The New Premise of the Bachelorette Will Horrify You

by Emily Warman


Hello, fellow humans who watch The Bachelor(ette) very much despite themselves. My name is Emily, and I'll be recapping the forthcoming season of The Bachelorette, which premieres May 18th on ABC. A few thoughts about the premise of this season before everything is described as "amazing," helicopter pilots enter their busy season, and double personal pronoun mistakes overwhelm you: The concept of two bachelorettes is offensive, misogynistic, and wrong.

On the After the Final Rose post-show following Monday night's Bachelor finale, Bachelor sensei Chris Harrison, riding high after the ratings success of Chris Soules's season, gleefully informed a confused live audience that there would be two bachelorettes on the upcoming season: Kaitlyn Bristowe and Britt Nilsson, who both recently competed on The Bachelor.  As it stands, on the opening night 25 men will meet both women and decide, to quote Harrison, "who will make the better wife." That's correct: In 2015 25 men will meet two women who already competed against one another and decide based on one evening who is better wife material (i.e. who is hotter).

Apparently, the beleaguered Bachelor producers just couldn't decide who would make a better wife, and Bachelor Nation was split down the middle. Except here's the thing: They weren't. On After the Final Rose, Britt's name was met with polite applause and boos, and Kaitlyn's name elicited full-on cheers. I've done an embarrassing deep dive into twitter replies, and the clear favorite is Kaitlyn. She's even got Anna Kendrick on her side. My take? The producers wanted Britt and the viewers wanted Kaitlyn. To the thunderdome we go!

I just can't get over the fact that 25 men will decide who is going to be the next Bachelorette. The Bachelorette is the antidote to the Bachelor: A woman gets the autonomy to wade through a bunch of weirdos and choose someone she will Instagram as her #MCM before they break up in three months and both go on to endorse weight loss supplements for more money than I make. It's a strange choice, but a choice nonetheless. To completely take all agency out of the process is wrong and tone deaf, and I'm offended. It's downright vile, a word I typically reserve for describing frisee. I know, I know: I'm talking about The Bachelor, a show devoted to bizarre Madonna/whore complexes and the idea of falling in love with someone in six weeks who is dating multiple people that you live with and form friendships with. And if I can be offended being fully cognizant of all that, it's bad.

I'm wondering how this will actually play out, because the reaction from viewers and former Bachelor/ettes was not great, Bob! Here's golden boy Sean Lowe, a born-again virgin (not a thing) who married the winner of his season, Catherine Guidice, on-air last year:



His wife was equally displeased:

 
And these are people who quite honestly owe everything they own to this franchise. It also doesn't make sense to immediately alienate a good portion of the audience who preferred one woman over the other on night one. What's more, they've already cast the men for this season. Filming begins in around a week. The producers have obviously stacked the deck for one woman, and that's downright cruel. The idea of being rejected on-air by more than even five men at once is chilling. If that goes into double digits? Good thing there's a full-time psychologist for the show. For a series that is supposedly devoted to finding love (again: I know), this is also not fair to the men, many of whom will be stuck on a reality dating show with one woman they didn't choose. What a time to be alive!

I personally think they'll end up going with two women for the entire season (what if two men get roses! the group date possibilities!) to escape the feminist roar that followed this announcement, but who knows. I'm disgusted and I'm in, ABC.


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