"Average Joe" is a TV dating/reality show that made its debut in November of 2003 on NBC in America.
The premise of the show is that a beautiful 30-something cheerleader named Melana who is waiting in Arizona to be wooed by 16 gorgeous guys....or at least that's what she thinks. When the bus rolls in to deliver her knights in shining armor, she finds out that she's not getting the hard bodies she's expecting. Instead she gets dorks, dweebs, flabbies, and some uggos. I guess she shouldn't have told the producers that "personality matters". While watching the show I noticed that only a few of them were real Average Joes. The rest of them seemed to be over-the-top homely.
Melana's reaction is classic. As the guys steps off the bus her joyful, giddy school girl smile turns into one of those smiles you give someone after they give you a gift you didn't really want, but you feel you have to show some sort of appreciation.
After the guys each stepped off the bus one by one and introduced themselves, they got a chance to impress her in a party by the pool. Melana starts to open up to the idea of being charmed by people who are a little less of a looker then the average TV man.
As the show progressed I found myself rooting for certain guys (mostly the underdogs, like Dennis Luciani) and booing the cheaters (like Zach Cohen).
In each episode, Melana learned more about her suitors through group and individual dates. There were competitions in order to win a personal date with Melana, like ATV racing and cliff climbing. There was backstabbing and you finally started to learn who was compatible with Melana and who was not. Sometimes I wanted to just stick my hands inside the TV and shake her into her senses when she started falling for the jerk of the bunch.
Finally, when there were only four guys left, it became big elimination time. I got excited to see which to Average Joes won Melana's heart the most.
All of that fell apart.
The producers did something that made my blood boil, and still does. At this high point in the show they decided to throw in four hunks. Thanks guys!
The hunks were your average, "Look at me! I'm so handsome" types, except for one, who just looked like a greasy Euro.
Next episode, they all got a date with Melana, hunks and dorks alike. Near the end of the episode Melana decides to disguise herself as Melana's fat, fudge-loving cousin to see how much personality they all have. After that, all the jerks were gone. I could finally breathe again. But she still had one hunk and one Joe to choose between.
The hunk's name was Jason. He's in his mid 20's, going to college and he's a waiter. Plus, he still lives at home. His chemistry with Melana involves some sweet moments, but it was mostly physical. You could tell she just loved looking at him.
The last Joe standing was named Adam. He's in his early 30's, has his own apartment and is a rich stock broker. Every time he was with Melana he made her laugh. He's also more romantic then Jason. He wrote her a poem and when they were on a date in New York City they went to a bar he was part owner of and he had items on the menu to choose from that reminded Melana of different moments they shared. On their last date, he gave her a truckload of gifts.
On the last episode, Melana finally has to choose. Who will it be? The hunk or the Average Joe? She was standing in an airport hangar with a private jetplane to her right that would wisk her and her new lover to a tropical island for a five night vacation. On her left was a bus that would ship the loser home.
A limo pulls up. Hunky Jason steps out. Melana starts her speil. Her voice starts to go down in disappointment as she talks of the times they shared, but then it goes back up as she says, "Jason, will you fly away with me?"
At this point, I'm pounding my fists and shouting obsenities directed to the producers of this huge mockery of a show. Adam got sent home on the bus and I turned off the TV. The show is called Average Joe, so the Joe should get the girl! Not some pretty boy, cardboard cut-out! To think I spent five hours of my life on this tripe!
Average Joe: Hawaii comes out in the spring. I'll take my chances on American Idol instead.
Update: I recently found out that Melana has hooked up with Zach and dumped Jason. Adam has been dating and is having a serious relationship with a beautiful woman. I guess some shows do have happy endings.