In defense of The Bachelor

Mikaela Van Soelen —Staff Writer

I have been a longtime fan of The Bachelor; some might say a seasoned expert. With an older sister and a mom who are especially into reality TV, I have been on The Bachelor grind for at least ten years. Is 100% of me totally proud of that? Probably not. Have I daydreamed about what it would be like to be on The Bachelor? 100 percent yes. Now it is time for me to put on my boxing gloves and defend fake reality and over-rated television drama for the show that many of us know and love. 

There is not a right or wrong reason as to why someone watches The Bachelor. We can agree the show is tacky and overly dramatic. Yet many of us spend season after season watching the same plot, listening to Chris Harrison say, “this is the final rose of the night” and ending disappointed that our top picks got sent home. Why do people continue to watch it, and is it okay to be a fan of the show?

Although The Bachelor franchise is listed as a reality TV show, I would like to argue that it falls fall into more of a fantasy/reality mix. Watching The Bachelor provides a break from reality and enters us into a world that none of us are familiar with. We watch it in fascination because nobody does this outside of the show. There is no such thing as 25 women falling for you, and I am truly sorry for anybody who believed that before reading this. But now you have accepted that fact, you may watch The Bachelor peacefully knowing that it is, in fact, not a reality TV show. It is its own genre that provides entertainment for normal people, like us, who will never experience a one-on-one date that leads to a secluded space with a random band singing for us. This would be weird for a normal person, but to watch other people do it is priceless. 

This love-sick television show has also provided reasons for people around the world to come together—no matter their age or gender—and talk about something we can all relate to. Everyone shares the same inward desires for connection, and this show allows us to watch connection happen right before our eyes. Bachelor nights encourage us to invite friends over, make some popcorn, and unplug for those forty-five minutes.

Thanks to moments like “champagne gate” from Pilot Pete’s season, or Queen Victoria from this bachelor season, we can laugh and find silly ways to bond through The Bachelor franchise. And whether or not you are a fan of the show or not, it is always something that can be fun to discuss with our peers. Even if the show does not serve a direct benefit, it can be nice to sit back, relax, and watch two girls scream at each other over being on reality TV for the “wrong reasons”. The Bachelor might depict an inaccurate way to find love, but it does not take away from the pure entertainment and high-quality commentary that goes on in a dorm room or apartment.

Therefore, it is okay to not have a conviction toward why we watch The Bachelor. The importance is for people to understand The Bachelor is not a true form of reality. As strange as it seems, this show brings people together and gives us a reason to just be. For me, it is just enough to keep me hooked.

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