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Tara Ariano

S03.E06: John & Kelsey

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They should have blurred out "Kelsey's" face and altered his voice to deny him the thing he wanted most--notoriety.

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I would have laughed if Adam, Iceland girl, and John had orchestrated this entire thing.  But Adam seemed really bummed out that he didn't get as much attention as he was hoping for.

Edited by Spencer Hastings

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The only person In this whole thing that didn't seem shady was Ellie. The guys were both off somehow.

Edited by Pixel
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So basically this was all about one guy keeping all the other guys away from the girl he wanted & establishing his territory. I guess Ellie should be glad he didn't want to meet up & pee on her. I don't know how she could take him back, he catfished her by pretending to be her good friend. I bet Ellie & "Kelsey" talked about Adam all the time, between that & the OK Cupid account he got her to open, this guy really scammed her.

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I didn't understand how John was selling the idea that he was an IT guy who knew how to verify info, but he didn't do it because he didn't want to be a suspicious type... yet somehow he thinks having MTV do the research and out it all on TV is less of a violation? WTF?

 

One thing about the show that's comforting is that really it seems like all you need to do to stay out of trouble is take basic precautions like don't get seriously involved with anyone who won't communicate with you directly, verify facts (a truthful person shouldn't object to that, and should understand why you would want to do it, given the number of liars and schemers floating around), don't wait too long to meet in person, don't gloss over inconsistencies and red flags. Basically, don't live in a fantasy world.

 

I wonder how old Ellie really is. that's the one thing that made me the most nervous-- she didn't seem shady, but she seemed super-young.

 

It seems like previous seasons had more garden variety lonely people and this one is full of more really creepy stuff. But I only watched sporadically before, so maybe all the seasons have been like this and I just missed it by not watching enough episodes before.

Edited by possibilities
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John looked like a nerdy Tom Brady. I guess his anxiety and awkwardness was real because he still doesn't have a girl in his own town. There's no reason why a cute, smart guy can't get that. And what happened to San Diego? Of course I think everyone was hoping he'd end up in the Faroe Islands.

How did fugly Adam clean up so well and not look too bad? He was giving off vibes of "loner school shooter!", but then he just seemed sad and uncomfortable with himself. Ellie is really screwed if she's still hanging onto him.

I think I have a crush on Max. He always seems so entertained by the whole thing. And I loved, "Nothing says love like showing up with Nev Schulman!"!

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The moment I heard body dysmorphic disorder, alarm bells went off. So "Kelsey" has this, can't video chat because of her insecurities, but sends bathing suit pics? There was something weird about this whole thing, from the chat room where they discuss psychology (do people actually do this?), to the awkward meeting at that strange internet cafe/casino, to John's not wanting to check Kelsey out because that would be snooping. Really dude? 

 

And for the love of God, guys, do not send dick pics to girls, period. Women don't think it's a turn on, believe me. 

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How did fugly Adam clean up so well and not look too bad? He was giving off vibes of "loner school shooter!", but then he just seemed sad and uncomfortable with himself. Ellie is really screwed if she's still hanging onto him.

I think I have a crush on Max. He always seems so entertained by the whole thing. And I loved, "Nothing says love like showing up with Nev Schulman!"!

 

I think Skype-quality video chatting is Adam's best friend.  Whaddya wanna bet Proactive was on the phone with this assmunch 5 minutes after the episode aired?  And this episode must have been filmed a long time ago:  Those Internet casinos in Florida were all shut down about a year ago. 

 

So...let me see if I get this:  Adam was basically 'cockblocking' via Kelsey?  Given his lack of social skills, his freakish appearance, and that his idea of earning a living involves scamming old people hangouts, I guess I can see why he couldn't get a girl IRL.  I gathered John had some serious social anxiety issues:  And I wonder if he hadn't had something previously that involved a legal issue with cyberstalking or something:  There's NO reason an IT guy wouldn't have been able to spend 5 minutes doing that.

 

As soon as Ellie said she'd never video-chatted with Adam, I was all 'Kelsey and Adam are the same person!'  Although I thought it would end up being some older person being creepy, rather than a maladjusted, acne-riddled loser.  And the only reason I can assume Ellie is still talking to Adam is scoping for potential free trip to US/green card? 

 

Finally, I'm rather glad to see Nev and Max getting more irritated with their subjects' antics:  First, Nev and the phone toss, and now Max throwing shit and walking out made me LOL.  Is it wrong I want the season finale to go all Rambo and have them yell, rip their shirts open, and start pounding the catfisher?

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As soon as Ellie said she'd never video-chatted with Adam, I was all 'Kelsey and Adam are the same person!'  Although I thought it would end up being some older person being creepy, rather than a maladjusted, acne-riddled loser.

I thought this as well, but I thought it would be an overweight girl with issues at the end of the line.

 

I laughed at Nev peering through the windows at the internet casino and his "I think there is gambling in there." Also, Nev's reaction to John saying he sent a dick pic. 

 

Ellie you can do WAY better than Adam.

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And for the love of God, guys, do not send dick pics to girls, period. Women don't think it's a turn on, believe me.

I had something in my online dating profile that said "if you do this, I will block you." It's not sexy. Stop it, dudes. Don't offer unless asked.

WTF is wrong with Ellie that she stays with this creepy unattractive troll who catfished her? And who so clearly just wanted to be on TV? I did love that Max and Nev just straight up tattled on him though.

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So basically this was all about one guy keeping all the other guys away from the girl he wanted & establishing his territory.

Not really. I think the producer wasn't satisfied with Adam turning out to be an immature loser just pranking guys when he had nothing else to do, and John taking the reveal in stride, so he cooked up something involving Ellie. It looked like Nev was feeding the story to Adam and to Ellie the group was just a bunch of folks to chat with while living in the middle of nowhere so she didn't really care. I don't recall if it was Max or Nev who said they had enough footage heading out of their initial meeting with Adam, but he was right. I would have rather seen more hotel room filler than them force a formulaic ending. Somebody needs to fire that producer because he's obviously not on the same page as those who decided to mix things up to keep the show from going stale.

 

 

And I wonder if he hadn't had something previously that involved a legal issue with cyberstalking or something:  There's NO reason an IT guy wouldn't have been able to spend 5 minutes doing that.

There are tons of very low skilled "IT guys", not capable of doing anything beyond the level of unpacking a PC and getting it to boot up or following a troubleshooting checklist.

 

 

And for the love of God, guys, do not send dick pics to girls, period. Women don't think it's a turn on, believe me.

According to a syndicated sex/relationship advice column, some are interested, but you should never ever do it unless/until asked. At least he was smart enough not to include his face.

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When they walked into that super shady "cafe", I was expecting Kelsey to be some middle aged creep. The fact that it ended up being some pockmarked weirdo didn't surprise me too much. Really, I would have been more surprised had it actually been the girl in the pictures. Max saying "nothing says I love you like showing up at their door with Nev Schulman" just made the episode for me. 

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Max is hot.  That being said, this season of Catfish is not so good, imo.  How John did not loose it when he found out Adam created the Kelsey profile is beyond me.  He stayed almost too calm.  Adam seemed deranged.  Very strange episode.  Again, Max is hot.  LOL

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I hope Ellie watches this episode and sees how weirdly Adam acted and drops his ass (if they are still indeed dating.) I do enjoy that Adam and that creeper clapping guy from last season think they're brilliant masterminds but just come across as sad and pathetic.

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I can understand long distance relationships with someone you've had contact with and make plans to continue having contact with, but I will never understand how someone can consider someone they've never met their girlfriend/boyfriend, or that they are dating.  I get that you have these great conversations and they might be your intellectual other half, but it's just talk. There's so much more to a romantic relationship than that - physical chemistry, social interaction (in person).  I just don't get how you can get so hung up on someone you've never met that you close yourself off to opportunities right in front of your face.  Then again, both of the guys on this episode were the type that you'd really have to get to know before you'd get past the surface creep factor. Even John, the "hero" of our story, seemed creepy and off.

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And this episode must have been filmed a long time ago:  Those Internet casinos in Florida were all shut down about a year ago.

From what I was able to google, you can still have those internet cafes as long you operate them the right way, but that just makes it tougher for the cops to find and do something about the ones that were banned. I saw a news report saying that two dozen operating illegally were busted in a sweep at the beginning of this April, which would have been between the time of filming and the "two months later" followup saying that Adam wasn't working at that "job" any more. I'm estimating they filmed this in late February or March, based on the weather and date information in a couple of other episodes this season.

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No sympathy for John, not.at.all.  Sending dick pics is stupid enough, but to someone you've never met? He is, as Adam said, a fool.

 

Never heard of the Faroe Islands before so I learned something new today. Who knew Catfish was educational!

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Finally, I'm rather glad to see Nev and Max getting more irritated with their subjects' antics:  First, Nev and the phone toss, and now Max throwing shit and walking out made me LOL.  Is it wrong I want the season finale to go all Rambo and have them yell, rip their shirts open, and start pounding the catfisher?

 

 

 

 

         Oh, please let this be the finale!

Edited by Soobs
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It was pretty obvious that it would be Adam, but I still enjoyed it. Loved it when his face fell when nobody took him seriously as the king of the catfish. I also enjoyed John trying to hide his smirk while he watched Adam attempt to rationalize his behavior to Ellie via video chat. John was the creepier one, really, with his admitting to the fact that he'd semi-stalked people before and his talk of channeling his anger. I got the impression that he's the kind of guy who would never blow up and yell at you, but one night you'd wake up to find him calmly standing over your bed, holding a butcher knife.

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And for the love of God, guys, do not send dick pics to girls, period. Women don't think it's a turn on, believe me. 

 

I'm convinced that somewhere in the genetic code of every man is the "dick pick" gene.  Its something genetic that makes men think that every woman just wants to see a picture of his random penis, no matter how small, no matter how hairy, no matter how truly unimpressive it is.  Its almost like they can't help themselves.

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John has the same baldness potential as Prince William. The beanie really helps him. I thought he was hot on the video chat and was really disapointed seing him "IRL". 

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John has the same baldness potential as Prince William. The beanie really helps him. I thought he was hot on the video chat and was really disapointed seing him "IRL". 

Yeah, he needs to figure out a new hairstyle or maybe think about going really short.  I felt like there may have actually been a bald spot in the back.

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I liked this episode because I come from the time of true "chatting" and not the whole "random Facebook hookup".

 

I knew Kelsey was a guy from the very beginning.  I don't know HOW, but the whole "body dysmorphic disorder" thing tipped me off.  What a PERFECT excuse not to video chat....but someone with the disorder wouldn't be sharing bikini photos (you're not THAT clever, Kelsey!)

 

 

If you have the patience to hang out in a business center/casino and learn a pattern, you, too, could earn a princely $60 a day.

Yes and if you listened closely, "Kelsey" said that he felt he made "good" money.   That's 300 bucks a WEEK.  Define "GOOD"?

 

I thought John was genuine.  I know chat culture and as difficult it may be to understand, there are some really deep, smart people who chat and get very emotionally involved with each other.   

 

OH---and as for John being in "IT" for 10 years and being 27 years old.  Yeah....don't know who gets into "IT" at 17, but I think he was probably working at Geek Squad.  Chatting on Skype?  My guess is that he's doesn't have the ability to check out anyone beyond what he did (entering the photos into TinEye or whatever site he used)....

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While I realize Catfish probably was trying to portray John as the victim here, holy christ on a crutch...Watching his odd mannerisms and reactions, all I could think of was that this oddball of a loner seemed only about 5 degrees of separation from being another Eliot Rodger.  *shudder*

 

I did love the part where Adam "thanked" John for sending him that dick pic and how it took him forever to finally get it off of his hard drive.  So much for unsolicited peen shots, guys.  Unless we ladies ask for it, we really DON'T want one.  Sending them unsolicited is just all sorts of inappropriate.

 

I think Ellie seemed very young and probably didn't have a whole lot of life experience.  Maybe she took all of Adam's shenanigans as "proof" of how much he really loved her and the lengths he was willing to go to "prove" his love for her.  Yeah, hopefully she'll outgrow that phase if that's the case.  I can almost understand overlooking the creation of a woman puppet page to distract the guys from her...But to use that same page to extract information from her so that he could mold himself to be whatever she wanted?  Total creeper territory.

 

Yet still not as creepy as the vibe I got off of John.  Again, *shudder*

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John has the same baldness potential as Prince William. The beanie really helps him. I thought he was hot on the video chat and was really disapointed seing him "IRL".

 

I had the same reaction! And similarly with the video chat with Adam at the end; the new haircut and bad picture quality actually made him look much better than IRL. It reinforced to me how easy it can be to make yourself look 50% more attractive online vs IRL. 

 

This whole scenario just felt very strange. Adam was very flippant about the consequences of his catfishing and I would not be surprised if he was still doing it. Absolutely don't understand why Ellie is still with him. That said, the way he smiled when he first saw Ellie on video-chat? Those feelings were genuine. 

 

There were so many priceless facial expressions on this ep though... that kept me sniggering to myself, haha. 

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. John was the creepier one, really, with his admitting to the fact that he'd semi-stalked people before and his talk of channeling his anger. 

There's  a reason why all three of them spent so much time in an online chatroom to discuss "psychology."  Maybe it was literally a support group/chatroom for people with limited social skills?

 

Also, catfishing the other guy to keep him away from "your" girl - that's just like that bitchy girl in Atlanta who catfished her "friend" to keep her away from their shared boyfriend - the one who gave the other girl a rose.

Edited by ratgirlagogo
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I think Nev said it was a group for people with anxiety. It actually makes some sense, but at the same time is also a place ripe for exploitation by someone looking to make an excuse about why they won't meet or show themselves over a live video or audio method.

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I didn't think John was strange, but Adam scared me.  He created a profile to get to know Elle, so he, Adam could be what she wanted in a man.  Strange.

 

I didn't pay attention to John's mannerisms.  To me, people's mannerisms aren't that important, some people aren't comfortable on camera, some people aren't comfortable in front of others, that doesn't make them psycho loner killers.

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Yeah, I liked John. He is socially awkward and probably easily duped because it's hard for him to meet people due to the anxiety and awkwardness. I wasn't sure if the dick pic was unsolicited or not. Sounds like Adam was leading him on so much that a guy would jump there. Basically I found them all sad .. even Adam. Surely he's not well to be doing all that crazy shit, and I'm wondering how much trouble he's in in LA now.

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This was amazing.  I squawked so loud I scared the dog, first at the dick pick (and Nev, pricelessly, repeating the phrase) and then when Max dropped the camera.  I love that the two of them are losing patience with the catfish they're encountering.  All the rest of us lost that patience after, like, the fourth episode of the first season.

 

I felt like some of John's mannerisms were affected - like the Mr. Burns-style steepling of the fingers while discussing "channeling" his anger - but he also struck me as a garden-variety engineer/geek personality type who spends a lot of time in his own head and is slightly uncomfortable outside it.  Adam was just...what?  I think that his true personality was portrayed more accurately at the first meeting, that he wanted to be this puppetmaster, and that he was cockblocking John.  I don't think there was actual remorse there, I think he was just trying to save his bacon with Ellie.  Who is young and lives on a remote island in the middle of nowhere and has the people-savviness to show it...

 

Oh!!  And how dumb was it for Adam to just blather on about how he's scamming the gambling parlor?  I feel like there are ramifications, legal or mafia-related, that could come about from that.  No sense of self-preservation, that lad.

 

This was a weird thing all around.  Can you imagine being Adam's couchsurfing host and seeing this episode?  And why would John even bother to maintain any kind of relationship with Adam?  I guess it helps undermine Adam's goal of being a Big Bad Nefarious Villian Who Hurt Someone's Feelings, but doesn't John have better things to do?

 

This was a meaty episode and I'm really enjoying this season.  Agreed that the "you're too smart for this" trope needs to go, though.  Can we move it to "get a real hobby"?

Edited by Luminosa
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I knew Kelsey was a guy from the very beginning.  I don't know HOW, but the whole "body dysmorphic disorder" thing tipped me off.  What a PERFECT excuse not to video chat....but someone with the disorder wouldn't be sharing bikini photos (you're not THAT clever, Kelsey!)

That's exactly what Nev said when he saw the pictures, he got suspicious of the body dysmorphic stuff too.

Edited by GaT

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I doubt the Mafia would go after a little punk who's scamming the sum of $60 a day.

Its a down economy, every penny counts :)

 

And Adam just has one of those unfortunate mugs that is begging for a punch.

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John looked like a nerdy Tom Brady. I guess his anxiety and awkwardness was real because he still doesn't have a girl in his own town. There's no reason why a cute, smart guy can't get that. And what happened to San Diego? Of course I think everyone was hoping he'd end up in the Faroe Islands.

How did fugly Adam clean up so well and not look too bad? He was giving off vibes of "loner school shooter!", but then he just seemed sad and uncomfortable with himself. Ellie is really screwed if she's still hanging onto him.

I think I have a crush on Max. He always seems so entertained by the whole thing. And I loved, "Nothing says love like showing up with Nev Schulman!"!

 

No! lol.

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The Adam that appeared at the cafe is the internet guy you hope to never meet. (looks wise). 

It was interesting that he cleaned himself up for the next day and didn't look like such a creepster.  And it's amazing what a little blurry video can do for someone cause he looked completely different in the update video. 

 

I used to know a guy online that reminded me of John.  Total nerd computer guy and looked downright awkward but in the right clothes and hat he looked really nice. 

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And how dumb was it for Adam to just blather on about how he's scamming the gambling parlor?

He wasn't; he was getting an edge over the other players in collecting what the place had to pay out. It was like knowing that a slot machine would only pay out once enough quarters had been played, then watching and muscling in to be the one to play that last quarter.

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Just watched this... to me, Adam came across as sort of psychopathic, to say the least. Making a fake account to tell someone to make a dating profile JUST so you can stalk it to seduce them? The way he positively grinned about screwing with Adam and the jackpot scam? Yeah. I think he saw the social anxiety group as a place to find easy prey to screw with and con. Yeesh, I feel like I need to take a shower.

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I have to confess. Most of the time I do not understand how their conclusion were reached and exactly how the person was determined to have been catfished. 

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If one person is lying to the other, with fake pics (which...aren't there always fake pics?) or false info, then they are catfishing someone.  I wish we could get more episodes where it really ISNT a catfish (I still don't believe it was t-candle or whatever his name was and not his brother in that episode). 

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Not to wear the subject out but naming it cat fishing is kind of weird. A catfish lies at the bottom of the lake and waits for the bait to come to them. They may or may not bite. They are only aggressive once out of the water where they might sting you with their stingers.

So, where I get lost is when. right after they finish reading how the person never met their love interest or whatever the problem was, is what they do to find the catfisher. How do you do a reverse look up of a photo? And I don't get what the conversation is about until they actually get to the person who catfished. This is what it sounds like to me:

 

"Lets take a look at these pictures and blah, bluh, blah, blah, blah, un huh, whoa, yep, so then this must be duhm, um, blah, blah...." 

Seriously get lost in the middle.

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So, where I get lost is when. right after they finish reading how the person never met their love interest or whatever the problem was, is what they do to find the catfisher. How do you do a reverse look up of a photo?

One way is to go to google.com, click "images" in the top corner, and give it the photo to search for. I think I saw Nev using a different search site in at least one episode this season (don't recall which one).

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Not to wear the subject out but naming it cat fishing is kind of weird. A catfish lies at the bottom of the lake and waits for the bait to come to them. They may or may not bite. They are only aggressive once out of the water where they might sting you with their stingers.

 

From Wikipedia, so you know it must be true:  "They used to tank cod from Alaska all the way to China. They'd keep them in vats in the ship. By the time the codfish reached China, the flesh was mush and tasteless. So this guy came up with the idea that if you put these cods in these big vats, put some catfish in with them and the catfish will keep the cod agile. And there are those people who are catfish in life. And they keep you on your toes. They keep you guessing, they keep you thinking, they keep you fresh. And I thank God for the catfish because we would be droll, boring and dull if we didn't have somebody nipping at our fin." —from Catfish

Why the term "catfish" is used to describe people who portray someone else online

 

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It's definitely a stretch which is why I refuse to use it as a noun or a verb in this context! "Liar" was always a perfectly good word for what they do!

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I think it's a poor analogy when the "codfish" is relatively clueless, because they're not being kept fresh. It may have applied to Nev or the subjects this season who were smart enough to look into things themselves.

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That's why I always hated that line from the movie. It makes it sound like the catfisher (or "liar") is doing their victim some kind af favor.

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