Boy Meets Boy: Complete Season One (review)

Who on earth invented the term “reality show”? There’s nothing “real” about them: they’re game shows, manipulated, artificial situations in which people compete for monetary reward. The worst of the breed are the “dating” ones, which verge on prostitution, and surely the worst of that bunch is cable network Bravo’s Boy Meets Boy. Positioned as a “groundbreaking” exploration of gay and straight stereotypes, it’s nothing more than an exercise in organized humiliation. Anyone who buys that 32-year-old James — a “exceptional” gay man, who’s “smart,” “romantic,” and “has wonderful values” — honestly believes that he will find the “connection” he pretends to be seeking amongst 15 pretty boys vying for a large financial prize needs to have her head examined. But wait! James’s crass willingness to do anything to be on television is held in as much disdain by the show’s producers as it should be by the audience. As the snide, unpleasant hostess constantly and gleefully reminds us, James and his gal pal Audra have “no idea!” that some of the “suitors” are straights there to fool everyone — one of them will get $25,000 if James falls for him unaware of the joke. As if the ongoing degradation of all involved weren’t well enough documented over the course of six 45-minute episodes, three hours of extras cut from the televised episodes are included. This disgusting series takes the “vast wasteland” idea to an embarrassing new low.

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