Let’s just get this out the way now: In terms of format, The Choice is based on NBC’s The Voice. I’m far from the first or last person to point out the similarities, and I’m sure those same similarities turned a lot of viewers off without ever watching the show. I was almost one of those people, but fortunately, I accidentally (seriously!) recorded and ended up watching what just knocked Baggage off its former standing as my favorite game show (outside of the classics, of course).
I’m not sure if it was the contestants or the celebs (more on both of those later), but The Choice‘s first episode was quite the enjoyable experience. Cat Deeley is already well-versed in handling quirky personalities from her SYTYCD duties, and she gets to have a little more fun with that skill as host of this show.
There are “four of the world’s most desirable bachelors” (or at least there were in the first episode, lady celebs will get a shot at some point) and they find their dream date like this:
- Blind Round: Bubbly (and a few more reserved) contestants take 30 seconds to convince the celebs to turn around (by pulling the ‘love handle’) and pick them. Just like The Voice, except we’re not bored with any “getting to know the contestant” intros and we’re less invested in whether or not the lucky lady (or gentlemen) is picked. If more than one celeb turns around, the prospective date gets to make a pick and the celebs have to pretend like they’re heartbroken at being “rejected”. At the end of this round, the celeb acquires a team of three potential dates.
- Speed Dating Round: The first-run of this round was a little weird. Clearly the celebs thought they were supposed to ask all the questions, but the ladies had a few generic questions to ask themselves. At the end of this round, the celeb gets rid of one person from their team.
- Question Round: In the final round, each celeb asks their last two remaining picks a question and based on the answers, the celeb has 10 seconds to pick their date. I’m not sure why, but the chairs turned around during those arbitrary seconds and once it’s over, the celeb runs to the stage and crushes one person’s dreams. Two of the guys were especially quick with their decisions.
Episode 1’s celebs were DJ Pauly D, Romeo (formerly Lil’ Romeo), Jeremy Bloom and Jason Cook (the only Shawn Brady as far as I’m concerned), and they were HILARIOUS. They played off each other well, didn’t take the show too seriously and had fun interacting with the ladies. The female contestants were all varying degrees of gorgeous. Some were high-energy and obviously knew how to work the crowd, while others seemed like they were picked off the street and thrown onto the show with very little prepping. All of this flowed together to make the show feel relatively less staged than most reality TV these days. I plan to tune in next week to see how the dates went, but mostly to find out if the hilarity of this episode was a fluke or something I can expect from the show.
Catch next week’s The Choice on Thursday (6/14) @ 9/8c
Nicole is a TV junkie and TVDM helps her feed a lifelong addiction. She can be found here, providing biased commentary (sprinkled with a few Pop Up Video-esque insights) on her favorite shows, every week.