The Bachelor (U.S. TV series)

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The Bachelor
The Bachelor usa logo.png
Genre Dating game show
Created by Mike Fleiss
Presented by Chris Harrison
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 22
No. of episodes 225
Executive producer(s) Mike Fleiss
Lisa Levenson
Running time 60 minutes (2002–06)
90 minutes (2006–08)
120 minutes (2009–)
Production company(s) Next Entertainment
Warner Bros. Television (2002–06)
Warner Horizon Television (2006–)
Telepictures Productions
Distributor Warner Bros. Television Distribution
Original network ABC
Picture format 480i (SDTV) (2002–07)
720p (HDTV) (2007–present)
Original release March 25, 2002 (2002-03-25) – present
Related shows The Bachelorette
Bachelor Pad
Bachelor in Paradise
Bachelor in Paradise: After Paradise
Bachelor Live
The Bachelor Winter Games
External links

The Bachelor is an American dating and relationship reality television series that debuted on March 25, 2002, on ABC. The show is hosted by Chris Harrison. The show's success has resulted in several spin-offs including The Bachelorette, Bachelor Pad, Bachelor in Paradise, and Bachelor in Paradise: After Paradise.


It is created and produced by Mike Fleiss and directed by Ken Fuchs. The After The Final Rose and other reunion specials are produced at Victory Studios in Glendale, CA.[1]


The series revolves around a single bachelor (deemed eligible) who starts with a pool of romantic interests (typically 25) from whom the bachelor is expected to select a wife. During the course of the season, the bachelor eliminates candidates (see The elimination process), with the bachelor typically proposing marriage to his final selection. The participants travel to romantic and exotic locations for their adventures, and the conflicts in the series, both internal and external, stem from the elimination-style format of the show.

The above description is a general guideline. In practice, the show does not always follow its designed structure, and those variations are often a source of drama and conflict.

  • A candidate who was eliminated returns to the show to plead her case to the bachelor.
  • A bachelor distributes more roses or fewer roses than planned.
  • A bachelor eliminates a woman outside of the normal elimination process. For example, the bachelor may eliminate both women in a two-on-one date.
  • The bachelor chooses to pursue a relationship with his final selection rather than propose marriage.

The two most notable cases where the bachelor violated the premise of the show are Brad Womack, who selected neither of his final two women, and Jason Mesnick, who in the After the Final Rose episode broke off his engagement and several months later proposed (offscreen) to the first runner-up. (The two are now married.)


For the first two weeks of filming the contestants stay in "Villa De La Vina," a 7,590-square-foot (705 m2), six-bedroom, nine-bath home in Agoura Hills, California. The custom home, built in 2005, is located on 10 acres at 2351 Kanan Road. As of October 10, 2008, the home was listed for sale at a price of US$8.75 million.[2] The final third of the episodes within a season are filmed traveling the world. Episodes have been filmed throughout the United States, Canada, England, New Zealand, Vietnam, Thailand, and Korea to name just a few. The Agoura Hills, California mansion has not been used on several occasions, including during season 7- where filming took place in New York City, home of Charlie O'Connell, who had appeared in Sliders with his brother Jerry O'Connell; Paris, France for season 8; and Rome, Italy- where Lorenzo Borghese, who is half Italian, lived- for season 9.

The elimination process[edit]

On each Bachelor episode, the bachelor interacts with the women and presents a rose to each woman he wishes to remain on the show. Those who do not receive a rose are eliminated. Eliminations are based upon the bachelor's personal feelings about each contestant, guided primarily by the impression made by each woman during dates or other events of the week. Most roses are presented at a rose ceremony at the end of each episode, but roses can also be bestowed on dates. Typical activities include

  • A group date, in which the bachelor and a group of women participate in an activity. Sometimes the activity takes the form of a competition, the winner or winners spending more time with the bachelor. The bachelor typically presents a rose to the woman who makes the best impression during the group date.
  • A one-on-one date, in which the bachelor and one woman go on a date. Except in the late stages of the season, there is a rose at stake: At the end of the date, the bachelor must decide whether to present the woman a rose. If the woman does not receive a rose, she is eliminated immediately.
  • A two-on-one date, in which the bachelor and two women go on a date. At the end of the date, the bachelor must decide which woman receives a rose. The woman who does not receive a rose is eliminated immediately.

If a rose is at stake on a date, the participating women pack their suitcases in case they fail to receive a rose. The other women learn that a woman has been eliminated when that woman's suitcase is taken away by a crew member.

  • Except in the late stages of the season, the episode concludes with a cocktail party, to which the bachelor and all women not yet eliminated are invited. At the first cocktail party of the season, the bachelor presents a "first impression rose"; roses are typically not presented at any other cocktail parties.
  • Every episode concludes with a rose ceremony which has its own conventions.
    • The women who have not been eliminated stand in rows at one end of the room, and the bachelor faces them. The bachelor has a tray with roses.
    • The bachelor takes a rose and calls a woman by name. The woman steps forward, and the bachelor asks, "Will you accept this rose?" The woman accepts, takes the rose, and returns to her original position.
    • When there is one rose remaining, host Chris Harrison says, "Ladies, this is the final rose tonight," then tells the bachelor, "When you're ready."
    • After all roses are distributed, host Chris Harrison tells the women who did not receive a rose to "take a moment and say your good-byes."

The final episodes of each season traditionally follow this pattern:

  • The bachelor visits the home towns and families of each of the four remaining women. At the rose ceremony, one woman is eliminated, leaving three.
  • The bachelor and the three remaining women travel to an exotic location for a series of one-on-one dates. At the conclusion of each date, the bachelor offers the woman the keys to the fantasy suite which allows the two to spend the night together without cameras present. At the rose ceremony, one woman is eliminated, leaving two.
  • In a "The Women Tell All" episode, the women who had been eliminated from the show participate in a talk show where they discuss their thoughts and experiences.
  • The two remaining women separately meet with the bachelor's family. At the end of the episode, the bachelor proposes to one of the women by presenting the "final rose".
  • In an "After the Final Rose" episode which immediately follows, the bachelor, the finalist, and the runner-up participate in a talk show. The identity of the next season's bachelor or bachelorette is often announced at the end of the episode.

A woman may withdraw from the competition at any time if she finds herself no longer interested in the bachelor. On rare occasions, a woman is removed from the show for breaking one of the rules.

The bachelor has wide discretion in choosing how many and when to present the roses. For example, Sean Lowe presented several roses at his initial cocktail party.

It is common to accuse a contestant of not being on the show "for the right reasons", meaning that her aim is not to establish a relationship with the bachelor, but rather to garner publicity for her own career, induce jealousy in an ex-boyfriend, become selected as the next Bachelorette, or simply to get a free trip to exotic locations.


# Original run Bachelor Number of contestants Winner Runner(s)-up Proposal Still together Relationship notes
1 March 25–April 25, 2002 Alex Michel 25 Amanda Marsh Trista Rehn No No Michel did not propose to Marsh, but instead they entered into a relationship. Marsh and Michel broke up after several months. Marsh is now married to her childhood friend, Jay Caldwell, and they have a daughter named Chloe.[3][4]
2 September 25–November 20, 2002 Aaron Buerge Helene Eksterowicz Brooke Smith Yes No Buerge and Eksterowicz broke up after several weeks.[5] Buerge became engaged to Angye McIntosh and married in 2009.[6] They have a daughter named Aven.[7] In 2013, Eksterowicz married senior technology consultant Andrew Goodman and they have one child together.[8][9][10]
3 March 24–May 21, 2003 Andrew Firestone Jen Schefft Kirsten Buschbacher Yes No Schefft and Firestone broke up after several months but remained friends.[11] He is now married to actress Ivana Bozilović and they have three children together: sons Adam and Shane and daughter Anja.[12][13][14][15]
4 September 24–November 20, 2003 Bob Guiney Estella Gardinier Kelly Jo Kuharski No No Guiney did not propose to Gardinier but she accepted a promise ring indicating that they would still date. They broke up shortly after the show aired.[16] Guiney later married soap opera star Rebecca Budig, but they split after five years of marriage.[17] Guiney has been married to Jessica Canyon since November 2016.[18]
5 April 7–May 26, 2004 Canada Jesse Palmer Jessica Bowlin Tara Huckeby[19] No No Palmer did not propose to Bowlin. They continued to date but broke up several weeks later.[20] Bowlin is now married to Omar Rawi and they have two children together.[10]
6 September 22–November 24, 2004 Byron Velvick 27 Cuba Mary Delgado Tanya Michel Yes No Velvick and Jay Overbye started as two candidate bachelors. The women competing had to vote on which man they would like to be the bachelor. Velvick ended up winning the vote. Velvick and Delgado split after five years.[21] Velvick is now married to Belinda Juarez, while Delgado is now married to James Kordomenos.[10]
7 March 28–May 16, 2005 Charlie O'Connell 25 Sarah Brice Krisily Kennedy No No O'Connell chose Brice to be the winner but did not propose to her and instead began a relationship. They broke up in September 2007,[22] but got back together in 2008.[23] However, they called it quits again in 2010.[24] Brice is now married to Brandt Calver and they have three children together.[10][25]
8 January 9–February 27, 2006 Travis Lane Stork Sarah Stone Moana Dixon No No Stork did not propose to Stone. Instead, they began a relationship. They broke up shortly after the show aired.[26] Stork is now featured on The Doctors and was married to pediatrician Charlotte Brown, but they divorced after three years of marriage.[27][28] Stone is now married to Brock Smith and they have three daughters together.[10][29]
9 October 2–November 27, 2006 Italy Lorenzo Borghese 27 Jennifer Wilson Sadie Murray No No Borghese did not propose to Wilson. They entered into a relationship, and broke up in January 2007. He immediately dated the runner-up, Sadie Murray, and broke up in March of that same year.[30][31] Wilson is now married to Lee Gerschultz.[10]
10 April 2–May 22, 2007 Andrew Baldwin 25 Tessa Horst Bevin Nicole Powers Yes No Horst and Baldwin called off their engagement one month after the finale,[32] but continued their relationship. They broke off the relationship in September 2007. Horst is now married to Tom Pickard and they have a son together.[10]
11 September 24–November 20, 2007 Brad Womack None DeAnna Pappas &
Jenni Croft
No No Womack chose Croft and Pappas as the two finalists, but they were both rejected in the season's finale.[33]
12 March 17–May 12, 2008 United Kingdom Matt Grant Shayne Lamas Chelsea Wanstrath Yes No Grant and Lamas broke up in July 2008 as they felt their lives were going in different directions, but stated they would remain close friends.[34] Lamas is now married to Internet personality Nik Richie and they have two children together, a boy and a girl. Grant is now married to Rebecca Moring.[10][35]
13 January 5–March 2, 2009 Jason Mesnick Melissa Rycroft Molly Malaney Yes No[a] On the season's finale, Mesnick had called off the engagement with Rycroft, and resumed a relationship with runner-up Malaney. Rycroft is now married to Tye Strickland, and they have three children together, daughter Ava and sons Beckett and Cayson.[36][37][38] Mesnick would later propose to Malaney in New Zealand, which she accepted and were married on February 27, 2010, in California.[39] Mesnick and Malaney's wedding aired on national television on March 8, 2010.[40] The couple welcomed their first child, Riley, in March 2013.[41]
14 January 4–March 1, 2010 Jake Pavelka Vienna Girardi Tenley Molzahn Yes No Pavelka and Girardi ended their relationship in June 2010.[42] They later appeared in the second season of Bachelor Pad.[43]
15 January 3–March 14, 2011 Brad Womack[44] 30 Emily Maynard Chantal O'Brien Yes No Womack and Maynard broke up while their season was airing, but got back together after the show's finale. However, they called it quits for good in May 2011 but remained friends.[45]
16 January 2–March 12, 2012 Ben Flajnik[46] 26 Courtney Robertson Lindzi Cox Yes No Flajnik and Robertson originally broke up in February 2012 while their season was airing. However, they were later reconciled and got engaged for the second time, but broke up again in October 2012 for good.[47]
17 January 7–March 11, 2013[48] Sean Lowe[49] Catherine Giudici Lindsay Yenter Yes Yes Lowe and Giudici married on January 26, 2014.[50] They welcomed their first child, Samuel, on July 2, 2016.[51] They are expecting their second child in 2018.[52]
18 January 6–March 10, 2014 Venezuela Juan Pablo Galavis[53] 27 Nikki Ferrell Clare Crawley No No Galavis did not propose to Ferrell, but instead they decided to continue their relationship. They later appeared on Couples Therapy. In October 2014, they decided to end their relationship after months of fighting.[54] Ferrell married longtime friend Tyler Vanloo on October 8, 2016.[55] Galavis married former Miss Earth Venezuela Osmariel Villalobos in August 2017.[56]
19 January 5–March 9, 2015 Chris Soules[57] 30 Whitney Bischoff Becca Tilley Yes No Though the season ended with Soules proposing to Bischoff, the couple announced that they had called off the engagement on May 28, 2015.[58] Bischoff is now married to fellow Chicagoan Ricky Angel.[59]
20 January 4–March 14, 2016[60] Ben Higgins[61] 28 Lauren Bushnell Joelle "JoJo" Fletcher Yes No Higgins and Bushnell had their own reality show Ben and Lauren: Happily Ever After?. They also hosted a Disney wedding show special. The two announced their breakup on May 15, 2017.[62]
21 January 2–March 13, 2017[63] Nick Viall[64] 30 Canada Vanessa Grimaldi Raven Gates Yes No Viall and Grimaldi announced their breakup on August 25, 2017.[65]
22 January 1, 2018 Arie Luyendyk Jr.[66] 29 To be announced
  1. ^ Mesnick and Rycroft were no longer together after the show. He married the runner-up, Molly Malaney, and they are still together.


The show's success has led producer Mike Fleiss to create multiple spin-offs, including The Bachelorette, in which the format is gender-reversed. The bachelorettes are eliminated contestants from The Bachelor. Season 11 of The Bachelorette had two bachelorettes (but only for the first episode).

On August 9, 2010, Bachelor Pad premiered, giving previous contestants of both The Bachelor and The Bachelorette the opportunity to compete in dating-themed eliminations for $250,000.

On August 4, 2014, Bachelor in Paradise premiered, giving previous contestants of both The Bachelor and The Bachelorette the opportunity to compete for another chance in love in dating-themed eliminations. The series went on to have a spin-off of its own, Bachelor in Paradise: After Paradise, which also serves as a spin-off to The Bachelor and it premiered on August 3, 2015.[67]

The weddings of Trista Rehn (the 1st Bachelorette), Jason Mesnick (13th Bachelor), Ashley Hebert (the 7th Bachelorette), and Sean Lowe (the 17th Bachelor) were broadcast as television specials. Rehn's vow-renewal ceremony upon her 10-year anniversary was also broadcast. Bachelor in Paradise Season 2 couple, Jade Roper and Tanner Tolbert's wedding was also broadcast as television special in February 2016.

On January 4, 2016, Bachelor Live, a one-hour after show talk show premiered, hosted by Chris Harrison.

First airing in October 2016, Ben and Lauren: Happily Ever After? showcased the relationship of Ben and Lauren following season 20 of The Bachelor.[68]

On March 20, 2017, The Twins: Happily Ever After premiered. The series stars Haley and Emily Ferguson from season 20 of The Bachelor and showcases them "saying goodbye to the comfort and luxuries of living under their mom's roof and beginning the hilarious journey of figuring out life on their own while searching for independence and a new career."[69]

It was announced in May 2017 that another spin-off, The Bachelor Winter Games, will air in February 2018.

Questions of authenticity[edit]

On February 26, 2009, in an exclusive interview between The Bachelor season 13 contestant Megan Parris, and Steve Carbone, Megan commented that the producers edit the footage to create a fictional storyline. "I don't think [the producers] showed any real conversation I had with anyone... The viewers fail to realize that editing is what makes the show... You'll hear someone make one comment and then they'll show a clip of somebody's face to make it look like that is their facial reaction to that statement, but really, somebody made that face the day before to something else. It's just piecing things together to make a story."[70]

On March 26, 2009, Megan Parris argued that not only was the show scripted, but that producers bullied contestants into saying things to the camera that contestants did not want to say.[71] "There's nothing real about it," she said of the show's trademark "confessionals," in which contestants talk to the camera about the latest goings-on. "It is scripted," she said. "They basically will call you names, berate you, curse at you until they get you to say what they want you to say." Both ABC and Warner Bros., the studio that produces The Bachelor, had no comment.[72]

On March 15, 2010, Mike Fleiss appeared on 20/20 and said that he develops contestants into characters that will cater to his audience's tastes and that they "need [their] fair share of villains every season."[73] Fleiss has come under fire for admitting that The Bachelor has less to do with reality than it does making good television.[74]

On February 24, 2012, during the taping of The Women Tell All episode of The Bachelor, a private conversation between contestant Courtney Robertson and a show producer went public when microphones were accidentally left on in between camera takes. The conversation revealed the producer's role as a coach encouraging Robertson to fake certain emotions for the camera.[75]

The audience reactions for The Women Tell All episode are pre-recorded and inserted into the show later.[76]


In December 2011, the producer of The Bachelor sued Steve Carbone, a Bronx-born, California-raised Internet enthusiast from Frisco, Texas and proprietor of the website, for leaking unreleased information about the show, claiming Carbone encouraged contestants of both The Bachelor and The Bachelorette to break their confidentiality agreements. Carbone has denied that the source of the leaks are current contestants.[77][78]

International versions[edit]

     An upcoming season
     No longer airing
Country Name Host Network Date premiered
 Australia The Bachelor Australia Osher Günsberg[79] Network Ten September 8, 2013
 Brazil The Bachelor Fábio Arruda RedeTV! November 21, 2014
 Canada[80] The Bachelor Canada Tyler Harcott City October 3, 2012
 China[81] 黄金单身汉
The Bachelor
Qiu Qiming Mango TV
(Internet channel)
October 1, 2016
 France Bachelor, le gentleman célibataire Stéphane Rotenberg (2003-2005)
Grégory Ascher (2013–2016)
Matthieu Delormeau (2017–present)
M6 (2003-2005)
NT1 (2013–2016)
C8 (2017–present)
May 7, 2003
 Finland Suomen unelmien poikamies Sami Kuronen Nelonen February 2008
 Germany[82] Der Bachelor Arne Jessen
RTL November 19, 2003
January 4, 2011
 Indonesia The Bachelor Indonesia Arie Untung RCTI 2018
 Israel הרווק
Guy Geyor Channel 10 2009
 Italy The Bachelor - L'uomo dei sogni Cristina Parodi Canale 5 June 26, 2003
 Japan バチェラー・ジャパン
The Bachelor Japan 
Kouji Imada 今田耕司 Amazon Prime TV Video 2017
 New Zealand The Bachelor New Zealand Mike Puru TV3 March 17, 2015
 Norway Ungkaren Christopher Dons TVNorge 2003
 Poland Kawaler do wzięcia Krzysztof Banaszyk TVN October 8, 2003
 Romania[83] Burlacul Lucian Marinescu (1)
Cătălin Botezatu (2-4)
Andreea Mantea (5-)
Antena 1 June 8, 2010
 Russia[84] Холостяк
Petr Fadeev
TNT March 10, 2013
  Switzerland[85] Der Bachelor 3+ October 30, 2013
 Slovenia[86] Sanjski moški POP TV September 2004
 United Kingdom[87] The Bachelor Jeremy Milnes
Hugo Speer
BBC Three
Channel 5
March 30, 2003
August 19, 2011
Thailand Thailand[88] The Bachelor Thailand ศึกรัก...สละโสด
The Bachelor Thailand (Bachelor...Battle of Love)
Natpawin Kulkanlayadee ONE August 27, 2016
 Ukraine Холостяк
Hryhoriy Reshetnyk STB March 17, 2011
 Vietnam The Bachelor Vietnam - Anh chàng độc thân TBA TBA 2017
 India The Bachelor Tamil Nadu - Mappilai Aarya Arya Colors Tamil 2018

Note: Reruns of the original American version is also broadcast in Australia at Nine Network.


The novelty of the show[89] makes it a ripe target for parody.

Ben Stiller produced a web spoof of the series entitled Burning Love.[90]

Late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel also created a parody called "The Baby Bachelor" in Jimmy Kimmel Live!, which the titular role is given to his 3-year-old nephew Wesley.

The Fox network produced a show, Joe Millionaire, based on the premise that the bachelor was a millionaire heir, when in reality, he was not.

On June 1, 2015, Lifetime began airing Unreal, a scripted drama about a producer who works on Everlasting. It is based on Sarah Gertrude Shapiro's short film Sequin Raze and her experience as a field producer on The Bachelor.

On Rupaul's Drag Race All Stars Season 3 Episode 3, the main challenge consisted of a parody called "The B*tchelor" where guest judge Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman played the Bachelor while the drag contestants portrayed the romantic interests.

See also[edit]


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