Every television genre has their iconic programs. These shows symbolize the genre, regardless of whether or not the specific viewer is a fan of those shows.
Among reality shows, The Bachelor/The Bachelorette (2002/2003-present) is an iconic behemoth that has been on the air for nearly twenty years. The premise of the both shows is simple. At the center of the show is a single man or woman. During the first episode, the self titled bachelor or bachelorette is introduced to a group of singles. As the series moves on, the number of contestants vying for the heart and the hand of the man or woman is whittled down to two potential partners. He or she must then decide whom they want to spend their life with.
I usually have a high tolerance for reality television. I know it’s fake and as produced as any fictional television program. But there is still some enjoyment to be had as a viewer. However, when it comes The Bachelor/The Bachelorette, this is one show that I cannot stand and refuse to watch. As far as I am concerned, it is pretty people falling in love for the cameras and for the sake of ratings.
Reality television is a misnomer. While it is not as strictly scripted as traditional fictional television programs, what the audience sees on the screen is not 100% authentic reality.
The Bachelor and it’s spin-off The Bachelorette has been on the air since 2002. The premise of the both shows is as follows: a single man or woman lives in a house with a group of single men or women for a period of time. The goal of the show is for one of the contestants to win the hand and heart of the single man and woman. Each week, one man or woman is eliminated until one remains and the couple hopefully gets engaged.
Today is International Women’s Day. Since nearly the dawn of time, a woman’s only option in life was marriage. Thankfully, over the past few decades, that idea is slowly becoming a thing of the past. The problem is that shows like The Bachelor and The Bachelorette are still reinforcing that marriage should be a woman’s only priority.
I am not a fan of the Bachelor or The Bachelorette, for a multitude of reasons. Then the finale of the recent season aired. While I understand that everyone needs a guilty pleasure (I have several of my own), I think there needs to be a disclaimer about this show. Not only because it’s not real, but also that it reinforces a false narrative about a woman’s life that we should be phasing out, not retelling.