Boy Meets Boy

I first read about Boy Meets Boy at Mirandala.org. Now after reading the write up about the show in Newsweek, it sound downright cruel. Basically, Boy Meets Boy is the gay version of The Bachelor/The Bachelorette. However, there is a twist in that not all of the men competing are gay. In the mix are a few straight men who get the chance to win $25K if the “the leading man” picks them. However, “the leading man” isn’t told that some of the men aren’t gay until halfway through the season. Considering that he’s there to find “real love” (if that’s even possible on TV), I think it’s disingenuous for the producers to play with people’s emotions like this. This twist smacks of desperation on the part of producers to create huge ratings. Shame on Bravo who is airing this show.

24 Comments
  1. I was initially turned off by the “twist”, but is it any worse or more hurtful than For Love or Money’s plot device? Do gay people somehow deserve protection from reality shows that straight people don’t get? I don’t think so, but it seems like alot of the critics of Boy Meets Boy do.

  2. I find the twist distasteful because “the leading man” could potentially choose a man that is straight who really has no interest in dating him. For the straight guy, it’s all about the money. With Love or Money, the woman could potentially choose the guy over the money. A real relationship could be started. If the leading man in Boy meets Boy choose a straight guy, that’s not the case. That is the big difference.

  3. It’s no big deal! I have similar experiences on the Belmont Avenue bus all the time.

  4. It’s all gross.
    Justified plots twists or un-justified plot twists there is no reason to put glorified gossip & slander on national TV. I mean, think about it: We all hate the neighborhood gossip. But he/she could be making big bucks in the TV industry.
    And we’re shelling out HOW much a month for this crap?

  5. My cousin Doug Ross is the producer of this show. I’m so abivalent about it. On the one hand, I hate the reality show insanity that has gripped our creativy-bereft television networks. On the other hand, I’m thrilled for Dougie. This is a huge break for him.
    Of course, I’ve never seen it and I’m spared most of the crap that is the American airwaves since I live in Samoa and don’t have a TV.
    However we did have a reality show filmed here recently. That MTV “Surf Girls” came to town a few months ago. I’ve heard it’s a horrible show. Have you seen it?

  6. No question you have to support your cousin. I just wish they hadn’t used a twist like that. As for “Surf Girls,” I’ve seen it advised on MTV, but I haven’t watched.

  7. It’s pretty sick. This whole reality tv show isn’t a credit to America’s name. It started in places like Japan where social problems are on the rise. What does that say about America’s social problems?
    Reality TV shows are signature of a declining society. If you want an example of a society that became decadent and fell look at Ancient Rome. The gladiatorial combat? That was a show put on to distract decadent Roman citizense from their own petty and amoral lives at the expense of others.
    Same diff here in the modern world.

  8. WHY ARE PEOPLE DISCUSSING THE EFFECT THIS SHOW MAY OR MAY NOT HAVE ON ITS PARTICPANTS INSTEAD OF THE IMPACT IT WILL HAVE ON IT’S AUDIENCE!?!! Why is NO ONE denoucing this purile show? Is no one else insulted by the notion that all gay men fit this horrific sterotype? I am not out-of-shape, antisocial, policially zealetous or closeted, but I refuse to be herded into the acceptable white corral that these ‘reality-show’ wanna-bees have created. TOO MANY GAY MEN OF MULTICULTURAL BACKGROUNDS HAVE FOUGHT RELENTLESSLY FOR DECADES TO DISSOLVE THIS TYPE OF SELF-HATE. WHY ARE OTHER GAYS SUPPORTING IT?!

  9. Let’s try not to be naive here folks. Did James (the show’s star) really think that BRAVO (and NBC) would put their incredible production and marketing muscle into motion purely for the altruistic purpose of either finding James a husband and/or trying to improve the lot of gay men everywhere? Of course not.
    This reality show, exactly like any and every reality show, is about two things, and two things only: ratings and staying as far away from reality as humanly possible.
    Anyone so desperate for attention as to resort to a ‘reality’ show for dating prospects deserves what they get. Kudos to BRAVO for finally giving gay men the opportunity to make equally as big a fool of themselves on national TV as has heretofore been the exclusive right of straight people. As a gay man I find this to be one of the greatest steps foreward in the battle for our equal rights (or should I say, ‘equal responsibility’) achieved so far. I’ve eagerly watched each episode and plan to watch the rest.
    Anyone critiquing Boy Meets Boy from a ‘social responsibily’ angle needs to get a life and find a hobby, in that order.

  10. Any inside dirt on Boy meets Boy??? anyone know anything not being released by the press????

  11. i think i’m falling in love with james….i think he should have been told about the twist earlier…b/c this is the way it is with some of us without “gaydar” we fall for the confused “bisexual”….whatever….i wish james much happiness…..

  12. I think I figured out how they ensured that there would be at least 1 straight guy in the final panal of 3 … they always grouped the heterosexuals together to protect against all of them getting cut before the end. In short, James was FORCED — by the way the host grouped the candidates — to choose to keep at least one heterosexual. I wonder how it would have turned out had there been no groupings that forced James to select at least 1 heterosexual for the final 3 candidates?

  13. Greg, you said what I was thinking — so I’ve already figured out who the ‘straight’ guy is. Also, from the finale-promo video clip, we got to see James’s pick’s hand holding the champagne glass…. and from the hand you could tell who was holding the glass. I’m sure everyone’s figured it out already, but I thought it would be fun to discuss how they inadvertently (or were forced to) let the cat out of the bag in this manner. It’ll still be interesting to see how everyone reacts (esp the gay contestants who don’t yet know that one of them is straight). And how James handles the revelation of the straight guy — will he completely rip into him? (probably no, he’s way to mildmannered, but his gal pal will probably have her claws nice and sharpened!)

  14. I watched last night and really wanted to deck that unctuous blonde, who all season has been behaving as though she and James were girlfriends, even as she’s inflicted the cruel elimination system and this final-I-promise twist. I’m sure she’s just doing her job, but — heartless! I agree in theory that true equality will mean that gay people can be victimized on dating shows just as straight people are. But it’s like gender equality: I like to say that feminism means not that guys no longer hold the door for girls, but that now every person holds the door for every other person.
    The twist on *BMB* is distinguishable from others, for straightness is a fundamental conflict that will make romance (all but) impossible. (There’s always the chance on *FLOM* that romance will win out; *Joe M*’s contestants may have deserved their twist if they were after the cash, even if it’s moralistic.) James is just looking for love, or at least some solid friendships. *BMB* perverts his and others’ good intentions. I watch every episode — my responsibility as gayfolk, for the politics of it — but it still makes me cringe cringe cringe.
    (Anyone remember Wes’s ghod-awfully posturing “You assumed I was gay. [glance away] Why?” Too, too late in the day to be playing games like that, especially with the aggressively vanilla James. He almost joined the producers and the noxious blonde in line for the celebrity smackdown.)

  15. I think this show, as well as Queer Eye, is great. They are the first shows to give gays an equivilant show to straights. If this continues, it will eventually give a more complacent view of gays to the overall community. And thank you Scott for being a rare voice of common sense and reality in this whole thing! This show is not a documentary, nor is it a serious dating/match-making service. It is TV, Entertainment, Hollywood, meant to keep viewers coming back, thus making money. Now, was the romantic in me happy about the straight twist, absolutely not. Is it any different than some of the straight shows with twists – no. It is TV, meant for entertainment. I think it is a credit to the writers and producers of this show that they are treating the gay version the same as the straight versions – would we want it any other way? Isn’t our goal to be treated equally – it works all ways. Would I love to see a Boy Meets Boy without a twist someday, absolutely. Will that happen – only if the producers feel it will make money – same as any other show. Greg – I had the same thought about Franklin having to be the final str8 because he was paired with Sean, the only other remaining str8 in that selection ceremony. However, (and I’m sure that’s why they did it), the little blurb they show at the end saying how the producers confer with James on his choices might mean that if they truly know who he will choose, there is no need for such a pairing. Hmmm, just a thought to keep us guessing. Rin – I wish I was so detail oriented to recognize that hand! :o) All in all, Bravo to BRAVO for being the first to give these types of shows a chance. I hope they make millions for their efforts and put some of that back into more gay topic shows.

  16. Interesting reading on this topic. Here is my question:
    Now that we know now who James ended up picking, does anyone know if he and Wes are still seeing one another? I mean, this wrapped production months ago so what has happened since then and the show airing on Bravo? Anyone know?

  17. I heard from a gay pal in West Hollywood that James has a lawsuit pending against the producers of the show. He is super pissed that there were straight guys in the mix and feels deceived. Hello??? That’s the only reason anyone watched the show in the first place.

  18. I really would have been more than happy to have taken him out on a date if it would have alieviated the situation for him. I am ever the thoughtful one. Alas, he didn’t know I existed!
    For real though, he is a hottie and will make someone a great catch. Wish it were me! (whoo-hoo! over here–just waiting to be caught!)

  19. This show was a good first step towards programming I can relate to. It was relatively inoffensive, showcased wholesome, attractive guys and stayed on message that tolerance and openness are the appropriate responses to diversity. Apparently it has been well received which should lead to more and hopefully better shows targeted to the same audience.
    Banality may be the price we must pay if gays are to move from being marginalized to the mainstream.

  20. I’m confused. As a gay man, I can’t believe that James (or at least the James that we see on the show) has to go to this extreme to find a mate. Yes, the show was fun to watch and a tad cruel to James with the twist (like I care…that’s life and reality TV bud), but it’s not like he can’t find a nice mate without the show…Face it fellow queers, it’s not like he’s the Hunch Back of Notre Dame…and if he can’t find a nice lover, he obviouly has issues that show didn’t portray.

  21. I don’t agree at all with the last post that states that James must have some “hidden issues” otherwise why can’t he find a mate in L.A.? James came across as a fairly naive kind of guy (and no, I don’t consider that an insult, I find it somewhat endearing) who was a transplant from another state. The gay “scene” in Los Angeles can be somewhat cruel and shallow and sometimes men who arrive there from other places don’t always understand how to adjust to the reality of it. Its pace and expectations can be crushing. I know, I did it.
    I came to L.A. as a young impressionable man from northeastern PA and let me tell you, it was not easy to get used to the body-consious, catty, narcisistic (sp?) culture that the West Hollywood crowd (who refer to themselves with pseudo-irony as living in a “gay ghetto”) tosses around so casually. It is not always a nice environment nor is it easy to find footing there. I think his naivete is probably laughed at, as mine was, and that doesn’t exactly lend itself to any intimacy, even among friendships. I can’t remember just how many times I was told to “get over it and just go out and have some fun” when mentioning how I personally longed for a serious relationship and just wanted to find some husband material. Don’t get me wrong, there are many wonderful men out in L.A. But there is a funny dynamic at work many times in most of the gay community, not just in California. James may look to be a pretty boy and like most goodlooking men, it tends to attract the ones interested in just that: a pretty face and body. Look at the last post. It assumed that James should naturally have guys falling over him because he is good looking. But quality and not quantity is the point. Many of the more cerebral among the crowd will in fact avoid making contact with men like James because they assume that men like James must also be shallow and looking for no more than a bed partner based upon the mental summation of his appearance. If what James is looking for goes well beyond just the surface, then more than likely he is attracting just the opposite to himself, hence his loneliness at times. Again, I’ve been there. Not everything is pecs and ass and big equipment and good teeth. They don’t hurt, of course, but let’s show a little more depth. Please.

  22. Easy, fellas. James is dating an incredible guy with pecs, an ass, big equipment, good teeth, and of course most importantly, a remarkably sensitive heart and sharp-as-a-tack mind. I know for he is someone I once dated who’s become a dear, dear friend.
    James found himself with this opportunity and embraced this process with arms wide open, yet in the end he ended up choosing someone else, someone who bubbled up from another aspect of his multifaceted life. He remains close to Wes and many other members of the cast, but he is not in want. This show’s been a challenging blessing for him, but the man with whom he finds himself now is a blessing through and through.
    The twists were tough and the angst was real, but he’s a survivor who made the best of the curveballs thrown him – just like we all try to do. Not everything you see on TV is real, but James certainly is, and his grounded and sensitive nature is paying off for him tenfold – thankfully for him you can’t watch it on TV.

  23. Yeah!! I’m very glad to hear that. My commentary, however, really refers to James as more a symbol of many a gay man’s plight and not just him alone. I was simply using him and his example to move the discussion to a larger platform. One must assume that James would land on his feet, with or without our interest in or commentary on his life.
    It isn’t always easy. And James represents many men who do have good hearts and want that commitment but don’t always find it in obvious places. So why not try finding it on national TV! Can’t be any worse than any other place one could go trolling for it. I say Kudos to James for giving it a shot and putting himself out there.
    Now, Patrick, you don’t happen to have any other ex’s that fit that description floating around anyplace, do you? I consider myself sufficiently hot enough to warrant one of my own, thank you very much. (and yes, I have a rather wicked sense of humour that includes self-deprecation and a not so subtle cynically funny nature – it helps to counteract my rather intense and serious side. It also helped to balance me during my modeling days in Los Angeles.)

  24. SO PATRICK IS JAMES WITH BRIAN H ?

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