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****Continuing our new recapper week here at TVgasm. We’ve added Tough Love to the roster, as well as the lovely and talented Luscious! Take it away!
Hello Gasmii and welcome to Tough Love Miami, VH1′s reality show about clueless sweet girls who go bonkers around men.
To prevent this show from being just another psycho babel dating rehab downer (and possibly to get some straight male viewers?), the show is now set in the sexy town of Miami Beach. I’m super excited to be your guide through season 3 of this “hit tv show” (anything I write about better be a hit) and am delighted to be one of TVgasm’s newest writers. We’re a little behind as episode 3 is about to air, so strap in and hang on while we play catch up, um-kay?
Firstly, a little about the show. Tough Love is designed as a boot camp to help women find love. At the helm is Steve Ward who apparently is an expert in matchmaking because his mom is a successful matchmaker. This is good news for me – I never knew it, but I guess I have a potential career dispensing advice on operating room nursing procedures. Thanks, Mom!
Anyway, Steve gives tough love to the girls to help them mend the crazy ways they send men running. He does this by testing them each week with a different challenge designed to bring our their inner psycho. Once their demons reveal themselves, Steve calls the girls into the hot seat, where he breaks them down in proper drill sergeant fashion before building them back up again with love and understanding.
So, let’s meet this season’s hopelessly single cast.
I was expecting a bunch of slutty ho’s I could spend the next 8 weeks making fun of, but to my disappointment and delight, they are actually nice girls that I think I love already. So, I’m not sure where the scathing commentary I wanted to make will work itself into these recaps – maybe I’ll just have to bash the men instead. Anyway, the folks at VH1 have learned a thing or two from TVgasm and Steve is giving each girl a moniker that is supposed to be humorous. I’ll share their nicknames, but I don’t really agree with all of them.
Michelle from Hollywood claims she is 33, but there is something unnatural going on with her face. I can’t quite pinpoint it – nose job? botox? face lift? whatever it is, I am deeply suspicious that she lost a decade somewhere. Steve likes to call her “Miss Delusional” because she has a vision board on which she has pasted all her dreams for life, a man, etc. When I was 13 and doing this with my girlfriends, we called them collages, but I suppose Vision Board sounds more grown up.
Christine used to be hot, then she got fat. She’s hot again but she can’t get over the fat stage and still thinks she’s 250 lbs. This girl is gorgeous and incredibly insecure. How does someone who was Mrs. Iowa become so confused about men? Guess it goes to show no one has it all. Oh yeah, Christine is recently divorced and the only thing that strikes me the wrong way is that she says she dresses pageant girls for a living and actually said, “it’s important to me.” Let’s hope she doesn’t make an appearance on Toddlers & Tiaras.
Avonte is our oldest boot camper at 36. For the last nine years, she has been in a relationship with a married man, prompting Steve to give her the clever name “Miss Other Woman”. She’s scared that she’s too old to get married now and that she’ll never be more than eye candy. At first glance, this honey looked to me to be just another pretty girl in a white bikini, but I’m here to tell you this girl has it going on. She has brains and keeps it real. I am really digging this girl and can’t figure out how she could have let herself be second best in any man’s life. I think I’m gonna be learning a thing or two about my own stereotyping while watching this show.
Brigette is literally the blonde of the group. Bless her heart, she seems very sweet but her big Bambi eyes blink cluelessly. She has no idea what she’s doing wrong, but in the last year, she’s been on more first dates (37) than she has had birthdays. Not one of them (the dates) amounted to anything. It’s no wonder she has no idea where to even look for a guy anymore – she’s probably exhausted the entire dating pool in her state. Brigette is freaked because Cosmo magazine told her infertility goes up to 30% between the ages of 30-35. Here’s a helpful hint, sweetheart, Stop reading that shit!!! It’s hard to believe such a cute, darling girl could wind up alone for the rest of her life, which is her greatest fear.
Leilani has a hot body and a strangely chinless cute face, but all she wants is a tall man who looks good and has a lot of money. Steve rightly calls her Miss Superficial. I think she’ll be my least favorite on the show, even though she has this fragile “somebody take care of me” kind of look which I usually fall for. She clearly cares too much about what others think as she admits she wants a man that makes her friends “go wow” i.e. get jealous. Her arrogance is astounding. She admits average men aren’t sexy and then says “I want a guy with everything too” as in since she has it all going on, so should he. Her Brit accent is cute but I suspect artificially maintained. She has her own clothing line in L.A. – the perfect place for such a shallow woman.
Claudia warms my heart. She has this incredible natural sexy voluptuousness that seems to plague her ability to keep a man. Mostly she’s simply seen as a sex object and not a potential wife. The truth is she’s a mother and very down to earth (except when dating, where apparently the drama comes out). Her greatest adversary seems to be what she wears, but despite Steve’s comments along those lines, she does not seem willing to modify her loud and flaunty clothes. She’s a tellanovella actress from Miami, so Steve calls her Ms. Drama Queen, which I don’t think is really true. She’s just a hottie sending out the wrong message. Steve also referred to her look as the Spanish Elvira, although I think this is also unfair.
Chasity cracks me up. First of all was her name a spelling error? ‘Cause it makes more sense for this Vegas go-go dancer to be named Chastity. Secondly she’s got baby fever and desperately wants to be a stay at home mom and wife… while keeping her steadily-heading-into-adult-entertainment career on track. Steve calls her Ms Double Standard. I would be more inclined to steal Michelle’s Ms Delusional title for this little hottie. The good news: she still hasn’t danced long enough to earn a ridiculous boob job. The bad news: she doesn’t seem willing to give up her career for the man she says she desperately wants.
And then there’s Jane.
Jane, Jane, Jane… What’s your opinion on this girl? Think she’s the psycho she professes to be? Is she as angry and intimidating as she is portrayed? Steve calls her Miss Bossy, his worst name yet. This girl is intentionally Ms undaztood. Let me tell you about Jane. This girl is all talk. Inside that ferocious exterior is a girl terrified people will find out she’s fallible and human. Her expectations are so high for herself that she thinks she’s really a failure and has to fake her intimidating personality to hold people far enough at bay to keep them from discovering she isn’t perfect. I know about Jane – I was Jane. Thank goodness at least this tough chick will get some proper wake up calls – I had to admit my humanity all alone and love never comes till you go through that torturous step.
After meeting the girls, Steve tells us the first episode is all about first impressions. As such, he has the girls walk into a bar past several men and then take a seat. What an awkward and nervous task this must be; knowing you are being judged simply on how you look. While most of the girls hurry by shyly, sometimes saying hi, a few girls stood out on this task. Most notably, Michelle nearly stopped and salivated over the unexpected discovery of a pack of men watching her. Avonte was quick enough to ask all their names as she walked by and Claudia strutted by, turning every head at the bar. As the girls take their seats, Steve welcomes them to Miami and informs them that men make snap judgements in seconds. He also warns you never know who is watching, as the lights go up and 50 more men are revealed observing the girls from a balcony, which shocks our ladies. I expected more from this reveal, but sadly, nothing ever came of a balcony full of men. Talk about missed opportunities!
Steve then tells the girls what his impressions are of them; none of which they like. Leilani hilariously misunderstands Steve criticism as an attack on the appearance of her older ex-husband, rather than listening to his reasonable point that she is always cheated on and left alone.
The girls are told that their love lives are on life support and they are in need of a reality check. If the girls weren’t so upset, I wonder if they would giggle at how he actually says “reawity” check. He sends them all off to see their new home for the next ten weeks.
While the girls are riding to their new home, Jane likens herself to Claudia, since she is Cuban and Claudia is also Latina. According to Jane, if you mess with a Latina woman’s man (or maybe it was if the man messes up), a Latina would go all psycho on you. Claudia quickly tries to distance herself from Jane and the girls suddenly realize they don’t want much to do with this hot head either. True to her subconscious strategy, Jane is successfully pushing everyone away.
The girls arrive at their new home, which is a giant “Barbie Mansion” as Chasity so eloquently puts it. But I’m a little confused about her next statement, “I’m in heaven and I’ve made it!” Yes, if you consider being cast in a show because you can’t keep a man which lands you in a dream house for 10 weeks making it, then congrats.
After finding out 5 women are sharing one room, with Jane being smack dab in the middle of what could have been a pajama party every night, Steve calls the girls downstairs. Since all of them had a problem with Steve’s opinion, he decides to show them what other men think of them, based on the first impressions they radiated at the bar.
The men said Claudia is good for one thing; sex. She protests she’s not a human blow up doll and I’m pretty sure this is the last time we’ll see her in fishnet stockings.
Brigitte was forgettable. All the men said they would date Christine, but when probed they didn’t have much impression of her at all. Avonte was seen as not wife material but good arm candy. Damn, this girl can’t get a break – I can see her value – what the hell is the vibe she’s sending out to the opposite sex? The only other opinion they showed was the first impression of Jane. Whew, that was harsh! According to the men, an ugly girl should at least have a good personality, which Jane didn’t have. Jane’s response:
Next up, the girls are being sent to a roof top party to practice mingling. There’s a twist, of course, which is that the girls have to walk through a lobby full of men on the way to the elevator. Based on this first impression, guys will hopefully follow each girl into the elevator, where they have only the time it takes to get to the roof to pick a date for the night from among their admirers. For this challenge, despite arguing with Steve, Claudia has dressed a little more demurely.
Poor Christine has to go first and her insecurity level is code orange. As she walks into the lobby, she apologizes for playing with her hair! Oh man, even I can read her “I’m really uncomfortable and not worthy” vibe. Her dress is pretty fugly too, but she still looks beautiful. Tough crowd in there because only one man follows our beauty queen into the elevator. Seriously, one man? Sadly, we find out later he only followed her in because he felt bad for her. Ouch.
Leilani struts in all cute and petite and her winsome delicate look attracts 9 men. Fools, this girl will cut you if you don’t live up to her pie-in-the-sky expectations! Amazingly, with 9 good looking men to choose from, she decides she wouldn’t want any of them so she simply grabs what she considers the hottest one to hang with for the evening. She judged these men simply on their external appearance and dismissed them. I’m gonna slap this bitch.
Chasity desperately hopes she’ll land as many guys as Leilani, but, despite her ‘Party in a Dress’ message, she only bags two for the elevator. Michelle walks in like a clunky robot, but that’s enough for four guys to follow her in. Brigitte blinks and 7 men chase her. Jane astounds me by making eye contact, acting sweet and shining a really nice smile. Her efforts land her 5 men, but I’m here to tell you, this persona is an act too.
Avonte enters wearing a baby doll dress that doesn’t do her justice. Her boobs are too big, so that empire waist makes her look pregnant. Poor thing, she tried to dress down the slut factor in her clothes and her efforts land her only two men. Steve tries to point out that its quality over quantity, but I doubt that will ease the sting. Claudia saunters in and 6 guys fly to her honey. Shockingly, when it is time to pick a date from among her suitors, Claudia walks out of the elevator alone!
At the rooftop bar, we get to catch a glimpse of the girls in action. Avonte forgets the name of her very good looking date (its Jason, girlfriend!) Leilani’s yumalicious man works with disadvantaged children and is a lawyer. He’s sounding more and more awesome. So, of course, Leilani says James is nicer than the guys she usually dates. Hey, look at that – she wants an asshole, just like her. Run, James, run! Brigette like totally wants to go like para sailing. And when Jane discovers her pick is 25 and still lives at home, she blows him off for Claudia. Rude bitch. I hope you get called to the hot seat at group!
Steve has seen enough and decides he’s got everything he needs for the group session tomorrow night. Before group, the girls are all dressing up. What’s up with that? I’ve never seen anyone come to group therapy looking their best – either these chicks don’t watch Celebrity Rehab or they’ve been given special instructions to have on the heaviest, runniest mascara possible so it looks more dramatic when Steve makes them cry.
As the session begins, Steve offers each girl a promise ring. I rarely ever get jewelry, which is fine because I never wear it, but I am amazed at how these girls take the gift in stride without nary a thank you. Maybe this is done every season and they were expecting a little bling? Still, it blows my mind as I watch some of them inspect the ring with cold calculation.
Steve starts right in on Jane. Guess she won’t be in the hot seat after all. How dare she be so rude to her date. Knowing she fucked up, but unwilling to face her failure, she bluffs that she didn’t care about the assignment and tuned out her date when she found out how old he was. The poor guy comes on the TV to tell Steve he felt attacked and disrespected. No one deserves that, not even a 25 year old man (who, by the way, is probably socking away a lot of cash) living at home with his folks. Her facade crumbles a bit when Steve tells her he won’t match her again if she’s going to blow off the exercises.
Christine is absolutely mortified that her one pick followed her in because he felt bad for her. She then says something about being the biggest girl from the back and her arms were showing… I guess inferring that men will see her as a heifer in short sleeves. I’m pretty sure it was the insecurity radiating from her like a nuclear blast, not her size, that kept the men from joining her. Avonte looked bigger than her tonight with that terrible dress and she got two men. Besides, from my vantage point, it seems Claudia is just as voluptuous as Christine, the difference is Claudia owns it and oozes sex appeal. Steve tells Christine how he would describe her to a man (he’s right on about curves in all the right places) and promises her he will never set her up with a man who wants a waif.
Avonte says the whole things was a crock of shit. Steve points out she’s just mad that she only had two guys follow her into the elevator. I think Steve’s right. She denies having spent the last 9 years as arm candy and when Steve tries to explain he has too much respect for her to help her if she still thinks operating like that is okay, I think maybe she starts to get it. She deserves more than second best. Here’s hoping that’s what I’m reading on her face.
Steve grills Leilani when she tells him she wants somebody who is equal or better to her godessness. When Steve suggests there could have been a decent looking man among the elevator guys saving the world, she says it doesn’t matter – the realtionship wouldn’t work if he wasn’t good looking. Steve calls her pathetic,superficial and incredibly vain.
Leilani storms off, but she isn’t gone for long. Steve calls Claudia into the hot seat and there is no way Leilani will miss Steve dishing it out to another girl. Steve shows the video of Claudia walking through the lobby and then riding the elevator with the men who followed her in. Despite a ‘come hither’ sexy walk past the men, as soon as she entered the elevator she turned her back on most of them and didn’t say much. It was like she wasn’t willing to do any work – which was actually her defense in getting off the elevator without a guy. She claimed that she’s never had a to pick a guy before and she doesn’t know how. So in other words, you only date guys who approach you – that puts a big limit on your dating pool. In fact, if you’re not picking out the ones you like, it’s no wonder your relationships never last. The men in the video describe Claudia as arrogant, cold and cocky, which upsets her enough to get her crying – she claims she doesn’t have any self confidence in real life – only when it comes to acting. Steve tells her she’s here to work, so obviously she needs to learn how to actively choose a man. Satisfied that she is sobbing at an appropriate level, he then soothes her ruffled feathers.
Letting Claudia return to her seat, Steve looks around at the teary eyed women in front of him. He reminds them once again that their love life is on life support and they are going to have to do the work if they hope to have any success. Our episode ends with Steve saying, “You are the most beautiful women I have seen in one boot camp. What the hell is wrong with you?”
So here’s a question I have for Steve: What the hell is up with the padded cell you do all your commentary from?
And so the first episode of Season 3 comes to a close. It occurred to me as I watched this show (never having seen it before), that I could easily have been one of these girls. I luckily managed to find real love and got hitched just under the age of 40, but I find myself wishing I’d had the advantage of Steve’s advice at an earlier age.
There’s no way I can be vicious to these girls. What they will need is support and encouragement and understanding. I can’t believe it, but I think these recaps will be rooting for the girls, rather than making fun of them. Here’s hoping at some point they get it right!