Antonio Sabato Jr. Is No Bret Michaels

He may be hunky but he just doesn't have the appeal

By Angel Cohn
|  Tuesday, Aug 18, 2009  |  Updated 11:45 AM PDT
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This guy is no Bret Michaels...

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So it's not a big secret that my biggest guilty pleasure is Rock of Love. It's not just the insanely over the top drunken antics and the smokin girls that make this show so addictive, but it is also Bret himself.

There's something oddly intriguing about the way he makes every girl, no matter if she's just puked her brains out or has spent the evening curled up with speed bump, feel like she's special. He's sort of a sweetheart underneath the fake hair, the gross bandanna and the rocker image.

I was hoping that Antonio Sabato Jr.'s new show My Antonio would be similar to Rock of Love and fill that disease ridden void in my TV diet, but alas, it doesn't measure up. I worked up this little side-by-side comparison to prove my point.

The Girls
The girls on this show are your typical Bachelor wannabes. Slightly agitated, more than a little bit desperate, but not what you'd really call detriments to society. They are more crazy stalkers than trashy groupies. In the first episode, the girls were drinking wine. Wine! Not a shot to be found in the place. What kind of boring dating show is this?

Physicality
Antonio's got rock hard abs and a pretty killer body, but he knows it. He dove off a yacht and swam to shore. Bret just wins the girls over with his skinny self, bleached extensions and sings them a song. There's more to a man than muscles. Also, Antonio expects his girl to be physically fit too. Makes them run up a mountain on their first day. That's way too much freaking work and then all we had to hear was complaining in the interviews about how hard it was and they were doing it for love. Gag. The most athletic thing that Bret has the girls do is play football in the mud or play hockey, but he doesn't really care about their athletic prowess so much as their muddy bikinis and how they handle themselves when they fall.

Location
Can reality dating shows stop using the cliched Hawaii for everything? It is gorgeous and beautiful, but it's not real. Last season of Rock of Love was the best, because it was on a bus and took them to random places.

Peculiar Tastes In Women
So far we've found out that Antonio doesn't like outspoken women, he has issues with women that have less than perfect hands and feet (he even gave the girls a mani/pedi kit to improve their digits). Bret loves women of all kinds. The bigger the boobs the better. But hands and feet, those don't play a role in his choices -- Bret knows that there is beauty within each and every girl.

Exes
Antonio's ex wife decides that she wants to win him back, all of a sudden... after like 15 years or so and primarily because she seemingly wants to glom on to his again popular self. He describes his marriage as a dark time, but judging by the commercials, it looks like he lets her stick around. If he just gets back together with his ex, that pretty much defeats the purpose of having this show in the first place. At least Bret gets his ex-girlfriends to help weed out the newbies with boyfriends or mental issues.

The Sex Factor
Antonio ditched a girl because she told him that she believed in open relationships. Meaning that he could date her and still get his jollies elsewhere if that made him happy. Now Bret would have been all over this. In fact, he's probably dreaming of a girl like this. He'd make some funny sproingy noise and invite her to bring a girlfriend over to party.

Family Matters
Antonio gets advice from his mother. Often. In fact, she's a part of the show and tells him which girls to keep around. Who does she think she is? Chris Harrison? She looks down on the playmates and the girls with implants and the girls without jobs who are just looking for a free ride. We haven't had the pleasure of meeting Mama Michaels before, but we're sure she would be amazing and just shake her head at her son's antics. But surely Bret wouldn't kick out a girl with fake tatas just because his mother told him too. OK, mostly because there would be no one left.

Sidekick
So Antonio's got his mom... and some random nameless guy who blows a conch shell a lot. That's no Big John. Antonio needs a beefy guy around to help give him some dude advice, and also to pick up the girls when they get too drunk (hopefully they will eventually).

Eliminations
Say what you will about Bret, but at least he's got the guts to eliminate the girls in person, giving out tour passes to the ones he wants to keep around and then bidding farewell to the others. Antonio had leis served up on covered dinner trays and then stepped away from the table as the girls put them on. Way to keep your distance from the girls you supposedly like. Also, the two girls without leis he brings to the side for a little chat and then decides who gets to stay. To quote ROL's Ashley, "Lame."

All in all, My Antonio feels like a watered down Bachelor with a slightly famous person and less like the Rock of Love I was hoping for. It's sort of sad, really.

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