Here’s a really forgotten relic from television history, Studs:
Studs is an American television game show which was produced by Fox Television Studios for local television stations. The series premiered on March 11, 1991 as a midseason series, did well enough in its run to be renewed for a full season, and aired for two more full seasons until September 9, 1993.
Studs was hosted by comedian Mark DeCarlo, his first hosting job, DeCarlo would later gain recognition down the road as the voice of Jimmy Neutron’s father, Hugh, in both the Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius movie and TV show.
Studs follows a somewhat similar format to that of The Dating Game and Love Connection. Two men go on dates with three women; afterward, the men would have to match answers with the women regarding the date. Each correct answer would win the man a stuffed heart. At the end of each episode, each woman would decide which man they chose as a “stud” and wanted to go out with again. If the men could correctly guess which woman chose them, both received an all-expense paid date to a location of their choice. In the event that two couples chose correctly, the man with the most stuffed hearts won the date.
Studs provoked some controversy because the answers on the show often discussed the contestants’ sexual relationships in detail.
A few episodes featured variations on the usual theme, with individual shows having two women date three men, (this episode was alternatively titled “Studettes”) women who went out with younger men, women who wanted to go out with millionaires, and men who went out with magazine centerfolds.
For the 1990s, this seemed like a perfect modernization of the classic concept of Love Connection because this is basically what this is, a 90s modernized version of Love Connection in which a contestant would go on a date with a member of the opposite sex and they would talk about it on the air with the host. Only his time, they would go into details about their sexual encounters too.
It was an nice blending for the time period, a similar format done with a new twist and kind of a fun new twist.
This show did also have some notable episodes. For example, does the name Ron Goldman ring a bell to you?:
Yes, that’s the same Ron Goldman who two years before he was murdered (along with Nicole Brown Simpson) in 1994 for which O.J. Simpson was found civilly liable, but acquitted for criminally.
But that’s not all, three daughters of Illinois Republican Congressman and Presidential Candidate Phil Crane appeared on the show in 1992 along with Dr. Dan Diaco stated he was a contestant on Studs, billed as Sam. While on the Bubba the Love Sponge show May 30, 2013.
All well and good but here’s two surprises for you, guess which two actors today appeared on Studs? One will surprise you, Chris Hardwick…yes, @midnight’s Chris Hardwick was a contestant on Studs a few years before he became famous with another dating game show from the 90s, we’ll talk about that next week, and not only him but also…Jon Hamm. In fact, this would be the first of two different dating game shows he’d appear on in the 90s as when I was trying to look for the clip for him on Studs, this came up from another game show he was on when he was 25:
WOW….I mean, it’s amazing what over 20 years will do a guy, he went from that to being such the badass he was in this weekend’s Baby Driver. Just goes to show you that anything’s possible.
So, it seems like Studs was a success for the timeperiod, right down to being parodied on The Simpsons in 1992:
So, how come it only lasted until 1993 despite high ratings and being a big hit with younger audiences. I mean, what else did Fox have planned for the fall of 1993 that was so big that…oh, that’s right, The Chevy Chase Show:
Yep, the Fox stations that were carrying Studs at the time axed the series to give The Chevy Chase Show its’ timeslot. I’ve already talked about the show in the past so there’s really no reason to go further into how well that turned out….not well at all.
So, Studs, a show that seemed perfect for that timeperiod, a modernization of a classic dating show concept gets tossed to the side and because it was gone so quickly, this show that was once extremely popular just kind of gets pushed off to the side of forgotten 90s TV relics.
I would say that maybe this is something that should be brought back but to be honest, the show was kind of ahead of its’ time and to try to bring it into this new age of television that we’re living in right now, it’d be kind of hard to do, not impossible but most of what they said on the series back then was ahead of its’ time, now you can hear this kind of stuff on every TV show nowadays.
I am glad I actually get to talk about this because honestly, Studs is kind of a fun show, I wish it would’ve gotten a little more recognition after kind of fading out of the spotlight for a while but hey, that’s the power of Youtube, you can find several Studs episodes on there among other places and I would recommend definitely giving them a watch.
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