Air Date: 25th October 2012
Host: Bernard Curry
Beauties: Alin, Chontelle, Greta, Jessica, Kim, Kristy, Millie
Geeks: Chard, Cody, Dane, Jason, Nathan, Rich, Yiran
Synopsis: A wrestling challenge for the guys, an etiquette challenge for the girls. All very cliché and predictable, though always at the very least entertaining. I guess that is why they chose this week to drop a bombshell to shake up the elimination process.
Clocking in at just over an hour, this episode actually feels like it was shorter than in previous weeks. I get the impression watching it this week that the formula is starting to wear a little thin. It remains entertaining, as you get to know the personalities in the mansion and recognise characteristics in both beauties and geeks that one can relate to, but fourth time in, and I must admit in this episode I got a little bored.
The first challenge was for the geeks, and really not all that different compared to previous episodes this season, let alone in comparison to challenges from the last four years. Their toughness was once again put to the test, this time in the wrestling ring. Humour was milked out of the outrageous costumes that the geeks had to wear, and then there was the obvious miserable failure associated with amateurs facing professionals (if any of it was real, this is wrestling after all!!).Only one geek was half-convincing, and that was Chard, who pretty much looked the part based on his hair alone. Subsequently he was the successful contestant in the challenge, and rightfully so. He has succeeded through to next week, Dragging Millie along with him.
Similarly predictable, the ladies had some challenges testing their skills at etiquette. They greeted June Daly-Watkins at the door of the mansion wearing almost nothing. These girls are a little clueless at times, yet I find it hard to believe they would ever answer the door like that, and as a group. It seemed like the opening moments of a porno flick… all they needed was the well-hung pizza delivery boy or pool cleaner. My point being, the moment was so staged that it was at the point of being ridiculous. Getting to the challenge itself though, there were some amusing moments observing the ladies trying to maintain civilised conversation, and then trying some more refined cuisine. I can understand hesitance to eat escargot, but the other delicacies on offer of oysters and caviar seemed like ridiculous choices for a challenge. Perhaps that says more about my tastebuds than the quality of the challenge, but I was shouting at the TV hearing these flavours being promoted as difficult to eat. In the end, Alin took out the challenge making herself and Dane safe.
There were moments focussing on the beauties and geeks themselves, but all of it seemed general filler to me. Rich and Greta remain strong, though exceedingly soppy. Dane has an interest in Millie but won’t make a move. Nathan and Jessica discussed their friendship and how far it will go. Out of all three, I think Jessica was the most mature of the potential mansion residents to look at partnering up. She made no commitment, and is keen to keep her new friend regardless. The shared moment between her and Nathan was the only one I could actually bear to watch.
The successful couples put forward Jason and Kristy, and Nathan and Jessica as the two couples that could be eliminated this week. Then Bernard has a Surprise….. The couple to leave would be nominated by the other couples, Survivor style. This for me was a change to the formula perhaps come about as two popular couples were nominated, and this move could create drama. It did, but as a viewer it actually went a little way to turning me off the show.
Nathan and Jess were nominated, and though the cynical side of me is tempted to say that it is because Nathan does not need the money, he does seem to have developed in the house, and he is a strong personality. It may also be related to the fact that Jason is a much more vibrant personality to be around, so his popularity in that sense probably saved him.
Though I intend to finish reviewing these episodes each week, I do wonder whether I will bother again next year. This program is starting to show signs of wearing thing, “like butter spread over too much bread” (Bilbo Baggins). I find I am wanting to enjoy the show more than I actually am. It is proving a pleasing, though not an engaging way to spend an hour of my week.
The producers are trying to mix things up a bit, but as the show continues and gets more repetitive, I wonder more how well the show benefits the contestants in the ways that it claims. The geeks are paired with the unattainable beauty and coached for a number of weeks, whilst the geeks aid the beauties intellectual development. Whilst I do believe the geeks assist the beauties, I wonder how well the advice the geeks get will aid them in the long-term. Having once been a similarly insecure geek, even though perhaps nowhere near as bad as some of these specimens admittedly, it takes finding an inner strength for lasting confidence. That comes from within, and no amount of teaching in the ways of being cool or tough will help that. If it doesn’t come from inside, you are just doing what others tell you to, and not being true to yourself. I am still as much of a geek as I ever was, I am just much more social than I was in the early years of high-school. All that has changed is I do not hide who I am. Someone to teach the geeks that lesson will be so much more beneficial than what this program offers.