The season premiere began with the requisite montage of Ali livin' her life, lookin' for love. She walked along beaches, kicked around a soccer ball and gazed off into the distance wearing a bikini. (I am all about gender equality, but those lingering ab-shots seem so much less awkward when they do it to The Bachelor.) "I can only imagine how much I'm gonna grow and how much a better person I'm gonna be for this experience [sic]," Ali mused. Yup. That's why people go on this show. To grow as people. Good luck with that Ali.
Anyway, Chris Harrison called her America's Sweetheart and while I'm not totally sure how being the reject of the reject of the reject of the reject of the reject of the reject warrants that title, I've learned it's always better to just take Chris' word for things. So "America's Sweetheart" was doing just fine in her montage....and then she walked out of her limo wearing what looked like funeral parlor curtains. Funeral parlor curtains so heavy, she had to hoist them up every time she moved; funeral parlor curtains that fit so poorly, she had to constantly pull up the straps to keep from pushing The Bachelorette into R-rated territory. (Yes, I know what you're thinking, but fantasy suites are about love, people. LOVE.)
And so, not 30 minutes into the whole ordeal I was shouting at the screen, "Why Ali, why?" Was it some sort of metaphor? To represent the death of her single life? And why was she wearing such a massive, cumbersome, unflattering dress? Was it some sort of convoluted feminist statement about monogamy? I mean, the dress almost made her look... Holy failed birth-control! Could she be.... Could it be Jake's? No, no that's crazy, right? Fashion-failure and possible imaginary pregnancy aside, Ali does get points for telling Chris that being on the show felt "unreal" and not misusing surreal like everything Bachelor and Bachelorette past. A shining sliver of hope? No, because soon after the losers --sorry, potential future husbands--arrived.
There's Frank, the painfully over-enthusiastic guy who left his swanky job and condo to move in with his parents and write screenplays; Cardboard Kasey who told Ali that even if he got kicked off the first night, he'd always "protect and guard" her heart (not creepy at all, complete stranger); Kyle, the self-proclaimed mountain-man (official job title "Outdoorsman") who was cute but clearly stoned (and sadly didn't make it past episode 1); John C. who got down on one knee and offered Ali a fake ring (a gag that I bet seemed much cooler when he was getting boozed up in the limo); and Jonathan, the Texas weatherman who's only personality trait seems to be that he is a Texas weatherman.
I've got to hand it these guys for at least trying really hard, if not succeeding. They sang, they danced. Two of them jumped on top of their limos and one even did a flip down to the ground. About a dozen of them gave Ali their jackets to wear--which made me wonder why they all kept taking them back. Did she smell bad? Was the scent of morgue from her curtain-dress seeping into their blazers? Nearly every guy gave Ali a present (a present that a five year old would probably give his mom, mind you) and by the end of the evening, she was left with paper leaves, a fake ring, real and fake roses, a magnet, a wooden heart, a baby-shoe key chain (Wait a minute is that for....?) and a scrapbook from Wisconsin Kirk. If it had had cheese in it, I would have let the whole thing go, but it didn't. It had pictures of Kirk in it. He's off my list.
There's always one guy who teaches the Bachelorette to salsa. Last night, that guy was Roberto. It did get him a first impression rose, which means he'll stick around for a while but won't be in it for the long haul. It also garnered him the nicknames Salsa, Rico Suave and the guy who "did some hot sauce dance". Cute But Possibly Narcissistic Hunter wrote a song that he played on his ukulele. The first line was, "They say that love it ain't easy." Just kidding!
Jason was the guy who hated on everyone. I thought he might be up for Resident D-bag Who's Not There for the Right Reasons, but he didn't make it past the first rose ceremony. Shooter (yeah, you heard me right) opened with a promise to explain his nickname. He did, and it was about exactly what you think it's about and he went home rose-less. But I bet he gets tons of dates after that.
Cardboard Kasey took some one-on-one time to remind Ali that he would guard and protect her heart, in case it wasn't creepy enough the first time. Then he explained that his dad cheated on his mom, which still didn't explain why he reminds me of cardboard. Chris L, on the other hand, decided to gloss over that fact that his mom was dead. Unwilling to share intimate details about his life's greatest tragedies before the first real date? Totally not gonna make it. Somehow though, he squeezed through the first rose ceremony, but unless he starts bringing the tears soon, he's going home.
Craig R. was the first warn Ali that some guys weren't there for the right reasons. She was clearly not interested in him, but kept him around to rat out the bad guys. At one point, all the Prince Charmings had to vote on the guy they thought was there for the wrong reasons. They picked Justin, a Canadian "Entertainment Wrestler" with a broken leg who they thought was only there to promote his career. Because viewers are really going to flock to Canada to see the guy who broke his leg fake-wrestling. Ali decided to give him a rose anyway. Craig from Canada pulled through as Resident Bad Guy by the end of the episode. (And no, I don't get all the hating on the Canadians. They're foreign, I guess?) All the guys had bad vibes about him. They also hated his hair. You know how it is.
I'm going to be honest, I don't really have any front runners yet. Roberto and Hunter will definitely be around for a while. Jesse the Contractor who made the wooden heart was playing the whole down-to-earth-real-guy angle pretty well. Otherwise, one of those identical tall, brown-haired guys who don't seem crazy will probably win in the end. But for now, I can't tell them apart.
The season preview promised lots of new and exciting Bachelorette moments. Making out in hot tubs! Helicopter Rides! Feeding Ducks! Kissing overlooking dramatic city views! Kissing overlooking sweeping vistas! Guys who are there for the wrong reasons! Guys without shirts! Guys with girlfriends! There also may a bachelor who has a breakdown from all the drama, which is totally inappropriate and not funny at all...
Next Week's Drinking Game
Oh heck, let's start this season off with a bang, we'll need it.
Every time Ali giggles.
Have fun and please don't drive.