'The Proposal' premiere on ABC: Ten women compete pageant-style for Mike Crowe, he proposes to Monica Villalobos
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 06/19/2018
The Proposal premiered with 10 ladies competing to win one mystery gentleman's heart, and by the end of the episode, there was an engagement!
ABC's new reality dating series from The Bachelor creator Mike Fleiss debuted with the 10 women -- selected by a panel of matchmakers -- attempting to win the heart of a man whose identity was initially concealed from them by participating in four pageant-style rounds of competition.
The season's first mystery gentleman was Mike Crowe, a police officer from Bakersfield, CA.
Mike lost his right leg as the result of a serious motorcycle accident. Due to the obstacles he has overcome, Mike does not take life for granted and desperately wants a partner whom he can spend his time with.
The women were then brought out onstage one by one.
Jessica Turik, a 30-year-old in medical sales, was welcomed onstage first, and then she was followed by Morgan Maxwell, a 25-year-old brand ambassador; Havilah Malone, a 35-year-old author and motivational speaker; Nicole Gillespie, a 27-year-old Olympic weightlifter and executive assistant; and Kelly Gray, a 30-year-old licensed skydiver and roller derby enthusiast.
Next up was Stephanie Contreras, a 28-year-old weight loss business owner, and on her heels were Riona Booze, a 29-year-old medical student; Kendall Maxwell, a 30-year-old baton twirler and neuropsychologist; Alona Ballard, a 41-year-old life coach; and Monica Villalobos, a 31-year-old realtor.
After brief introductions, Mike decided he'd like to see more of the following women: Monica, Jessica, Morgan, Riona, Nicole, Alona, and Kendall.
It then became time for the best of beachwear or swimwear round. While some girls felt comfortable enough to rock bikinis, several women wore one-piece suits or a bathing suit with a wrap around their waist.
Once this round concluded, Mike advanced the women he'd like to get to know better: Jessica, Monica, Morgan, and Kendall.
In the next stage of competition, Mike was allowed to ask each woman a serious question about topics that matter to him, such as religion, politics, sex, or past relationships -- and each woman was given 30 seconds to answer.
Mike asked Morgan how she felt about dating an amputee, and after a brief and somewhat awkward pause, Morgan explained it's not about someone's appearance but rather his soul, so it wouldn't matter.
Mike questioned whether Jessica could live with the possibility her husband may never come home after work given his job is dangerous.
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Jessica said she would be okay knowing God would always take care of him. Jessica also said she would take advantage of every single moment with him so they'd have a fulfilling relationship regardless.
Monica was asked why her last relationship ended and what she learned from it. Monica explained her previously relationship lasted for seven years but they grew apart and the man was trying to hold her back in life. From the romance, Monica learned to be strong, independent and face her fears.
Mike then asked Kendall how adventurous she is in the bedroom. Given Kendall's serious profession, she was unable to answer, but she pointed out they could explore their sexuality later on.
Following the interview round, Mike wanted to keep seeing Jessica, Kendall and Monica.
The three girls then met Mike's best friend, Andrew. Andrew got to ask each girl a question, and it was soon revealed that Kendall does not want to have children. Since Mike and Andrew hope to have their children play together one day, this was probably a dealbreaker for Mike, and so he eliminated her at the end of the round.
Towards the end of the show, Mike said he could sincerely see himself proposing to Monica or Jessica.
As a result, the two women got to meet Mike face-to-face. The girls had big smiles on their faces when he walked out, so they seemed very pleased.
Monica and Jessica were then instructed to explain to Mike how far they'd be willing to go for love and for him.
Both women got emotional in their speeches, as they discussed wanting to grow old with a man and have someone to enjoy each and every day with. The women were looking for a man who would be there for them, and they in turn, promised to always have Mike's back.
During Jessica's plea, she asked her father for permission for Mike to propose -- which was a cute, traditional gesture -- but then Monica seemed to win over the audience and Mike's heart when she stated her beloved rescue dog, Toby, was the one who needed to approve of Mike.
Mike never thought he'd find love on a show like this, but he admitted that he did. And that's when Mike chose Monica and popped the question.
"From the first time you stepped out on the stage, you were absolutely amazing. So as weird as this sounds, will you marry me?" Mike asked.
Monica accepted the proposal and they kissed onstage as friends, family and audience members cheered.
Former The Bachelor star and NFL quarterback Jesse Palmer serves as host of The Proposal.