On the new Fox talk show “The Real,” Loni Love was the funny, outspoken big sister who dispenses extremely practical dating advice. Among her bits of wisdom: Don't get high before a date.
Love, a former electrical engineer who grew up in the Detroit projects, has quite a bit of experience with dating advice. Earlier this year, she published the dating guide “Love Him or Leave Him, but Don't Get Stuck With the Tab: Hilarious Advice for Real Women.” The 42-year-old remains a “satisfied single,” but when she does date, she knows what she wants.
“I like my man to be tall. I like him to be able to pick out the United States on the map,” she said.
She's also accustomed to giving audiences a piece of her mind. She started doing stand-up in the late 1990s while she was in college, for the extra cash as much as for the thrill of being on stage. After college, she got a job in Los Angeles and continued doing stand-up. In 2002, she got into the Aspen Comedy Festival. The next year, when the company she worked for was in the midst of layoffs, she asked to be let go.
“I saw that the job could be lost anyway, so I decided to take a chance,” she said.
You've probably seen her since then. She's weighed in on VH-1's “I Love the '70s” and “I Love the '80s Strikes Back,” and she's a regular on “Chelsea Lately.” When she was just starting out in 2003, she was a finalist on “Star Search,” and she's had small roles in many movies and television shows. This summer, she was part of a talk show similar in format to “The View.” It was co-hosted by Tamar Braxton, Adrienne Bailon, Jeannie Mai and Tamera Mowry-Housley.
“The Real” was geared toward a younger audience, and the hosts chatted about fashion, dating and relationships, among other topics. It was clear that the hosts enjoyed each other's company — something that was important to Love when she signed on.
“I said, 'I'm not going to be throwing wine and yelling.' I'm not going to be doing that because it's just not my thing,” she said. “(Women are) hormonal and we need to show that, but it's not like we can't be friends.”
Love and the other hosts recently wrapped up the show's first season, and they're waiting to see whether it will become part of Fox's regular lineup.
Throughout, she's toured nearly constantly. She'll be at the Funny Bone this weekend, where her set will likely include commentary on relationships and celebrities, among other topics.
“I try my best to give everybody something,” she said. “It's an honor that people put on clothes, get in the car and drive to a club with a two-drink minimum.”