Reality Steve

Reader Emails

“Reader Emails,” “Women Tell All” Taping, Shanae (Again), & “Temptation Island” Season 4

Photo Credit: ABC

It’s asked in today’s “Reader Emails,” and ABC hasn’t announced their schedule yet for the rest of the season, but there has to be a week where they double up. The finale is the week of March 14th, and we don’t know if it’ll be a one or two night finale yet. But we’ve only got 3 Mondays of episodes before then, yet we still have to do Austria, Hometowns, Overnights, and the Women Tell All. So I gotta imagine there will be a Monday/Tuesday week, or Sunday/Monday. Or hell, we’ve actually seen them combine the Tell All with an episode recently, so they could do that. Nothings been announced but certainly they need to double up somewhere. The “Women Tell All” tapes next Wed the 23rd in LA, so expect to start seeing some of the women posting airport pictures probably this weekend. I gotta believe Shanae will be there, and will 100% be kept away from all the women pre-filming, and we won’t actually see her on stage until they bring her out for her hot seat appearance. That seems to be their new thing they do with the “villain” in recent seasons, so I expect nothing different when it comes to Shanae. It doesn’t make sense to have her getting ready and hob knobbing with all the other women backstage pre-show. She doesn’t like them and they don’t like her. But confirmation on your WTA is next Wednesday the 23rd.

I’d been asked about it over and over recently and while I didn’t have an exact answer, I knew it had to be soon, and that was “When is Temptation Island” coming back? We got our answer yesterday. Last year it started airing in February. This year I guess they wanted to wait until “Bachelor” season was completely over since it starts on March 16th, which is the week of the “Bachelor” finale (and coincidentally the day I head to Vegas for March Madness. Back to no masks!). Here’s your preview, and as always, it looks quite juicy:

One thing that many of you pointed out to me yesterday in regards to Shanae’s IG post that I completely overlooked.

While yes, she took no accountability for her actions and blamed everyone else for how she’s perceived, many of you mentioned to me also how she completely contradicted herself in that statement. In one sentence, she’s telling us “you didn’t see the real me,” then a paragraph later she says “my realness isn’t for everyone.” That makes no sense. You can’t pat yourself on the back for how real you were, but then say “that wasn’t me.” Even she can’t get her own stories straight on her own behavior. She refuses to take responsibility for anything she did or said on that show after she’s had ample time to watch it back and hear the criticism. She doesn’t give a shit, so neither should we. No death threats, and no name calling please, but she absolutely deserves a whole heaping of criticism for how she acted on the show. Her sob story is full of shit. Enough already.

“Reader Emails” begins now…

Hi Steve–

Thanks for widening my reality dating show horizons! I finally watched Fboy Island, and am now watching Joe Millionaire, because of your coverage. I have really enjoyed the interviews you’ve done with cast from both of those shows. The one with Jenny Alexander in particular was excellent. I haven’t read the court transcript yet, but did read the press release and listened. Like you, I mistakenly thought all sex trafficking involved kidnapping and hiding people, so it was a real eye opener, and I now understand how it can be so widespread.

I think the Bachelor producers need to watch Fboy Island and Joe Millionaire–they could learn a lot from them! Pretty much the only reason I watch the Bachelor anymore is to see how the spoilers come to fruition. But the same ol’ same ol’ tired, overproduced, repetitive stuff has kind of turned me off of the show, honestly. Wouldn’t it be great if the producers or Jesse Palmer pulled a “Martin” and told the lead about some of the shenanigans going on? And I loved having a comedian host Fboy Island. I like the fact that FBoy knows exactly what it is. They’re not trying to take themselves so seriously, whereas the Bachelor/ette makes that mistake every season.

One thing I have noticed on some of these other shows, Joe Millionaire in particular, is how some of these otherwise beautiful young women have, in my opinion, ruined their looks by having too much work done. So many of them have overdone the lip stuff so much that they look like cartoon characters. I can see why an older woman whose lips are starting to thin might want to do fillers (or whatever it is they do), but I find it hard to believe that the guys they are pursuing find the “I just got punched in the mouth” look sexy. Do the shows encourage them to do that? Is it really that prevalent in the real world?

Thanks for all you do.

Comment: Yes, it is. To each their own, but I don’t think they look as bad as you think they do.

Hi Steve,

For your reader emails this week.

Thank you for the spoilers, weekly recaps and podcasts. I enjoy all your content and have for years, including your “lives” with Ashley Spivey and have been a long time fan since Jillian’s season (yes, I’m old lol). Before I get started on my thoughts on Clayton’s season, thank you for advertising Joe Millionaire. I didn’t think my brain had capacity for one more “brain candy” show at a time, but I’m really enjoying it. The two leads, one millionaire, one not, the cheesy, but kind Butler/host and the contestants are all enjoyable to watch and the vibe is much more casual. What makes it most enjoyable is that although you know it’s “produced” the contestants/women seem to largely get along, there’s some drama, but not over-the-top villainary, and the leads seem like decent enough dudes. I’m curious to see who they each pick, assuming they both end up with someone and whether either proposes (I’m guessing not, which is also refreshing). I think it adds to the fact, and you’ll hear me discuss this on the pod tomorrow, is that we don’t even know the expected outcome is on Joe Millionaire. We know what ultimately the Bachelor/ette wants every season, and they basically get it. Joe Millionaire? I have no idea what the ultimate goal is on that show. To date? To marry? To leave the guy at the altar once they find out he’s not the millionaire? At least there’s some suspense.

Onto the Bachelor. Like most seasons, (except Michelle’s – I really enjoyed hers) I’m finding this season same old, tired, predictable formula where I watch the first episode to get the lay of the land and see the season preview, then primarily watch the 1-1 dates and zip past the drama for episodes 2-7, and start watching more closely once hometowns are upon us.

Generally, Clayton seems like a decent guy with reasonable intentions, but is definitely getting caught up with being the Bachelor, what with falling in “love” (read: lust) with multiple women and of course, being production’s parrot with the whole Shanae situation. I’m truly curious if he’ll ever address the whole “If I’d known” thing at the WTA, as it’s evident he did know, but was probably just following production’s instructions to keep Shanae. We’ll never hear that from him though. It’ll definitely be addressed, but him being honest and saying I was urged or nudged by production regarding Shanae? No. He’ll say what he said in his apology, which was that he didn’t know, but even that was called into question by Sierra and Lyndsey on social media. So it’ll be interesting to see how he answers that.

Do you have any news on when the WTA will be filmed and whether there will be any special guests or announcements? Next Wednesday.

I’m curious how this season plays out as there seems to be some legit drama looming on the overnight dates and/or Iceland finale episodes.

ps: Please provide an update on Luka or post some pics. She seems like a lovely doggo.

Comment: Luka is doing great. She actually has her teeth cleaning and comprehensive exam today. Teeth cleaning is once a year, her comp exam is every February and August.

Hi Reality Steve,

I really don’t know much about how these shows operate but would Clayton or past contestants be in breach of contract if they did not keep some contestants? What would happen if, for example, Clayton said screw you to the producers and had sent Shenae home? I imagine they are required to keep some of these people around as we saw Michelle keep a few people she flat out did not want (like Chris). I know it’s easy for us sitting at home to say that, but considering we see something like this happen every season, clearly it isn’t. You signed on to be their lead, they shooting a whole TV show around you and trying to find you love, so yeah, naturally you will gravitate towards production and not want to piss them off. It’s not just Clayton. It’s every past lead. Some have even said it in interviews. You don’t want to let anyone down so you feel torn about basically talking back to them and demanding anything on your end because they are the ones that gave you this opportunity.

Do these contestants know the leads don’t really want them? I mean they must have some level of self awareness. Could Clayton’s behavior and bizarre choices be because he’s terrified he will be in breach of something, or is he seriously that blind to Shenae and production’s Machiavellian behavior.


Comment: I think some do and some don’t. Some just don’t have the greatest self awareness.

Hi Steve –

Long time follower here. I’ve watched since season one and love the OG Bachelor crowd. Was a better show back then before social media became the driver.

But I digress (and am showing my age). I really enjoyed Jen Scheft’s Bachelor to the Burbs podcast and seemed like she was getting active on her IG and then poof. It all stopped. Any idea or insight?


Comment: She told me basically it was too much work for too little payoff, and with two kids, it got to be a bit much for her.

Thanks for helping me get into Joe Millionaire. I was wondering – it seems like the contestants skew older and more racially diverse than the bachelor. Any idea on how come? Because up until recently the Bachelor didn’t give a shit about racial diversity?

It seems an especially interesting casting choice to skew older and more diverse given something i saw on Reddit that the two leads seem to be conservative and are following right wing “influencers” on Instagram i think it was. I have no idea. I haven’t looked.

Is it my TV, or does it seem like the lighting and sets are not as good on Joe Millionaire as the Bachelor? Never noticed.

About the bachelor – I’m Latina and always wish we got more info about the contestants of color racial and cultural background. I think we got some of this with F4 on Michelle’s season, but on Clayton’s season it’s back to a weird race blindness that seems to erase big parts of the contestants of colors lives. I guess I’m interested in your thoughts on why this happens, beyond of course, white supremacy.

Thanks again!

Comment: I honestly don’t really think there’s an answer other than this is a white show, made predominantly by white people, that has had essentially 43 white leads in 46 seasons. If people can’t see by now they only gave a shit about race and trying to go more diverse in the last 2 years once they got called out for it, well, then now they should.

I don’t recall a villain so bold with admissions in her ITMs in recent seasons. Is it the least bit possible Shanea is an actress planted by producers and this is all just a paid plotline? She’s not an actress and she did not get paid to come on the show.

What word do you start with on Wordle? Inquiring minds want to know.

Have a good one.

Comment: I start with a different word every time for the most part. However, I always have my first word contain two vowels. I usually choose “a” & “e” together, or a word that has “o” and “i.” And based on that will determine my next guess. If there’s no “a” & “e” in the word, then I know my second guess will most definitely have an “o” and/or “I” in it. And then I just work from there. If it has both an “a” and “e” in it, chances are it doesn’t have any other vowels, so then I just start working consonants. I’m 30 for 30 now, so I must be doing something right. And I’d be shocked if I never get one.

Honestly I think the only way I’ll miss one is if it’s an “easy” word, like something that ends in “ight,” you know? Because at that point, say I determine by guess 3 that it ends in “ight,” well, it could still be “fight,” “light,” “night,” “right,” “sight,” or “tight.” What if I just guess the wrong one in my final 3 guesses? Certainly possible. Hasn’t happened yet but on something like that where you can make 4 or 5 words by just changing one letter, that’s where it could get you. In my 30 game streak, I’ve never got it in one guess, I’ve got it in 2 guesses once, and it’s never taken me 6 guesses. So almost all are 3, 4, or 5.

Hi Steve,

Long time reader, first time writing in! Wanted to get a jumpstart on submitting reader emails for next week.

You’ve mentioned that if Shanae were to end up on BIP it’d be way too producer created but do you think there’s a chance at a redemption edit for her to go to BIP? Based on her social media reaction, I don’t think she cares how she comes across and she absolutely would do BIP. And I don’t know if she’d even want a redemption edit, because clearly based on her IG post yesterday, she feels she did nothing wrong and we’re the ones who don’t know what we’re talking about.

I thought of Krystal on Arie’s season and how she was given a chance to redeem herself on BIP. Even admitting that how she spoke on Arie’s season wasn’t her true way of speaking which we got to hear on BIP. I don’t recall a ton from her “villainous” ways except the hot mic catching her calling Arie a needle d***.

But is it possible Shanae is just so ruthless with how she’s coming across that there may be no BIP in her future?

Thanks for all you do!

Comment: Lets see how she acts or what she says on the WTA, but my guess right now is she’d do it because she’s loving the attention.

Hi Steve,

In the last batch of emails, someone was asking if you thought it’d be possible that Kurt from Joe Millionaire was extremely wealthy and it was a surprise for everyone. Kurt and Steven actually went on Jason Tartick’s podcast and they spoke about Kurt’s finances. Spoiler – he’s not a multi-millionaire, but he’s also not poor (for lack of a better word). It’s a good listen.

Comment: Didn’t hear but thanks for that. I never got the impression he was poor. I just knew he didn’t have $10 million like Steven but I thought he did well for himself.

Thank you for getting me hooked on Joe Millionaire! It turns out, I’ve been at dance auditions with Doris. I don’t know her personally, but remember her performance! Very talented!

Who are your final guesses? I think Steven ends up with Annie and Kurt ends up with Amanda. I don’t see him picking Carolyn in the end and I think we are going to have a Greg level reaction in the breakup from her.

I’m looking forward to more Joe Millionaire cast members on your podcast!

Comment: I don’t think you’re far off there. Just from the edit, it certainly looks like Kurt’s final 2 will be Amanda and Carolyn. As for Steven, it seems like we’ve really only seen him connect with Annie. I don’t even know who his second girl would be. Can’t see him with anyone else.

Hi Steve,

Two things:

1) I was shocked so many people picked the Bengals to win the Super Bowl because their offensive line struggled mightily for much of the season and you can’t win a Super Bowl without strong offensive line play. I’m just happy the better team won the way they did, which was quite inspiring. Oh yeah, and Hannah Ann is dating Jake Funk (who was inactive for the game, which I understood because it was the first time Cam Akers, Darrell Henderson, and Sony Michel were all healthy all season). The Bengals were leading the whole second half until 1:30 to play, so, it’s not like they were overmatched the whole game.

And yes, Hannah dating Jake has been known for a while. I alluded to it a few times in the column and on the podcast without saying Jakes name like a month ago. It was when I was talking about the whole gossip thing, and what “couples” I’d actually ever out, and what the parameters were, etc. It’s all there from last month. Actually checking my DM’s, Jan. 4th was when I was first told about her and Jake. So clearly they were seeing each other before then. But yes, publicly it wasn’t “confirmed” until this past weekend. Many people knew though by just following their IG. They’ve been posting in the same location for a while now.

2) I want to know what the schedule for the rest of the season looks like. I know they skipped a week because of the playoff MNF game. So I’d like to know when they’re taping WTA and when the finale is (and will it be live)? The show’s finale will be the week of March 14th, but ABC hasn’t said yet whether it’ll be a one night or two night finale. But judging by what we know is left, they still have Austria, Hometowns, Overnights, WTA, and finale, but we only have Feb. 21st, 28th, March 7th, and March 14th for episodes, so they’ll need to double up at some point. I’m guessing we’ll hear something soon.

3) I think there are some fantastic candidates to be the next Bachelorette, because there are so many terrific women this year. But I think Susie got a Bachelorette edit last night with that clock tower impromptu date. But I think Gabby, Serene, and Genevieve (Genevieve is my personal favorite) would make outstanding Bachelorette leads too. I’d personally would sign up for two Bachelorette seasons again because they’re all so good. So who are their front runners? And I think the rest of the Top 11 should be in Paradise this summer, like Sarah, Hunter, and Marlena.

Comment: Genevieve has zero chance at “Bachelorette.” It’s most likely gonna be between your final 3 of Susie, Gabby, and Rachel. Whichever one he’s not with it’ll be between the two, and the other will be one of the first down in Paradise.



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