We open. A shot of a bird and some huts fades into our title cards. Smoky red background, whitish letters cutting through the red. Somewhere, some 15-year-old’s mother is proud of the graphics her son came up with in the basement.
No gimmicks? I might not be the world’s foremost authority, but I’d say splitting four couples up and trying to tempt them with fourteen members of the opposite sex is pretty gimmicky.
Another shot, this time of clouds passing by as a woman’s voice says “Oh my god, this is very real. This is about to happen.”
What? No prizes? Then why are any of these people subjecting themselves to this? For the acting career promotion? Realistically, isn’t a Cinemax After Dark movie the best possible career highlight for someone who appeared on Temptation Island? So what else is there? Basically, it comes down to a chance to have sex with a complete stranger. Strangely enough, this was the main reason I went to bars when I was a college freshmen.
And now a shot of a hot gal in a swimsuit, as the same female voice says “I just don’t want somebody like that around my boyfriend.” Uhm, should you have thought of that before you signed up to be on this show?
“Just Four Real Couples”
“When these two weeks are up, what we learn will be worth the hurting and the crying.” Yeah, because the only way you can learn something worthwhile about your partner is by being tempted on national television.
“Willing To Risk
Cue clip montage. Long clip montage. Long, lengthy clip montage. In fact, calling it a long lengthy clip montage doesn’t do it justice. By the time it ends, I think we’re already at the end of the first segment of the show. The montage (finally) ends with the man we will come to know as Michael (or else doofus) saying “Everything was completely innocent. But now it’s not going to be so innocent.” Completely innocent? You mean, the innocent grappling with people NOT your significant other, as compared to the non-innocent grappling with people not your significant other? Does Fox really want anything to be completely innocent? Sex is as important to a Fox reality show as it is to a 16-year-old boy. The only difference is that the 16-year-old boy approaches the subject in a more mature manner.
We meet our couples. First stop, Long Island, New York. Melissa and Michael, together 2 years. It was instant attraction for Melissa, who apparently doesn’t need a man with brains. Melissa was Miss New York. We see a shot of Michael and Melissa, and she’s wearing a tee-shirt, sash, and crown. It must be her room, cause there are dolls everywhere. (I can hear Michael saying “Put on the crown, honey, please put on the crown.”) They both live with their parents, and Michael thinks he has it made. No rent, no food. What more could a 25 year old guy want? Melissa, at 29, is starting to long for a little something more. “Why am I not engaged to Michael already is a question to me and myself.” Uhm, Melissa. Perhaps you need to ask Michael that one. (I can hear Michael saying “Why buy the cow when you’re getting free milk?” I can hear Michael saying a lot of things, few of them putting him in a favorable light.)
Farmville, Virginia. (Farmville?) Kristin and Eric. Together three years. When Kristin first met Eric, he was a frat president and a big man on campus. Eric did a kitty kat voice for Kristin that made her fall in love. Kristin is obviously easily amused. They are discovering for the first time that Eric only seriously dated two women before meeting Kristin. This takes Kristin somewhat aback, as she thought Eric had dated far more girls. He says he dated a lot, but only two others seriously. I recall how the word “dating” means something different to working women, and suspect that Eric is using it the same way.
Chicago, Illinois. Stephanie and Anthony, together three years, living together seven months. Anthony is teaching Stephanie how to iron, cause she never does. Yeah, he’s a prince. Stephanie says she starts fights just cause she likes to fight. Yeah, she’s a princess.
Las Vegas, Nevada. Jason and Kara, together one year. Our first shot of Jason is of him flashing as the two of them drive down the street. He has tats that I know make him think he looks like Vin Diesel. It really makes him look like Vin Unleaded. Kara thinks Jason will remain faithful. I think he looks like a horndog waiting to be unleashed.
Cut to the four couples arriving at the airport, with a voiceover from our host, Mark L. Wahlberg (the L is for Love). The couples agreed to come to a tropical paradise to see if their love could survive the ultimate temptations. We finally see Mark, walking the beach, looking like he had to borrow some clothes to get the gig. The music cues up, pure Survivor rip off, with a closing crescendo as the logo appears surrounded by fire. Oooooh.
The plane lands, and the couples are greeted by Mr. Rourke and Tattoo. Man, wouldn’t that have been a better show? The couples say nice things about each other, including Michael saying that he would rather see Melissa happy with someone else than unhappy with him. What a sport! Unspoken is the fact that he would rather see himself happy with someone else than unhappy with Melissa.