Courtney apologizes, but is it possible to believe this season’s Bachelor villain?

On The Bachelor, the unthinkable/predictable happened: Courtney Robertson apologized for being awful and professed her love for Ben Flajnik. “This did bring out the worst in me at times,” she confessed, “I’m not proud of that. And she also said, “I’m really hoping the damage I’ve caused the other girls doesn’t make me lose him.”

Considering her behavior all season, she hasn’t earned any trust. But there were times when she was talking about Ben and her behavior that I thought it may have been real. Really! Ben bought it, of course. But was she genuine?

She started by confessing, “Maybe I’ve said some things that were hurtful at times,” and Ben quickly wrote her off. “I really don’t want to get into it; we’ll talk about it later. I’m enjoying the day,” he said, and then put his fingers in his ears and said na-na-na-na-na.

In a teary confessional, she told us, “Ben seems genuinely concerned…knowing that I’ve made it harder for him just breaks my heart. … He’s everything that I’ve ever dreamed of and wanted and I love him so much. I don’t want to hurt him, and I feel like all of this stuff with the girls is hurting him. … There’s a dark cloud over me. It’s like a fear of losing him. I don’t know if we can recover from all of this stuff.”

She’s right, isn’t she? I mean, except for the fact that Ben’s kind of a dolt who wants a cardboard cutout instead of a real person, based upon his decisions so far.

She also said, “I think that I’ve been totally immature at times, and looking back, I could have done things differently.” Later, in that grating baby voice of hers that causes pets everywhere to pee on their owners’ pillows, she said, “maybe what I thought was being in love wasn’t, because it didn’t feel like this.”

If this is an act, it’s an impressive one.

The most interesting moment to me was before they went into their fantasy suite for some suite fun when she said, “The thing that worries me is I don’t want you to feel like I’m being fake or feel like you don’t know me–that worries me.” Ben completely ignored her acknowledgement that she might be fake, something he didn’t suggest first. “That wasn’t my concern,” he said, adding, “the Courtney that I know is the Courtney that I’m falling in love with.”

But what Courtney is that?

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.