February 14, 2010

Just in time for V-Day

We can all talk about how commercialized and ridiculous Valentine's Day is. Every girl needs pillows, hearts held by teddy bears, roses, and one item from every store displaying something red, pink, lacy, or heart-shaped, not to mention a diamond. Make that multiple diamonds. How about an engagement ring, while you're at it?

Leaving aside the ridiculousness of being proposed to on Valentine's Day, let's just assume that I've typed and you've read about the travesty of this horrible, horrible, lace-overdosed day so that we can move on to more interesting things on this perfectly unremarkable Sunday. Like trashing The Bachelor.

I'm assuming that most of you know or have heard of The Bachelor, which means that I don't need to take much time to explain why it's the perfect day to beat it down, cut off its head, and bury it in unconsecrated ground with two streams of blessed water meeting directly above its unfortunate grave. For those of you who haven't, I'll just say that The Bachelor (and its spin-off, The Bachelorette) is the epitome of love commercialized and ridiculified. One man, twenty-five beautiful women. And approximately nine weeks to weed them down to his "one true love," at which point he will propose and everyone will be happy. Lovey-dovey. Never-break-up-y.

I'm not knocking the love at first sight thing. I'm well aware that it's possible to meet and marry in less time than nine weeks, and go on to be ridiculously happy and married forever. But try doing that when competing with twenty-four other women while being filmed. The entire time. (Almost.)

In the entire history of the show (both shows, actually) there has only been one marriage. The producers of The Bachelor are quite proud of it - they like to parade the happy couple around and say, "See? See? True love really is possible. And we make it."

There are so many things wrong with The Bachelor that it would take quite a while to list them all, but I'll try to keep it short and sweet here.

1. People are getting paid to be on this show, thus providing a monetary incentive to stay on it. Need I say more?

2. The entire process is so unrealistic it's near impossible to imagine how something organic and real can grow from it. I mean - where else in your life (seriously) are you going to find yourself competing against twenty-four men/women for the "love of your life," who probably isn't that swell anyway? Worth the effort? Without the money (see item 1), I really think not.

3. I don't know about you, but to me, love is a little bit like the moss that grows under a stone; it needs just a little bit of privacy to flourish. Does anyone really expect to fall in love (or even to really act natural) in front of dozens of rolling cameras? (This is also why I don't want to get [that] famous. Such a relationship death-kiss.)

4. After a while, all these declarations of love start sounding ridiculous. In any given episode one can expect to hear these exact phrases multiple times: "He's so perfect!", "We have the most incredibly connection!", "I don't know what to do - I'm falling for all these women!", "He's everything I ever wanted in a man"... and more. And more. And more. Some fake tears, some heavy breathing. And more.

In short, my friends, The Bachelor is fake.

And yet...there's just something about it (something akin to a car wreck) that's strangely mesmerizing. Which is why I know that while Jake used to (seem to) be something of a good guy, the fact that he's head over heels for Vienna is a clear indicator that he has stupendously bad judgment.

Seriously, Jake. Vienna?

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