Is your life perfect? Does it just get better every year? Is it like this slope, like, that you’ve just climbed? Never had any major downturns? Right on! Then you, like our hero Matt, are ready to recap the second installment of Most Eligible Dallas.
Bravo called last night’s episode “Take the Bull by the Horns.” Bravo is wrong. It should have been called “Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places.” Because, aside from eating meals and debating the evils of single motherhood, this week, the gang seeks romance. Drew employs a matchmaker. Tara takes a chance on an old friend. Glenn looks at soft-porn. Courtney pursues an ill-advised love affair with the word “literally.” So love is in the air.
Let’s start with Neill because she clearly won the episode. Things don’t start great for her: Matt attempts to romance her stone with some coffee at Universal Rehearsal. Neill is rehearsing some new tunes with her band. (Future hits include titles such as “Mage Against the Machine,” “La Mage Aux Folles,” and “The Theme for Major Dad.”) Despite being rich (“It’s real good to be me,” he says earlier at work, sporting his formal fleece office attire), Matt doesn’t bring coffee for any of her bandmates, so they have to get lost.
This leaves our dynamic duo the opportunity to cuddle on the creepy leopard-print couch and discuss whether Rick Perry has what it takes to win a national election. No, no. They discuss—what else?—Courtney and her horrible treatment of Neill at the ill-fated dinner party from last episode. Matt apologizes for Court and remarks on Neill’s strong personality. (He punctuates it by showing off his “Live Strong” bracelet.) But Neill is having none of it. She cuts to the chase and asks: “Does Courtney like you?” When Matt demurs, she answers, “Matt, I’m blond, but I’m not really blond.”
Stating the obvious does not alone make Neill the least awful person this episode. It’s her handling of a drunk Courtney at Al Biernat‘s near the end of the episode that does it. Courtney is on a tear. She’s eating carbs. She’s drinking Mondavi. She’s complaining about Neill’s punctuality. (“Well, I’m glad you’re a size two after having a baby, but I just ate three pounds of carbs. Thanks for being late, brat.”) She’s lying. (“I’m happy to see [Neill]. I would like to literally get to know her.”) And this all happens before Neill even shows up. But once Neill appears, Court steps it up. She slurs. She smiles that weird smile. She peppers Neill with questions: “What’s going on? Where are you from? So you move a lot?” She calls Maje’s dad “the baby daddy.” And when Neill corrects her, she says, “I’m a little quirky. I like to poke fun of things that I think are awkward.”
But Neill handles it all pretty well. Yes, she has that habit of making totally weird expressions, but she manages to stay calm and sober during this nightmare dinner. (Why, Al Biernat? Why?) She simply admits to kissing Matt, thus killing Courtney dead. And later in her post-dinner interview, she kicks the corpse. “I realized Courtney has been really wasted every time we’ve hung out. Every time. And every time it’s been a train wreck. I mean, I’m not a life counselor, but Courtney should lay off the booze,” she says, the picture of wide-eyed innocence.
Our second-place winner is Tara. She really is the best person on the show, but she hasn’t faced any challenges yet, so she has to settle for second. Yes, Tara also attends the disaster dinner at Al’s, and she wisely says nothing, choosing instead to eat bread. Not a bad call, but she should have told Courtney, “You need to shut your mouth—literally.” But that’s probably not Tara’s style.
In the love department, Tara decides to take a chance on her old friend Jody Dean. Before you make some “old” jokes, Courtney has already beaten that horse. “This guy is super old. Like, literally, this guy is, like, ancient from what I know.” She follows it up with a denture joke. After she’s run through her material, she asks,”Does he have baggage?” Umm..yeah. He does.
But Court’s negativity and Jody’s suitcases and soul patch aside, Tara is excited about the date. And the whole thing is kind of cute. She wears sequins to Splitsville, a bowling alley very, very, very far away. Jody attempts to show her how to bowl, but Tara has a lot on her mind. She’s concerned that Splitsville traffics in used socks. She’s dreaming about Jody’s size 13 shoes (You know what they say, “The larger the foot, the larger the soul patch”). She misses her brother, Tod Lubitch. You know, the boy from the plastic bubble? Yeah, she, too, is “100 percent germaphobic. I guarantee they never wash those balls. It’s disgusting.” It bears repeating that Tara spends a great deal of time in shelters rescuing dogs, so this might be a bit of an exaggeration.
But anyway, it’s a perfectly cute date. Tara bowls a strike. Jody makes small talk about hiring a Mafia hitman when his daughter begins to date. Yeah, Tara says weird things like, “It was so sexy to see Jody be so, like, papa bear protective over his kids…because that’s what I want out of whoever I’m with to be about our children.” And Jody hits a car and practically falls off the porch after awkwardly kissing Tara. But, for the most part, it was all pretty darn cute, soul patch or no.
Third place goes to our friend Drew, who redeemed himself nicely this go. Yes, Drew drags on the (electronic?) cigarette once, but I’m giving him a pass because our Fatboy Slim is so clearly dealing with self-esteem issues. Drew would like to find someone who can keep up with his “rabbit-like symptoms of horniness.” He’s tired of the grind—he goes out every night “on the weekends.” (That’s only two nights, but whatevs.) He’s tired of the one-night stands. He’s ready to be in a proper relationship with kids and everything, so he employs the services of Sarah Norton, matchmaker to the stars.
It should be noted that Sarah Norton does not have an office. She does not own a computer. She does not have head shots on file—unless you count the one of Sarah Norton from 1977, which hangs right behind her desk. You have to trust Sarah Norton to very methodically go through the contents of her recipe box. She will choose just the perfect index card for each of her very famous and successful clients.
Once the date is set up, Drew is “skeptible.” He arrives at the appointed restaurant and is greeted by J.P., a red-headed man from Mexico. “I have never seen a red-headed Mexican before in my life,” Drew complains. “She set me up with an endangered species.” (For the record, my favorite comedian, Louis CK, is a redhead, and his father is a native Mexican. Louis actually grew up for a time in Mexico City. Ginsburgs, please use some of that money for education.) There is a real problem with J.P., though. He is a tiny dancer. Drew kindly estimates that the guy is 5-foot-7. I don’t think so.
Things do not work out for J.P. and Drew. Sarah Norton, matchmaker to the rich and famous, has failed.
All is not lost, though. Later in the episode, Drew has a man-date with Glenn on the Katy Trail. I mean, it’s obviously a non-date, man-date because Glenn is not gay! But the two do meet at the Katy Trail—Drew has already biked White Rock earlier, just in case you were wondering—for a little workout. “You know I can’t do impact,” Drew says, one eyebrow curled. After the laugh track dies down, the men start running—perhaps the most high-impact form of exercise, by the way. They run and run and run and run. About 100 yards later, they stop for a breather and small talk. “Glenn is honest. He’s real, and he’s very protective of me,” Drew gloats. And it’s so true. Glenn offers to train Drew for $5,000 an hour, because he’s a saint as well as a busy businessman.
Speaking of Glenn, Mr. Clean wins fourth place. Glenn spent most of the episode admiring the torso of a half-naked dude. You guys! It was his own torso! He’s not gay! This go, Kari the photographer and Erik the sports agent pay a visit to the attic that Drew lives in. (He’s like Monroe—with hair!— from Too Close for Comfort. A straight Monroe!) While on hiatus from her work at Vogue, Kari wants to show Glenn the results from their high-fashion shoot at Nylo. “I like that one,” Glenn says, studying an image of himself. “Yeah, that’s pretty sweet,” he says after seeing another. Finally overcome by emotion, he steps away from the computer, saying, “I can’t take this no more.” Should we expect to see Glenn in Milan once he gets released from his contract with the Raiders? Probably. “The pictures were pretty amazing,” he says. “I thought I was looking pretty good, I’m not going to lie. I think we might have something here.”
Moving on, despite bleeding orange and being an incredible athlete, businessperson, friend, and man, Matty gets fifth place this go. But not for lack of trying. In addition to providing cuddles and coffee to Neill, he also takes his lady friend Kat on a date on Friday night. Why Friday? “In Dallas, Friday night is date night,” he says. “That’s the night if you’re going to go on a date, you do it.” On the way to pick up his fair maiden, he calls his other “very good friends” Shannon and Brittnye and invites them to supper at Eddie V’s, too.
Why would Matty do this? “There’s no point in doing anything if you’re not going to do it to the max,” he explains. So despite calling super-blond Kat his “go-to” and a “total package,” he’s gotta go to the max. Everyone knows two’s company, but four is a party. After all, Matt is just being Matt. “I’m not hiding anything. I’m not a player. I’m not about playing games,” he says from an arcade. (Not really.)
Honest minute: for a second when his buddy Brittnye was speaking, I thought it was my Grandma Eisman. Then I remembered that my Grandma Eisman is dead. But before she died, Grandma Eisman really liked to smoke cigarettes, drink big-girl drinks, order items from Omaha Steaks, and say inappropriate things. But even Grandma Eisman would be saddened by Brittnye. “Only Matt would be on a date with three broads,” she chortles at one point. Later, she reminisces: “Remember that one time when we rubbed self-tanner on Matt?” Also, the spelling of Brittnye’s name is stupid.
And that leaves us with the loser of the episode: Courtney. Oh, Court, you lose for so many reasons. You lose because you don’t want to be married because you’re Southern; you want to be married because you’re unemployed. You lose because your “seven eight nine” tattoo right below your boob, fake tan, and silly bump-its make you less “Southern” than “South Jersey.” You lose because you think a young woman you don’t know deciding to have a baby is “like, literally, someone slapping me across the face.” You lose because you use “literally” all the time. Worse, you use it wrong.You lose because you think you’re being clever when you spout stuff like,”Why don’t you agree with the fact that I use condoms and don’t have babies? That I’m responsible.” You lose because you say things like, “Nobody likes a fat single girl” and “Gotta get tan, so I can get a man.” You lose because when complaining about the heat, you say, “It just got 10 decibels hotter.” But most of all, you lose because you failed your fake employer Amber Venz. In the last scene of the show, when you “woke up,” you forgot to put on the requisite necklace, three bracelets, and gigantic ring. You lose.
Tune in to see how Courtney and the others fare next week.
Image: Matt Nordgren (right) with Tom Green in July 2010. Photo by Jerry McClure for D Magazine.