Grantland Reality Fantasy League: The Greatest Excuse in Television History

ABC Bachelorette

Look, I’m smart enough to know that I’m not smart enough to understand all the implications of the breakdown between DirecTV and Viacom. But I would like to point out that one of the results of the breakdown in their negotiations, the fact that I no longer have Viacom channels in my living room, is un-freaking-acceptable. I don’t care how much you charge me, DirecTV — I will pay anything, absolutely anything, to get Real World, Snooki and JWOWW, and Love and Hip Hop Atlanta back in my life because “We have to get me some damn TV. I need my channels back.” You hear me, DirecTV? This has already gone to a weird place. On Thursday night, I considered reading a book.

Here are the leading scorers from a week that really put a spotlight on what is hindering The Bachelorette this season: Emily Maynard can’t carry this show.

Top Scorers

Sean (The Bachelorette, House), 25 points: Too Perfect Sean was shocked when he was sent home this week, because he spent the whole first half of the episode making out with Emily The Mom (4 x 5 = 20 points) and even notched 5 bonus points when he pulled off a hot tub snog. While this so-handsome-and-wholesome-he-somehow-is-loathsome fella did and said all the right things, there was one very telling exchange that demonstrated his lack of understanding of the worldview of most heterosexual female human beings:

Sean: “Anybody say anything that stood out? My family?”
What Emily Hears: “Now is the opportunity to ask me about the weird thing that my family told you.”

Emily: “Yeah, they said that your past girlfriends have been, like, buddies.”
Sean: “Maybe I treated them like buddies.”
What Emily Hears: “There is a chance that you will be absolutely miserable in a relationship with me.”

Emily: “How so?”
Sean: “Um, I think they are probably referring to my last girlfriend. I had one three-year relationship and I loved her. I really did. She was such a special person. But it came to a point where I realized that she wasn’t right for me, I wasn’t going to spend my life with her. I wasn’t in love with her, I loved her, but I wasn’t in love with her. It sounds kind of cliché, but I think because I wasn’t in love with her I didn’t do the sweet things that a boyfriend should do. Like holding hands or kissing and all that stuff.”
What Emily Hears: “If you get into a relationship with me I will eventually fall out of love with you, stop being affectionate, and never, ever have sex with you. This isn’t something that I can control. This is part of the fiber of my being. So if you want to marry me, that’s cool and everything, but just understand that I will eventually stop treating you like my wife and start treating you like Travis, the second baseman on my softball team.

This is essentially like Sean interviewing someone to work for him and him saying, “At first, your salary will be $67,000 a year, and then after a couple years I will inexplicably stop paying you. Still interested?”

Trey and Laura (Real World, Simmons and Lisanti), 15 points: I’ve written before that if your significant other ever says to you, “I am going on the Real World,” what they really are saying to you is, “I am going to start sleeping with other people; we can either break up now or break up on the phone at 3:00 a.m. on national television while I am inslopsicated and about to crawl into my roommate’s bed to coitus and/or vomit.”

Well, Trey from Real World decided to break up with his “girlfriend back home” before coming on the show and immediately started hooking up with his roommate/ex-lingerie football league quarterback Laura. After an evening of awkward dancing, the two of them coitused (25 points) because, well, I’ll let Laura explain why: “I tried to be good and then my vagina took over, and that was the end of that.”

This phrase just became the excuse for all of my future bad behavior. “Why was I speeding? Sorry, officer, I tried to be good and then my vagina took over, and that was the end of that.”

LuAnn (Real Housewives of New York City, Jacoby), 10 points: Grantlander Juliet Litman hipped me to Countess LuAnn’s super-cringey music videos on YouTube earlier this week. Feel free to click those links, but I want to warn you that these two “songs” may very well be the kill shot to music as a form of art. So on this Real Housewives of New York City, when LuAnn declared, “Heather has inspired me to make a new song” (10 plug points), it was basically the musical equivalent of Dwight Howard saying, “LeBron has inspired me to make a one-hour special hosted by Jim Grey announcing my intention to leave Orlando.”

Jeff With One F (The Bachelorette, Lisanti), 10 points: There are few things that irk me more than people who plug their noses when they jump into water. Emily The Mom is a person that plugs her nose when she jumps into water. What are you afraid of? Evolution/God/aliens/whatever (you know, depending what you’re into) shaped the human body in such a way that there is no need to plug your nose when you jump in water, but, like, 20 percent of the population doesn’t know this and it is one of the most annoying phenomenons this side of the word “totes.”

Anyway, with Sean out of the picture it’s down to Jeff With One F and Arie The Race Car Driver That Slept With Emily’s Bestie And Never Told Her to make out with Emily The Mom (3 x 5 = 15 points) and compete for her hand in marriage. As I do every week for fear of offending someone and losing my job, here are a few quotes from or about Jeff With One F presented without commentary:

Jeff With One F, Before Even Being Invited to the Fantasy Suite: “I think it would be awesome if you could forgo our individual rooms and spend some time in a fantasy suite together in Curacao. That would be great. But I have to respect that your daughter is going to be watching this, my family is going to be watching this, your family is going to be watching this, and they are involved in this process too. There’s a time and a place, you know? I plan on spending every night with you in our own fantasy suite.”
On Scale of 1 to 10, How Hard It Is to Not Offer Commentary on This Quote: 8.5
On Scale of 1 to 10, How Likely It Is That I’d Get Fired If I Offered Commentary on This Quote: 9.0

Emily the Mom in an Interview: “I love where my relationship with Jef is right now. My biggest fear is that his family has not approved of a girl in the past and I hope they like me.”
On Scale of 1 to 10, How Hard It Is to Not Offer Commentary on This Quote: 6.7
On Scale of 1 to 10, How Likely It Is That I’d Get Fired If I Offered Commentary on This Quote: 10

Jef With One F in an Interview: “The way this whole thing has come together is like a crazy painting that I didn’t understand at first because I couldn’t understand it. But I took a step back, [and now] I see the masterpiece that is being painted.”
On Scale of 1 to 10, How Hard It Is to Not Offer Commentary on This Quote: A kagillion
On Scale of 1 to 10, How Likely It Is That I’d Get Fired If I Offered Commentary on This Quote: A fazillion

Robb (Real World, Connor), 10 points: Rob With Two Bs on Real World also has the “girl back home” thing going on but is super-flirty with his roommate Marie the International Heineken Smuggler. In a nice moment at the beginning of the episode, his girl back home tells him, “I need to tell you this and I don’t want you to be freaked out by it, OK? I literally have no interest in any other guy touching me.” Then, of course, at the end of the episode, she tells him that she had sex with someone else.

It is at this moment, hearing this confession, that we learn how Rob With Two Bs handles emotional adversity — he beats the shit out of himself. Right when she breaks the news to him, he takes the phone and smashes himself in the face with it five or six times (10 points for assaulting inanimate object). Whoever created the proverb “absence makes the heart grow fonder” was probably on an ancient version of the Real World and trying to convince himself that his Neanderthal girlfriend wasn’t going to cheat on him while he was gone.

Arie (The Bachelorette, Simmons), 15 points: Emily made out with Arie a ton this week (3 x 15 = 15 points) and explained why she didn’t give Arie an opportunity to have an overnight date: “Arie doesn’t just tell me he likes me, he shows me that. Arie is so good-looking. I mean, that’s the problem. Tonight is the fantasy suite overnight date. It’s a struggle for me because he is so good-looking that when I am around him I just want to be, like, touching him. But as a role model and as a mother I just can’t. I am just not going to give him the fantasy suite card. At the end of the day I just don’t trust myself. I just don’t want to go there. But oh lord is he hot.”

That is her way of avoiding an “I tried to be good and then my vagina took over and that was the end of that” situation on national television.

Anyway, Arie might actually win this thing, but this week’s GRTFL Top Five is the top five reasons that Emily shouldn’t pick Arie, listed from “they could probably get past that” to “she would be a better match for Tom Cruise”:

5. He is a Glazed Doughnut: Arie has an omnipresent film of sweat on him that makes him look like a Krispy Kreme. That has to be a red flag of some sort. Not sure why, but a dude that looks like a glazed doughnut cannot be trusted.

4. He’s a Little Too Comfortable With Sea Creatures: You have to be concerned about someone who’s super OK with jumping into the open ocean and swimming around with wild dolphins. That just isn’t natural.

3. He Wants to Be Famous: According to his ex-girlfriend, “he’s in it for the fame.”

2. He, Ya Know, Slept With Your Friend and Didn’t Tell You: Does that really need an explanation?

1. His Lifestyle Can Be Best Described As “Fratty”: When she says to Arie, “I feel really close to you, but I don’t know what you do on, like, a Tuesday morning. I don’t know what you do.” He then explains that if he isn’t on the road racing he normally wakes up at nine, goes to work, gets off work at six, and goes out to dinner every night. Nothing says “perfect guy to father your daughter” like someone who sleeps past when she has to be at school and stays out after she will be in bed … when he isn’t on the road as a professional athlete.

Heather (Real Housewives of New York City, Lisanti), 10 points: Heather won’t shut up about her damn shapewear line (10 plugging points) and acts like she’s empowering women one control top at a time. I keep waiting for someone to say to her, “Heather, you aren’t leading the civil rights movement here. You’re making knockoff Spanx — take the ‘I am a hero’ routine down a gillion notches,” but it never happens.

Marie (Real World, Simmons), 9 points: Marie the International Heineken Smuggler got a little slammered this week (9 points) on Real World and had this exchange with Rob With Two Bs:

Marie the International Heineken Smuggler: “I just want you to know if I get really drunk and I try to have sex with you, don’t have sex with me.”
Rob With Two Bs: “I have too much respect for you to do that.”

Ladies, any man that ever says this to you is a liar. I know it’s counter-intuitive, but you are better off with the guy who says, “Honestly, I am going to keep plying you with alcohol every day until that happens” than the guy who says, “I have too much respect for you to do that” a hundred times out of a hundred.

Aviva (Real Housewives of New York City, Simmons), 5 points: Aviva made a mention of her second home in Miami, scoring her five points. I can’t wait until this column becomes super-popular, makes me millions of dollars, and I buy a second home so when people come over I can say to them, “Welcome, this is the home that fraudulent claims of coitus built.”

Check back next week for more GRTFLy goodness and let me know in the comment section below what shows you think should be added to the league in the fall. I refuse to let another gem/turd like Love and Hip Hop Atlanta fly under the radar.

Filed Under: ABC, Bravo, Emily Maynard, Mtv, Real Housewives of New York City, Real World, Reality Television, Reality TV Fantasy League

David Jacoby is an ESPN producer who somehow became a writer and editor for Grantland.

Archive @ djacoby

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