The Bachelor

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    Since The Bachelor debuted in 2002 on ABC, the relationship reality show hosted by Chris Harrisonhas grown into a huge pop cultural phenomenon. The show is now responsible for tons of watch parties, relentless watercooler talk, and a surprising number spin-offs. For over 15 years, feminists far and wide have sneered at and ignored this show. But last year, BUST’s digital editor Lydia Wang and BUST digital contributor Emma Daveystarted talking about it at BUST HQ so much that BUST’s Poptarts Podcast co-host Emily Rems started tuning in. In this episode, Lydia and Emma explain why even feminists are watching, and Emily and Callie weigh the pros and cons of taking up residence in Bachelor Nation.

    About:  BUST's Poptarts is a twice-monthly podcast hosted by magazine editors Emily Rems and Callie Watts that celebrates women in pop culture. The first half of each episode is devoted to a hot topic in entertainment, and in the second half, a segment called "Whatcha Watchin'?," Callie and Emily dig into all the shows, movies, books, music, videos, and podcasts they've enjoyed since the last episode, and either praise or pan each experience

    This podcast was produced for BUST by Cait Moldenhauer and Jessy Caron at More Banana Productions and was recorded by Logan del Fuego. Patreon producer Teresa Wiltshire.

    Hey! Did you know that the Poptarts podcast has a swell new Patreon program with fab thank-you gifts for members? Well it does! Give it a look-see at !

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    After COVID, countless scandals and many questionable decisions, many fans think The Bachelor franchise has finally run its course. According to his Instagram, Chris Harrison officially stepped down from his role as host on Tuesday after defending the racist actions of a contestant during an interview in March with Rachel Lindsay, the first Black Bachelorette. Rachael Kirkconnell, the contestant Harrison defended, was facing backlash for the multiple Instagram posts that resurfaced including one from an Old South Antebellum party she attended at a plantation while in college.

    In the March interview, Harrison stated, “Well, Rachel, is it a good look in 2018? Or is it not a good look in 2021? Because there’s a big difference.” This comment outraged fans because the actions of the contestant were just as wrong in 2018 as they are in 2021. 

    Since the interview, Harrison has not attended any of the ceremonies or finales due to backlash, so his decision to step down is not of much shock to anyone. 

    Unfortunately, this is not the first time that the franchise has been hit with allegations of seriously shocking behavior. In 2017, a sexual misconduct investigation was launched when a hookup occurred between Corinne Olympios and DeMario Jackson, during which Olympios was too intoxicated to give consent. The chilling part about this is that producers and cameramen watched and filmed as the incident occurred, with no one stepping in to help Olympios.  In 2019, Bachelor creator Mike Fleiss was accused of beating his pregnant wife after she refused to get an abortion. The actions of those behind and in front of the cameras over the years have been very disturbing. 

    Not only have there been countless horrifying scandals, but the portrayal of gender stereotypes on the show is seriously tired, and problematic. The show pits women against each other for the sake of entertainment, and that is simply not okay. The entire premise of the show is outdated, and while they have poorly attempted to keep up with the times—casting more people of color and some people with different sexual preferences—it's both too late and not enough. Maybe it's time for The Bachelor to be put to bed.

    Top Photo: Screenshot from YouTube

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