Last night the new season of The Bachelor started.
I was counting down the hours all day. Banjo Man even went out to buy special “Episode One, Meet & Greet At The Mansion”, snacks.
I had my notepad ready. Tequila. Chocolate.
To give you a little background:
Ben was on the horrid Kaitlyn As “Bachelorette” show last summer. He was sweet, mature, kind and funny and so very, very normal.
I hope he stays that way, but he has to sort through 28 women (and some of them will be slightly nuts) to hopefully find his true love.
Yes, I just wrote “true love”. That doesn’t happen often on this tv franchise, but I’m optimistic.
The show begins with Ben in his hometown of Indiana. I think he is on a float at the high school homecoming parade. He visits with his parents, who also seem very normal and pleasant. And then he hugs them goodbye and heads to California and life as a reality tv star. He behaves in a very sweet, mature, kind and funny way.
And here come the profiles of a select group of women:
Lauren: an incredibly gorgeous flight attendant from southern California. She seems sweet, though, despite the movie star looks. Says she doesn’t date much. (Huh???)
Caila: cute brunette from Boston. She’s in software sales (as is Ben) and is very well spoken and funny. Broke up with her boyfriend when she saw Ben on tv and realized she was more attracted to a guy on tv than she was to a guy in Massachusetts.
Jubilee: beautiful black Army vet from Florida (I think she’d be perfect for Sarge!) who says people don’t “get her”, due to the fact that she’s a soldier. Her bikini-clad body shows a warrior who could bench press both Lauren and Caila.
Mandi: incredibly weird dentist, age 28, from Portland, Oregon. I’m sure she was included so the producers could make the most of her strange personality. She says she has to check men’s teeth because she could never date anyone who didn’t brush and floss enough.
Emily and Haley: twins from Las Vegas, age 22. They’re pretty and bubbly, tall and blond. Banjo Man thinks they are show girls. I don’t. But they have impressive false eyelashes and hair extensions.
Amanda: sweet girl with a baby voice, age 25. Divorced with two little girls (ages 2 and 3) and is on the show to find them a father (this is where I roll my eyes and tell Banjo Man that she should be with her children and not away from home for weeks in order to be on tv trying to impress a stranger).
Tiara: another loony. She looks great but she has chickens. Chickens as pets. Chickens as best friends. One sleeps with her. She confides that she is torn between staying home with her chickens and going off to find love. She seems more attached to those hens than Amanda is to her babies.
It’s all very odd.
Samantha (call me “Sam”): age 26, from Florida. Another normal young woman with a cute voice. Seems shy, which won’t do her any favors in the Mansion. She’s a lawyer.
Fast Forward to the Front of the Bachelor Mansion:
Host Chris Harrison and Bachelor Ben stand in front of the fountain before the first limousine arrives. Chris asks if there is anything Ben needs before the show starts. Ben asks for a hug.
It’s all very odd.
I’ll give you the highlights and the numerical order of arrival (which factors into my picks for Top Four, according to the editing and Ben’s body language).
- Lauren B., the gorgeous flight attendant. Ben has a stunned look on his face. He can’t believe his good fortune.
- Caila, the gal from Boston. She leaps into his arms, which was cute.
- Jamie, bartender from Canada
- Samantha the lawyer, wearing a killer red lace dress
- Jubilee, our soldier.
- Amanda, the divorced single mom with two kids
- Lace, gorgeous brunette (a Banjo Man Favorite) who is in real estate and kissed Ben on the mouth so she would get the first kiss. I think Ben liked that. Her dress was also lace (possibly a navy blue) and stunning.
- Lauren R., math teacher from Texas who forgot to tell Ben her name
- Shushanna, who spoke nothing but Russian and wore a bangly dress and was annoying
- Leah, event planner who brought a football and then bent over and displayed her silk-covered rear when she hiked the ball to Ben. Ben loved it. Banjo Man loved it.
- JoJo, who got out of the limo wearing a unicorn head over her head. I didn’t get it.
- Lauren H, kindergarten teacher who throws a dried up bouquet of flowers for Ben to catch. She caught the bridal bouquet at a wedding the week before and thinks that Ben is her future groom. She is blond and extremely thin–or just very tiny?
- Laura, lovely redhead in a blue dress, says her nickname is “Red Velvet”, which sounded stripperish to me.
- Mandi, the nutso dentist. She appears with a giant rose on her head. Seriously, it’s red and twice as big as her head and mounted on a headband. This girl is an attention freak. She reminds me of Lucy (past season), who was always taking her clothes off and describing herself as a “free spirit”. Note: free spirits can be annoying.
- Haley, a twin.
- Emily, a twin. They popped out of the limo at the same time and Ben’s expression was priceless.
- Maegan, who arrives in western boots (my kind of gal!) and walking a mini-horse. She tells Ben she likes beer and whiskey and camping and fishing and football and trail rides. I love her.
- Brianna, who brings a picnic basket filled with bread and tells Ben she is a gluten-free nutritionist and then proceeds to slap the baguettes against the fountain and toss all the evil bread onto the slate patio. Quite the entrance.
- Izzy, a graphic designer who wears a one-piece pajama outfit and says, “I am the one-sie for you.” Gag. Bad idea, Izzy. Have you seen the other women in their gorgeous lace and silk and satin gowns?
- Rachel, arrives on a hoverboard. I suppose we should be glad it didn’t catch on fire in front of Ben.
- Jessica, nice normal accountant from Florida.
- Tiara, the one who loves chickens.
- Lauren, “LB”.
- Jackie, giggly. Brings a Save the Date card for their wedding. Ben thinks that is clever.
- Olivia, news anchor from Austin, TX who quit her dream job to be on the show. She is totally as beautiful at Lauren B (the flight attendant) in her silver dress. Ben is speechless.
Then Ben calls his parents to say hello.
Odd but sweet.
Becca and Amber, from past seasons, arrive later during the cocktail party. Ho-hum.
Not much happens at the party except that Olivia From Austin gets the First Impression Rose, Lace gets drunk and possessive (red flags, Ben, red flags!!) and Rose Head struts around telling everyone she is a dentist.
Not a lot of interaction was shown between Ben and the women. At least not as much as other shows, so it was hard to get an “attraction” reading. I think he likes blonds. I think there were a number of women the producers demanded he keep around, to provide drama and comic relief.
My picks for Top Four are: Lauren B., Caila, Olivia and Leah.
I am wondering why Lauren B. was the first one to be profiled and the first one out of the limo. She is also the first one to get a rose at the first Rose Ceremony. Those are significant edits. Could it be that they will actually show us a love story this time around?
I hope so.