With an iPhone, Safari, and Tinder, you may catch the dating world's virus—catfish.
If you watch Catfish: The TV Show, you know that the show's hosts–Nev and Max–expose the men and women behind the fake profiles, seedy messages, and ill intent. However, once they're confronted by their victims, their stories soften their image. Usually, they catfish others to make themselves feel better about their weight gain, social anxiety, or loneliness.
MTV's program brings to light the alarming risk of online dating. Whether you meet a hot chick on Facebook or you match with the man of your dreams on Tinder, caution (and questions) is key. Otherwise, your beau may just be a lonely sexagenarian with seven cats.
While catfishes mirror stereotypes, there's a small portion of good-looking catfishes. Their self-esteem's shot, but their makeup's on point. Their profile picture might be Megan Fox, but at least they look like the girl next door. You're not with the woman of your dreams, yet your romance blossoms anyway.
Even though fairy-tale love rarely happens when catfished, a happily ever after still takes place. While marriage and children are unlikely, a catfish and their victim try dating, or at the very least, stay friends. Just look at the examples below. Here, you'll read about a few catfishes who are actually pretty. Aside from their outer appearance, they're beautiful on the inside too. That's why their partners felt such a strong connection, even if their love never lasted. Forget about The Notebook. Just go on Plenty of Fish.
15 Miss Teen USA Misleads Man
Would you date a woman who competed in a Miss Teen USA competition? Yes, duh!
Joe thought he and Kari Ann, a model, formed a tight bond. He loved her, and he wanted to meet her. However, Kari Ann kept pussy-footing around his pleas. Even though she said she cared for him, she made excuses any time he intended to visit her. Obviously, he asked for Nev and Max's help. They came to the rescue. After preliminary research and snooping, they realized Kari Ann was not a Miss Teen USA, but only a fictitious character which her "pal" Rose created.
While Rose lacked beauty pageant titles, she still looked good.
14 Nev And Max Meet Their Match
What happens when Catfish: The TV Show gets catfished?
Nev and Max flew to New York to meet Whitney, a young woman who had her sights set on Bre, a Californian stripper. In the beginning, Whitney expressed her issues with lying and how she thought Bre could be a catfish. Nev and Max took her accusations seriously, so they dug deeper into Whitney's history with Bre. However, instead of finding another fake profile, they found a secret that's much darker. Whitney and Bre already knew each other, and they were already in a relationship. They were broke, though. Nev and Max were their ticket. The men were pissed, but in the end, they agreed to pay for Whitney's flight.
She and Bre were a gorgeous couple after all.
13 A Love Triangle To End All Love Triangles
When you see your partner all lovey-dovey with someone else, your blood boils.
However, binge-watching Netflix movies and demolishing tubs of ice cream are your go-to coping mechanisms. You're upset, but you're still sane. A woman named Mhissy went in a different direction, though. She and an acquaintance, Jasmine, vied for the same man, and their competition soon dissolved when Jasmine met Mike online. They talked for a couple years, yet with Nev and Max by her side, Jasmine found out that her man was really a hot woman—Mhissy.
The saying's true; the hot individuals are always the crazy ones.
12 Two Girls, One Catfish
Not all catfishes are heartless.
During Catfish: The TV Show's first season, Sunny asked Nev and Max for their expertise. She loved a man named Jamison, yet he flaked on her always. Her heart sunk in the pit of her stomach. She believed he could be a catfish, which only made her worry more. Her bad anxiety only worsened when she met Jamison in person. Jamison was actually a teenage girl named Chelsea, a student who was bullied constantly. She escaped her reality through the Internet. However, after the show aired, she changed her ways. Now, she helps victims of bullies with her anti-bullying campaign "Win From Within."
Chelsea may not be a model like Jamison, but she's still just as beautiful.
11 Three's A Crowd...
Men dream of having two women, but their dream is much different than reality.
Dorion–a young man with a beautiful girlfriend–lived a double life. While he had a good relationship with his partner of seven months, Raffinee, he spent the past two years with another woman named Jeszica. However, their romance was strictly online. That's why Dorion asked for Nev and Max's help. He wanted to make sure that Jeszica was a real person, so he could begin his life with her and leave Raffinee. The pig's plans went awry, though. Jeszica was really a woman named Alexis, who created her persona out of loneliness and emptiness. Even though Alexis was pretty, Dorion cut ties with her.
He continued to stay with Raffinee.
10 Two Catfishes Catfish Each Other
"Congratulations, you played yourself." - DJ Khaled.
In an episode of Catfish: The TV Show, Nev and Max dealt with two catfishes—Rod and Ebony. Rod pretended to be KJ, the persona who talked to Ebony, a woman who said she was transgender. Each person thought they talked to the person of their dreams, yet they ended up in a twisted love affair. When the two finally met, Ebony saw not KJ but Rod. While Rod was excited to see Ebony, she soon revealed that she was born a woman who had an 11-year-old child.
While Ebony was the pretty woman in her pictures, Rod still wished she was transgender.
9 A Catfish Gets Bullied
The one time you'll feel bad for the catfish and not for her victim.
Tyreme fell in love with a woman named Tomorrow. He wanted to date her in real life and not just through phone, email, and Skype. He called Nev and Max, and the two men flew to Tyreme's state. Once the trio partnered together, they uncovered dirt on Tomorrow. Pics of her belonged to other women, and her phone number belonged to another woman as well. Tyreme was in pain, and his pain blossomed into anger when he met Tomorrow, whose real name was Letrease, a pretty woman with ugly insecurities. He lambasted her. His reaction was so crazy even Nev defended her.
Bullying's never okay.
8 When Reality Hits...
You read about seven catfishes who were actually pretty, but now, you'll read about the eight hard-hearted catfishes who steal profiles–like Caroline's–to appear pretty.
Caroline, an ordinary woman with hobbies and interests, was Mike's dream girl. She was the beautiful brunette who had a gorgeous smile and bubbly personality. However, the big problem in their relationship was Caroline's reluctance to meet Mike in person. Her many excuses finally forced Mike to enlist the services of Nev and Mike. After a couple days of detective work, the hosts contacted Caroline herself. She even spoke to Mike. Sadly, she was the victim of Heather, a woman who was obsessed with Mike. He was heartbroken, and Caroline was in shock.
Maybe the two can bond over their wild crazy experience?
7 Who's In More Denial? The Catfish Or Her Victim?
In one of the craziest shows to date, one man knew the identity of the catfish, yet he chose to ignore the obvious red flag anyway.
Ramon met his dream date, Paola, on Facebook. The two soon fell in love, and they took their relationship to the next level; they got engaged. Even though the pair had never met face to face, Ramon loved her enough to send her $2,000. He just wasted his money and time on a catfish, yet the mind-blowing part? Ramon actually knew the woman who was toying with his emotions. Her name was not Paola, but Loyda. Needless to say, Ramon's heart was crushed.
Paola probably felt just as bad too.
6 A Missing Third Eye
Don't let love blind your wisdom.
A Midwestern man named Mike met his girlfriend, Kristen, online. The pair fell in love quickly, and they even talked about marriage and children. However, the reason why they never furthered their relationship was because of Kristen's insecurity. One of her eyes was real but the other was made of glass. Her disability not only complicated her daily life, but her love life as well. Even though Mike accepted her imperfections, she still felt like a loser in life. Unfortunately, her self-esteem issues led to Mike's appearance on Catfish: The TV Show. He met Kristen, a woman who looked much different than the photos Mike saw.
He left a confused mess, wondering why his Kristen was really a catfish named Kristyn.
5 Left His Kids For A Catfish
People see Artis as a man who took his great life for granted.
He had a loving girlfriend and beautiful children, yet he threw his family away for a fake profile. He thought he and Jess were in love, and their relationship took priority over his other responsibilities. He wanted to be with her, and aside from his family, his problem was Jess' reluctance to meet him. She always made excuses, which dampened Artis' spirits. With Nev and Max's help, his spirits were rejuvenated. However, his hope only lasted days. The men discovered that Jess was not only a catfish, but a man named Justin, a guy hellbent on exposing cheaters.
Karma's an ugly bitch, Artis.
4 Photoshopping Her Appearance
Instead of using photos of hot celebrities or her best friend, Ashley used photos of herself. They were just Photoshopped to make her appear thin.
However, her online boyfriend, Mike, was also a catfish. Instead of altering his appearance, he went the traditional route. He created a fake persona online, which included photos of real men, of course. They seemed like a match made in heaven, since both were catfishes. Even though Ashley claimed she could care less about a man's outer appearance, actions speak louder than words. She ignored Mike completely, and if they talked, she was rude, snippy, and standoffish. Mike deserved better. Unfortunately, he never got the chance to find love again.
He passed away of a pulmonary embolism a month later.
3 An Innocent Woman Almost Murdered
Nev, Max, and the MTV crew are nowhere to be found in this catfish crime.
Brian Hile thought he was in a relationship with a beautiful blonde. He really cared for the bombshell, which he made evident by the money he wired. While Brian saw himself as her future husband, scams never crossed his mind. Unfortunately, he got caught in a scheme, which cost him thousands. Even though the scammers–located in South Africa–used the Californian's photos for their own personal gain, Brian thought his "girlfriend" was the one behind the mastermind plan. He planned to kill her; he bought duct tape and zip ties, not to mention a written list of what he'd do to her.
Thankfully, police reprimanded him a mile away from the unsuspecting woman's home.
2 Catfish Clarissa Kills
A 19-year-old named Brandon Wentzell committed suicide when his online girlfriend, Clarissa, flaked.
The lovebirds met on the dating app Plenty of Fish, and they became entangled in a sweet romance. However, according to Clarissa, she always flaked on dates because of her former boyfriend's constant harassment. When Clarissa told Brandon that she wouldn't be able to see him, he grabbed a bottle of vodka and a handful of pills. He killed himself. His mother was in hysterics, so she called Clarissa herself. Instead of coming clean or apologizing, she told Brandon's mom that she was Clarissa's mom, and that Clarissa committed suicide as well.
Clarissa's one cold-hearted catfish.
1 Sports Star Grieves Over A Fake Profile
Linebacker for the New Orleans Saints falls prey to the dangers of online dating.
One man catfished football player Manti Te'o. He pretended to be a brunette beauty, a woman Manti loved. Unfortunately, she never existed, at least in his life. Her profile was controlled by a man who suffered unbelievable trauma as a child. He blamed childhood s*xual abuse on his actions, but no explanation could calm Manti. After all, the catfish duped the famous player into thinking his "girlfriend" killed herself. Even though the suicide never happened, the whole ordeal messed with Manti's head.
The profile was fake, but his love was real.