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Best of the Bachelor

Warner Bros. // Unrated // September 10, 2002
List Price: $19.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]

Review by Gil Jawetz | posted September 19, 2002 | E-mail the Author

THE STRAIGHT DOPE:
Has there been a more despicable TV show lately than The Bachelor? Probably. Having missed the short run of the "reality" show earlier this year I thought I'd catch up with The Best of the Bachelor only to discover that this two-hour and twenty-minute program seems to be the entire season crammed onto one disc. Considering that there are no commercials and no opening or closing credits, the running time looks like it might account for every sleazy, back-stabbing moment of this shameful show.

Shortly after meeting Alex the bachelor I already felt I needed a shower. This is one of the most insincere, lecherous characters I've ever encountered and that any woman would fall for him is beyond belief. The show starts off with twenty-five hard-up women looking to score a husband. Alex whittles down the group over a series of rose-giving ceremonies and eventually gets down to a more manageable grouping.

Without giving away the secrets of who does what with whom, I'll describe a few of the women. Shannon starts off seeming like Alex's dream girl. He finds her smart, funny and beautiful, but she hesitates to completely open up to the bachelor and he wants immediate satisfaction. Trista (who is condescendingly credited as a Miami Heat dancer when her other occupation is as a child psychologist) is also guarded against too much intimacy too soon, something that Alex calls "the mystery of Trista." Amanda is the 23 year old fun girl, ready and willing, something that Alex likes a lot. And Kim is a genius who really likes to read, but "not fiction or non-fiction or stuff like that." Some of the girls are creepy and stalkerish (one has an on-air panic attack when she fails to make it to the next level) while others are way too eager to please. Trista is the only one who comes off as a well-rounded real person, a character trait that had me screaming at the TV "Run, Trista, run!"

Through it all Alex grins like the Cheshire Cat. He has no qualms about bedding one girl and then trying to play another one into a corner of exclusivity. He lies to the girls time and again about their position in the pecking order. There probably isn't any way to come off as a truly good person in these circumstances but Alex is the most cliched slimeball to disgrace a screen.

So, is The Best of the Bachelor a good DVD? The show itself is garbage, but the DVD is entertaining. There's something appealingly lurid about marathoning it through The Bachelor's exploits. It's doubtful, however, that anyone but the biggest Bachelor fans would need to watch the show a second time.

VIDEO:
The full-frame image basically looks like broadcast video. Some compression is occasionally evident but overall it looks fine.

AUDIO:
The Dolby Digital 2.0 audio is also fine. Voices are clear and the bland music sounds fine. English, French and Spanish subtitles are included.

EXTRAS:
The disc is pretty packed with extras. A nice selection of additional footage is included as well as interviews with both of the final two girls. A phone call between the bachelor and his runner-up is included that perfectly underscores just what a scumbag he is and how lucky she was to get away. The disc also includes additional interviews with a couple of the other girls plus footage from a secret reandevouz between the bachelor and his chosen girl that took place in between the show's wrap and the airing of the final episode. Sadly, nothing is said about the rumor that the lovely winning couple called it quits shortly after the show. Too bad. I guess that'll be on the E! channel in a couple of years.

FINAL THOUGHTS:
I sound pretty down on The Bachelor and the show is crap, to be sure. Still, if you want to see a slimy, scheming guy take advantage of a bunch of none-too-bright women while holding out the carrot of marriage, it's the only game in town.

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