"Anything for Love" Review
By Shawn McKenzie 06/23/2003
I guess it makes sense that the anthology genre and the reality genre would meet someday. I’m just surprised that it hasn’t before now. Well, actually…before “reality” became a genre, there were many of these type shows in the ‘80s. From “That’s Incredible” to “Ripley’s Believe It or Not,” it is not a new phenomenon. Unless I’m forgetting one, I don’t think there has been an anthology reality show that focused on love matters yet. FOX is now bringing us one, called “Anything for Love,” and it isn’t too bad.
The show is a collection of stories about people who will do, as the title states, anything for love. It is hosted by perennial FOX reality show favorite Mark L. Walberg and a new woman named Claudia DiFolco. In the first episode, there were three stories of love and heartache. In the first story, a woman has separated from her husband of less than a year because of his addiction to strip clubs. She wants him back, so she decides to take lessons from a stripper on pole dancing. Wearing an Eyes Wide Shut-like mask, she does a pole dance for her husband at the strip club he is visiting without him knowing that it is her. She entices him and then removes her mask, where they then kiss and make up. This is actually the happiest of the three stories. I doubt their temporary reunion will last, because I bet he hasn’t seen his last strip club. In story number two, a guy thinks his actress girlfriend has been cheating on him, so he sets her up on a fake photo shoot with a good-looking photographer. The photographer starts flirting with her, and she starts flirting back, and eventually gives him her phone number. The boyfriend confronts her, and they break up. In the third story, a guy is madly in love with a woman he has only seen twice. The show brings her to the studio and introduces her to her kind-of-secret admirer. He asks her if he could start seeing her. She is justifiably creeped out and politely turns him down.
FOX was so kind as to premiere this show with not one, but two new half-hour episodes. The second episode brought us three more stories of love (or the lack of.) In the first story, a woman is still in love with her ex-boyfriend. The two broke up a while ago, and he is now living with another woman. In an act that could have been a deleted scene from Fatal Attraction, she confronts him in front of his place of employment with a huge sign strapped to a flatbed truck that reads, “Marry Me Instead Of Her!” She has it in her head that he is unhappy with his new girlfriend and really wants to get back with her. He doesn’t swallow the bait and she is baffled (and is probably now practicing her boiling of bunnies.) In the second story, a woman thinks her boyfriend is cheating on her (I wonder if the second stories have been designated the “cheating” stories?) She tests his fidelity by setting him up on a fake TV show audition. He is sat next to a hottie in a low-cut dress. They then go into an elevator that is supposed to be leading them to the audition. The woman asks him for his number, and he quickly gives it to her. When the elevator doors open, he runs into his girlfriend, who confronts him and then breaks up with him. In the third story, it was another one in the studio (the third one must be the live studio story.) A woman in her 30s is dating a younger musician, and she doesn’t trust his fidelity while touring with his band on the road. She agrees to marry him live in the studio if the results of a lie detector test they both took are pleasing to her. They are both asked some generic questions, and then he is asked the big question of whether or not he has cheated on her. He says no, but the lie detector says otherwise. He explains that he was nervous, and that is why the machine was wrong. She falls for it and they get married (but actually they didn’t, because a disclaimer following the story states that the marriage wasn’t legally binding. Okay…why do it if it doesn’t count?)
Yes, this show is incredibly cheesy, but it is so fun to watch. I think the reason why is because they don’t always end happy, and when they are obviously not going to end happy, they don’t cut away from the bad ending. The stalker sign lady’s ex-boyfriend kept asking if they could talk about this weirdness off camera, but we all fortunately got to see her dementia in full glory. I hope this show returns to some of these stories in future episodes so I can find out what happened to them (did the guy set up a pole in their living room for his wife to strip for him? Did that couple eventually marry for real?)
“Anything for Love” is fluffy TV that can be watched in any episode order, and chances are we will get some juicy stories every episode. Walberg and DiFolco are decent hosts, and the show could be addictive, just like those anthology shows of the ‘80s. As you can tell, it does get a little formulaic, and it does what FOX does best…ripping off other reality shows (lie detector…ummm, “Meet My Folks” anyone?), but at least it isn’t boring. If they keep it a summer series, I’ll be willing to watch the weird things people will do in the name of love on a weekly basis.
DO NOT MISS THIS SHOW!
Try to catch this show every week...
If a better show is on, tape this one...
If nothing else is on, maybe this will be good...
If this show is on, change the channel immediately!