Am I really doing this? Yes. Apparently I am committing to another five weeks of this madness.
Welcome to the first ever Aussie Bachelorette. Finally, they’ve put a woman in charge. Sort of. At least it’s not like this year’s US Bachelorette where the guys got to choose between two Bachelorettes on the first night (Boo! Hiss!).
Tonight’s episode opens with a slow-mo replay of last year’s finale where Blake proposed to Sam in Africa. This is followed up with dramatic music and a montage of all the magazines and news programs covering their break-up after Blake decided he wanted to go out with Louise instead.
To show that Sam has moved on, we watch her wander the beach in ripped jeans and a cosy cream jumper as she muses about how difficult the last year has been. She NEVER wants to go through anything like that again. So what better way to avoid it than to come back to the franchise and have another go? I know that’s what I would do.
And just to reinforce that she means business, Sam is now a brunette.
Before heading off to the mansion, Sam has a quick catch-up with her family. Well, her sister and two of her brothers anyway. Sam’s sister is not keen for her to return to the show, but Sam assures that the worst has already happened, so it can only get better (I’m sorry, but did she not watch Kaitlyn’s season?).
Yep. Sam is optimistic. If she doesn’t put herself back out there, she might never find love. Because in Sam’s eyes, the only way to find said love is to date 14 men simultaneously.
She does, however, tell us that she probably won’t accept a proposal this time around. When asked by one of her brothers what she would say if asked, she answers ‘maybe we should just be boyfriend and girlfriend first’.
After a session in hair and makeup, Sam arrives at the mansion wearing that gorgeous red dress we saw in all the previews. Osher welcomes us in his trademark way and tells us about the 14 ‘very eligible’ men (whatever that means) ready to win over Sam.
But before she gets to meet them, we are given a sneak peek of the few worth looking out for.
Richie is 30, blondish and works as a rope access technician – which is just a fancy term for abseiling around mines and oil rigs. He also works out, judging by the footage of him doing push-ups in the park.
Sasha is also 30 and he’s an engineer. He tells us that he would trade in his cars and career for that special person. Aw. Love is more important than cars.
Michael is a 34 year old soccer player. He was in the 2000 Olympics and has played for the Socceroos. He has tattoos on one arm. I can’t decide how I feel about him yet, but first impressions aren’t all bad.
Davey is a carpenter and admits that people find him annoying. One of his nicknames is Love Nuts because he is a serial dater. His dad is a huge fan of the show and tells Davie not to be a dick. I love Davie’s dad.
Osher greets Sam looking more like a suitor than host. If I didn’t know he already had a partner, I would wonder if he was after her himself.
Sam tells us that she’s changed, i.e. she is stronger than last time and that she knows herself better. She reminds us that she is a real person, so we should keep that in mind when judging her from now on.
Osher tells her how happy he is that she is the Bachelorette, and then leaves her so she can meet her man harem.
Let the games begin!
Out of the limo first is Dave (not to be confused with David or Davey). He is a sweet and cute plumber from Sydney.
Next up is Alex, a financial consultant with an awesome English accent. He kind of looks like Jeff Bridges’ character in Iron Man, but seems really nice. He brings Sam a pair of ballet flats for her to wear later if her feet get sore.
Then it’s annoying Davey’s turn, and he tells us he’s pooping himself. He rips a few flowers out of a nearby bush to present to Sam and tells her how he hopes he doesn’t get nipple rash (because I guess that’s a potential hazard when meeting new people?).
We know someone fun is about to arrive because groovy music starts to play. It’s David, the international model who looks like a cross between Leonardo DiCaprio and Matthew Newton. I had high hopes for him, but he seems a bit odd. And not just because he uses the word conflictuous.
Sasha the engineer is next. He brings a red serviette that he folds into a rose for Sam. Sam actually finds herself stumbling over her words and admits that he makes her nervous. When he says he’ll head on inside, she actually asks him to stay a bit longer. Ooh.
Drew arrives. He is a 31 year old sleep technician (I’m assuming this is not a fancy term for someone who spends all day in bed) with long hair. He’s wearing a glove, which Sam is a bit weirded out by, until an owl actually swoops out of nowhere and lands on his arm.
They don’t even bleep out Sam’s swear words. ‘Holy shit! Where did that come from? Hogwarts?’ is her hilarious reaction.
She then laughs and snorts, which Drew finds endearing. The owl is called Giselle and it leaves a note with the most overused quote in history:
(See? I even found a ready-made meme of it!)
At least Drew makes light of the fact that it’s cheesy. ‘I think I saw that quote on a fridge magnet or something,’ he jokes.
Tony arrives and gets exactly two seconds of screen time.
Kayne gets about five additional seconds, but only because he brought along some Frosty Fruit ice blocks to celebrate Sam’s surname (which is Frost if it wasn’t already obvious).
Luke talks about surrendering to the process. Sam finds the word surrender a bit off-putting.
Kieran wants seven kids, to which Sam’s reaction is understandably a bit taken aback.
Shane rocks up in a Hawaiian shirt, on an electric skateboard, and with week-old stubble and bouffy, unkempt hair. He seems nice, but a bit out of place in such an artificial environment.
Will is a musician with even crazier hair than Shane. He looks like a mad scientist or a wacky orchestra conductor.
He says he’s going on the show because YOLO. He’s wearing a velvet jacket that he tells Sam is made from real baby seal. He has also brought his guitar so he can play her a song later. He is awesome.
Michael the soccer player is next. Sam thinks he’ll have a good body.
Richie the abseiler inadvertently makes Sam feel bad about changing from blonde to brunette. He also says ‘cool bananas’ at least five times.
The men all mingle inside and are soon making fun of Alex. One of them calls him Popeye, and another teases him about his accent.
‘I didn’t even say any posh words,’ he says defensively.
‘Yeah but you still sound like Shakespeare,’ they tell him.
Then it’s Alex’s turn to analyse the competition. He finds the three Davids particularly interesting.
To summarise: Dave is bogan, Davey is annoying, and David is…. well… David.
‘David seems to like his moisturising products,’ Alex points out.
One of the other guys agrees, saying how soft David’s hands are.
‘Sometimes I feel like I think too much,’ David says. ‘But I don’t,’ he quickly adds.
I’m glad we cleared that up.
David is not often threatened by people, but he is by Michael. Apparently it’s the whole soccer player thing.
Osher interrupts the gathering to explain the rules of the competition. You know, just in case they’ve been living under a rock since 2002. Richie isn’t paying attention though because he is star-struck by Osher’s presence.
Sam enters the room and gives a little speech about how excited she is. She tears up and berates herself for getting emotional so soon. Drew tells us that he just wanted to go over and give her a little hug. Aw.
It’s time to get down to the nitty gritty and meet these boys properly. The guys discuss how they will conduct themselves. Someone suggests fighting to the death. Another recommends Mortal Kombat. In the end, they agree to adhere by the Bro Code.
Plumber Dave gets the first one-on-one time with Sam, and Model David is already wanting to interrupt, despite rule number one of the Bro Code being that you don’t interrupt another bro.
Sam asks Dave to tell him a funny story about plumbing. But maybe he saw how well that turned out for “Anal Glands” Laura. ‘I don’t think you’d want to touch me if I told you,’ he laughs.
David mutters something about the other guys being pussies and explains that he’s going to swoop in if Dave takes longer than 15 minutes with Sam.
Dave tells Sam that his parents have been together for 35 years. Sam LOVES this. She also loves that Dave’s dad can’t give any advice on relationships because he always just thinks his wife is the best thing ever.
At the end of their exchange, Dave agrees that Sam is a ‘crackin’ sort’.
David decides he’s going in. The other guys are up in arms that Bro Code is already being broken.
But they needn’t have worried about him getting ahead. David sits down and tells Sam that his future wife will be lucky because she will automatically get a European passport thanks to his Polish heritage.
‘Add that to the relationship CV,’ Sam jokes.
‘I didn’t ask to be a model,’ he says. ‘It just kind of came to me.’
He then tries to explain that there’s more to him than being a model, except he won’t stop talking about modelling.
‘I went to Milan. And then Tokyo. Oh, and then Osaka…’
Sam looks like she might doze off.
She eventually escapes back inside and remarks how much more chilled it is with a room full of guys rather than the bitch-fest she had to endure last year.
She then steals some alone time with Michael. Sam has dated athletes before, and is naturally worried about his intentions. Michael admits that he’s never found the right person and that timing has never been ideal with previous relationships. But now he’s ready to settle down.
He also says that he’s really warmed to the other guys and that he’ll be happy to have them all as best friends if Sam doesn’t want them.
Is it just me, or was that an odd thing to say?
David is fretting over Michael again. He also doesn’t take kindly to Michael joking about moisturiser.
Will sings his song for Sam. It is really cute and funny and a bit Tim Minchin-y.
Davey wants to sneak in next, but Kayne beats him to it. He mentions he’s from Perth and unfortunately reminds Sam that Blake was also from Perth. He then decides to impress Sam with a 20 second headstand, only he didn’t count on his suit being so tight.
He also didn’t count on a bunch of the guys coming over to watch because they want to talk to Sam as well. He lasts a whole 1.5 seconds before tipping over.
As he picks himself up off the ground, Davey is making himself comfortable in his recently vacated seat. #fail
‘Tell me the three words that your friends would use to describe you,’ Sam asks Davey.
‘Dead set legend,’ he replies.
Sam bursts out laughing. I can’t tell if Davey was being serious, but after seeing Sam’s reaction, he acts like he was joking all along.
He then tells her how he’s had a string of bad relationships and his nickname (another one?) is GG for Girlfriend Guy. He likes to think he’s too nice, but Sam wonders if he’s a player. I think she might be right.
‘Tell me your pick-up line,’ she demands.
‘Smile if I can kiss you,’ he answers.
This is Sam’s face:
Alex is inside, lamenting the fact that he doesn’t think Sam is going to pull him aside for a chat, when lo and behold, she appears and asks him to go hang out.
David tells him he has 10 minutes before he’s going to barge in.
Alex apparently came to Oz with a girl but it didn’t work out. So now he’s rebuilt his life and ready for love.
Sam complains about the lack of guys in Sydney who want to commit. Alex tells her that she shouldn’t worry about that with him.
Davey has a bit of a meltdown and talks about leaving because he can’t compete with everyone. But then he doesn’t actually leave.
Richie makes light of the fact that he said ‘cool bananas’ way too many times during his introductory chat with Sam. And then Shane gets a few seconds of screen time where I think he looked at Sam’s forehead the entire time.
Sam saves her chat with Sasha for last. He does seem like a nice guy, but Sam can barely string a sentence together. She interprets this as a good thing, and runs inside to retrieve a rose. Sasha is genuinely surprised and happy.
And in what you will only hear on an Australian Bachelor show, the guys all yell out #devo! (And no they are not referring to the band famous for the catchy tune Whip It).
‘Can you go and chat to Sam again so I can look good?’ Drew asks Davey. It takes Davey a second to process the fact that he’s been insulted, but he takes it all in good fun.
David sits inside by himself brooding in an armchair. ‘Sam will come and get me if she wants to chat,’ he says to the air.
Meanwhile, the other guys are all outside bonding over shots. This is the friendliest bunch of dudes I have ever seen on a reality show. I have to say I’m a bit proud.
Suddenly, it’s the rose ceremony. Sasha has his rose already, and Osher announces that two guys will be leaving tonight.
Roses go to:
- Drew (who is hopeful that the owl bought him an extra week or two)
- Plumber Dave
David is musing that he’s probably going to get a rose, because in the modelling world when he’s only up against 13 other guys, his chances of success are usually pretty good)
- David! (phew for him)
Someone else muses about not wanting to go home on the first night because it’s like lining up for the best roller coaster ever and then finding out you’re one inch too short for the ride.
- Musician Will (the guys all give him a high five)
Electric Skateboard Shane and Surrendering Luke are sent home.
And we’re off to a cracker of a start with the first ever Aussie Bachelorette. And if the previews are anything to go by, they’ve allocated way more budget to Girl Sam than they did Boy Sam. There are helicopters, planes, skydiving, white water rafting, skiing and lots of walking arm in arm in picturesque fields with various men.
The show ends with Sam uttering a breathless ‘I love you so much’.
Ooh. What could it all mean? We only have four and half weeks left to find out!