7 TV Dating Shows That Stole Our Hearts

September 11, 2009 by  
Filed under - Home, Features

Lonely and willing to embarrass yourself on national telly?

Then you’d be perfect for a dating show!

Answer some cheesy questions and degrade yourself a little bit and you can win your dream partner!

OK, we may have overestimated the prize here because let’s face it, if you’re that hot you probably don’t need to be on a dating show. Unless you’re a fame ho.

To celebrate the launch of the brilliant Dating In The Dark on Living we decided to stroll down heartbreak avenue and look at our favourite dating shows. Ending more often in disaster than relationship bliss, dating shows have often been a staple of our weekend telly viewings, but in the UK they seemed to have faded away.

Well we’re glad to see them coming back and coming back in the dark. Because let’s face it, everyone’s good looking when the lights go out.

So let’s look back at these televisual gems and thank God that we weren’t on them.

Then go hug your cat and tell yourself that you’re alone by choice.


You probably didn’t see this show and if that’s true then we applaud you because it means you have a smidgen of class.

If you did watch it then join us in the pit of TV despair.

Eligible bachelors have beautiful women compete for their affection and hopefully true love blossoms in the gigantic palace of love that they have to live together in.

The men are too gorgeous and the women are beyond bitchy. On regular elimination nights, the bachelor must decide which women will stay in the game by giving them a rose. How he manages to choose a girl out of these harridans is beyond us.

When they’re not stabbing each other in the back all the girls are sobbing into the bachelor’s strong arms saying how much she loves him after meeting two days before.

Check out what happened when the bachelor was British in season 12.


“You gotta go, you gotta go!”

Sound familiar? While that may be something that’s shouted at you by your partner on a regular basis, it was also the catchphrase of MTV’s Singled Out.

It was the hottest dating show of the time where all the contestants were young and for once they were kinda hot. It was hosted by the equally hot and hilarious Jenny McCarthy and Chris Hardwick.

The ‘picker’ chose categories for their potential partners and then a number of the 50 eager guys or gals were culled in favour of the picker’s choices.

We’d show the British version of the show but typically it was totally rubbish.

Look out for the Gordon Ramsay lookalike in the red jacket being eliminated in the first round.


We’re not gonna lie: we really miss Graham and his quick recaps.

Saturday night TV was not the same without everyone’s favourite flame haired queen of romance, Cilla Black and the host of eligible cheeseballs who were on the show.

‘If you could be any animal, what would you be?’
‘I’d be an eagle because your love makes my heart soar.’

While we cringed endlessly, it was strangely hypnotic, watching these people make idiots out of themselves. Check out these hopefuls.

America loves a dating show and if you can believe it, their version of Blind Date is even funnier than ours.

Handily there are little messages and thought bubbles that appear as the obviously mismatched couple go on their date. Trust us it’s so funny, you should set aside an hour out of your day because you’ll want to watch them all.


You’re on a date with someone and you’ve had a fantastic time.

The wine and conversation have been flowing and you’re walking home. You pull in for a kiss. Closer. Closer. They press their body up against yours and… hold on. That’s not supposed to be there.

Yes, we’ve all been on a date with someone who turned out to be a transgender but There’s Something About Miriam also threw ten grand into the equation.

Six guys competed for the affections of Miriam, an incredibly hot man-lady who kept her secret from them up until the final moments. One critic called the show “the cruellest reality show idea yet” but the look on the guys faces at the end was totally worth it.

Let’s take a look a Miriam’s big… reveal.


While we’re still a tad confused as to how this show was allowed on air, you have to admit, it was the best car crash TV going at the time.

Full of simpletons and attention-seekers, the best thing about the show was probably the occasional pan of the beautiful Fijian island on which the show was filmed.

The ‘celebrities’ that took part weren’t looking for love as much as they were bored and were looking for something to do. Or someone to do.

In the first series it was the viewers that decided who should stay and fall in love but in the second season the romance was left up to the islanders. Talk about taking the fun out of it.

The contestant were trashtastic tabloid fodder for the most part; ‘singers’, models, soap actors and footballers. Let’s see them strut their stuff in the opening titles of season one.


If our mothers chose all of our dates, chances are we’d have had a noose around our necks from day one, but this show took it to a whole other level.

Momma’s Boys featured young studlies whose mothers were overbearing harpies who insisted that mother knows best.

Constantly cawing about the fact that none of these tramps were good enough for their little boys, the mother’s ended up looking like Disney villainesses, practically offering poisoned apples to any woman who dared corrupt their child.

A bevy of beauties tried to impress the guys and their mums but if they couldn’t pass Mommie Dearest’s test then they were booted out. That’s why it’s always men that kill their mothers.

We could have shown you a clip from the show but to showcase the genius/stupidity of the show we’re going to pass you over to Chelsea Handler of the high-larious talk show, Chelsea Lately.


Usually when strangers approach us in the street we bat them away with our handbags and immediately blow our rape whistle but if Davina McCall came running up to us we might reconsider.

Back in the 90s, when Davina was as mad as a box of frogs, she was a lot more fun. Manically combing the streets looking to pair up total strangers, Davina brought love to you, minus soul destroying eliminations or cheesy pick up lines.

The show was basically a big game of ‘my friend likes you.’

We tried to get a clip for you, honestly we did, but unfortunately all we could find was Holly Willoughby and her boobs bouncing around the streets.

Emily Moulder

Feeling lonely because you’re just watching a dating show and not actually on one? Comfort eat your way to happiness and tuck into Julie and Julia. But if you do one thing today (lazy sod) then make sure you check out our review of Dating In The Dark.