Fantasy Time. Fantasy Worlds.
Our lovely Cupid host Brain look-Ma, no-hairbrush McFayden opens up the show wearing an open-collared black and light grey striped shirt. It looks just like one of those convict shirts you see in old movies starring Paul Newman. I wonder, does Brian feel hopelessly imprisoned by this clunker of a TV show? Is that what his shirt symbolizes?
McFayden solemnly intones “We are just one show away from the altar,” and introduces the five remaining suitors who are all wearing suit coats and/or ties. This week, Brian does not mix up their names and call Evan Renda like he did last week. I think our boy is finally getting the hang of this “host” gig thing!
Evan and Dominic both look casual and contemporary. Robert looks very classy—the man knows how to wear a tailored suit! Renda wears a suit & tie combo he bought from a street vendor in the Bronx, and Hank is the only guy without a suit coat—choosing instead to wear a yellow tie, light blue shirt and casual pants.
Next to enter is the lovely Lisa Shannon, who was evidently attacked by wild dogs in the green room. She is wearing a dark red skirt that is ripped and slashed from mid-calf to mid-thigh. Our plucky heroine has to keep smiling (it’s in her CBS contract) but she can show her pain & distress in her wardrobe.
Once Lisa is seated, host Brian check-out-my-dimples McFayden introduces Lisa’s two friends and official Cupid Helpers—Laura and Kimberly. (Note Cupid Helper is not to be confused with Hamburger Helper, although both are useful with loose meat.) Where was I? Oh yeah—Laura and Kimberly…
Every week, Brian lays a new & insulting characterization onto Lisa’s helpers. I lean forward in anticipation. What will he call them this week? Laura is wearing a gorgeous black leather dress. (Say what you want about this girl’s attitude—I want her wardrobe!) Anyway—in deference to her all-black look Brian calls her Darth Vader. I cringe and wait for him to do that spooky Darth Vader, in-and-out breathing thing—but we are spared. TG!
Kimberly is introduced as having “more lip than Mick Jagger.” Brian is reaching hard here—Mick Jagger? I am busy looking at Kimberly’s hair. After weeks of flat, flat hair Kim is suddenly going for the young Shirley Temple look. I think they used to be called banana curls. Either that or she just didn’t have time to comb when she pulled out her rollers. She’s wearing clothes again, but they are not worth mentioning.
Next McFayden introduces the usual segment from the Cupid house, where we can eavesdrop on our happy-go-lucky, back-stabbing misfits as they interact with each other. Today, they are having a Toga Party! With visions of the movie ‘Animal House’ dancing in my mind, I am so hopeful I will not be bored to death this week. Not. It’s the same old routine. Evan and Hank hate each other. Dom thinks Robert is delusional. The only thing worth noting is that Renda looks very fetching with his hair swirled on top of his head in a loose bun. Cross-dressing must be one of those street hustler skills or something—I dunno.
Anyway, back to the stupid Cupid set. McFayden calls out this week’s two low vote getters—Renda and Dominic. After circling the drain for the past three weeks, Renda is finally booted.
And now that the show is half over, and we the viewing audience are bored to tears, host Brian kiss-my-ass-America McFayden finally explains this week’s dates. It is Fantasy Date time! “No rules—anything goes; just make her love you any way you can.” Oh yeah—before I forget to mention it—this is a 24 hour date. For those keeping track, this means a potential overnight event.
Evan Blows It Big Time.
subtitle: Lisa Blows Chunks.
First up is a nice, dressy dinner. They spend all their time talking about walls. Whose walls are higher. Who needs to work on their walls. Why people have walls. I keep expecting Paige Davis from Trading Spaces to jump out and help them redo their walls. Maybe Doug could lay out a nice grid, but no. Just talk, talk, talk, talk… I learn that walls are boring.
In desperation, Evan finally takes Lisa to the beach. She always talks about how fabulous their first beach date was, so that is a smart move on his part. They swim & play & get all sandy and stuff. That’s when Evan has an epiphany on how to get naked with Lisa.
“Let’s take a shower together, wearing our swimsuits, and rinse all this sand off!” What a great idea! Lisa can’t wait to get it off. We are all whisked away to an anonymous hotel room and the next thing we know, Lisa steps into the shower, kisses her finger and beckons Evan in to join her. The curtain is pulled firmly shut on the camera for their sweet, innocence little rinse-off. Oh puh-leeze! Everyone knows how fun shower sex is! Afterwards Evan beams at the camera, “I got it off! You know, the sand.”
The next morning they start out on a five hour cruise. Lisa keeps hoping that they will shipwrecked like those lucky fools from Gilligan’s Island, because it turns out our girl gets severely seasick. Puke-your-guts-out seasick. Chuck, chuck and upchuck seasick. Supposedly they are whale watching, but we are not shown any whale sightings—just Lisa traipsing back and forth to the lady’s room/slash/vomitorium. I speculate that she is still suffering aftereffects from the “innocent” shower. How much sand can you swallow before it makes you sick?
Back in the studio…
Laura gushes about all the “chemistry” she feels towards Evan. (WTF—I thought she luved Joe?) She asks Evan about his future ability to provide for a family. Maybe, she says, you can go from girl’s basketball coach, to head coach, to Olympic coach! I giggle insanely.
Kimberly still thinks he’s a player. A nice player—but a player is still a player.
Evan defends himself by telling Laura that he knows how to budget so he can support a family. (Let’s see—diddly squat divided by 2 = ?) He tells Kim that he is NOT a player. Not, not, not!
Lisa gets all the final words this week. She tells Evan that she really likes him and how he can always make the best of a bad situation—like a date who barfs on his shoes—but that he still has walls up. Those damn walls again! She thinks he is terrified that he will be chosen next week, and that he is not ready for “forever.”
Robert Works it.
subtitle: Lisa Doesn’t.
Robert & Lisa in an early date.
Robert takes Lisa to Santa Monica and makes her sweat. Well, just a little. He shows her what he thinks would be an ideal work-out for her. This is his forte, and he is probably doing a very good job, but Lisa is done working out about 2 hours before Robert lets her quit. She keeps herself entertained by grimacing and rolling her eyes a lot.
One funny scene—Robert compliments her on how good she looks and then reaches out to squeeze her muscles. At home, I flinch and giggle. On my TV, Lisa flinches & giggles. It sure looked for a minute like Robert is going to squeeze her boobs not her biceps! I kind of wish he did. I mean, Evan got to squeeze them in the shower, didn’t he? With all the crap he has had to take from the Harpies, Robert deserves to cop at least a little feel!
After the workout, Robert and Lisa split up for a few hours to “prepare” for their dinner. Robert lays on his bed and flips through Muscle Weekly magazine. Lisa crawls under her covers (in a separate room, of course), assumes a fetal position and cries herself to sleep.
Later they meet up for dinner. Robert tells Lisa what great chemistry they have and toasts a great day together. Lisa just drinks and eats. Robert finally asks her about her childhood. When Lisa tells him she was a Tomboy and always played outside, Robert responds “me too.” The audience hoots at that but I think it’s a cheap shot. After all, English is not his native tongue.
Robert orders dessert ‘to go’ for both of them, grabs an extra bottle of champagne and tries to lead Lisa to a romantic little table out on the restaurant’s dim patio. Lisa grimaces and rolls her eyes. Finally she flat out tells Robert “I want to go to bed now.”
For one glorious moment Robert thinks he has finally got lucky! Usually, when women say that to Robert they follow up by getting naked and assuming—you know—positions. Even on blind dates. But not this time. Lisa is simply, flat-out done f-ing around with Robert and his fantasy world. It’s good-night and good-bye time for the mini-Arnold.
Back in the studio…
Laura asks McFayden if she can hug Robert. No—it’s not a change of heart for Laura. She is just trying to soften her harsh words any way she can. “You’re just not getting it!” she tells him. “It breaks my heart, but you just don’t get it!”
‘Jagger lips’ Kimberly is even more blunt. “If you think that you are more than just friends with Lisa, you are delusional.”
Delusional Robert stays in character to the very end. “My heart is broken,” he tells Lisa, “but I will get over it in a year from now. Or two years.”
(McFayden spoils the poignancy of Robert’s speech by reminding him that he can always run for governor of California. What is with this whacky host? Why did Simon hire him?)
Lisa tells Robert that “you taught me a lot. I learned a workout routine, an appreciation of sailboats, and I got a great pair of mirrored shoes. We’ve come a long way, but not far enough to build a lifetime together.”
Dom Grows Up.
subtitle: Or Not.
I couldn't find a date pic of Dom & Lisa.
This photo is for all the Dom fans out there!
Dom takes Lisa hiking at Big Bear. He tells Lisa they need to just have fun together, “hang out, burp, whatever we want to do.” Burp?
Lisa admits that it is time to “see past the initial chemistry to see if there is any staying power here.”
First they get side-by-side professional massages. So even though they are together and naked there is no hope of hanky-panky. The masseuses look Germanic and very strict. There are lots of thick, white towels over both their bodies, but we do get one nice camera shot of Lisa’s butt dimples.
Later, over dinner at Madeline’s, Dominic disses Hank saying that he is ‘just looking out for Lisa’s best interests.” Yeah, right. For dessert he gives Lisa a candy necklace and starts eating it off her body. Lisa likes her dessert, but she holds back a little. Maybe she can see the candy panty package in his back pocket, or maybe it is just because she got horizontal under him on every other date. Remember the pajama date? The sofa make-out session? The only time she didn’t get horizontal with Dom was when her family was there watching.
Back in the studio…
Laura tells Dom “I’ll see you next week at the wedding, but you’re gonna be a guest!”
Kimberly tells him “I love to see you guys together, but you’re 22 and you’re not the one.” Then I think she also told him to “follow his dreams,” which seems to be her all-purpose kiss-off phrase.
Dom says something about how he is too mature enough, but he can see it is not going to fly with any of the women so he doesn’t push it.
Lisa tells Dom that it’s been fun and she can “be goofy” with him. Then she spends a couple of minutes talking about Hank! I’m thinking—‘huh? This is Dom’s date—what’s with the Hank talk?’ Dom must have really dissed Hank in his effort to pull out a last minute upset and win over Lisa.
Hank Says the Words.
subtitle: And Does the Deed.
Hank takes Lisa to a vineyard in Carmel Valley so they can both preview his dream of an ideal life to go with his ideal wife. Lisa is nervous. “After all,” she says, “we could be engaged and married in a week!”
They drink wine and chat with the vineyard owner, who tells them that life as a vintner is not a bed of roses. You have to work hard and stomp grapes in wooden vats—stuff like that. Neither Hank nor Lisa seems turned off by his description.
Later, Hank and Lisa are shown having a heart-to-heart discussion on the future. They are holding hands and touching each other a lot, but Lisa keeps her head downcast, barely making eye contact.
Hank says that as he sees it, the choice has come down to “me or Evan.” He wants some assurance from Lisa that she is his first choice. Lisa lays in her own lap as she avoids answering this question. I mean, she slumps all the way forward and looks at the ground. I’m thinking that she is not allowed by show rules to say anything like that before the last Cupid live episode. Whatever—she does not give Hank the answer he so clearly is asking for.
This conversation continues over dinner.
Hank: “Part of me wants to be there at the very end, and part of me doesn’t want to be there at all.”
Hank: “I’m terrified! It’s a big decision. I don’t take it lightly.”
Lisa: “I understand.”
All through this conversation, Lisa and Hank keep twining and retwining their fingers together. Lisa tells Hank he’s handsome. He tells her she has a good heart, and a good soul.
After dinner, Lisa and Hank enter their hotel room. No pretense of his and her rooms on this date. The camera does not follow them inside, but focuses on the closed door as we hear the following whispered conversation…
Lisa: “Can you see yourself with me?”
Lisa: “I have never felt like this!
Then, as they say in show biz—fade to black.
The next morning, Lisa and Hank exit the room together and go for a run. They watch a pair of deer cross the road and smooch a little. They seem very relaxed together. I think many questions were answered during the previous night. You know, when there was time.
Back in the studio…
Laura cuts to the chase: “I’ll see you at the wedding! Whooo!”
Kimberly: “I’ve liked you since Day One. You’re the best man up there and I hope you have a wonderful life together.”
Hank is looking very nervous as he tells Lisa, “I don’t take this lightly, but you answered my questions I needed answered. I’ll see you next week.”
Then in one of those scripted-unscripted moves, Lisa jumps out of her seat between the Harpies, runs up on stage and grasps Hank by both his hands. She looks at him nervously but intensely as she says, “When you asked me to choose on the date, I didn’t—but the answer has been in front of me the whole time. I most definitely chose you!” They hug.
It’s not quite over yet…
Lisa has now done everything she can to signal who she wants America to vote for. This would be nice place to end the episode, but no. Host Brian I-beat-dead-horses McFayden decides to trot out the four finalists and give them each 30 seconds to make one last plea for Lisa’s love.
Evan wishes Lisa future happiness and asks America to respect her choice when they vote.
Dom thanks America for voting for him.
Hank says he has had an amazing time. “America, please make sure I’m up here next week.”
Robert talks on and on, earnestly pushing himself one last time. (Clueless—thy name is Robert). “I came here wiz out you, and I guess I am leaving wiz out you. I cannot force you to feel the same vay like I do for you. I vish you all da best in life and may you haf many, many childrens.”
McFayden loses his patience and cuts Robert off, “Write her a letter!” He tells the heart-broken (or whatever) Austrian. A letter?
Then McFayden looks into the camera real sincere like, and urges America to “make sure you do the ‘right thing’ by Lisa.”
And it’s still not over…
Back from commercials, host Brian I’m-like-death-and-taxes McFayden offers us a sneak peak at next week’s show but then doesn’t give it. Instead he just mugs for the camera.
McFayden: “So Laura! I was just wondering—do you feel sorry for the guys you shaft every week?”
Laura: “Of course I do!” At least, I think that’s what she said. I was actually too busy laughing at this point to follow the host-banter crap.
McFayden: “Who knows? Next week, I could be catching a bouquet!”
What? What kind of idiot is this McFayden?
Simon! Will you please fire this moron!?!
*you get the big finale next week, lucky girl!*
IceCat is a Genius