Master in social science
BERNARD Curry says a career in show business means he can tell the difference between someone being genuine and putting on an act – and the studious types from Beauty and the Geek really are as socially inept as they seem.
Curry – who was Hugo on Home and Away and whose other TV and film credits include Packed to the Rafters, Satisfaction, Blue Heelers, Crash Burn, Stingers, Neighbours and The Dish – says when you spend time with the geeks, it’s clear they are not putting on a show.
Julian really does enjoy stamp and button collecting, while Gilbert spends his down time collecting belt buckles or having a toot on his euphonium.
‘‘ But that’s who these guys are,’’ says Curry, who has returned from Los Angeles to host the social experiment show. ‘‘ We’ve had the conspiracy theorists talking over the past couple of seasons about the presence of faux geeks in the mansion, but the guys are straight up and down, the 100 per cent real deal.
‘‘ I think they’re a really sensitive, really warm bunch of guys. And they’re in the show for the right reasons. They’re here to have an experience unlike any other they’ll have for the rest of their lives. And they really embrace it. There are no performances taking place.
‘‘ Bendeguz might look like he’s putting on a performance but that’s part of his quirk. Whenever he’s in a situation, he tends to put on a mask, if you like, but I think that makes him an intriguing character. But it’s not as if he’s disingenuous, it’s just part of him.’’
But are the geeks naturally nervous of women or is it that their jobs and skills mean they simply don’t meet them?
‘‘ It’s the chicken and the egg thing,’’ Curry says. ‘‘ I think by definition these guys already have a nervousness towards women and I think they may move themselves into the situation where they don’t meet girls for that reason.
‘‘ Being a lab assistant or something means that you don’t have to have social graces, so that’s why they choose to do the things they do.
‘‘ As for the girls, they come across as confident but you wonder if it’s a front.
‘‘ Confidence can be the way you look and the way you act and it’s a mechanism that people can use to break down social barriers. But whether or not you’re truly confident is another thing.
‘‘ I think a lot of these girls have a lot of confidence and they use their physicality and their sexuality to get ahead in life. But do they have insecurities? Absolutely.’’
Curry won’t judge himself physically but says emotionally he has a foot in both the Beauty and the Geek camps.
‘‘ Emotionally I’m probably closer to a beauty,’’ he admits. ‘‘ I’ve got interests like quantum mechanics and physics and I’m really interested in the Large Hadron Collider and the Higgs boson, so I have a bit of geek in me. But I like to think I have social graces and I’m fairly confident. I can handle myself in social situations.’’ Beauty and the Geek, Southern Cross, Thursday, 8.30pm