Which, come to think of it, is basically the Spike formula in a nutshell.As for Bravo’s contribution, each episode of “Online Dating Rituals of the American Male” follows two guys as they go through various online dates, either looking for something serious or, as one says in the premiere, “I’m just a Texas boy trying to get laid.” The direct-to-camera interviews feature not just the two men, but also their dates, which can range from promising to train wreck.
Moreover, by jettisoning the participants after each hour, “Dating Rituals” doesn’t provide any sort of progression, but merely a series of snapshots — essentially, 50 first dates (if the show lives that long).
It’s too bad, since “Catfish” (first the documentary, then the MTV show) has exposed some of the intricacies and dangers of this world where romance is mediated through a Web connection.
Given the opportunity to offer its own insights — which is surely the peek-behind-the-curtain come-on to viewers — Bravo has retreated to its comfort zone, with a whole lot of vamping for the cameras and implied rim shots.
Then again, it’s oddly appropriate that these first episodes of “Rituals” would be guilty of what so many dating online already do — namely, pretending to be something they’re not.
Bravo unmasks the world of the booming, online dating culture from the male perspective on the new docu-series, “Online Dating Rituals of the American Male” on Sunday, March 9 at 10p.m.