Soon, I will look out of my window and I will see the year’s first snow, a sign that the world keeps spinning around me. Soon fall will turn to winter, and the snow will stick, and the snow will pile up, and I’ll get to do all the wintry things I love, like staying indoors and drinking delicious warm alcohol, and then New York City’s gunk will make that snow turn black and gross, and little flecks of dog poop will get frozen into the snow. And then that snow will melt, and winter will become spring, spring summer, summer fall, and I’ll be peeking out the window again.
But with the onset of winter comes the return of America’s premier TV dating franchise. Wednesday, The Bachelor’s website released biographies for the contestants on the upcoming 21st season of the show, restarting its own magnificent life cycle. Soon, the 30 women documented in these bios will step out of limousines and fight for the love of a serial reality TV contestant. They will sprout decently large Instagram followings in an attempt to spin their semi-fame into cash by posting selfies with beauty products. Some will fade, one will transform into the Bachelorette, and a flock of migratory dudes will in turn step out of limos to woo her. Before long it will be Bachelor in Paradise season. Then the girl who won The Bachelor will tell the story of her breakup to Us Weekly. And 360-ish days from now, another crop of 30 women will have their bios posted online.
The Bachelor doesn’t need to post these bios online. I sincerely doubt that there’s anybody on this planet who wasn’t planning to watch The Bachelor who then stumbled across one of these bios and said “A 27-year-old marketing analyst from Colorado who’s inspired by Beyoncé and loves The Notebook!? I MUST SEE THIS SHOW!” But like the first flurry to fall, it’s a sign the world is changing around us, and that our lives are about to change, too.
The bios consist of a few pieces of actual information and some extremely useless questions. The women are asked what fruit they would be and why, allowing them explain how they’d be, say, a grapefruit because it has a difficult exterior, but when you peel away the layers it has a soft and lovable inside, because that’s how every fruit works. But they give us these bios because we have to be interested in these women — and maybe a little confused and horrified by them, too.
Maybe there are a few people watching this show because they’re generally interested in Nick Viall, the 36-year-old who looks 26 who will be this season’s Bachelor. But he’s a known commodity. This is his fourth stint on Bachelor shows — he was dumped on The Bachelorette twice, dumped a girl on Bachelor in Paradise but was somehow made to look sympathetic, and now he’s the finally the Bachelor.
We’re watching for everybody else — everyone we don’t already know. The Bachelor is great because it takes 30 women and drops them in a room with a guy, a camera crew, and enough wine to kill a rhino. We want those fireworks, and these bios show us how explosive these contestants are by making them seem as unstable as possible. We sifted through all 30 to find the crucial lowlights, the best examples of an extremely profitable television network framing nice women in an unflattering light.
Most Confusing Job Descriptions
The Bachelor tells us the jobs of all the contestants, because it’s relevant information as we try to determine whether we think someone is a suitable dating candidate, but we can’t always trust what we’re told. The show likes to give contestants, especially those who aren’t destined to last long, wacky-sounding job titles to make them more memorable.
They could have called Tiara (Ben’s season) a farmer, but instead they listed her job as “chicken enthusiast.” I’m sure Shawn E. (Kaitlyn’s season) has a job, and is not only an “amateur sex coach.” This guy is an actor, not a professional hipster. And, uh, “doctor” or “medical professional” would suffice, but we had to find out that Evan (JoJo’s season) was an “erectile dysfunction specialist.” Who do we have this season?
COME ON, BACHELOR PRODUCERS. You had to throw her under the bus like this? Just let her be a nurse. Who cares if she can’t find work?
I am an aspiring dolphin trainer. I would love to one day train dolphins. But that doesn’t make me a dolphin trainer, and this girl isn’t really a dolphin trainer, either. She lives in Secaucus, New Jersey. Have you ever been to Secaucus? It’s one of the first cities on the Jersey Turnpike after you take the Lincoln Tunnel out of Manhattan, and let me tell you: It doesn’t seem like there are a lot of jobs in dolphin training there. Maybe it used to be the Dolphin Training Capital of New Jersey, and politicians roll through promising to bring back dolphin-training jobs to Secaucus, but if that’s true, the tanks are long gone. Alexis played volleyball for Montclair State, which is not known for its marine biology courses.
Here’s how this went: Alexis did an interview with The Bachelor producers, and she said she liked dolphins a lot. They said: “Tell us more about the dolphins.” She said, “I really love dolphins! I’d love to be a dolphin trainer someday!”
A few months later, they’re filming her with dolphins — trained by actual honest-to-goodness dolphin trainers — for her introductory segment in the first episode. When she gets to L.A., one of the producers says, “Hey, wanna make a good first impression? We’ve got a funny idea for you …”
See if you can find Alexis in this cast picture Nick tweeted out Wednesday.
Yeah. You found her. Every other girl is wearing the dress they’ve waited their whole life to wear on national TV, and she’s in a damn costume so we can have something to giggle at for 20 minutes before she gets eliminated.
Then when they do the episode where all the contestants come back, Chris Harrison will say, “And here’s Alexis — remember her? Say, Alexis how are the dolphins?” And she’ll know she hasn’t met any dolphins, and that she hates her actual job. But if she wants America to remember her, she’ll smile, and say, “Chris, the dolphins are doing great.”
Most Frightening Contestant
I’m worried about Liz.
“I hate doing murder! Definitely not a thing I have done before and will do again.”
Technically, she doesn’t say she won’t kill someone: just that it bums her out.
Liz also says that if she could be any fruit or vegetable, she’d be a grape, because they get better with age. PSA: Grapes do not get better with age. Wine does. Do not buy grapes and leave them out for months assuming they will get better because Liz told you so.
That goes to Olivia.
Yes, she’s scared of spiders, because that fear is fleeting — much like our time on this planet, which enhances our desire to find fulfillment in this brief time we have. Olivia has impressive perspective.
From our aspiring dolphin trainer friend, Alexis:
Not bugs? Not public speaking? Not the difficulty of realizing your dream job as a dolphin trainer? Not global warming, or the threat of nuclear war, or the fact that we all die someday? E.T.? The friendly, fictional alien? The one who plays with children and rides in a bike basket?
Please don’t let Alexis see any of the movies where aliens are trying to blow up the Earth. She will not be able to handle them.
Most Disturbing Trend
We’ve got a weird underwater thing going on here. Five women responded that if they could be any animal, they’d choose to be a dolphin. We already know about Alexis, but there’s also Angela, who cites dolphins’ playfulness, Astrid, who would love to “rescue lost sailors and swim in the ocean doing tricks,” Briana, who would like to “breathe underwater, do flips, and be cute,” and Lauren, who says they’re “cute and smart and they get to live in such a beautiful environment.”
If Alexis is, in fact, an aspiring dolphin trainer, she will absolutely rip into Angela, Astrid, and Briana. The first episode of the show will just be her yelling “Really, Briana? You think dolphins can breathe underwater? WELL THEN WHY THE HELL DO THEY HAVE BLOWHOLES? DO YOU THINK THEY’RE FOR DECORATION? And Jesus, they don’t just swim around doing tricks all day. They only do tricks because I, an aspiring dolphin trainer, teach these highly intelligent animals tricks for food. In the wild, they are VICIOUS KILLING MACHINES. Just because their faces are shaped like smiles doesn’t mean they wouldn’t murder you if you were a tiny fish.”
Unfortunately, Alexis is likely not an aspiring dolphin trainer, so that probably won’t happen. But anyway. Three of these same five women also say that if they could be any fictional character, they would be Ariel from The Little Mermaid. Astrid specifies she means Ariel before she had legs, saying she would “love to explore the ocean.” Briana points out that she has “great hair, cool animal friends, and she marries a cutie.” Susannah — who actually does not want to be a dolphin — also wants to be Ariel, citing her “amazing hair” and “seashell bra.” (Both quite attainable on land, for the record.) And Alexis asks, “Who doesn’t want to be a mermaid?”
None of them are inspired by Ariel’s personality. They just want to live in the ocean. Which is weird, because The Little Mermaid is all about Ariel’s quest to leave the sea behind.
These women see Ariel living underwater and think, “Oh, that seems so neat!” while Ariel gives up her family and voice for a brief opportunity to have … what do we call them? Oh — feet. This is classic Land Privilege.
On the other hand, it kind of makes sense. After all, Ariel does risk her entire being for a chance to get a kiss from a guy she’d seen just once. Ariel would totally go on The Bachelor.
Ida Marie, for sure.
You might view Ida Marie as a foolish millennial, so uncultured that she can’t name a single book or author. I view her as a lover of knowledge. When asked her favorite, she declines to answer, sagely understanding that singling out any one book would be futile when there are so many she has yet to read. If you judged Ida Marie, maybe it’s you who needs to read more books.
I also recommend Jasmine B., whose favorite author is Steve Harvey. I don’t primarily think of Steve as an author, but Michelangelo always saw himself as a sculptor even as he painted the Sistine Chapel.
Most Philosophically Inclined
Josephine believes she has solved the riddle — as all the other contestants condemn themselves to delicious deaths, her repugnance ensures her safety.
But, young philosopher, the purpose of the fruit is to be eaten. It is only then that they pass on their seeds to begin the process of rebirth. By choosing not to get eaten, you may have prolonged your own life, but as you die a lonely, rotting death, you will realize the cost.
Do not shy away from your purpose. In this case, it is to attempt to date a man on TV for our enjoyment. Your heart may be broken, but your pain will bring joy to others, and ultimately bring you fulfillment.
Here’s Danielle L., a small-business owner. Wow! Congrats on your small business!
And here’s Corinne, who is listed simply as a business owner. Not a small-business owner. Just a business owner.
Maybe Danielle L. runs a lemonade stand and maybe Corinne is CEO of J.P. Morgan. Either way, The Bachelor completely dissed Danielle L.’s business. Mind you, Corinne is just 24 and Danielle L. is 27. Three fewers years and Corinne has a business that’s stunting all over Danielle L.’s life.
I hope that they’re the final two contestants, and in the last rose ceremony Nick says, “Danielle L. … I’ve grown to love you..” and her heart leaps. Then he says, “but I just can’t marry somebody whose business is such TRASH. Come on, Corinne, let’s make millions,” and they furiously make out in front of Danielle L., and then Corinne buys Danielle L.’s business just because she can, and fires Danielle L., and then Corinne and Nick get to host their own version of Shark Tank where sometimes they invest in your business but sometimes they say, “Sorry — this business sounds like a real Danielle,” and a trap door opens up and the business owner falls through the floor.
There’s also Lauren, a “law school graduate,” and Rachel, an attorney. We get it: This show is produced by Lauren’s parents, and they can’t believe they paid all that money for law school and she still isn’t putting that degree to good use.
Most Obvious Winner
Olivia, an apparel sales representative from Nashville, tells us she tried out for her high school football team and made it as a kicker.
Football players with Nashville ties are 1-for-1 at winning in this world. Book it.