For some reason, the people that work for the company that churns out holiday-themed made-for-tv movies seem to think the idea of paying someone to pretend to be your fiance when you go home for the holidays is a. realistic and b. a situation that would lead to romance and not all your most prized possessions being stolen. The idea, which I believe was created in a different kind of Santa’s Xmas Factory, has even spread to the real world, demonstrated in Craigslist posts like this, though unfortunately, this particular offer has expired and is no longer viewable. We’re assuming, however, that the gentleman found what he was looking for.
My Fake Fiance (2009, ABC Family)
Melissa Joan Hart and Joey Lawrence get married for the gifts and the money, because they’re both horrible people who recognize that marriage is largely a societal ritual unrelated to love. Along the way, they develop the feelings. Hart and Lawrence’s chemistry (and history on shows that were popular during the ’90s) led to an eventual show of their own on ABC Family called, creatively, Melissa and Joey, which was — shockingly or not — renewed for a third season. Hart was also in ABC Family’s Holiday in Handcuffs where she FORCES a man to pretend to be her fiance, indicating that the actress may have a troubling understanding of what situations actually lead to happiness in romantic relationships.
Holiday Engagement (2011, Hallmark Channel)
Billed as a “Hallmark Original” (as if that’s a stamp of quality akin to getting an Oscar), Bonnie Sommerville’s “perfect” (really, pretty boring and unattractive) fiance breaks up with her and so she hires an actor to pretend to be him for Thanksgiving because her mom is so crazy she feels like she has to. Not only does she have little to no chemistry with either the dude she wants back or the dude she eventually falls for, she also is like maybe a journalist who spends her time writing about puppies and has no career aspirations. This means I’m automatically biased against her and have no idea who would find her attractive, even the mildly cute dude she ends up with.
Hitched for the Holidays (2012, Lifetime)
Lawrence, unsatisfied with having done one fake fiance holiday flick, has teamed up this season with some no-name to literally do exactly the same movie as he did two years prior, this time, using what appears to be a Craigslist rip-off (at least he’s tech savvy now). This is the only one of the above movies I haven’t seen, so I can’t vouch as to the veracity of the beginning of this IMDB description: “An attractive pair agrees to be each others supposed significant other throughout the holidays to keep their meddling families at bay.” It premieres this Friday though, so I’ll report back.