Dave Holmes (actor)

David Robert "Dave" Holmes (born March 14, 1971) is an American writer, producer, and television personality who gained national attention as the runner-up on MTV's first Wanna Be a VJ contest in 1998. From the beginning, he distinguished himself from other candidates with an encyclopedic knowledge of music trivia.

Dave Holmes
David Robert Holmes

(1971-03-14) March 14, 1971
OccupationTV personality, actor, blogger, writer
Years active1996–present

Despite his loss to Jesse Camp, MTV hired Holmes as a VJ shortly after Wanna Be a VJ. He went on to host several MTV shows, including 120 Minutes, Video Clichés, a Real World reunion special, and the popular Say What? Karaoke until 2001. He also was a substitute host on Total Request Live. His MTV career lasted about three years longer than Camp's.

After leaving MTV in 2002, Holmes hosted FX's weekly movie night DVD on TV for 10 seasons, and Court TV's Saturday Night Solution for six. He also hosted CBS's reality comedy series Fire Me Please in 2005. On July 7, 2007, he co-hosted Bravo's coverage of the Live Earth concerts with Karen Duffy. He also appeared on a variety of talking-head shows for VH1, E!, Tru TV on BBC. Holmes had a recurring role as "Leslie Frost" on Comedy Central's Reno 911!

Holmes came out as a gay man in Out magazine in 2002.[1] On September 23, 2010, Holmes contributed a video to the "It Gets Better" project,[2] spearheaded by advice columnist and gay rights activist Dan Savage.[3][4]

He has been an editor-at-large for Esquire since 2015. Currently, he is the host of the LGBTQ-themed Earwolf podcast Homophilia, which Entertainment Weekly called "thoughtful and charming." He also hosts the Maximum Fun comedy quiz show International Waters, and, along with musician Mike Doughty, the Real World–themed Feral Audio podcast Truu Stowray. He also appeared in a series of commercials for Ford motors.

Since 2003, Holmes has co-hosted the live comedy game show The Friday Forty with The Walking Dead executive producer Scott M. Gimple. He is also an on-air personality on the SiriusXM music channel The Spectrum.

Early life

Born in New Jersey and raised in St. Louis, Holmes's family includes parents Charles and Mary Lou and two older brothers, Dan and Steve. The family runs a financial consulting business in Clayton, Missouri, a St. Louis suburb. Holmes attended Villa Duchesne and Oak Hill School, the Saint Louis Priory School and the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, where he worked at WCHC, the campus radio station, and interned at WCCA-TV, Worcester's public access television station.

Personal life

Holmes has been in a long-term relationship with musician Ben Wise since the early 2000s.[5][6]


On June 28, 2016, Penguin Random House's Crown Archetype imprint published Holmes' nonfiction book Party of One: A Memoir in 21 Songs. The memoir chronicles Holmes's experiences coming to self-acceptance during adolescence and early adulthood, with popular music as a guide and backdrop, from the 1980s through the present day.[7] Kirkus Reviews has described it as "a hilarious and touching coming-of-age story that will strike a particular nerve among Generation Y."[8]



  • Pillowfighter (2002, as Blindfolded Man)
  • Fantastic Four (2005, as Reporter)
  • You Owe Us. (2006, as Billy)
  • Reno 911!: Miami (2007, as Persnickety Desk Worker)
  • Promotion (2008)
  • Atomic Zoo: Sylvia Plath Car Wash (2010, as Cake Boy)
  • Hell Baby (2013, as Rental Car Guy)
  • Contracted (2013, as Therapist)
  • You or a Loved One (2014)


  • Spankin' New Music Week (2000)
  • Kidnapped (2000, as Host)
  • Fire Me... Please (2005, as Host, 3 episodes)
  • Reno 911! (2004-2009, as Leslie Frost)
  • Self Storage (2010-2011, as Chad)
  • Kroll Show (2013, as Day Foams)
  • Ben and Kate (2013, as Casting Director)
  • FX Movie Download (2013, as Host)


  1. "MTV’s Main Mo" Interview with Stephen Schulman, 7 May 2009, HX.com. Retrieved 5 July 2009.
  2. "Gay youth of America, trust me on this one: IT GETS BETTER." itgetsbetterproject YouTube channel. Uploaded 23 September 2010.
  3. "Bitchblogs: It Gets Better" Blog Post, s.V. "Social Commentary" by Kelsey Wallace, 23 September 2010.
  4. "It Gets Better" Blog post by Andrew Sullivan for the Atlantic, 22 September 2010.
  5. "I Said Goodbye to My Best Friend Last Night". Esquire.com. 2015-12-08. Retrieved 2018-07-24.
  6. "The Ernest Experience Radio Show - Dave Holmes". BlogTalkRadio.
  7. "Party of One: A Memoir in 21 Songs, by Dave Holmes".
  8. Review of Party of One: A Memoir in 21 Songs, by Dave Holmes, April 30th, 2016.
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