Don't Actually Admit You Came On 'The Bachelorette' To Be Famous, Dummy
There are many unspoken rules for being a contestant on The Bachelor/Bachelorette, but there's one so ingrained into the collective conscious that you probably already know it even if you've never seen a minute of the show before. It's that you're never supposed to admit that you went on the show to become famous or, as stated in Bachelor parlance, you must be "there for the right reasons." Of course, we know this to be bullshit because everyone in the history of time that ever signed up to get on The Bachelorette did so in the hopes of one day having enough of a following to shill Bluechew on their Instagram pages, but the point is you're not supposed to cop to that. It's all part of the song and dance, like smiling wordlessly at a dinner party even though the dog is farting shockwaves under the dining room table.
It's what makes week 3's episode of The Bachelorette so groundbreaking. Thomas, the real estate broker from Whocaresheisscrewedville, California, decided to eschew tradition and straight-up admitted to Katie and the rest that not only did he go on the show in hopes of finding a platform, but hoped to become the next Bachelor.
This has never been done before, and for good reason. It's because it might be the dumbest thing you could do on this show, and keep in mind, this franchise casts some stiff competition:
But Thomas's words take the cake and again, not because they were especially dumb on the surface (save for him coining the phrase "disingenuine" at 1:50.)
But it was super dumb given the context of this show. The slightest stink of "here for the wrong reasons" impropriety usually spells immediate doom for the contestant, so Thomas, who earlier in the night also admitted of his own volition that he was dating other women a week before taping, is now a 100% lock to get a limo seat with his name on it.
There's an argument to be made that this wasn't too big a flub. All he did was tell the truth. Surely, it could be said that, stuck in some Schrödinger's paradigm between boldness and stupidity, there's a version of this where Thomas is applauded for having the courage to say the quiet part out loud. But this isn't our reality. It is reality television. It'd be like if, in professional wrestling, Kenny Omega grabbed the mic after a win and yelled, "This is all scripted! I was supposed to win! Later, me and Chris Jericho are having a BFF spa day at the mall!"
There's another argument to be made that it shouldn't be this way, and that might be fair. It's a cynical perspective to take that just because someone goes on a reality dating show to find fame, that they can't also find love along the way. The two aren't mutually exclusive, and maybe in future seasons, the contestants will be able to own that without fear of retribution. But this is a show whose pageantry still demands an engagement in the end. We're a long way off from Influencers Date And Then Break Up, And Everyone Is Cool With It: The TV Show. Thomas just got caught being the dumbest contestant imaginable, and he knows it.
Other Takeaways from Week 3:
Greg is still running away with this, so while I don't expect Michael to get the final ring from Katie, he's getting a ring from somebody after this:
Top Image: ABC/Hulu