Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Find My First Love - A Recap and Review

Find My First Love is exactly what out sounds like - people search for the one who got away. The show, which airs on the FYI network, plays out a little like an episode of MTV's Catfish, only less creepy.

This episode features Alicia, who was in search of her first love Benjamin. They met in France when she was 18. They had good times and bad, Alicia returned to the United States and they lost touch.

Paired with some intense music, Cherry Healey, the host, determined that Alicia may be living on a fantasy, or maybe she and Benjamin could have something real. In true reality TV fashion, the contact info Alicia has for Benjamin is all outdated, and in a twist, Benjamin has a second identity that he uses. When talking to a private investigator, Alicia was reminded that her story may not be all sunshine and roses - sometimes people end up married, in jail or even dead. Once we got through that low point, Alicia was surprised with the fact that she'd be heading to France to find Benjamin.

Alicia's first home visit in France proved useless, as Benjamin no longer resided at that address. Which is not surprising, given that this show is probably set up very well behind the scenes to ensure there's enough drama to fill an hour time slot. Then, Alicia wandered around asking people if they recognized Benjamin, which was obviously useless. Then Alicia had the interesting task of asking people if they knew of a local sex shop because Benjamin used to work at one. She found the store and Benjamin had worked there - Alicia was shown pictures of Benjamin and the body painting work he'd done. Unfortunately, the owner had no idea of his whereabouts. He did, though, ask if Alicia had one of Benjamin's children, which enforces the promiscuity that had been hinted at throughout the episode.

Cherry did her own investigation and found two addresses attached to Benjamin's alias. Alicia boarded a train to continue her search. Alicia told us that she's concerned about how she looks going after Benjamin, being that he had broken up with her and not the other way around.

Alicia arrived at the home address she was given. A woman came to the window when Alicia rang the bell. She looked devastated at first, but then came to realize that the woman was actually in a different apartment, Bejamin had left and his apartment was empty. She then went to the address listed as Benjamin's employer.

The private investigator on the show found another address that he was sure belonged to Benjamin and Alicia was sent on her way. Before she went, the show tracked down an old friend of Alicia's who came along for the ride (and probably to keep the show interesting). The home was Benjamin's, but surprise, he was magically in Paris for a week.

Alicia and Cherry met up in Paris. Cherry said she has to get the city talking about Benjamin. So Cherry made posters and she and Alicia hung them up everywhere. Then they did an interview with a popular radio station. Nothing worked at that time.

Alicia said that their last day in Paris had arrived. Just before it looked like hope was lost, the radio station called and said someone called them claiming to be Benjamin. They gave Cherry the phone number and she called it. Not surprisingly, Benjamin answered the call.

Cherry arranged for the pair to meet, and they shared a big hug. They discovered neither was married or had kids. They hugged more. Benjamin was clearly impressed with what Alicia went through. Benjamin said he missed Alicia and didn't want to leave her anymore.

Two months later, the pair was together in France. Benjamin said he'd grown up, shed his party boy ways, and was ready to be together with Alicia. Awww, happy ending! And that was it.

So how is the show?

 If you're a fan of Catfish, you'll like Find My First Love. It's a good show for the FYI network. It pairs well with Married at First Sight. Like Catfish, the show reads as part real, part staged. Like, the woman coming to the window at Benjamin's old apartment pretty much screamed "heyyyy this was set up for the cameras!" But Alicia's emotion seemed to be all real. And the fact that people magically had pictures of Benjamin available tells us that they were alerted in advance about the arrival of Alicia and the cameras.

If you're willing to set aside the fact that the show isn't as random as it seems, it's a good show to watch. It's well produced, flows clearly and keeps you watching as the show progresses. It's cool to see foreign places through the eyes of the camera. The views of France were absolutely beautiful.

Would I watch this show again? Yeah, definitely. It was good. Full of mini-tragedies with a happy ending. It keeps you strung along but wraps up nicely at the end with a neat little bow.

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