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But the plot’s reductive pretense revolved around the fact that some of the suitors were secretly straight.
The show’s driving question became whether the titular “boy” would be able to tell the straights from the gays.
As the show’s gay producer and creator, Douglas Ross, admitted at the time, “If it were just a gay dating show, for sure we'd get a lot of gay viewers, probably not that many straight [viewers], [and] some looky-loos.
But we felt by putting [the twist] in, we would get a much broader audience.”MTV’s own 2007 offering, A Shot at Love With Tila Tequila, was the rare reality show featuring an Asian American star.
But as a fan of the show in its heyday, I'll present this counterpoint: How funny was it when the parents would high-five each other if one of their date setups went well?
(Host Lance Bass possessed all the shiny, plastic charisma of a grocery store green apple.)These shows were not explicitly focused on the actual challenges posed by dating as a queer, gender-nonconforming person in a straight world.The cast enacts physical embodiments of the hell of dating, such as races where participants jump over obstacles labeled with problems like “fear of commitment.” Winners of these challenges are rewarded with one-on-one dates and the opportunity to vote on whom they think is a “true” pair.If they figure out all the correct pairings before the end of the season, the housemates will win a million dollars.Queerness on reality dating shows has mostly been treated superficially, like with the trope of the sudden reveal.Boy Meets Boy, which aired in 2003 on Bravo, involved a Bachelor-style butch gay guy finding love among 15 suitors.