As far as new concepts went Sexy Beast was definitely on the creative side of the spectrum. Yet it miserably failed not only on its premise but also failed to meet the basic mix of a good dating show.
Sexy Beast is a Netflix dating show, that asks its contestants to cover themselves with a mask before testing their chemistry with the other contestants in the show. In each of the six episodes of the show, a bachelor/bachelorette gets a chance to choose between three potential suitors in heterosexual pairings. All of them are covered in some quite well-made prosthetics masks, hiding their outward appearance, basically trying to figure each other’s compatibility based on just their personality.
The show follows the elimination format. Two rounds of dating are kept to eliminate one suitor each and the one left remaining is the lucky one that gets a chance to date the face behind the mask. The first round is all about speed dating and the second round has proper dates ranging from, a day in the amusement park to a romantic bowling night. After each round, a ditching ceremony with a full-on evaluation is hosted at the Sexy Beasts Manor. Following which each leaving contestant shows his real face, which is quite overly dramatic and mutes the point of not going for looks.
When we first came across this concept, we quite liked it. As a firm believer of personality-over-looks, we essentially thought this show would give a whole new meaning to reality dating shows ( that I am particularly not a fan of), which overly focus on the looks of the person. But unfortunately, none of our expectations were met by the show.
The show was very shallow, something you usually expect from dating shows but considering that it was trying to go with a premise of personality over looks, it was very much expected that conversations would be on the bolder side. Yet we only see conversations of superficial nature, circling their temporary personas, where PERSONALITY is missing.
Additionally, every person on this show is very much on the prettier side as far as looks are concerned. It seems like they did not even focus on their concept and just marketed it based on those highly fantastic-looking masks. Maybe the idea was not fully developed or maybe it was just not supposed to be a serious show, are the thoughts that we take away from the show.
One thing that shines through the whole show, is the prosthetic masks. They are very well made, one cannot easily picture who is behind them. Ranging from greek statues to aliens, the creativity behind the masks is something that should be applauded. The only thing that they lack is meaning. The masks that are chosen don’t carry any meaning regarding why they were chosen in the first place and how do they reflect the personality of that person. They are just used as props, which seems like a missed opportunity now.
Also, the masks fail to cover the physique of a person. A muscle-tight sweater reveals a lot, which is not taken into account by the creators of the show. Hence the show outwardly portrays a great concept with depth but inside is just a shallow crumble.
The basic necessity of a dating show is the want for a relationship by the contestants of the show (something you can see from the shows like Bachelors and Bachelorette ) but this show lacks that stability as well. “A second date” after the show has ended is a vague concept, hence the stakes are shockingly very low. It doesn’t seem like contestants are invested in the concept of dating. “I’m a boobs guy,” Bennett says. “It’s just something in my nature I can’t control.” When comments like these are made you question the integrity of the show.
The only saving grace is the narrator because he seems as disinterested in the show as we are. He too can see the comic aspect of the show and manages to lift us out of our boredom and exasperation. Sometimes he manages to say exactly what you are thinking!
In conclusion Sexy Beast is silly and not bizarre enough, making me question whether or not we should trust Netflix trailers anymore. It could have broken some barriers but by sticking to the repetitive storyline, it has not even cracked the binge-worthy genre. If you are looking for something with just lighthearted fun, that goes on in the background while doing your work, then you can give it a try. But according to me, Sexy Beast is a disappointment that is not nearly as fun as we hoped it to be.
Let us know what you think? Are you going to watch the show? If you have watched it do you agree or disagree with me?