Jake’s unsettling quest for a wife leads him to cut four more women from the auction block

I’ve missed a few episodes of The Bachelor, so I tuned in last night to watch Jake dump four women, even though he only had to eliminate one, and simultaneously make the whole thing even more unseemly. For a total boring blank slate, Jake sure is kind of creepy.

First, on his one-rose date with Kathryn and Ella, he sent Ella home immediately, and then surprised Kathryn by sending her home, too. But the best part came during the rose ceremony when he had two roses left and three women. He started doing his Jake thing, where he’s either choking up or short circuiting, and left the room, a camera following. A producer encouraged him to talk to Chris Harrison, who was standing outside in the courtyard with a camera already on him (hmm, why?).

Then Jake awkwardly asked Chris for advice: “What would you do, if you were in this situation? Do I have to give out two more roses?” I joked that it looked like he was going to give a rose to Chris Harrison, and he actually kind of did, because when Chris came to reclaim a rose and shock the women, there he was standing next to his bro, holding a rose.

Chris told Jake, “just so we’re clear, you know for a fact that there’s two women in there that are definitely not going to be your wife.” And this gets at my central problem with Jake: He makes the whole thing seem like a bachelorette auction, like he’s picking the perfect “wife” off a store shelf, even though he can’t articulate what the hell he actually wants beyond some vague reference to “values.”

Of the three remaining women, Ashleigh, Jessie, and Vienna, he decided to keep Vienna, causing panic. Ali said, “If that’s what he wants, I am not what he wants.” The most baffling part to me was why the women were upset, because who the hell would want to be with Jake?

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.