'More to Love': Big women, big dreams
Tonight on "More to Love," I am uncomfortable with how much stock the women seem to be putting into a reality show.
Just to warn you, this is the first episode so the recap is long. There are a lot of women and I like to touch on every contestant, at least initially. Also, I have some thoughts to share about this show before the recap.
First, I'm torn on the concept. On the one hand, reality TV show women are usually one of two things: the crazy old lady (and "old" can mean anywhere from 35 to 85 years old) or they are super-skinny and have enormous boobs. So I support that there is a program showcasing plus-sized (average-sized?) women that isn't a weight loss show because it's saying, "Hey, these women are beautiful just the way they are."
However, it's also like how we have the Special Olympics because those athletes cannot compete against the Michael Phelpses (Phelpsi?) and Flo-Jos of the world. Like curvy women cannot hope to compete with the "gorgeous" women of "The Bachelor" (and that right there is a false premise because have you SEEN some of the women on "The Bachelor?") so we have to have a special show for them and their "handicap."
I also don't like the premise that skinny people go with skinny people and fat people go with fat people. I mean... you don't see many Black or Asian or Hispanic women on "The Bachelor" but we don't have "African-American Amore" or "Asian Sensations" or "Latin Lovers" hitting the airwaves, now do we?
Finally, I've perused the gallery of the contestants. There is a definite difference between the curvy women and the girls who are actually big. And lest you think suddenly I'm making some weird line between the curvy women and big women, all I mean is that there are two different types of women on the show. I'm 6'0 and weigh 175 lbs and I always will, because I am built like a basketball player and not a runway model. But I'm not overweight or out of shape. Some of the girls on the show fall into that category. On the other hand, some of the women on this show are big enough that you worry about health problems and stuff. I'm just saying there are two different kinds of "big" women on the show and I'm curious as to how that plays out with the Bachelor.
Now, if you've sat through my dissertation on "More to Love," on we go with the recap. We kick it off with 26 year-old real estate investor Luke. He's a big man himself, 6'3 and 330 lbs, and likes voluptuous, curvy women.
The Women Arrive
Now, for reasons passing understanding since this is NOT a weightloss show, they are putting the height and weight of each woman on the screen. Like we can't just call them plus-sized women and be done with it. But whatever. So I'm including that here in the first recap along with age and occupation and then I'm done with that.
Malissa, 26, waitress, 5'4, 170 lbs: says she's "big boned." I would so much rather call myself "curvy" than "big boned." Isn't that what Garfield always says about himself?
Christina, 23, retail, 5'6, 206 lbs: she's a bit too coquettish for my taste. "I wore my dress just for you" simper simper. Blech.
Heather, 22, insurance sales, 5'5 200 lbs: Iowa represent! But ugly dress. Luke loves it, though. I immediately question his taste.
Bonnie, 25, makeup artist 5'11, 215 lbs: she's rockin' the fishnets and seems to be lacking in the boob department somewhat. That's just unfair. Part of being a big girl is that you get the boobage.
Amanda, 22, waitress, 5'10, 235 lbs: super pretty, my favorite so far just in terms of shallow, superficial looks stuff.
Michelle, 32, photographer, 5'5, 230 lbs: she's crying already, so she has already jumped to the top of my list of favorites [eyeroll]. Also, I guess she's the cougar? She's got 6 whole years on Luke.
Anna, 27, plus-sized model, 6'2, 230 lbs: I like her philosophy, "I'm bigger than the general population and that's the way it is." Tall girls rule!
Natasha, 25, rocket scientist, 5'9, 197 lbs: she's actually a rocket scientist so she could use the phrase, "It's not rocket science" and not be speaking hyperbolically. Cool.
Lauren, 26, student, 5'9, 210 lbs: It's interesting because she looks smaller than Natasha but actually weighs more and they are the same height. Lauren is both dressed better and carries herself better and it really makes a difference. She needs to stop squealing, though.
Vanessa, 32, trial lawyer, 5'8, 194 lbs: man, with her height and stature and long red hair, I bet she goes over like gangbusters in a court room (I'm being totally serious). Also, Vanessa is another cougar.
Melissa, 21, nanny, 5'6, 220 lbs: she's young and says "awesome" a lot. Hmmm.
Danielle, 25, receptionist, 5'9, 195 lbs: I can't stop staring at her scary smile and werewolf hair in her talking-head.
Mandy, 25, fitness trainer, 5'7, 180 lbs: she barely qualifies as plus-sized and she's a fitness trainer. I wonder how the other women will react to her?
Tali, 26, fashion stylist, 5'4, 190 lbs: she is absolutely gorgeous and I love her dress. Tali has just taken the top spot from Amanda.
Kristian, 26, teacher, 5'5, 225 lbs: she's 5'5? I would've guessed like 4'10. She looks like if they took a normal-sized 6'0 girl and squished her down into a 5'5 package. She also drops the "skinny bitches" first. If you love your "junk in the trunk" so much, why do skinny girls have to be bitches?
Arianne, 37, cabaret entertainer, 5'10, 190 lbs: she's one of those women who is totally normal sized up top and then wha-bam, there is her behind. I've never understood quite how that works. Also, hello 37! Rowr!
Sandy, 30, waitress, 5'8, 200 lbs: Iowa represent again! Sandy needs to ditch her skunky dye job. I hate that look. Also, her boobs could smother Luke (and of course, as I type that she tells him she can show him how to milk a cow. Oh, the jokes. They write themselves sometimes.)
Shari, 34, waitress, 5'4, 180 lbs: she doesn't look plus-sized. Also, chock up another cougar.
Magali, 24, TA, 5'7, 193 lbs: she's cute and bubbly.
Natalia, 28, recruiter, 5'10, 279 lbs: she weighs in at the biggest, though it's all relative based on height. She'd be so much prettier if she didn't bleach her hair out to a Spike-like color and learned how to wear makeup.
Luke welcomes the women and gives each of them a diamond ring as his promise that he's going to open up his heart and accept them for who they are. That's cool. Do they get to keep the diamond when they get kicked off? Because that beats the hell out of a rose. When he puts the ring on Natalia, she says, "I do" and laughs. Oh, sweetie. Let's not get all creepy right outta the gate.
Kristian gets some alone time. Man, she looks like jailbait. She also says "I could love this guy." I sincerely hope that some of these women are not so insecure and with so many body image issues that they mistake any kind of positive attention for love because then the feelings involved just get so much messier than anything that happens on "The Bachelor." Hmmm.
There's some more alone time with Heather and Michelle, some group chit-chat, some dancing, some two-on-one time with Anna and Lauren. In the middle of two-on-one time, Anna and Luke smooch while Lauren is just laying there and Luke totally dared her. C'mon, Luke. That's just bad manners.
I think Sandy's getting drunk. Iowa represent? Melissa is nervous in her alone time because she's never been on a date before. Awww. Luke gives her his jacket and holds her hand, it's really sweet, but he must just be lapping up the reactions from these attention-starved women. It's not the same for big guys as it is for big girls and I hope Luke doesn't start to annoy me because every little compliment he doles out is like a piece of bread thrown to some ducks. Like, it will really bother me if he starts to act all King of the World because these some of these women are kind-of needy.
Danielle decides she needs to "stand out," so she jumps in the pool in her evening gown. That explains the werewolf hair in the talking-heads. It draws a crowd and many of the girls hate her "desperate" stab at attention. Bonnie compares her to an otter desperate for oxygen. Meow, Bonnie. Meow.
The girls sit around laughing and bonding during the party when they can't talk to Luke and it's really delightful to watch. It's certainly a breath of fresh air after the testosterone- and alcohol-fueled ridiculousness of "The Bachelorette." Let's just say that not one woman tonight has said she wants to beat the living hell out of another one of the women, DAVE.
Malissa takes her alone time with Luke and he asks her what is "kiss" in Spanish and she says "beso" and he says, "Why don't you show me?" Way to put her on the spot. Did anybody else find him totally creepy when he did that? He then says he has to think about who to send home tonight but while he does that, he'd like another beso. Way to imply that she better kiss you or else, you jerk. I'm sorry, but that rubbed me the wrong way.
The girls have to give their rings back so that Luke can hand out the rings to the 15 girls who will be staying. Some of the girls talk about how it's like giving up your future or having to go back to your life where you're alone. Man, that is depressing. I just... I know I don't understand but it's disturbing to feel like some of these women are hanging all their hopes on this show.
Luke thanks them for coming, says they are beautiful and that he's honored to have gotten to know them. He then gives rings to Anna, Malissa (weird that the two girls who smooched him get rings first. I guess if you put out, you really do get the guy!), Magali, Heather, Mandy, Amanda, Vanessa, Tali, Lauren, Bonnie, Christina, Danielle, Arianne, Kristian (wow, I thought she was toast for sure), and Melissa.
Going home are Natalia, Michelle, Sandy, Shari and Natasha. I have to say, when the playing field is even in terms of size, physical attraction still has to be there and none of these girls were particularly pretty, in my opinion.
Well, it's a lot like "The Bachelor," only with bigger women and bigger feelings to be hurt because there is neediness and desperation and insecurity. Hmmm. What did you guys think?