Beauty and the Geek
Caitilin and Chuck may be the big winners, but after watching tonight's finale, to me Chuck seems like a dud who hasn't really learned much from the experience. He was grouchy and seemed unwilling to accept people and their differences — like Richard — and the only way he was able to pick up girls was to pretend that he's gay, and basically pouted when his gal pal Scarlet got ousted. He made hardly any effort in the kitchen when Caitilin was trying to teach him how to cook, and ignored her obvious discomfort when it came to being physically threatened. In fact, did it seem to anyone else that she was a little too excited to hit him in the stomach as hard as she could? They earned the cash by being a strong team, obviously paying attention to each others stories and remembering how to spell her impossible name — Hey, so did I, do I win a prize too? But to me Richard and Mindi were more enjoyable to watch and to root for. Richard can be totally obnoxious, but when he actually tried kayaking and seemed to like it, and he showed off his piano playing skills and made sure his partner was having a good time. Seems like even if he was acting out for the cameras that some things sunk in along the line. Either way the social experiment has ended, or at least until the reunion special next week, and I do think that Ashton had the right idea to make this a social experiment and not a dating show, but that won't keep me from addictively watching Average Joe for the rest of the summer. — Angel Cohn

Dancing with the Stars
Well, as expected Kelly and Alec won. I had a my fingers crossed for John but I figured she had a slam dunk when it came to the audience vote, but I was really surprised that she won over the judges too with a perfect score to boot. I have to hand it to her, not sure what dances she was doing in the freestyle but she looked H-O-T, managed not to fall out of her dress and seemed to actually smile, so that is a major improvement over where she started. If I were Kelly, I wouldn't be surprised if the General Hospital writers somehow worked in some dancing scenes into her storyline. Hey, they could even hire Alec to boogie with her, he's got those soapy good looks and he'd be great so long as it didn't require a lot of dialogue. But I thought that John — who was such a consistent performer — totally took home the much needed comic relief prizewith his hip wriggling action and he managed to do the heavy lifting. I'm not trying to insinuate that Charlotte is heavy or anything, but it has got to be easier to be lifted and spun around than to lift someone else. I'm guessing. And he had Patrick Swayze in his corner. The Dirty Dancing guy he sure knows a thing or two about lifts with his choreography background and his ability to make Jennifer Grey fly. I hope that sweet John isn't too bummed out that he didn't win the big disco ball looking trophy, at least he's got that pretty wife to go home with and hopefully a lasting relationship with Charlotte, so sweet! Not to mention the Progressive commercials that aired during tonight's ep which were much funnier than early eliminee Rachel's silly cell phone ads. But I'm sad that this fun show has ended, it was great to watch the comeback kid Kelly really learn to dance from the ground up... it gives hope to the rest of us. I mean, I learned to do the hustle today, that's just one step away from the cha cha right? — AC

30 Days
As much as I want to criticize Ryan for his homophobic ways before he began his month in San Francisco, you've got to give the kid credit for signing up for it at all. And for not turning and fleeing once he saw that larger-than-life nude painted on the bathroom wall. But his host, Ed, has the patience of a saint for putting up with the kind of comments and questions that came out of Ryan's mouth sometimes. Thanks to Ed's skills as a tour guide through the gay world, Ryan quickly found familiar ground in the "notoriously gay" Castro district: going to the gym, playing on a softball team, attending church. And though every other sentence was some declaration that he was surrounded by gay guys, Ryan even managed to survive going to a gay bar and getting a job selling gourmet cheeses. Even as he grew more comfortable around his new friends and neighbors, he never wavered in his conviction that homosexuality is a sin. I'm not a Christian, so I really don't get how he can interpret one passage of the Bible so literally while allowing more wiggle room for things like greed, lust and killing, but it was pretty evident that Reverend Penny wasn't going to change Ryan's mind anytime soon. Instead, he dropped his obsession with labeling the sinners and started enjoying the people. It looked like his friendship with Ed put a human face on the issue. Not that Ryan was instantly the poster child for tolerance, as he showed when his friend from home visited and the two made an immature scene in Daddy's bar. "When you do something like dance in a big gay bar without your shirt on, they might assume that you're gay, no matter what you say," Ed soberly observed. And throwing a wine and cheese party from the Queer Eye textbook didn't exactly prove how much he'd grown. But considering the uphill battle gays still face for equality in this country, at least his baby steps are in the right direction. — Sabrina Rojas Weiss

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