The Barnes: Young, Dumb, and Full of . . . Lies
Young, Dumb and Full of . . . Lies, Meet My Folks: The Barnes.
We were treated to the second episode of Meet My Folks in two days, which was previously rescheduled from an earlier air-date. There were ads for contestants for future episodes, but there aren’t any more episodes on the schedule right now. As if Scott Satin and team don’t have enough twists and turns for the contestants on this show, the scheduling itself is a real roller coaster ride. After seeing the 3 guys in their 40s compete for a date with sexy mom Barbara last night, the 19 to 21 year old contestants on tonight’s show looked like babies. Mom and Dad are Cathie and Jack Barnes, with 19 year old daughter Jacqui, a tall, slender brunette with a very pretty face, as the prize.
Meet the Dates – Rude Tasks
First boy out of the limo is Randy, who says he is “Randy by name and randy by nature.” I think his parents missed the boat and should have named him Doofus. He has reminds me of a young Corey Haim, with gorgeous blue eyes and spiky blonde hair. His secret task is to hug Dad for 7 seconds.
Next week meet Tommy, with an impish grin and an early John Travolta (think Sweathog) medium brown afro. I love his hair. He reminds me of a bunch of different character actors (and Paulie Shore, if what he does is considered acting, only without the annoying “weasel” references), none of which are known for getting the girl. This kid is golden, if only he can survive the first task, which is kissing Mom on the lips upon their introduction. Tommy contemplates backing out and risking the “bad fact” but ends up sneaking in a little peck.
Finally we meet Adam, a surfer dude with wavy blonde hair who looks like Ryan Philippe, who has the unenviable task of only being able to talk about the weather for the introductions. If he stands perfectly still and doesn’t talk he looks just like Michelangelo’s David.
Everybody meets and then the guys are let off the hook with an immediate fax telling Mom, Dad and Jacqui about the Rude Tasks, right? Not exactly. Then the guys head into the “hot seat” for a little chit chat. Time passes and the guys are not let off the hook until hours later when they finally get a fax during dinner. This is where having seen the show before would actually be a disadvantage. Sneaky Satin, very sneaky. I’m keeping an eye on you.
A New Twist, The Same Humiliation
Guess what? This house has a pool and a hot tub. No, really? Yes, they do, and the beautiful singles all go for a dip. Afterwards the guys are chillin’ in their room when they get a fax to turn on their tv to see what Mom and Dad are doing. Really mixing things up here that Satin, as loyal watchers know it’s Mom and Dad who usually get to spy on the kids. Surprise, surprise, there are houseguests: the Ex-Girlfriends.
This is a new twist to have the exes meet with Mom and Dad separately. The guys watch in horror as disgruntled exes tell Mom and Dad that Tommy cheated on Alison, but the story was rather convoluted and reminded me of the famous “we were on a break” Ross & Rachel story from Friends. Brianna (who may have actually appeared on the Calderons episode of MMF 2 weeks ago, according to a couple viewers, in which case I say "Small World") reveals that Adam is a jerk who agreed to kiss an ugly girl and lead her on as a $10 dare with his friends. Ouch. Jessica says Randy is a heartbreaker who bailed on her on prom night because of some lame excuse about tearing his cornea. Yikes, if that was the real deal I think Jessica is a little hard on the guy, as she probably didn’t want to be standing next to a guy with a patch on his eye in her prom photos anyway, unless his tux happened to look like a pirate costume already, or it was an Austin Powers themed dance and Randy was Number 2. Dad’s not really thrilled about any of the guys now.
Wake Up and Jump
It’s 5:00 am and Dad is waking up the guys with a bullhorn that I assume it was set on low, as it really wasn’t any louder than Dad’s normal voice, he then loaded everyone into a van for the “mystery destination” which is sky-diving. They get all suited up and jump (tandem jumps, so they each have a trained instructor with them) and when they get done they are all thrilled and the whole group has a cute “big hug” that would make the Teletubbies jealous.
Back in the sky-diving office, the guys are being “de-briefed” by a foxy “instructor” who flirts with the guys while ostensibly verifying that they were not injured in their jumps. They don’t bother to ask Jacqui, who also jumped. Hmmm, that’s odd.
Private Dates and Mis-Fortune Cookies
Randy has the first private date with Jacqui and I’m really worried about the financial status of NBC with what passes for “dates” on this show. Randy and Jacqui ride around in the limo that the guys arrived in and smear chocolate all over each other. That’s it folks, they weren’t going anywhere in the limo, that WAS that date. Randy makes his move and kisses Jacqui and she doesn’t object, but she had an Easter bunny stuffed in her mouth, so it was hard to tell what she was saying.
Instead of having the other two dates, we are treated to videotapes of bad facts, but with a really cute presentation. Two adorable little girl scouts ring the doorbell and have boxes of cookies with cute titles like “Ore-uh-ohs” and “Bad Factaroonies” which contain a videotape for each guy.
Adam’s ex-girlfriend informs them that Adam likes pornos so much that he tried to make one starring her by videotaping them together without her knowledge. Tommy’s best friend Dustin says that Tommy made out with his girlfriend at the time and was with her while he was knocking on the door. Randy’s roommate Jason says that Randy hands over to his friends all his “leftovers” and has the great motto “ain’t no fun if the homeys can’t have none.”
Adam and Tommy shuffle around but basically fess up. Randy denies this wholeheartedly, but Dad isn’t buying it. Jacqui is very disappointed, especially with Randy. Dad tries to explain that men are dogs. Then Dad curses his chromosomes for his having a daughter who will be forced to date dogs rather than having a son who is free to be one.
The low-budget dates continue as Adam and Jacqui go “star gazing” in the yard. It’s not that terrible, there is a telescope, but Adam and Jacqui are spending more time looking at the stars in each others’ eyes than trying to make out the outline of Orion and the Big Dipper through the heavy smog of LA. As this was filmed at night and we later see “dinner” for that day, I wonder about the sequence, but then again I tried to make sense of the programming schedule for this show and decided not to bother, just accept it.
Tommy and Jacqui play “paddle tennis” which looks ping-pong on a tennis court. Tommy makes it a “high stakes” game and says the loser needs to give the winner a backrub, and then proceeds to lose. Smooth. Obviously the backrub was the producers’ idea as they have scented oil available, and I don’t remember seeing that listed as Tommy’s luxury item for the show. Oooops, wrong show, but I doubt Tommy brought it along himself. We know it’s scented because Tommy has to sniff Jacqui’s neck and comment on the scent. Tommy gets in a little kiss, and Jacqui doesn’t rear back like a horse who spotted a rattlesnake, so we’ll call it a decent date, but not Jacqui’s favorite.
Dinner and an Elimination
Just as the family was sitting down to dinner and made a toast (some with champagne and some with WATER because we’ve got some minors who can’t drink alcohol on this episode, I can’t get over how young they are), there is a special delivery of a videotape from the sky-diving school. Is it tape of the falls, to see who cried like a baby? Is it tape of the super group hug? No, it’s our friendly instructor, here to see which guy or guys took the bait and succumbed to her flirting. Tommy gave her his phone number. Adam gave her a hug and his phone number. Randy gave her tonsils a good tossing with his tongue before also giving her his phone number. Ooooops.
The video states that there is a cab waiting out front for one of the guys in 15 minutes. The Barnes’ don’t need 15 minutes. The guys know who is going, as Adam and Tommy laugh at Randy while he packs up his stuff. In the least amicable departure that I have ever seen on Meet My Folks, Dad kicks Randy out without shaking his hand because he “wasn’t worth it!” It was seriously hostile, unlike the usual sob-fests we get everytime the parents need to eliminate someone on this show. Randy doesn’t do himself any favors by claiming “I was tricked” but seriously, Mom and Dad, just eliminate him and move on, you don’t need to tell him to “Get out of my house” like that. Not a warm and friendly reality tv moment.
The next morning Mom and Dad are woken up by a videotape from Randy on their tv (filmed in the cab as he was leaving, it appears), confirming the “bad facts” about Adam and Tommy. We saw this once before this season after Stefanie left the Maloneys, and I still don’t think it adds much to the show other than the acrid taste of sour grapes. Hopefully Randy got a little cabbage for his troubles, as I’d hate to think he left the show with only a bad reputation.
Lie Detector Tests, Traditional, and Dad Barnes’ Style
With Randy’s revelations fresh on their minds, Mom and Dad are only too happy to introduce Tommy and Adam to the polygraph machine.
Do you consider yourself a player? No :down
Did you passionately kiss Jacqui? Yes :up
Did you attempt to secretly videotape women intimately with you? YES :up
Would you be faithful to Jacqui? Yes :up
Would you attempt to sleep with her in Hawaii? No :down
Did you give the flight instructor your phone # just to be polite? Yes :down
Did you enjoy kissing my wife? YES :up (Mom laughs)
Did you date your friend’s girlfriend? No :down
Did you intend to have relations with the sky-diving instructor? No :down
Do you expect a girl you date to have sex with you? No :down
Did you have sex with your friend’s girlfriend while he pounded on the door? No :down
No real clear answer for Mom and Dad, so Dad wants to take a crack at each guy himself, looking them straight in the eye. I was expecting him to take each of the boys’ wrists ala DiNero in Meet the Parents, but he didn’t. I still think it would have made for better TV. Spaghetti western music is playing in the background. Dad’s goatee glistens in the sun. I really don’t care for goatees. I think it makes Dad look like a possessed, um, goat, and he is really glaring at these guys. Note from Cali, Dad just doesn’t have the right goatee, as some men…Mr. Cali in fact, look down right sexy with a goatee. Cali and I agree to disagree about facial hair, but are still united in our dislike for Dad Barnes’ goat. I’m not sure that I wouldn’t flinch in that interrogation. Dad asks them each if they really care for Jacqui and asks Adam a follow up “why should I believe you?” indicating that he doesn’t.
Everyone’s favorite tension filled scene where Jacqui sits between the guys awaiting Mom and Dad’s decision. Mom is bawling like colicky infant in need of a good burping. Good lord, she just met these guy’s and is acting as though she’s sending one to the electric chair. Tommy’s going to Hawaii. Dad is much nicer to Adam than he was to Randy, saying he is a super guy and was glad to meet him. Dad says he thinks Tommy is more sincere about his feelings towards Jacqui. Adam says he’s glad that Tommy won because he’s a great guy. Jacqui feels bittersweet as she is probably more attracted to Adam, but she trusts her parents’ judgment.
Thanks to my collaborator, cali, for all of her humor and insights. If you want to contact the authors, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org m or email@example.com . We will post information about upcoming episodes in the forum when information is available.