Kelli Brook, the real estate agent and former Los Angeles Raiderette became the third “cougar” eliminated from NBC’s Age of Love last week. The 40-year-old admitted that she didn’t think things would work out with the young tennis star, but wished she could have stayed on the show a little bit longer. Kelli took some time to stop by BuddyTV the other day to talk about her experience on the show and to share her insights on dating and love.
Read the full interview transcript and listen to the mp3 audio below.
This is Royce from BuddyTV, and I’m here with Kelli Brook Praiser from the Age of Love. How’s it going, Kelli?
I’m good, how’re you, Royce?
I’m doing great. Thanks for taking the time to talk to us.
So Kelli, maybe we could just start off by talking a little bit about your background and maybe you can tell us how you ended up being on the show, Age of Love.
Oh sure. Well let’s see. My background. I started out—I live—I’m from San Diego, originally. I moved to Los Angeles about twenty years ago, and from there I started modeling and acting and I was a Raiderette when the Los Angeles Raiders were here. And then, I’m also a singer. So I got a MySpace page for my music and that’s how the producers of Age of Love found me. They logged on to my MySpace page and left me a message and when they first left it, I was a little intrigued. They had told me the name of the show was The Next Eligible Bachelor. There’s NBC, not ABC so I was intrigued so I wrote them back I said sure I’d be interested and they called me right away and I said “You know, this is kinda strange. You know I’m forty! I’m just a little bit old for your typical dating bachelor show.” And they said “No, the premise is more of a sophisticated show,” and they said nothing about the guy being much younger. They told me he was around our same age. So I was a little bit bummed but you know I was open to it cause I like to try new experiences and I’ve dated guys a little bit younger than me, not ten years younger but, to date, now I’m getting asked out by all the young guys, it’s really funny.
So were you a fan of shows like The Bachelor before agreeing to be on the Age of Love?
Oh absolutely. I was watching The Officer and a Gentleman Bachelor just while they interviewed me I was—I loved those kinds of shows. They’re fun and some of the girls on them are just nuts. Well some of them are really genuine and really nice and I hope to come across that way and I think I did.
Yeah. Did you know that Mark Philippoussis was a famous tennis player before appearing on the show?
Yeah it’s funny cause I’m the only person who did. In fact, none of the other girls could pronounce his name. I’m a big tennis fan and I didn’t know him that well, but I had heard the name. I remembered that he played [Pete] Sampras in one of the tournaments in the past and I did recognize the name, yeah.
What would you say was most attractive to you about Mark?
Well right off the bat, I love the really tall guys so 6’5” was right down my alley. He’s a handsome guy, and then his shyness is kinda cute and kinda sexy. It was kinda of sweet. Although you know, I’ve never asked out a guy in my life so the fact that I sort of had to be a little bit forward with him to get anything out of him was unusual for me. I’m not used to that. I usually only date guys who kinda come after me. So that was a little bit out of my element but he was an attractive guy and he was sweet, he was a gentleman, and I have nothing bad to say about Mark. He was a really great guy.
After watching the episodes on TV, were there any moments that you wish they had shown on TV that maybe they didn’t?
A couple. Well, the lunch that we had had, me, Amanda and Mark, I thought that the lunch had just ended by accident with me cause I really didn’t feel a big connection with him. But the producers wanted to get a better interview out of me so they told me he wanted to spend the extra time with me which we now know was not true. So that little white lie led to a little bit more interview for me and it worked better for the show. While watching I was a little bit irritated, but I got over it cause I realized, it’s television, and it wasn’t that bad. Then you know, I’m a little competitive. I was really the only athletic person in the show, and when we did the triathlon and the tennis playing, I know how to play tennis, they didn’t show me play any tennis. In the triathlon, I was in last place because our bike, Maria and my bike broke down right at the very beginning. So we almost had to run the entire race. And they didn’t show that. They just showed I was in last but still made it on the boat so it was alright. I hoped—I wanted to get highlighted more.
Do you have any regrets about your experience at all being on the show?
I didn’t think I was gonna end up with Mark. I didn’t feel that connection. I would’ve liked to have been there longer and I think I might’ve been there longer if I hadn’t kiss and told? Which was really what all the girls did. As soon as we got back to the apartment after any time with Mark, the first questions from everyone was “Did you kiss him?” So of course I said that we did, even though they weren’t super passionate kisses. Amanda apparently didn’t like hearing that from me so I think she threw me under the bus. So I think that’s why I got thrown off this last episode. I might’ve lasted a little bit longer but I know he really had a thing for Amanda and I think he has a thing for Jen too so those are my two that I think are might take it to the end.
Age of Love, it’s gotten quite a bit of a buzz especially online, on websites like BuddyTV. How much attention do pay to things people write about you on all the different message boards regarding the show?
Well, gosh. Oh boy. At first I was thinking, okay this was going to be cool to read. I went on to the NBC website and I read a couple of sweet things and then I read someone said that I was on the wrong show, I should be on Biggest Loser and I needed an elbow lift. I looked like a man in drag. So I immediately stopped going on those sites and I still read a little bit of it that I have to take it with tongue and cheek you know, these people have nothing better to do than to write bad things. For the most part, people have written some nice things. They would criticize the show, but people love to criticize everything. I understand that and it’s a reality show and it’s a dating show and it’s one of those top kinds of shows to get criticism. So I was ready for that and now I’ve sort of learned to brush it off. Take the good stuff.
In your opinion, when it comes to dating, how big of a factor is age?
You know for me, age is somewhat of a factor. You know like before the show, I hadn’t dated guys more than three or four years younger than me. Or three or four years older, for that matter. I’ve never really felt that much in common with even a guy ten years older than me so I felt for Mark when he was thrown into this because you’re okay with dating much older or much younger or you’re not. And you know, he was right. At first it was a shock, but as we got to know him, the age did really sorta disappear, but that’s just him. I think it really depends on the person. I have been asked out by either from twenty one to fifty in the last couple of months. And you know, just being on a couple of days with a couple of twenty five year olds I have to admit and they’re nice. But it is a bit of a factor. The maturity level is just not exactly there. So it’s a bit of a factor. Not huge, but again I think it boils down mostly to the person.
Definitely. What were your feelings about the idea of true love before the show and then how they changed it all after your experience being on Age of Love?
Well I believe in it. I believe in true love. I mean I’ve had my share of relationships and I’ve been in love, I’m still looking for the one that will last a lifetime, I still think it’s out there, I still think it’s possible, I have my eyes open at all times for it. But also you know I’m one of those happy people and I’ve got a great core group of friends and a huge family that I stay close to. So…true love, my sister’s got it, my parents have it, my brothers have it and I definitely think out there for me and everybody. If they want it.
Was there anyone in the show in particular that you didn’t get along with?
No you know I didn’t get to know a couple—the first girls like Adelaide and Lauren. I didn’t get to know them at all. So I didn’t know them. The rest of the girls you know when they first—the twenties first moved in, they was a little tension in the house, because there were some of the forties that weren’t happy about them being there and the whole—the producers really did a good job of trying to pit us against each other, I tried my best to smooth it over as much as I could so I didn’t have any disagreements with anyone, really. Of course, all the forties we become best friends immediately and we can’t wait to talk to each other. So no, there were a couple of attitudes but nothing too major that I would talk badly about. It’s always nice to talk some dirt but I don’t have much, sorry.
I know Kelli, you mentioned that you’ve been dating a lot of guys. Are you currently dating anyone right now at the moment?
(Laughs) You mean a lot of guys…actually I think a couple of prospective fakers but I have nothing serious right now. No. No, I got a lot of first dates, Very few seconds, so I still keep my eyes open.
If you could give one piece of advice to any young woman about to appear on a dating show like the Age of Love, what would it be?
Remember that it’s a television show, and it’s gonna get edited. So anything you say will be played and can be and will be used against you. I work in a law office so I’m always very careful to watch what you say and you think of a lot of things that are said are just joking but they can be edited and look quite different at the twenty fifteen and all those girls were really sweet, great girls and Mary, I just love. I can’t wait to talk to her. She’s really a sweet girl. I’m just crying at what’s going on with her, I feel so bad for her cause she’s a sweet, funny, happy girl every moment that I saw her. So I just say take heed to watch what you say cause you’ll never know how it’s gonna get portrayed.
So what’s in store for you now, Kelli? You know, what are you up to?
Gosh I’m just trying to get my real estate business off the ground, I had to take some time away from that. I got my real estate license almost a year ago, and I’ve just been busy with family and my other work trying to get a position where I can start. So that’s really my plan. I wanna start selling houses and yeah I’m still a hundred percent decided I’m doing commercial or residential but I wanna get started and August is my goal to start that.
Any final thoughts about the show or your experience in general?
I just want to say good luck to the rest of the girls on it and to Mark. You know he was a real gentleman, I had a great time, I hope I made a good friend in him and the rest of the girls and keep watching cause I think you’re gonna see a lot of fun stuff. I don’t know what’s coming but I can’t wait to see.
Well thanks again Kelli for your time and from all of us at BuddyTV, good luck.
Thank you so much.
(Interview conducted by Royce Yuen)