Two years after “Miami Social” — another contrived docu-soap about the young, fabulous and unabashedly narcissistic — Bravo embarks on a similar conceit with “Most Eligible Dallas,” focusing on a group of club-hopping socialites whose adventures, down to the slick opening credits, have a decidedly storyboarded feel to them. The press release claims this bunch will prove “that everything’s bigger in Texas — including the drama.” The hair, maybe. The drama, IQs and entertainment value, not so much.
At the center of the action is Matt Nordgren, a former college quarterback who states without a hint of a smile near the outset, “I’ve been groomed to be a great man.” His best friend, Courtney Kerr, in her own direct-to-camera confessional avers, “I’m not into jerks, I’m not into a–holes,” which not only rules out Matt, but pretty much everyone else in the show.
Not that Courtney doesn’t get irritated when Matt orchestrates a night out and other girls hang on his oiled arms, protesting too much that she’s not jealous. Unfortunately, there’s no other way to perceive her response to Neill Skylar, the blonde singer/single mom who has just returned to Dallas.
And so it goes — a soap opera where the acting is worse than most soap operas, and the “characters” keep constantly saying how perfect, fabulous and eligible they are. Among the other members of “Most Eligible Dallas” (or Club “MED” for short) are an NFL punter named Glenn Pakulak, who takes up modeling on the side; and a luxury car dealer, Drew Ginsburg, who is both the token gay guy and (this being Texas) brags about how macho he is.
Clearly, Bravo is going after a “Dallas” vibe (as in the old Larry Hagman version), and the seven credited “story producers” suggests a writing staff nearly equal to that on a scripted drama. But the cast proves profoundly boring — and aside from the sculpted abs, not really as hot as the show paints them.
Presumably, Matt’s relationships, and their impact on Courtney, will provide a baseline to the other hook-ups and conquests to come, but the whole exercise feels so staged and massaged it’s hard to imagine anyone but the most gullible harboring even a modest rooting interest.
Then again, Bravo has certainly done well enough recycling the same concepts, as if in conceptual tribute to its “green” initiatives. That said, amid a crowded field of the young and toned looking for love, those who dare enter “MED” will encounter a pretty toxic environment.