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A Proposal for Nick Viall’s Quest to Stay on TV Until He Dies

From ‘Dancing With the Stars’ to eternity

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

The first time we saw Nick Viall was in May 2014 as a contestant on Andi Dorfman’s season of The Bachelorette. He was that season’s nemesis, the guy who all the other bachelors single out because he’s so clearly not there “for the right reasons.” Nonetheless, Nick made it to the final two and cemented his status as a Bachelor franchise villain when he not-so-low-key shamed Dorfman during the reunion episode for having sex with him. Since then, he’s gotten more work on ABC than anyone not named Shonda Rhimes. In 2015, he returned as a contestant on The Bachelorette, once again making it all the way to the final two; he didn’t appear on the show the next year, but did join the cast of the Bachelor spinoff, Bachelor in Paradise. Keeping the streak alive, Nick was then chosen to be the Bachelor for the 2017 season.

And he’s only getting started. On Wednesday, ABC officially announced that Viall will be participating in the next season of Dancing With the Stars, which will premiere in March.

Most Bachelor contestants are on TV for only three months or so — Nick is going on three years. He’s basically the Robert Downey Jr. of the Bachelor universe, dipping in and out as both a unifying force (for the franchise) and a reminder (for himself) that he’s still kicking. This season on The Bachelor, Corinne’s father wondered aloud what Nick’s plan was for after the show. Nick didn’t say as much, but it’s becoming clear that his goal is to remain on TV for the rest of his life. To that end, I’ve put together a year-by-year itinerary for Nick that can act as a guide to achieving his dreams.

2018: ‘A Bachelor Wedding’

10 episodes

Nick and whoever he chooses — it’s definitely Vanessa, right? — get married on national TV. The Bachelor has done wedding specials before (for example, Sean Lowe and Catherine Giudici’s nuptials), but this would be a full season of television devoted to the event. Picking flower arrangements, nonessential meetings with Neil Lane, more time in Waukesha, Wisconsin — the whole nine yards.

2019: ‘Quantico’ Guest-Star Spot

Three episodes

I mean, they already planted the seeds for this.

2020: ‘A Bachelor Baby’

10 episodes

2021: ‘Celebrity Marriage Rehab’

10 episodes

2022: Winter Olympics Correspondent

Two weeks

Remember how Ryan Seacrest hosted a late-night show at the Rio Olympics last year? That’s Nick’s gig for the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing. It’s cool — he owns a lot of chunky sweaters.


2023–2024: The New Matt Damon Figure in a Jimmy Kimmel Feud

Three to eight episodes, one awards show

After the world finally decides the Matt Damon–Jimmy Kimmel feud is played out, Kimmel recycles the gag with Nick. Everyone accepts it as new. The joke peaks when Kimmel, hosting the SAG Awards, tricks Nick into signing divorce papers.

2025: ‘We’re Getting Remarried: A Bachelor Event’

One episode

2026: ‘Celebrity Home Makeover’

One episode

2027: ‘A Bachelor Reunion’

Six episodes

Nick thinks he and Vanessa are going to Hawaii to celebrate 10 years together; Corinne and her nanny Raquel think they’re going to Hawaii to shoot a buddy comedy. Twist! It’s actually a six-episode show reuniting Nick and Corinne, full of nostalgia, temptation, and bowls of cucumber.

2028: Presidential Run

Eight to 12 months of TV coverage

The four years following Donald Trump’s presidency — in which a Democrat from Virginia holds office — are so boring that cable news ratings plummet and The Washington Post folds. Sensing a market inefficiency, Nick announces his candidacy for the president of the United States. “Too soon,” everyone responds.

2029–2030: ‘Nick at Nite’

Approximately 200 episodes

The presidential run has Nick’s brand recognition at an all-time high, and he was very OK when he hosted the Winter Olympics aftershow, so TBS takes a chance and hires him to host its new late-night show. However, Nick is let go rather quickly when Conan O’Brien decides to unretire at 67. Asked why he came back, Conan says, “I’ve been waiting to Jay Leno someone for the last 20 years.”

2031: ‘NCIS: Omaha’

10 episodes

2032: ‘The Unauthorized Bachelor Story’

One TV movie

Nick stars as himself in Lifetime’s very unnecessary movie about The Bachelor. Very meta.

2033: UPS Spokesman

One ad campaign

Remember that guy who stood in front of a whiteboard and drew stuff, and then it moved!? Nick takes on that role when UPS recycles the idea, hoping that no one remembers the original campaign. The ads aren’t exactly what Nick had in mind when he dreamt of staying on TV forever, but then he realizes his commercial is one of the four that run repeatedly during March Madness.

2034–2037: ‘So You Wanna Be the Next Bachelor?’

18 episodes

In a stroke of genius, ABC producers create a reality competition show in order to select the star of its other reality competition show and tap Nick to host. It’s all a little much though — like how ABC also beat Who Wants to Be a Millionaire into the ground — and the Bachelor feeder show is canceled after three cycles.

2038–2039:Saint Nick’

52 episodes

A new streaming site called MixFix emerges, producing only wholesome content. It’s a huge hit; apparently, after decades of cynicism and dank-but-harsh memes, people were thirsty for some heartwarming programming. Nick signs on with MixFix for Saint Nick, a series of 15-minute episodes in which he just does really thoughtful things. The episode where Nick cleans out an elderly woman’s basement becomes MixFix’s most-watched episode ever. “It’s not technically TV,” Nick tells himself, “but the times are changing.”

2040: Contestant on NBC’s ‘Can You Kill This Robot?’

One episode

2041: ‘Watch What Happens Live’

One episode

Fact: Andy Cohen is a vampire who will live forever.

2042: ‘A Bachelor Funeral’

One episode

Nick and hordes of other memorable Bachelor contestants come together for a somber remembrance and touching celebration of the life of Chris Harrison.

2043-??: ‘The Bachelor & The Bachelorette’

∞ episodes

Following the untimely passing of Chris Harrison, Nick becomes the host of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. The Bob Barker of The Bachelor, Nick makes for a great and willing host, even though he’s in his twilight years.