I'll admit it. The Bachelor has long been my "guilty pleasure" TV. Part of it has to do with the idea of seeing 25-30 women and learning which ones I find attractive. Another has to do with the fact that there have been 14 bachelors now (if I'm not mistaken) and not a single one ended up marrying the one they picked. Seriously...how can you start from the advantage of 25 or 30 bachelorettes to choose from and you blow it big time? My guess is that the superficiality of the show automatically dooms any relationship from blossoming. The main value promoted by the show is shallow to its core. Its all about looks.
The show is not without its annoying cliches, as well. How many times do we have to hear some woman gush about the "fairy tale"? The dates are all designed from someone's dreams and hardly reflect real life. Yeah, I would love to have a first date with a dream lady in a helicopter over the Grand Canyon followed by a candlelit dinner for two on the roof of Caesar's Palace. Are these really dates if ABC is picking up the tab? Yeah, I'd love to be one of the Bachelors and list all my dream dates locales and scenarios for ABC to pay for. This would include whale watching off the coast of Antarctica, swimming with dolphins in Hawaii, snorkling for black pearls in Tahiti, climbing to the top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge in Australia, riding elephants in Thailand, a gondola ride in Venice, a safari in South Africa's Kruger National Park, riding the Orient Express from Paris to Istanbul. Yeah...dream dates on someone else's dime. How romantic!
I haven't seen the past few seasons of The Bachelor (I missed out on the pilot and the Navy guy), but this one was "must see" because ABC decided to give the most infamous bachelor a second shot at finding love (in his first season a few years ago, he decided not to pick either lady at the final rose ceremony). Not sure why they did this, but maybe it was good from a ratings standpoint. Brad Womack seemed like a jerk last time, but in this season, he seemed like a changed man. However, hearing his annoying self talk navel gazing was a bit much. Such agonizing over this or that woman! At least he appeared to be more thoughtful about what he had to say and how his decision affects the emotional status of other women, who dreamed of a "fairy tale romance" with him.
What I like about Brad is that he is the same age as me, but he felt no need to rush into marriage at a younger age. Though he likely probably had his pick of women over the years, he didn't want to settle down with anyone, for whatever reason. Even though his twin brother, Chad (can you believe that? Twins named Chad and Brad? Bleah! I hate it when people give twins rhyming names or the same letter because it only makes it more confusing distinguishing the twins apart), and younger brother got married, Brad didn't settle for what he subconsciously knows he doesn't really want. In the age of high divorce rates, Brad shouldn't be criticized for not settling down sooner, because if he had, he'd probably add to the divorce rates. Better to marry when one feels that they met the right person to spend the rest of one's life with. For this reason, I admire Brad for his commitment to finding the right lady for him.
Ironically, the Bachelorette that I found most physically attractive (Michelle Money, pictured above) also happened to have the least attractive personality. She was very catty, gossipy, manipulative, superficial, phony, and perhaps even a bit psychotic. On the special Bachelorettes Tell All show, she admitted that she had given herself a black eye. What kind of person does such a thing? On the show, she wanted some other lady to be blamed and made out to be jealous of her, to the point of giving her a black eye? She also wanted to gain sympathy from the bachelor? What an idiot.
Ultimately, what doomed her was her pushy, bossy style, which any man would be put off by. She had the gall to go to the bachelor's room uninvited to tell him who he should not give a rose to in the next elimination ceremony! As any man would, Brad told her that she needed to trust his judgment and let him pick who he feels a bond with. When she did not receive a rose, she was so stunned that she didn't speak on camera as she was driven away in the limousine.
A friend of mine told me that this bachelorette (from Utah) is a Mormon divorcee with a child (wow, none of that came out in the show!) who has a history of whoring around the Salt Lake Valley (including with one of the Jazz basketball players). All I can say is that what a shame that beauty was wasted on such a shallow, empty whore.
The bachelorette who won Brad's heart is Emily, the beautiful lady with a young daughter. Her story about her first love is heartbreaking: she was in a relationship with a pilot whose plane went missing in a storm. She seems like a real sweetheart and I agree with Brad's pick (didn't think too much about runner-up Chantal). Hopefully these two will end up getting married. Really want to see these two be happy together in a relationship. In the After the Final Rose show, Brad seems committed to fighting hard for their relationship over whatever doubts and issues she might have. The fact that she has these unresolved issues (her disinterest in moving to Austin where he lives seems to be one major sticking point) is symptomatic of the show, in which the Bachelor has to juggle many women at once as he slowly whittles down the potentials until the final two to choose from. The show is not well designed for a Bachelor to get to know the women in a real way. Sometimes, I wonder how many of the women are just saying stuff he wants to hear so that they can get a rose. Rejection is always painful, but I imagine that rejection on television can be especially humiliating that any person would want to avoid at all costs.
Interestingly, though, during this season, there was one such lady who heard about Emily's story and was so moved that she decided to remove herself from contention because she realized that she did not want to deprive someone like Emily of the chance of winning Brad's heart. When I heard the lady say that, the first thought that came to my mind was: I want to meet that lady! She is exactly what I am looking for!! It was so odd to see someone that affected by the show that she was willing to leave. Brad didn't want her to go, because he was right. Its not about one woman depriving another of having the chance to win Brad's love. Its about finding which of the women was the best fit for a relationship with Brad. It takes two people feeling a mutual attraction as well as a deep commitment to one another's dreams, and maybe Emily wasn't the right one for him.
If I was telegenic and attractive enough to be a bachelor on the show, I'd have an easier time eliminating ladies because my first question to each of the 25 or 30 bachelorettes at the first cocktail party would be: "What do you believe about the purpose of our lives?" Based on answers, I'd easily eliminate all the superficial women and the non-spiritual and the materialistic. That would probably automatically narrow down the 25 to 3 in one swoop! Then I can focus my attention on each of the final three for however many weeks, on as many dream dates as I can con ABC into funding before I select the one I want to be with. ABC probably wouldn't like me as a Bachelor, though, because my pool of bachelorettes would look more like the Miss Universe pageant than the Miss Texas pageant that it currently looks like. I want more ethnically diverse women who don't look plastic, fake, superficial, and phony.
Anyhow, here's to Brad and Emily! Work it out, please. Give the ABC series a happy ending for once.