Lifestyle & Parenting

Now you can Watch Vancouverites Blind Date on TV

August 31, 2015

first date canadaSuch rampant hullabaloo is made of ‘dating in Vancouver’ that TV producers have finally cottoned on to the entertainment value inherent to the collective catastrophe that is dudes+ladies trying to be normal together in this city. Yep, we’re finally getting a reality TV series dedicated to romance in Vancouver! It’s called First Dates Canada (airing on Slice) and the first thing you need to know is it’s entirely shot in Earls Yaletown. So they’re those kind of first dates.

The premise is that for one night, literally every table at Earls seats a couple on a blind date, and presumably for camera-purposes, nobody gets any ambient low-lighting. "Welcome to the first date restaurant!" the voiceover at the show’s opener booms, "Everyone in it is single and waiting." Ok, loins girded! We watched the first episode of First Dates Canada, just so we could share a teaser illuminating how it feels to blind date the true Vancouverite way: i.e. stay home eating popcorn watching Vancouverites blind date at Earls Yaletown. We should have started this years ago.

first dates canada sliceWe begin! Denai is the first lady we meet. She works in radio, is tall and pretty and kind of seems like she could be a cousin of the Kardashians. "If I’m going to be with someone, I want to adore them to death!" she squeals in a talking-head precursor. Her date is Ed, guy who has "never had a girlfriend before" but would "love to settle down and have kids." Horse before cart, Ed. Ed has a cute accent, is really buff, and wearing a periwinkle shirt that works for him. Denai and Ed hit it off because they’ve both been on a cleanse that week (Vancouver!). Throughout the duration of their date, we’re treated to snippets of D & E’s flirtations, like when Ed shows Denai his rocket-ship boxers, and they compare pictures of their childhood fat phases.

We also get to eavesdrop on several others as they attempt to forge human bonds, like 37-year-old yoga instructor Raphael (Vancouuver!!). Raphael’s had several moments in his life where he’s "met someone and it was cosmic," but presumably he bunged those moments up and that’s why he’s here. Tina, his date, is a smart and gorgeous and asks for a glass of something red and oak-y straight off the bat, which seems to offend Raph ("Are you a drinker?" he asks. It’s wine at Earls, Raph, at least she’s not doing shots like one of the other couples…). After each date, the dubious lovebirds get a chance to "review" their experience, but not via text to their best friends, to each other’s faces on camera. During this invariably awkward moment, Tina points out that Raph recoiled when she admitted she wasn’t sure she wanted kids yet. Raph, clearly disgruntled upon hearing he shouldn’t expect to put a baby inside a woman he just split appies with, has little to say about his perception of how their date went beyond "durr I dunno, she’s hot". The question isn’t "is she hot," Raph. The question is why are you still here.

Our final take is that First Date Canada is ridiculous, as adherent to the rules of reality TV, but is also kind of amazing, especially for Vancouverites who just want to revel in the glorious, sometimes hilarious awkwardness of our dating scene without, you know, leaving the couch. For some serious laughs and cringes, tune in September 1st at 10 p.m. for the premiere! —Adrienne Matei


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