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Some of the most squirm-worthy moments in dating awkwardness are often seen on reality shows. Not usually, but that sure doesn't mean we won't watch them try and try again!
It’s reflective of the target audience: millennials who have had the world’s information at their fingertips for most of their adult lives, and learned to take in conflicting information from different sources at once.
It’s telling that the shows most emblematic of this trend are not workplace comedies.
The characters bounce between jobs or have no jobs at all (aside from Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’s Rebecca Bunch, for whom work is the only thing she has figured out).
They freelance and move, as typified by the women of Broad City and their New York Nomad lifestyle.
While each of these shows is distinct in tone and humor, they share similar concerns: They star 20- or early-30-somethings in major cities and feature characters who are educated, have relative financial stability, the dubious luxury of being able to date around instead of settling down, the choice between passion and money, infinite time to wander the streets talking about life, and a more complicated relationship with sex.
Once upon a time, sex was an affair that happened only beneath L-shaped sheets and reflected the fears of what having, or not having, sex with someone meant or didn’t mean (Will & Grace, Friends, Frasier — pick a show from NBC’s 1999 Thursday night lineup, and there’s an episode built around this exact concern).
These tropes have been defined and redefined for new generations of viewers.
Characters striving to maintain the perfect nuclear family on Leave It to Beaver became characters looking to achieve a work-life balance on The Mary Tyler Moore Show, became characters inept at both work and life on 30 Rock.
On these dating shows, one person meets an interacts with numerous potential mates over a period of several weeks. Enjoy this list of the greatest reality TV dating shows ever, and don't forget to vote!
One by one, the hopeful suitors are eliminated, until only one remains. The most recent 'Bachelorette' hot couple, Emily Maynard and Jeff Holm, just broke off their much-publicized engagement. And, if you're a reality TV addict, consider voting on these lists of the best reality competition shows, reality dramas, cooking competition TV shows and medical shows.
Also, if you know of a reality dating show that's missing, add it to the list!