Welcome to the premiere of More to Love, a show that professes to stand up for those average woman and show that they deserve love too. Unfortunately, the better part of the first episode of this plus size Bachelor clone will be taken up with every one of these woman bawling their eyes out about how they’ll never find a date / have a relationship / be worthy of love because of their size. Way to hammer home that positive message, Fox. While I’m at it, why is it necessary for everyone’s height and weight to be shown, along with their names? I’m guessing they don’t do it on The Bachelor because we average women would want to jump off a building if we saw that some of those girls weigh less than an 11-year old. For the record, this is an equal opportunity show: they give us Luke’s stats as well (6’3”, 330 lbs – about 100 pounds more than most of the ladies….ahem).
Before the ladies arrive at the mansion, which I must say looks suspiciously like every other mansion we see on reality TV, Luke arrives to meet the show’s host, Emme. For those not in the know, Emme is considered by many to be the first plus-sized supermodel. Whatever size she is, Emme is fabulous and stunning. Luke probably wishes she was one of the girls he could choose from.
We’ll be inundated with weepy women in a minute so, before that happens, let’s get to know our boy, Luke. A 26 year old real estate investor from Santa Maria, California, Luke has had his heart broken because of his size. He loves to eat and he’s especially fond of grilled meat that’s (as he tells the women later) thick and juicy. For the record, there was no porn music playing when he said that. Luke tells Emme that he doesn’t really have a type: all women are beautiful. It’s how a woman carries herself and who she is as a person that matters to him. I hate to be a cold, cynical bitch, but doesn’t it feel like he’s reading off cue cards? So he likes curvier women. I’ll bet not one of the 15 he keeps tonight is homely. I’m just sayin’.
Why Don’t They Give These People Name Tags?
We’ve seen this all play out before, only on a (and I seriously apologize for this one) a smaller scale. It’s the arrival of the potential soul mates in limos. Luke stands out in front of the mansion to meet each of them. There are twenty women and, really, at this point the all blend together. Let’s just say that more than half of them cry to the camera about how they’ve been passed over by men because of their weight. I’m also not digging the wardrobe situation. Ladies, just because you’re proud of your body doesn’t mean that a size 18 can wear the same dress a size 2 can wear. Seriously. Wardrobe aside, almost every one of these women is attractive and Luke seems pretty pleased about the situation. Of course, we’re at the beginning of the whole journey and no one is letting their freak flag fly just yet.
Inside, the women all gush about Luke like he’s a plus-sized George Clooney. Soon enough, Luke has met all twenty of the women and Emme has brought him inside for the cocktail party / desperation parade. Luke tells the ladies that he knows that this is a big step. They’ve all (and he’s including himself) been judged on their size, but he thinks they’re all gorgeous. Still, he’s looking for someone who’s beautiful inside.
Luke then pulls out a box with twenty diamond rings in it. We don’t see a Tacori or Neil Lane logo on it, so I’m imagining they bought these rings at Walmart ($24.99, natch). Each woman will get a diamond ring from Luke as a promise to them that he will open up and get to know them from the inside. By accepting the ring, the ladies are promising they will do the same. There’s no big ring-giving ceremony here. They all just line up and get a ring like they’re at a junior high graduation. Many of the ladies gush about how they’ve never gotten jewelry like this. Man, he’s not going to have to do much of anything to impress these chicks, is he? Make him work for it, girls!
Desperation on Parade
The cocktail party starts in earnest and here’s another difference between this and that other dating show: they’re actually feeding the women! This makes me a little sad because it means we’re going to miss out on the ubiquitous slobbery drunk girl in the first episode and that’s my favorite part. Luke spends a little time getting to know the ladies and so do we. I still don’t know all the names and the producers didn’t help me out. Magali, a 24-year old teacher from L.A. tells Luke about the last guy she dated. Apparently, he gave her crap about her weight. Luke sympathizes and says all the right things: that guy obviously didn’t deserve her, he says. Another girl tells Luke she quit her job to be on the show.
Throughout the evening, the ladies and Luke talk about food: his favorite foods, their favorite foods, it’s like a show on the Food Network. Nice stereotyping, folks. All fat people care about is food. Just like all thin people care about is alcohol… at least in a world created by Fleiss. It’s clear the lack of alcohol – or at least the presence of food – is resulting in a noticeable lack of crazy. Sadly, not one girl whips her feet behind her head, loses a falsie or bites a beer can in half.
For those keeping track, Anna, a plus-size model from L.A., gets the first (but not the last) kiss of the night. Goth girl, Bonnie (25 years old from Portland, OR) gives us her theory on getting a man. The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach and then his pants….but you go for the stomach first because that’s classier. Uh-huh.
Meanwhile, Melissa (21, a nanny in Beverly Hills) confesses to Luke that she’s never been on a date. He compliments her eyes and then gives her his coat. He practically ovulates on the spot. She tells us that this is her one chance at love. She really said that and it really makes me sad.
Like Water Ballet, Only Not
Well now, what do we have here!? Apparently, someone had a little too much to drink…or they’re just normally blessed with bad judgment. Either way, it’s a slam dunk for the producers. Danielle (25, from L.A.) decides that the best way to get Luke’s attention is to dive into the pool in her party dress. Yes, nothing says sexy like wet, clingy chiffon and runny mascara. Luke is just as puzzled as I am. He doesn’t join her. Bonnie rolls her eyes, calling Danielle’s move a little “too desperate.” The party continues and Danielle continues to loll around in the pool, even hopping out and doing a cannonball back in.
Soon enough, the party’s over, so-to-speak. Emme calls everyone together and tells them they must now surrender their
engagementpromise rings and place them in a bowl. Cue the stricken looks. No one wants to give back the ring. I half expect them to call security to get he rings off of these girls. Tonight, only 15 of them will be receiving their ring back from Luke.
Luke tells the ladies he had a great time and then goes off to decide which five he’s going to give the boot. After this first elimination, the fifteen remaining women will move into the mansion with Luke.
Without much build up, Luke arrives and starts passing out the rings. They’re all beautiful and he’s honored to be there. The future Mrs. Conley could be in that room. You know, or not. He calls the fifteen keepers up and then asks each “Will you wear this ring?” Here’s who gets a ring:
Before that final ring, Emme steps forward to point out to those who can’t count that there is only one ring left. The remaining five ladies look crestfallen. Luke says he’s not happy about eliminating the girls, but he says goodbye to them anyway. The episode ends with a group hug and a preview of the upcoming season.
This season: Lots of kissing, crying, whining, crying, talking about weight issues, CRYING, cat fights (hurray!) and a proposal.