Category: The Bachelor

'The Bachelor': Chris Harrison warns fans not to believe show spoilers [Video]

For the last few weeks, we've been doing everything in our power to avoid finding out what happens at the end of this season of "The Bachelor." But let's face it: Spoilers are everywhere. On the covers of tabloid magazines, on fan websites -- even in the comment section of our own weekly show recaps!

But to those fans of the show who think they know who Brad Womack is or isn't going home with in a few weeks, host Chris Harrison has a message for you:

"Be careful what you're reading. Let's all just wait and see what happens," Harrison told us on the red carpet at Sunday's Academy Awards, where he had just wrapped up hosting duties for his gig with TV Guide.

When asked if the rampant spoilers bother him, Harrison said he'd accepted the fact that the show now exists in a day and age in which it's impossible to keep a secret.

"When was the last time you didn't know who was on 'Dancing with the Stars'? When was the last time you didn't know who the judges were for 'American Idol'? Or WikiLeaks stealing Pentagon secrets," he said. "There's no accountability with Twitter, with Facebook and all these blogs, it's like you can just say whatever. So it is what it is at this point, in this world."

As for what's going to go down in the fantasy suites on Monday's episode with the final three girls in South Africa, Harrison was pretty tight-lipped. Previews for the new installment seem to imply that Emily is reluctant to sleep with Brad. Isn't that a deal breaker on "The Bachelor"? we asked

"You'll have to see how it works out. Emily is a very different situation," he said. "One of those relationships where she has a daughter to think about, and she's very careful about how she handles that."

No matter who Brad ends up with at the end, Harrison assured us: The Bachelor is in love.

"We just taped the 'Women Tell All' yesterday ... and he is in love and is happy as can be. He is so happy that he came back and did this again."

-- Amy Kaufman


"The Bachelor" recap: A creepy job is the kiss of death for Shawntel

"The Bachelor" recap: Girls get wild in Anguilla

"The Bachelor" recap: Some women go a little batty

Complete "Bachelor" coverage on Show Tracker

'The Bachelor' recap: A creepy job is the kiss of death for Shawntel

1295631434_bachelor-shawntel-lh I mean, let's be honest: after Monday night's episode, there's no way Emily isn't going home with Brad at the end of this season of "The Bachelor."

And if I'm wrong, then I must be a horrible fan of this show, because the look in Brad's eye when he's around Emily is unmistakable. She's the only one he gets nervous around. She's the only one whose crap -- read: emotional issues -- he's willing to put up with. And she's managed to play hard to get while still keeping his interest -- something difficult to do in a competition that's all about declaring your undying love after mere weeks.

That's not to say the producers of this show haven't been able to fool me before. Case in point: I was totally convinced that Emily's daughter, Ricki, was going to hate Brad, and that the awkward interaction might kill the pair's fledgling relationship. Oh, and it certainly was unbearably uncomfortable at the beginning. Like any young girl forced to be on reality television, Ricki was painfully shy at first, hiding behind Emily and refusing to make eye contact or speak with Brad. It was only when she opened Brad's present, a butterfly-shaped kite, and watched it take off into the air that she finally loosened up.

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'The Bachelor' recap: Girls get wild in Anguilla

122029_D_0499_pre Ding dong, the witch is dead!

I was hoping it would come eventually: the long-awaited moment when Brad finally sent Michelle packing. But I was never completely positive that he'd be able to see through her attractive exterior and recognize her penchant for crazy. After all, plenty of men in past seasons of "The Bachelor" have opted for sexual chemistry over emotional connection. Jake and Vienna, anyone? And we all remember how well that worked out.

But for whatever glorious reason, this was finally the week that Brad decided he was fed up with Michelle, even though while in Anguilla she seemed to actually taper down her psychotic antics. During the three-on-one date, which she shared with Ashley and Chantal, she was certainly still her aggressive self -- posing for her Sports Illustrated shot scantily clad on top of Brad, while the other girls rolled around in the sand solo and topless.

Immediately after he agreed to be in Michelle's photo with her, Brad clearly felt remorseful, seeing how upset the other two girls looked as they watched from the sidelines.

"I mean, I thought I knew Michelle," he told the camera after the photo shoot. "She's always been aggressive and intense, but today, I should not have allowed the kissing scene to happen."

Thanks, Captain Obvious. You still let your physical attraction to Michelle get in the way of any modicum of respect you claimed to have for the other women. 

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'The Bachelor' recap: Some women go a little batty

122028_D_1108_pre Hola.

It's one little word that will continue to haunt me for the rest of the week, after Michelle decided to sneak into Brad's room off-hours, suddenly emerging in his dark doorway and creepily uttering the greeting.
It always baffles me when contestants on the show decide to make up their own rules, choosing to visit the Bachelor/Bachelorette whenever they so choose. (Remember Justin the wrestler on Ali's season, awkwardly hobbling over to her house on his crutches?)

Well, scratch that -- I don't find the impulse confusing, because it's a smart move to get in some extra time -- but I'm more bothered by the fact that the producers let contestants get away with an extra visit. Shouldn't there be some sort of punishment? Otherwise, who's to stop all of the players from creating impromptu dates on a whim?

In Michelle's case, I initially thought the sneakiness had backfired. Brad didn't appear happy to see her whatsoever -- he just looked shocked, and said he was worried the secret visit would get him in trouble. Michelle somehow didn't pick up Brad's discomfort and proceeded to instruct him on which girls he should eliminate yet. I see what's she's trying to do here: it's that I'm-so-beautiful-I-can-control-you thing really sexy women are often able to pull off. Even though she's actually insecure and mildly psychotic, Michelle says the crazy things she's feeling and then tries to pass them off as a joke by giggling coyly. 

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Tweeters' Digest: The week in TV tweets

In between the self-promotion (watch my show!), the responses to fans (thanks for watching my show!) and the revelations of personal minutiae (I'm going to the gym before I watch my show!), famous people take to Twitter to comment on the news of the world.

With Rob Lowe and Anderson Cooper on the revolution in Egypt, Donald Glover and Adrian Grenier anticipating the SuperBowl and Damon Lindelof still defending the final episode of "Lost," here are some highlights of the week — after the jump — as captured in tweets from actors, show runners, TV anchors and reality stars.

— Joy Press

Photo: Rob Lowe. Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times.

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'The Bachelor' recap: Emily races to the front of the pack

122170_0556_preAh, "Bachelor" Monday. How I've missed you. Sorry to have skipped out on last week's episode, guys, but I was up reporting at the Sundance Film Festival, where the stoic Brad Womack and his pile of red roses were sadly unavailable for my viewing pleasure.

Getting back into the show on Monday, I was glad to see that Brad is finally getting down to business — giving some deserving girls their long-awaited shot at a one-on-one date, and calling some other women out on their childish antics.

It was nice to see him choose Shawntel to take on the first solo date: She seems like a down-to-earth girl, and I kind of like that she's an embalmer — even though it's a gig I could never stomach. It gives her a bit of spunk, and it was nice that even the creepy, crawly details of her day-to-day responsibilities didn't scare Brad away. She also was clearly out of place going on a $5,000 shopping spree in some of Vegas' most high-end stores. She got to go to Fendi, and of all of the pricey handbags in the room, she chooses a hideously patterned patchwork purse? Her dress selection wasn't as bad — and it was endearing that despite all of her new accouterments, she walked out to the date with her hair thrown up into a messy bun rather than some elaborate up-do. 

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How do producers cast reality shows when everyone wants to be the next Snooki?

Kass Reality TV is populated by an ever-increasing number of fame-seekers and would-be actors,  forcing casting agents to work much harder to find "real" people.

"Everyone acts as if there's a camera watching," says Sally Ann Salsano of 495 Productions ("Jersey Shore").  "To find someone who is being truly genuine is like finding a needle in a haystack."

Finding the right cast for shows like "The Bachelor," "Survivor" and "America's Next Top Model" used to be a matter of getting word out and watching the audition tapes that arrived in response. But increasingly, networks are relying on reality recruiters to search untapped corners of the country (and the mall) in search of authentic folks.

"I always feel like Target is a gold mine," says "America's Next Top Model" casting director Michelle Mock-Falcon.

Read more in this feature about the art of reality TV casting.

-- Joy Press

Photo: Casting agent Robyn Kass. Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times


'The Bachelor' recap: Choppers, wet blankets and a black eye

Michelle Looks like Mr. Brad Womack is soon to overdose on his own medicine.

Monday night’s episode of “The Bachelor” showed Brad –- earnestly or not –- continuing to try and do everything for all the women remaining. In return, just as Brad said he did during his first go-around here, many began to put walls up.

Why? It’s the age-old “Bachelor/Bachelorette” disease in which the people vying for the catch’s attention forget what they signed up for, and wonder how everyone else can be feeling the same feelings they have for the same man. Even though they’re playing “The Bachelor.”

Yes, I said “playing.” We all know this is pretty much a merry-go-round from which one person kicks people off every week until he's satisfied (we hope) with who’s left. Now, unlike the majority of America, I was happy to see Brad not pick anyone when he did all this before. And I was glad to hear my fellow Texan say that he’d do the same thing this time if he feels the same way at the end. It’s “The Bachelor,” not “Married by America.”

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Madison Garton, model who walked off 'The Bachelor,' is shocked to discover show involves 'strategizing'


ABC's over-the-top mating show, "The Bachelor," is now in its 15th cycle, and yet the producers still seem capable of finding attractive young women who don't quite get the concept, or can at least pretend they don't. 

Take, for example, Madison Garton, a 25-year-old actress and model who has now entered the reality-TV hall of fame (hey, it's a big hall) by walking off the show near the end of Monday's third episode. Brad Womack, the titular bachelor who comes off less as a real person than as the hero's somewhat slow-on-the-uptake buddy in an action movie, was in the middle of a rose ceremony meant to decide who was leaving the show when Madison suddenly strode off the set without a word.


The official story was that Garton was so moved by hearing the tragic story of Emily, a rival for Womack's hard-to-parse affections, that she just couldn't take the chance of killing what might blossom into true love.

But the real story seems to be that Garton discovered the show is ... a bit of a sham!

No. Way.

"It blows my mind," Garton told reporters (and yes, there were a lot of us on the phone call) Thursday morning. "It seems like some girls are really in it to win it. Winning 'The Bachelor,' you know. ... Girls are sort of strategizing and all of that. When you pull yourself back from it, you're like, 'Hey, what am I doing? I don't even know this guy!'"

Um, Madison? Have you seen "The Bachelor" before?

The plain truth is that things just weren't clicking between her and Womack, a guy who might be hard to click with unless you're also a character from a romance novel. "It just felt wrong to me," Garton explained. "I left when I felt I needed to."

Granted, Garton herself might not be the most reliable judge of what feels right. She introduced herself to Womack wearing fake vampire teeth and is now known on the Internet as "Fang Girl."

"I've always had, yeah, the whole vampire thing, sort of into the darker side of things," she explained.  "Loved the mystery and sexiness of the whole idea."

Actually, there's more mystery to Garton than first thought. According to, her real name is Madison McKinley and she's an actress who's appeared on "30 Rock" and elsewhere. So, even more so than usual on "The Bachelor," there's no telling where reality ends and real life begins.

Anyway, fangs for the memories, Madison!

What did you think of Garton and her walk-off?

-- Scott Collins

Photo: Madison Garton gives Brad Womack a goodbye hug on "The Bachelor." Credit: Rick Rowell / ABC



'The Bachelor' recap: Brad needs professional help

122012_9826_preOK, so um, since when does "The Bachelor" get to have a therapist?

Listen, Brad has made it very clear that he's "troubled."

He's a manly man who has repeatedly copped to the unthinkable: submitting to therapy sessions for the three long years after his first unsuccessful attempt at love on the show. 

But now he's back in the saddle, and has been saying he's a changed man. And then on Monday's episode, suddenly, his "L.A. therapist" pops up? Does that seem wildly unfair to anyone else? I'm sure that being on this show is a total mind trip for anyone who is at the center of it, trying to grapple with new feelings for multiple people. And all the past "Bachelor's" got were those lame heart-to-hearts with host Chris Harrison in a room lined with framed headshots of their potential soul mates? 

I guess it's not that much of an advantage, because the advice Brad's getting from his new trusted advisor is pretty weak.

"Make this women feel comfortable, and in turn, they'll show me who they are," a mantra Brad kept repeating to himself. A novel thought. Truly. Wise words. 

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'The Bachelor' recap: Is Brad in this for the right reasons?

Brad-womack When I first heard a few months ago that Brad Womack would be reprising the role of the dashing suitor on "The Bachelor," I was skeptical. Here's a guy who led two beautiful women on, broke their hearts in front of millions of viewers, and then became a recluse in his hometown in Texas after apparently realizing his true color. His second shot at love, I imagined, would seem contrived -- a faux effort more focused on proving something that finding something.

Two episodes in, Brad still doesn't have me sold. To be fair, it's typically hard, I think, to jump on board with new "Bachelor" or "Bachelorette" candidates early on in the season. (I remember how sunny and grating I found Ali at first, and when she made a cameo on Monday's episode with Roberto, I swooned.)

But there's just something about Brad -- like there was with the last "Bachelor," Jake -- that doesn't ring true. He's overly earnest. He constantly says "please," as if he's trying to be deferential. And he's so intent on finding the one that I think he's often jumping to conclusions about the girls he's dating.

That was evident on his date with Ashley H. Sure, on "The Bachelor" you have less than six weeks to get to know your potential spouse, so you have to move fast. But when Brad's first date opened up about how her father had abandoned her family, Brad seemed to instantly light up. "We both have daddy issues! We must be the same!" Her admission made Brad feel so comfortable around her that he uttered this cringe-worthy line: "Ash? Can I call you Ash?" No. Please do not.

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'The Bachelor' recap: Meet Michelle, Madison and the manscaper


Handsome Brad Womack is the first return bachelor ever. The show's first half-hour is spent reviewing his errant "Bachelor" past, in which he failed to propose to either of the two final women. “I watched the finale –- and I feel like a jerk,” he tells host Chris Harrison. As video rolls of Handsome Brad working out, shirtless, we hear a voiceover of his self-recriminations. “I was scared to commit. ... I know what I’m getting into –- it’s going to be tough.”

Cut to: mini-profiles of some of the ladies. We meet Shawntel, a funeral director from Chico. A dentist, a car saleswoman, and a “manscaper” (hair remover). Meghan says: “Finding a boyfriend is like shopping for a great pair of shoes. ... Meeting the man of my dreams would be the perfect accessory. For sure.” Wait, what? But she's rapidly out-weirded by Madison, a model whose perfect accessory seems to be the pair of vampire fangs attached to her upper canines. Temp or perm? Before there’s time to puzzle that out, we meet Emily, a picture-perfect blond with a terribly sad backstory: From her teen years, she loved a racecar driver; he died tragically six years ago –- just before she found out she was pregnant with their daughter. Too much baggage or the perfect heartstring pull?

Then, of course, someone has to pull out the “I’m not here to make friends” line.

Brad sits on the couch and tells host Chris about his dad issues, how he’s changed, how empty he had felt the first time around when he said no to his two finalist ladies Jinny and DeAnna ... who then get trucked out and parked right there, face to face. “Now I feel like even more of an -– idiot,” says Handsome Brad. “As a man, it’s really tough to admit that I wasn’t capable of being who you guys needed. I failed miserably, you know? And I’m so profoundly sorry.”

It’s penance and redemption, all in the first episode! Will it work? Can he be forgiven for his sin of not going through with it last time and also be believed that he's going to go through with it in this round?

His first lady hopeful, Chantal O., slaps him across the face, saying it’s “from every woman in America.” “I like you better already!” says Handsome Brad. Kimberly in purple sequins teeters to him. Allie, in a long green gown, goes in for a hug, and then another hug. Ashley with a Southern belle accent grabs a handful of Handsome Brad butt. Meghan wears look-at-me pink platforms. Marissa tells him that her life revolves around sports. Lindsay is from Dallas. Petite Ashley H. chatters a lot. Stacked Raichel in blue sequins, the professional man waxer, marks herself as a crazy girl by announcing, “You happen to be the perfect guy for me,” before Handsome Brad has a chance to say anything.

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