So. Y’all know a thing or two about me. BUT, did you know that I LOVE The Bachelor?
(And by The Bachelor, I mean both The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. Love them equally. I draw the line at Bachelor Pad – have never watched it and never intend to. For purposes of this post, we will refer to both shows as The Bachelor from here on out. Also, I would like you all to know that The Bachelor is an anomaly in my TV watching habits. I do not watch any other dating show, and I have no interest in doing so in the future.)
Yes, indeed, I love The Bachelor. Let’s take a brief walk down memory lane, shall we? (It looks a lot like that suspiciously wet-looking path leading into the mansion.) The first season I can remember watching was Trista’s, in 2003. I also watched season three (in 2003) with Andrew Firestone and Jen Schefft, and the season in 2006 with Travis and Sarah. Next up for me was Andy and Tessa in 2007, and from there, I’ve diligently watched every season: Brad, DeAnna, Matt, Jason, Jillian, Jake, Ali, Brad again, Ashley, Ben, and Emily. Whew!
To clear a few things up, do I think everything that happens on these shows is real? No, of course not. Do I think half of the contestants are ridiculous and mildly insane? Yes, of course. Do I really like some of the contestants and root for them? Yes, of course. Do I truly believe that the couple at the end will make it long term? Depends on the season :)
So yes, there is a bit of a hopeless romantic inside me, but that’s not really why I love the show. I do love that it’s simply fun to watch, and there’s something comforting in the fact that it’s a variation on the same theme every time. I do enjoy watching the narratives and relationships as they unfold, but when it comes down to it, what I really love about this show is the off-screen relationships, not the onscreen ones.
You see, over the last six years, I have somehow convinced almost every member of my family, and most of my friends, to watch this show. It might sound crazy, but watching this show in tandem helps keep us all close. Text messages fly back and forth during every episode, Facebook messages and emails dissecting individual plot lines are sent, and news articles about past contestants are forwarded in the “off season.”
And yes, John watches with me. He would admit openly to you that he is a fan, and he actually has a HIGHLY developed ability to choose the eventual winner from the first episode (which he’s very proud of). My mom and younger sister have been tuned in for about as long as me. Two of my best friends from home have been watching since DeAnna’s season and Trista’s season, respectively, and we frequently schedule Bachelor dessert parties whenever we’re together and it’s in season. John and I convinced our best friend in college to start watching with us during Jason’s season, and she’s been hooked ever since. One of John’s sisters has been watching intensely since crazy Jake’s season (her boyfriend is now a fan as well), and the other, since Brad’s second go-round (her husband also watches). You see? It’s not so much the show, but what we’ve built around it. I have so many good memories related to this show that really have nothing to do with it at all.
All this to say, I’ll be watching tonight when Sean’s season premiers, and so will most of my peeps. In fact, the Thomas children and spouses are actually holding a formal draft for this season. Take that, fantasy football! In case any of you are interested in the details, here’s how it will work:
(1) We’ll have three teams of couples.
(2) The draft will occur after the first episode. We’ll have a snake-style draft with the team receiving the final pick in one round receiving the first pick in the subsequent round. We’ll circulate a Google doc to fill in draft picks during the week.
(3) Each team will draft five players. Contestants can be on only one team.
(4) Teams earn points every week for each of their players who receive a rose in that episode. Points are allocated as follows:
1 point per rose until you leave the country
2 points per rose when out of the country
3 points for the rose that brings you to the hometown date (and subsequent roses except for the winning rose)
6 points for the winning rose
Let’s hear it: Do you love The Bachelor, too? If so, please tell me 1) what season you started watching, and 2) who your favorite bachelor, bachelorette, couple, or contestant is. I’ll go first. I actually really like Brad. I like Jason a lot, and I like Molly, too (didn’t at the time). I REALLY liked both Ali and Roberto, I was so glad Ashley picked JP (Ashley herself was kind of eh), and I still really like Emily. Your turn!
P.S. Last night was the premier of Downton Abbey! Love that show, too :)