July 20, 2010

looking for love in all the wrong places

I'll admit it: I watch The Bachelorette. Though I don't follow it nearly as closely as I have in the past, I still follow it. And I eagerly anticipated watching last night's train wreck, which Reality Steve (a fountain of all things spoilerific) promised would turn Frank into "the most hated contestant in franchise history."

Really, Steve? Because the way I see it, Frank did the honorable thing. He bowed out once he figured his stuff out. Perhaps he should have spoken up sooner about his feelings for his ex. But it's not like Ali wasn't dating 24 other guys while she was dating him! In Bachelor-Bachelorette land, the "chosen one" is expected to date many people at once, while narrowing the field down to "the one." Since we're in the middle of a Bachelorette season now, I'll speak in those terms. Bachelorette Ali chooses who to send home and who to keep around. If she feels a connection with a guy, great--she'll keep him another week. If she doesn't, he's going home. She's supposed to explore her feelings for all the guys--and they're supposed to accept that this is part of the process. (Because the way you find love is by dating 25 beautiful people on a reality show. Oh, and there must be a helicopter--or five--involved.) However, no one had better go on the show to further a career (Justin, Wes) or even consider thinking of an ex. You'd better be there 100% "for the right reasons." (How many times has that phrase been uttered on the show?)

Whether Frank ends up with his ex or not, he knew he couldn't commit to Ali; why does this make him the bad guy? He could have waited until after they used the fantasy suite or after she picked him. And let's remember that they've only known each other for a few weeks in an extremely contrived environment. It's entirely plausible that some of the guys would still be harboring feelings for exes. It's also entirely plausible that some guys may not even be into the bachelorette. (Gasp!)

So quit hating on Frank and just enjoy the show for what it is: highly entertaining (and possibly highly scripted?) "reality" TV.

(I have to mention that I loved the looks on both Roberto and Chris's faces when Ali pulled out the fantasy suite card. Have you boys never seen the show before? When you get down to the end, this is what happens ... and yes, she's offering the card to the other guys, as well.)


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