The Bachelorette TV Poster Image

The Bachelorette



Televised search for love has an iffy premise.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Offers an unrealistic and misleading message that suggests that finding a husband on a reality show can produce a "fairy-tale ending."

Positive role models

The single men in the bachelorette's dating pool are relatively diverse in terms of what they do for a living and where they live, but reflect some sexist ideas about what it means to be attractive husband material.

Not applicable

There are shirtless guys a-plenty and sexual tension to spare. Some on-camera kissing takes place -- with the implication of hot and heavy action behind the scenes -- as the series progresses. The men living in the mansion's guest house also have to shower in an outdoor "stall" with no walls ... but their private parts stay covered with the aid of a black censor bar.


Pretty clean; "bastard" is audible, but terms like "a--hole" and worse are bleeped.

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Most adult contestants drink alcohol socially, though one abstains for religious reasons.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this reality dating show has a troubling basic premise -- that it's both reasonable and feasible for a woman to hand-pick her future husband from a pool of 25 strangers. The producers are clearly pushing the idea of a "fairy-tale ending" for their fair bachelorette (the phrase is uttered four times in the season premiere alone). But as the series progresses, the emphasis quickly shifts to sexual chemistry, competition, and jealousy. The action is tame enough for older teens but too hot for tweens and younger -- not much besides kissing is shown, but plenty more is implied. Expect some salty language and drinking as well.

What's the story?

Building on the success of long-running reality dating show The Bachelor, this spin-off gives a jilted bachelorette who didn't get the proposal she was looking for on The Bachelor a second chance to find true love among her own pool of 25 single men. In an elimination-style series of one-on-one "dates" and group challenges, she gradually whittles her prospective suitors down to just one lucky guy, who's presumably the man she's going to marry.

Is it any good?


Unless you're a sucker for overwrought romance, THE BACHELORETTE is downright difficult to watch. The dramatic drive-ups in a limousine, the emotional rose ceremonies, the dramatically lit mansion with the glowing fireplaces -- it's all a bit much for a thinking person. But one thing's for sure: This show succeeds in preying upon our subconscious desire for fairy-tale endings.

While the bachelorette herself seems to have true intentions, it's unlikely that kids will learn any meaningful lessons from her search -- except that they should never, ever, sign up to become a future Bachelorette contestant.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the success rates of reality shows that purport to help people find "true love." What are the disadvantages to meeting your future spouse on a nationally televised dating show? Are there any advantages you can think of? Do you think the bachelorette's prospective mates are really looking for romance -- or their 15 minutes of fame? What about the bachelorette herself? Do you think her motives for being on the show are 100% genuine?

TV details

Premiere date:May 19, 2008
Cast:Chris Harrison
Genre:Reality TV
TV rating:TV-14

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Parent of a 12 year old Written byPatty101 July 6, 2010


Teen, 13 years old Written byTrust me I know May 19, 2014

It is FINE

*You see, I am only 13, so my advice might not seem completely credible, but I am going to try an be as accurate as I can.* Okay, the Idea of this show might seem a little questionable, but it really isn't as bad as it seems. For most children and teens my age, nothing on this show is going to really affects the mind. Unless your kid has been REALLY overprotected, or he or she is very sensitive, they'll be fine. Nothing on the show is new to most kids, it's not like some romance and kissing is anything different than most things that we already have access to. :T So STOP being paranoid! Unless your child is super fragile, watch the show! It's very interesting! :)
Teen, 15 years old Written byi rate things August 17, 2013

Sexist and steriotypical

The bachelorette is not worth your time, or your kids time. It gives kids the idea that disloyalty is okay. Even if it is not with romance. Also, in the bachelor, the man proposes to the woman. But in the bachelorette, the man STILL proposes to the women. It is very sexist.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking