reality tv

'I was prepared to be bored with The Bachelors. I was very, very wrong.'

Since we're amongst friends here, let's be honest: The Bachelor Australia hasn't been very good in recent years. 

When the series first began in 2013, it was revolutionary. Sure, the show was already a fixture in the States by then, but as we very well know, reality television – especially dating shows – doesn't always translate across borders. It was a gamble for Network 10, which, to their credit, they have never shied away from, and it paid off. 

In that first season, the stars aligned: Tim Robards was dashing and handsome as the titular bachelor, Anna Robards (nee Heinrich) was stunning and personable, Osher was polished and warm, all the women were likeable, and there was just the right amount of drama.

Moreover, the love story between Tim and Anna was front and centre. It was obvious he would choose her in the end, and that wasn't a bad thing.

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Video via Network 10.

But the seasons following got progressively worse. 

The producers began fixating on fooling us, the audience, on who the bachelor would choose, on who would step out of that car first. It became all about the heightened drama and lost focus on what the show was about at its core: a love story. And yes, we can call it a love story with a straight face because the evidence is plain: In the nine seasons so far, five of those couples are still together – three are married, two are engaged, and there are five Bachelor babies. 


But, like the roses the bachelor hands out, the series got stale. 

It lost the ability to surprise us due to its dead giveaways. We knew that the women who got the "twinkling, fairytale" music when they met the bachelor meant they were serious contenders for his heart. The women who got the "comedy" music were there for laughs... or to create drama. 

It got old. The mansion with its thousands of candles got old. Osher got old. We got old.

So when Network 10 revealed there would be three bachelors (Felix Von Hofe, Thomas Mallucedi, and Jed McIntosh) for 2023 instead of the usual one, I was skeptical. While most people's first impulse was to focus on the lack of diversity, I was just hoping for diversity of personality.

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And since we are being honest, I will tell you I didn't hold out much hope. 

When I was provided with the first two episodes of The Bachelors, I watched to settle some vague sense of curiosity. I was prepared to be bored. I was prepared to even hate it.

But, as it turns out, I was very, very wrong.

I won't give away any spoilers (although there are quite a few out there already) but instead, walk you through what changed my mind about this shaken-up season. 


But firstly, let's talk about the bachelors themselves. Jed, who most people labelled a wannabe Machine Gun Kelly, is not your normal-looking bachelor with his tattoos and eyeliner and sparkly suits. But never judge a book by its cover, because he's clearly the best of the three. He's lots of fun and very personable. The other bachelor Felix, who most people deemed "the hot one", certainly brings the DRAMA (you'll see what I mean), while Italian stallion Thomas seems like a sweetheart.

Bachelors Felix, Jed, and Thomas. Image: Network 10.


As for all those dead giveaways? They're gone. All of them. 

The way the bachelors meet the women is different to past seasons so the hokey music and ballgowns galore have been put to rest, thank goodness. The women they're dating are by turns interesting and bold and shy and nice; you know, like real people. And they have quite a bit of power in The Bachelors which I'm definitely down for.

It's no secret the show was filmed in the Gold Coast instead of Sydney so there is no "mansion of a thousand candles" in sight. And there have been reports that this year, the "fantasy suites" will feature in the show. This has been a staple in the American series for a long time, and involves the bachelor/s choosing to ask their final three whether they would like to join him in the fantasy suite to... talk... and other... stuff.

Even though there are three bachelors, nothing feels rushed. Each man's "journey" – I know, I know, we hate that word – is played out on screen in a way that allows the audience to get to know him and the women he is dating.

So, forget all the negativity you've heard and read about the show, and give it a shot. Maybe you'll still hate it, in which case you can come here and comment below to tell me how wrong I am. Or maybe you'll like it again. In which case, please come here and comment below to tell me how right I am. I need the validation.

Spread the love, everyone! 

The Bachelors Australia premieres on Monday January 9, 2023, on 10 and 10 Play. 

Feature Image: Network 10.