Grantland Reality TV Fantasy League: Just the Most Important Things From Your Special Shows This Week

I tried hard to get into Couples Therapy and do a deep dive into the dynamics of the duos for this week’s GRTFL, but halfway through the second episode, a weird thing happened: I realized I didn’t care about any of these people. No way would I disrespect the integrity of the GRTFL by focusing on whether Jenna Jameson is going to be able to work out her issues with her cauliflower-eared, Vegas-personified man du jour. Instead, we are going to carefully digest all the shows we are watching at GRTFL headquarters and distill them down to “The Most Important Thing.” There will be some awkward diving.

The Most Important Thing That Happened on Couples Therapy Is … the Vindication of Juan Pablo

Remember Juan Pablo? Barely, right? It’s hard to believe that once upon an Us Weekly cover, he was the most important person in American media. His insignificance has never been more pronounced than right now. At this moment he is three episodes into Couples Therapy and no one is talking about it, no one cares, and, I assume, no one is watching except me.

For those not well versed in Juan Pablo’s origin story, he is a handsome young Venezuela-raised man who was on Dez’s season of The Bachelorette. After Dez dismissed him, he was chosen to be “El Bachelor.” During his season of The Bachelor, you could tell he was not a warm person. His interviews with Chris Harrison felt like interrogations, he told Clare (of Bachelor in Paradise fame) that the thing he liked most about her was “fucking her,” and then he was eviscerated by Andi after an evening in the fantasy suite. The producers turned on him, the audience turned on him, and even Harrison turned on him when Juan Pablo refused to tell the woman he’d selected, Nikki, that he loved her. Everyone hated Juan Pablo, and that’s when the book was closed on Juan Pablo … until he popped up on Couples Therapy.


I have no idea why people go on this show. If you really have problems in your relationship and you want to work those out through therapy, why would you choose to do it on national television? Methinks the relationship these celebrities are really trying to improve in front of the cameras isn’t with their significant other, it’s with their accountant. WHY ELSE IS GHOSTFACE KILLAH WORKING ON HIS RELATIONSHIP ON VH1? When Juan Pablo and Nikki arrived, you could tell that Juan Pablo still was kind of a dick to Nikki. Same old, same old, right?

Wrong. Everything flipped. About two days into filming, in shots that were clearly not meant to air, Nikki was cursing at producers, complaining about the film schedule, and refusing to cooperate with the therapy. When Deena suggested the public will turn on her when they see how she is acting, Nikki blurts something like, “Good, maybe they will stop bothering me while I am eating now!” At one point during an interview, when Nikki is being all tantrum-y in the background, Juan Pablo looks right at the lens and says, “See? See what I deal with.” This would have completely changed the narrative on Juan Pablo forever if, you know, anybody watched Couples Therapy.

The Second-Most Important Thing: Treach from Naughty by Nature tried to catch a lizard with a salad spinner. Anyone with a salad spinner knows this is a great tool for the job. Also, anyone with a salad spinner no longer has any room in their kitchen.

The Most Important Thing That Happened on Survivor was … THIS

What the hell is that? Who jumps into the water like that? Is this a coordinated effort? What the hell is happening?

The Second-Most Important Thing: Everyone watching them dive in the water like fools:


The Most Important Thing That Happened on Utopia was … Semi-Cancellation

Utopia had always planned to scale back to one night a week, but my guess is that it wasn’t meant to scale back this quickly. And it wasn’t meant to land on Fridays. At this point I may be the only person still watching this show; even my wife is getting bored of it, and two weeks ago she was emailing Utopia and booking us a yoga sesh. I STILL RIDE FOR THIS SHOW, THOUGH, LONG LIVE UTOPIA.

The Second-Most Important Thing: They started voting people off this week, which really felt like a once-innovative show’s attempt to revert back to the reality TV norm and draw some viewers with a familiar format. Keep Utopia weird! Also, keep Red around; that guy is the best.


The Most Important Thing That Happened on Below Deck Was … Runaway Boat!

When the Ohana docked in the British Virgin Islands, everything was cool until the boat just decided it had had enough of the exploitative nature of reality television and drove itself off the dock. Everything would have been fine had the boat not been, you know, tied to the dock with ropes the size of a speedskater’s thighs. The boat bent a pile on the dock, the crew freaked out, and everyone watching realized that actual boating drama isn’t nearly as interesting as people-on-the-boat drama. Thank god they were soon back to serving breakfast wine. Oh, did I mention the guy who wanted cabernet sauvignon at breakfast? I get having a mimosa … even a pinot grigio, fuck, you’re on vacation. But a cabernet at breakfast? That is savage.

The Second-Most Important Thing: A new deckhand arrived on the Ohana and it took two nights before Amy and Kat were fighting over him in a hot tub.

The Most Important Thing That Happened on The Singles Project Was … It Ended

As I watched this show end, I said to myself, “Will they do another season?” I fear they won’t. Believe me, they have plenty of reason to write this show off as a failed experiment. Reasons like “no one watched it,” “it wasn’t entertaining,” and “nothing happened.” That said, I think the format has potential. Televised, real-time dating is going to be a thing; we just aren’t there yet. Can you imagine if The Bachleor was like the MLB playoffs or the NCAA tournament and there was a play-in spot left for viewers? How much fun would that be? I believe in The Singles Project. I don’t believe this cast or these producers are the ones to pull it off, but if I were a Bravo exec (get at me, Andy Cohen), I would make some tweaks and give this show another chance.

The Second-Most Important Thing: I FOUND THE CAST THREAD FOR THE CHALLENGE ON VEVMO. Seriously, when is The Challenge coming back?

Listen to the Right Reasons, don’t drink wine at breakfast, if you dive into water just dive into it normally, and, most importantly, enjoy the shit out of your weekend.

Filed Under: Reality TV, TV, Survivor: Blood vs. Water, The Singles Project, Below Deck, utopia

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

Archive @ djacoby

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