The Bachelor

Common Sense Media says

Reality "fairy tale" with questionable values.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The series sends questionable messages about love, romance, and what it takes to build a relationship. The women often question their self-worth when they are rejected.

Positive role models

Many of the young women are portrayed as catty, desperate, and insecure. Most of them are educated career women, but they appear to have no goals other than to snag a husband. Few contestants of color or over the age of 35. All are very slim and attractive.

Violence

The women sometimes engage in some semi-playful pushing and punching with their date when they get upset.

Sex

Lots of skimpy outfits and bathing suits; many close-up shots of passionate kissing. In some episodes the bachelor goes on overnight dates with individual women; on other nights women try to find ways to meet him in his room. Frank sex talk.

Language

Words like "bitch" and "pissed" are common. Occasional curses ("s--t," "f--k") are bleeped with mouths blurred. The women sometimes call each other names.

Consumerism

The camera zooms in on sponsors' products frequently, and there are always mentions of specific hotel chains, such as the W.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Wine, champagne, and fancy cocktails are frequently consumed on dates. The women also drink at the house.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this dating competition show features multiple women competing for the affections of a single man. They constantly make catty comments, backstab each other, wear revealing clothing and bathing suits, and sometimes drink too much. The Bachelor kisses many of them, and a few go on overnight "fantasy" dates with him. There is some frank sex talk and occasional profanity ("bitch,” “pissed," and stronger words are bleeped with mouths blurred).

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Each installment of THE BACHELOR features 25 women competing to win the heart of a single man who will hopefully become her husband. Each season’s “prize”, which have included a winery heir, an actor's brother, a football player, and a real-life prince, spend time with the women going on outdoor adventures, helicopter rides, and of course, wining and dining, during individual and group dates. Each week the women who continue to impress him receive roses and are invited to continue living in a luxurious house, accompany him to exotic destinations, go on overnight fantasy dates, and even meet his parents. The woman lucky enough to be chosen at the end of the competition must then wait and see if she will become his soul mate.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

The reality dating competition relies on stretch limos, high-end hotels, and candle-lit dinners to create a romantic fantasy that is popular among teen viewers. But beneath the show’s shiny veneers are problematic messages about gender roles, dating, relationships, and marriage. These become even more problematic when previously featured bachelors return to try their hand at it again, despite the obvious failure of the process the first time.

The women on the show often connect their self-worth to their ability to “snag” the bachelor, and usually engage in insecure behavior in order to get his attention. Meanwhile, each bachelor, who is always polite and respectful, is more than willing to kiss and profess their affection for different women (sometimes during a single night). Teens may find it entertaining, but this kind of fantasy isn't without its problems.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the show’s messages, like the idea that a young woman is a failure if she's single and that marriage should be the ultimate goal. What do dating competition shows like this suggest about relationships? Marriage? Can you really find true love in six weeks?

  • Parents and teens may want to discuss the kind of messages the show’s exotic locales, steamy hot tub scenes, and overnight dates send about sex and sexual activity. How appropriate is some of the behavior being featured here?

TV details

Cast:Brad Womack, Chris Harrison
Networks:ABC, VH1
Genre:Reality TV
TV rating:TV-PG
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of The Bachelor was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Adult Written byA Person With C... March 4, 2010
AGE
14
QUALITY
 

Ok for ages 16 and up but HORRIBLE for ages 15 and below.

This is a complete set up for young kids to watch! Do not watch this show if you are younger than 16 years old!
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written byForknose April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Poor

This is pointless reality tv.
Adult Written byPanya April 9, 2008
AGE
17
QUALITY
 

Definitely not for kids

Why would anyone let a child watch this? It's awful.

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