Monday, January 2, 2012

Why is The Bachelor So Hot?

After sixteen seasons, The Bachelor is back and still going strong.  I was on Twitter for thirty minutes (okay, forty-five), and every other tweet was a succint squee about the show's return.  So why do fans return time after time?

I did a little research (i.e. I sent out a tweet asking for feedback) with The Bachelor audience, and I read a few online articles to try to get a sense of what brings bachelor fans together once a week, every week at 8:00 on ABC.  Though this isn't completely scientific, here are the reasons given for The Bachelor's appeal:

Everybody needs a guilty pleasure, and as guilty pleasures go, this one's pretty harmless.  One can tune-in week in and week out, get a taste of drama, suspense, a chance that two (or more in this case) people might fall head over heels in love and you have a front row seat without leaving your armchair.  Nice guilty pleasure for anyone.

Also, love stories are alluring.  I write romance, and I (and my hubby) get all the stereotypical jokes from those who know what I write.  Yet, these same women, and even some men, readily admit to waiting on the edge of their seats to see who's rose-worthy (and of course, who isn't).  Everybody--men and women--love a good romance story, and each show is a small romance leading up to the ultimate romantic ending where one man falls for one woman, and  they come together against impossible odds.

Furthermore, we all want to be a fly on the wall when crazy things go on.  The emotional roller coaster of the saga that builds, the personalities of the contestants (read: insanities, baggage, and general egomaniacal delusions), and the chance that something unexpected will happen at any moment all combine to make the show hard to turn away from.

In the end, it all comes down to one reason people can't get enough.  The Bachelor is a safe subject to be opinionated about, and believe me, folks are opinionated.  To see the chatter for yourself, just go to Twitter and search for either #thebachelor or #bachelor list.  You'll see a perfect example of uninhibited spouting of opinions on something that fortunately doesn't divide nations (yet).

Of course, a reason that came up again and again had nothing to do with the show's premise.  It had everything to do with the host--Chris Harrison.  So many women said over and over again, they tuned in to see Mr. Harrison.  Perhaps that's why he's around season after season as well.

Are you a fan of the show?  What do you like about it?  If you're not a fan, what turns you off about it?

Happy Writing,


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  1. I've never been a fan of the show, but you made some great points. (All hail Twitter-follower research! Wish I could have done that with my dissertation...but I digress.)

    The point about most people loving romance is absolutely true. How many non-romance books have a romantic element or love story in them? Even scripted TV shows that have nothing to do with romance usually have a romantic subplot (hello? House, M.D., anyone?) It spans the genres, whether the haters like it or not.

  2. I have probably watched a few episodes but these kind of shows drive me crazy and I refuse to watch, LOL
    I don't think it's about romance at all but about 15 minutes in the spotlight good or bad. Since I don't watch a lot of TV at all, I can't say much about this show one way or the other.

  3. I have to agree with you ladies. Not a fan. It's high unlikely to make a connection with so many other people trying to do the same. I think there was only one couple who made it past the end of the show and actually got married.

    Having said that there are shows that I enjoy that most people don't like so.

  4. I've never watched the Bachelor. Actually, I don't watch any reality t.v. -- as Kellie said, they drive me crazy.
    But I agree people are very enthusiastic about them. I have friends who do not miss their fave reality show.
    Interesting post!

  5. I don't watch reality shows, either--except for "So You Think You Can Dance," during the summers. But "The Bachelor" certainly has devoted fans and its people and story lines are covered in some news shows. I think one thing that really put me off occurred a few seasons ago when the ending was scripted so the guy chose one girl, then changed his mind, etc. All for ratings. But I'm definitely in favor of romance LOL. And I love it that so many people like romance stories, too. More fan base for us writers.

    Good post, Cherie. Definitely generates discussion!

  6. I've never watched the show, not a big fan of reality, but I can see why women would like the show. Though, for me, I don't think the Bachelor is romance. I find it seedy and, well, a bit crass, if not down right rude. I mean, we all want to be picked out of a crowd and set apart, but not a crowd of twenty of our hottest peers who are TRYING to get the man. I've never been one to compete for anything though. :)

  7. I don't watch reality shows, but if I'd known that hunky Dr. Travis Stork existed back then, I definitely would have watched that one.
    Great blog, Cherie!

  8. Huh, I wonder who's watching this show then? The demographic would be interesting to me. Thanks for stopping and commenting.