2020 Gratitude: The Bachelor/ette

If you had told me a year ago – literally one year ago, probably up until New Years Eve 2019 – that I would be die-hard into The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, I would have said you were crazy! 2020 was a new year for me!

Though I had been in love with Survivor for a few years now, I never really branched out into other types of reality shows. I had especially thought that The Bachelor and The Bachelorette were not for me – they’re all vapid and fake! The drama is fake! Who really falls in love on TV? What’s the point?

In the new year, however, I was introduced to a new group of friends that I was excited to bond with. When one suggested a fantasy league for the upcoming season of The Bachelor, I put my prejudices aside for the shared experience. I chose women completely at random and tuned in every week with low expectations.

Little by little, I was sucked in. I thought that I was above petty drama and female cattiness, but it turns out, I’m not! I absolutely love it! I love getting angry at the imagined drama between beautiful women in expensive ball gowns! I love gasping and screaming at my TV whenever Peter makes another bad decision! I love watching people’s hearts break on national television!

The end of the most recent season of The Bachelor happened to coincide with the beginning of quarantine, when I was especially ravenous for more media to fill my time. I spent this past summer watching the Greatest of All Time season recaps and have started to put on old seasons as background noise while I’m working (just like I did with Survivor a few years ago).

While the original friendships that inspired my new obsession fizzled out very quickly, my obsession with the franchise definitely did not. I found out that some of my existing friends were already avid watchers, so I continued to connect with them over what happened on last week’s episode, who got eliminated, what happened on the dates, even stupid memes. We even have a fantasy league for the current season of The Bachelorette, and listen to episode recap podcasts together.

Like many of my other quarantine obsessions, this show has given me the double whammy of routine – tuning in on Tuesday nights has become familiar at this point – as well as connection to others. Yeah, it’s a silly show, but who cares? Not everything in life has to be serious!

Who is my winner pick for this season, you ask?