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By Susan Young, Film.com
Not to go all X-Files
and Watergate, but I believe I’ve uncovered one of the great contemporary conspiracies in our troubled times: ABC orchestrated the whole Bachelor blowup just to get some extra punch in their new season of Dancing with the Stars.
Before you shut the door in my face, consider the fact that ratings for all series are down and the networks are battling for their lives.
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Anyone who watched that first episode of The Bachelor
noted it was lust at first sight for our dear Jason when Molly came out of that limo.
But how much fun would that be? There has to be drama, there has to be the story of struggle and conflict. So you set up sweet girl-next-door Melissa against the she’s-not-right-for-Jason Molly.
Poor conflicted Jason, who realized that he needed to choose the perfect wife and mother for dear Ty over his raging love for the less maternal Molly. Or was it just all part of the script?
Mr. Nice himself tried squirming out of his ratty behavior, saying "I was contractually obligated" to be an ass on television. Then producer Mike Fleiss came back in a conference call the next morning when viewers were stunned by what they witnessed on “After the Final Rose” and denying there was anything like that in the contract.
Oh, and the call was supposed to be an interview with Jason, but he was a no-show. What were the odds?
Toss in the “leaked” e-mails between Jason and Melissa, the much hyped “most amazing” post rose wrap-up and Jason’s phony crying like a little she-dog over the balcony. That clip alone has made it on every comedy show from The Soup
to Best Week Ever
Let’s say it all together boys and girls: Lights. Camera. Action.
The public dumping of Melissa a few weeks ago just seemed all too staged to me. Melissa had already admitted to reporters later that she knew she was going to get her rose rescinded on national TV, yet she did her best to storm off the set and act all offended.
Replay that whole scene in your mind and tell me there was a single ring of truth to it. Melissa never seemed the least bit blindsided in the melodramatic episode.
Then the distraught Jason perks right up when Molly trots on the set. Did anyone really think Molly had no idea what was about to happen on the stage? Those goofy looks and big vacant eyes spelled out set-up in words even a toddler could read.
‘Why gosh Jason, I’d love to go out to coffee with you after you kicked me to the curb on TV, and then proposed spending your life with another woman, only to treat her like something you’d scrape off your shoe after a day in the dog park just minutes before I sat on this very stage.’
Just as amazing, on Dancing with the Stars
Jewel hurt herself and was replaced by a Playboy bunny. And then there was a second withdrawal. Nancy O’Dell of Access Hollywood
(the same show that scooped everyone with the leaked Bachelor e-mails) had been injured in the fourth quarter with only seconds left on the clock before a replacement had to come in to score.
Who would it be? Think, think, think. Who was asked, and rejected the notion of being the next Bachelorette? Who has been in the news? Who can pop up with a built-in sympathetic audience?
Who do we already have in our contact clutches?
They call this a "crossover" segment, and crossovers have always been big ratings grabbers.
And, while I don't have any expertise in ballroom dancing, I don’t think I’m the only one who picked up on Melissa being a little too perfect for someone who only had 48 hours to practice. The waltz might be the ballroom equivalent of a swim in the kiddie pool, but it’s still not that easy to pull off that kind of precision with less than two days of practice.
Unless you subscribe to the conspiracy theory. And I haven’t even started on the whole “Cult of Woz” plotting an Internet blitz to keep their leader on the show.
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