Chris Harrison has been hosting The Bachelor and its various subsidiaries for ten years now. In that decade, the show has had 25 seasons (including Bachelor Pad, shudder). So, if the average Bachelor season has, say, 10 episodes in it, and the average episode has, say, three dates on it, then by my calculations, Chris Harrison has played host to about 7 million Bachelor dates. Just kidding, that’s only how many it feels like. It’s more like 750 Bachelor dates. Still, that is SO many dates to have only led to one real marriage (Trista) and one takesies-backsies marriage (Jason) and one current engagement (Ashley)!
It’s so many dates that I can almost forgive Chris for what he told TV Guide this week, when they asked about Ben Flajnik’s latest group date, in which a small army of elves shut down an entire San Francisco block and built a ski hill on it so that Ben and his babes could race down it in bikinis. (Oh, and the whole date was sponsored by the Honda “leap list” campaign, because nothing says “achieve your dreams” and “buy a CRV” like “boobs boobs boobs butts boobs butts boobs.”) Maybe Chris has been doing this for so long that he’s forgotten what a real date is like. Maybe he’s been living inside the unreality of reality TV for so long that he actually doesn’t know what the word “unrealistic” means anymore.
Yet. But. Still. Chris. This quote? You should know better:
TV Guide: Skiing in bikinis for the group date was definitely a first.
Chris Harrison: The girls were game, they thought it was fun. I don’t know if once they all got in bikinis they thought it was cool, but all those girls have ridiculous bodies and if I looked like any of them I’d be walking around in a bikini all the time. And I love our public dates where we let people take pictures and come watch. For so long the unrealistic part of the dates was that no one was around and everything was so secluded. We still do that to a certain degree, but it feels so much more natural.
The “natural” part of the dates now is that you “let people take pictures and come watch”? Are you kidding me right now, Harrison? Are you so busy stopping and smelling the roses that you forgot to stop and smell the REAL WORLD?
OK, so I kind of see what Chris is trying to say. The Bachelor is a traveling circus that consists of a D-list celebrity, a hoard of hotties and a massive production team and camera crew. To stage an over-the-top date in public, and then to pretend that absolutely no curious or concerned citizens stopped by to watch and/or take blurry photos on their iPhones, is such an obvious fiction, and one that requires so much security and blocking off and tricky camera angles, that maintaining it is rendered completely pointless. (Sort of like how MTV still pretends that the Jersey Shore kids work at that boardwalk t-shirt shop. Like that’s a real “make or break” plot point for keeping us invested and the cast members more, uh, authentic? Sorry, MTV. Unlike your target demo, I wasn’t BORN YESTERDAY.)
But back to the point: It’s nice that The Bachelor is no longer pretending that their large-scale, street-blocking, community-interrupting events, or “dates,” weren’t filmed in a vacuum. (Though that would explain some of the women’s faces … no, I’m digressing again!) But, like the perfect female body that Chris apparently wishes he had so that he could walk around in a bikini all day every day, claiming that this was “the unrealistic part” is straight up RIDICULOUS.
So, for his and my and your collective reference in the future, here is a list I came up with of the real unrealistic parts of the dates on The Bachelor:
- The scenarios
- The activities
- The ceremonial handing out of roses
- The prevalence of helicopters
- The insistence upon every activity requiring a rooftop “wrap party”
- The celebrity cameos
- The size of the hot tubs and/or infinity pools
- The emphasis on torture
- The feelings
- The conversations
- The breasts
- The number of people present and the gender ratio of those people
- The whole thing about how they’re being filmed and the date airs on TV later
I could go on. But I don’t want to. Why don’t you finish off this list in the comments? Do it for Chris. Help him out. He’s been at this a long time, you guys.
(Image courtesy of ABC)