Welcome back to another episode of More to Love aka The Fatchelor, as one of my fellow FoRT writers lovingly calls it. Last week, we met Luke Conley, a hefty guy looking for love, and the twenty seemingly pathetic plus-sized girls vying for his attention. I say “pathetic” not because I think larger girls can’t get dates, but because this group cries about being heavy and unlucky in love more than any group of women I’ve ever seen. Enough already.
Luke gave 5 women the boot last week and the remaining 15 ladies moved into the mansion with Luke after last week’s elimination. The morning after, we find some of them in the kitchen, already not getting along. It seems Christina has managed to irritate half of the house already. Before we get to hear how much Christina sucks, Emme arrives and calls the ladies into the living room.
It’s time for the first dates with Luke. There will be two group dates and one on-on-one date. Because these girls probably weren’t traumatized enough by the whole picking teams thing in grade school, Emme names Anna and Malissa team leaders. They pick teams, while Emme notes that there are 15 girls: one girl will be left out. As Anna and Malissa pick their teams, various girls cry to us about how awful it was to be picked last for teams growing up. Because we just learned a few minutes ago that everyone hates Christina, it’s inevitable that she’s left standing when the teams are chosen.
Jaws drop all around the room as Emme announces that they will be celebrating the last pick: Christina gets the one-on-one date with Luke. Ha! See, girls, it doesn’t pay to be mean. Christina thanks them all for not picking her as they all fume over her luck.
Feeding the Fishes
Team Malissa, which consists of Malissa, Danielle, Kristian, Bonnie, Heather, Vanessa and Mandy, will be going on a cruise at dusk. They arrive at the harbor in a limo and immediately begin drinking as they settle in on the yacht. Heather gets weepy, saying she’s never been on a romantic date. In 2.3 seconds, Heather is puking over the side of the boat. We hear it hitting the water and everything. Thanks for that, Fleiss. Heather can’t possibly be seasick: they haven’t left the dock. The girls look grossed out, but Luke just looks alarmed. He says he wants to go to her, but thinks she probably doesn’t want him there right now. Malissa – who is turning out to NOT be as sweet as she came off in last week’s episode – smirks and says “Better her than me” She then gives the traditional “I’m not here to make friends” speech. You knew someone would be saying this sooner or later.
Luke and Malissa share a moment and she coyly says she’s not sure if he’s for real. He, of course, assures her that he is not reading lines from a script: he really is this perfect. The alcohol is flowing, but in a departure from the usual dating show, these folks are actually eating too….and not carrot sticks. There’s actual bread and steak. Part of me thinks this is great, while the other part of me thinks it sucks that a show with larger people has to show them eating all the time. Again with the stereotypes. During dinner, Malissa yuks it up pretending this is her and Luke’s dinner party and the other girls are their guests. Good thing she’s not there to make friends.
Kristian rails about Malissa’s behavior and the fact that Malissa didn’t gain her weight until after high school. Malissa has no idea what it’s like to grow up fat, Kristian weeps. Heather, still feeling pukey, is laying down below deck and, of course, crying.
Luke pulls Kristian aside for some alone time to talk and (what else?) eat dessert. She admits she feels giddy around him, He says she’s a special girl and then calls her “sweet.” This is because he doesn’t realize Kristian is the designated stalker of the season. She tells us that she’s never had a guy appreciate her and says that Luke LOVES her for her. Luke tells us that he likes the fact that Kristian declares her love for him in front of the other girls. Note that Kristian only gets a kiss on the cheek.
Because Heather has missed most of this date, Luke goes to check on her. She’s asleep on the couch, which Luke calls cute. This is because he hasn’t smelled her breath. He tells Heather she’s a trooper. They sit on the couch and talk and Luke asks what a guy would have to do to sweep her off her feet. She tells him she’s been lied and cheated on and says a guy would just have to take her on some great dates. Again, these girls aren’t making it very hard for him. Heather clearly blames her weight for her dating troubles. She tells Luke she’s never dated a guy who’s bigger than she is and she likes it. She gets the near the mouth kiss.
Luke gathers the ladies and tells them he had the time of his life tonight, but the date’s over. Meanwhile, Kristian is still yammering on about growing up fat and how she never had a boyfriend….then she met Luke. Hide your bunny, dude, this could get ugly.
Wish She’d Stayed in Vegas
While Melissa whines about Christina getting the first one-on-one date and tells us AGAIN about how she’s never been on a date, Christina plays gracious and really rubs it in with the other girls. In a purple dress that resembles a potato sack with sequins, Christina smiles sweetly and calls “Don’t wait up!” as she walks out the front door to meet Luke. Luke seems to be impressed with the cleaned-up Christina and he talks about her “bangin’ body.” No word on his opinion of her personality.
For their date, Luke and Christina are jetting off to Las Vegas. Christina tells us that, because she’s bigger, she’s never been on a date like this. Seriously. Do these girls hear themselves? It’s cringe worthy. Once in Vegas, Luke and Christina go out to (what else?) dinner. While they have a heart-to-heart, we see a gigantic plate of food on the table. Christina opens up her luggage and starts giving Luke the sob story of her dating life, which seems to have involved a string of unromantic losers who cheated on her and lied to her. Now she can’t trust anyone. Honey, that has nothing to do with your size. There are multitudes of women of all sizes who’ve had that problem and they don’t go blaming the size of their ass. Sorry to be blunt, but I have a low tolerance for the whole victim thing.
Back at the house, Kristian is STILL waxing rhapsodic about Luke. I’m surprised she hasn’t started in writing poetry about him. Arianne has about reached her limit of Kristian. Meanwhile, the rest of the girls talk smack about Christina and how they can’t stand her and hate that she got the first one-on-one date….ignoring the fact that it’s their fault she’s on that date in the first place.
Back in Vegas, Luke and Christina head to a suite in the hotel overlooking the Vegas Strip. Because it’s expected, they kiss in front of the window. Luke admits they have chemistry, but he’s not sure if they can connect on a deeper level.
In a Pool Filled With Tears
The next day, Team Anna, which includes Anna, Arianne, Lauren, Melissa, Amanda, Magali and Tali, receive a note from Luke asking them to get into their swimsuits and get ready for fun. Immediately, Melissa bursts into tears over the thought of wearing a swimsuit in front of Luke. I kind of see her point. Many women aren’t comfortable wearing a swimsuit in public, but most of us don’t go into hysterics.
The girls all meet Luke – who seems aware of the trauma the girls are going through over being in their swimsuits – and he tells them he wants them to have fun today. He does what he can to take the focus away from their discomfort by whipping off his shirt and hopping into the pool. Mission accomplished. Most of the girls admit that was a good move on Luke’s part: they feel less self-conscious.
While the pool date is going on, Junior Stalkers Mandy and Kristian decide it would be a good idea to sneak into Luke’s house and leave him a little note. Bonnie shakes her head over their “creepy stalker” notes.
While some of the girls may be a bit self-conscious, Lauren definitely isn’t. She climbs all over Luke in the pool like he’s a jungle gym. Later, they have time alone and she does the hard sell, talking about how alike they are. They kiss and she seems to think she’s sealed the deal. Because he knows Melissa is having the toughest time with this situation, Luke takes her aside for one-on-one time. He tells her she doesn’t need to be afraid – it’s the same speech he’s given her before. At what point does this insecurity start to be really annoying (for him, I mean. I’m already annoyed)? I guess we’ll have to watch and see.
Last Chance Cafe
It’s time for the desperation parade that is the pre-elimination cocktail party. The girls will all attempt to make a connection with Luke so they don’t get eliminated. Three will be going home tonight. Luke tells us that he never thought eliminations would be so difficult.
Luke spends some time with Bonnie, who asks what his mother would think of her and her tattoos. He replies that his mother trusts his judgment. Bonnie says that she may look tough on the outside, but on the inside, she’s more like a 1950’s housewife. Is that good thing? Kristian is at it again, telling Luke she never thought she’d experience love at first sight. She calls Luke “the perfect man” and says she could be falling in love with him. Oh, Luke. Run. Run far, run fast. Luke wonders if will be able to develop a deeper connection with Kristian. Considering that every time he spends time with her she does nothing but blather on about how great he is, I’d say that’s a valid concern.
Heather worries that she ruined the cruise date and is going home. Luke says he learned a lot about Heather by how she handled that situation. Lauren spends time with Luke and, instead of taking time to get to know him, asks if he wants the scoop on any of the other girls. He doesn’t look too enthusiastic, but tells Lauren that she can go ahead with the dirt if she feels she has to. Lauren tells Luke that, in addition to being, like, old enough to be his mother (for the record, she's 37), Arianne doesn’t want children. Vanessa is older too. He tells Lauren that he knows how old Vanessa is and her age doesn’t bother him. Lauren says that older women just aren’t as exciting and they definitely don’t want to do things like bungee jumping or swimming. Ah yes, swimming: the activity of young thrill-seekers everywhere.
In no time at all, Emme appears with the Bowl of Doom, instructing the girls to deposit their rings. Only twelve of them will be getting their ring back.
This week, the girls who get rings are:
Malissa – she says that she’d be surprised if she wasn’t the last girl standing
Lauren the Narc
Melissa - she’s still crying about being dateless and unloved
Kristian gets the final ring and I throw things at my TV.
Emme tells Arianne, Vanessa and Magali to say their goodbyes and go.
Next week: As if the bathing suits weren’t traumatic enough, Luke is throwing the girls a prom. Yes, because there’s nothing better for a heavy girl than to remember the trauma of a) not getting asked to the prom or b) having to by a big ugly prom dress because there aren’t (or at least weren’t when I went to prom) any big pretty prom dresses.