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'The Bachelor' star Juan Pablo Galavis eliminates nine bachelorettes in season premiere


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 01/07/2014 

The Bachelor star Juan Pablo Galavis cut his first nine bachelorettes during Monday night's premiere of the ABC reality dating series' eighteenth season.

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Alexis Morgado, a 24-year-old communications director from Tampa, FL; Amy Jokinen, a 31-year-old massage therapist from Los Angeles, CA; Ashley Poe, a 25-year-old grade school teacher from Dallas, TX; Christine Llano, a 23-year-old police support specialist from Miami, FL; and Kylie Lewis, a 23-year-old interior designer from Rockford, IL, failed to receive a rose from the 32-year-old single dad and former pro soccer player from Miami, FL.

In addition, Lacy Faddoul, a 25-year-old nursing home owner from La Jolla, CA; Lauren Higginson, a 25-year-old mineral coordinator from Oklahoma City, OK; Maggie Gantt, a 24-year-old personal banker from North Augusta, SC; and Valerie Eredia, a 26-year-old personal trainer from Sutter, CA, were also denied roses.

"I cannot believe that I'm going home the first night. I've been through a lot and I'm sick and tired of people looking at me and feeling sorry for me, and this is kind of another thing. So it just really sucks," Lauren H. said in tears following her ouster. 

"I'm a genuine person and I want to find my best friend. I want to make a life with somebody. It's all I want. But I'm going to go home to my family and try to get back to normal."

The Bachelor's eighteenth-season premiere began with Juan Pablo, who is now in consulting for the sports and entertainment industry, talking about his journey to come.

Juan Pablo explained he hopes to find the love he's been looking for because that's what is missing in his life. He noted that his daughter Camila was born on Valentine's Day in 2009 and she'd always be his valentine, so it was important to him to find a wife that would understand and appreciate family. Juan Pablo also wants two more kids "badly" and felt The Bachelor experience would be all about "destiny."

After Juan Pablo's package, Sean Lowe, the star of The Bachelor's seventeenth edition, sat down to chat with Juan Pablo. Sean told him to always go with his gut and also warned him he'd develop strong feelings for multiple women and would have sleepless nights as a result.

Sean also advised Juan Pablo not to kiss a woman when other bachelorettes are watching nearby. Reflecting on his own The Bachelor "adventure," Sean told Juan Pablo to remain open-minded because he had certain women pegged to be his final ladies early on in the season but his soon-to-be wife Catherine Giudici wasn't even on his radar until the third week or so into the process.

The broadcast then featured a handful of introductions to the show's bachelorettes. The most touching stories happened to be Renee Oteri, a 32-year-old real estate agent from Sarasota, FL, being a single mom to an eight-year-old son named Ben whom she called her "sidekick," and Lauren H., who got engaged to a man she was madly in love with but then got dumped six weeks after he proposed.

Lacy is from a family of 13 people, nine of whom have special needs, and Clare Crawley, a 32-year-old hairstylist from Sacramento, CA, recently lost her father to brain cancer. Clare's dad had made a DVD for his daughter to give to her future husband one day, and Clare insisted no one -- including herself -- had ever watched the DVD.

Afterward, Juan Pablo anxiously awaited the ladies' arrival in the limos, and one by one the 27 bachelorettes pulled up to the mansion and met The Bachelor star. Juan Pablo initially anticipated there being only 25 women, but host Chris Harrison said they extended the casting limit because of how much interest there had been in the Latino Bachelor.

Cassandra Ferguson, a 21-year-old former NBA dancer from Rochester Hills, MI, and Juan Pablo had some awkward moments of silence during their introduction. However, he was clearly attracted to her as he said "holy moly" when she walked away.

Juan Pablo noted Christy Hansen, a 24-year-old marketing manager from Chicago, IL, was "gorgeous."

"I'm liking this first limo," an overwhelmed Juan Pablo joked.

Christine gave Juan Pablo a friendship bracelet to give to his daughter. It read "Camila" in beads, and Juan Pablo called the gesture "cute, very cute."

Nikki Ferrell, a 26-year-old pediatric nurse from Kansas City, MO, asked Juan Pablo to listen to her nervous heart through a stethoscope. After the blonde bombshell walked inside the mansion, Juan Pablo playfully bit his hand and yelled out, "No more limos!"

Kat Hurd, a 29-year-old medical sales representative from Scottsdale, AZ, asked Juan Pablo to show her some salsa moves, and Lucy Aragon, a 24-year-old free spirit from Santa Barbara, CA, stepped out of the limo with a wreath of flowers in her hair and no shoes.

Lauren Solomon, a 26-year-old music composer from Austin, TX, wheeled out a piano and played a song for him. She made a mistake in the performance but admitted she was very nervous. Lauren S. forgot to tell Juan Pablo her name, but he actually ran inside the mansion to ask her for it before continuing on with the arrivals.

Chelsie Webster, a 24-year-old science educator from Columbus, OH, was about to do a science experiment with Juan Pablo but suggested they make some chemistry of their own. Clare surprised Juan Pablo by having a big pregnant belly, but she quickly revealed it was a prank and a symbol she'd simply like to have kids.

Alli Restko, a 26-year-old nanny from Chicago, IL, kicked around a soccer ball and told Juan Pablo she can keep up with the boys. Maggie gave the Bachelor a fishing hook, saying she hoped he'd be the "big catch" she had been looking for. Kelly Travis, a 27-year-old dog lover from Atlanta, GA, was beaten to the punch by her dog Molly, who jumped out of the vehicle before her.  

Lacy offered Juan Pablo a prescription for a headache since there were going to be so many women in one house. And lastly, Juan Pablo seemed blown away by the beauty of Andi Dorfman, a 26-year-old federal prosecutor from Atlanta, GA.

"How am I going to do this?! How am I going to send people home?" Juan Pablo wondered after he met all his bachelorettes.

Once everyone was gathered inside the mansion, the women gushed about Juan Pablo's looks and sexy accent. Juan Pablo said it was crazy looking at so many beautiful girls, and he asked them to just be themselves because he wanted to fall in love with a real person, not someone pretending.

The initial cocktail reception then commenced.

Juan Pablo was overwhelmed with his bachelorettes but decided to break the ice with a dance party. He also had a photo booth inside the mansion for the girls to have some fun with. Afterward, the conversations flowed. Juan Pablo found things in common with Renee, especially how they're both parents. He called Lucy a little "crazy" and "strange."

Amy J. decided to give The Bachelor star a massage outside of the mansion. She got really into it, but Juan Pablo later noted "the massage was pretty awkward."

When Chris Harrison dropped off the coveted first-impression rose, Juan Pablo told the cameras it wasn't going to be easy to pick one person when there were 27 great first impressions. The girls immediately started getting anxious. Maggie, for example, said, "It's not just a rose; It's my future."

Chelsie was pleased because she got some photos with Juan Pablo in the booth. Elise Mosca, a 27-year-old first grade teacher from Forty Fort, PA, basically suggested she felt love at first sight with the Bachelor. She was convinced her mother, who had died about a year prior, would guide her in the right direction to find love.

Meanwhile, Lauren H. began psyching herself out and crying. She couldn't believe she was getting worked up so early into the season, but she was worried about getting her time with Juan Pablo all the while trying to avoid stepping on the other women's toes. Lauren H. said she had been so strong through the hard times in her life, so she was surprised how emotional she was getting in the moment.

Lauren H. did end up getting her time with Juan Pablo, however. She chose to bring up her last relationship right off the bat and explained how her ex-fiance had dumped her. The man apparently had a son whom she grew close to and she never got to see the child again. Lauren H. admitted the failed relationship had created some insecurity inside herself.

Lauren H. hoped she didn't mess things up with Juan Pablo because she thought they'd make a great match. She said she would be devastated if she didn't get a rose that night because she'd probably regret how she handled some things.

Juan Pablo then sat down with Sharleen Joynt, a 29-year-old opera singer from Heidelberg, Germany. While the Bachelor clearly thought their conversation was engaging and unique, Sharleen was feeling a little differently.   

"Sharleen, she's elegant. She looks so good, wow. When you go out of the country, you start seeing things differently. That attracts me a lot... She has 'world.' I think she separates from the rest of the group with the conversation, her looks, her vibe, her culture -- she's a keeper," Juan Pablo told the cameras.

"Juan Pablo is definitely a good package, but you know, I guess I thought that I would feel more of this, like, instant chemistry than I did," Sharleen explained in a confessional. "I guess I feel a little distraught because there's been just so much build-up and you kind of expect some sort of connection that honestly, if I'm totally honest, seemed a little forced."

Juan Pablo then offered Sharleen the first-impression rose, saying he definitely wanted to get to know her better.

After a very long pause, Sharleen replied, "Sure. Yes, sure. Thank you sir. Thank you. I was actually really not expecting this."

"Me neither! There you go," Juan Pablo said. "I want you to feel comfortable, I don't want you to feel worried at this first Rose Ceremony, because I never got one of those and I know how that feels. So I want you to relax, have a great night, enjoy with a rose in your hands."

Juan Pablo told the cameras Sharleen seemed so surprised about getting the rose she didn't know how to react, but he wasn't aware her lack of emotion was coming from a place of disinterest. Sharleen felt incredibly flattered but confused.

"What matters to me is that I either feel something or I don't, and it's still a little early to say for me," Sharleen said.

Many women picked up on Sharleen's body language and were disappointed she'd accept the rose with little enthusiasm or appreciation.

The Bachelor's eighteenth season's first Rose Ceremony then commenced and all the girls were nervous about where they stood with Juan Pablo.

Besides Sharleen, Juan Pablo then gave roses to Clare; Nikki; Renee; Andi; Alli; Chantel Forrest; Lauren S.; Kelly -- and her dog Molly -- Cassandra; Danielle Ronco, a 25-year-old psychiatric nurse from St. Louis, MO; Chelsie, and Kat.

However, when Juan Pablo called out Kat's name, Kylie stepped forward. Kylie thought the Bachelor had said her name, and Juan Pablo's face was one of terror. It was clearly an embarrassing moment for Kylie, who asked if she could just get a rose along with Kat and heard no reply from Juan Pablo. The rest of the girls looked equally uncomfortable with what just went down.

Juan Pablo then called out the names of Victoria Lima, a 24-year-old legal assistant from Boca Raton, FL; Christy, Lucy, Elise, and Amy Long, a 27-year-old local news reporter from Orlando, FL.

"From the moment this whole journey started, I truly thought that this could be the one. I put myself out there completely, but you know, people don't always feel you the way you feel them. And it hurts right now because my heart capacity is like ready to devote myself to a man to build a family. I desperately want to, um, find that person," Amy J. said in tears following her ouster.

"Coming into this, I expected to be here for a long time, and then to get sent home the first night, it's really hard, you know?" a teary-eyed Kylie explained after she was eliminated.

"Picturing my life with Juan Pablo is great and I can picture my life with him even more after meeting him, but this, my heart is breaking right now because I really feel like I'm ready to find that right person."



(Photo credit ABC)


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