A woman by the name of Erica Denae Meshke met Michael Friday on Tinder and has accused him of facilitating a sexual assault, resulting in the cancellation of the second episode of The Proposal because it features Friday as a contestant. The Milwaukee woman claims on her Facebook page that in November 2017, she and Michael met for a date as they had arranged, and he asked her to come with him to an entertainment room located in an apartment complex. TMZ reports that when they arrived, two men around 50-years-old were present. She called them “his friends.” The men poured her a drink she believes was spiked, and Friday left. Erica says that she texted and called him multiple times, but he never responded. The other two men told her he would be returning, but she didn’t seem him again. Meshke reported that they led her upstairs but didn’t provide details about what happened. She only said, “The things I endured for the next 5 hours were unspeakable.”
Fox News reports that she also alleges that Michael is responsible for her date rape. She says that she was threatened to keep quiet about what happened and that she told her friends and posted about her experience anonymously in a Facebook group. Erica says that she ran into Friday sometime after the alleged sexual assault. When she confronted him about it, he defended his actions.
ABC and Warner Horizon Productions issued a statement on the matter.
“An allegation has been made against a contestant on next week’s episode of ‘The Proposal.’ While the accusation was not related to the contestant’s appearance on the program, we take it very seriously. ABC and the producers of ‘The Proposal’ are pulling the episode while this matter is under review.”
The Proposal is a new dating show on ABC. It features pageant-style competitions that result in matchups. Its goal may be best described by host Jesse Palmer’s declaration, “Let the soulmate pageant begin!” Variety described it as a combination of The Dating Game and The Bachelor. The show’s similarity to The Dating Game is that a mystery man is hidden from 10 single women.
As the show proceeds the man watches the 10 women walk across the stage as an announcer recites facts about the women – “She loves quiet walks on the beach” and such. The second round is like Miss America’s swimsuit round, which was recently eliminated. As the show proceeds, similar pageant-type competitions take place with the man eliminating women after each one. At the end of the show, one woman is left, and he proposes to that one woman.
In some episodes, the situation is reversed, and there’s a mystery woman seeking one man among the 10. It’s in this type of episode that Michael Friday appears. If you’d like to check it out, The Proposal appears on ABC on Monday nights at 10 p.m.