Over the course of their life, a person might be fortunate enough to find romance with the perfect partner. But to reach that stage, the individual will most likely have to navigate the tricky world of dating. Alexa Moreno could certainly relate to that notion, as she took part in a special process in December 2018.
A resident of California, Moreno was a university student at that time, harboring lofty aspirations for the future. Indeed, the teenager showed a real interest in both marine biology and psychology. And alongside that, she was also looking for love before earning her diploma, which led to an interesting opportunity.
Towards the end of 2018, Moreno appeared in a YouTube video titled “10 vs 1.” The upload – which formed part of a wider series called Versus – is a throwback of sorts to some older shows such as The Dating Game. So with that in mind, the student took her position behind a white screen.
From there, ten men lined up to talk to Moreno on the other side, hoping to secure a date with her. By the end of the process, two potential matches remained. But then, the singleton opted for Joseph Haynes. However, no one could’ve predicted what happened next, as he then made a jaw-dropping revelation.
For many of us, romantic relationships will play a key role in our lives. But while some people are able to find love quite easily, there are others around who aren’t quite so lucky. And so on that note, those particular individuals might decide to give online dating a try.
Websites such as eHarmony, Match and Zoosk offer singletons the chance to meet people through their respective services. Given all that, those sites are very popular at the moment, with millions of users dropping in each month. Despite all the success stories, though, online dating hasn’t always been the answer.
Indeed, before the days of the internet people needed to look for love in person, which could prove quite challenging. But for those who found that process too difficult, another potential solution appeared in the mid-1960s. During that period, a popular television show emerged on small screens across the United States.
In December 1965 The Dating Game made its television debut on the ABC network. Fronted by the famed DJ Jim Lange, the show featured different singletons in each episode, hoping to score a date with a mystery partner. However, it was the program’s unique format that really helped it stand out.
At the start of the process, a man or woman would take a seat behind a screen, with three potential matches situated on the other side. After that, they would then ask the trio a series of questions over the course of the episode, getting to know them. From there, a big decision needed to be made.
With the trio still seated behind the screen, the singleton used the previous answers to inform their ultimate choice. They would eventually pick one of them to go on a date with after the show, leading to the removal of the partition. Over the course of almost a decade, The Dating Game was a mainstay on American television.
During that period, a number of recognizable celebrities featured on the program as well, albeit before they gained their fame. Indeed, stars such as Tom Selleck, Farah Fawcett and Lee Majors made appearances – but that’s not all. The likes of Burt Reynolds, Phil Hartman and Steve Martin also popped up on the show.
By the summer of 1973, The Dating Game was finally removed from ABC’s schedule. Yet that didn’t signal the end. It would go on to last for an additional year as a syndicated show, taking on the title The New Dating Game. In 1974, though, the program came to an apparent conclusion.
Yet just around four years later, the show was resurrected again, with Lange still hosting. And while that relaunch only lasted until 1980, The Dating Game was brought back twice more over the following period. It returned for a three-year stint in 1986, ahead of its final run in the 1990s.
At that point, The Dating Game eventually ended in 1999 – some three decades on from its debut. As for the show’s legacy, it influenced a couple of other small screen efforts outside of America. For instance, a program named Perfect Match was launched in Australia in 1984, following the same set-up.
Perfect Match went on to last for around five years, before it was brought back for a short stint in 2002. Meanwhile, the United Kingdom had its own version that hit the small screen back in the mid-1980s. The show was titled Blind Date and it proved to be a big success. Indeed, it apparently brought in just over 18 million viewers at one point.
Blind Date was a mainstay on British television for over 15 years, with the final episode airing in 2003. Since then, the program has made a comeback on a different network, returning in 2017. In addition to that, a number of other U.K. dating shows came to the fore as well to help fill the void.
Given the popularity of those previous efforts, a YouTube channel introduced a new series to the world in 2018. Known as Versus, the show has brought back certain elements from The Dating Game, but updated them for a modern audience. For example, the first episode is called “20 vs 1: Speed Dating 20 Guys.”
That upload has since earned close to 15 million views on YouTube, suggesting that the dating show format is still very popular. From there, the Jubilee channel continued to produce other videos for its Versus series, with the episodes racking up some impressive numbers. However, one of those efforts really stood out among the rest.
In December 2018 a new episode was released, titled “10 vs 1: Speed Dating 10 Guys Without Seeing Them.” Much like The Dating Game and Blind Date, the format of this newer show would see a single person sat behind a partition, with their potential suitors on the other side. In this instance, a teenager named Alexa Moreno took on the former role.
At the start of the episode, Moreno shares her thoughts to the camera before the ten men arrive. The college student says with a smile, “I’m nervous, if I’m being honest.” Following this admission, we cut to a shot of her sat behind the screen in the empty studio, while a graphic emerges to explain the process.
This graphic reads, “We asked Alexa to speed date ten potential matches and find the most compatible person… without being able to see them.” From here, Moreno is then asked if she’ll be able to gauge the personalities of the men without looking at them. According to the California native, this shouldn’t be a problem.
“I feel like I will, yes,” Moreno responds. “I’m pretty good about picking up inflections of like voices and everything. And I can tell if somebody’s being honest with me or not by their voice. So I feel like I’ll do really well with that.” Off the back of her answer, the video cuts to a shot of the ten hopefuls in a line.
At this point, the intricacies of the process come to light, as one of the men takes a seat next to the screen. When he’s in place, a voice from off camera tells the rest of them to put on a pair of earphones and listen to music. Once this is done, the speed date begins with round one.
The video then transitions to a montage, with Moreno asking each of the potential matches some simple questions about themselves. At the end of the round, she’s instructed to eliminate two of the men, ahead of the next stage. After the singleton picks out the unfortunate duo, round two kicks off.
From here, Moreno asks the remaining hopefuls about their “ideal date,” which leads to some intriguing answers. Indeed, one of the men, named Joseph Haynes, had a clear idea with his response. He says, “Laughter. I think laughter is really, really cool. I like to do like impressions and stuff like that.”
Following Haynes’ reply, Moreno is then asked to eliminate another two from the running, leading to the next round. Referred to as “The Dealbreaker,” the matches are questioned about what puts them off a potential partner. And once this stage is completed, the student has to whittle down the choices again.
Now, with just three men remaining, the fourth round begins. On the subject of their future goals, the trio all outline various hopes – but Haynes stands out once more. As he tells Moreno, “I’ve got a lot. So, I am a musician, an actor, but I’m also studying political science.”
Haynes’ ambitions don’t end there, though. He continues, “I want to be President of the United States, so obviously you know, being with somebody that’s like committed but also supportive and I can learn a lot from them, that really means a lot to me.” After this, the potential match throws the question back at Moreno.
“I’m leaning toward psychologist,” Moreno responds. “So I can help teens with mental disorders, and everything like that.” Haynes seems impressed, stating that her goal for the future is “super special.” Following this exchange, Moreno is then asked to eliminate one more choice. This leaves her with the final two.
Haynes is joined by one more potential match at this stage, with the pair asking Moreno a question of their own. Haynes queries what the “hardest thing” that she’s had to go through in her life was – leading to a candid admission. Indeed, the aspiring psychologist reveals that she suffered with depression during her time at school.
After this last round, the video cuts back to a shot of Moreno before she makes her choice. The college student eventually says, “I think I have a decision. Alright, so I’m gonna have to go with Joseph. That last question that he asked me, it shows me that he can actually get really deep when he needs to be.”
Off the back of this, Haynes and Moreno then meet face to face for the first time, with the latter liking what she sees. “I didn’t really envision you looking like anything, but I’m really happy [that] you’re cute!” she says. “And yeah, I hope this kinda goes somewhere I guess.” However, no one could have predicted what happened next.
Moreno’s excitement is quickly cut off by Haynes, who admits he already has a girlfriend. Unsurprisingly, the teenager is shocked by this revelation. From behind the camera, someone asks Haynes why he turned up. As it turns out, the political science seemingly student didn’t realize what the ultimate goal of the process was.
“Oh dang!” Haynes says once he realizes his mistake. “I told my girlfriend all about it and everything, she said it sounds like a cool social experiment!” With Moreno looking stunned, the video cuts back to her a few moments later, as she sits in her chair. Given what transpired, the singleton shares her immediate thoughts.
Moreno says, “I thought it was, like, a prank on me! I was like, ‘Okay,’ and then everyone else was just as surprised as me. And I was like, ‘Guess not!’ That is weird, because I totally went into this thinking that I was gonna end up with somebody who was single and looking.”
Moreno’s thoughts don’t end there, though. She adds, “I’m not hurt or anything, I’m just kind of confused as to why [Haynes] was here. I’m happy he has a girlfriend, I guess, because he’s actually a genuinely really cool person, and he had everything that I was looking for! So I hope that they’re really happy and everything.”
On that note, the episode comes to a bizarre end. Following everything that happened, the video has since earned over 10 million views on YouTube, alongside more than 220,000 likes. The clip also generated in excess of 31,000 comments from online users, many of which were incredibly supportive of Moreno.
“This video played with my feelings,” wrote one YouTube user in the comments section. “I was too happy that [Moreno] chose Joseph, and after I was so sad when he said he had a girlfriend!” Those feelings were certainly shared by a number of other people on the website, shocked by what they’d seen.
Following the episode’s upload, Moreno was contacted by Mail Online in January 2019 for an interview. Talking to the website, she touched upon the online reaction to the incident. “I never thought it was going to blow up the way it did, and it’s so surreal to me,” the teenager admitted.
Moreno continued, “On Twitter alone I’ve gained over 10,000 followers, it’s crazy. I’ve gotten hundreds of DMs from guys – and some girls even – asking to go on dates. It’s overwhelming.” As for Haynes, she added, “I don’t think Joseph lied. Rather, he just misunderstood what the video was about.”