Feminist Guide to The Bachelor: S18, E01
Season 18 of The Bachelor debuted earlier this week, and myself – along with millions of other disillusioned Americans – watched with a mixture of delight and disgust as 27 single women threw themselves at the sexy Juan Pablo Galavis.
The premiere episode kicked off with the usual tantalizing montage of the newest ‘Bach throughout the upcoming season, juxtaposed against footage of him playing with his daughter or kicking around a soccer ball, to remind us what a well-rounded catch this man is.
Before the hounds are officially released on Juan Pablo, the season 17 bachelor, Sean Lowe, stops by to give him some advice. His recommendation? Kiss as many girls as possible, just make sure the other ones don’t see it.
When we catch up with Juan Pablo later, he’s outside the Bachelor pad (literally) with Chris Harrison – aka man who has the best job ever second only to Bravo’s Andy Cohen. He tells JP that due to such an overwhelming response, they are increasing the number of contestants from 25 to 27. Aye carumba!
In what is basically equivalent to American Idol’s audition episodes in its hay day (remember this guy?), the next hour of footage is women embarrassing themselves relentlessly on national television while the rest of the world sits back in awe.
Chemistry props, cheesy one-liners, ill attempts at speaking sexily in Spanish – these are just some of the tactics the women use to make an impression during their “first hello.” But nothing took the cake more than the girl who exited the limo with a fake baby bump, in an effort to bond with Juan over the fact that she would also like to have children. What a way to leave a first impression – way to go… oh shit, your name has already been forgotten.
To anybody with a pair of eyes, it would seem that most of the contestants are lying about their age by 5-10 years. Then, in walks a barefoot girl named Lucy, coined “The Free Spirit” by producers. Aka the girl who I will be rooting for until she is voted off later in this episode. Nothing better than a trust fund chick who throws a flower wrap on her head and calls herself a hippy.
Well if you hadn’t made such a big deal out of it, nobody would have known you messed up!
When the flustered penis – I mean pianist – heads inside, she forgets to tell Juan Pablo her name. He follows after her, and upon his surprise appearance in the living room all of the women cackle with excitement, and one woman looks like she may actually spontaneously combust.
Wait, let’s see that again:
Despite the epic cheesiness and cringe-worthy moments that make these shows worth watching, Juan Pablo’s charm is undeniable. He’s constantly putting these batshit crazy girls at ease and acting amused by their horrifying props and rehearsed lines. F*ck, why didn’t I apply for this show?
And by “he” you mean “the producers.” And by “goofy” you mean, “going to masturbate to the pictures later to help narrow down the rose selection process.”
Free-spirited Lucy meets with Juan, and to prove to him how confident she is she throws her feet over his lap and rubs his face in her stinky armpits. Or, something like that.
She tells Juan she’s “a drifter who has no home” which really means she’s been bumming off her friends and the only reason she is on the show is because they kicked her off of their couch.
The night is slipping away and some women are getting angry that they haven’t gotten 1:1 time with Juan Pablo yet. He’s spending all of his time with Renee the Single Mom, Nikki the Nurse, and Andi the District Attorney (who must be lying about her job because what law office would let her take that much time off?)
Wait, hold on… is that what I think it is? Are those… TEARS? YESSSSS! We have tears, people, we have tears! Lauren H. – a “mineral coordinator” who earlier revealed that she can never get over that time her fiancé dumped her out of the blue – is sad that she hasn’t gotten alone time with Juan Pablo yet. As tears stream uncontrollably down her face, it’s clear to America that she is the token “Not Over Their Ex” contestant and will likely be gone before the first episode reaches its conclusion.
When we first met Opera Singer Sharleen as she exited the limo, the only impression she made was one of an awkward and out of place person. Yet Juan finds himself entranced with her elegance and beauty (entranced = confused by how little of a f*ck she gives). After giving her his suit jacket to stay warm, he runs inside to fetch the coveted “first impression rose” which will save her from elimination.
The most epic part of this scene is when he runs into the living room and you see a gaggle of girls sitting on the couches awkwardly next to each other sharing blankets. They all must be so bored as f*ck, having phony conversations while thinking to themselves if they just hold out the longest maybe they can get some early AM ass. And I mean, who hasn’t been that girl on the couch at some point in their life?
As he is delivering the rose to Shar, she’s admitting to the camera during a solo interview that she was surprised she didn’t feel more of a connection when she first met Juan, and that overall “the whole thing felt kind of forced.” Basically, she’s the only normal human being to ever be on the Bachelor.
OH MY GOD THAT WAS INCREDIBLE. The only thing better than Sharleen’s reaction to receiving the first impression rose was the fact that you can see all of the girls watching from the couch in the background.
And so, because Sharleen is completely disinterested in the Bachelor, he is completely fixated on her. Typical male. How could she be so unimpressed with the charms of Señor Juan Pablo? Or, as she so lovingly refers to him as, “sir.”
The night goes on… and on… and on. Finally we’ve reached the rose ceremony. Get your Kleenex out – Lauren H.’s breakdown was merely an appetizer to this main course. Juan Pablo reluctantly begins the elimination process, and shit immediately starts to get weird. The best moment of the rose ceremony happens when JP calls out for Cat to accept a rose, but Kylie mishears him and steps forward instead. Doh! This is especially awkward because she ends up getting the boot, along with: Alexis, Amy, Ashley, Christine, Lacy, Lauren, Maggie and Val. Yeah – I don’t remember who they are either.
Even though Lady Who Got Left by Her Fiancé already cried all over Juan Pablo about her ex, she can’t understand why she wasn’t given a rose. She’s also “tired of people looking at her and feeling sorry for her.” Well, then, maybe you should stop crying on national television. Have some self respect for the love of – oh wait, you’re a contestant on The Bachelor therefore you’ve already lost all of that.
Amy J., a creepy massage therapist who gave JP the most boner-repelling back rub of his life earlier, is also deeply hurt by the elimination. She saunters out in her pleather gold dress, tears streaming down her face, clutching her fists together and telling the camera that “sometimes people don’t always feel you the way you feel them.”
Finally, somebody is making some sense on this show.