Beauty and the Geek is the feel-good reality show where singles looking for love let go of preconceived ideas and really get to know someone they may not previously have given a chance.
With less concocted drama than other reality dating shows, fans love the sweet moments between the two groups of contestants as they realise they have more in common than they thought.
TV presenter and resident beauty Sophie Monk is back to pair 10 geeks with 10 beauties, hoping love is more than skin deep and opposites attract.
The winning couple, voted by the other beauties and geeks, walks away with $100,000 in prize money.
Who are this year's contestants?
Aaron, 30, a train driver from NSW
Aaron from Sydney knows everything there is to know about trains.
His childhood dream was to become a train driver so, when he’s not driving them, he loves to sit by the tracks and watch them go by.
Aaron is hoping to find someone who will share his passion.
His dream date would be taking a girl to a train station near a river and a walking track.
"It would be good to set up a picnic by the water and watch the trains go by," he says.
However, his shyness has held him back.
"I try to be friendly and make jokes with people, but there’s always something in the back of my mind, thinking I might say the wrong thing, so I overthink situations a lot," he reveals.
"I’m hoping to learn to be more confident and get pushed out of my comfort zone."
Alexander, 27, a bookworm from South Australia
Alex is a maths teacher from South Australia who lives alone with his 18 house plants and his cat, Coconut.
He loves Dr Who and is looking for a girl he can talk philosophy with and show around his extensive library.
Bookworm Alex says he’s introverted, but grows more chatty the more comfortable he is with people.
Alex skipped a year in high school and being a different age to other students meant he didn’t always fit in.
The memory of those days makes it hard for him to feel confident, especially around girls.
He says: “I want to learn how to be naturally confident and not just put on a brave face when I go out. I want to be a better version of me.”
Anthony, 26, Harry Potter fanatic from NSW
There’s nothing Anthony, a digital content director, doesn’t know about the Potterverse, and he is a proud Gryffindor.
Admitting he’s shy around new people, Anthony retreats into his Harry Potter world when he’s feeling insecure.
On the other hand, when taking part in cosplay with fellow fans, he comes to life, especially when he’s playing characters like Harry or Captain America.
Anthony was bullied at high school, which has made him a little mistrustful of people and forced him to put his guard up.
But he’s hoping this experience will help him let people in.
He’s banking on learning more about himself, finding a beauty who can build up his confidence ... and maybe finding a love like Lily and James Potter.
Chris, 30, International Yu-Gi-Oh! champion from SA
By day Chris is a software engineer, but his real passion is playing Japanese card game Yu-Gi-Oh!
Highly competitive, yet lacking in confidence when it comes to dating, he finds it hard to meet girls in an industry that’s filled with men.
Chris has been all over the world for Yu-Gi-Oh! tournaments, including Las Vegas.
All those years of working hard means he’s missed out on a lot of socialising, and now he wants to make up for lost time.
"I’ve spent most of my time hanging around people who share my interests, so I don’t tend to add a lot to conversations around things I’m not specifically interested in," he says.
"I’d like to learn more about how to interact with everyone, not just the people I know who share my interests."
Chris also admits he would like some help from his beauty about how to be more fashionable: "I basically have no style, no fashion sense at all."
Jason, 29, a musician from Victoria
Self-confessed hermit Jason is a data scientist from Victoria and a talented musician who can play multiple instruments.
Looking to get out and meet new people, he says he has always been introverted and, after lockdowns and working from home, he finds it hard to feel comfortable socialising in big groups.
“Everything I do is geeky," Jason says.
"I work as a data scientist, I play video games, board games, role-playing games.
"I love philosophy, coding, and I’m pretty geeky about my music too.”
As a guy who rarely leaves his apartment, he hopes taking the leap to be on this show will help him break out, but after a friend urged him to apply for Beauty and the Geek he became nervous
“I normally take things one step at a time, I just dip my toe in,” he says.
“But this is the exact opposite.
"It’s nerve-wracking though exciting
"This will be a challenge and I just want to step out of my comfort zone.”
Jayden, 24, a martial arts expert from NSW
Even though he’s a black belt in martial arts, Jayden is more a lover than a fighter.
Confident and intense, he has been training since school after dealing with bullies.
A bookworm who loves everything from fantasy to maths, Jayden has different groups of friends but wants to find new ones who share his interests.
"I like the idea of meeting people who are geeky like me and have their own interests," he says.
"But we all are here for the same reason.
"I want to have those personal friends I can call up for advice when something bad happens or if I’m upset."
Jayden works as a mail officer and is also a bartender and a tutor, which he says makes him a workaholic.
His workload is a factor in still being single.
Coming into the Beauty and the Geek experience, Jayden is excited about the geek makeovers, but ...
“To be honest, I don’t know if I can make myself look good," he says.
"It’ll be interesting, to say the least.
"I’m hoping to look good.
"I’m not looking at Ryan Reynolds-level of good, just better!”
Michael, 25, children's party entertainer from NSW
A man of many roles, Michael is a part-time children’s party entertainer, part-time crypto trader and confessed "full-time geek".
He’s had a few girlfriends but still feels anxious around groups of women.
"I try and remember to breathe and relax," he says.
"I think I have put on a mask in front of girls to hide the nerves and anxiety behind a big smile and the jokes, but I’m always overthinking what I’m saying to a girl."
Michael loves gaming with his flatmates when he’s not working and learning history.
He has his work cut as a children’s entertainer where he dresses up as characters like Spider-Man, Captain America, and Shaggy from Scooby Doo (we can definitely see that one).
Hoping to find a real connection with his beauty, Michael considers himself a romantic.
He is most looking forward to taking on the challenges with his partner.
Mike, 20, a Batman fanatic from Queensland
Mike might come off as confident as a trivia and events host, but put him in a one-on-one situation and he freezes, especially in front of girls.
"I talk to fill space to make sure there’s no silence or opportunity for awkwardness; in intimate conversations I find I fidget and get stressed," he says.
He works at a Brisbane radio station, but it’s Batman that really gets him excited.
With a dream of owning a Batmobile and writing his own script for a Batman movie, Mike resonates with the famous character in that he has flaws but always builds himself back up, looking for ways to overcome setbacks.
He jokes that his love for Batman might be a reason why he’s single and says he struggles to pick up on signals from girls.
He’s not necessarily looking for a beauty to fall in love with, although that would be an added bonus.
"I’m open to finding love, but at the same time I really want lifelong friends and to gain some confidence in myself," Mike says.
Nate, 20, a Japanese anime expert from South Australia
Nate’s mother encouraged him to come into this experience, thinking it would be a good chance to "spruce up my romantic skills and meet some cool geeks".
Not one to think too far into the future, Nate has no expectations of his relationship with his beauty and will let whatever happens happen.
"It’s going to be a new experience and challenging, but that’s as far as I’ve thought about it," he says.
"I’d like to learn to give myself more credit and learn more about myself."
A computer science student, he grew up in lots of different countries and cities, which helped him adapt to new social settings and groups.
After settling in Adelaide, Nate discovered anime and now has hundreds of figurines, video games and other memorabilia.
He has learnt to draw it as well.
Looking forward to the geek makeovers, while a little nervous about the challenges, Nate is hoping to build on his confidence ... and maybe find a little romance.
Samuel, 25, an e-sport champion from Victoria
Playing E-Sports professionally, Sam is very competitive and loves a little friendly sledging of his opponents.
He has the confidence to take on big players, but the years of COVID have seen him retreat into a shell, and now he wants to go back to his old self.
As hype man to his E-Sports team, he helps to keep their vibes high and emotions in check, which he thinks he’ll be able to do for his fellow geeks.
"If any of the geeks need anything, I’m going to be out there to hype them up and help," Sam says.
He has played almost 8000 hours of Counter-Strike and has a penchant for all things geek.
"I love being a geek because it’s about having passion for something," he says.
"I’ve shaped my whole career, my whole life, around Counter-Strike and E-Sports and I love it.
"Not many people can say they love what they do, but I love everything about what I do."
Sam has dated in the past and is definitely open to meeting a beauty he can connect with.
He’d love to win, but really just wants to meet someone who will help him out of his comfort zone.
Aimee, 23, a trainee nurse from Tasmania
Aimee is from Hobart, where she says there’s not much of a dating scene, so trying to find love is not easy.
"The dating scene is honestly terrible," she says.
"Never date a Tasmanian, unless it’s me!" she adds.
Confident and funny, Aimee loves socialising, and when she’s not on a dance floor she’s at home with her pets or practising yoga.
She’s hoping her confidence will help her geek to find his and is looking forward to meeting a new kind of guy, who is better than the types she usually goes for.
"I think a geek would be good for me because he won’t have a criminal record, or be a bad boy who would cheat on me," Aimee says.
"He might have a receding hairline, if we’re lucky," she adds.
Done with the rogues and the cheaters, Aimee is looking for a geek who is loving, happy, funny – but most of all genuine.
Angelique, 21, a social media content creator from NSW
Calling herself "an open alien book", Angelique is one of a kind who likes telling people she’s from Mars and sometimes shocks them with her zany personality.
Energetic and always positive, she greets folks by calling them "alien" and creates content for her social media platforms by going up to strangers and doing crazy challenges.
Looking for a world that’s full of good vibes with vibrant people, Angelique hopes to align with her geek to make him more assertive and stand up for what he wants.
Angelique doesn’t think she’s your usual glamour, saying: "I’m eccentric, I’m not the typical, big-booby beauty.
"I feel like I’m a rainbow gem that has yet to be discovered.
"I feel like I’m hidden and I want to learn more.
"I want to know more about the world around me and that’s why I’m here, to see if the geeks can teach me that."
While not necessarily looking for love, Angelique isn’t running from it if she forms a strong connection with her geek.
She’s looking for someone genuine and “amazeballs”.
Bri, 30, an ex-NRL cheerleader from NSW
Loyal, loud and full of energy, Bri is a medical secretary and former NRL cheerleader from Sydney.
As someone who gets along with everybody, Bri wants to use her confidence and positivity to bring out the best in her geek.
"I would teach him to always look at the bright side of things," she says.
"It’s either in your life for a reason or a season.
"I like people who remain humble and kind, no matter what."
Bri loves her makeup, lashes, tanning, and dressing to impress, so she has the beauty part nailed.
But as she says, that’s only skin deep: "It’s not what’s on the outside that counts, it’s what’s on the inside. You have to be beautiful on the inside to be a true beauty."
Coming from a big, noisy family, Bri will have no problems getting along with her fellow beauties and geeks and wants to be the glue to keep them all together.
Daniella, 26, a Miss Universe finalist from WA
There’s no denying Daniella is an absolute beauty, but she says people are often surprised to find out she’s studying primary education and works at a creche looking after children of parents who are learning English.
She gets great joy in making learning fun for them.
Daniella is also a model who entered Miss Universe last year as a WA finalist, so she still loves fashion and beauty.
The competition was a worthwhile experience as she was coming out of a bad break-up that left her feeling very low.
It gave her some confidence again and an insight into having a voice and speaking up.
She says a common misconception about her and other beauties is that they are full of confidence, which is actually something she wants to help the geeks and the beauties find.
"After watching the show last year, it was wonderful to see the growth in the geeks and also the beauties," she says.
"We have our down days and insecurities, so I hope we can make this a really nice, positive experience for both beauties and geeks."
Emily, 25, a flight attendant from NSW
Admitting she’s the loudest person at every party, Emily says her favourite thing to do is "tanning, tanning and fake tanning".
As a flight attendant who has already been to 56 countries, she exudes confidence and is used to making people feel at ease.
But she is hoping to use the Beauty and the Geek experience to open up and show her vulnerable side.
"I want to talk more about my feelings, rather than always keeping things light-hearted," Emily says.
"I want to find someone who can treat me the way I deserve to be treated.
"I’m looking for love, but if I get great friends out of it, then that’s amazing."
After some rough break-ups, Emily has tried dating apps but usually deletes them after 20 minutes.
She hopes the geeks will show her a different side to the types of guys she usually dates.
Heidi, 20, a waitress from Victoria
A country girl at heart, Heidi dreams of becoming a police officer.
After leaving her town for the big smoke of Melbourne, she is what her friends describe as a 'hype girl' who likes to have fun and play pranks.
She used to be shy, but Heidi – who can’t leave the house without her makeup on – is proud of how far she’s come with her confidence and ability to make people feel good.
Heidi loves romantic comedies and going out with friends for a dance, and is ready to meet a geek who is her polar opposite.
"I’ve always gone for the same type of person and I need to change it up," she says.
"It will be really nice to meet someone who could be my best friend or to find love, but I just want to find someone who will appreciate me for me."
Heidi hopes her natural banter will click with her geek right away and help them find a connection.
Karly, 28, a hairdresser from WA
Karly has a big heart and loves love.
On a few occasions, she says people have compared her to the donkey from Shrek because of her loyalty and sense of humour.
She gets along with everyone, does her best to make others feel good, and says she can talk to a tree – which comes in handy for her job as a hairdresser.
She’s done it since she was 16 and finds that it makes her like a counsellor to her clients, handing out advice while she styles their hair.
Karly hopes to find someone long-term in her life.
By coming on the show, she’s open to finding love, but mostly wants to learn from this new experience.
"I’ve had quite a lot of life experience and I have a lot of good vibes to spread," she says.
"I love helping people wherever I can, and if I can bring confidence out in a geek, then that’s my job done."
Sophie, 20, aspiring Prime Minister from WA
With a dream of becoming either Australia’s prime minister or a comedian, quirky Sophie speaks Mandarin and studies international politics.
But if she can’t get a car spot at her university, she believes she wasn’t meant to go that day.
Sophie says people often misjudge her and think she’s ditzy, but she has depth and knowledge that surprise them.
She also believes brains are more important than beauty, insisting that "beauty doesn’t last forever but brains do".
As a long-time fan of Beauty and the Geek, Sophie was encouraged to do the show by her mum, who thought she’d be perfect.
"My mum and I love the show and I know it would fill her heart up to watch me on it," she says.
Hoping to meet a geek she can have fun with, Sophie rather surprisingly admits she loves some of the geekier things in life, like LEGO and Pokemon, so maybe it won’t be too hard to form that connection.
Tara, 22, a mermaid performer from Victoria
It’s rare indeed to come across a real-life mermaid, but talented Tara is one.
As a professional entertainer for children’s birthday parties, she arrives with an impressive tail and loves bringing magic to young lives.
When she’s not being a mermaid, Tara is studying law, which she chose because she wants to help people and "make a difference".
Wanting to show that she is more than just a pretty face, Tara says: "I think the beauties are smart, fun, bubbly, positive people, and I want to show they can be taken seriously for their intellect and personalities, while still caring about their appearance."
She is looking for a decent man and hopes one of the geeks could possibly be the one for her.
Tegan, 26, a professional dancer from Victoria.
Living by the motto that everything happens for a reason, Tegan started dancing at the age of three and turned it into an impressive career.
She has been the lead tap dancer at Disneyland Paris and a cheerleader for the Melbourne Storm NRL team.
Feeling at a loss when work stalled due to COVID, she hopes making friends with the beauties and the geeks will get her out of her rut.
"I’m hoping my geek will help me to learn to believe in myself, and I want to teach him too – how to come out of his shell, and definitely about the flirting game!" she says.
Looking for someone who likes the great outdoors, Tegan is prepared to find love with her geek – a man who will treat her the way she deserves.
Beauty and the Geek 2022 will premiere on Sunday July 17 at 7pm on Channel 9 and 9Now
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