05/15/2012 06:15 pm ET Updated Jul 15, 2012

'The Bachelorette' Premiere: Emily Maynard Goes On A Journey For Love ... And A Father Figure

Hot Single Mom Seeks Dude/Dad

The world's premier television show for masochists has officially returned. That's right ladies and gentleman, "The Bachelorette" is back, ready take viewers on an epic journey full of true love, frenemies, dude tears and vistas of North Carolina. (Because in case this wasn't stressed enough in the previews, this season starts off in Emily's hometown of Charlotte.)

Emily Maynard is this season's leading lady. Best known as the woman bachelor Brad Womack proposed to and then split from, Emily is a 26-year-old single mom with a tragic past -- her NASCAR driver fiance died in a plane crash in 2004, and she found out she was pregnant days later. Now she lives in a gorgeous house with her daughter Ricki but (sad single woman alert! cue the strategic shots of her walking forlornly down a winding staircase!) she's lonely. That's where "The Bachelorette" and Emily's 25 potential suitors come in ... because we all know how many lasting and successful relationships the "Bachelor" franchise has produced (answer: exactly three).

This season of "The Bachelorette" promises to be the most dramatic/exciting/different (insert any impassioned word Chris Harrison might use) season yet because Emily's looking not just for a hubby, she's looking for a father figure for Ricki. Yup, Emily's adorable daughter will be accompanying her from destination to destination along her epic quest for a diamond. (No word yet on when she'll actually meet any of her mom's potential love interests.) Because all Emily really wants is "a minivan full of babies!"

Meet (Some Of) The Men: Soul Patches, Single Dads And Sk8er Bois
First up, video spotlights of some of the bachelors. And since time is of the essence, only seven of Ricki's potential fathers/Emily's potential suitors get profiled:

Kalon, 27: Used to be a "loud, obnoxious womanizer" but now he wears glasses and is totally dependable and down to earth. Oh and he has a private helicopter ... NBD.

Ryan, 31: Pro-football player turned sports trainer. He has lots of muscles. And sometimes helps adorable children lift giant tires.

Tony, 31: I would talk about how he's a lumber trader and a fit single dad, but his soul patch is just too distracting.

Lerone, 29: A real estate consultant who wants a family and thinks single moms are hot. Also the show's token nod to any semblance of racial diversity.

David, 33: David is a singer-songwriter from New York who loves SAT vocab and carrying his guitar through Central Park. A prime example of why dating in NYC is the worst.

Charlie, 32: A southern gentleman from Nashville with a traumatic past. He fell off a balcony and sustained a severe brain injury, broken ribs and a punctured lung. Unfortunately for him, besides the injury, he seems pretty boring.

Jef, 27: Says he's from Salt Lake City, but looks more suited to Brooklyn's Williamsburg neighborhood. He's the CEO of a socially responsible bottled water company (swoon!) but he's also a free spirit who skateboards. (Avril Lavigne will be writing a song about him any day now, if Avril Lavigne still writes songs.)

Arie, 30: The Indy car driver ABC brought on the show to ensure Emily has to talk about her dead fiance as much as possible.

Eggs And Helicopters Make The Best First Impressions
After a short interview where Harrison advises Emily not to bring up the whole "minivan full of babies" on the first date, it's time for the official meet-and-greets. All the guys think Emily is hot, and she assures each man that she's "so glad [he's] here." Since most of the dudes are so nondescript that I can't even recall their names without looking them up, I'll just leave you with a few highlights:

--Doug is a hugger and single dad suitor number two.
--Joe jumps around like a leprechaun.
--Aaron is a biology teacher who makes a terrible pun about "chemistry."
--Alessandro is Brazilian. He speaks Portuguese to Emily and she responds with "Gracias." Oy.
--Jef throws his skateboard aside when he meets Emily. Because he's SUCH A REBEL.
--Stevie is an MC with a penchant for emerald green shirts and terribly cheesy dance moves. He also brings a boombox with him to the house, reminding us all that no one has carried a boombox since the mid-'90s.
--Tony brings Emily his soul patch and a glass slipper. Emily's response? "I believe in love and fabulous shoes." Word.
--Randy dresses up like an old lady, complete with a cane, a wig and a rip away outfit.
--Nate is 100% normal. Emily thinks he's "so cute."
--Brent has six kids and wears a nametag.
--Travis brings an egg that symbolizes Emily and Ricki to "take care of." We've officially found this season's equivalent of "serve and protect" Kasey Kahl.
--Alejandro is a mushroom farmer who actually does speak Spanish. This time Emily responds in the correct language.
--Kalon arrives in his helicopter ... and a villain is born. I assume he'll be vying with last season's Courtney for "most hated."

After all the guys try to steal Emily away for alone time and feel emasculated by Kalon's helicopter -- dubbing him "Helicopter Guy" -- Doug wins the first impression rose. He gives Emily a legitimately adorable letter written by his 11-year-old son. Nice move, buddy.

Chris Harrison Alert: "It's The Final Rose Tonight"
The rose ceremony isn't all that exciting since it's the first episode. Emily is totally surprised that she actually really liked some of these fame monsters/eligible bachelors, and says that the guys have "exceeded [her] expectations a million times over."

Safe: Doug (with the first impression rose), Chris, Ryan, Kalon, Arie, Charlie, Jef, Nate, Sean, Joe, Kyle, Aaron, Alejandro, John, Alessandro, Michael, Stevie and Tony. Then there's only one rose left -- as Chris Harrison so kindly informs us. It goes to Travis ... and his egg ... because really what's the point of having a guy with an egg if he only sticks around for one episode?

The rest of the guys say their goodbyes, and "The Bachelorette" keeps its track record of all-white contestants.

What To Look Forward To ...
Emily wants a husband "so bad"! More journeys! London! Men playing with kids! Dolly Parton! Lots of man tears! Someone calls Ricki "baggage"! Emily says "Get the f*ck out"! Lightning! Rain! Roses!

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