Are You Tempted?, Episode 6: Dream Dates or Nightmares?by David Bloomberg -- 07/10/2002
After having a nice, peaceful week without Temptation Island, I almost forgot how much I really dislike these people – especially Mandy. But it didn't take long for that spark to rekindle as I sat down to watch again.
We started where we left off two weeks ago – waiting for the girls to pick their "dream date." While they were supposed to pick from the guys they've already dated, Mandy – never one to eat a full meal after she'd already tasted the food – decided she didn't want to go out with one she'd already had a date with, but one that had been on the "triple date" with all three girls. The other two didn't object (which is hardly surprising, since she has pretty well rolled over them in every group decision).
So, it was time to pick. Shannon went first, having a choice between Charlie, Tom, Matt, and Dano. Unsurprisingly, she went right for Tom, saying, "I had to pick him." She added that they had a connection and he is not the type of person she would have expected to be on a show like this. Hmmm. What does that say about her being on a show like this?
Valerie had a choice of Jon, Matt, Evan, and Dano – plus Charlie from the triple-date. She had originally planned to go with Jon, but decided to switch to Dano because he is so upbeat that he might be able to take her mind off of what could happen at the end of the show.
Mandy had a choice, including the triple-date, of Jon, Johnny, Matt, and maybe another guy who obviously wasn't all that important. She went with Jon (sorry, Johnny, no more nipple-licking for you). She said it was a difficult decision, but liked him for his shyness, said his quiet intelligence intrigued her, and added that he put knots in her stomach. I'm sure there's something I could add here, but I'm tired of insulting Mandy for the moment. I'm sure I'll have other opportunities later.
From these choices, we zoomed across the island to a couple we haven't heard from in a while – and wished that we wouldn't hear from again: Taheed and Ytossie. They were on a beach about five miles away from the other groups. And, because the show was produced by such kind and caring people, they were given the opportunity to work out their problems alone. Well, alone except for a camera crew recording every minute of it, of course. Heaven forbid these two should actually be away from the cameras.
We got to see the two of them talking about who they kissed and whether tongue action was involved (they both seemed particularly preoccupied with the tongue issue). Both took turns blaming the other, though it was really hard to take Taheed seriously with the way he tried to turn everything on Ytossie and act like an innocent. Remember, this is the guy who succumbed to temptation before ever setting foot on the island!
It wasn't until they talked with their divemaster and his fiancÚ that they really started to talk to each other and appreciate what they had. So, all you readers, remember – don't bother to spend your money on a therapist if you have marital problems. Just go to your local divemaster for all your counseling needs.
When each of them were brought before host Mark Walberg to decide the fate of their relationship, both told him (in individual questioning) that they had not found the answers they needed on Temptation Island. What a shock! I'm sure Fox will be distraught to find out that their show did not fully serve its purpose as marriage counseling. But maybe the ratings will console them somehow.
Anyway, Walberg asked Ytossie what makes her love Taheed. She didn't really give a good answer. When he followed up by asking what she thinks Taheed's expectations of their relationship is, she responded, "I have no idea." Well, I'm glad they had that special opportunity to be alone and talk.
When Walberg asked Taheed about what makes him love Ytossie, he answered that she has always been there for him. Hmm. Maybe he should consider being there for her, too – instead of being in some other woman's bed! Just a thought.
Bringing them together, Walberg encouraged them to speak their minds and their hearts (translation: really give it to each other so our ratings will increase). Taheed looked at her and said they have been together for five years, and done something miraculous together in having their son (you know, the one they neglected to tell Fox about). He said he knows they've had problems, but he wants to spend the rest of his life with her, and they will get some marriage counseling to help.
She responds that she's always loved him, and that, with counseling, she wouldn't mind spending the rest of her life with him. What a ringing endorsement!
Walberg, trying to wring some amount of credit for the show out of this whole thing, asked if their stay on Temptation Island has helped. Taheed threw him a bone and said that, to an extent it has, because they've been able to be alone with each other (which, I might note, was not at all the point of the show!).
Then Walberg left the room, so they could "be alone" – except for the cameras, of course. They talked briefly, saying they thought they were expected to bash the show, but it was worth it to come. Fine. Don't bash the show. I will.
Finally, we're done with those two. With any luck, we'll never see them again. Meanwhile, on the other side of the island, the singles who were not picked for dream dates are saying goodbye. A couple of the brainless wonders gave their commentary and opinions, but it's not even worth summarizing what they said. Megan – who had been in a tug of war between Andy and Kaya until both gave her up for somebody else – was still upset and wanted Kaya to know that she really had feelings for him. OK, thanks. You're outta here. Buh-bye.
So it's off to the dream dates – a "new level of temptation," as Walberg said. There were three destinations to choose from for each group. Kaya went first and chooses rappelling and a candle-lit night in a tent in the rain forest at Ian Anderson's Cave. Andy is visibly annoyed at this, since he had talked to Kaya about that choice and really wanted it. He later described himself as "furious."
Billy chose second and picked Jaguar Paw, a resort where they would tube through a cave. Andy was left with Maruba Spa, for a night of pampering that he really did not want.
For the girls, Mandy got to pick first and chose Chan Chich Lodge, a rustic setting. Shannon took Cayo Espanto, a private island. Valerie got Francis Ford Coppola's lodge, Blancaneaux Lodge.
Both the guys and the girls were told that separate accommodations would be available for the night, but Fox would prefer they not use them. OK, so he didn't really say the last part, but I know that's what he was thinking.
In talking to the cameras about their upcoming dates, Valerie said she had no idea what to expect and was feeling blah – all she could think about was Kaya and what would happen the following day when they were brought back together. Shannon was thinking that Tom should probably go for it with her (hmmm) and Mandy gave us her thesis on temptation: Temptation is when something is put in front of you that you are normally not allowed to have. Normally, she couldn't have Jon, but now she can. Yes, she can. Billy won't be too thrilled, but she didn't seem terribly concerned about that. In fact, when she went to pack for the date, she automatically began to take a photo of her and Billy, but then realized that she "just didn't need it at all." Hopefully, that's how Billy will feel about her by the time this is over.
Speaking of Billy, he was apparently trying to be in a similar mindset to Mandy, saying it wasn't fair to himself or his date to be thinking about his girlfriend right now. True, but it might be fair to, oh I dunno, your girlfriend. Well, if it wasn't Mandy, that is. Anyway, he went on to talk about how Vanessa somehow knows just what he's feeling, and how this is the toughest thing he's ever done in his life.
But Valerie is the one who really had a tough go of it. She and Dano arrived at the San Pedro airport en route to their date, and saw the single girls waiting to leave. Since she saw who was there, she could figure out who wasn't, and started sobbing that she now had a visual in her head of who Kaya would be spending the next two days with. At this point Dano probably clued in that he wasn't getting any on this date.
We got to see various clips from each date in an almost dizzying fashion.
Kaya obviously wasn't as worried about Valerie. In fact, he talked about how he came to be free and open and find his "market value." Alison noted that he was still very cautious, but hoped that would change as the date went on.
Andy, still annoyed at being on the spa date getting a full body massage instead of rappelling, talked about how Shannon had been worried about him spending all night cuddling with some girl – which would be too intense. He seemed to agree.
But Shannon may have been having second thoughts, since she said she felt "totally connected" to Tom, and that he was the perfect person for her. Tom agreed that he could easily fall for her.
Mandy talked about how she was liking Jon more and more – he even helped her unbraid her hair. Her less-than-significant other, Billy, was also enjoying his date as they floated along in their tubes through the dark cave.
Kaya was enjoying the physical challenge of rappelling and the emotional challenge of his date. Alison, he said, is the "full and complete package."
Valerie, still feeling glum and worried about the next day, knew she would want to go to bed early (by herself). She didn't seem to do a whole lot on her date.
Andy complained that there were two different Elizabeths – one for the camera and one he'd gotten to know. Because she was concerned about the way she'd be portrayed on the show, "camera Elizabeth" showed up for most of the date, and that wasn't who he wanted to be with. For her part, Elizabeth said she was used to being treated like a lady, and that wasn't happening here. Andy said he had tried to make her feel comfortable and she had not reciprocated. Jeez, are these two married already or what?
Shannon had been looking forward to being alone with somebody to whom she'd connected so well. Tom also felt the connection, saying he'd gotten to know her better in just the past three or four days than he had known any other woman in his life. She said he was "really, really wonderful" and "even more than I expected." Watch out, Andy.
Valerie, still focusing on the next day, talked to Dano about it, asking if she should forgive Kaya if he did something on the island. Dano, ever the peace-maker, said she shouldn't. Nice try, pal, but you're not gonna get lucky tonight by that route. Especially since Valerie kept thinking of Kaya all night. She did add, "I know he didn't have sex with anybody. That's a given." You could almost hear the Fox management sighing, "Alas…" Their date ended when she "turned into a pumpkin" at 9:00. As Dano said, she loves her man.
Kaya was obviously not having the same thoughts. He enjoyed being alone in the cave with Alison, and then arriving at their candle-lit tent. As he said, she was definitely his type and his temptation.
Mandy was also with temptation (of course, from what we've seen, where temptation leads, Mandy follows), and found her date with Jon to be romantic, tender, and beautiful. She said she was sinking into a comfort level with him that she never thought she could achieve except with Billy. They started to give each other a goodnight kiss, which went into overtime.
We to see Billy talking about one part of his mind saying he should "go, go, go" and another part saying he can't do it. But there they were, Billy and Vanessa, lying in bed with him shirtless as the scene fades.
It became apparent that Mandy and Jon hadn't said goodnight, as they were swinging together in a hammock (fully clothed, in case you're getting any ideas) while she rubbed his leg and they whispered sweet nothings to each other, like: "It's funny ‘cause I want to be so affectionate with you, but I know we're both tryin' to be good behaved." (sic) She added, "I'm enjoying an amazing moment." As the show closed, she wondered aloud if she was going to Hell.
No. The viewers are the ones in Hell, Mandy, because we have to watch your immature antics. And we still have one more episode to go, when the couples will come back to talk about what happened. From the previews, it looks like the tears will flow freely.
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