Okay, this is the 2nd episode, air date 8/4/09.
The show starts out with some FACTS: The average woman on a dating show is a size 2 (I’m assuming the accompanying bikini footage is from “The Bachelor,” since it’s produced by the same guy). The average American woman is a size 14. We see one of the “More to Love” girls in a one-piece bathing suit, looking kind of wistful.
There’s a montage of scenes from upcoming episodes, I guess. They’re giving the whole season away too soon! Helicopters! Swimming pools! Shiny dresses! Spoiler alerts galore.
More to love is going to have MORE DRAMA, MORE EMOTION… more rings. My goodness.
The names are taking a little while to come back to me, or I might be describing these montages in more detail. Okay, I remember Melissa and Malissa. That’s two. Oh yeah, crazy pool-jumping Danielle. Hip, edgy Bonnie. I’m getting my groove back.
Emme walks into the house. “Ladies! Are you ready to go on your first dates with Luke?” The girls all cheer, and I’m tickled that Emme is dressed like a normal person in pants and a short-sleeved orange shirt. Now THAT’S a host I can get behind. (Also, didn’t they already go on their first “dates” last week? I guess those didn’t count?)
Luke is taking the girls on two different group dates, and the girls get to pick the groups. Anna and Malissa A are the team captains. Melissa interviews that she’s nervous because she was always picked last growing up, and it hurt her self esteem. She thought that people liked her, but they she wasn’t picked or didn’t get invited to parties, and she knew how they really felt. SAD! I have totally been there, and it sucks. She’s worried that this is the moment where she’s going to realize that nobody likes her.
Kristian says that she did the math that two teams from 15 girls wouldn’t be even. Wanna bet that the odd girl out gets a special date? Melissa (“Mel”) gets picked fourth, and she’s really happy. Christina ends up being the odd girl out, because the girls think she’s a snob. As I guessed, they’re celebrating the last pick. Christina gets the alone date with Luke.
Malissa’s group is going on a nighttime harbor cruise (which I know as soon as I hear the clue, but the girls don’t seem to realize until they get to the dock). Kristian interviews that she’s “smitten” and thinks Luke is “the bees knees.” Also, she “would have been happy on a rowboat.” She’s adorable! Heather interviews that she’s never been on a romantic first date, and that she had butterflies in her stomach. Um, any date you go on with seven other girls can’t be THAT romantic.
Uh oh, drama! Heather doesn’t feel good. She goes to the lower level and barfs her brains out off the side of the boat. Luke wrings his hands and says, “I feel so bad for her.” Everyone just stands around awkwardly and listens to the sound of her vomiting. This is HILARIOUS. And I wonder if they put ipecac in her champagne? These are the producers of the Bachelor–they know how to fabricate compelling drama. Luke says that he wants to go over to her, but knows that she probably doesn’t want him to see her all barfy. Good call, but it’s also an easy out.
Poor Heather is crying over her ruined date. Malissa interviews that another girl is out of the way. “Watch out ladies–I got my eye on the prize.” As if she actually had anything to do with Heather’s defeat. (Unless she really did pack some ipecac.)
Luke feels bad that Heather is sick on the couch, but he’s still glad to meet everyone else. As team captain, Malissa A feels that she ought to take charge. She interviews that she’s here for Luke, and doesn’t care about befriending the girls. Wow, Malissa seemed sweet last week, but this week she’s pinging my bitch-dar like crazy. Malissa says that last night she wasn’t sure if Luke was being his real self. He says that he was, and they kiss. “He makes me feel like I’m that size 2 supermodel,” she says.
They dig into a delicious steak dinner! Bonnie eats her bread and says, “I enjoy bread.” I love Bonnie. Kristian interviews that she questions Malissa’s motives. Malissa gained her weight after high school, and Kristian points out that Malissa didn’t have to deal with the heartache of growing up fat. Kristian lists a bunch of her childhood heartaches: she couldn’t fit behind desks or buckle her airplane seatbelt, and I’m kind of surprised because Kristian doesn’t seem THAT big. “If you really think that you are better than me because your body is smaller than mine, then you shouldn’t be here at all,” Kristian says.
“Wow, there’s prejudice between the fatties,” Roomie says. “Who was born fat and who was made fat!” True story. The more you know!
Meanwhile, Heather is sobbing on the couch. Poor Heather!
Kristian and Luke sit alone eating dessert. Kristian says that feels “like a little kid on the first day of school” around Luke. (She loves similes. Last week she said she felt like it was Christmas). Luke tells Kristian that she has a sweet aura, and Kristian interviews “Luke loves me for me.” Okay, he likes her. But LOVE? Come on Kristian. He’s known you for two days, and there are fifteen girls. Luke interviews that Kristian melts his heart when she says that he’s the guy she’s looking for, in front of the other girls. Suddenly his voice sounds just like Eugene Mirman’s voice, to me. More to Love!
Luke kisses Kristian on the cheek. So far Malissa wins in the kiss dept.
Luke wants to make sure that everyone is having a good time, so he goes downstairs and wakes up Heather, who is “snoozing so cute there on the couch.” Aww, this is why I like Luke. He even wants to hang out with the barfer! Luke interviews that Heather is “such a trooper.” He sits on the couch with his arm around her, and they chat. Heather has dated before, but all the guys lied and cheated. “I just want to know a guy’s dating me for me, and tells me what he wants,” Heather says, and she seems really level-headed about the whole situation. I really like her.
Heather interviews that her friends are all in love, and every time she thinks she found a great guy, he lies or cheats. “But Luke is definitely not that guy.” (Unless you count dating 15 girls at once as cheating.) She’s never dated a guy who was bigger than her before, and she feels comfortable with Luke.
This is what I love about Luke: He took the time to go downstairs and talk to Heather. He even kissed her on the chin, despite her early-evening barf attack.
Kristian talks to the other girls about how her kisses with Luke are progressing, and Malissa is very smug because she’s already had the full enchilada. She is “not worried about going home.” “I don’t care about my team,” she says. “Bye girls!” So much for that whole “if I’m picked I’m liked” theory.
Kristian interviews that she was the fattest girl in school, never had a boyfriend, and thought she was going to be alone forever. We see her holding Luke’s hand and giggling like a schoolgirl. “Then I met Luke.” Oh God, all but one of these girls are going to get their hearts SHATTERED.
Back at the house, the ladies have a note from Luke. It’s Christina’s alone-date night. “This could determine if I’m staying or I’m going,” Christina says, and… duh. Of course it will.
Melissa interviews that she’s jealous of Christina’s one-on-one date, because she’s never had a date. Now I bet she wishes she’d been last pick! Melissa cries and says she’ll do “whatever she can” to get a date with Luke, and I hope that there aren’t any sharp knives in the Manse of More. These girls hellbent on victory!
Christina comes out all dressed up for her date. Her dress is very Forever 21 (or whatever the plus-sized equivalent is). “All he has to do is look at me and be like, I’m keeping her,” Christina says. (Christina actually is fairly annoying, by the way. The other girls weren’t making it up.) “That’s what the five girls who went home said,” Lauren reminds her. ZING for Lauren!
“Lauren’s got her eyes on the prize, so much so that she’s really not looking to make friendships with any of the girls,” fitness trainer Mandy says. If you only knew, Mandy! So right now, Mandy is the only girl who hasn’t interviewed that she’d cut throats to win. (Also, Mandy looks great in her swimsuit. I mean, she’s a fitness trainer. Is she a ringer?)
Luke interviews that Christina’s “body’s so bangin’.” That’s why this is “More to Love” with Luke Conley, and not “Shot at Love” with Daily Binge. He and Christina get on a private jet. “In the case of an emergency, you can always use me as a flotation device,” Luke says. Ha!
Christina interviews that because she’s a bigger girl, she’s never had a date like this. UM, yeah, because size 2 girls fly on private jets on their first dates ALL THE TIME. No big. She hopes that she and Luke will be “lip to lip, all night.” Did anybody check to make sure that Luke and his girls don’t have cold sores? If so, they’re all going to get a nice little consolation prize… that keeps on giving.
Back at the manse, the girls sit by the pool and Kristian blathers about Luke. Arianne, who also looks adorable in the pool with her hair pull up under a hat, interviews, “Kristian talks a lot about Luke. It’s fucking horrible.” And then she laughs, almost maniacally. Ha.
Christina’s only 23? And she’s not even the youngest. She mentions that a guy she dated cheated on her. What’s up with these girls getting cheated on? Accordingly, she has trust issues. I find it weird that these girls with trust issues would all want to date this one guy at once. It’s basically sanctioned cheating, after a certain point. Christina thinks this is her chance to open up again and trust somebody. But eventually that somebody will probably reject her on national television. Beware!
Like all of the girls, Christina doesn’t worry about her weight with Luke, and feels “comfortable” with him. Luke kisses Christina, but Malissa is still the winner of the deepest kiss award.
Back at the manse, the girls discuss Christina. Lauren thinks she ought to go home. “Well, she puts on a good show, y’know? She acts nice,” Bonnie says, while eating what I think is a piece of pizza. She interviews that Christina is like the smelly kid you have to stand next to during class pictures. Has anybody else noticed how many of the metaphors people use around the Manse have to do with childhood or school? There’s a lot of middle school bitchiness up in here.
Luke and Christina go up to a suite and Christina is eager to kiss. Ah, the innocence of “More to Love.” Luke’s Christina-kisses rival the caliber of his Malissa-kisses. “It felt like he was already my boyfriend,” Christina says. “I didn’t want this night to end.” Despite the good date, she’s still worried about being sent home. Luke interviews that he’s not sure if he’ll be able to connect with Christina on a deeper level.
Another note from Luke! Team Anna is going swimming for their date. Jaws drop! “The thought of going on a first date in a swim suit is a little bit mortifying,” Lauren interviews. “You’re completely exposed.” (By the by, Lauren looks totally Bachelor-thin in her interviews.) “I don’t do bathing suits,” Melissa says. “Much less on a first date.” She starts to cry. “This is literally my first date, and I’m really bummed that it has to be something I’m not comfortable with.”
The girls pile into a limo, which whisks them away to… another Manse. Luke takes the girls to the bar. He understands the intimidation of swimsuits, and wants to put the focus on himself rather than the swimsuit issue. He realizes that some of the girls are much more uncomfortable than others, and he tries to put them all at ease by taking off his shirt and jumping into the pool. “My philosophy on my body is why have the six pack when you can have the whole keg?” he says.
I guess the water in the pool is warm, but it looks like an overcast, rainy day. We had a lot of those a few months back when they were filming this.
Seeing Luke’s comfort with his body makes Melissa feel better.
Back at the Manse, Kristian goes into Luke’s “bachelor pad,” which I think is the pool or guest house? She says that she wants to leave Luke a love note, which Bonnie calls, “A creepy I-was-in-your-house note.” “Please leave him a creepy “I-was-in-your-house note,” she calls to Kristian. “Please. It will add to your intensity.”
Mandy and Melissa both leave notes on his door, with little flowers.
Back at the pool, Lauren swims right up to Luke. “She seems to be the aggresor in this group of girls,” he interviews. Also: Arianne is rocking a bikini! And Arianne is annoyed with Lauren.
Luke is glad to see the girls in a more casual setting. Knowing that “Mel” is so so, he plans to take her off for one-on-one time first, so she’ll feel special. This is a recipe for heartbreak! Luke asks Mel how she’s liking her first date, and she answers that she never pictured sharing it with seven girls. Haha, that would be a weird fantasy.
Mel is only 21. She’s so young! Luke kisses Mel on the lips. She had fun, but she’s not sure she’ll get a ring tonight.
Lauren is the next mini-date. She talks to Luke about how their passions in life align (entrepreneurship, family, etc), and it feels like a job interview. Luke says, “I like that,” but in a totally bedroom-y way. Lauren calls it the “‘you’re so sexy I want you’ glare.” They kiss, and maybe Arianne is watching. Arianne calls Lauren “really young,” but Luke and Lauren are both 26 (but Lauren is still a student).
Lauren interviews that if you’re here for the right reasons, you’re not focused on making friends. I’m not here to make friends! What a reality TV cliche. I like Lauren, but I’m just sayin’.
How many girls are getting eliminated tonight? I don’t know. Luke has a pre-elimination mixer. Ooh, THREE girls are going home tonight. Tattoo’ed Bonnie asks Luke what his mother would think of her, and he says that he makes his own decisions. She says that she looks tough on the outside, but on the inside she’s a ’50s housewife. (Is that a good thing?) Luke interviews that Bonnie is upfront about who she is, and is teaching him not to judge a book by its cover.
Kristian (also 26) tells Luke that he’s the perfect man. Coming on too strong? Luke says he’s going back and forth with Kristian. He has a friendship with her, but can it develop into something deeper.
Malissa says that she’s happy more girls are going home. While she says this, she’s waving a meat stick in one hand and a cocktail in the other. Ha!
Heather (22!) tells Luke that she’s worried that she’s going home because she ruined the date with her barfulousness. “You did not ruin the date,” Luke says. “Don’t even think about it that way.” Luke says that he learned a lot about her from the way she handled herself. He thinks she’s reall here to find love, and he really appreciates that about her. This time, they have a real kiss.
Lauren asks Luke if he wants the scoop on anyone. Luke says that he thinks Lauren wants to share really bad. “Get it off your chest, if it’ll make you feel better.” Lauren tells Luke that Arianne doesn’t want kids, and says that older women are less exciting. Luke seems vaguely annoyed that Lauren is trying to tell him to to eliminate. I think Lauren is sabotaging herself by trying to sabotage the other girls. Bitches and backstabbing! Not cool, Lauren. You’re out.
The girls return their rings to the Bowl of Rings. Mel’s not ready to lose the one person who ever really like her. Sad!
Emme is back, in a blue-green dress. Pretty!
Okay, eliminations. Who’s in?
Heather thinks that she’s going home. I don’t.
Anna and Amanda are in. Malissa thinks she’s going to win. And she’s in, too. Ooh, she’s wearing purple. I approve.
Christina’s in. Bonnie’s in! Okay, what’s up with these rings? Are they one-size-fits-all? Or are they engraved?
Heather’s in. I knew it! No more boat dates for you, Heather. Just to be safe.
Lauren’s in? After the backstabbing? And Danielle’s in. I feel like we haven’t seen her at all this week. Ditto for Tali.
Mel gets a ring. I’m happy and sad. Just another week closer to even bigger heartbreak!
One ring left. Kristian says that she’ll be “heartbroken” if she doesn’t get the ring. She wants a man who loves her the way she loves herself. And then she gets the ring. “He does like me!”
So Arianne, Magali, and some redhead girl are out. Luke hugs them goodbye and they walk down the “Last Chance at Love” Trail of Tears. Arianne is realistic in her exit interview about the fact that Luke is just one guy in the sea of guys. She says that she’s not trying to change herself anymore, because she doesn’t think that there’s anything wrong with her. You go, girl!
I think the potentially inspiring thing about this show is that if Luke and these girls can date, so can all of the “average” American men and women who are watching at home. Go out and find love, everybody! Don’t be scared!
Coming up: Luke asks all of the girls to the prom. Mel cries again! Stop crying, Mel. It’s getting ridiculous. Heather talks to Luke about her size, which she never did with past boyfriends. She assumed that they thought she was ugly. Come on, now I’m going to cry. There is still a lot of sadness going on!
Will you all go to Luke’s prom with me next week? Check yes or no!
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