Rating Each Batshit Insane ‘Bachelorette’ Contestant's Premiere Performance

bachelorette premiere 2017 cast

So much of the commentary on this season of The Bachelorette is surely going to focus on Rachel's status as the first black Bachelor/ette, which is indeed a momentous and sorely needed development in the program's deeply whitewashed history. But I'm not going to spend any time on that, because people are people, and more importantly, most people on this show suck in their own unique and at least somewhat interesting ways, so I'm going to focus there that instead.

As always, I've broken down each of the guys who got roses, and skipped the ones who didn't, because they don't deserve our attention, and also I passed out on the couch at midnight in the middle of writing this last night. To the guys!

 rachel bachelorette


Ladies and gents, your First Impression Rose Winner, First (and only, by my count) Makeout Session-Getter, and our first true contender on this show. Bryan is a devilishly handsome Colombian fellow who says charming things like that he's "good trouble" in Spanish, then really makes that first kiss count -- it's like high-powered shop-vac attached itself to Rachel's mouth, but she obviously seems to dig it. 


If you took the guy who's really good at lip-synching "Dancing in the Streets" from Ski Patrol, and enrolled him in an intensive course on how to look like you sell subprime mortgages and truly believe that what you're doing is noble, as you're the only way those good honest hard-working people with credit scores of negative-700 will get to realize the American dream, you'd still be only halfway to Jonathan. 

matt the bachelorette 2017


The most visionary social commentary is often overlooked in its own time. Matt dared to show us all that black and white can coexist in a single being, and that our differences aren't really differences at all, but are in fact just constructs that humans, ever driven by fear, are helpless to grab onto and twist into weapons of hatred and doubt and smoldering negativity -- but that in the end, we are all one, and the sooner we realize that, the sooner we can make those first small shuffles towards the only future that won't see humanity destroy itself, in a pitiful quest to save itself. Which is to say: he showed up in a full-body penguin costume. 

Jack Stone

Jack Stone's mom died when he was in high school, which is obviously rough -- but the good people of The Bachelorette let him use the name "Jack Stone" instead of just "Jack" to make up for it. When they show him in his pre-limo-night intro scene back in Texas, he has a doodle, which is cool! My sister has one and he's a wonderful maniac and you should follow him on Instagram. But then they reveal that he uses one of those plastic things that make it so you can fling tennis balls extra far, because he's overly concerned with wanting his dog to think he has a sweet arm, which I obviously can't support, for obvious reasons. 


While he's absolutely poised to be a major detestable presence and possibly even legit villain on this show -- he tells us very definitively that he's wearing a $2000 suit (COME ON!!!) and that he possesses "perfect hair and facial features" -- I'm not convinced that I see the level of creativity or commitment to all-consuming odious detestability required to really pull it off over an entire season. Which is a shame, really, as Jamey clearly sucks, and this show always needs a slimy narcissistic shit-bag to function properly. So Jamey: just suck as hard as you possibly can, suck harder than all those people who tell you you suck thought you could ever suck, and you will suck your way right to at least a half-season of this show sucking less than it would without you.  


He seems like a good honest dude, the type of good honest dude who's so honest that he told everyone on his ABC.com bio that he once got a boner in a board meeting and had to present sitting down. 


It's-a-me, DeMario!!! He never says that even once. He's also accused -- on a hot tip from hot Whitney from Rachel's season -- of being here for the wrong reasons, which may impersonating his plumber brother named DeLuigi. 


Alex lifts a lot of weights, but he also does Rubix Cubes, which is why his mom told him he has an IQ of 180, the same as noted iCarly actor James Woods. And while we're here, this is James Woods' actual IMDB bio: "James Woods is a leanly built, strangely handsome actor-producer-director with intense eyes and a sometimes untrustworthy grin, who has been impressing audiences for over three decades with his compelling performances." My wife says Alex is "really, really handsome" and that James Woods is "I don't know Ben, I don't know who he is, he has a receding hairline and he smirks, I've never seen him, I'm sorry". 


My notes: "Who?"

adam rachel bachelorette


He came with a ventriloquist doll, which are always great, because on this show, with all these guys, you have to make a good strong first impression and sometimes you need a ventriloquist doll to prove you deserve to stay that first cut-heavy night. Honestly, it's a great plan, until you realize that the ventriloquist doll is not in fact a ventriloquist doll, and just a scaled-down replica of himself named Adam Jr that doesn't even have a mouth that moves. And then you realize that Adam doesn't even have anything charming to say about why he carries around a replica doll of himself, and doesn't have any jokes in the chamber for when Rachel inevitably asks about the terrifying creature, and you come to the conclusion that Adam just got a rose strictly because he brought this doll and that everyone's plan on this show should be Do Something Stupid So She Notices You and Gives You a Pity Rose, Then, In the Next Episode, Swiftly Enact A Plan to Make Her Forget That You Are a Desperate Fucking Psychopath.


Eric was another quiet one, but he loves Bad Boys, so he clearly lets his Tea Leoni movies do the talking for him. 

anthony bachelorette 2017


Anthony didn't do a whole lot on this first episode, but he's a big jacked handsome dude who wears two earrings in his ABC.com photo, so, there you have it. 

Pretty Boy Pitbull Kenny King

He's a professional wrestler. Half of his abandoned 10-year-old daughter's name -- Mackenzie Rachel -- is the same as the Bachelorette's. Would anyone take a look at this information and presume that Pretty Boy Pitbull Kenny King is by far the sweetest man on this show and deserves to -- and hopefully does -- go deep in this competition? 


He's a fireman, so he picks her up. Bad for originality, good for having career prospects at Enterprise Rent-a-Car when his fireman phase is over. 


Dean told Rachel at the Following the Last Flower Show that he wants to go black and never go back. And then he says it again when he gets out of the limo, to really solidify his unoriginal catchphrase. Is this even close to a cool thing to say, from a cultural sensitivity standpoint? I honestly don't know at this point, but Chris Harrison cleared it so I guess it is. Everyone please keep an eye out for Dean going back, and please let me know if he so much as ponders doing so. 

whaboom bachelorette 2017


The man has a catchphrase. It's not even a very good catchphrase, as evidenced by the fact that he has to convulse around like he was being tased while twerking to sell it. He also has Whaboom t-shirts and tank tops that you should definitely buy. But hell, he was in a Doritos Super Bowl commercial, so all of this is somehow working. And honestly, I kinda don't mind.  


Peter is definitely shaping up to be another long-term-potential guy on this show. His plaid tux is well over the top but honestly pretty fly, he bills himself as a good solid charming Midwestern boy from Wisconsin -- Nick obviously proved that doesn't hold true, but we can't pin his sins on all the sons of The Bratwurst State -- and he brought Rachel chocolate. It turns out Rachel doesn't like chocolate!! But the best thing anyone else brought her was a scale replica doll of themselves, which means chocolate goes a looooong way. 

brady rachel bachelorette


Because he clearly didn't navigate himself to the WikiHow.com page about how to break the ice -- which recommends: "Comment on their name. If they have a somewhat unusual name (old fashioned, ethnic, anything other than the standard Sarah/John), then comment on and ask them about their name. You can ask if they were named after someone, how their parents chose the name, and if they like their name, etc." -- John plops down a giant block of ice, and breaks that, with a sledgehammer. 

Also, this is a widely read and wonderfully illustrated 29-part WikiHow guide to How to Clean Your Room. 


Sure, Josiah's wearing a two-tone tux with Batman-wing lapels that makes him look like a valet who's about to head to junior prom. Yes, he's got a problem with using horrific lawyer puns because he is one (just like Rachel! God, it MUST be fate). Yeah, his apartment looks like he rented it from a 92-year-old shut-in with a disdain for using spackle to cover up holes in walls. But Josiah also has the most insanely damaging woe-is-him backstory: his brother hung himself in the backyard after being bullied, and Josiah cut him down from the tree -- when he was seven goddamn years old. So I won't say anything bad about him, starting...now. 


I don't have a ton on Lee but he's a singer/songwriter with a horseshoe tattoo who claims his favorite movie is Gone With the Wind, so: fuck you, Lee. 

kenny bachelorette 2017


Diggy considers himself to be a fashion icon, and honestly, I can't really argue with him. The man has committed himself to looking fly, and it's working. He's got 575 pairs of sneakers, at least two of which are Nike Foamposites, which means he's a decent human being, and my wife has decided that he's handsome. There are two possibilities here: Diggy is as charming as he seems, and goes pretty deep, or Diggy will only ever talk about $350 shirts with off-color plackets, and Diggy will be sent right back to the Magnificent Mile in Chicago and buy a vest to make himself feel something again. 


If you crossed LeVar Burton (when his eyes aren't covered by that cool thing from Star Trek) with Charlotte Hornets point guard Kemba Walker, and added one good solid spin-o-rama from the Carlton Dance, you'd have Fred. Which is maybe why Rachel doesn't recognize him when she sees him, even though they went to the same high school, and Rachel was his camp counselor at one point. Even though she's great at not truly showing it and humors him well, Rachel seems a little standoffish and freaked out by this long-game super-stalk, which is a shame, because I bet Fred was dope at making Chinese Staircase lanyard bracelets.

Blake E

If you took every single cliche that a reality show contestant could embody, put them in a giant hat, shook that hat around, and then started randomly picking them out one by one, you would construct, basically, Blake E. Blake E works out a lot -- in fact, he's a personal trainer and nutritionist! Blake E does not wish to be the guy who talks about his penis, and then proceeds to talk about people who talk about his penis. Blake E's libido is above average and he graduated from high school to PHD level in sex in his last relationship. Blake E shows up to the mansion with a marching band, because he is a drummer. Blake E is the only person who openly hates Whaboom to his face, which sets him up as the primary antagonist of the bunch. Blake E Has a haircut from Reality Bites. Buttttt...who knows, maybe there's something in there!

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Ben Robinson is the chief creative officer at Thrillist and our resident expert on all things The Bachelor.