This put up reveals “plot” factors of episode 10 of The Bachelor season 21.
According to the fabricated lexicon of The Bachelor, the present’s characters don’t take part in a mere televised courting competitors. They have been introduced collectively, as a substitute, on an emotional journey that the present refers to, infallibly, as “a journey.”
The Bachelor’s insistence on its own vague Campbelliness is ironic for a number of causes. The largest is that, whereas the present does supply a type of momentum—issues proceed week after week, Rose Ceremony after Rose Ceremony, with romantic tensions inevitably mounting—its individuals, for the most half, do little or no in the method of their very own growth. There are characters, sure, however only a few arcs. The Bachelor or Bachelorette in query would possibly be taught some issues as the season proceeds, certain; for the most half, although, the contestants are who they’re, they usually keep who they’re. The tensions come not as these contestants develop and alter, however as a substitute as their totally different aspects are systematically revealed to the Bachelor(ette). Different sides of their personalities are glimpsed; persons are stored round or kicked to the curb primarily based on the aspects of themselves that manifest as the Journey continues apace. The Bachelor, principally, is a present that gives loads of motion, however little or no evolution.
Which made Monday’s episode particularly hanging. First, as a result of, at the Rose Ceremony at the episode’s outset, Nick “said goodbye” (one other time period of Bachelor artwork) to Corinne Olympios, the season’s appointed villain. Corinne, who’s dramatic and zany and materialistic and Good TV in human kind, had lengthy been a front-runner each regardless of and due to her antics (as SB Nation summed it up earlier this month, “Oh God, Corinne’s gonna win this whole dang thing, isn’t she?”). Her ouster on Monday, proper earlier than the Fantasy Suite dates, was a shock—to viewers of the present together with, however undoubtedly not restricted to, Corinne herself.
What was doubly hanging about Corinne’s departure, although, was that she used the present’s elaborate farewell ritual to contradict The Bachelor’s dynamic stasis: While being damaged up with by Nick and, by extension, Bachelor Nation, Corinne demonstrated that, towards all odds, she had grown. As an individual! Sort of! (I’d use one other Bachelorism right here, however in fact, for this sort of factor, there’s none.)
The Bachelor’s conventional departure scene—Woman, Weeping Alone in a Limo—sometimes includes the said-goodbye-to contestant crying, wiping away mascara-tears, and discussing how a lot she desires—actually, how prepared she is—to “find love.” Not so Corinne. The lady who had spend the season defying the present’s long-established norms had yet another trick up her faux-fur-covered sleeve. Corinne, Weeping Alone in a Limo, instructed the present’s invisible cameras not about how unhappy she was, however as a substitute about … how modified she was. The season’s villain and cipher and punchline and living, breathing conspiracy theory used her last moments inside the Bachelor highlight to speak about what she had taken away from her expertise on the present. She used them to discuss not about The Journey, however about her personal.
It went like this: Nick didn’t name Corinne’s title at the New York City-based Rose Ceremony. He walked her out to the limo. “I’m sorry,” she instructed him, as they embraced. “I’m sorry if I ever did anything to make you upset.”
He replied: “You never did! Listen, you never did anything wrong. Ever. You have nothing to regret. You have nothing to second guess. Look at me—nothing. Not a thing. You need to know that. Okay?”
Corinne stepped into the limo. The conventional departure ritual started. She wept, as plaintive piano notes surrounded her. “Saying goodbye to Nick,” she instructed the digital camera, “is like, I feel like my heart is like, literally like—it’s never going to be repaired. I just want to feel loved—the way it’s supposed to be, like the normal way.”
It was all standard-issue Bachelor stuff, proper down to the invocation of “the normal way” … till issues—as they so usually will when Corinne is concerned—took a flip. “I’m trying to, you know, say things that men think are appropriate,” she mentioned, as her tears gave method to a gradual smile. “And you know what? I’m done. Done trying to show my men how much I worship them and I love them and I care for them and I support them. I need that! So if someone feels that way about me? They can come and tell me. And they can bring a ring to go along with it.”
It was … feminist? Sort of? It was additionally inflected with Corinne’s attribute self-absorption and materialism, sure—and the possible results of some liberal enhancing, with that fast shift from weeping to grinning—however nonetheless. Corinne, with this, was rejecting the stuff of all these Cosmo tales providing recommendation on How to Please Your Man—and the stuff, for that matter, of a tradition that tends to assume that girls, and girls alone, ought to do the work of constructing certain that males really feel supported, and cherished, and, certainly, “worshipped.” Corinne had spend her season of The Bachelor myopically—even maniacally—targeted on Nick. She had been, in Bachelorese, There for Nick and There for the Right Reasons and Not There to Make Friends. And in the finish, if the goal is to be the lady earlier than whom Nick “gets down on one knee,” it had all failed.
Corinne took all that after which did one thing that’s uncommon and virtually rebellious inside The Bachelor’s gauzy confines: She realized a lesson. She took the present’s truisms about coupledom and remodeled them into different clichés: Corinne will, she recommended, from right here on out, Focus on Herself and Do It for Herself. Corinne will do Corinne. She will Make Corinne Great Again. “I’m going to be me,” Corinne instructed the present’s invisible digital camera, as its invisible piano performed her off. “And whatever happens, happens. But I will never kiss up to a man again in my entire life.”