By J.P. Anderson | August 8, 2016 | People
Famous for giving tough love to her wealthy-but-lovelorn clients, Patti Stanger—whose Bravo hit Millionaire Matchmaker has effortlessly moved to WE tv and transformed into Million Dollar Matchmaker—is no different in person than what you’d expect: Dynamic, direct, and straight-talking to the extreme, she’s as comfortable discussing porn and DILFs as she is love and romance. As Stanger cruised through Chicago recently to promote her move to WE tv (and her just-announced new show Love Inc.), she sat down for some real talk with Michigan Avenue.
What has made your show such a success?
PATTI STANGER: I tell people what most people would never say to their faces. I’m from Jersey, and we don’t pull any punches. I have 42 minutes to tell a story and fix up two people on an episode. I also think people want that VIP millionaire experience—I think there’s an aspiration to be them. But then you see how screwed up they are. Whether you’re a regular Joe or a millionaire, everybody has a tough time finding love.
What are you excited about for the new season?
PS: We’re really breaking [through] tough issues—psychological behavior, childhood issues, abandonment, all that stuff—so it’s super-healthy. We’re helping America find true love and fix themselves.
Any highlights you can share?
PS: My favorite episode is with Ashley Iaconetti from The Bachelor. She’s stuck in the friend zone like so many girls today, so I think a lot of people are going to identify—and then the minute I get her out of the friend zone and find her a hot guy, Jared [Haibon, of Bachelor in Paradise] starts blowing up her phone. I told her, “That’s going to happen the minute you check him off the list.” I told her to delete him from her phone. I was pretty severe.
What do you think about our app-centric dating world?
PS: I’m a fan; I’m on Bumble and Tinder. I think they’re great; I just wish there was more information, like were you divorced? Do you have kids? I met my ex-boyfriend on Plenty of Fish, so I think the technology’s going in the right direction. I just think we need to clean it up and make it a little more detailed.
What keeps you excited about making a match?
PS: The greatest joy I’ve ever had is making a match and [the couple] falling in love and inviting me to the wedding. There’s no greater high, even with sex or drugs, because you’ve helped two people come together.
What’s the key to a good online profile?
PS: You need to be sexy-flirty, but not overt. You can’t be corporate and lead with your resume—LinkedIn is not going to get you a date.
What’s your idea of the perfect man for yourself?
PS: Financially secure, and maybe successful—I’ve never dated a successful guy. I’m not greedy; I’m not looking for Mr. Private Plane. I like ’em 6’2”, athletic, in their 40s or maybe early 50s, divorced—once they’ve committed they can commit again. I’m a fan of DILFs, OK? Somebody who makes me laugh, who has a good sense of humor, and is a really good French kisser—because the art of French kissing has died on the vine. So many men don’t know how to kiss; they watch too much porn and think that’s the way we want to be made love to. It’s pathetic.
What is it about the Patti brand that people are drawn to?
PS: Love. I think everything that’s [an] aphrodisiac—the wine has aphrodisiac elements; it got 94 out of 100 points on Wine Spectator—or has some kind of romantic element to it. We’re trying to bring romance back. We’re so work-busy and so exhausted that we’ve forgotten how to love.
You’re developing a new matchmaking reality show Love Inc., about a Chicago family running a matchmaking service. What inspired that?
PS: Five years ago, right before I dated David, Lisa [Galos] fixed me up with someone. Lisa was a really great matchmaker, but we used to fight all the time, and I said, God, this is a reality show. What we didn’t know was that Lisa and her husband, Jim, were married,
opened this agency in Chicago, and their office manager was their best friend, Mickey. And she had an affair with Jim behind Lisa’s back. At the end of the day when they all divorced and got married to other people, they ended up staying a family. They are the kookiest—you could not write this. This is beyond any Housewives stuff.
Why do you think Chicago is a great city for singles?
PS: First of all, it’s the most beautiful, cleanest city in the world that I’ve seen. I think the people are the nicest people, and I think the men are super-handsome. It’s just sad that it’s cold. You only get three months of summer. At the end of the day, if it was summer 365 I’d move here. That tells you how much I love Chicago.
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