Sunday, April 25, 2010

On Episode 3 Tonight of "What Chilli Wants" on VH-1: Chilli Is Stood Up For the First Time Ever!

(If you're not familiar with this show, try this primer:

Nutshell synopsis: Chilli -- in her quest to find the right man -- has a definite thing for boxer Floyd Mayweather, and as a result is not really interested in other prospects, but that mentality gets set on its ear by the end of this episode.

Segment 1: Christian "Chris" Harrington (who genuinely seemed to really fluster Chilli in Episode 1) is back! He comes over to her house for a second date, a lunch date. Chilli is herself cooking spaghetti (very cool) for the lunch. But little does Christian know that he's in for a real grillin' from Chilli's friend Missy Elliot. And indeed, Missy does lay into him, but he does a great job in response -- to quote Chilli, "he held his own." Although Chilli and Christian share a very nice, tight hug at the end of this date, Chilli afterwards indicates that she's not too enthusiastic: "He's cool as a friend. But he ain't gonna make it." Then she says that she just keeps thinking about Floyd and whether she and Floyd might be able to turn their longstanding "friends" relationship into something more.

Next, Chilli is shown preparing with TLC for their upcoming appearance at Justin Timberlake's charity show in Vegas. Interesting factoid: This is to be TLC's first concert appearance in the U.S. in 7 seven years (in the wake of the 2002 death of TLC core member Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes). After that, series co-star Tionna Smalls (the relationship specialist who is trying to help Chilli find her man) makes her first appearance, and she and Chilli talk about the plan for Chilli to meet up again with Floyd in Vegas when Chilli's there for the concert. Chilli reveals to Tionna, "I'm a little crazy about him. I'm looking at him a little different." Finally in Segment 1, Chilli -- before heading to Vegas -- gets a chance to spend some quality time with son Tron at the local go-cart joint. At lunch, Tron encourages her to "make me proud" at the Vegas show.

Segment 2: In the funniest segment of the episode, Tionna actually meets up with a Vegas oddsmaker to try to handicap the odds of Chilli (in light of Chilli's very stringent "Chilli Checklist" of attributes that any man of hers must have) actually meeting a man in the ATL with whom Chilli will fall in love. The handicapper goes through each of the myriad elements of the Chilli Checklist, each time slicing the ATL's population down even further. Finally, the handicapper concludes that there are about 300 men in the ATL with whom Chilli might fall in love, and even that would be contingent on them falling in love with her. Get this one: He ultimately concludes that the odds of Chilli falling in love with a man in the ATL are about 2.8 million to 1! The handicapper very astutely notes at that point that such odds are considered fairly "astronomical". Upon hearing this sobering news, Tionna (who obviously does not want to fail in her high-profile endeavor to find Chilli a true love) resolves to endeavor to encourage Chilli to focus on Floyd (since he's obviously become the love of Chilli's heart).

Segment 3: We are backstage in Vegas prior to the charity concert in which TLC will be performing. Chilli is understandably nervous, since TLC hasn't done a live appearance in the U.S. in a number of years. Some of Lisa Lopes' family members come backstage, and some very touching moments ensue between them and the living members of TLC. Then TLC hits the stage and gives a rousing performance. Chilli herself described the performance as not "missing a beat."

After the concert (it's not clear it was the same night or the next day -- but probably the latter), Chilli is shown on her way to meet up with Tionna for a dinner with Floyd. Chilli remarks, "I'm on my way to meet Floyd -- feel nervous -- feel vulnerable." Chilli shows up lookin' fine, and Tionna comments, "Look at you, hootchie mama!" But then Floyd fails to show up on time, and Chilli is visibly starting to get pissed as we are sent to the final commercial.

Final segment: Even after a commercial break, Chilli is still waiting on Floyd. Then Floyd calls and tells Chilli that he won't be able to make it. Although the reason he gave for his absence is not revealed on the show, Chilli feels stood up, proclaiming that "I ain't never been stood up before!" She admits that this was "heartbreaking," and is obviously saddened, but I have to say that she handles the situation with a ton of grace and does not break down. She also reveals the present that she was going to give Floyd at this dinner: A large framed photograph of the two of them together previously. Then there are indications that Chilli may be starting to realize what I have said since Episode 1 -- that Floyd just ain't interested in anything beyond friends: Chilli talks about this being a sign and about the handwriting being on the wall. Tionna agrees, commenting that "Floyd's too cool for school." GOOD! Maybe Chilli now can really seriously think about whether Christian Harrington might be a real prospect. I still think he is, based upon Chilli's initial reaction to him in Episode 1 (read my prior blog post, as linked at the top).

Short preview segment to upcoming episodes: Tionna confronts Chilli about being "picky and shallow" and comments that she (Tionna) is "starting to feel like this is a waste of time."

Final observation: I would be the first to admit that I'm not a huge reality show viewer. So many of these shows are inhabited by completely mindless, obnoxious, egomaniacal prima donnas (of both sexes) whom no one in his/her right mind would ever want to be around in real life. But part of what keeps me watching What Chilli Wants is the fact that the two stars (Chilli & Tionna) both strike me as very genuine and personable people. Sure Chilli has her very tough Chilli checklist, but frankly she would be the last gal that I would ever describe as a "Diva" -- she's just too nice; too likable. Same with Tionna.