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Dominating ‘The Bachelor’ in Four Easy Steps

First, have your nanny serve you sliced cucumbers. Next, remove your top in front of all the other contestants. Follow that up by referring to your genitalia as a precious metal. Then, prosper.

(ABC)
(ABC)

There are only two good sports in the world. One is that awesome handball thing from the Olympics. The other is The Bachelor, a show that features 30 women competing to gain as many Instagram followers as they can before they’re eliminated by a slightly above-average guy who once got dumped on national television. This year is the best yet, because the bachelor, Nick Viall, got dumped on The Bachelorette … twice! Every Tuesday we’ll be telling you who, uh, rose to the occasion on the previous night’s episode. So, can we steal you for a sec?

MVP: Corinne

We’re only two episodes in, and Corinne is everybody’s least-favorite character. Her actions and the way the show was edited combined to make her the least-likable person alive. But she’s the main topic of conversation — and that’s what’s most important, both for us and for Corinne.

Corinne first makes her presence felt during the episode’s first group date, a photo shoot where each woman is dressed in a different style of wedding outfit. She’s visibly and audibly upset that Brittany, another contestant, got to go topless, while she had to wear a bikini top. I’ve heard people on this show complain countless times about the outfits other people are wearing; I think Corinne is the first to claim she is the only person who would look good naked.

So, during her shoot, she proceeds to take her top off and make Nick hold her boobs. This “wins” her the photo shoot in the eyes of the judge, “world-renowned photographer Franco Lacosta,” who might be a world-renowned photographer but also could be a dude wearing sunglasses, a fake mustache, and a fake goatee. His qualifications as a photographer appear to boil down to having an accent and saying “yes — you are having fun” to nearly naked girls. I am undecided.

Later on, Corinne decides to take advantage of the Rule of Bachelor Theft. As everybody who watches the show knows, any contestant can walk up to the bachelor at any point and say, “Can I steal you for a sec?” and the bachelor must cease his conversation to talk to her. Nobody ever says that this is an official rule, but considering everybody instantly goes along with it, I assume the punishment for not going along with it is death — or worse, a lifelong ban from appearing on Bachelor spin-off shows.

Corinne usurps two conversations, ensuring she talks to Nick three times before some women talk to him once. However, she gets upset when Taylor flips the tables and returns to finish her conversation. Corinne angrily explains that “the way I go about things is very classy.” She makes a critical philosophical distinction: Her interruptions were just general attempts to seek time with Nick, but Taylor’s “re-interrupt[ion]” was “very directed toward Corinne,” and therefore showed malice. (By then, she’d begun to talk in the third person.)

Corinne very nearly pops the show’s catchphrase cherry with a speech about how she’s not here to make friends, only to get Nick. And it works! Even though the majority of the contestants on the show now hate her, the plan works: She gets a rose from Nick, keeping her safe for another week. The old “Hold My Boobs” strategy never fails.

In the first episode, we saw Corinne, who is 24, asking her live-in nanny to bring her a bowl of sliced cucumbers. Then, in a teaser for the remainder of the season, she’s shown yelling at other contestants about her and her dad’s “multimillion-dollar business” and discussing her “platinum vajeen.”

In summary: Corinne is blond, egotistical, wants everybody to know how rich she is, (supposedly) inherited millions from her father, and enjoys items coated in precious metals, as well as talking about her genitalia. She argues the awful things she does are “classy” while painting anybody who attempts to use similar tactics as being uniquely biased against her. And in spite of her immense unpopularity, she keeps winning. She’s making The Bachelor great again.

Most Disturbing Moment: Liz

In this snippet, Liz reveals that she’s “carrying a secret.” The secret, as you may remember from the first episode, is that she slept with Nick nine months before this season was filmed. Here’s how they make her look secretive:

She’s standing in front of some fruit with a knife, suspiciously looking around. It was good work by the show’s editors. They had a segment of Liz talking about a secret, found a clip of Liz looking as if she had something to hide, and matched them up perfectly.

Unfortunately, they revealed her much larger secret.

(ABC)
(ABC)

As you can see, there’s a completely motionless body lying behind Liz as she holds the knife. I didn’t catch this on my first watch, but then I saw it on a re-watch, and watched it again and again. Now I wonder: If I were to rewatch every episode of The Bachelor from Season 1 on, how many dead bodies would I find, hidden in the background of seemingly serene shots? Is America’s most beloved dating series actually a horror franchise?

Most viewers probably saw Liz peeking around and interpreted her as thinking, “I hope nobody finds out I slept with Nick!” But now we know. Her thought was more likely closer to this: “There can be no witnesses. If anybody comes in here to grab a piece of cantaloupe off this craft-services table they will be my next victim.”

Not convinced? Let’s look back at Liz’s contestant bio on ABC’s website.

If I never had to ______, I would be very happy. Kill someone.

I can picture her contestant interview. “Come on,” the ABC producer asks. “What’s something you really hate doing?”

They’re on to me, Liz thinks. I must say something to throw them off my trail. What would somebody who isn’t a murderer say?

“I hate … killing people,” Liz says. “I especially do not desire the death of innocents. While I would gladly wear the flesh of deserving victims, I would furiously scrub my garments if they were sullied by the blood of the innocent. But if a bystander interferes with my task, they shall die. My mission must be completed.”

“Alright, I’m just gonna put down, ‘Liz hates killing people,’” the ABC producer says. “See you in L.A.!”

Worst Exit: Also Liz

If Liz plans on continuing her killing spree, she’ll have to do it off-camera. She was the only person sent home on the second episode, after Nick finally had a one-on-one conversation with her. Normally it’s the Bachelor blogger’s job to question whether a contestant is actually seeking a relationship or is on the show only because she just wants 15 minutes of fame and 15,000 Instagram followers, but Nick one-upped me by actually asking Liz on camera. I guess a dude who’s been on the Bachelor franchise four times has a pretty good idea of when people just want to be on TV.

Nick sends Liz home right from a group date, and offers to walk her out. I don’t know why it’s considered more gentlemanly to walk someone out after breaking up with them. Honestly, it seems almost cruel. But it’s standard Bachelor operating procedure for breakups that don’t take place during rose ceremonies. And Nick is terrible at it.

Nick walked her to an elevator, kinda shoved her in, then went to a location where he could watch her actually leaving. Buddy, we can see the staircase. You couldn’t just walk her down?

Most Normal Date: Danielle M.

Danielle M. is selected for the show’s first one-on-one date. It was boring — but only because it was two good-looking people revealing personal information to each other and just generally being compatible. Who wants to watch a show about that?

The date starts out with a sightseeing cruise on a helicopter, but then the helicopter lands on a yacht. Do yachts typically have helipads? Why not just fly to the dock where the yacht is departing from? Who has so much money that “Ugh, I just wish I could skip over the first few hours of yacht rides!” is a problem worth spending millions on? Is there a justification for this besides medical emergencies that I’m missing? Why has nobody ever rapped about this?

Anyway, during a quiet moment, Nick turns to Danielle and explains that after the show’s wild first few days, “this is the first normal day of dating” he’s been able to have.

Yeah, that’s normal. It reminds me a lot of my first date with my girlfriend, when I piloted the Space Shuttle Enterprise into the stratosphere and then flew it inside of a hollowed-out volcano where I had a romantic dinner arranged for us. Or was that our second date? They all blend together.

We joke about how Bachelor relationships don’t last. Perhaps it’s because the show is a sham, perhaps it’s a statement on our society, or perhaps it’s because it’s really hard to have an actual relationship with someone when landing a chopper on a yacht is your normal.

Worst Friend: Christen

Liz decided to confide her secret in one person. The secret about the sex, not the secret about the murder. Only you and I know about the murder secret, and, wait, now that I think about it, Liz is probably going to come for all of us next. Look, my bad. Next time I’ll put SPOILER ALERT: READING THIS ARTICLE MAY MAKE YOU THE TARGET OF A PSYCHOPATHIC KILLER at the top. Although I suppose there probably won’t be a next time.

Anyway, the person she confides in is Christen, who swears her confidentiality to Liz: “I would never say a word about it, and they wouldn’t even know that I knew.”

Christen immediately spits Liz’s secret out during an interview, and then later tells Nick that Liz told her about their history unprompted. That revelation then directly precedes Liz’s elimination from the show.

Here’s my advice: If you have a secret, don’t tell it to somebody you met 48 hours ago while in a competition on a television show where everybody is wearing microphones and constantly being filmed.

Best Commitment to a Gimmick: Josephine

The episode’s final group date goes to the Museum of Broken Relationships. (It’s a real place! Although it’s more like an experimental art exhibit than a museum.) They’re stunned to find a couple loudly breaking up in the middle of the museum, only to realize — surprise! — that they were actors, and that on today’s date they have to “break up” with Nick on stage.

After a couple of relatively vanilla breakups, Josephine opts to slap Nick.

If you remember, Josephine had the best power move Week 1 when she forced Nick to eat a cold hot dog within 30 seconds of meeting him. Every other character on the show is fawning over Nick, and Josephine is out here mentally degrading him until he acquiesces to her will. This is a dating strategy called “negging,” and the dudes who have less sex than anybody else on the internet swear by it.

Book it now: The last episode of this show will take place in some romantic tropical spot like Aruba. Josephine is going to force Nick to sit outside until he gets a brutal sunburn, and then she’ll rub a cheese grater on his back until he proposes to her. She will turn him down, and the show will be canceled forever.