Hollywood Matt Grant (Bachelor 12 WTA)
I’m pretty sure that the Women Tell All was the first Bachelor Special in some time not to mention Trista’s baby. As always they brought fifteen women back for the show, but maybe only six of them got to say anything. It was also quite noticeable that when they brought Matt out that none of the women were allowed to get within slugging distance. And what was with the makeover? Matt looked like he’d gone Hollywood and as if he had no plans to ever go back to England. Or maybe he shaved his head because he got lice or something from kissing random women, men, or pets at parties in Malibu. Who knows? There's also that persistent rumor that he doesn't have a job back in England any longer.
They gave Stacey, the trashy inebriated lady who offered Matt her panties at the opening night cocktail party almost five minutes of screen time. On WTA she appeared either sober or properly medicated and offered Matt a second more modest pair of her underwear. Matt pretended to try them on, but I have to ask what was the point? She only needed her chance to say “I’m really embarrassed” then disappear from our televisions forever.
Ditto with getting to see that nice Church organizer from Florida tear apart a beer can with her teeth a second time. What’s with reprising the freak show? Was this installment that boring?
Pretty much the only really interesting moment came when Matt tried to explain why he rejected Amanda Rantuccio, who btw came across really well. Matt claimed that he only talked “like” with Amanda, while with Chelsea he had actually discussed “love” and oh yes with Shayne too. This hesitation no doubt buoyed the hopes of the Chelsea fans, but I need to point out that with this Bachelor what he says about or to the lady is always far less significant than what he does. Matt was no longer dressed as a British banker. He’s now dressing and grooming like a really tall Jason Priestley with an accent, Bachelor 90210.
Amanda struck me as sincere, intelligent, and well-spoken, though I did hesitate a little when she talked about their story just beginning. She also got plenty of camera time (including a meeps montage) on WTA and she looked great. Are they thinking Bachelorette? Marshana Ritchie also got a suspiciously large amount of talk time to explain her strong personality. Equally interesting, Noelle Drake made it to the final four and didn’t get to say a single word at the WTA and certainly nothing directly to Matt. Ashlee Williss didn’t sing a note. Holly Durst didn’t get to discuss her tanning machine. Maybe they talked and simply got edited out? Perhaps most significant of all though, there just wasn’t much mention of the two finalists Shayne or Chelsea.
I do have to ask if Robin Canfield or Marshana Ritchie were all that interesting? With Robin, her dress was longer and more substantial than her explanations of her endless demands for one on one time. I think Marshana got as much time as she did because her survival on the show might have been one of the most likeable things about Matt Grant. He was the first Bachelor to actually seriously consider the black one. Marshana’s personal style clearly differed from the other ladies. Letting her be Marshana on the WTA likely helped Matt’s image. Still when Chris announced the romantic wedding proposal ending for one of the “best Bachelors ever”, the studio applause just didn’t sound all that enthusiastic.
Actually, if I noticed anything about this installment of the Bachelor, it’s the fact that it’s so emotionally tepid. Chelsea and Shayne have their fans as well as their detractors (I’m not holding my breath for any invitations to the Lamas house), but the level of enthusiasm for any of the ladies didn’t quite happen with the possible exception of Amanda. So much of the camera time went to Shayne that it was just difficult to bond with any of the other candidates including Chelsea (I should mention that many sleuthers seem to be saying that it's Chelsea). Even if Shayne and Matt really did fall in love, I believe that the producers forgot that the viewers need to fall in love with at least one of them as individuals. Things could turn some in the final episode, but I can’t say that Matt has struck me as romantic in any significant way unless you confuse ready physical affection with romance. Has he made any gestures to the ladies, shown any special level of sensitivity, or even have a memorable moment? I tend to remember Matt Grant talking to a London phone booth or lusting after sea turtles off Barbados. Even Brad Womack got to look at photos of Deanna’s mother.
This year, the Women Tell All might have been the winner’s show. Poor Chris Harrison didn’t even have much to ad lib about. At one point Marshana talked about leaving the show and feeling okay about it because women like Amanda and Noelle were still in the pack (as in he had some great choices if he really wanted what he said he wanted). I had to nod my head and agree both with what she didn’t say and what Amanda and Noelle’s presence on the stage implied. I just wish they had subtitles to show what some of these ladies were really thinking.
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