Kit Steinkellner
August 25, 2014 6:00 am

“No, no, no, no, no,” I told my brother. “You already got me hooked on Bachelor/Bachelorette. Isn’t that bad enough? Why are you trying to trick me into watching more time-suck television?”

“No, you don’t understand,” said my brother, who is one of the last people you would expect to be into The Bachelormuch less a Bachelor SPIN-OFF. “It’s like the best show on television right now.”

So I gave it an episode. Then I gave it another episode. Then I was all caught up and like, COUNTING THE MINUTES until next week’s BACK-TO-BACK episodes, or as I have lately taken to calling it, “The Event of the Millennium.”

So what IS Bachelor in Paradise and why is it seriously such a good show that when I was watching it on Hulu my husband asked me to unplug my headphones so he could hear what was going on, and then asked if he could watch with me from now on. My husband hates reality television and pop music and US Weekly and all the dumb things I love and still, he too, was won over by the witchy ways of Bachelor in Paradise.

So we all know what Bachelor and Bachelorette are (A bunch of straight girls vying to win the heart of a straight dude, or visa versa). Bachelor in Paradise takes a bunch of recent Bachelor/Bachelorette alums (a lot of ladies from Juan Pablo’s season, some dudes from Andi’s season, there are Desiree and Sean alums as well) and puts them together in a house in “paradise” (Tulum, Mexico). Every week the show brings on either two new girls or two new dudes, so there’s always an unequal number of ladies and gentlemen (the ratio has so far stayed 6:8). The gender who is in the minority that week gets roses to give out, so if it’s six gentlemen’s turn to hand out roses, two ladies are going home that week. There are elements of Bachelor Pad, another Bach-alum spin-off, but there are no stupid Survivor-like challenges in Bach Paradise. It’s all about hooking up and (I guess) finding true love on this show.

Remember how fun gossip was in junior high and high school? I mean, stupid and immature and life-ruining, yes, but also SO MUCH FUN. Bachelor in Paradise is like if you got to watch all the best gossip from your teen years acted out right in front of you with commercial breaks. There’s like one couple (Marcus and Lacy) who are super in love and therefore super boring and everyone else is playing romantic musical chairs with each other, falling in and out of love, backstabbing and betraying each other while everyone else in the house gossips about all the relationships on the rocks.

And of course, everyone on the show is there to find true love (or at least everyone is SUPPOSED to be on the show to find true love, there’s always a floating accusation about SOMEONE not being on the show for “the right reasons”). And there really is something intensely interesting and ultimately super f–-ing sweet about people in a reality television fishbowl trying to figure out this whole love thing. What’s a perfect match, what’s an almost-but-just-not-quite match, how do you woo another, how do you handle a breakup, all that fascinating love stuff playing out in hour-and-a-half segments.

It’s the best show currently airing. I don’t care what shmancy stuff cable has going on this summer, it’s all about Bachelor in Paradise. Trust a girl, and give it a try, you’ll thank me. Scout’s honor.

(Images via ABC)

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