Mark Reacts to “Bachelors Abroad” Reality Show

by Mark Davis on January 12, 2013

Hey, Guys:

– National Geographic launched a new show they’re calling “Bachelors Abroad”.  It follows men who are going on tours to find romance overseas.

I’ve been involved in media for a number of years now. Following the launch of my book I was on 42 radio programs. We were on The TODAY Show with Matt Lauer. We had a cable show feature our family. The same themes continue to come up – it’s how the media likes to portray us – and they’re wrong in most every instance.

Like clockwork you can expect that those in the media who have a distaste for our industry will see global romance through the following lens . . .

  • Men are often displayed as bitter toward women in their  own country as the reason they look overseas
  • Women who are beautiful, but motivated to leave for a better life and not for love
  • They will make it seem impossible for sincere people to connect

I just wanted to reach out to anyone who saw this and let them know – “It doesn’t have to be like this”.  But good news doesn’t sell.

When we saw the casting call on Craigslist for the Dr. Phil Show they are preparing on the topic of “Mail Order Brides”, we called in and asked if we could give a testimony in support of good international couples.  We were told that they weren’t looking for good stories – just those who have had major drama.

I’m sure this won’t be the last time there are media portrayals of “Mail Order Brides”.  The message they want to deliver is that the only people who want to look overseas are bitter men and the women they find are only after their money or green cards.

To date, the only examples we’ve seen of honest portrayals of sincere men and women pursuing international marriage was on “Our America with Lisa Ling” and in the “Mail Order Brides” episode of Secret Lives of Women on WeTV.  Those were rare media exceptions, but very welcome.

The truth is this; there are more than 55,000 applications for K-1 Fiance visas every year by US citizens requesting to marry foreign nationals.  Among those there is a reported divorce rate that is less than 20%.  The vast majority of these international married couples are still married today and very happy, but you’re not going to see that very often in the media.  We wish they would.





{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Pete Petri January 13, 2013 at 7:43 pm

Wish I could have seen it Mark. I didn’t have that channel on my Dish! Do you know if there will be a reply online?


Mark Davis January 13, 2013 at 8:06 pm

It’s a commercial for AFA. They had Bob Ray as one of the dating clients – HE’S ONE OF THEIR TOUR GUIDES!

It did accurately depict the AFA program of throw you in a room of 250 women and say ‘good luck’. They showed how the guys had to move from city to city every day and a half and the goal was to get them to want to come back on another tour. The guys on this show had been on two previous tours with no success.

Save an hour of your life. Do something more productive.


Manuel Quintanilla January 14, 2013 at 3:37 am

I just saw the show. I DVR’d it so I can see it when I got home. I noticed that all the men had been on previous tours. There is no coaching to help them have good success with their dates. They never get to really know any of the women because they have to go to the next city.

Bob Ray does not seem like he is serious about finding a wife. He just seem likes he wants to be having fun than finding a bride. What a goof ball

The older man seemed to be reflecting on his past. He talked about a conflict with his children and his former Russian wife. Not Good!!! He needs help getting back in the game. He needs to be coached.

The cop has a good chance of finding a bride but he never stays in one place long enough to know if the relationship will grow. Too many cities in a short amount of time. I wish him luck.


Joe January 14, 2013 at 7:15 pm

I have seen Bob (the tour guide)before in other videos with AFA and NO, I am not impressed with him


muk January 14, 2013 at 7:32 pm

Pete you can find the show online just google “bachelors abroad xvid”


John January 14, 2013 at 7:34 pm

Mark -

Being in media, myself, I expected this, as soon as I heard about it. In fact, I am surprised, they tried to be a commercial for any company, or that they tried to make one of the guys seem decent (albeit less than he probably is).

It’s not about Truth. It’s about ratings. Even in cases of expose pieces. And of course, there are lobby group agendas involved, the one I reference, I am certain, you are familiar.


eric January 14, 2013 at 7:40 pm

Hi Mark ,I watched the show it was fine ,i didn’t see it as bad , I wish had thought harder about spending time with Natalya ,why didn’t he meet her sooner and spend time with her more than the 2 hours he spent with her ,thats what bothered me ,I agree you do want to meet a hand full of women , when you find the one you feel for then don’t fly back with the group ,you should stay and spend as much time as you can with that woman ,and take a later flight when you have to come home ,these tours are great and I would be happy to join your group ,but I would for sure 100% stay longer myself, and truly get to spend quality with her. You don’t need to take many flights back and forth to finally find your wife like they portrayed , The Santa clause ,guy he was really bad ,why would they ever use him as an example ?


Mike January 14, 2013 at 10:38 pm

Thanks for putting up with the show Mark. I’m glad you reviewed here to affirm the scourge that is reality TV. And I agree with John it’s all about spin and ratings … thankfully there are not other shows like this in the mainstream casting international dating in the wrong light.


Anthony January 15, 2013 at 5:12 am

I have said plenty about this, I guess its time to say even more. Mark is right that if you didn’t see it, you didn’t miss much, it was typical of what AFA does and typical of its client base.

Look at anything AFA has done in the media and you’ll see the same thing over and over again; Men usually looked over in our society for being overweight, short, too much facial hair, usually from a small town or does things like driving trucks/farmers, etc.

Why do they go to AFA (and others)? If your from “Fly Over” country in America, the best talent in those bergs has usually checked out after high school graduation or married a local their age. That doesn’t leave you much and if you have tried to date in a small town in America you know what I’m talking about. If your over 40 and in this position, I wish you all the luck in the world because I know it sucks.

Men from major cities don’t fare much better, especially if they are chubby, middle aged, over 50 and divorced (still talking about your ex).

If I was AFA I would have two socials, one with women over 40 for men over 50 and one with women under 40 with men under 45. Some 25 year olds will be interested in a man over 40, so we can’t rule that out.

It might be more fair, but no wonder they have such a low success rate, some have said around 10-15%. That’s terrible. I heard one of the reasons they begged Bud to come back to the company is to sort of whip the guys into to shape. So Mark you have had that effect on them. Anastasia is a lost cause, I wouldn’t even mention them other than the girl that does Hot For Words on You Tube who is Russian has a profile on that web site which I found interesting.

This was another hatchet job by the mainstream media and AFA is laughing likely.


Dennis Jans January 15, 2013 at 5:34 am

It really tells a lot about a company by whom they choose to be in their productions and the people they associate with their company. I’ve seen and heard Bob Ray representing AFA, and I have no idea why he was chosen to be in this program. He is not an AFA client or even a serious tour participant. Manuel, you describe him well – a goofball.

You guys caught many of the flaws in the AFA approach – moving from city to city, offering offensive to the ladies “meat market” socials which most self-respecting women do not attend, providing no coaching to the men during the tour (except to tell them after they’ve had problems to be more careful next time – “now you know”) and another big problem – interpreters who are connected to the local agencies and have no allegiance to the men. The extra cost of these ever-changing interpreters for the private dates can add up to $800 – $1,000 out-of-pocket by tour’s end. All in all, I think it’s a sad reflection of how a company can be too focused on making money and not work towards improving their tours to lead to more successful results for their clients. It’s so wrong.


Glenn January 15, 2013 at 9:47 am

I was on Joe’s first tour with Afa. He is a fun guy to be around. He was like most of the other men on that trip though,only there for a good time. The trip was fun,but it was not much of a success. We were told by the tour leader not to be disappointed that we did not make any meaningful connection. Then he went on to explain that it could take up to five more trips to find the one. Then he joked,”don’t worry though because y’all will get a discount on all of your future trips”.


CODY January 15, 2013 at 5:34 pm

Is this supposed to be a series or just a one off show?


Mark Davis January 23, 2013 at 5:44 am

They say it will end up as a season. Nothing on the schedule as of today.


Val Ber January 15, 2013 at 9:13 pm

Hello Everyone,
I watched this terrible show. I’m sure that some men need to be coached before they will go abroad for sure. They should provide them with emotional safety and peace of mind…This is not a joke to play with feelings.
My opinion is that the only one way to help men is to be prepared for reality. There needs to be a special level of comfort to men and women, and men must know to whom to give trust in their search!


Michael Barnes January 19, 2013 at 1:43 pm

You can find a review of “Bachelors Abroad” here:

A Foreign Affair insists that the show will run beyond its pilot but hasn’t announced any upcoming episodes on their website or Twitter feed. If any of you know when it will air again, let me know.


Michael Barnes — Shining a Spotlight on the International Marriage Market

P.S. MOBN is NOT a matchmaking site. You will find industry news and advise on the IMM at our site. We are not affiliated with any agencies, but you can find them (such as Dream Connections) on our site. Thanks.


Mark Davis January 29, 2013 at 9:18 am

I don’t know if you saw the new addition to the post, but we created a new landing page for guys to find who are searching for information on Bachelors Abroad. It’s at It’s the same content from the Ultimate Match video series, but guys may find this site through their searching before they find our site. The truth needs to get out there if they are to have a real shot at making their dreams come true and I believe we have those answers.


Mark Davis February 10, 2013 at 6:52 am

We’ve been getting a lot of guys signing up for our series because of this. Perhaps some real education will take place. We can only hope.


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