Every Monday I go spend time with a group of 12-14 Girl Guides and tell them they can be whomever they want to be. We try our best to instill feminist values into them and encourage them to be the best versions of themselves.
Then I go home, turn on The Bachelor and watch feminism die.
I’ll confess something. I’m apart of #BachelorNation, however, I think it’s time to leave #BachelorNation and just be part of #BacheloretteNation.
Let’s start at the beginning of my obsession.
In 2015, I decided not to go back for a full summer of camp for the first time in my life. It was rough. I desperately wanted to be up North with my friends, unplugged and sitting on a dock. On the flip side, the lack of camp meant that for the first time in my life, I was able to watch Summer TV. I jumped into the Bachelorette with Canadian Kaitlyn Bristowe.
I loved it.
I loved watching a group of boys fight over this Canadian gal. Tanner Tolbert, Jared Haibon, and Ben Higgins all stole my heart. I was so into the drama. I hated Nick Vaill and I adored Shawn Booth. It was a perfect entry into the show. When they announced that Ben Higgins, the boy of all our dreams, would be the Bachelor – I was sucked in.
It was a fantastic season. Olivia Caridi was a great ‘villain’ very easy to love to hate. Becca Tilley, Caila Quinn and Joelle “JoJo” Fletcher made this show worth watching. I wanted Ben to pick Jojo so that Caila could be the Bachelorette, but when we went for Lauren B, clearly JoJo HAD TO BE the Bachelorette. Now there were a few things wrong with this show, first off – Ben said ‘I love you’ to two women. That’s a bit manipulative. And secondly, the whole twin thing was really weird. Looking back this was the first warning sign that the Bachelor was a bit off.
Then again, I was sucked in because we had Queen JoJo. Chad Johnson appeared eating meat and befriending Canadian Daniel Maguire.
Grant Kemp, Evan Bass, Wells Adams, and James Taylor all left marks. Wells went on to snag Sarah Hyland after the show. There was lots to talk about.
The top three were a dream team – Chase McNary, Robby Hayes and Jordan Rodgers. Yes Jordan Rodgers is a Rodgers – the younger brother of Star Greenbay QB Aaron Rodgers.
It was a stunning season. But it was our 4th place guy, Luke Pell, that stole everyone’s heart. He was the obvious choice for Bachelor which is why they obviously went with…
Hm. Now at this point, I need to bring in Bachelor in Paradise. After two full seasons, I was sucked in with all the characters in the ‘Bachelor Family’. So yes, I also watch the spin-off. It’s terrible. Just awful. Pure trash. However on the summer 2016 edition, Third Times a Charm, Nick Viall “redeemed” himself. I also think he showed us how boring he is. But that is what the Bachelor wants and thus…
Nick Vaill get’s a fourth shot at love.
Instead of giving Luke Pell our dreamboat his chance, the bachelor producers scrapped the bottom of the bachelor barrel and booked Nick. So fine, I’m not thrilled with this (at all) but fine. We’ll go with Nick… however his season is awful. It’s filled with all these women who are SO MUCH BETTER THAN HIM. Every time he dumped one, I was yelling at my TV screen, “GOOD FOR YOU GIRL”. You’ll be fine! Dodged a bullet. Like why are we glorifying this has been as an eligible man. RUN AWAY LADIES. The women here were great – we had Canadian Vanessa Grimaldi (who ‘won’), Raven Gates, Corinne Olympios and of course the incomparable Rachel Lindsay. Obviously, Nick and Vanessa were done shortly after the show because Nick is the worst. The only person who disagrees is January Jones and again I say – YOU’RE SO MUCH BETTER!
Well thankfully Rachel Lindsay took on being the Bachelorette. She was the obvious choice – but bonus points to her for being the first black bachelorette. Another amazing season, the majority of the boys here are not smart enough, not good enough for this gal. But one was – Mr. Peter Kraus. The only person in the history of the show that was smart enough to say, I really really like you – but we’ve only known each other for a short period of time, so no I’m not going to propose. But when he does propose you know that he’ll mean it. So obviously she dumps him.
And so we get Peter as our Bachelor right? Wrong.
Time to remember Arie Luyendyk Jr.
— Tanner Tolbert (@ttolbert05) March 6, 2018
But really. Who wants to remember Arie. He’s a race car driver turned real estate agent (lame). He’s a kissing bandit (gross). He’s a “silver fox” (nope). Once again I’m watching this show going WHY did we pick this guy. Not that any guy should have 20+ women fawning all over them, but this just doesn’t deserve it. But whatever. I’ll watch #JanuARIE and get caught up in the Krystal drama.
Once again the women on this show are more accomplished (Seinne), smarter (Bekah M), more interesting (Kendal) and funnier (Tia) than the lame Bachelor. Any of these women could have whomever they like and yet here we are trying to get this boring 36-year-old to like them. It truly is where feminism goes to die.
However, like with Ben and Nick I put up with it – but this was a three times your out kind of situation.
Arie showed his true colours in the last episode. Yay, he proposed to Becca K. Wrong. He “screwed it up” and actually wanted Lauren B. So we went to the ‘couples getaway weekend’ and crushed Becca.
It was one of the worst moments of reality TV I’ve ever seen. One of those moments that makes me ashamed to work in reality Television – one of those moments that should be on UnReal. For 40 minutes they aired the ‘unedited’ split screen breakup.
Producer: so were thinking you get to a happy couple meet up and unexpectedly break up with her because you’re still in love with Lauren.
— Dana Weiss (@Possessionista) March 6, 2018
Well buddy. Not much to say here but you’re the worst.
Even Corinne agrees.
Then they went on their media tour. My favourite moment was when they said it was “worth it”. Was it? Was it “worth” destroying a young woman on National TV so you, jerkface, could find ‘true love’. What a load of crap. I’m really sick and tired of watching these men get rewarded for their shitty behaviour.
Thankfully the media – while ‘obligated’ to host them on their shows – was not having any of his bullshit. From Jimmy to Kelly and Ryan to the ladies of the view – everyone destroyed them. I partly feel bad for Lauren because she’s getting dragged into this – however, Lauren should not have taken him back. He showed his true colours and it was awful.
Watch these clips – I promise it’s worth it:
The thing is though – I cannot look away. There is a specific type of entertainment here that sucks me – I would almost go as far as to say that I’m addicted to this franchise. Many members of ‘Bachelor Nation’ feel the same way. As Jimmy says – people watch the Bachelor with a lot of passion.
I love this sketch he did with JoJo – the experience of watching the show is most of the fun. Judging the girls, enjoying a glass of wine, and yelling at the TV is all part of the experience. It makes Monday nights more fun. It’s how so many of us bond on Tuesday mornings at work – judging the girls.
But I think it’s time to move on.
Every year we get these duds who are not worth our time – and we become the worst versions of ourselves as we judge these wonderful women on what they look like, talk like, wear etc. Then these boys pick a ‘winner’ and then within a year they’re done.
On the flip side, the Bachelorette continues to be a feminist machine. We’re talking women in the drivers seat – and women who actually make good choices about the men they choose at the end. Kaitlyn Bristowe and Sean Lowe are still together, dido for Jojo & Jordan and Rachel & Bryan. None of the last three bachelors ended up with their ‘Pick’. In fact only Sean Lowe, Bachelor #17 of 22, has made it work with his pick. No one else is together. On the Bachelorette, 6 of 13 are making it work. The odds of success are MUCH higher on the women’s seasons.
I’m sick and tired of watching men be idiots. Which I think a lot of other women are too… Kaitlyn Bristowe is one of them.
Kaitlyn might be one of the smartest bachelorette’s we’ve had. She truly understands TV. Kudos to our Canadain girl here – she is one of a kind. She had a really tough season. People judged her so harshly and yet she rose above it. Her TED talk about Reality TV is phenomenal. She talks all about her original intention of building a brand. It’s the classic ‘Not Here for the Right Reasons’. So many people go on this show so that they can get those 400k followers and a ‘fab fit fun box’ endorsement. She got that – but she talks about the responsibility of having a platform. I also really appericate how she’s taking a long engagement…
This show is it’s best when the people #bachelornation loves – are the people who lead this show. They get it right on the bachelorette – but they need to do better on the bachelor.
Stop going into the archives – to people who are their 4th try – pick the nice boy from the small town that we all want. Then let the couple get to know each other without all the helicopters, hot tubs in random places and no-name private concerts.
I’d love to see more hometown dates – but without the families. I want to know if these people are actually compatible – do their lifestyles match up? I want more conversations about having kids or not having kids.
I want more group dates were we do service projects – let’s build a habitat house together, let’s sort food at a food bank, let’s use our platform and our numbers for good. I want to hear conversations about what kind of causes these people care about. Here comes a really bold statement – I want to know who votes for what political party. I want to hear values and political discussions. Let’s get to know where these people stand.
Perhaps their values are not getting married.
I think this is where I’ll end this little rant – with the idea that this show has to end with an engagement. Peter was adored on Rachel’s season – and he clearly adored her but she ditched him because he wouldn’t get engaged.
In this last season – things would have been a lot less hurtful if they were just in a relationship rather than an engagement.
With more and more people choosing to live common-law, why does this show force these young people into marriage? Why can’t we just say – I pick you to be with, and if it works out later down the road then maybe yes we can get married but for now I just want to date you. Without cameras. I think we’d get a lot more successful relationships.
Yes – we need drama to make this show interesting, but we do not need to emotionally rip people’s hearts out because they don’t fit into a box. And sure – we need something flashy to work up like a ring, but you know keys to their place are also silver and can mean just as much – if not more if it’s genuine.