''Joe Millionaire''

European Vacation

Three great things about the next Joe -- First, this Cowboy Joe makes Jessica Simpson look smart, and the European women are pretty funny too, says Jennifer Armstrong

David Smith, The Next Joe Millionaire: An International Affair | COWBOY CHIC ''The Next Joe,'' Smith, is from Texas
Image credit: Joe Millionaire: Aaron Rapaport
COWBOY CHIC ''The Next Joe,'' Smith, is from Texas

Three great things about the next Joe

You tuned in Monday thinking Oh, I'll just peek really quick to see what this ''Next Joe Millionaire'' is all about, then I'm totally going to go work out. Then when you started watching, you thought, Okay, maybe I'll watch the whole hour tonight, but next Monday I'm totally working out.

But just admit it: You're in it for the long haul. We are all spending our Mondays and Tuesdays (yes, starting next week, two nights a week!) for the foreseeable future with the new faux millionaire and his European bevy of dating-show virgins.

Great thing No. 1 about ''The Next Joe Millionaire'': The Next Joe himself, cowboy David Smith. He rides ''bareback broncs'' for a living. He says things like, ''Cowboys, most of them ain't rich… How can I take girls out for a fancy supper if I only make $11,000 a year?''

He takes copious notes while the first ''Millionaire'''s breakout star, butler Paul Hogan, teaches him about Europe so he can seem at least a little believable as a guy worth $80 million who owns an Italian villa. He can't stop calling the guy who's supposed to be his butler ''sir.'' He asks, during Paul's geography lesson, ''Where's Dutch again?'' If only Jessica Simpson were available.

Great thing No. 2: The European ladies' total ignorance of the reality dating show routine. It's kind of sweet how excited they get about everything. Hostess Samantha Harris (wither Alex McLeod?) got only as far as, ''His name is David…'' before eliciting audible gasps. The reaction was almost deafening by the time she said, ''And he's a real American cowboy.''

Oh, and from the looks of the next episode's previews, they don't seem to know there's such a thing as ''elimination ceremonies.'' Are they gonna be shocked to go on group dates? Will they know what ''one-on-one time'' is? Will they know they're obligated, as dating show participants, to use the words ''connection'' and ''chemistry'' every two seconds?

Great thing No. 3: The European ladies' observations about American culture. Quoth the Czech Republic's Linda: ''I'm going to go to Texas and live on a ranch and eat the ranch dressing every day.'' Said her countrywoman Karolina: ''[A rodeo] is a festival with horses. It's like the horse… you know, you ever see 'Charlie's Angels'?'' Remarked Swedish babe Lina when David first appeared before them, ''I like his belt.''

Only one complaint, really: Fox is stretching the show out to twice a week for ratings grubbing, plain and simple. (Nothing happened in this episode! Not even the obligatory first-night ball!) Still, if it stays this entertaining, that may be okay. In the wise words of Lina, ''We were all excited that he was a millionaire cowboy. Not only do we think it's very cool, but it's very funny.'' That's the truth, Lina, it shore 'nuff is.

Originally posted Oct 21, 2003