Warning: this article contains spoilers for the TV show FBoy Island.
“Nice guys finish last” is the phrase at the center of HBO Max Original FBOY Island. The show, much like the phrase, makes absolutely zero sense, but this dumpster fire is an absolute masterpiece that deserves recognition similar to The Bachelor and Love Island.
FBOY Island is fairly straightforward: three women are trapped on an island with twenty four men. Twelve of the men are self-proclaimed “nice guys,” and are on the show to find a genuine connection with one of the women; the other twelve are “fboys” who are only there for the money, and will do seemingly anything to get it. The women have to try to figure out which is which, all while trying to form romantic connections.
The elimination process is similar to The Bachelor (I think; honestly I’ve never watched a full episode of The Bachelor). Each week, the three women individually choose their two bottom picks of men. They then eliminate one of them, and the former contestants reveal whether they entered the show as a “nice guy” or “fboy.” This reveal was scrapped halfway through, however, when host and comedian Nikki Glaser told all of the remaining contestants to reveal their status. The show continued as normal, except the women knew if the men that remained came on the show as “nice guys” or “fboys.”
The one flaw with this concept is that I know very few women who would be willing to go on an island with twenty four men, half of them admitting that they’re manipulative. But the amazing Celisa (CJ) Franco, Sarah Emig, and Nakia Renee were brave enough to do so. CJ initially comes off as vain but is extremely intelligent and witty. Sarah is shy but with a quirky and adventurous side that makes her endearing, and Nakia is laid back and overall the kind of person that you want to be best friends with.
The best part of the show, however, has to be its sense of self-awareness that many similar dating shows lack. When fboys are eliminated, they get sent to “limbro,” which is a fenced off area on the beach with cots and wooden weights for working out. There are often comedic interludes ranging from eliminated fboys getting a “gender studies” class from Glaser to B-roll of them flexing their muscles and lifting aforementioned wooden barbells in a format obviously mocking similar shots in other dating shows. The show’s ability to make fun of itself is what makes it watchable.
During the finale, it was revealed how the contestants could earn a cash prize. If a woman chose a nice guy, they would split 100,000 dollars and be able to continue the relationship after the show. If she chose an “fboy,” however, he would reveal the decision he made earlier that day; would he split the money, similarly to the nice guy, or would he take the 100,000 dollars for himself completely and end the relationship? This was to test if they “reformed” into a nice guy or continued their toxic fboy ways.
All three women coincidentally chose one nice guy and one fboy to bring to the finale. CJ decided to continue her relationship with nice guy “New Jared,” nicknamed such because he was introduced to the show later on in the season. Her “fboy,” Casey, then revealed that he would have split the money if he was chosen.
Nakia took a chance on fboy “OG Jared,” who was there since the beginning of the show, and he decided to split the money and continue the relationship. So far, so good. But Sarah, on the other hand, didn’t have as smooth of a finale.
Sarah chose Garrett. For the uninitiated, Garrett was the worst of the worst. He lied about the seriousness of a relationship he was in before joining the show and he joked about Sarah’s body to the other men. If that wasn’t bad enough, his career was in BitCoin investing. His CAREER, not hobby. If a man being a BitCoin Investor for a full-time job isn’t the biggest red flag, I don’t know what is.
Garrett, unsurprisingly, chose to take all the money. Sarah was shocked and betrayed, until host Glaser swooped in to save her. Glaser decided that it wouldn’t be fair to reward bad behavior in the form of giving money to such a horrible person, so she revealed that the $100,000 was going to a charity of Sarah’s choosing. Garrett was obviously mad, despite saying that he still “won.” Stay mad, Garrett.
FBOY Island is as rage inducing as it is entertaining. Watching the women fall for men that are walking red flags feels like torture, but the release of seeing the fboys get their comeuppance at the end is all worth it. The cherry on top is that the show is extremely self-aware of how ridiculous it is, and makes fun of itself every step of the way. That, coupled with the jokes made by Glaser makes FBOY Island the best show I’ve seen to date. I have no clue why it only has a forty percent on Rotten Tomatoes, nor why it is rated a mere five out of ten on IMDB. FBOY Island is a masterpiece the likes of which humans have never seen before.