Mariachis and Malfunctions: 'The Bachelor' Weeks five and six

Wednesday, February 10, 2016 - 7:03pm

“How do we make ‘Sisterwives’ into an enjoyable television experience that we won’t face legal trouble for due to its encouragement of polygamy?” said a daft, ambitious television producer once upon a godless time.

And thus, “The Bachelor” was born.

Queue the Mariachi Band.

A hot air balloon rises and in the distance we see a view of a mansion. Ben sits with girl beside him. The pair stare into each other’s eyes as if they’re staring into the face of God, and then kiss deeply, almost desperately, trying to savor the time they’ve been granted. A panorama tells us they’re alone over a desert, no sign of humanity in sight. A laugh, a smile, a stroke of the cheek. Then the girl gently says over the scream of the plane’s engine, “Does my hair look OK?”

Of course you look OK, Amanda, you woke up in a state of pristine beauty that few people ever achieve in their life. You know you look good, we know you look good, let’s just move on, shall we?

Week Five and it feels as if this show is stuck in a lull, and not just any kind of lull. The kind where you find yourself repeatedly banging your head against a wall but not feeling any semblance of pain because your nerve ends have been stunted by an overexposure to previous seasons of the show.

Mexico City: Where the People Are Friendly. Throw caution and any regard for safety to the wind, ABC saw an opportunity and seized it. But then again, murder obviously isn’t a primary concern for ABC. After all, they have repeatedly placed over 20 women in a house together for lengthy periods of time which presents the constant threat of crimes against humanity.

I’m going to level with you, I still don’t know which twin is on the show, but she is slowly losing relevance because it’s all about Olivia now. The show has taken its typical trajectory with the crazy girl getting crazier, finally losing it and saying something offensive. The man is then confronted and loses all sense of his masculinity as he tries to resolve unresolvable feelings of discomfort because this is a reality television program that needs cattiness to keep its head above the tsunami of rationality being thrown its way by literally every other aspect of this godforesaken planet. And I’m including the Kardashians in that assessment.

And yet, “The Bachelor” still remains afloat, lacksadascially stretched out on a floating lawn chair protected by its bubble of money and middle-aged women.

We end Week Five with a cliffhanger of momentous proportions, and not because Olivia referred to Amanda as a “Teen Mom,” but because “Teen Mom” immediately forced ABC to pay reparations for emotional trauma upon being mentioned on their show. Even they are above that.

Jubilee and Jennifer said their goodbyes as the audience discovered that not only has Ben cultivated a homogeneous gene pool of blondes, but also discriminates against the letter J.

Week Six and wow! Leah finally speaks! But not words of kindness or validation, no, because The Bachelor has not made it this long by allowing women to support one another. She wants a one-on-one because for the first time all season, she has made the executive decision to sell her soul. And her sanity. All while yelling about throwing a girl under a bus. That’s stability.

But, alas, Leah’s break in sanity doesn’t prove to be worth it. Poor, poor Leah meets her demise by the end of the episode.

Turns out there was one brunette left, but she’s having some emotional difficulties that intrigue Ben. On the other hand, the last time a woman had emotional difficulties in public it was in the form of “The Awakening,” and we all know how that one ended.

Emily! That’s the twin that stayed! Emily!

Let’s take it back a couple seasons for a moments. A few seasons of “The Bachelorette” ago, there was an infamous scene in which a poor suitor whose name I don’t remember was left deserted on a cliff in Ireland with quite literally no humanity in sight.

Olivia’s physical desertion on the beach doesn’t come close to this, but I imagine it does in terms of companionship.

And that’s that. The main entertainment value of the show is finally disappears as ABC producers gather up the remains of Olivia’s belongings and shattered confidence as the remaining girls joyously look on.

Another week and another dip into a world of drama and suspense that is really proving that you don’t have to place every modern work of fiction in a post-apocalyptic world. Reality is a perfectly fitting setting as is.