It’s time for The Bachelor! Every season I think I should write a Bachelor blog to justify my unhealthy obsession with the show, but I never do it. Until now.
So here we go, kicking off Nick Viall’s season 21 of The Bachelor! I mean it’s Nick’s season and it’s season 21. Not that it’s Nick’s 21st season. I don’t think.
Yes…that Nick Viall. Yes, he’s been here before. A few times. Full disclosure: I don’t watch Bachelor in Paradise, so I’m not fully educated in the canon of Nick. I’ve only seen him with Andi and Kaitlyn, who both left him standing there with rings and chose the other guy.
So what has Nick learned in all of this Bachelor experience? He’s learned that he’s “definitely not perfect.” Most of us don’t have to go on TV 3 different times to learn that, but good for you, Nick. Maybe next he’ll learn how to pronounce “bachelor.”
Right off the bat, as we gaze nostalgically at all of Nick’s previous appearances, I’d like to state that I think this is Nick’s best look yet. I dig the beard. And thank goodness this weird hair is a thing of the past:
Nick gets some sage advice from “wise beyond her years” little sister Bella, who is adorable. Bella please do not ever be a Bachelorette. Promise me! I’m so terrified for Bella’s future right now, you guys.
Former Bachelors Ben, Sean, and Chris drop by for the ceremonial induction into the brotherhood. First they talk smack for a little bit, calling Nick “the choo choo train that just keeps chugging” and noting that most of America thinks of him as “this tool bag that nobody likes.” It took me a minute to figure out who Sean was. Does he look different or have I just erased him from my memory?
Oh hi, Chris, you still annoy me like a LOT. Apparently Bachelor in Paradise was Nick’s “redemption tour,” and Ben honestly likes him as a person. “You’re a great dude,” Ben tells him. “Be yourself.” And so with that life-changing advice, Nick ventures forth to begin his Journey.
But not before Ben gets this last zinger in: “When he gets down on one knee and asks somebody to marry him he’s also asking them to forgive him for all those mistakes he’s made in his life.” Ouch.
So in case you missed the messaging, Nick’s role is the oft-jilted, sometimes-bad-boy hero who is still OPEN TO LOVE. I mean that’s really all that matters, right? He’s never going to give up, so seriously America, you’d better hope he finds a bride here or he’s just going to keep coming back for eternity.
Hey, this Bachelor intro suffers a notable shortage of shirtless/shower footage. Just one paltry shot of our Bachelor putting a shirt on? WHAT IS NICK HIDING? DISCUSS.
So let’s meet the
victims hopeful ladies!
Rachel. You’re an attorney? Like a real one? You’re 31? Like an adult? Why are you here? Oh, ok, you love to vacuum. In case you were worried that she was too Cold and Unapproachable in her Business Suit and Real Job, rest assured: this little lady is at her happiest when performing simple domestic chores in her sweatpants!
Danielle L opened her first nail salon at 23. She likes a challenge. Now she’s 27, has 3 nail salons, and she’s ready to settle down! Finding a man is her next challenge or something, and Nick is a pleasant surprise. He’s shown through, like, being on these shows so many times, that he’s interested. Interested in what, we’re not sure.
Vanessa speaks French and Italian. She’s a special ed teacher. This is “one of the most rewarding jobs,” and her students teach her a lot, natch. “I was put here to be a teacher and to be a mom.” A guy is more or less necessary for one of those things, so bring on Nick! He seems “genuine” which is always important. Look, Vanessa hasn’t said anything awful but something about her rubs me the wrong way. Maybe it’s all the French. And she looks kinda like Celine Dion.
Josephine, 24, nursing student from Santa Cruz. When I initially filled out my Bachelor Fantasy Final 4, Josephine was my pick to win it all, based entirely on the given job title of “Unemployed Nurse.” But now she’s speaking cat and asking sea lions if Nick will like her. “It does take a certain kind of guy to kind of handle my energy….but I think Nick is that guy.” I’m so regretting my pick.
Raven is from Hoxie, Arkansas, pop 2,780, and I’m pretty sure she dyes her hair specifically to match her name. Hoxie, Arkansas soundbites include “For fun you go mudding, you shoot guns, you read your bible,” and “Family, faith, and football.” Further, “I’m a smalltown girl but I have an amazing career.” Raven owns a boutique. “I became a Business Owner..I’m really happy bein’ a Business Owner.” I hope her job title is “Business Owner.” Nope, it’s “Fashion Boutique Owner.” Bad call, Bachelor team.
Corinne wears a white bikini and lives in Miami and refers to herself in the third person and HER job title is Business Owner! Holy crap, her nanny Raquel? Wait this is all moving too fast for me. “Corinne’s world is glamorous,” says Corinne. Let’s break it down: Corinne is 24. She lives with her NANNY and her parents, who are very accommodating for the cameras and go out of their way to appear to be her lowly employees in support of her “Business Owner” status (she runs her business from a laptop on her parents’ patio, of course). And her snack is a cucumber. She “runs” a multi-million dollar company that her dad started and she’s “taking over” which I assume means she gets her own laptop now with a company email and everything. “I would describe myself as a very serious businesswoman but true love has been just so difficult.” I am so excited about Corinne.
Alexis is “weird” and does “really embarrassing things.” (If you’re not at all embarrassed, are they still embarrassing things?) “Life’s too short, just have fun with it.” There’s always one of those, and Alexis is ours. Alexis is obsessed with dolphins. “Nick would love dolphins….he NEEDS to love dolphins or else this isn’t gonna work out.”
Danielle M, 30, is a neonatal intensive care nurse in Nashville. Again…why are you here. You seem to have your life together. Wait, she said 30 but the caption says 31. Suspicious. “I’m looking for love,” but she can’t say it with a straight face.
Taylor, 23, is a mental health counselor in Seattle. She just earned her master’s from John’s Hopkins. Oh man. The Bachelor house SO needs a mental health counselor. All of her statements sound like questions, which I feel is an insecure young woman thing, but maybe it’s just a counselor thing. “The work that I do with clients comes down to vulnerability.” She’s “observed” Nick (which I’m sure is much more intense and professional than how the rest of us have just watched him on TV a lot), and thinks connection is important to him. Oh btw, connections are difficult for her! #complicated
Elizabeth, 29, Las Vegas. Doula. She met Nick at Jade and Tanner’s wedding. She was Jade’s maid of honor. Danced and drank a lot with Nick. Oh, this crazy incestuous Bachelor world. Amazing exchange with an off-camera producer: “We drank a LOT that night.” “So you spent the night together?” “It…depends how you define that term. I plead the 5th.” So OK they bumped uglies in a coat closet, got it. He asked for her number and she said no. “I thought he was just being nice.” Ok then. She’s really just hoping he remembers her. This won’t be awkward!
Nick knows he has to keep putting himself out there, and be willing to have his heart broken again. We’re really playing up the “learned from each moment” thing. The buzz words are flying now: Vulnerable. Put myself out there. Hopeful. Put myself out there. THE ONE. Man, Nick’s Journey has already been epic! In some ways he’s THE MOST QUALIFIED BACHELOR OF ALL TIME, you guys.
A limo full of screaming girls. Can he hear them??
Let’s just walk through these entrances:
Daaang Danielle L look at that dress. Cut down to the navel, lace to the toes. “You look…wow.” Indeed. What a way to start the circus.
Elizabeth, 24, is a marketing manager from Dallas. She’s kind of wearing a wedding dress.
Rachel the vacuuming attorney, in the first red dress of the night. “Before I got here I finished setting up my fantasy teams but the only play I want to make this season is for your heart.” Oh Rachel.
Christen, a wedding photographer from Tulsa, sashays out in bright yellow with a fan and asks, “How crazy do you think I am right now?” Oh Christen.
Taylor looks cute and giggly. Nick: “You got this?” This is like, very nearly a legit Meet Cute. Oooh but then all her girlfriends told her “he’s a complete piece of ****.” And she really has no follow up for that statement. Plan better, Taylor. Nick: “I cannot wait to meet her friends.” hahahaha
Kristina, dental hygienist! Thank goodness there’s a dental hygienist.
Angela, model, “would not be here if it wasn’t you,” red dress.
Lauren, sparkly gold dress. She’s a Law School Graduate, 30. Her last name is Hussy. Viall, Hussy…”together you and I are a disgusting slut.” I don’t think that worked quite like you thought it would, Lauren. But you’re very sparkly!
Michelle is food truck owner! I wish we knew more about Michelle. Like what kind of food truck, exactly? These are the important questions.
Dominique, restaurant server (we used to call that a waitress)
Ida Marie in a two-piece blue lace getup. Nick thinks she’s killing it. “For me, trust is very important.” Oh a trust fall right off the bat. At least he caught her!
Olivia from Alaska looks like Emily from Pretty Little Liars (aka Shay Mitchell from Instagram). Giant fur coat, hope that’s faux. Eskimo kiss. I mean she’s stunning, but other than that, not much of an impression.
Sneakers! Rocky music! It’s an athlete! No, it’s Sarah, grade school teacher who likes a good pun. “I thought you would appreciate another runner up.” Ba dum dum. “As far as runner-up jokes that was pretty good.” Sure, Nick, if you say so.
Jasmine G is a pro basketball dancer (we used to call that a cheerleader). She…brought Neil the ring guy? And her favorite ring. I kind of love Jasmine G right now.
Hailey, 23, is a Canadian photographer. “Do you know what a girl wearing underwear says?” “No…I don’t.” “Neither do I.” Oh Hailey. On the other hand I had the same reaction to Kaitlyn’s “You can plow my field any day” and look where it got her. “Nick is a very sexual man.” I mean…he’s a man. So…good call?
Astrid is a plastic surgery office manager or something and all I think when I see her is Michael Scott calling Jan’s baby “Asturd.” She speaks German and apparently “sex” sounds the same in German, so Nick digs it. “I don’t know any German but I coulda swore she said sex.” SHE DID, NICK! He’s so smart.
Ooooh here’s Elizabeth the doula, whom we are apparently now referring to as Liz. No longer “pleading the 5th”, she says it straight up: “We had sex.” In case we weren’t sure before. Got it! Liz tells Nick, “I’m really excited to see you.” Does he recognize her at all? I don’t think so. Hahaha zero recognition. Snap. “I kinda like that.” REALLY? Really Elizabeth? You like that the guy you had sex with doesn’t remember or recognize you? Really.
Oh now he looks confused like he’s figuring something out. And here’s Chris to jog his memory and accuse him of giving her a “weird look” that totally didn’t happen. “I think I met her before at Jade and Tanner’s wedding.” You did more than meet her, sport.
Oh man this is just the halfway point. Next limo.
Corinne is here! With a hug token. And then she gives him a free hug anyway without making him redeem the token. Come on, Corinne. Commit.
Vanessa is the Italian French Canadian special ed teacher. She’s less annoying here, maybe. She draws him in with the sexy French. He even calls her “a keeper.”
Danielle M, neonatal nurse, brought him…maple syrup. And feeds him some on her finger. “I trust that your fingers are clean.” LOL. Nick’s kinda good at this.
Raven. “Pig sooie.” Spirit fingers down! Nick “nailed it,” according to Nick. Well, Raven is very glittery and Nick digs the accent.
Jaimi: “You have some balls and so do I.” “Figuratively?” Um, did Jaimi think intimating that she has male genitalia and then pulling jewelry out of her nose would be cute?
Briana listens to his heart, literally, because Briana is a nurse and has a stethoscope. Corinne thinks people are doing weird things and her mind is blown at the decisions being made here.
Susannah gives a good beard massage, though to be fair, Nick has no point of comparison, never having had a beard massage before.
Josephine is here! She calls him dashing which is a bit generous, I think. She’s in a red dress too. “You’re a weiner in my book. Do you want to lady and the tramp it?” WHAT? She literally opens a book that contains an uncooked hot dog and forces Nick to bite one end while she bites the other. “That’s super not delicious but it’s the thought that counts.” Nick is weirded out by this one. “I haven’t had an uncooked hot dog since I was six. That was something.” Hang on, I have to go edit my Final Four.
Brittany is a travel nurse with a latex glove. Turn around and bend over. “I know you’re dating a lot of other women, so I just want to make sure that you’re clean.” Just ew.
Jasmine B has a red dress. Ha Ha, we’re all wearing red, this is so amusing and/or awful!
Whitney the pilates instructor also wears red.
Camel. CAMEL. Another girl in red. Nick has never seen a camel before. “I hear you like a good hump and so do I.” Corinne, you know what, I’m giving you this one. Mind blown at some of these decisions. I totally did not catch the camel girl’s name.
Raven: “Super jealous of that, why didn’t I think of the camel.” Indeed.
Here comes a girl in a shark suit! Oh good it’s weird Alexis, the “aspiring dolphin trainer.” Aspiring? So she’s a weird, unemployed girl who’s obsessed with dolphins. “This is so embarrassing.” But Alexis loves to be embarrassed. Also she thinks her shark costume is a dolphin. There is literally 0% chance that is a dolphin.
And that’s the ladies! All 30 of them! Which brings us to the…
The girls are all going to chat about Nick’s growth and level of readiness. Liz thinks she has an advantage because they slept together once and he doesn’t remember. Liz has some strange ideas about life.
Rachel gets the first one-on-one chat of the night and tells him she’s in civil defense litigation. More importantly, she’s Dallas cowboys fan. Nick’s a Packers fan but that’s ok because she went to law school in Milwaukee. She “stands out” to Nick, which sounds awfully First Impression Rosy to me. She is gorgeous and smart and completely unfit for this show. There must be something dreadfully wrong with her that we can’t see yet.
Christen in yellow teaches him to ballroom dance and he requests a twirl and a dip, because Nick is an overachiever. Christen is very appreciative.
Nick spends some time complimenting Danielle L’s “killer dress.” He’s going to thank her sister for picking it out. Danielle L is probably dreaming of hometown dates but he’s pretty much just drooling over her cleavage and doesn’t know what he’s saying.
At this point Chris Harrison appears to drop the First Impression Rose like a grenade in the middle of the room. “Glistening in this, like, bowl of like, sparkles.”
Corinne wants to just like, take it. Kind of how she wants to just like, take Nick, or just take that big bowl of cucumbers from her nanny. She has a bag of money for him. Oh, not money, tokens. And this charming exchange follows: “A bag of tokens for you.” “Are they hug tokens?” “You can pick.” Ummmm ok. So they’re just blank check tokens? Can I use one to have you like, make me a sandwich? Or move out of your parents’ house and not take your nanny along? Also there are a TON of them and Nick is really tempted to say something dirty but controls himself. “Be careful what you…well…I’m gonna hold you to it.” Those are not hug tokens.
Corinne disappears briefly while Vanessa talks but not for long. She’s back in a flash, dismissing Vanessa like the Serious Businesswoman she is. She’s coming in for the kill. Nick, with fear in his eyes: “I don’t have my tokens on me.” You’re not getting away that easy, Nick! Corinne: “It’s fine,” and then they’re sucking face. Like honestly those tokens are freaking worthless, Corinne.
Ooooh Nick is uncomfortable with that bold, bold move. I mean, he didn’t fight her off or anything, but now he’s worried it was inappropriate. And the girls are, too: “What a ho.” Nick hopes none of the other women saw but come on.
It’s Corinne’s world, girls, you’re all just living in it.
Liz: “I kissed him 9 months ago.” Meow. Too bad he doesn’t remember.
Some other notes from the cocktail party:
- None of these girls have EVER had to fight for a guy’s attention and this is wild, you guys. Who saw this coming?
- Nick is trying to be respectful. Hahahahahahahaha best of luck my friend.
- Jasmine is probably being too nice.
- Corinne assumes this shark thing is all about Alexis hiding her body.
And now Alexis is in the pool, still in the shark costume, calling him with a dolphin call. Nick: “You’re just milking it. I love it.” He doesn’t love it.
For an aspiring dolphin trainer, Alexis really doesn’t know what a dolphin looks like. Nick is going to educate her, or at least he’s going to try. “She’s a shark. She thinks she’s a dolphin. That’s a concern.”
Now she wants to take the costume off, but Nick’s not having it. “If you take it off, the only thing I can assure you is you’re going home. I’m kidding.” Is he? Alexis isn’t taking the chance.
And now, finally, Liz gets her moment. “We’ve met before,” Nick accuses. “I didn’t want you to think that I was here because you’re the bachelor.” Ummmm then why ARE you here?
Nick says they had a wild and crazy night. And he’s a little irritated that she never called. “My number is very easy to get for you.” Oh SNAP. Nick breaks Bachelor code by smirking at little at the idea of being there for “the right reasons,” but still, Liz is suspect. Nick is offended that even after they, ahem, “met” she still didn’t see the real him. She didn’t see the REAL him until BIP. He’s a little hurt that she slept with him, thought he was a jerk, and never called, but now that he’s the bachelor she’s interested. A valid point.
So I’m not entirely convinced Liz is here for the Wrong Reasons, but I’m not convinced otherwise, either. Time will tell, Bachelor Nation!
- Freaking Taylor is still talking about her friends and how much they HATE him. “She specifically was like, he’s a piece of ****.” Nick: “Well, I’m sure she’s lovely.”
- Danielle M, the neonatal nurse from Wisconsin, manages a pretty decent conversation. Nick asks good questions. Except “Do you work in a hospital?” That, he concedes, was a stupid question.
Oh! Nick’s made a decision and the First Impression Rose is on the move!
First of all, he’s super proud of Alexis for not ditching the shark costume. (She’s a dolphin!) (But not really.)
I feel like Corinne is going to lose it if she doesn’t get the first impression rose. And Vanessa hates flowers. This is not the show for you, Vanessa.
And the First Impression Rose goes to…Rachel! Because Nick knows she’s too good for this show and he needs to lock that down before she realizes it.
The red dress didn’t drag Rachel down, girls. If she can pull this off as “one of 15” red dressed-ladies, you should all be afraid.
NOBODY realized how emotional and intense this whole experience would be. It’s intense! But it’s only going to get more intense because it’s time for the…
“There’s not a single girl here who isn’t deserving of love.” Wow Nick. Coming out the gate with that. “Unfortunately, some of you ain’t gonna get it from me,” he means but doesn’t really say.
And the roses go to:
- Danielle L (like he was gonna let that dress go home)
[Corinne is “out of control shaking,” “can’t breathe,” she’s “losing eyesight,” dang girl]
[now Corinne is angry]
- Corinne (oh ok cool)
- Elizabeth W
- Jasmine G
- Kristina (she was crying and freaking out but look girl you got a rose chill)
[Josephine: there’s a lot of potential for us!]
- Danielle M
- Lacey (who?? OH the camel girl. Now I know her name.)
- Taylor (seriously? I think he just wants to meet that friend.)
- Alexis! “You brought a smile to my face all night,” says Nick. “But you’re absolutely a shark.” “I’m a dolphin.” “Agree to disagree, but will you accept this rose?” “Of course.” “Thank you.” “I’m a dolphin.”
I love how the phrase “we had sex” is continually edited into Liz’s comments. She clearly said it once but they’re gonna put it in her mouth 300 times.
- Liz! Nick almost seems reluctant, but he’s like “what the heck, man, let’s do this thing.”
- Olivia. Aw! The beautiful Eskimo!
- Girl in red dress whose name Nick doesn’t say (edit: It was Angela)
- Lauren Hussy
We’ll miss you, ladies! Have fun explaining to your friends that the dolphin-shark lasted longer than you!
Coming up this season!
- Corinne feels really confident.
- Liz thinks it’s fun knowing they have a little secret. I’m not sure Nick agrees.
- Never gonna give up on love.
- Nick’s heart is bringing him to the right place.
- The girls are bursting with excitement.
- Nick is super genuine.
- Connections and chemistry.
- Nick is rare and refreshing.
- The Backstreet Boys.
- Corinne will take her top off in the pool.
- Liz will tell somebody “we had sex.” (Or will she? Who knows. Editing, amirite?)
- Girls will cry.
- Corinne wants Nick NOW and she’ll do whatever it takes. Her “sex abilities are definitely top notch.” “My heart is gold but my vagine [sp?] is platinum,” she says in the soundbite of the season that we’re going to hear over and over again. She’s gonna ambush him and he doesn’t think it’s a good idea.
- Nick will cry and hit a new low. He has fears, you guys.
- “I want it to be real and I want it to be right and right now I’m just terrified that that’s not gonna happen.”
- Don’t worry, it will.
- But not before Nick cries again. He’s VULNERABLE and OPEN, ok?
- The magic 8 ball is very doubtful about Nick’s happy ending.
So that’s my very first Bachelor recap! I’ll see you next week for the next leg of our Journey!