Is this like …the worst season of this show, in like, ages or what? *looks around* I mean, The Bachelor isn’t exactly prestige TV, but it’s usually at least more interesting and less infuriating than this.
Or hey, maybe we’ve grown. Maybe the pandemic has opened our eyes. If so, well, getting through the rest of this is going to be rough. But we’re gonna try, for you.
It seems like normally, we would be talking about who we’re rooting for in the end. However, this season, so many people have been so despicable, I’m not even sure there have been that many people worth rooting for just yet. So let’s go the other way. Who are the worst contestants this season? Of all the despicable people we saw this week, who do you think is the most toxic?
Jade: We’re definitely spoilt for choice on this one. I know the producers and editors cut footage to make things more “dramatic” but I cannot imagine for the life of me what they think makes any of this must see television. If I hadn’t already agreed to do these roundtables, I’d never watch another episode of The Bachelor after this terrible episode. The worst have to be Victoria, and Anna. As for the third…I don’t know, I wouldn’t want to know either MJ or Serena C. in real life. You don’t get points for acknowledging something as a baseless rumor (and that it’s not right to spread rumors) while you spread rumors. Ladies, you’re supposed to be in your 20s at least. Don’t you think it’s time to leave high school behind?
Lizzie: I mean, asking this question is basically just asking to talk about Victoria, who has been the absolute worst in such a consistent manner. But the thing about Victoria is that it seems to me that she went in wanting to be the worst – not really to “win Matt’s heart,” or whatever, and that kinda makes her not the worst, if you know what I mean? If you’re trying to be awful, are you really as bad as some other women who are not trying and end up being as bad as you? I think not. Or, I want to hope Victoria is doing this on purpose and go from there, I guess.
So, I’m with Jade on this one, Anna’s whole “I recognize Brittany and I know she’s trouble because we’re both from Chicago,” is over the top bad. Like …we all know how big Chicago is, girl. Continuing on this trend makes you just as bad as Victoria, and spreading the rumor that Brittany is an escort just to look better makes you the most awful person of the week, by far. Which is really a hard thing when your competition IS VICTORIA.
Have any of the contestants made a particularly good impression on you? Have you changed your mind about any of them over the course of the season?
Jade: I’ll admit that I didn’t expect it, but Katie definitely has surprised me (in a good way!) over the last few episodes. I still say anyone who taps my arm with a dildo better be ready for the repercussions, but she’s been far less catty and way more supportive of her fellow contestants than anyone else has been. Have any of the other girls even attempted to defend the newest victims targeted by this pack of hyenas? And you know what? She didn’t owe Victoria a damn thing, and I’m glad she refused to apologize.
Lizzie: Eh, there are some who haven’t made a negative one, if that helps? And I did cheer for Katie and the whole “I ain’t going to apologize” thing. I also enjoyed Chelsea in this episode, and Brittany had enough sass to endear her to me, at least for the moment. She also seemed focused on Matt instead of the drama, which I guess is a nice change.
Five new contestants joined the show (some very briefly) this week. Was it worth it? What, if anything, do you think they bring to the show?
Jade: I mean, most of the contestants on now are either completely loathsome or entirely forgettable, so while I spent every promo leading up to this episode wondering what is the point?, I guess it at least provides the opportunity for a couple more people I could actually root for to join the season. I guess that’s a good thing?
Lizzie: I’m pretty sure this was a stunt just so we could get that moment where Victoria steals the crown from “Former Miss Puerto Rico,” which WTF Victoria? Also, kudos to you Catalina, if “Former NFL Player” can be a title, “Former Miss Puerto Rico” counts too.
Let’s talk about the bullying in the show this week. For the sake of ratings, the producers of The Bachelor allowed contestants to fling rumors and speculation that Brittany is an escort. On national television. What culpability do you think the producers have to the bullying that’s played out over the season so far and the rumors that are being lobbed against Brittany now?
Jade: I absolutely think they’re culpable in this entire fiasco, and it’s the primary reason I would be happy to never see another episode of this godforsaken show again. Don’t tell me they’re not offscreen instigating this stuff. Random “people in Chicago” are telling Anna these things? If Brittany’s presence on the show was such a surprise, how would anyone know to say jack shit to Anna about her. And even if that part of the story is legitimate (which I don’t really believe for a second), the people in charge of the show are making conscious decisions about what to air and what to cut. They’re also the ones setting – or not setting, as seems to be the case in this pile of steaming crap – the “rules” for the show. They could absolutely draw a line between what could be deeped “good drama” on any fucking planet and the straight-up bullying that has gone on and continues to go on with this show.
It isn’t right that in this day and age, a person’s life could be destroyed by allegations that they do or did sex work in the past. However, the fact that it isn’t right doesn’t mean that it isn’t true. People have been fired and ostracized from their community for so little as posting risque photos online or giving exes naked photos of themselves. It shouldn’t matter if these allegations are true or not, but we live in a world where it could matter. It could be incredibly detrimental to Brittany’s entire life post-show. And even if the producers aren’t fanning the flames to make for more salacious television (and I’m sure they are, because the accusations were in fucking promotions for the season ahead), they’re airing them. And they’re airing the footage in a way that gives the most cursory of nods to the fact they could be straight up bullshit before cutting to more footage of the vicious gossip being spread. With the way the show handles it seeming to condone this behavior as good drama more than recognizing that this is a person’s life, you fucking assholes. The more I think about it, the more absolutely livid I get. This is supposed to be must see television? I changed my mind. Anna’s the worst person on the show. Victoria’s annoying, self-centered, and spoiled, but Anna’s fucking despicable. And I know the show can and will cut footage in a way to make someone seem different than they are, but I can’t imagine there could be enough cut footage in the world to justify her behavior this episode.
Lizzie: The things this show will do for ratings shouldn’t surprise us, and it really shouldn’t surprise the contestants, and yet the fact that they allowed this to go on without, you know, some sort of supervision, is one of the worst moments on this show to date, and we’re on season twenty freaking five.
Look, I’m not going to pretend the drama doesn’t sell, it does, and that’s why the producers fan the flames, or edit this the way they do, and that’s not really on them, it’s on us as a society, but there should be some line of respect for the people who are actually making your show lucrative, especially considering what this could mean for Brittany going forward. And yeah, she might get a chance to explain herself once the show is over, but that she even has to is partly because the producers decided Anna’s whole drama deserved attention, and that manufactured drama was more important than truth. Now, again, surprising …not. Despicable? Yes.