Whether she ends up becoming Ben Higgins‘ wife or not, there has been one Bachelor beauty who has attracted my attention more than any other. It’s certainly not Olivia, though she does attract a very certain spotlight. It’s not one of the gazillion forgettable blondes left in the competition. No, it’s the adopted military veteran, Jubilee. If Jubilee doesn’t win Ben Higgins‘ heart this season, ABC would be more than wise to select Jubilee as their next The Bachelorette.
The Bachelorette Needs Some Diversity
There are many interesting things going on with Jubilee that has nothing to do with her race. Though it’s a component of her identity and should be addressed, race is something that The Bachelor franchise needs to be more aware of in its casting. Viewers have noticed for a while now how white the shows has been — and that’s never a good thing.
Lifetime’s UnREAL is not threatening to steal The Bachelor‘s ratings popularity. UnREAL might be a scathing Bachelor satire but it’s on a basic cable network with low ratings. Still, UnREAL did make quite a few headlines last week for daring to do what The Bachelor franchise still has yet to do. They cast a black actor as the suitor in their fictional reality show within the show. The satire is now the show leading the original. The Bachelor franchise could be considered irrelevant and out of touch, it it doesn’t respond in kind.
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ABC president Paul Lee already teased/promised that the upcoming The Bachelorette season would be more diverse. Lee said that the farming team, which typically cull from the previous season, was looking at a couple of non-white cast members. He continued saying he would be “shocked” if the upcoming season of The Bachelorette wasn’t a little more inclusive. As of right now, Jubilee is the only woman of color on season 20 of The Bachelor that I want to see more of.
Jubilee Is a Breath of Fresh Air
One of the chief reasons that Jubilee is so entertaining on The Bachelor is that she isn’t like any of the other girls this season. There is really no comparing Jubilee’s one-on-one date with Ben to Lauren B.’s date in week 3. While Lauren B. regaled with tales of her “crazy” dad and how much he loves mowing the lawn, Jubilee was talking about real issues. Granted, Ben and Lauren B. were locking lips way more than Jubilee and Ben. You do have to consider though that telling someone your entire family is dead, is not really fodder for a passionate make out session. It is fodder for a real connection and frank discussion and arguably that’s more important when trying to find a wife.
There is a noticeable difference to how Ben interacts with Jubilee as opposed to the other girls. There is a lack of pretense and a sense of calm. Jubilee might not be the most socially comfortable person in the world but her interactions with Ben lack the awkwardness of a lot of other dates. This is because Jubilee isn’t afraid to be herself and that’s fantastic quality in reality TV star.
Jubilee is able to make an impression without falling back on the standard reality show tricks. She doesn’t yell, she doesn’t act “bitchy” towards the other girls. She just exists in her own skin and is comfortable with it. It would be so easy for Jubilee to portray herself as the “angry black woman” you see all too often in reality shows but she’s not a stereotype. Jubilee is a person.
The Bachelor made a big fuss over Jubilee’s fight with Amber in week 3 but it was the perfect example of making a mountain of a molehill. Jubilee wasn’t trying to start drama, she was being weirdly attacked by the other girls and refused to go down to their level. Jubilee is compelling without having a gimmick.
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You Need a Season to Explore Jubilee’s Layers
I’ll admit that when Jubilee was going on about her many layers and complications in week 3 it was a little bit annoying. If someone is very vocal about how fascinating they are, they’re usually incredibly boring. Jubilee is the exception. There is a genuine quality of mystery about her. She’s multi-faceted and has this amazing back story. She can be both really excited to go on a date with Ben and be sarcastic when he arrives. She has actually depressing life story, it doesn’t even involve her toes, but she is not overly demure or quiet. Jubilee has a shy nervous side but she also has a confident and proud side.
Jubilee has been given a a lot of screen time in the first three episodes of The Bachelor this season. She’s opened up several times and it feels like we’ve only scratched the surface with her. It’s still only been casually mentioned that she used to be in the army. There is so much to explore. It’s doubtful The Bachelor will have enough time to give her proper focus this season with all the other girls and Ben. Jubilee has more than enough potential to be the next The Bachelorette. ABC just needs to be smart enough to acknowledge it.
But what you think? Should Jubilee be the next lead of The Bachelorette? Would you watch it? Is there someone from this season of The Bachelor, you’d like to see more? Do you think Jubilee has chance of becoming Ben’s wife? Or is there another girl you think Ben is smitten with, even at this early stage?
The Bachelor season 20 airs at 8pm on ABC.
(Images courtesy of ABC)
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
Derek is a Philadelphia based writer and unabashed TV and comic book junkie. The time he doesn’t spend over analyzing all things nerdy he is working on his resume to be the liaison to the Justice League.