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Tuesday, February 04, 2003


Requiem for a Customer Service Rep

I come here to bury Melissa M,. not to praise her.

OK, maybe I come here to praise her a little.

Melissa M., the frazzle-haired, 24-year-old customer service vixen of Joe Millionaire, was voted off by hunk/world's worst-remunerated construction worker/world's worst liar Evan Marriott. In tonight's episode, Evan instead opted for the continuing company of Sara, fetish model and sales associate, and Zora, the improbably-named substitute teacher and also sometime model.

Oh, Melissa M., we hardly knew ye. Or perhaps we started to get to know you too well. We know that you can't cook a lick, stumped by any culinary feat with a degree of difficulty north of the chopped salad. We know that you confuse the word "mercenary" with "missionary," a primetime Freudian slip as memorable as any since, well, since Evan asked Zora "Did you get that breast in Paris?" while presumably trying to compliment her stunning evening gown with the precipitous-like-the-cliffs-of-Dover neckline.

Ah, Melissa M. You sensed the end, didn't you? We'd like to think so, as you noted that the vibe between you and Evan was becoming more and more filial as the time wore on, as your concerns about romance slipping away were cleverly intercut with Evan sharing a story of tragic foot fungus and the emergency efficacy of Super Glue in the treatment of lacerations. These conversations do not a happy ending make. But you gamely gave it the proverbial college try (did we go to college?), slicing off a little piece of leg for the gam-obsessed lunkhead to drool over here, dropping a little cleavage into his dim sightline there. (Whoa, where did those come from? Oh yes, there was a sneak preview in last week's hot tub.) And, finally, in your desire to empty the chamber of your competitive six-shooter, you offered to inspect the hotel suite's Posturepedic to make sure all the "Do not remove these under penalty of law" tags were intact, no doubt in fear of what the French jailhouse philosophers would do to our heroically unreflective hero.

We can say this for Melissa M.: she knew what she wanted and she went for it full-steam ahead even as the red convertible of Fifteen Minutes of Fame tumbled into the chasm of reality-TV oblivion. She sleeps with the Gervases now.

[Someone around here referred to the female contestants on the show as "greedy sluts who are getting what's coming to them." But over the course of the last month, haven't the ladies been humanized for us with their hopes, their dreams, their (crocodile) tears? Are the dollar signs in their eyes not exceeded by the capaciousness of their hearts? Haven't we all started to pull for them a little, if not to win the Pyrrhic prize then to at least shuffle off with some dignity intact?]

[Of course, none of this applies to MoJo. She's creepy.]

About this site

This is the internet home of Mark Lisanti, a Los Angeles writer sometimes known as Bunsen. He is the founding editor of Defamer, a weblog about Hollywood, where he now serves in the nebulous capacity of "editor-at-large."
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