Hey hey hey, ‘Gasmii!! I come at you from my new home, where I’m battling with Kabletown to get new DVRs and internets set up so I can write these awesome recaps. Let’s just say it’s been an ugly battle so far. As in, I haven’t had internet for about a week, and I just barely have cable. And my closet is still just a pile of boxes. But here I am, writing about Miss Stanger and weird people who are supposably looking for love. Did I say “supposably”? I did.
And here we go, kids, it’s Millionaire Matchmaker time!!
We get started this week with some Stanger energy calming measures. Some older woman in scarves (aren’t they always in scarves?) arrives with a toothy smile and a hug, ready to set Patti right. She pulls out some “booster pack” of bullshit, some higgledy-piggledy plastic box nonsense that’s supposedly going to calm Patti down, align all her spark plugs, or something. It looks like a Trapper Keeper wrapped around a shoe box. Supposedly, Patti felt awesome within moments of holding it. I hope the balancing instrument tells her to stop wearing light pink lipstick.
Old photo time! Okay, she’s definitely made improvements with her hair, but she shoulda left her face alone!
Also, Bravo gave us very few photos for this episode, so it’ll be a wordy recap. Sorry.
We’re supposed to notice those ads plastered to the laptops on Destin and Rachel’s desks, aren’t we? Sushi Girl? Anyone know anything about this?
Rachel kicks it off by talking of Frank, a plastic surgeon looking for love. He’s a control freak, so this should be easy, right? I wonder why he’s single??! Ew, his last name is “Style.” I’d Google him, but…no internet. Anyway, he talks of being a surgeon, of how you MUST control your environment to make things right, etc.
Frank likes to get out of bed at 5AM, every day. Even on weekends. He likes having that routine. And if his girlfriend likes to sleep in til, oh, 7 AM? That’s a problem. Because he needs to make the bed, and he can’t do that if someone’s still in the bed. Here’s an idea, genius: let HER make the bed when she gets up!
Next comes the list of characteristics Dr. Style’s potential mates must possess, which includes age, grooming, intelligence, attitudes on dining, language skills, activity level, knowing “when to speak,” not embarrassing him, and so on. I hate to break it to you, bub, but if you want someone smart, highly motivated, and attractive, she’s NOT going to kowtow to your every rule. Good luck with that!
It’s no surprise that Patti doesn’t like this guy.
Our other gem this week is an –ess, as in millionairess. Emma’s in her late 30s, British, been married three times…in other words, she’s a mess. We watch her DVD. She talks about her three kids right away, which is great, and Patti harps on her needing a makeover right away. (Her hair DOES need a hot oil treatment and a trim.) She’s wearing some very thin mesh shirt over a bra, which makes more sense when we learn that she owns pole-dancing studios.
Then we learn that she was 14 when she met the man who became her first husband, who was 30. Ew! And they got married in Vegas when she was 15! Then she was remarried at 25 to a 50 year old dude. Then she talks about something I can’t understand because of a combination of her accent and Britishisms (you know their sentence structures are different). Something about a house fire? The second husband set the house on fire or something? So she ended up divorcing him and marrying the guy who came to fix the burned up house! Or something! I don’t know!
So basically, she’s never dated before, she’s just married the guys who ended up in the same room with her on the rare days she was not married. Oh, and she makes that oft-claimed claim that she needs a man who can keep up with her. (Or was it “put up with her”?) Eyeroll.
Patti’s assessment is that Emma is all over the place, is putting way too much out there, and has masculine energy. Like, she goes out and gets what she wants, she doesn’t do the more feminine thing of holding back a little and being pursued. (Say what you want about feminism, this is a fundamental fact of being human, that men need to chase and women need to select.)
To deal with this weird energy, Patti’s not doing a traditional mixer for Em. Instead, she’ll do a two-way mirror, so they can control how much is revealed at any one moment. Or something. Patti also requires this chick to undergo a makeover.
I really wish Patti would at least stand up to shake hands with people when they come to see her. Frank comes by to chat more, and she just sits there like a rude asshole when he introduces himself. Like, his game is already over before it’s begun.
But whatever, let’s get to his extended intro. It’s in Vegas. Oh, and his last name is “Stile.” Whatever. He claims to be worth over $10 mil. He collects watches and hot cars. He’s meticulous about his body, his pool, and probably everything else. Funny, then, that he’s got two huge, slobbering dogs. Also, I bet he has a small wang.
He says the women in Vegas are “all basically retarded.” (Side note: I used to say “retarded” way too often, and it’s really not kind. I made it a New Year’s resolution a few years ago to say “ridiculous” instead of “retarded,” and I really feel like this makes me a better SexyPanda. This guy could stand to make the same choice.) He wants a female version of him, which would mean an UGLY woman. I’m sure she’s out there, but I don’t think Patti’s going to help him find her.
Back to the office. Patti asks if Frank thinks he has a God complex. He’s totally acting when he says no, and that he hates being judged by what he does for a living. He’s looking down as he says this, and you know he LOVES people judging him by what he does. Then Patti asks if he judges women he dates on their appearances, if he could fix this or that on her body. He at least has the sense to be sheepish about it when he admits that if he saw flaws in a woman’s face/body, he probably wouldn’t date her. This guy is an idiot. And he’s not hot!
Patti asks if he’s a breast, legs, or ass man, or all three. Of COURSE he says, “All three.” Then he says personality is important. I’m sure it’s not! He says his last relationship ended about two years ago, because the woman wanted a commitment he wasn’t willing to provide. “So what do you think is wrong with you?” Patti asks. ZING. Frank just blinks. In the end, he rightly assesses that he’s got control issues, and, this is the biggest thing, he’s afraid to make a mistake. I get it. I’m a perfectionist, too, but with relationships, you can’t know if there’s a mistake down the bend or not, and you can’t NOT get on with things just because you MIGHT make a mistake. Make the mistake. It’s almost always worth it in some way or another. Right? Take the leap!
Because of the control issues, Patti’s going to bring in an expert to help “break” that. Guy to guy. She’s also going to avoid doing a regular mixer with Frank, since he’s “more internal” than she thought. I don’t know what that means. Do you? Frank will also get the two-way mirror treatment. And he’s advised to think about things from the woman’s point of view, when planning a date. If he plans a date doing what HE wants to do, then it’s still all about control, and Frank’s never gonna win.
Then Patti heads off to Emma’s dance studio to learn more about her. We get the extended intro, which involves watching Emma teaching a stripper dance class. She’s got a pretty sizeable tattoo running down one arm, and in one shot, she looks like she’s got a man’s arms. Like, it goes beyond Madonna levels of muscle. Oh wait, she’s got a huge back piece, too. Wow.
Whoa whoa whoa, what is this?! I’m at work (hooray, internet!) and Googled this chick. This came up a few times. Ah, that explains a LOT.
Child star, life of excess, decides to turn it around and do pole-dancing, tattoos, and general shenanigans.
Emma’s originally from London, and she’s your typical child actress gone wonky. She drives a Hummer, and she must drive around with a stripper pole at the ready, because there’s a big PVC pipe atop the Hummer. Weird. Anyway, she’s pretty, she’s just overdoing the glitter and feather extensions and whatnot.
I also just learned via office Google that she was in Return to Oz with Fairuza Balk. Would you like to have a nightmare? Watch that movie. (Also, Insidious. I just saw it this weekend, and “SHRIEEEEEEEEEEEK!”)
Patti and Emma sit down to chat. “Why love now?” Basically, Emma wants the security of having a man there for her to ask about her day, to fix her a bubble bath. She likes George Clooney, more for his confidence and secure man-being. Hence her affinity for older men, wanting that security.
Oh wait, it was her kid who set the kitchen on fire? Bah, who cares.
Bottom line, Emma’s always been the aggressor, she’s always hunted down all these dudes she keeps marrying. Time for her to lay back and be pursued a little bit. I don’t think you can change this tiger’s stripes, but it’ll be entertaining for the next 45 minutes for you to try, Patti!
Oh ew, we get some of the pointing to body parts when talking about “no sex before monogamy.” Emma’s like, “Oh, you can do everything but have sex, right?” and Patti’s like, “Nuh uh, you can’t go here,” and points to her mouth. Emma looks away, laughing. Then when Patti suggests the makeover, Emma’s like, “Why?” Well, because your appearance now will attract oily bohunks, and you want yourself a classy, secure man, that’s why. There’s an art to dressing the part AND being who you really are, and you have to work at it.
So, this episode is about Patti trying to fix lost causes, right? Frank’s not going to stop being controlling, and Emma’s certainly not planning to sit back and be conservative. Shrug! Let’s get on with it! I’m spending too much time on these bozos as it is!
Emma heads to the salon with Patti, and is she wearing a wedding dress? Weird. Why does that stylist have the longer hair with the male pattern baldness? Doesn’t he, of all people, know that he’s making his baldness look worse by having those inch-long flyaways sproinging up from his scalp?
What’s making me laugh this second is that Patti is forcing Emma to submit to a haircut where her hair will be made shoulder length, but Patti’s own hair (extensions!) is way past her boob line.
Anyway, Flyaways Bald Spot gets to work on Emma. She complains about having straight, boring hair like Patti’s. Flyaways Bald Spot laughs too hard at that. Dude, it wasn’t even funny. Also, does she have gems stuck in her hair? Like, as a part of her extensions or something? They take those extensions out, and she complains that she looks like a Realtor. HA! Patti’s got a point, though—if Emma wanted to meet a rock star, her current look is fine. But she wants a steady dude, and she’ll probably better find that if she calms down just a smidge.
Emma is complaining too much about this, I think. Her “plain, boring” look that Patti forced on her? It really doesn’t look that different from the way she looked before. She still looks crazy! Now she just looks clean, too! Well, though, she’s lost her sparkle, in all her annoyance with Patti trying to make her over. She looks pissed. Pretty, and pissed. Isn’t she a little old to be playing petulant teenager?
I keep feeling like I have to defend Patti a little in this whole scenario. Like I GET IT that Emma feels like Patti’s trying to change who she is. But she’s not! She’s trying to get Emma to look the part to garner the initial attraction from a man she supposedly wants to meet. That man will see the clean, proper Emma and treat her like a lady. Then, as they get to know each other, Emma can slowly let her true self leak out from the Ann Taylor dress. An F-bomb here, a blowjob in a backseat there. You know, ease into it. It’s not like I farted in my boyfriend’s face the first night we met. I had to ease into it! (And I still don’t aim it at his face. Cuz I’m a lady.)
Man, I have a lot to say about this episode. I have a closet to unpack!!!
Frank meets with Patti at her office, where she’s got a guy named Matt there to meet. Matt’s the expert who’s supposedly going to de-control-issues Frank. He’s a life coach. And he’s good, his first question is to ask Frank if he’s open to the coaching. Frank’s got mostly open body language here, agreeing easily to the coaching.
“So you’re open to being a closed-off control-freak for the rest of your life? Good.”
Matt brings up the whole “I’m up at 5AM and you better get out of bed, too, so I can make it” thing. Frank laughs at himself a little when he admits to maybe being a little rigid. But he doesn’t think his rigidity is a problem (yet), so he laughs it off. Matt the life coach is kinda like, “hey, I’m sure this isn’t the only area of your life where you’re a controlling asshole.” Frank starts to close off a bit.
Oh, Patti’s sitting there, too. I thought this was supposed to be a man-to-man conversation? (Cue the “Patti is ugly and looks like a man” jokes. Derr.) Anyway, she chimes in to ask, “What are you afraid of?” He says “getting hurt.” I almost don’t believe it. I think he’s more afraid of letting in a woman who’s going to make him look bad. Patti gives him some mantra to chant to retrain his brain into fearing that hurt a little less, citing the ol’ “it takes 90 days to make or break a habit.” I thought it was 21 days? That’s what they always said about quitting smoking, right? Anyway, Patti thinks this is hopeless, ultimately.
Time for the date casting! Remember, for both, it’s a two-way mirror. Emma needs to slow her roll and downplay her masculine energy, and Frank needs to stop being so controlling, let ugly people in.
And I can’t help but notice upon first glance that Patti’s got some uglies there to meet Frank. The man said he wouldn’t date women who look like they need his surgical expertise! And that’s all you got! (And no, I’m not in that room because I, myself, am an ugly.)
Frank and Patti head into the waiting area to meet up with Emma. Maybe Frank and Emma can get together? He could be her rigid, secure man and she could be his intelligent slut! Patti’s pissed because Emma’s wearing a pink dress, not the tailored black dress they picked out yesterday. She’s sending the wrong message. Oh well! Let’s go meet dates!
So, Patti, Rachel, and Destin get to interview these people like they normally do, brutal comments and all, while Frank and Emma watch from behind the two way mirror. Frank likes it because it suits his personality. What, the control freak? No, he says, the fact that he doesn’t like large groups. Right.
“That’s a no.”
The first few daters are a “no.” One guy’s too young, one woman doesn’t make any money as a singer/songwriter. Then there’s bloated-faced Michelle, who had a DUI but is NOT in rehab. (The DUI thing is on that application? Really? How else did they know?) Yikes.
Frank’s taking notes like school’s in session. This is serious business for him, he does NOT want to make a mistake. Emma’s just sitting back in her chair, bored. She keeps making side comments to Frank, who’s shushing them off. He’s trying to pay attention to this Playmate, fool! Oh wait, hush, there’s Natalie! She’s pretty, and she’s smart and well-spoken, and she’s from Vegas. Frank’s dong perks up quite a bit.
Time to focus on Emma. She’s not focusing on THIS at all, but okay. She’s, like, checking her phone and musing about her hunger pangs. Meanwhile, some dudes in the other room are, like, available! Frank is visibly annoyed, but Emma thinks Frank is actually pretty great! Oy vey, she’s annoying. Who knows what she acted in as a child star? Anyone got internet right now? Emma Ridley. Lemme know.
Anyway, she finally sits up and pays a little bit of attention when some tall guy Paul and some not-so-tall guy Kelly, both big and white of teeth, come in. Kelly lives part-time in Hawaii, and he doesn’t blink a lot. So, of course, this creepy guy who’s probably only in town to get on TV will be the winner of the date, right?
“I can wake my date up at 5AM, right?”
Right! That’s who Emma picked! Patti stresses that Kelly is to plan the date, and Emma is to remain subservient to that. And Frank chose Natalie, who’s probably a bit younger than they wanted for him. That prompts Patti to ask if he chose her because he can control her. He looks down as he says no.
In the “We’re Back! No, We’re Not!” segment this week, Patti interviews some woman who’s a stand-up comic and amateur eyeliner applicator. (Seriously, too much, lady.) The woman touts to have a routine based on being single, at which Patti perks up. But then the routine sucks. Like, it’s tips, not jokes. Maybe she’s nervous, but it’s awful.
Back to the show! It’s dates time!
Frank kicks off his date at, oh, 7 AM. In Vegas. Because he wanted Natalie to see how HIS life is normally like. Right, that’s thinking of your date, wooing a woman, good job! He arrives at her hotel, bright and perky, with two cups of coffee. Remember, they’ve never met in person. She’s just someone from behind the mirror, and she probably knows very little about him.
He knocks on her door, and when he gets no answer, he rings the buzzer. It takes her a while to get to the door, and I was really hoping she’d be all fuzzy-headed and bleary-eyed, just to show this twerp that he’s an inconsiderate asshole. But no, she’s bright and perky and wearing lip gloss already. Damn you, Natalie!
THEN he takes her to an MMA gym. Ya know, one that rhetorically asks (sans question mark, pet peeve of mine) if you’ve signed the death waiver. That’s printed in big fancy Affliction typeface on the walls, by the way. Ugh. Natalie’s the definition of a good sport, going along with all of this. Especially since I think those big smelly dogs are also in the car with them.
Frank’s reasoning for bringing Natalie to the MMA gym isn’t to teach her how to be Female Frank. (Yeah right.) No, it’s because he wants to know that she’s athletic and likes to move. You know, you could take a bike ride and kinda get the same info. Remember that Robin chick from the NYC season, the huge one who was horrible on a bike? Yeah, Natalie probably would have had a better experience on the bike, BECAUSE SHE IS ATHLETIC. It’s an easier test than bringing your date to meet your MMA trainer.
OH MY GOD, Frank is working out with Natalie and HE IS GIVING HER TIPS. Like, telling her to make her hook a little tighter. What an asshole. I would hate this date, mostly because I sweat at the drop of a hat, and I’d be soaked after only a few minutes of doing this. That would not make me feel sexy!
“Can I punch you in the face?”
Oh, and then he’s arranged for Natalie to spar with one of his pro-fighter friends! (Female, by the way.) How romantic! She puts on headgear as she’s told, “Michelle is a professional, she’s going to try not to hurt you.” Wow, I bet Natalie’s panties are dripping wet by now. She tells us that she’s terrified, but hey, Frank’s a plastic surgeon and can fix her nose if Michelle breaks it! They spar for a bit, and then it’s clearly not even pretending-to-be-fun anymore. Michelle and Natalie hug, with Michelle warning, “Fighting’s easier than dating, good luck!” I swear Natalie and Michelle had better chemistry than Natalie and Frank do.
“Please stop blocking me, I want to make a connection…with your face.”
On the other hand, we have Emma and Kelly. Kelly shows up for his date, nervous as heck because it’s his first blind date. Remember, he hasn’t seen Emma. He says he’s got a nice dinner planned for them, and the limo should be showing up shortly. And then he walks into one of Emma’s dance studios. Oh no.
She pops out from behind a bawdy red curtain, wearing her hair in some slutty Shakespeare character updo. She tells Kelly she already saw him from behind the two-way mirror, which freaks him out a little. Just wait, Kelly!
Oh, so now he’s seated on a red velvet settee thingie, which is facing a stage that has a pole and some chairs on it. Oh, is Emma going to do a slutty dance? You don’t say. She comes out in some pink-and-black bustier with wide fishnet stockings and slutty heels. Yes, this is demure and will attract a secure, Clooney-esque man. Good work.
These people are idiots.
Kelly doesn’t look interested AT ALL. He looks bemused, but that’s about it. Emma starts dancing when the music cues to something that says, “I wanna stay true to myself.” Really? Where did you find that music, at Justifying My Inappropriate Choices ‘R Us? Some other ladies in knee-high athletic socks like my brother wore in the 80s are dancing at other nearby poles and chairs. This is gross. Wait, is that Emma singing that song??
Then we get Breaking Bad-style stripper pole-cam, showing us Emma’s goods as she spins backwards down the pole. Kelly is grossed out. Probably has a boner, too, but is grossed out. What I love about him is that he’s like, “Do you do this for all your dates?” Emma laughs. And I can tell she wants him to be impressed with her a little bit, and he’s not. He’s just like, “I have dinner plans for us. Meet you outside.”
Back to Frank. He’s waiting for Natalie to show up at some Italian restaurant, and there she is, strolling up in a weird dress with one mesh arm and one bare arm. She compliments HIM on “cleaning up well,” and he doesn’t return the compliment. Because Natalie is not himself! Oh, and this is HIS favorite Italian restaurant. Again, how romantic! Always thinking of your date, Frank. Good job.
As they eat, they chat about life and love. More specifically, Natalie asks Frank about his being a plastic surgeon, how that affects his view of the women he dates. He feels the pressure with this line of questioning, but you know it’s not the first time it’s been asked. And frankly, Natalie is gorgeous, so she shouldn’t be worried. I don’t think she is, but I bet Frank thinks he’s having a hard time holding back at telling her he could fix that birthmark on her thigh or something. (okay, that’s dermatology, nevermind.)
Then they talk about that good ol’ 5AM wake-up requirement. Natalie does NOT get up at 5AM, by the way. Well, you might as well go home now, Natalie. You’re done. Which is a shame, because I like her. She’s a classy girl, a good conversationalist, and she’s not fawning over Frank just because he’s rich. I think that’s because she’s grown up in that whole Vegas atmosphere. She’s not easily swindled or swayed. And I think Frank isn’t ready for someone who actually IS on his level a little. Like, she’s too smart and too good for him! Nonetheless, he likes her and wants to see her again.
As for Emma and Kelly? They’re in a limo, heading to dinner at some sushi place. She’s holding a beautiful flower arrangement, and she looks nice. Kelly’s checked out, though, I think. Like, he asks her about her business while they eat, and he’s a good enough guy to make the best of the date, but I don’t think he’s interested. He tells her it was a bit much, and she demurely apologizes. See, Emma, you COULD have had this nice dinner with Kelly a few times, talked about your business and explained the stigma against pole dancing, gotten to know each other, gotten to really like each other, and THEN done a burlesque show for him. By flipping it around, you ruined it. You can still be who you are, just not so early in the getting-to-know-you process!
Emma’s suckin’ down the sake, admitting to Kelly that she’s been married three times and that she’s not sure she wants to get married again. This date is OVER! In fact, they share a long, awkward silence, and then Emma mentions said awkward silence, and then Kelly says, “I’m just not feelin’ it.” WOW, that’s honest. Maybe wait until after dessert to drop that one? The rest of the date is even more awkward. He’s trying to be a gentleman, to continue the date, but eh, a gentleman doesn’t tell his date he’s not feeling it until AFTER the date.
Okay, final follow-ups with Patti. She calls Kelly first, who lays it all bare. Patti’s pissed. Emma comes in to face the music, and Patti’s like, “Do you think there was no chemistry because you pole-danced first?” Emma just wanted him to know who she was! As Destin very succinctly explains, you don’t have to bombard someone with EVERYTHING on the first date in order to be true to yourself. Emma’s like, “Whatever, I’ve been married three times, maybe now I want to be married to myself.” Patti’s like, “hey, great, match made! Goodbye!”
Then Patti calls Natalie, whose first bit of intel is about the 7AM wake-up call. She’s not so upset about the MMA part, because she’s a UFC fan, but she didn’t like how guarded and controlling he was at dinner. When asked directly if she’d like to see him again, Natalie says no.
“Matchmaker say what??! You did MMA on the date?”
So Frank heads in to meet with Patti, probably feeling pretty good about things. Patti chews him out for the early wake-up, then lets him know that Natalie didn’t enjoy the control-freak, doesn’t want to see him again. He looks genuinely surprised. Patti hopes, and I hope, that he got a bit of a jolt about this whole thing, and that he’ll work on making himself less guarded and controlling. Probably not, but he can try!
Captions of Truth! We already know the answers! No success here at all, not even a hint!
Programming note: The next episode is on this Sunday. As in, yesterday. As in, you are reading this after the next episode aired! I’ll tell you about it anyway, and then we can blab about it tomorrow, when I write ANOTHER recap with an unpacked closet looming over me. (Where is my headband for the gym???)
So, next time! It’s two dudes, and I think they’re both straight. One wants a “godly woman,” and the other was married twice, once for eight years and once for three months. Then one of them drops some kind of bombshell on everything, which is supposed to be the hook that brings you back. So, come back!