Even in these early reality days, MTV understood that people would do and say anything to get on TV—and on is also notable for featuring gay and lesbian contestants, a rarity at the time, but something they would continue on almost all of their future dating shows.
This courtroom-style show focused on the break-up, not the courtship, of a couple, with the guy and the girl each getting a “lawyer” to help them argue their case.
After the date, the contestant would dismiss one single and go on a date with the other.
Despite its romantic framing, the show focused more on the competition aspects of “winning” (being chosen for the date) much more than a romantic match and often simplified its contestants into a series of flirtatious bullet points.
The show was a big hit and helped push the network further towards reality programing ubiquity. ) hosted this dating competition show that attempted to honor MTV’s music roots.
It was also the beginning of another experiment: just how much could MTV script shows they labeled “reality? Contestants worked with Cabrera, a heartthrob musician at the time, to write a hit song for a hot girl they are both trying to win a date with.
The clever set ups — blind dates in bedrooms, blind dates in vans, blind dates with parents — kept generations of teens glued to the channel, much in the same way music videos had the decade prior.
And the effects of it can be seen in much of modern culture, especially technology, with apps like Tinder and Ok Cupid like a real-world versions of was hosted by Chris Hardwick and Jenny Mc Carthy and featured a single guy or a single girl weeding out a crowd of horny hotties by choosing a series of attributes (hair color, body type, “package size”) and asking erotically tinged questions.
hard already whetted the network’s appetite for hot young singles getting it on and audiences were ready for more.
What followed would become an MTV signature: scripted dating shows that favored hot (often shirtless, fit and on Spring Break) 20-somethings look for the someone to screw, not marry.
At the end of the episode the audience would vote on who was not at fault for the break-up and award them a vacation prize.
Though the hosts’ casual vibe and the set’s funky design were clearly descendants from was the network’s first attempt to merge the old and the new, taking the dating show out of the studio and into the “real world.” The highly structured (and most likely partially scripted) show followed one contestant on a date with two singles.