Everything You Should Read/See/Know Before Tonight's 'Bachelor' Finale
Everything You Should Read/See/Know Before Tonight's 'Bachelor' Finale
Meghan Carlson
Meghan Carlson
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
Tonight Brad Womack will propose to one of two remaining women he met on TV and wooed over the course of three months in front of cameras at a handful of highly orchestrated and regimented hang-out sessions, and we will all pretend that that is a completely normal and logical and romaaaantic thing to do. Fun!

But not fun enough on its own. Despite Chris Harrison's usual exclamations that it's going to be "the MOST DRAMATIC BLAH BLAH BLAH" ever, I predict that tonight's two-hour Bachelor finale will be mostly banal feelings-focused filler cut with recaps of we've already seen this season, followed by the ten minutes we're all actually tuning in to see: The dumping of the runner-up and the proposal to the winner in the final showdown of the two female archetypes: Emily and Chantal. White Swan vs. Black Swan. Betty vs. Veronica. Barbie vs. Barbie's brunette friend whose name no one remembers. (Was it Midge?) OH MY GOD WHO WILL HE CHOOOOSE?

So for those looking to enhance their viewing experience tonight, now's the perfect time to bone up on the latest Bachelor news, revisit some of our best coverage of the season and adjust your Bachelor drinking game to suit tonight's finale. And this is the perfect place to find all of those things:

The Schedule:
Tonight on ABC, it's a Bachelor-tastic evening. Here's the breakdown for your viewing party/DVR needs:
8-10pm: The Bachelor Finale. Brad will introduce Emily and Chantal to his family, each woman will have a "Last Chance Date" (yikes!) and then Brad will stand on a beautiful South African bluff and dump one and propose to the other. I will recap this.
10-11pm: The Bachelor: After the Final Rose pre-taped special, which will feature interviews with Brad, Emily, Chantal and the three "successful" couples to ever come out of the series. I will also recap this.
11-12pm: Local news and Nightline. AKA Nap time. If it's not Bachelor-related news, WE DON'T WANNA HEAR IT, WORLD! Except about the tsunami. We should all send the aid organizations in Japan some money during this hour.
12am: The Bachelorette Announcement on Jimmy Kimmel Live. If I can stay awake this late, I will post about the announcement ASAP, though (SPOILER ALERT) we've already heard rumors of the lady's identity so you could just elect to read that article, go to bed and read about it again in the morning, since it might not be much of a surprise.

Today's Essential Reads:
Reality Steve got in one last spoilery dish today before the finale, and this one is about tonight's After the Final Rose. If you don't want to know who Brad picks, don't read it. If you DO want to know who Brad picks, and know about how their relationship has been going since the proposal (SPOILER ALERT: it's not all roses, but we also don't know the specifics) then you should definitely read it.

Sarah Ventre at NPR wrote an incredibly well-articulated article today about Brad's conflicting, confusing, contradictory statements about what kinda lady he wants to marry, called "Bachelor Asks For A Modern Marriage But Chases An Old-Fashioned One." My favorite part is the beginning, when she reassures me that you can be smart and forward-thinking and still enjoy watching this sexist, ridiculous mess. But it's all great and interesting! Read her article, forward-think all over the place about it, then impress your friends with your own intelligent analysis of Exactly What's Wrong With Brad.

EW's Kristen Baldwin and Annie Barrett compiled a gallery of this season's most heinous rose ceremony dresses. It's fun and ugly. It's fungly!

A Look Back at This Season:
We had a lot of fun making fun of this season on The Bachelor. If you're bored during the episode or want a delightful way to prepare, take your pick from any of these Best of the Best of our 2011 Bachelor coverage:

- Statistics Fun: Brad's Bachelor Ladies By the Numbers

- Eerie Fun: 10 Ways Brad Womack's Return to The Bachelor is Exactly Like Weekend at Bernie's 2

- Dating Fun: Our Series of Bachelor-Inspired Dating Tips: Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Week 4, Week 5, Week 6.

- Sarcasm Fun: Bachelor Bitchin': What's the Sexiest Thing About Brad?

- Embarrassment Fun: A Brief History of the Craziest Bachelor Hometown Dates

- The Final 2 in Review: 'The Slap Heard 'Round the World': Chantal O'Brien's Season in Review and 'Itsy Bitsy Barbie': Emily Maynard's Season in Review.

- RECAPS! Last week's recap: Week 9, Goin' South in South Africa. My personal favorite recap of the season, starring Michelle: Week 4, Fear Factory. A close second: Week 7, Happy Valentine's Day You Did Not Receive a Rose.

Drinking Game:
With rules from our Bachelor Valentine's Day Drinking Game and Women Tell All Drinking Game, plus BRAND NEW rules just for this special finale event:

The Bachelor Finale Drinking Game
Drink when...
  • Chris Harrison says: "shocking," "controversial," "heartbreak" or "in Bachelor history."
  • Brad says: "My God," "badly," "put myself out there," "that being said," "extraordinary" or "incredible woman." Drink 2: When he mentions being in therapy.
  • A woman cries. Drink 2: When Brad cries.
  • We "take a look back."
  • Anyone says: "fairy tale," "dream," "follow my heart," "happily ever after," or "than I ever imagined."
  • Brad talks about how he is completely in love and ready to propose. Drink 2: When Brad questions his feelings or considers walking away.
  • You see one of the three H's: Helicopter. Hot tub. Harrison being useless.

Have fun! And be sure to come back later tonight and tomorrow for the recaps of tonight's finale and After the Final Rose. Until then: Who's got final thoughts about the season? Did you enjoy it? Do you hate yourself for watching/caring? Do you have predictions for what happens to Brad and his bride? Do you care? Share!

(Image courtesy of ABC)