Hola, Bachelor Nation! I have never even seen Bachelor In Paradise before, but this new season features so many of my favorite guys from Katie’s season like Connor, James, and Tre—not to mention Abigail, Jessenia, and Serena P. from Matt’s—that I felt honor-bound to drop on the Bachelor In Paradise premiere. Also, I am still recovering from all the Katie-Greg venom in last week’s Bachelorette finale, like we all are. So let’s whip up some piña coladas and buckle up. Because this also means we have to see Karl again. And Queen, now self-described Goddess, Victoria. Also, Grocery Store Joe is like Sad Joe now.
But honestly, even in my first time around, I can totally see the appeal of Paradise. Many of these young men and women seem fun (some don’t, let’s be honest), and it’s nice to see them get a chance to spark with someone other than whoever the Bachelor/Bachelorette lead was on their season. Like how much Abigail lit up with someone like Noah, as compared to the more sedate Matt James. Or Connor getting the first kiss this season after getting booted by Katie for lack of chemistry.
You also have to give it to Bachelor In Paradise producers and editors for leaning in to the party atmosphere of Paradise. The descriptors of the contestants are hilarious: not just “Tayshia’s season” but “Naked,” “Already overheating,” “Champagne Girl,” and best of all, “Dated Tre’s uncle.” And the nature footage, like sand crabs and tropical birds wisely heading for the hills upon Victoria’s arrival, are priceless. The BIP powers-that-be obviously know who the fan favorites are and what the audience is going to want to see: like Grocery Store Joe staring at the waves and contemplating the life path that brought him back to this reality show franchise, Victoria trying to flirt at the bar and failing miserably, or Demi making a dramatic entrance at the end of the episode.
Maybe it was partly the pandemic that led the BIP contestants to hook up in such record numbers this premiere; according to Wells the bartender, the most amorous first Paradise night ever. They probably had to quarantine for a while before coming on this show, they’re excited to be there, they’re surrounded by attractive people, it’s totally understandable. It’s also nice at this stage of the game when people actually seem psyched to see each other/meet each other, and are happy to see other couples pair off, like Abigail and Noah on their date, and Serena and Joe hooking up. Even Karl and Victoria got hugs.
But this also seems like the calm before the storm, because nothing screams “drama” like a Bachelor production showing the tears-filled teaser for the rest of the season. Joe’s ex-fiancee Kendall is apparently going to show up and throw a wrench into his burgeoning relationship with Serena. Kenny is going to juggle Mira and Demi? And Aaron and Thomas are going to face off again. It looks like a wild ride, but it also indicates what Paradise has over the show(s) that spawned it: It features all of the fun social stuff, without the drag of showing the same person anguishing over finding their one true love on TV week after week. On Paradise if Jessenia and Ivan don’t work out, say, there are plenty of other couples to focus on, more than ever this season. Honestly, there are worse ways to wind up your summer.
- “David Spade, what the fuck are you doing here?”
- And he was… okay, I guess? Seemed kind of awkward, but had a few funny lines. And was the footage of Spade struggling with a champagne bottle meant to indicate how difficult it is to actually open a champagne bottle, offering some justice for Kelsey? Because that seemed to go on forever.
- “You have milk of magnesia on your face?”
- Of all of Katie’s rejects, I was most excited to see Tre, honestly.
- I kinda liked Kenny on Katie’s season—plus, he’s from my mom’s hometown—but the naked intro was a bit much. Surely he could have added some shorts or something after the first hour or so.
- Tahzjuan is all of us when she says: “I don’t want to talk to Karl.”
- I also liked how they showed the cast members actually eating, which is always a big mystery on The Bachelor/Bachelorette. Those guys don’t even eat any actual food on their dinner dates.
- Sorry, I just do not get the appeal of Brendan.
- Abigail and Noah are adorable and I may have to tune in again next week just to make sure they’re still together. Also am excited to see Becca, one of the best Bachelorettes ever, show up.
- Later to come this season as guest hosts: Lil Jon, Lance Bass, and my fave, Tituss Burgess. But why didn’t they just find a new bartender and promote Wells Adams to host? He is very charming and obviously knows the ropes.
- Thanks for hanging out with me or the Bachelor In Paradise premiere, y’all! I probably won’t be checking in on a weekly basis, but may pop back in again if something exceptionally dramatic happens—which, judging from that trailer, seems like an inevitability.