Tensions with North Korea are threatening to boil over, Zimbabwe is in the grips of political upheaval, and former Bachelor Blake Garvey is missing.
OK, not officially. But the stripper-turned-auctioneer-turned-reality television star has gone into a sort of self-imposed hiding over the past year, and we have taken it upon ourselves to provide the world with some much-needed analysis; to answer the whos, the whats and the whys of it all.
(And people say ‘real journalism’ is dead. Pft.)
You’ll remember Garvey, I’m sure. He was the Perth-based Bachelor from Season 2; the one with a penchant for ‘dirty street pies’ and blue suits, who boasts a voice as low as he is tall.
If that doesn’t ring any bells, you may know him by another name: ‘the most hated man in Australia’. No? How about ‘Love rat’?
(Not our phrases, for the record.)
Garvey earned the titles from fans and the press, after the schamozzle that was the 2014 finale of the Channel 10 show. While the episode showed his romantic proposal to contestant Sam Frost, Garvey soon announced that he’d subsequently dumped her in favour of second-runner-up, Louise Pillidge.
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“When you have that time together and you feel that it’s not quite right, you have to listen to your heart,” he told The Project at the time. “You have to trust your gut and that’s what I’ve done and that’s why I’m in this position now.”
But alas, feelings are as changeable as Osher Gunsberg’s hair, and the pair too split in 2016. It would be disingenuous to say fans didn’t see it coming, but few would have predicted it would be announced in the way it was: via a joint covershoot for New Idea.
Pillidge told the publication she’d been left “crying, numb and angry” by the breakup, yet there they were, captured in glossy ink, standing side-by-side, gazing forlornly out across the Indian Ocean.
I guess they just wanted us to know.
In the months since, little has been heard from Garvey. He’s presumably working away at his business, Elite Auctions, in Perth, and managing the impressive feat of avoiding detection by the paparazzi, waiting for everyone to cool down and move on.
But with Sam Frost having made the jump from reality TV world into commercial radio, her continuing presence in the public eye means Australia shan’t easily forget what happened back in 2014. We are a competitive people, and Season 2 is one of just two blemishes on our otherwise perfect Bach record – Tim and Anna, Sam and Snez, Matty and Laura; all still together. Still.
At least Frost can laugh about it. This Halloween she went as herself. “Reliving my nightmare,” the 28-year-old wrote on Instagram. “Getting engaged for 12.3 seconds on national TV.”
The jabs, the digs, the constant media requests, none of it could coax a peep out of Garvey until rumours spread that he was making a return to television via forthcoming all-stars series Bachelor in Paradise.
"No way, no how, no chance am I going on Bachelors in Paradise," he wrote on Facebook. "That is all.”
So at least we know one more thing about where he isn't.
Perhaps he senses we're not quite over 2014? Don't worry Blake, we'll get there. Eventually.