reALIty Around the World: ‘Beauty and the Geek Australia’

Allison Lasher, Blogger

Remember “Beauty and the Geek,” the show that paired intelligence-lacking gorgeous women with socially awkward geniuses to compete for prize money and a chance at bettering themselves? Basically it was a cute show that jumped the shark when it put a male beauty and female geek into the equation.

While hunting around the Web for new procrastination sources, I stumbled upon Australia’s version of the show. The fourth season is currently airing and while the format is almost exactly the same, there are many aspects that have turned out remarkably different. First and foremost, everything is funnier in an Australian accent. But once that wore off, I was frustrated by the lack of similarities to the original show. Instead of the concrete lessons both beauties and geeks have to learn, the first few episodes of the show included challenges where the geeks had to learn about James Bond and the beauties had to feel their geeks. Yes, that’s right, the women had to blindly feel the geeks’ bodies and correctly identify their partner. The U.S. version made more sense. I understood what the women were doing and how it improved their minds, and what the men were learning and how it improved their social skills and confidence. The Aussie version seems more focused on the physical and social improvement of the geeks and lets the ladies take a backseat.

So, now we’ve established that if you’re looking to watch geeks and beauties endure challenges to become more like each other, turn to U.S. reruns of the show. However, the Australian version adds an element of romance mostly absent from the U.S. edition. Since the first episode, the editing seemed centered around beauties and geeks being interested in each other. More than one love connection has formed, and it’s both awkward and delightful to watch. The episode airing Thursday is a makeover episode, so things can only heat up from there. Check out Dane, made over on last week’s episode. Trust me, it’s about to get steamy in the “Beauty and the Geek” mansion.

— Allisan Lasher