You’d be ignorant if you said you hadn’t picked up on the nauseating pattern TV network brainwashers loyally abide by with television dribble such as The Bachelor(ette).
It begins with the advertisements that commence what seems to be 24 months before the show actually premiers to ‘build hype’ – like it’s some new, fundamentally complex programme that requires 15 dramatic seconds of introduction I will never get back.
“I’m just a normal (insert appropriate age that indicates fun, but also responsibility and preparation for ‘the one’) year-old guy who is ready for love,” the frighteningly golden, muscular man smiles at the interviewer off camera. A montage of things he does with his spare time cut (much like his jawline) in between mouth-watering smoulders; highlighting a successful career, passion for children and enjoyment of the “great outdoors”. Cue the pre-recorded surf footage to conveniently show the audience his 36-pack. Putting the cherry on top of this Stud-Muffin Sundae – which he probably wouldn’t eat anyway because you don’t get abs like those from eating sundaes.
Yeah okay, he’s hot – whatever.
Never mind the fact that this guy only has roughly 12 minutes to wine-and-dine 1,025 women, without the incentive of a hand job, isn’t unrealistic enough – the variety of females picked for him to court are hardly diverse.
You’d think a dating show would invite an assortment of ladies onto the programme to preserve at least an ounce of authenticity. Sadly, no.
“Hi, I’m Jessica. My hobbies include jogging 106 kilometres a day, and willingly drinking spirulina.”
These women are extraordinary. It’s outrageous.
Like Mister Bachelor, the ridiculously stunning specimens floating around the palace the sponsors generously allow them to reside in, are beacons of health. Their beauty is evident in their glowing skin, glossy hair and impossibly slender physiques.
Reading between the lines, the producers pair women with aesthetically similar characteristics to the guy crowned The One out of a sea of audition tapes.
In reality, it’s bullshit and challenges the already sketchy façade that this show produces legitimate and durable love.
Similarly, it’s equally bullshit in the respect that these programmes promote the idea that skinny folk with artificially whitened teeth are allowed to find love, but people of all other categories deserve bugger all.
It conjured a lovely fantasy in my head of a show that has an alternative fellow with an array of gorgeous girls and/or boys on the slightly chunky side or who have been blessed with acne or glasses or a wheelchair.
As a lass of the double digit dress sizes, I have to admit I don’t feel great when I watch these programmes. Although my worth is equal to those women on the telly, your brain starts to pull the figurative rug out from underneath your self-esteem when you’re reminded that they are whom society deem desirable.
I’d love to see a woman with a curvy waistline and stretchmarks have a man like Mister-Abs down on one knee in front of her, on air for the entire world to see. Now, I’m not skinny-shaming, but it would be a twist on a recycled story that I can guarantee would gain views and give a big fuck you to social norms and stereotypes. But I forget, that’s not “good TV” and people don’t want to watch a fat girl happy because fat isn’t attractive and toned tanned boys are for the supermodels.
The real killer though is a perpetually sad dilemma. I can slaughter this “television dribble” all I like, but I will still regrettably watch next week’s episode.
Words by Bianca Iovino