Frank the Entertainer in a Basement Affair

TV review by
Kari Croop, Common Sense Media
Frank the Entertainer in a Basement Affair TV Poster Image
Recycled reality dating contest is racy -- and wince-worthy.

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

The show's very iffy central message is that you can find "true love" by holding auditions and inviting 16 random women into your parents' home ... where you live rent-free and have no apparent occupation.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Frank is best known for his iffy behavior on many other reality shows, and he quips that he likes living at home because he gets free food and his parents do his laundry. Many of the young women are catty and make negative remarks about each other; others will do anything to win. Frank's mother is also known for her outbursts and threats.


Some verbal sparring and insults. Frank's mother tells one of the competitors that "You'd better watch your ass," etc.


Most of the contestants wear revealing clothing that exposes their cleavage, etc., and Frank occasionally appears shirtless. In one scene, a competitor tries to seduce Frank with whipped cream; Frank is also shown sucking a woman's toes.


Bleeped swearing ("f--k," "s--t"), plus audible words like "ass," "hell," and "crap."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

The house rules seem to limit alcohol and drunkenness, but in one scene, Frank and the girls appear to be getting drunk in the Jacuzzi, and Frank's mother yells, "Who put vodka in this water bottle?"

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this reality dating competition attempts to help a 31-year-old man who still lives in his parents' basement find "true love." The female competitors -- who were selected through an audition process -- tend to wear revealing clothing and use their sexuality to try to win Frank over. There's also some crass language, including bleeped swearing (think "f--k"), that comes from both the contestants and Frank's parents. There's also some occasional drinking (and suggested drunkenness), although everyone is of age.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byThatRussianYakAttack March 10, 2010

The Good Kind of Train Wreck. So Bad, It's Fanatastic!

I love this show. Then again, I'm almost eighteen years old. It's so cheesy and dumb that it's good. "It's like watching a train wreck... Continue reading

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

With his larger-than-life mother watching his every move, VH1 reality regular Frank "The Entertainer" Maresca (of I Love New York and I Love Money "fame") attempts to find true love among a pool of 15 prospective girlfriends who are competing for his affections. But the joke's on the ladies in waiting when they're sent to Frank's parents' surburban home instead of an opulent mansion. Why? Because that's where Frank lives ... in the basement. Over the course of 10 episodes, the women attempt to charm Frank into giving them a "Key to His Basement," which symbolizes the key to his heart.

Is it any good?

Forget the fact that the title of this train wreck of a reality dating competition sounds like a porn film. There's a long list of other reasons why it isn't worth your -- or your teens' -- time. For one thing, Frank is pretty much famous for sucking on Tiffany "New York" Pollard's toes in the equally trashy VH1 reality show I Love New York. And most of the competitors on this show have to be in it for their 15 minutes of fame.

As if all that weren't enough, there's also the unavoidable reality that this "reality" show is so painfully scripted and set up that it's actually wince-inducing. If that's not enough to convince you, there's always the show's theme song ... which is sung by "The Entertainer" himself.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why these types of reality competitions seem to be so popular when everyone knows that they rarely result in true love. Why do audiences find these shows appealing? Do you think anyone involved expects a meaningful relationship to result from all the hoopla?

  • In terms of this show, what role does sex seem to play in dating and relationships? Does Frank seem more interested in certain young women because he finds them sexually attractive? Are others discounted because they aren't as openly sexual?

  • To what extent has Frank's parents' house been set up to double as a reality show set? What other aspects of the show seem staged -- or at least less than real?

TV details

  • Premiere date: January 3, 2010
  • Cast: Frank Maresca
  • Network: VH1
  • Genre: Reality TV
  • TV rating: TV-14
  • Available on: Streaming
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

Our editors recommend

For kids who love reality TV

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

Streaming options powered by JustWatch

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality.

Learn how we rate