Reality television programs do not simply showcase the narcissistic and catty drama, they do actually teach us about human nature and the best and worst in human relationships. The Bachelor has taught me:
1. The bachelor, himself, is normally not only good looking but good natured, too. The show’s success is contingent on a popular (reasonable) bachelor.
2. Every date seems to put the ladies into challenging situations that reveal their character. A lot of the dates test the ladies’ ability to adapt to real life, practical situations.
3. Envy and jealousy are never too far away. The good thing is it’s a melting pot of character tests. Every lady who responds in a catty fashion has revealed a lack of character.
4. There is always a big picture element in every episode; the sceptical viewer has to get over the immaturity and vanity to see the deeper message.
5. Sitting with one’s wife, having gotten over the temptation to ridicule the show, is a good idea if a husband wants to spend time with his wife.
6. The drama of the rose-giving ceremony is intended to evoke suspense. It breaks hearts. Each lady left on the shelf reveals the rejection she experiences. The cameras miss nothing.
7. Uncomfortable situations are common for the ladies involved. It’s a cost any potential contestant on reality television needs to be ready for.
8. The unfortunate thing for the ladies is they get so focused on winning the bachelor’s heart, they betray their own.
9. Group dates, like a cocktail party, resemble a zoo; with animals (the ladies) pacing up and down, seething away on the inside. The fearful ones are likely to make a move prematurely, and many burn their bridges.
10. There are always opportunities for the show’s producers to change the pace up. This was done, on a recent episode, by adding extra ladies. The easiest thing to ensure the success of these types of series’ is to be creative.
11. I am still very unsure how sustainable the relationships from The Bachelor are. It would be fascinating to consider the statistics for those who went on and married.
12. The Bachelor, like all reality television, is masterfully produced to capture and keep an audience.
13. My overall summation is that reality shows like The Bachelor are worldly, and, notwithstanding the character revealing and growth components, they are unhelpful for Christians desiring growth with God.
We can learn something from reality television if we are looking for the deeper theme, which is normally about character development and refinement.
Reality television can seem vain and narcissistic, but it reveals character, and the person of character is most likely to win.
© 2014 S. J. Wickham.