Love Stories: John of TVLand’s ‘First Love, Second Chance’

Jealousy isn’t pretty. She isn’t even cute. But this doesn’t stop her from rearing her head especially in romantic relationships.

Over two decades ago, Jealousy decided to show up right in the midst of John’s relationship with college love Deanna leading the couple to separate.

John may be willing to give the relationship another try as long a Jealousy is not in the picture.

On TVLand’s First Love, Second Chance (FLSC, Wednesdays, 10 p.m. Eastern/Pacific), we will see if John and Deanna are ready to make it work, or even want to for that matter.

As a part of a series of Q&As with FLSC cast members, The Ride talked to John . (For what Deanna had to say, click here.)

John from “John and Deanna” airs Wednesday, April 7 (For a sneak Peek, click here.)

The Ride: How frightened were you that your first love would not only not look the same as when you last saw her, but would look far worse than you could ever have imagined?

John: I definitely was concerned about that.  I knew she had kids and had been married and divorced so I pictured her NOT looking like she did back when we were together.

The Ride: What if the latter was true – looked far worse than you ever imagined – what would you have done?

John: Well, I did have this as a concern but I was not going to be so shallow. I know if I spend time with someone and they have personality and charm, I can be attracted to that sometimes.

The Ride:  And did you focus on keeping in shape, looking your best, just in case you ran into that first love?

John: I have always had a fitness lifestyle. Mainly to stay attractive to the opposite sex and not just for my first love. Looking my best will always be a cornerstone of my lifestyle.

John of 'John and Deanna' of TVLand's 'First Love, Second Chance' (photo: Courtesy of TVLand)

The Ride: How did you find out about the show?

John: A casting agent emailed me about the show.  I thought it was spam. When we finally spoke and he told me it was Deanna that wanted to reconnect with me, I said, “No way.” Our relationship was the only one I had ever had that ended badly. Time passed, and the casting agent had stayed in contact with me. He asked me to have an open mind about the show and finally I agreed. I am glad I did.  Good job guys.

The Ride: What was the selection process like?  I would think the casting people/producers would want to make sure that no one had any stalker tendencies.

John: I had forgotten about that but yes there was a screening process. I had to visit a psych and do a personality test. I also had to do a lab for blood work and testing. Lets see, there were also several film screens where they mailed me a camera where I taped myself answering their questions on the phone while I taped it.

The Ride: You are pretty vulnerable on the show. Why were you so willing to let a national television audience see that vulnerability?

John: To me vulnerability is a great feature for a person to have. I am not afraid to show that side of me plus it makes for great TV programming. The good thing for Deanna and I was that we were not like that back when we dated but we were when we filmed the show.  Felt good.

The Ride:  Your friends have a lot to say when they met your first love for the first time. What did they have to say when you told them you were going to be on the show?

John: It was split. Some said I was crazy because editing can make anyone look very good or very bad if they wanted to. I totally believed that. Plus I had that wonderment about her looks and how my reaction was going to translate on to film. Other friends said it was great and I would be crazy not to take the opportunity. How often do any of us get a chance to be on a television show? Almost never.

The Ride: What did your family have to say?

John: My mother and father did not think it was a good idea. They remembered my relationship with Deanna being one with lots of arguing, drinking and unpleasantries. They didn’t want to have anything to do with it at all.

John and Deanna of TVLand's 'First Love, Second Chance' (photo: Courtesy of TVLand)

The Ride: So do you believe in love at first sight?

John: Yes, anything in life is completely possible.

The Ride: Did you believe in love at first sight before you met your first love?

John: I think so. I was somewhat naive back then so I believed in true love back then and I still foster the same idea.

The Ride: “Hopeless romantic” or “Cautious Cynic”?

John: Hopeless romantic for sure.  I am still seeking out someone to spend my life with to this day.  I am ready.

The Ride: What do you hope people get from watching the show?

John: I see “completion” as the theme from our show. I can now see that women are seeking out male approval from three different men in their life.  Their fathers, their spouse and from their first love if that person is not the spouse. So for us, I never gave her the gift of acknowledgment that she had sought her entire life. She and I were just so young back then so I rarely considered the long-term effects of our relationship on our future relationships.  It felt good for her and I to have completion in our relationship even if it was 20 years after we broke it off.

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