LIPGLOSS: Everyone Shut Up, I Love ‘The Bachelor’


LIPGLOSS is a weekly dating and humor blog. Check back every Thursday for anything from restaurant reviews to dating advice to eclectic lists.

This is a time of recovery for me–from midterms, from the madness of SXSW, and, if we’re being totally honest here, still from my month-long binge of sweets that was The Holiday Season.

More importantly, though, I am recovering from the most recent season of ‘The Bachelor.’

Even if you cringe to admit it, there’s a good chance you’ve heard at least a little bit about this round of the reality show. It got a hell of a lot more publicity this season, solely because this season’s Bachelor, Juan Pablo Galavis, was literally the worst. He deserves his own blog post/.gif set entirely, but to sum it up, Juan Pablo made homophobic comments, was consistently misogynistic, and blamed almost every argument on the fact that he’s not fluent in English.

In fact, his jerkishness got so many viewers riled up that one of the girls who walked out on him, Andi Dorfman, is now next season’s Bachelorette! Hooray?

Whatever. I love it.

First of all, you get to see this huge disparity between how the contestants describe themselves and how they actually are. Trisha might say she’s an “easygoing, jeans-and-a-t-shirt type of gal,” but will invariably end up being the one making rude comments about another girl’s outfit, or having a panic attack on the romantic hot air balloon ride over rural Thailand.

Juan Pablo, if I remember correctly, once described himself as kind and considerate, which is hilarious. If nothing else, “The Bachelor” has taught me that whatever adjectives people use to describe themselves are pretty much the exact opposite of their actual personality. Useful, no?

Also, whether you like it or not, “The Bachelor” is a near-perfect microcosm of an unhealthy/failing relationship. Yeah, it’s a highly rigid, staged format, but the “rules” the women follow are too often the “rules” to which people end up holding themselves prisoner in the dating world.

Think about it–you’ve got a bunch of women competing for one man’s admiration, each week hoping that he likes them at least enough to keep them around for another few days. That gradual willingness to settle, to keep a relationship going just because, hey, at least he doesn’t hate you, is all too common. On “The Bachelor,” a rose doesn’t mean “I am highly interested in you,” it means “You are not my least favorite yet, wanna ride in a helicopter with me?” It represents the most “meh” approach to dating there is. I’ve accepted my share of metaphorical roses; we all have.

That parallel alone is enough reason for me to watch; the guilty pleasure of the show’s actual content is just the icing on the cake.

The next time you go through a break-up (about which I am, in advance, terribly sorry), binge-watch “The Bachelor.” Not only is it a sinful riot of shiny muscles and high-pitched voices, but it can actually, unintentionally, teach you something about why relationships turn gross. Also, it goes great with ice cream.