Sign up for a dating show
“I lived the first 20-something years of my life as a completely different person, and now I’m in a new frame of mind, I’m in a new body, I’ve got a brand new ,000 chest!
” Kai says in the confessional booth, opening his shirt to reveal top-surgery scars.
Disappointingly, James and Andra’s selection process also included regurgitating harmful intra-community stereotypes about bisexual people.
In each of the show’s first seven seasons, 20 singles (and sometimes an additional wild card or two) were put through a “rigorous matchmaking process” and chosen to live together in a massive house.In one early scene, for example, the show’s lone trans cast member, Kai, asks Jenna, the woman he’s been connecting with since the first day, if she’d be willing to join him while he takes his routine testosterone shots.Rather than feel voyeuristic or inappropriate, the moment is tender and, for many viewers, familiar.Many of these shows weren’t explicitly dating-focused ( and applied an ethically dubious twist: The gay leading man, James, and his heterosexual best friend, Andra, initially had no idea that the mix of suitors competing for James’s heart on national television included both gay and straight men.When it was revealed to them, midway through production, their objective shifted from a putatively romantic pursuit to guessing which men had been tricking James all along.presented this as an intriguing plot development, but the show replicated the kind of dangerous guesswork queer people must undertake each day—for gay men like James, incorrectly identifying another man as gay could lead to consequences far more dire than losing a game show.