When Jenny McCarthy left her gig as host of MTV's Singled Out in 1997, loyal fans of the hit dating show were at a loss (until they laid their eyes on Carmen Electra, of course). Fast-forward 15 years, and McCarthy is back on the dating game circuit — this time as host of NBC's Love in the Wild (Tuesdays, 10/9c).
The 39-year-old blonde bombshell is never one to hold back, so we asked her to get candid with us about the show — and she certainly did. Below, McCarthy tells us why she would never be a contestant, names her favorite "naughty" contestant and explains why the good girls will last longer than the girls who give it up too quickly.
Once you got to know the contestants, did you have a favorite?
Jenny McCarthy: Without a doubt, I would say Ben. Not only was he easy on the eyes... initially I thought he was a brat, but what it turned out to be was that he was just his authentic self all the time. He is funny, dashing... he is just a doll.
And which of the ladies did you like best?
McCarthy: My favorite naughty girl was Tara. I enjoyed watching her the most because she was easily disgusted with the guys. And she didn't have a problem saying it.
Strategy-wise, do you think the couples that are romantically interested in each other will do better than those that just compete as friends?
McCarthy: After watching the show, I was amazed to see that the couples that got intimate too quickly broke up rather fast. So the girls that were the good girls tend to stay in the game longer.
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Do you think that is some kind of metaphor for real life?
McCarthy: Yes! So ladies, if you want to take notes, I think you gotta hold off. This show clearly was a research project that was published on national TV.
Do you think it's better to stay loyal to one person the whole time or to switch partners when given the opportunity?
McCarthy: One of the things that I love about the show is that they initially choose based on looks only, and by giving them the option to switch, it allows them to switch because of chemistry. A lot of time, the hot chick that they thought was going to be the one turned out to be the psycho chick. Staying loyal does not work in this game if it's not working out for you as a couple.
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If there was a celebrity version of Love in the Wild, would you consider doing it?
McCarthy: I would not compete on this show because of the horrific adventures that they put these kids on, but I have to tell you... it really is an amazing way to meet the true person that you're dating. Sometimes when you go on dates, it takes six months to get to know who that person is.
What do you think makes you different from other reality TV hosts?
McCarthy: What I wanted to add to the show this season was some fun. A lot of the time, the hosts take everything very seriously. I wanted to throw that away and bring a lot of Singled Out Jenny to the game.
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What aspects of your Singled Out persona did you incorporate?
McCarthy: I make fun of the guys. I cheer on the girls. I give them misinformation just to mess with them. I told them they were going to die based on their living conditions. I wanted to include some comedy so you definitely will see me having fun with them.