the bachelor

This year's cast includes pageant queens and women who dress up in sloth costumes to impress.

It’s a new year, which means a new season of ABC’s “The Bachelor” is back and Mondays just got a little better. This time around, the main man on our TV screens is Colton Underwood, best known as the virgin who got dumped on Becca Kufrin’s season of “The Bachelorette” last year.

Colton is a former professional football player for the San Diego Chargers, who made it to the top four on “The Bachelorette” last summer. He was sent home a week before the top three fantasy suite dates. After getting his heart broken, viewers saw him on season 5 of “Bachelor in Paradise” where he briefly dated former “The Bachelor” contestant Tia Booth. Their relationship ended and he was announced as the new bachelor shortly after.

Ever since his big revelation on national television, Colton’s virginity seems to be a topic that is sure to be continually discussed throughout his season and influence what he decides to do in the infamous fantasy suite later on. I think ABC may have gone a little too far with this information since they released a promo photo for the show with him replicating the movie poster for “The 40-Year-Old Virgin.” Since so much time has passed since he first made that revelation, this should be something people gotten over by now.

Each season, there are always unforgettable limo arrivals. During this season’s premiere we saw a contestant drive up to the mansion in a police car referring to herself as the “fashion police,” a contestant who dressed up as Cinderella and arrived in a carriage and a contestant who walked out of the limo in a sloth costume. A few of the women came out of the limo and made sure to joke about Colton’s virginity as they met him for the first time.

Caitlin, a realtor from Toronto, walked up to Colton holding a cherry balloon in her hand, introduced herself to him and popped the balloon, saying that she “popped his cherry.” Katie, a medical sales representative, came up to Colton, did a card trick and mentioned that she took his “v-card” since she picked a card that a had the letter v on it. These references to Colton’s personal decision felt like a never-ending pattern.

Contestants Nicole, Revian and Nina impressed him by introducing themselves in other languages, including Mandarin, Spanish and Croatian. Contestant Bri also sparked a reaction by faking an Australian accent that Colton thought was real during her introduction.

With a new season of “The Bachelor” also comes contestants with a variety of bizarre “occupations” that show up on the screen in an infamous yellow box. Two of the contestants are pageant queens including Caelynn (Miss North Carolina 2018) and Hannah B. (Miss Alabama 2018). Heather’s “occupation” was stated as “never been kissed.” Tayshia’s occupation is a phlebotomist, which is a person who draws blood from patients.

Fashion is so important during night one of “The Bachelor” and it’s always exciting to see what dresses the women have on. This is the night when a majority of the women wear evening gowns and try to leave their best first impression for the bachelor. This year, the main outfit trend of the night was sequin or sparkly dresses. There was a point in the episode when at least four girls in a row walked out in sequin dresses.

Night one also introduced viewers to the villain of the season: Catherine, who rubbed many of the women the wrong way. She reminded me of Corinne Olympios, the infamous villain from Nick Viall’s season back in 2017. Catherine interrupted conversations and spoke to Colton four times in one night as opposed to the typical singular conversation. Contestant Onyeka had a conversation with Catherine where she expressed concerns about her behavior that she thought of as a little too aggressive.

Then there’s the first impression rose which is the first rose that Colton hands out to the lucky woman he best connected with before the actual rose ceremony. While I thought that speech pathologist Cassie or Caelynn would receive this rose, it went to Hannah G.

The episode ended with the first rose ceremony. Nothing too dramatic happened, but seven women were sent home. Viewers got to see a preview of the season ahead and it looks like there’ll be much more virginity talk, lots of tears, tension between the women and Colton running off and potentially going missing.

Overall, the season premiere was pretty standard for night one in the bachelor mansion, but I look forward to seeing what happens and who Colton will choose in the end, if he even does choose someone, or if he leaves the show without a fiancé.

Contact Vanessa Nikolic at nikolivx@dukes.jmu.edu. For more on the culture, arts and lifestyle of the JMU and Harrisonburg communities, follow the culture desk on Twitter @Breeze_Culture.