Every woman’s got a guilty pleasure. Mine is watching juicy reality TV shows that feature women catfighting over some dubious prize they may or may not want. And I’m inviting you to join me. Surprise! The Bachelor is back for its 18th season – just in time to brighten up your January. All you have to do is become a sap like me, and you too can look forward to Mondays when you’ll be entertained by 27 (count em, 27!) beautiful bachelorettes as they all vie (and cry and practically die) to win the heart of their mystery man.
Of course, there are arguments against tuning in. Clearly, the producers want the ladies to act like anything but ladies. You can almost see them grinning backstage as the camera records manicured nails reaching out to scratch off false lashes and shaking their heads as the poor roseless stand there dripping mascara and hiccuping about what they did wrong. You can’t help but feel as if you know these women. Sometimes I get so engrossed that I start shouting at the TV: Hey, Pal! You’re not the only man in town, you know! (Then I catch myself because oh yes, in this world, apparently he is).
In the end, though, the histrionics are everything. They are what this show is built on. Oh, and the payoff: the undeniable romance of a live proposal. Listen up all you people peering down from your high horses, we Bachelor fans are the majority here. There were almost 9 million viewers glued to the show’s premiere episode and we’re here to stay. Every Monday, I’ll be on the couch all transfixed, armed with my popcorn and my list of top picks. I’m addicted, just like all the rest of the women who have kept this show on the air for 12 years. Call us saps or hopeless romantics, but either way, come join us. Why, you ask?
Why You Should Be a Bachelor Addict Like Me
1. The opening scene, where the women exit limos all dolled up. is a modern-day Miss America pageant lineup. Fess up, when you were little you loved the evening gown competition, didn’t you?
2. Deep down, we all want to believe in Love At First Sight. Even better, we want to be there to witness it – and pretend it’s happening to us.
3. It’s gotta take guts of steel to go on national television and bare your everything, from the inside out. Leaving aside the question of why I might want to, I could never, ever do it. I’m way too insecure.
4. Chemistry is oh-so-tricky. You just never know who will find whom attractive and why. Watching it heat up between people you didn’t expect is a study in human nature.
5. Living and competing with a group of women would make anyone nuts. Why watch a scripted drama, where actors are reading lines, when there is real live drama to be had just a channel away?
6. Inevitably, there is at least one bachelorette who, despite the frenzy to be first, realizes the guy is just not for her. In that sobering moment, we fans realize this is not just a game. It’s TV life.
7. There is nothing sexier than watching a grown man cry. Unless it’s watching a hot grown man cry. With an accent. Without his shirt.
8. Meeting your match is a matter of timing. To all naysayers, I say this: Love can happen anywhere. And it does. The Bachelor shows have spawned marriages and kids. Take that.
9. As sadistic as it is, following that woman through love all the way to her ultimate rejection on the eve of her fantasy engagement is right up there with the climax of any novel. It’s voyeuristic gold. Just try looking away.
10. For the lucky two who do end up matched for life (as rare as that may be), there’s not just a story for your grandchildren to hear, but a recording of how love blossoms despite the odds. Sigh. Yep, I’m hopeless.
So tell us, do you watch? Why do you love it?