TV

The Sexist Double Standard on "The Bachelorette"

On The Bachelorette, it's a woman who bears the burden of other people's opinions about her choices and who's saddled with the repercussions. Why?

The main Bachelorettes effected.

ABC

Before Nick Viall became a Bachelor Nation staple, he was the guy who confronted his ex, Bachelorette Andi Dorfman, on national television.

"Knowing how in love with you I was, if you weren't in love with me, I'm just not sure why you made love with me," he said accusingly. Dorfman retorted that was "below the belt" and should "be kept private."

What Nick Viall divulged might have been met with pity if a woman had expressed it—because men take advantage of women all the time. But on The Bachelor, no woman has taken issue with the leading man being intimate with another woman. In contrast, time and time again, the men on The Bachelorette become possessive and force the female contestant to defend her actions, specifically her sexual decisions. It's clear that the Bachelor can have sex with his female suitors whenever he pleases and receive no backlash from the contestants or from Bachelor Nation.

Bachelorette Finale - Nick Confronts Andi About Sex Suite www.youtube.com

Meanwhile, Dorfman received a lot of flack for hurting Nick's feelings. Similarly, the following bachelorette, Kaitlyn Bristowe, also received backlash for having sex with Nick Viall before the "fantasy suites." It's an unspoken rule that the fantasy suites are where the final four contestants are free to do whatever they want during their first time away from the cameras. The production team typically stocks the suite with sweets, alcohol, and condoms for each pair's indulgence.

For Nick to have sex with Bristowe before the "fantasy suite" format seemed hypocritical. Here we had a man who implied that Dorfman was cruel to have sex with him because she did not end up committing to him. A year later, Nick even defended Kaitlyn's choice to have sex with him on the show, tweeting, "Sex is not shameful. Whether we want to admit it or not, sex is an important part of many serious and meaningful relationships." While Nick has since apologized, it's still important to acknowledge that he shamed Dorfman for her sexual expression in front of millions. Yet, it was Bristowe and Dorfman who received the brunt of the backlash, with people across the nation slut-shaming them, while Nick got away scot-free.

Last night, yet another Bachelorette had to address a man's issue with her sexual actions. While on her first one-on-one date in Latvia, Hannah and Garrett bungee jumped naked (as is Latvian tradition). The date was riveting, vulnerable, and fun. It was an experience for the couple and the viewers.

When Garrett came back from his date, he giddily recounted it to the other men, but resident villain Luke P. did not receive the news of the naked bungee jumping kindly. He told the camera that he didn't believe Hannah would do that, and if she did, it'd be a slap in the face to him.

On their group date, Hannah referred to her date with Garrett and confirmed what Garrett said. Reality finally hit Luke P., and he was pissed. During the evening portion of the date, he took Hannah aside to "clarify" what happened on her one-on-one with Garrett and express how he felt about it. He began by referring to her body as "a temple," then cited her nude bungee jumping as "a slap in the face"; he concluded by divulging that he's no longer "confident" that he wants her to meet his family now. When Hannah reacted poorly to this, he put his foot farther in his mouth by trying to win her back, claiming that he'll always stick by her whenever she makes "boneheaded mistakes."

'You Don't Own My Body': Hannah B Slams Luke P. Over Sexist Comments www.youtube.com

Still mulling over the alarming conversation with Luke, Hannah decided to sit down with him on the day of the cocktail party. She addressed her concerns, which included the language he used, calling her nude bungee jumping a "boneheaded mistake" and using his family against her. But, all that aside, Hannah informed Luke P. that at this point, he shouldn't even be concerned with what goes on in her other relationships because, "You're not my husband. You don't own my body. You don't own me. It's my body." Luke P. claimed that she completely misunderstood him. He told her that she might not be remembering everything correctly and that she was twisting his language. Luke P. backtracking in such a manipulative and outright dishonest fashion furthers the argument that he's not only a pathological liar, but downright emotionally abusive.

Their interaction seems to be only the beginning of what's to come. The Bachelorette has teased Hannah's iconic line, "I have had sex and Jesus still loves me!" for weeks now and recently revealed Luke P. is on the receiving end of the sentiment. It's obvious that the narrative around sex and religion will come to a head this season, which will hopefully put The Bachelor franchise's slut-shaming to bed. As much as the franchise supposedly tries to uplift their "independent" women, the Bachelorette constantly has to reassure the men, reassert her strength, and defend her actions: a phenomenon that will most likely persist, since it appears that many men still can't understand that a woman's body belongs only to her.

Recently, host Chris Harrison suggested that The Bachelor franchise has showcased the changing realities of dating. Alas, that's true. As much as The Bachelor franchise wants to keep up with the times, The Bachelorette still plays into damaging stereotypes about relationships, gender roles, and how some men on The Bachelorette react poorly to not controlling the female lead. Luke P. isn't the first contestant, nor will he be the last, to impose his expectations of what a woman should or should not do with her body. As such, The Bachelorette reinforces the double standard that a woman can't express the same bodily autonomy and decision-making as a man.

TV

Does the Bachelor Franchise Really Need Chris Harrison Anymore?

Chris Harrison may need the ABC shows more than they need him.

Chris Harrison pretending to care.

ABC

This week, Bachelor Nation expressed their frustration with the episode's odd format.

The first hour climaxed in the most spectacular fashion: Hannah let the men have it after their petty bickering; but unfortunately, we didn't see what happened next. To the fans' dismay, The Bachelorette had an hour long, mid-season recap.

Last night, like every season, the lead snapped: The "journey" became too much to handle. Usually, the moment occurs when the lead isn't getting what they want, which forces him or her to question why they're even there.

Last season, Colton went AWOL after the woman he wanted, Cassie, left the show. Despite years of on and off relevance, Chris Harrison finally had the opportunity to play a vital role. On Episode 9, Chris Harrison became the season's MVP, jogging after Colton in the Portuguese country-side, juggling two phones while trying to answer his bosses' questions, and asking the tough questions.

Typically, Harrison receives the majority of his screen-time during the show's finale and rose ceremonies. He's the Bachelor's B-grade interviewer and unqualified therapist. Throughout the more recent seasons, Harrison's purpose on the show has been questioned. Leads have become more assertive and autonomous, which has left Harrison with little to do.

As reality programs become more scripted, The Bachelor franchise embraces the slip-ups of leads and expose behind the scenes elements. Earlier this season, Hannah sought her producers' guidance about Luke P. In the moment, they persuaded her to handle it, because viewers don't care about the middle man.

However, last night, Chris Harrison appeared out of the shadows to console Hannah. He played the role the network would want: he convinced Hannah to stay, just like he accomplished with Colton last season.

The next day, Chris and Hannah sat in a cafe to discuss how she felt and if she was hopeful she'd find love. It was difficult to ignore the insincere smize that never left his face.

Since Harrison's screen-time has dwindled over recent years, it's easy to be skeptical of his presence. After little to no screen time this season, the random hour-long recap felt misplaced. The unnecessary segment offered over 18 minutes of Harrison asking questions we all knew the answer to.

Viewers groaned as they watched and tweeted, frustrated that ABC used the episode's remaining hour to review old drama only six episodes into the season. As demonstrated by the negative reactions, Harrison's useless recap reminded the audience that he's only necessary when the show is effecting the lead's emotional well-being. The producers can try to insert Chris Harrison as a confidant, but we all know he wields no true influence.

TV

‘The Bachelorette’ Episode 4 Recap: The Beast Jumped Out.

Could Luke P. be the Beast to Hannah's Belle? We hope not.

Be afraid, be very afraid.

At this point, no one can truly predict what's to come this season, but Luke P, resident psycho of the season, really could slither his way into Hannah's heart. Since Courtney Robertson, no villain has been so close to winning the affections of the lead.

Leaving the mansion for Newport, Rhode Island our expectations were low. Somehow, for two weeks straight, the men brought it. They've been the voice of reason, emoting exactly what Bachelor nation feels.

One-on-One: Jed is really a Jeb

Fake news floated throughout Jed's one-on-one date: Hannah filled the void of conversation with made-up facts about Boston, they ate pints of Halo Top in fifty-degree weather, and Jed claimed the Celtic's Terry Rozier and Jaylen Brown are two of the best players in the NBA.

All that aside, Hannah's first verbal fumble of the season made audiences cringe, as she tried five times to remember the quotation, "taxation without representation," foreshadowing the crap to come.

Their Boston date should've been perfect: they strolled through the city, drank at Cheers!, and played basketball at TD Garden with two pros. Yet, the date felt wasted.

Most likely, Hannah could've had just as much fun with any other guy. They kissed, and then kissed some more when Jed made a hook shot. Really, Jaylen Brown stole the show.

The two Browns hit it off, with the 22-year-old offering sound advice that Hannah should choose, "somebody who's there for the rough times and the good times … somebody's who's going to accept you for your flaws and your beauty."

Cut-to the evening, where Jed admitted to Hannah he actually came on the show because he knew it was a huge platform for exposure and a great opportunity for his career. Hannah came packing with one hard-hitting question, asking, "How can you go from this is an opportunity to marriage?"

He responded, "it's beyond a show at this point."

She glowed, hearing exactly what any woman would want to hear. Dropping the issue a little too quickly, Jed received a red rose but the audience saw a red flag.

Group Date: Meat-Fest

The group dates this season have been physically demanding, featuring injuries and hard falls. Last night was no different: the men met at Fort Adams to suit up and play rugby.

What Hannah considers sexy is a man in his purest, masculine form. "Blood, sweat, and tears!" she cheered, repeatedly, in a concerning manner. She also repeatedly claimed she wanted no one to get "hurt," but really, the harder the hitting, the better and hotter for Hannah.

The convincing neanderthal, Luke P., got a little too into the game, claiming he "would do anything for Hannah." Kevin, unfortunately, dislocated his shoulder, which Hannah only kind of cared about because she only kind of cares about Kevin.

The Beast really jumped out, roaring with male energy that fueled Luke P.'s inner caveman fire. The now infamous smack-down occurred when Luke P. lifted Luke S. to flip him, throwing him to the ground and, reportedly, kneeing him in the face. Luke S., who I shall call Mousey Luke because he looks like a mouse in a suit, was pissed off, rightfully so. Luke tried to apologize, but Mousey Luke would not have it.

Hannah wasn't having it either. She called Luke out on his frustrating ways, to which he responded by lying and turning the attention towards Mousey Luke, accusing him of only being on the show to promote his tequila business. Diverting from the real problem, the rumor soon took root in Hannah's mind.

The issue gave Hannah a good reason to side with Luke since she already doesn't really like Mousey Luke. When questioned about the matter, Mousey Luke didn't respond well, irritated again by the lies and psychopathy Luke disguises as evidence.

The other men didn't take kindly to this either, especially when Luke tried to clarify what happened. In defense, Luke declared he didn't know what happened because it was all a blur. He then articulated exactly what he believed occurred, demonstrating the threat Luke poses to the group and everyone's safety. Everyone was distressed by Luke's presence, many were concerned, while others were just fed up he devoured their time with Hannah.

Instead of feeding into the drama, Garrett and Peter tried to take Hannah's mind off it by focusing on their individual relationships. The rest was noise, especially as Hannah and Peter made out, heavily, sensually on a couch.

Hannah evidently appreciated this, rewarding Garrett with the evening's rose, to the dismay of adorable Pilot Pete.

One-on-One: A Turning Point

Hannah Brown's facade was tired. She was meant to be on a date with Tyler C, but her mind was consumed by Luke.

Defying the show's format, Hannah admitted her relationship with Luke was the strongest thus far which made her question her own judgment.

Unable to plaster on her winning Alabama smile, she was up-front with Tyler C; she didn't want to be there. Instead of folding to her will, he stepped up, demonstrating exactly what Jaylen Brown told her to look for in a man, someone willing to be there for her highs and lows.

Tyler C. reassured her, saying, "I'll take whatever I can get, I want you in your highs and lows. I want to be the man on your side at the end of this and I think I can show you that today."

With another manly date in store, the two excitedly fished together. A real connection was visible on screen as he continued to cheer her up. The reality of life and the ability to be there for one another transcended the situation. There, unlike with Jed, their date went beyond the show. The way they joked with each other, being punny and funny, proved their real-life compatibility.

In the evening, Hannah posed a question to Tyler C., "Why are you really on the show?" Unexpectedly, his "big time griller, big time chiller" persona was set aside. He divulged his father almost died two months before the show, spending 25 days in the hospital with 10 in a coma. Tyler C. was reluctant to go on the show, but his father reassured him while watching The Bachelor together that Hannah's his girl.

He didn't believe it until he got out of the limo. Tyler C. recounted that for the first time in his life, he clutched his heart when he saw Hannah. Elated, she remembered that moment and through the TV, anyone could see the sparks fly. To viewers, the sky cleared and the stars aligned for them to meet.

Hannah admitted she was wary of him, believing he was a player. He smoothly retorted, "I'm here for Hannah, not the bachelorette." Tyler C. was there for the little jitters she gave him, knowing, "the world could be ours." Hannah gave Tyler C. his rightful rose, which should've been the end to a perfect date.

Instead, they celebrated with a private concert. Jake Owen had the live audience cheering and the couple kissing, giddy.

The Cocktail Party: Send The Lukes Home, Pls

The evening began with a dragged out, pointed toast about love and honesty. Thankfully, Pilot Pete swooped in to begin the evening on a soothing note. He wanted to "keep the momentum going" by sweetly asking her to be his girlfriend. The innocent, but cheeky moment was refreshing, especially when Hannah exclaimed, "Peter's my boyfriend!"

While the momentum did build, it was unfortunate because of the Luke drama. The rest of the evening could've been edited down to a two-on-one and no one would have noticed.

Mike, being the no-bs man of the season, informed Luke he's "the cause of her being unhappiest right now."

"Actually… no," Luke excused himself, failing to be accountable in the pettiest of ways.

The word psychopath was hurled at Luke, finally, to his face. Someone on production gave Luke their phone because, in the meme-able confessional, Luke read the definition of a psychopath, shoving the phone towards the camera to prove his point.

Mousey Luke attempted to redeem himself with Hannah to no avail. He tried another tactic, asking Luke to admit to Hannah he was incorrect about Mousey Luke's intentions. The male ensemble resoundingly agreed, especially Garrett who attempted to get through to Luke.

Being the psycho he must be, Luke began the conversation with, "I know this has been an emotional week… for the BOTH of us."

The awful start got worse when he bitched to Hannah that Mousey Luke told him to lie to her and say he's here for the right reasons.

Hannah obviously did not take that lightly and began the he-said-he-said merry-go-round.

When Mousey Luke discovered Luke's bullshit, he was astounded. When all was finally revealed to the group, every reaction was phenomenal. Dylan added the cherry on top, serving as the national mouthpiece, "I've never disliked someone more in my entire life."

The two Lukes stared at each other and the show cut-out to NEXT WEEK ON THE BACHELORETTE…

Safe to say the whole nation gasped.

TV

“The Bachelorette” Episode 3 Recap: Separating The Men from The Boys

With the Bachelorette juggling multiple personalities, Hannah stood defiant in her words and actions, taking ownership of what she deserves. For once, the majority of the men are living up to the challenge.

ABC

On recent seasons of The Bachelorette, the women have carried the show.

But the latest in the franchise propelled the story further and demonstrated that millennial men have the maturity, understanding, and compassion to provide support and equality in a relationship. For once, the audience watching feels like they know the majority of the contestants. What seemed petty last episode proved stellar and articulate in this one. Season 15 of The Bachelorette is shaping up to be one of the most compelling to date, thanks to Hannah and her men.

The recent group date choices continue to stir conversation. Between the pregnancy oriented date and one centered on the most obvious product placement in television history, there's a lot to unpack.

First Group Date: Everything a Viewer Could Want and More

Jason Biggs and his wife, Bachelor fanatic and famous actress, Jenny Mollen, made a guest appearance on the first group date. Hysterically, a few men could only refer to Biggs as "The American Pie guy." The contestants were quizzed on female anatomy and challenged to walk around with a pregnancy vest. During the quiz portion, Cam notably claimed the gestation period was two weeks instead of nine months. While others laughed, many grown men probably do not know what gestation even is, unfortunately.

Wobbling around, the men felt the weight of pregnancy. After the pregnancy suits, clothespins were clamped onto the contestants' nipples to simulate breastfeeding. The torturous date then became even worse.

The men were introduced to a birth simulator, which imitates birthing pain through electrode pads attached to the abdomen. The exercise offered a glimpse into the strength and endurance of mothers everywhere, as well as giving the audience a look at the empathic ability of each contestant. And yes, the majority of the men were clearly in quite a lot of pain.

John Paul Jones screamed like he was being stabbed, while the audience got a long, hard view of his nostrils. Tyler C. had an arm behind his back as if posing for a camera, smoldering through the pain. But really, only Jed connected with Hannah as they breathed together, working as a team.

The odd experience relayed into the evening.

At the cocktail party, Mike vulnerably explained how the date reminded him of a trying event from his past: his ex-girlfriend, who he planned to marry, had a miscarriage in her second trimester. He admitted he did not provide the emotional support necessary, which caused the relationship to crumble.

At the worst point possible, Cam inserted himself, interrupting Mike because he had something very important to tell Hannah. He continued to hover, to the point that Mike told him to leave and he'd come to get Cam once he's done.

Once Cam bothered his way into time with Hannah, he confessed his revelatory information: he quit his job to be on the show.

The evening spun out of control as Jonathan then interrupted Cam, forcing Cam to get up and escort him out. The painstaking pettiness of what Jonathan called, "what goes around comes around," separated the boys from the men.

The highlight of the evening, surprisingly, was Tyler C. who offered a hefty, but delightful monologue.

Please read and swoon:

"Today made me want to call my mama and tell her I love her. Women really do run this world and they deserve so much respect. That's one thing I will say about you is that I see this powerful woman and I firmly believe whatever your calling is, is you'll move mountains. You're a badass woman. That's one of the biggest turn-ons about you. I want to be the one that's fueling the fire. I mean that with every ounce of me. And I hope to be the guy cheerleading next to you and being your arm candy and supporting you."

Mike might have gotten the rose, but Tyler C. moved mountains with his comments.

One-On-One: Meh

The men were on the medical table on the previous date, but this portion saw Hannah in the hospital. What could have been dehydration, exhaustion, etc. led Hannah to cancel her date with Connor.

Luckily for Connor, he ended up having the best opportunity of all, visiting her room to take care of the Bachelorette. The isolated, cozy one-on-one time carried the potential for a true, intimate opportunity to really get to know one another, away from the typical lavish dates.

While they talked and Connor opened up about his family life, it became quite apparent Hannah was not really into him.

He didn't get a rose then, but after leaving cute sticky-notes around her temporary abode, she invited him to an already set-up, private concert with a pretty famous musician, Lucas Graham. There she gave him the rose, but probably only because ABC had paid for Graham to perform.

Second Group Date: The Secret Life of Synergy

Season 15 is keeping up its trend of pretty shitty second group dates. The date, which involved a photo-shoot with animals, was explained by Hannah, "So today we're going to draw inspiration from the new movie Secret Life of Pets 2." The photographer then regurgitated and reiterated, "The Secret Life of Pets 2 is a fun movie, it's really interesting to think about what pets really do when you're not at home!"

Demi, for some reason, snooped behind the scenes to try and catch any contestants who would take the bait of a flirty make-up artist. None engaged, but Luke P. still found a way to fuck up. He acted possessively throughout the photoshoot, especially when he witnessed Hannah kiss Pilot Pete in front of everyone. The bold move led Luke P. to interject, taking another photo-op with Hannah, this time balancing her on his back. After, he attempted to walk Hannah to her dressing room, an offer she assertively rejected.

His stalker-like actions continued into the night as Hannah brought Luke P. aside after he, "... stole the show again, but in a negative way." She expressed how irritated she was with him. She actually used the word irritated. The Bachelor and Bachelorettes in previous seasons focused on reassuring the contestants and easing their stress.

Going off script, Hannah dove into how Luke P. flaunting their relationship disrespected her and how she is exploring other relationships which, shocker, also have potential. Instead of comforting and taking ownership of someone else's issues, like many women do, Hannah gave him a call to action to "fix this."

In retaliation, Luke P. tried to reassert his dominance by telling the other guys he thought about leaving that day. He added that he does not see the relationship like Hannah does and blatantly rejected her perspective. Rather than own up to his frustrating actions, he continuously interrupted other contestants.

Luke P's biggest misstep was when he asked Pilot Pete to step aside from Hannah since he "hadn't talked to her yet." Meanwhile, Peter really hadn't spoken to her yet either and Hannah told Luke P. just that.

On a better note, Pilot Pete stuck the landing with Hannah. Chuckling, Peter whisked her away, and the two made out to the point her legs were around his waist. With his boyish charm, he called it his "smoothest take-off yet".

Of course, Peter got the rose, proving Hannah's good taste.

The Cookout: ABC Says Goodbye to Their Own

Chris Harrison used one of his three moments this episode to inform the men there would be a tailgate instead of a cocktail party. Cam took this as an opportunity to tell the men he needed to speak to Hannah first because he had something very personal and serious to tell her. This spun into a debate about the codes of The Bachelor/Bachelorette world.

Mike called BS, that there are "no rules of engagement." Tyler C retorted in a separate conversation that if there were no rules it'd be like a first-grade soccer game: no one would advance.

The Lord of The Flies scenario didn't stop Cam from sharing his every trial from the past couple of years. From his three surgeries, his grandmother's death, and having to re-home a puppy because of his health issues, he had a lot to spew.

Cam's urgency in telling Hannah this horrifying, mishmash of a sob story unveiled the disgusting point of necessity on the show: production wants contestants to reveal their most personal, traumatic trials. The show toxically equates deep insight and embracing a person's most difficult times to the hard work of furthering a relationship.

Recognizing this, Mike disclosed to Hannah that Cam spilled all his very personal information in hopes that she'd keep him around longer by giving him a "pity rose. "

Hannah did not feed into the Bachelor trope of a rewarding revealing trauma with a rose. Although, unfortunately, defying one trope gave rise to another. With one lesser villain (Cam) getting boot gave rise to another (Luke P).

The Bachelor franchise continuously uses interruptions from contestants as an introductory, villainous trait. Hannah's annoyance with Cam gave way to annoyance towards Luke P. Luke P's stalkerish, possessive, and aggressive persona forced production to move off script and consider how to manage such a character. The dilemma will certainly unfold in the coming episodes, and when it does, it will be a turning point for Hannah and a true test of her strength.

With 15 men left, the show must go on without Always Be Cam. Thankfully, that won't be a problem as long as the men keep up the quality content.

NEXT WEEK ON THE BACHELORETTE...