INTERVIEW: 'Beauty and the Geek's Jesse Yeary, Erin Schneider dish
By Christopher Rocchio, 10/25/2007
Jesse Yeary and Erin Schneider were both initially apprehensive about auditioning for Beauty and the Geek but each said the experience had a positive impact on their life.
Jesse, a 26-year-old software engineer from Cincinnati, OH, and his partner Erin, a 22-year-old hair stylist from Carol Stream, IL, were revealed to be the fifth pair eliminated from Beauty and the Geek's fourth season during last night's broadcast of The CW reality competition series.
On Wednesday, Jesse and Erin talked to Reality TV World about why they were the perfect match for each other; how they were able to help eliminate one of the strongest couples in the competition; what important skills they learned along the way; and how the experience impacted their everyday lives.
Reality TV World: How were each of you cast for Beauty and the Geek 4?
Erin: Jesse, you want to go first? Jesse: Sure. I had watched the previous seasons of Beauty and the Geek, and I always really liked watching it, I liked watching it with my brother. He was always telling me, "Dude, you're a geek! You're totally like one of those guys on that show. You should try and get on it." So when they said send in a video audition tape if you're a geek and you could use some help from a beauty, I decided that I would try it out. So I sent it in, and a couple months later they were flying me out to L.A.
Reality TV World: Do you consider yourself a geek?
Jesse: At first I was kind of offended by it. I was like, "No, no! I'm not as bad as the people on that show! I'm not that geeky" (Erin is laughing). But after I made that audition tape and actually watched it myself, Wow! I am a geek.
Reality TV World: What about you Erin?
Erin: I was actually just out at a club on a Saturday night after a long day of work at the salon, and I was actually crabby. And these people came up to me and were like... I thought they were just more guys trying to buy me drinks, and I was kind of annoyed because I kind of wanted to be left alone. They were like, "Do you ever watch the show Beauty and the Geek?" I was like, "No." (laughing) They were like, "You'd be perfect for it. We're casting the show. You should come in for an interview. We're only in town until Thursday." I'm like, "Do you guys have a card?" So they gave me a card, and had my mom like check-out their website to make sure it was legit and make sure it wasn't like something sleazy. So I called them and I set-up an interview. They were, "You're perfect, blah, blah, blah. Make a home video and send it out to us ASAP."
Jesse: My first impression of Erin was that she's beautiful and really sweet. I mean, the whole time we were there she was just so nice. Erin: Awwww! My impression of Jesse was... Everybody in the house was kind of talking over each other and they were getting really loud and everybody was trying to get in words. I don't like to shout over people, and I noticed Jesse was kind of holding back a little bit too. I was like, "He's perfect for my geek!" I wanted -- this is before we even got [put into pairs] -- to be partners. We ended up talking and we didn't scream over everybody so I knew that he was going to be my geek. Then it turned out that way!
Reality TV World: If you could have chosen your own partners, who would you have picked? It sounds like from what you just said Erin, you guys would have picked each other.
Erin: Yeah, I definitely would have picked Jesse no matter what. Jesse: Absolutely. If I could go back, I would definitely want Erin again.
Reality TV World: What did you think initially about the fourth-season twist of including Sam as the hunky guy and Nicole as the nerdy girl?
Jesse: Pretty much the first thing that went through my head was, "Oh wow! The geeks have no chance of getting a romance with one of the beauties now."
Reality TV World: When I talked to Luke last week he mentioned you made that comment.
Jesse: Yeah (laughing with Erin). The first five minutes I was telling everyone that.
Reality TV World: What did you think about it Erin?
Erin: I was like, "Great. Another club promoter guy who thinks his stuff doesn't stink. Great."... I mean they looked nice, so I was like, "Okay, let's give them a chance."
Erin: I kind of knew it was going to happen because that is Rebecca's type. I kind of think he's a club promoter so I usually like to stereotype -- I know you shouldn't believe stereotypes -- but I was like, "I hope he's not using her." Because she's a sweet girl.
Reality TV World: What was your reaction Jesse?
Jesse: Like everyone else, I pretty much saw it coming. It was pretty obvious as soon as they got in the house that Rebecca was really into Sam. I didn't really think there was anything wrong with it.
Reality TV World: Were you surprised by Will's nomination of you for elimination?
Erin: Oh my God! I swear to God I thought I was going to throw-up my stomach! (Jesse and Erin laughing) Jesse: I was pretty floored when he said that. That nomination I didn't see coming at all.
Reality TV World: Did he give any reasons why he nominated you?
Jesse: He said that we weren't really interacting with people other than each other in the house, which I thought was kind of strange because I thought we were talking to a lot of other people in the house. We were really close to several teams, like John and Natalie and Josh and Hollie.
Reality TV World: You survived that elimination room, and Erin you assured that you'd be sending Will and Rebecca to the there if you had the opportunity. Was that simply because Will had nominated you and Jesse or was there something else behind it?
Erin: I mean the initial them sending us to the elimination room, okay fine whatever. Then they had pinpointed it as us sending them as revenge. It wasn't revenge. They were winning all the challenges. That's a threat. Unfortunately it sucks that this kind of has to be a game and a competition -- but that's the best strategy to use -- sending a team that's already very, very strong to the elimination room. You know, why send a team that's not doing very well, not talking to people, when they still have more to learn? They shouldn't be sent home. So that's then reason why we sent them.
Reality TV World: So Jesse, why do you think the massages you gave the beauties were so successful during that challenge?
Jesse: I think the massages worked out well because I had a really good teacher. I hadn't given any massages before I'd been there (Erin laughing), and Erin pretty much taught me everything I know, so I practiced with her.
Reality TV World: Erin, were you able to tell when it was Jesse who was giving you the massage?
Erin: Oh yeah... I knew. I told him, "It's all about the pressure! Who cares about all these techniques that everybody's talking about. Just dig your fingers into my back. That's what we want!" (she and Jesse are laughing) He did it.
Reality TV World: Jesse you won that challenge, and immediately afterwards you basically assured Will that he'd be nominated for elimination. They didn't show much of it during the episode, but what was Will's reaction? Was he angry or did he understand?
Jesse: He wasn't really angry about it or surprised by it. I think he kind of knew that it was going to be coming. I think he kind of hoped that he'd be able to convince us otherwise in the time he had.
Reality TV World: Did he try to convince you otherwise?
Jesse: He went and talked to Erin... Erin: Yeah, he came and he talked to me right after the massage challenge. Basically, it was like you're going to come talk to me now and try to tell me that you're sorry now that you're not safe from the elimination room. It was kind of like why couldn't you come talk to me before? It was just kind of convenient for him.
Reality TV World: Was Sam and Rebecca's romantic relationship a contributing factor in your nomination of Will and Rebecca?
Jesse: It wasn't for me. Erin: It wasn't for me. Jesse: It was just that Will and Rebecca were such a powerful team all by themselves, you couldn't miss an opportunity to nominate them.
Jesse: I was pretty happy with the makeover I got. At first I was pretty shocked when they made my hair blonde (Erin laughs). I was sitting in the chair and I didn't actually know they were making it blonde. Then I look at my hair, and it's like, "Whoa!"
Reality TV World: Did you keep it blonde when you left the house?
Jesse: Right now it's still blonde (Erin laughing).
Reality TV World: Is your mom still cutting your hair?
Jesse: No, no. My mom's not cutting my hair anymore.
Reality TV World. Excellent. That must make you proud Erin.
Reality TV World: Erin where did you get the idea for "Aqualita Splash?"
Erin: I'm a big lover of the beach and palm trees and all that kind of stuff. So I was like, "I want to create a beach goddess." I don't know, the name just kind of came to me.
Reality TV World: It was a good name.
Erin: Yeah, it was a good name!
Reality TV World: Were you happy with the way the superhero turned out?
Erin: I was very, very, very happy with the way the character turned out. I was actually so proud of me and Jesse. The outfit he made and the whole storyline, I was like, "This is so cool! We should really actually make a comic book!"
Reality TV World: Jesse you were up late putting the finishing touches on the costume. Were you happy with the way the costume turned out?
Jesse: Yeah, I was happy with it. I know relative to like a real costume, it's not that great. But in the amount of time we had, I thought I did pretty good on it.
Reality TV World: Were you surprised Sam won the challenge? I'm just asking because as a viewer, his costume and "Metro-Man" superhero alter ego seemed pretty weak.
Jesse: I was shocked when he won the challenge. I figured for sure there's all these beautiful girls came-up with these great stories and had some really cool costumes, and then the guy with the spandex shorts can walk out there and win it.
Reality TV World: Were you surprised too Erin?
Erin: I was so SO surprised. I mean his story was kind of cool. I think a lot of [the beauties] based their stories on their personalities... so whatever that was cool. But his costume?! I mean it was just spandex pants and necklaces! How can you make something out of that? In my opinion it wasn't that creative so I was just kind of shocked.
Reality TV World: You guys had been to the elimination room before, how did you take the news when Sam and Nicole sent you there again?
Erin: Ummm... I think we were kind of feeling it a little bit. We kind of thought that we were going to be going. I don't know, I was okay with it. Once we had to go down to the elimination room, I kind of lost it (laughing).
Reality TV World: Do you think it might have been revenge on Sam's part because you nominated Will and Rebecca or do you think it was because of the reason he gave, that he wanted to split you up from Natalie and John?
Erin: I think it's both of those factors.
Reality TV World: Do you agree Jesse?
Jesse: I would say a big part of it was wanting to split us up from Natalie and John. For some reason they seem to think that maybe Erin and I were a threat. Between us and Natalie and John, we'd only won two challenges. [Sam and Nicole] had already won three by themselves. I'm not sure we were much of a threat to them...
Reality TV World: Were you happy with the way you were portrayed?
Jesse: I was really happy with the way the show portrayed me. I was kind of worried beforehand. There's tons of things they could use that make me look way more awkward and stuff than what they even showed on the show, so I was pretty pleased.
Reality TV World: What about you Erin?
Erin: Yeah, I was very happy. I loved it...
Reality TV World: Is there anybody in the house you'd like to see win? Anybody you wouldn't want to see?
Erin: I would really like to see Natalie and John win or Shay and Joshua. I personally would not like to see Sam and Nicole win because I think that they're a strong team and I really think it kind of defeats the whole purpose of Beauty and the Geek. Jesse: The team I would most like to see win is Natalie and John, and the person I'd least like to see win I would have to say is Sam.
Reality TV World: Do you think participating in the show really had an impact on the way you look at yourselves as well as other people who are different from you?
Jesse: I definitely think it had an impact on me. I feel more confident than I did before the show, which is one of things I really wanted to get out of it. I'm also less afraid to talk to a beautiful girl than I would have been before the show because I see how nice they can be, like how nice Natalie and Erin were all of the time.
Reality TV World: What about you Erin?
Erin: The show definitely was a huge impact on my life. Basically, I try to give everybody that comes in my path the time of day and just really listen to other people -- nerdy, geeky, whatever -- they're all interesting and unique in their own way.
Reality TV World: So what's next? Got any plans?
Erin: Well I want to move to California (laughing)....
Reality TV World: Any specific reason why?
Erin: I always told myself I'd be doing hair or acting because I'm a hair stylist. One of my dreams is to do runway hair, so I'm going to try and pursue that or pursue an acting career.
Reality TV World: What about you Jesse?
Jesse: For me, I'm back doing computer programming. I enjoy that, it's fun. I've been going out more with my friends and stuff, so that's been really cool. I've just been enjoying watching the show.