Hello and welcome to the Episode 1 summary for The Bachelorette – the show that seeks to answer the question “Can a wholesome Midwestern girl find true love on a TV game show? Twice? Within a two year span?” Unfortunately, it’s also the show that poses these questions as well:
“Is it really fair or interesting to give a former winner a second chance?”
“Whatever happened to Kelli Jo?”
...and “Jen who?”
Anyway, it’s premiere night and I couldn’t be more excited to be sitting at my handy wireless keyboard, ready to give Reality TV World readers a blow-by-blow description of Jen Schefft’s quest for true love. I'll put my own snarky commentary in bold, blue to help you skip to the good stuff if you don't want to read the whole summary.
Meet The Bachelorette
This section should be called let’s refresh your memory because I doubt there are many new viewers who need to be introduced to the lovely and wholesome Jen. The only people still watching The Bachelor are diehard reality dating show freaks (like me) and those who enjoy drinking games associated with
Our host, Chris Harrison, claims that Jen is arguably the most beloved woman ever to appear on the show. Personally, I don’t know anybody who’s even mildly excited to see her return – just the opposite in fact. The people I know are all disappointed that she was selected. There’s just something about giving a former winner a second chance that is unsettling. After all she’s not the one whose heart was torn to shreds in front of a national TV audience.
We get a closer look at Jen recapping her journey towards true love with Andrew Firestone. I remember really liking Jen on that Bachelor series because she seemed more natural and sincere than most of the attention-hungry prima donnas we’ve come to expect from this show. Jen explains that she and Andrew never became "settled as a couple", and that after nine months together they realized they wanted different things out of life. Their breakup was amicable.
We also get a glimpse of Jen’s midwestern upbringing, including photos of her as a high school cheerleader where she was considered “a boy magnet”. Why does a boy magnet need a nationwide search for a halfway decent guy to marry? Anyway, after receiving her marketing degree, she fulfilled her destiny by moving to the big city – Chicago – where she became an event coordinator. She confides that she’s now ready to marry and start a family. One thing I notice is that in all her pictures from the past, her teeth are absolutely gleaming white. I didn’t think the teeth-bleaching thing had been around that long. Could her teeth be that white naturally? Every reality TV contestant I’ve seen over the last couple of years seems to have bleached white teeth. Is this why I wasn’t chosen for The Amazing Race?
**runs off to make appointment with dentist**
There are a few significant changes to the show’s format this time around that should prove to be interesting. First, they’ve switched coasts, and this series will be centered in New York City. Second, Jen tells us she’ll be “involved in the casting process”. Just the way she says it sounds funny to me - “casting process”. Shouldn’t she call it the “mate selection process”? Anyway, she’ll help pick the guys, which should result in a better chance for long-term success. She met all the guys, watched their audition tapes, and sat in the initial interviews. She wants to make sure the men are there for the right reasons and not just to launch an acting career.
As the producers are conducting detailed interviews with prospective bachelors, Jen is watching via a hidden camera. In addition, she is feeding the producers interview questions. Of course, the guys are clueless to the fact that she’s watching. Some of the guys are downright annoying. One is only there for his 15 minutes of fame. Another seems to be looking for an American bride as a ticket to staying in the U.S. Another is apparently there because he thinks Jen will appreciate what he can do with his tongue, since all we see of him is that he can lick the bottom of his own chin. Wow! He’ll have no problem getting dates after this show airs. A fourth candidate tells the producer he thinks Chicago is miserable. Some of the guys are endearing. One is a fireman. Jen jokes that there’s a fire in her pants, and can he come put it out? Don’t worry Jen, nothing like a little marriage to put out that fire in your pants!
Jen's friends Abby and Michelle are there to help give her some advice and they check out the album of photos of all the guys. Her friends are really cute. I wonder if they’d let her friends on the show if they weren’t good looking. They talk about what Jen wants in a guy and the thing they can do in New York. Abby suggests they could visit the Eiffel Tower! Michelle warns her to be careful with the sex. What the hell does that mean? Jen ends the conversation – we’re not talking about sex. She says goodbye to her friends, who I believe are hoping to catch a tour of the Golden Gate bridge before they leave the city.
Finally, Jen visits her new bachelorette pad, and thinks aloud that this could be where she meets her future husband. Then she goes shopping and tells us she’s trying on clothes for 25 men – one of whom could be her future husband. If she really wants ot think far ahead, maybe she’s trying on clothes for her future ex-husband!
Back to the Bachelorette pad, and it’s finally time to get this party started. Chris asks Jen why she’s doing the show this time and to describe her previous experience. Didn’t he watch the first half hour? We sat through it, why couldn’t he? Regardless, we learn she had no expectations the previous time, but also learned that it can work. Does she call a nine-month roller coaster ride with a rich publicity hound "working"? She’s looking for a down-to-earth guy who could be her best friend too. Personally, I think it’s better to have a separate best friend. Who else are you going to complain about your spouse to? Also, I find it truly funny that there’s such a huge chasm between the "best friend" and the "just a friend". Best friend means you get to sleep with her. Just a friend means she’ll answer your email, but won’t pick up your phone calls.
Chris and Jen talk about how her being involved in the casting should improve the odds of success, although I think they chose at least a few guys who clearly have no chance of being her soul mate just because they seem like interesting characters. I wonder seriously how many she truly thinks may be a match for her.. Hick boy? No way. She wants to be a city girl. One of the ski bums? I doubt she wants to live in Colorado, after all she’s a city girl. I guess if all guys seemed like potential matches, narrowing the field could be unduly difficult.
One more surprise. Abby and Michelle will be disguised as waitresses so they can be Jen’s eyes and ears. They will hear things she doesn’t. Finally, it’s time to meet the bachelors. For a closer look at each one, check out this link.