuesday at 9–11 pm ET/PT. The series is hosted by Giuliana and Bill Rancic.
You have been warned