Joel Creasey is ready for his close up on Seven’s Take Me Out
IN anyone else’s hands, a dating show where 30 flirty women brutally pick or f lick potential partners before a live studio audience could seem like a modern- day version of throwing Daniel into the lion’s den.
Messy and wrong for the times we’re living in, where social media is the town square and one wrong move in the game of gender politics ends in its victim being stripped bare.
But Joel Creasey is no ordinary lion tamer, using his razor sharp wit to cut through political correctness to get the crowd laughing.
Fronting Seven’s new shiny floor dating show Take Me Out, the 28-year- old Perth-born, Melbourne-based performer did what he does best – throwing caution to the wind, and a few cheeky one-liners, with hilarious results. As the openly gay comic tells
TV Guide: “I’m not someone who’s really into dating shows and I’m not your conventional dating show host. So I just approached it like a stand-up gig, in that I truly believe that funny is funny.
“Sometimes in this day and age, we overthink things … I mean, that said, I think some people could think things through a bit more … but this is just a really light-hearted comedy show at the end of the day.
“We know what we are and we’re not taking ourselves seriously. We even joke in the ads … there’s no rose ceremony, or impromptu weddings, we’re a comedy show and we’re here for a laugh.”
For those not familiar with the format, the show has little pretense but a few bells and whistles: 30 single women are presented with a single man they could potentially date.
Keep your light on and you’re still interested; if he turns them off, then it’s lights out.
With each match made, another woman arrives to take her chances; with three couples paired up and sent off to the Gold Coast each episode.
Being in the audience for one taping was a side- splitting eyeopener, with car- crash moments at every turn.
This is the Tinder generation on show and captures all the vanity and insanity of modern match-making.
For Creasey, the task of getting to know up to 50 women cast for the show wasn’t exactly in his wheelhouse, but became an exercise in speed- dating.
“It totally was … we had a day where they all came in, one by one and we sat down and had a chat. They were all lovely,” he enthuses.
From this viewer’s perspective that might be a little kind, with the fickleness of some women writ large; while the parade of overly-manscaped men sure to make The Bachelor Nick Cummins look even more like a wild man of Borneo.
Creasey finds a balance between playing wing man to both sexes, and a judge in the court of public opinion – coming down hard on some of the more vacuous or outrageous encounters; with humour his weapon of choice.
He expected Seven to curb his risqué brand of comedy, but flourishes with a free run at things. “I never got that talking to and I was so expecting it. I’d worked at Ten and SBS for ages and they know me, but I thought, ‘Oh Seven are going to do that whole … you’re a bit of a loose cannon’ … [but] they just let me run with it and I can’t ever remember getting reined in.”
The family timeslot is a surprise from Seven, but as Creasey explains: “Most of the innuendo … the naughty stuff … will go over kids’ heads, thank God.”
If it rates, he’s also hoping to push the boat out further – addressing early criticism the format was not open to same- sex pairings.
“The hope is that people will love it and we can do tonnes of episodes and mix it up like they’ve done overseas,” he says.
His work on Eurovision and an upcoming Netflix special (filmed in Montreal last July and due to air on the streaming service next year) has already introduced him to international audiences – finding a famous fan in Harry Potter author J. K Row ling.
Creasey’s rather blue handling of a stage crasher during SBS’ broadcast of the kitsch song contest – calling the intruder “an absolute c---head” – won over Rowling, who took to Twitter to bequeath him a Potter- esque “Order of Merlin, First Class.”
It was a major fan-boy moment and career highlight he’s still milking, he says. “My manager’s added it to my C.V, so I’m running with it,” he laughs.
TAKE ME OUT
7.30PM, MONDAY AND TUESDAY, SEVEN
Joel Creasey with Chrissie Swan, left, and Myf Warhurst.