Will Catfish Prove Kim And Matt Haven't Wasted Five Years On Each Other?

Kim's been holding out for Matt to the detriment of any other relationships. Will Catfish validate her choices?

The Client

Kim, age 20, of Sacramento. (According to her ex-boyfriend Joseph, Kim is too shy to have written the show herself, so he's done it for her. "Too shy to send an email?" Oh, just wait until you see this awkward weirdo.)

The Beloved

Matt, age 21, of Florida.

The Clues

In the five years Kim's been texting Matt and talking to him on the phone -- starting when she was fifteen and he randomly sent her a Facebook message saying she was beautiful -- he's never sent her one photo of himself; however, that doesn't seem to have dampened Kim's ardor because these two sext.

Matt and Kim planned two in-person meetings when they both lived in Sacramento, but he bailed on both. Nevertheless, she has taken a semester off college so that she can investigate schools in Florida with the intention of moving there to be with Matt. Great idea.

The Excuses

None offered, really; Kim seems ready to overlook a lot of bullshit because she and Matt have bonded over their rough childhoods and she values his advice. How rough was her childhood? Well, she says she spent some time in juvenile hall.

Nice try, Max, but we all see you trying not to crack up.

There's also the fact that while Kim doesn't know what Matt looks like and therefore doesn't have any expectations he might possibly disappoint, she does say that she'd spurn him if he had "abs" -- which Nev and Max think is a joke until she explains that she likes a guy with a little fluff; Nev is too skinny for her, but Max's figure is acceptable to her. Max is not remotely chubby, which just makes me wonder how cadaverous Nev actually is minus the ten pounds the camera adds.

The Investigation

This won't take long. They search Matt's phone number; it's registered to someone with his name. His Facebook page shows that his posts originate in Florida, and Nev messages some of the people who've recently commented on them to see if they know Matt IRL. While they wait, they search the name in his Facebook profile URL -- Reaper [Redacted] -- and find there's a Twitter account with that name, and with the same dumb puppy-with-a-rifle cartoon that serves as Matt's Facebook profile pic.

(Again, as with the Cowboys memes last week, I must hope this is some farkakte sketch they made a PA do to approximate whatever real image the show couldn't clear.) Matt's even tweeted a mirror selfie, not that it shows much.

Given that Matt's face, from the bridge of his nose up, doesn't seem to be hideously disfigured, Nev and Max can't figure out why he's refused to share any photos with Kim. They then find that his default internet alias belongs to a profile on Plenty Of Fish, and assume that means he'll have to have put a pic there.

And they're right! Once again, they enthuse about his "totally fine" and "normal" appearance, and it's not that they're wrong, but pretty much all this image tells us that the other one didn't is that he has both a nose and a mouth. Clearly what they want to exclaim about is that he's not fat, but they............can't. Anyway, they now have a new theory about why he's been cagey with Kim, which is that "he's dating online," and indeed, I'm not aware of other reasons people have profiles on internet dating platforms.

Then they get a call from Crystal, one of Matt's Facebook friends. While she doesn't recall Matt ever talking about his friend Kim in California, she does confirm that she met him a few years ago; thinks he's been "on and off" with a woman in Kissimmee, where he appears to live; and remembers him living in Sacramento for a while. She suggests that they talk to Matt's brother Nick, who lived with him, and texts them his phone number. Way to be mindful of Nick's privacy, Crystal. She doesn't just text a phone number, though; she also provides a photo of herself that features Matt's entire face.

This Sally from Nightmare Before Christmas-ass-looking try-hard. But we're not here to talk about Crystal's clichéd goth posturing: this is about Matt, who's been upgraded by our hosts from "normal" and "fine" to "a babe." They're all the more psyched about getting this "emo hair" together with Kim's two dumb lip piercings and immediately call Nick. He's never heard of Kim either, but unlike Crystal, he doesn't know of any other current entanglements either. However, he thinks it's out of character for Matt to be "dating" Kim and not trying hard to meet up with her. Thanks for providing that promo-ready clip, Nick!

The Presentation Of Findings

Kim demonstrates zero recognition of Matt's Twitter feed, so, as usual, her lack of curiosity is a crucial factor in her current predicament. Here's her reaction to her first glimpse at Matt's weird 45-degree-rotated sunglasses pic from Plenty Of Fish.

After rocking back and forth for twenty minutes, Kim finally manages, "I'm not sure if I should even make a comment." She then goes full Cousin It.

Nev is basically like, I don't know how to deal with you when you retreat into your hair palace, but she doesn't want to tell him and steps out of the room. Nev:

Seriously though. He finally follows Kim out to the yard, where she's sitting in a hammock with her head on her knees.

Evidence Of Airbnb The First, btw. Kim says she suddenly started feeling "warm" and "overwhelmed" -- in a good way: this is going so much better than she expected, and now she's speechless. Uh, maybe wait until you've seen all the evidence before you have a joy meltdown, Kim. She gets herself back up and returns to the computer, and when they tell her what Crystal told them about Matt's maybe-girlfriend, she doesn't look any different than when she was "overwhelmed" with happiness after her first glimpse of Matt.

And when they tell her that NICK said he DOESN'T think Matt has a girlfriend, she just shakes her head and hides in her hair again, and this is what makes her cry; before long, she's up and out of the room again. This time, Nev finds her on the bathroom floor, where she mumbles, "If he's real, why is he hiding?" MAYBE HE THINKS YOU'RE WEIRD, LIKE WE ALL DO.

When Kim's recovered what passes for her composure, she states that she does still want to meet Matt, but that she's scared of flying, "so unless there's a different way to get there...." Hey lady, if you want to see the country by train, apply for an Amtrak residency like everyone else did; MTV hasn't got time for that shit! Nev suggests that they see if MATT will fly out to THEM, and no sooner has he stepped outside to call Matt does he remember that he has another, much better shot of Matt to show her. "What do you think of him?" asks Max, as Kim peers at the photo. "Um, well, he's not ugly," Kim replies, in what I hope is her (weird) attempt at charming understatement. "I think he's stunning, to be honest," Nev overshares.

Nev then calls Matt, and guess what.

WHAT are the ODDS?! Matt pleads "brother just got out of surgery" and "I just got a new job," while inside, Max comments to Kim that he can't figure out why Matt isn't sending photos or trying to meet Kim: "Something is up." Kim:


Outside, Nev sweetens his offer of imposing on Matt a meeting with the woman he's been avoiding for five years by adding that if Matt wants it to happen, he's going to have to be the one to travel. "I'll meet her," says Matt after a few seconds. OKEY DOKEY THEN.

Somewhere around here is when Nev checks in with Mrs. Nev, who's even more useless than usual. Also, we briefly see Nev's mother, who I'm pretty sure is my age.

This is violence.

The Pre-Confrontation

The next day, Nev and Max call Kim to let her know they're on their way to the Airbnb to wait with her for Matt's flight to land, and she's all, sounds great, see you soon, in a very chirpy voice that doesn't betray that anything's amiss, which is why they're surprised when they arrive to see an apparently unfamiliar car in the driveway and a male butt getting out. But it's not Matt: it's Joe, Kim's ex. Kim called him the night before in a panic, because there were "some things" she hadn't told Max and Nev; Kim needs to tell them herself, but she asked Joe to be there to support her. AS IF CUED BY A PRODUCER INSIDE, Kim opens the side door and emerges...

It may be the case that Kim fell in love (or whatever) with Matt while she was still dating Joe in meatspace, but she apparently wasn't so devoted that she didn't...have a baby with Joe. This is Norma, and Kim's never told Matt about her because he had previously made it known that he doesn't like or want to have kids. In that case, Max would like to know what Joe thinks about Matt, his daughter's potential stepfather. I mean, I imagine he probably doesn't think Matt IS his daughter's potential stepfather, given his stated views on the matter? Before Joe can answer that, though, Nev jumps in to guess that Joe probably doesn't want Kim to move to Florida with their child, and Joe agrees that he doesn't. "But you know that that's what they've been talking about, right?" Max asks. Joe:

WOW, KIM FUCKING SUCKS. I'll give her some benefit of the doubt and guess that this stupid smile is an involuntary reaction to her embarrassment and not an indication that she thinks this gap in her reports to Joe is cute, but that doesn't excuse the fact that this is the kind of decision you KIND OF have to run by your child's co-parent before you start giving it serious consideration. What a dick. Max recaps (leave it to the professionals), "Just add that to the list: this guy won't send you a picture, doesn't like kids, doesn't want to have kids -- this is turning into more and more of a bad idea, Kim." She doesn't disagree -- because she can't -- but stupidly smiles through her stupid silence, like a stupid idiot. Joe takes Norma from her arms so that Kim can have her big summit with Matt and the crew. I'm at least glad that Joe and Kim are no longer together because she clearly doesn't deserve him.

Nev, Kim, and Max sit down so that she can tell them the rest of the shit she conveniently skipped the day before.

Evidence Of Airbnb The Second: twenty-year-old college students don't have this much outside decor, sorry. Anyway, Kim says that although she was "talking to him" while pregnant, she "didn't get big until the very end," and though the obvious next question is what sorts of photos was she sending him at that time if this is a salient detail, no one asks. She goes on to say that one of their scheduled meetings was scuttled not by Matt but by Kim -- or, rather, by Norma, because Kim went into labour. Max reiterates that Matt is on the record as not wanting kids, so does Kim think he could be a good father to Norma? "I hope so?" says Kim. "I mean, I've never met him, so I don't know exactly how he is in person." GREAT ANSWER, MOM. Like, true, she hasn't met him, but she's been talking to him for FIVE YEARS. She should know -- and if she doesn't have at least as much doubt as we all now do, she is really being reckless about her child's happiness. And yet here she is in the car on the way to meet Matt.

TEE HEE HEE!!! I really hate Kim, you guys.

The Confrontation

In a park, where nothing good ever happens...

...Matt turns out to be Matt, and Kim is psyched but still extremely awkward.

She can barely look at him as she talks, and Matt kind of looks like he regrets everything he's done to keep a relationship with this freak going as long as he has.

Kim asks if Matt has a girlfriend, and he's very blasé as he simply says, "No." He wouldn't send photos because he doesn't "like being in front of the camera." I mean, neither does Kim -- CLEARLY -- but she managed. Kim is too flustered to continue, so Nev asks why Matt never sent just one little video to let Kim know he was legit. Matt calls himself "a secretive person, for the most part" -- a response of which Nev and Max seem suspicious.

But Max says that the bigger question is whether Matt cares for Kim; he says he does. Max: "In what way?" Matt:

"It would suck if something happened to her," Matt says, which is indeed the verbal equivalent of that face he just made. So: as a friend who's willing to sext, got it. "That's one way to answer the question," Max sniffs. What do you want him to say about someone who's so uncomfortable and strange SHE LITERALLY CANNOT STAND UP RIGHT NOW?

Plus she hasn't even told him about Norma yet, so that's already more than she deserves anyway. "I mean, I care about you," Matt adds, addressing Kim despite how difficult she's making it. He reminds her of times they were there for one another in times of bereavement.

Kim then seems to realize the conversation has come to the point where she has to come clean about her motherhood and asks if she can take off for a second, but Max and Nev refuse to play along, and Matt cracks, "The hysterics are nice." A few yards away, Kim sits down, forcing Max to come over and psych her up for the big reveal, reminding her that Matt is the guy she thought she was, and that he's cute, though he allows, "He's skinny, though." "I know," Kim moans. "I can fatten him up." I'm not sure he's going to give you the chance, but sure, live in hope.

Kim stands up, returns, KNEELS DOWN AGAIN like she's getting ready to pass a fucking kindney stone right here in the park (which would, admittedly, be the worst thing that had happened in a park in the series thus far). "So do you still not like children?" Kim finally asks. Matt:

HAAAAAAHAHAHAHA. What he actually says: "I mean-- If he-- Why." hahahahahaha. Kim takes 500 years to say she has a daughter who's almost two, and apparently this is something Kim has gotten very good at concealing, because Matt doesn't seem like he's had the slightest suspicion about Norma's existence. "And you decided NOW to tell me," he says, which to me suggests that the talk of her moving to Florida might have been a lot more one-sided than Kim let on. "I mean, like, I get that I was lying, but can you really blame me, like, you told me to begin with, like, you don't like children," Kim babbles. Yeah, I...think that's Matt's point. He says nothing, which for some reason emboldens Kim to barrel forward: "Which leads me to my next question would you like to be her godfather?" Jesus, lady, read a fucking park. Also, does she know that "godfather" and "stepfather" are not the same thing? Also, this child is almost two and doesn't already have a godfather? "HOLD UP," says Matt. "I've never even met her. I'm just now finding out about her!"

You know I hate to agree with Nev, but: honestly! Max also makes Kim admit that she'd skipped one of their planned in-person meetings due to labour. Matt:

And then I guess because he figures things can't get any worse, Max suggests that Kim tell Matt how she feels about him. She feels awkward about doing so in front of the entire Catfish crew, so Matt points to a bench nearby and heads over there with Kim, and then has to sit there as she not only fails to make eye contact but hides inside her fucking hair again to say that she "can't say [she] didn't fall in love" with him. Which I guess is her typically weird way of saying she DID fall in love with him -- but, you know, she's the worst. Matt says nothing for a while, and when she finally uncovers her face, he tells her he's "at a complete loss for words." Again: what have they actually been planning? Because it seems like if he'd really been envisioning the possibility that she'd move to Florida, he'd be way more angry about the Norma news, whereas to me this reads more like blank confusion that she's built a whole imaginary future around yet without him, you know?

Kim abruptly says that "this" is "pointless" and heads back toward Max and Nev, with the flummoxed Matt following. Kim then goes right past them, saying she just wants to look at the water, and when it seems like Max and Nev are each going to take one of these star-crossed sexters aside, Kim asks if she can go for a run, and then...does?

SHE IS SO WEIRD!!! Poor Matt! Left alone, Max -- evidently also stunned by the complete wacko whose cause the show has taken up -- loses fluency: "Okay, so, do you want, kind of, romantic thing with Kim, or not?" "That I can't really decide right now," says Matt, reasonably, as he watches Kim continuing to RUN AWAY FROM HIM. He needs to sleep on it. Sleep for a few days, my dude. SLEEP ON THE PLANE BACK TO FLORIDA.

The Post-Confrontation Confrontation

For some reason, Matt does not immediately head from the park to the airport, so he's around for Max and Nev to pick up the next day and bring back to the Airbnb for Couch Time with Kim. Before they can even get to the Couch, though, Kim comes in hot, meeting the trio at the car with Norma in her arms. Might as well go for it, I guess. It seems as though Matt knew he'd be meeting Norma, though, since he's brought a gift for her. This is as good a place as any to say that not liking kids and not wanting kids are not the same thing. Lots of perfectly nice people don't want kids but enjoy spending time with other people's -- which I know because I am one of them. Based on Matt's (admittedly somewhat reserved) friendliness, I think it's probable that Kim decided he didn't like kids even though he didn't actually ever say that. The gift, by the way, is a stuffed bunny and Norma is very good at receiving gifts.

Everyone goes inside (Norma joining Kim on the Couch, though Kim says her dad will probably come pick her up soon). Nev indicates Norma, quietly enjoying a sippy cup, and witness-leads Matt, "What do you think? Pretty cute!" Again, it's very possible that Matt could agree that Norma's cute -- which he does, noncommittally -- and still not want to pursue a relationship with her mother because he does not want to be a parent; it's shitty of Kim to have omitted this part of her bio, and shittier for Max and Nev to try to excuse that omission on the basis of how adorable this child is (which is very, but that's not the point!). Nev guesses that Matt doesn't spend much time with kids, which he confirms he does not. Nev further notes that Matt is not ready to engage with a child.

Yeah, I...think you nailed it, bro. I'd also note that KIM doesn't seem ready to engage WITH MATT, given how she's using one of the primary impediments to their relationship as a HUMAN SHIELD right now, but no one comments on that. Before they can get into anything, Joe shows up to collect Norma; Kim hurries out to bring Norma to him while Matt hangs back, commenting that both Matt and Joe have a lot of hair. Sometimes it's okay not to say anything, Nev.

And then for some reason Nev and Max drive Kim and Matt -- in apparent silence, from what we can see -- to some ice cream place to have their last conversation of the visit. If the idea is to confine Kim in a space where she can't run away, I guess that makes sense. "So, you calm now?" Matt asks, dryly. "Little bit," she allows. Matt asks where they're going from here, and after ordering him to stop "staring" at her, Kim tells him to "speak first." "BYE," Matt does not say, though he should. Instead, he tells Kim he's not in a position to get into a relationship right now, and again, I must ask, how real was all the supposed talk of Kim ever moving to Florida?! Kim chews her lips, looking away. Matt offers to "help" her with Norma -- I guess financially, since, how else -- saying he's willing to be Norma's godfather, and that he does care about Kim, as a friend. Matt is totally within his rights revising down Kim's hopes for their relationship, given Norma, but...I mean, how old were those sexts?


There is a hug.

The Aftermath

Three months later, Kim -- who, in the only decision of hers of which I approve thus far, has removed her dumb lip rings -- says she's "back at school," which turns out to be "taking online classes": "I'm going for a surgeon." OH, SWEET JESUS. Imagine having this maladjusted psycho as your SURGEON.

"Hi, I'm Dr. Kim, I'll be performing your mastectomy, STOP STARING AT ME."

Norma's fine. Kim talks to Matt "every so often," but she says the show helped her get over her romantic feelings for him, and that she's started dating a local guy she had "friendzoned," and yes she uses that term as if I hadn't already 100% turned against her a long time ago. We see b-roll of Kim and her current boyfriend sitting in that hammock, but I'm sorry, I still don't believe that's really her house.

Nev adds Matt to the call, and asks how he's been fulfilling his duties as godfather. He says he's been "more social" with Norma, which apparently means remaining in front of his camera when Kim has Norma get on Skype. (Parents of toddlers: please do this sparingly.) Kim also says she's visiting Matt in Florida soon, and I guess Norma's coming too because Matt says he's acquired some toys for her. I don't get what's going on between these two, but I guess it works, so good for them.

The Life Lessons Learned

Don't make too many plans for the future with a guy who won't send you a single photo of himself. Don't keep your child a secret from her would-be stepfather for two and a half years. Don't get involved in your ex's love life. Don't pierce your lips. DON'T, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, LET KIM OPERATE ON YOU.

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