The Bachelor: Countdown to Arie (TV Review)

The Bachelor: Countdown to Arie (2017)

By Jenna Zine (Six Pack) –

The Bachelor franchise is heading into its 22nd season (!!!), with the first episode airing New Year’s Day of 2018. (Talk about the perfect hangover cure!) Thanks to popular frontrunner Peter Kraus (from Rachel Lindsay’s season of The Bachelorette) playing hard to get with producers, we now have racecar driver/real estate agent Arie Luyendyk Jr. as the man 20+ ladies will vie for in a quest for eternal love. And because Arie has not been on television in 5 years, he is absolutely ancient and not one person in Bachelor Nation remembers him. Hence this special television extravaganza to (re)introduce him to viewers. Yay!

A Toast

Is there a guiltier pleasure than The Bachelor franchise? The ludicrous premise has horrified and delighted audiences for an astounding 15 years and is permanently embedded in pop culture. It’s always the most dramatic season ever, and this year promises to be no different. So let’s get down to the Kissing Bandit’s (Arie’s skin-crawling nickname) plans, as well as the drama and tears that are sure to ensue in the following months!

Beer Two

Perennial host Chris Harrison (a shout-out to mimosas!) kicks off this sneak peek, letting us know that January will be full of, “sexy romance, crazy emotional drama, and, of course, true love.” Well, at least two of those three things will be true! Did he also just say it will be, “one of the most romantic seasons in Bachelor history”? Yes, yes he did. Congrats to the franchise that both gaslights and Groundhog Day’s its audience!

First, Chris takes us back to Arie’s heartbreak during Emily Maynard’s Bachelorette season when Arie thought he was a lock for the single mom’s heart. Instead he lost out to Jef Holm – yes, a man who spells his name with one “f.” We see Arie wandering around, unable to move on, all to prove that he is a very sensitive man who loves to love! Personally all I see are red flags. A man who hasn’t gotten over a brief, televised love affair that ended five years ago? Hello, issues!

Beer Three

Speaking of love affairs that have ended, where is Courtney Robertson? My guess is the producers have paid her to lay low on social media, as Arie’s reputation is more crucial than ever, at this moment. * Courtney, the “winner” of Ben Flajnik’s Bachelor season, and Arie had a passionate fling that is described, in detail, in her juicy tell-all I Didn’t Come Here to Make Friends: Confessions of a Reality Show Villain. (No, I am not making this title up!) In case you were wondering, Courtney says Arie is, “incredibly passionate and utilizes his entire body in his lovemaking. And he knows exactly what positions make a woman feel comfortable and satisfied.” Translation – those fantasy suite dates are gonna be LIT! Other translation – Robertson has the dirt and wouldn’t be shy about sharing even more. After all, they were reportedly still messing around, off and on, up until earlier this year. Will she stay off the radar for Luyendyk Jr.’s season? I, for one, am praying that she does NOT! Blow up that Twitter, girl.

*(I’m also curious how Arie and the franchise will fair in the long-awaited #MeToo era, as Bachelor In Paradise barely survived a huge sexual assault scandal this summer, and Luyendyk Jr. is reported to have allegedly roamed college campuses in search of hot hookups with barely legal coeds. Not a good look for either!)

Beer Four

Now it’s time to meet the woman who’ve agreed to sign up for this mess! Including:

  • A professional wedding photographer! (Hmm, what will she be thinking about?)
  • A gal that lives in Weiner, Aransas who loooves to shoot guns! (You’re not Raven. Don’t try to be Raven.)
  • A pert nanny with a pixie cut. Look – she has short hair! She must be unique because she does not have extensions!
  • A nurse who “loves blood; the more, the better.” It seems the very goal of your job would be less blood, but … okay.
  • A woman who collects taxidermy because she can “keep it forever.” One word to Arie: Run.
  • A realtor who also grew up around cars! OMG, she and Arie have so much in common. Houses and vehicles? Just get hitched already, you crazy one-percenters!

Needless to say, it’s gonna be a shit show of boobs, abs, and females pitted to compete against each other. Hello, 2018 – you have not changed one bit. (For a complete/detailed list of upcoming contestants, check out Reality Steve – but only if you don’t mind spoilers).

Beer Five

We now know that Arie, the Kissing Bandit, is as sensitive as he is handsome. He is a really good guy! (cough) But don’t forget about that passion, people! In case you need help, Chris Harrison has detailed all the ways in which Luyendyk Jr. likes to get romantical. Kissing styles include the:

  • One-handed cheek caress.
  • Two-handed face fondle.
  • Tender, tasteful touch.
  • Slow and sultry lip-lock.
  • Hair stroke/lean in.
  • Full on French.
  • Passionate “hello” kiss.
  • And the popular super-sexy-up-against-a-wall make out!

I pity the poor intern that had to go through old footage and name all these “moves.” I cannot even describe how wildly uncomfortable this section of the show was; I think I have PTSD. To balance the creepiness, the producers also thoughtfully added “Worst Kisses in Bachelor History.” How kind! They are:

  • Chris Soules & Ashely Iaconette: This confirms what we already know – Ashley has no game!
  • JoJo Fletcher & Wells Adams: Old coffee grinds have more chemistry than these two.
  • Jake Pavelka & Michelle: She begged for a kiss he didn’t want to give. Ouch.
  • Emily Maynard & Doug Clerget: He went in for a smooch after getting eliminated. Too late, dude!
  • Josh Murray & Amanda Stanton: He managed to gross out Bachelor In Paradise viewers with his constant moaning and endless pizza consumption.
  • Rachel Lindsay & Fred Johnson: They met in grade school, and she still thinks of him as a little boy two decades later. This should’ve stopped way before a failed lip-lock!
  • All of Bachelor Pad Casey: The dude smelled. End of story.
  • Carly Waddell & Evan Bass: It’s still a total mystery as to how these two went from friend zone to bone zone.
  • Jason Mesnick & Shannon Bair: She was crying and wiped her nose with a napkin, pieces of which remained on her face as she went in for a smooch. As horrifying as it sounds.
  • Ben Flajnik & Jamie Otis: She tried to straddle him all sexy-like… right as her dress ripped. There’s no coming back from that.

Beer Six

Were you doubting that the system works? Because falling in love with a stranger on network television totally works! Here’s proof of couples who’ve “made it,” including:

  • Rachel Lindsay & Not Peter (aka Bryan Abasolo), who are living together while enjoying time with Rachel’s adorable dog, Copper. Bryan moved to Texas to join Rachel, “like the next day,” after filming wrapped. And that is not at all a concerning or desperate sign, okay?!
  • Tanner & Jade Tolbert (nee Roper), who met and subsequently married on Bachelor In Paradise. They now have a baby. (They show the adorable newborn and Tanner says, “We had an inside baby. Now we have an outside baby.” Because #science.)
  • Sean & Catherine Lowe (nee Giudici), who met on Sean’s season of The Bachelor and are now on Baby #2. Not a lot of shade to throw here, as Sean is genuinely funny and one of my favorite alums to follow on Twitter.
  • The aforementioned Evan Bass & Carly Waddell. Again, a total mystery as to how Carly went from being repulsed by Evan to marrying him and having his baby. Methinks she never recovered from her Bachelor In Paradise breakup with Kirk Dewindt and decided to get off the carousel of love. Can I trademark “carousel of love”?

No word as to why JoJo Fletcher & Jordan Rodgers or Kaitlyn Bristowe & Shawn Booth were left off this illustrious list, as both couples are still together and each have engagement/marriage plans in the works. All I know is the show favors some past contestants more than others, and these kids have seemingly fallen off the Bachelor family radar. I’m going to go out on a limb and say this is not the worst thing to happen to these people.


All this fun is followed up by a sneak peek of Arie’s most dramatic season ever, resplendent with shots of gals crying, the Kissing Bandit macking, trips to the desert, Paris, and Tuscany, plus more tears. It looks like a god damn mess. I, for one, cannot wait. Look for my Bachelor recaps here at MovieBoozer in 2018. In the meantime, happy holidays and many Arie dreams to you!

About Jenna Zine

Jenna Zine is a writer, unashamed Bachelor franchise recapper & live-tweeter (@JennaZine1), drummer, and occasional standup comic. She's probably somewhere complaining about her bangs. Find more at

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