For the past eleven weeks, tabloids, gossip columns, and celebrity news channels have dedicated their Tuesdays to covering everything related to The Bachelor–more specifically, the TV villain Courtney. In the sixth grade (at a way-too-young age and unbeknownst to my parents), I was captivated by the drama-fest and watched the show religiously. Locked away in my bedroom, pretending to be mastering my algebra homework, I tuned in as Alex handed out roses and girls cried to the camera.
Despite my dad’s accurate accusations that the show is frivolous and just plain stupid, I continued to watch season after season (and continued to argue that it was enriching). Once the sixteenth season premiered, I followed the storyline of Ben—or Francine, whichever you prefer—until I talked to an insider.
My sister’s roommate’s friend knows Courtney (got that?) and had the scoop after a few episodes. At the height of Courtney’s downfall, she told me that Courtney was devastated and was having trouble coping with the bad publicity. I fully believe that what goes around comes around, but at the same time, no one wants to be portrayed in such an unflattering way, whether it’s true or not. While producers can’t fake “reality,” they can exaggerate the truth; it’s to be expected in a show that thrives off of controversy.
Besides knowing who Ben proposed to early on, it made me take a step back and see the big picture. At a young age, I was taught to treat others the way that I want to be treated. Over the years, I’ve certainly dealt with situations that have challenged my ability to do so, but I can appreciate the lessons that I’ve learned. Without a doubt, The Bachelor is in no way intended to be a source of moral questioning, even though it had such an effect on me.
Combined with her own actions and the editing of producers, Courtney has become a target for hatred. I don’t condone her behavior, even if she is now experiencing regret, but should she really be a topic of controversy? Poking fun at her commentary is one thing; making a Facebook hate-site is another.
I’d love to hear your thoughts—whether you watched the show or not.