Men go onto The Bachelorette to find love. In theory.
To some degree, everyone who appears on The Bachelorette (or any competitive reality show of similar ilk) is there to get famous. Even The Bachelorette contestants that I couldn't find IMDB pages or SoundCloud accounts for were ruthlessly promoting the show and their presence on it on every social media platform available to them. Contestant Alex Woytkiw, for example, seems to be a US Marine, as he claims in the show, but in the last month has posted nearly a dozen professionally shot photographs of himself on his Instagram. He also hosts The Bachelorette viewing parties in a California sports bar with several of the other contestants.
the name of the game is lying
That's all fine, if a little tacky — being on TV is fun! But what about the perennial accusation that some guys just "aren't there for the right reasons," i.e., to fall in love? It's a claim that gets thrown around each Bachelorette mansion with abandon, but the specific accusations are edited out by producers who are wary of the show's illusion — that a modern princess will find her singularly devoted prince charming — being like glass slippers beneath a jib crane.
Certainly savvy media consumers know that there's at least some chicanery going on, but if the people at home were told that more than half of the cast was pursuing a career in acting, modeling, or singing, there'd be no show. The name of the game — the champagne-drenched, helicopter-soundtracked, $100,000-diamond-encrusted game — is romance.
Actually, the name of the game is lying.
Ali Zahiri (eliminated)
Claimed profession: Bartender
Concealed ambition: Movie star / darling of literature
Ali's occupation was listed in his ABC biography as "bartender," but as it turns out, he's actually an aspiring actor! His credits include a small role in the 2015 film San Andreas Quake (not to be confused with the 2015 film San Andreas); a part in the web series "Breaking Rad," which was made by some of James Franco's UCLA film students; and a starring role in the crowd-funded Los Angeles production of The Penis Chronicles, which seems to be a less popular incarnation of The Vagina Monologues. Ali completed sketch comedy training with the Upright Citizens Brigade and the Groundlings, and took a Meisner Technique class taught by James Franco's acting mentor Brian Lally.
Ali has also been published in a handful of literary magazines, including Rusty Nail Magazine and Orange Quarterly. My favorite piece of his writing is called "How Sex Happens for Men and Sometimes for Women," and it begins, "What's on a woman's mind? I have no clue. If I did I would be the most powerful man in the world, I'd be like the Genghis Khan of pussy." I think that second comma is meant to be a semicolon.
Brandon Howell (eliminated)
Claimed profession: Hipster
Concealed ambition: Movie star / jeans model
Brandon Howell received a lot of attention before this season of The Bachelorette even started, because his occupation was listed as "hipster." Some people were confused as to how that could be a job. "That's not a job!" they said. Well, lucky for Brandon, that is not his job. Brandon is an actor and model.
He played "Randy" in the 2012 film Found, which is about a young boy figuring out that his older brother is a serial killer. He also played "Man by the Pool" in a short film curiously named Louis Vuitton: LA is a Man. Below, you can watch a fake Diesel ad that he made last year, perhaps hoping it would result in a job.
(Are you crying yet?)
Claimed profession: Medical sales
Concealed ambition: None (I think), but he should really focus on Vine
Okay, I don't think that Chase McNary (medical sales rep!) is trying to get famous, but in the process of giving him a thorough internet background check I uncovered some truly fascinating gems and I just need to share them.
You're not a fame-monger Chase, but your Vine account is incredible and you could do a really good self-referential bro comedy routine if you wanted.
Claimed profession: Male model
Concealed ambition: N/A
Daniel listed his occupation as "male model" from the get-go, so ultimately I respect him the most. Kind of.
Claimed profession: Commercial banker
Concealed ambition: To own three guitars
"Commercial banker" Derek Peth (or Dire Straits or Matt Nathanson) everybody!!!
Claimed profession: Firefighter
Concealed ambition: Model (again!)
Grant is outwardly a "firefighter" on The Bachelorette, but IRL he is a model, too. His biography on modelmayhem.com was updated in early May to state that he had taken a five-year break from modeling and recently "decided to get back into the industry." I wonder what changed? I assume it has nothing to do with the fact that he was about to appear on TV, looking for love.
Claimed profession: Boxing club owner
Concealed ambition: Television and film actor, person whose face gets remembered
James F (or, as many have remarked, "Who??") included in his official Bachelorette biography that he is a "boxing club owner." That’s true, and the gym’s motto is "Earn Yours," which only made me whimper a little bit. However, he’s also an aspiring actor (I’m starting to feel like every living person is secretly trying to be an actor or a model and I’m the only person who isn’t hot enough for such a lovely, sneaky dream). I am happy to report on James F’s behalf that he recently played a reporter on the now-canceled television program Nashville.
He also played "Douchey Guy #2" on Gratuity Not Included, appeared in a guest role on Swamp Murders, and will star in the 2016 film Silver Twins which doesn’t have a plot summary available anywhere but does have the tagline "Where Judaism and Christianity Meet," and some sample clips.
Claimed profession: Singer-songwriter
Concealed ambition: Pest control
James T is an interesting case because his listed occupation is "singer-songwriter," but it appears that his main source of income is actually working as a sales representative at ABC Home & Commercial Services (a pest and rodent control company) in Marietta, Georgia. Part of me suspects that the producers of the show encouraged him to go the singer-songwriter route just because it’s hilarious that his name is James Taylor and he can’t stop whipping out a guitar that he calls his "second baby." (What is his first baby? Is that JoJo? If so, hell no.)
In any case, James T(aylor) uploaded a new single to his SoundCloud account on Tuesday night. It certainly sounds like a song written by a sales rep at a pest control company.
Claimed profession: Former football player
Concealed ambition: Movie musicals
Jordan is a former professional quarterback and the younger brother of star Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Much has been made of this fact, with the show’s producers conspiring to make every group date perfectly suited to Jordan’s "talents" and Chad helpfully pointing out "you’ve done nothing with your life but throw a piece of leather." I loved this burn, but it turned out to be not exactly true.
Jordan’s Wikipedia page (lol) states that he was signed to Canadian football team the BC Lions in October of 2014 but quit "abruptly" in April of 2015 to pursue a career in television. Interesting. That doesn’t seem to have gone well for Jordan (until now — thanks JoJo!), but he did score a small part in Pitch Perfect 2, a tiny film you may have heard of! He appeared in one of the "riff-off" scenes featuring the Green Bay Packers.
Claimed profession: War veteran
Concealed ambition: Country music king of street festivals
Luke is a "war veteran" professionally. Interesting! Actually he is an aspiring country music singer. I know, I’m floored, too. Mainly because I think Luke looks like a smaller but even more murder-y version of Chad (who doesn’t have an entry in this article because, despite his many other flaws, he has no transparent show biz aspirations).
Luke can be booked for weddings, birthday parties, street festivals, corporate functions, and graduation parties, according to his Gig Masters page. I can only find two of his songs on the internet and they’re under a YouTube account called "lukepell22," so maybe that’s why he so badly needs JoJo’s help with getting famous.
Claimed profession: Former competitive swimmer
Concealed ambition: Model
I was suspicious of "former competitive swimmer" Robby Hayes for two reasons: 1) that’s not a job!! Enough of that trick, ABC! 2) His Snapchat name is "roberhunter89" which led me to suspect that he is related to up-and-coming country singer Hunter Hayes. I realize that’s sort of an illogical conclusion, but at this point I would believe anything. Do you remember earlier when someone was in THE PENIS CHRONICLES?! Anyway, Robby isn’t a country singer. But he is a model. I’ve never been more deeply relieved and exhausted by the discovery that someone is a model.
Claimed profession: Barber
Concealed ambition: Calvin Harris
"Barber" Vinny admitted in his bio for The Bachelorette that he had bleached his tips once and "looked like Timberlake — boy-band style," but did not admit that he mainly goes by the name DJ Vinsane. The intro on all of his songs is "DJ Vinsane, get this guy a straight jacket." You can listen to his track "I Just Came," below. It is hard to get through.
Claimed profession: Radio DJ
Concealed ambition: To find love
Wells is a radio DJ and identifies himself as such. He is great and I’m furious that he isn’t getting more screen time. Just look at this face!
Will Haduch (eliminated)
Claimed profession: Civil engineer
Concealed ambition: British pop star
Will. Will, Will, Will. Will, who said "I WILL accept this rose," attempting to make a pun off of his own name and Will, who lives on a houseboat in the Hudson River. Will is a "civil engineer," but Will is also a musician named "Thrills Wilson." Oh, Thrills. His music video for "Steal Your Girl," filmed in a sex shop in the West Village, and published the day before The Bachelorette premiered, is an odd attempt at Brit pop from someone who... lives in a river in New Jersey.
Last week, after JoJo sent Will home, Thrills published another video, titled "Ode to My Thirst Queens." I can’t recommend it highly enough. There are several jokes about how Will / Thrills’ [PANCAKES] won’t fit in some girl’s mouth. (Note: my editor tells me this is a reference to a Vince Vaughn movie called Unfinished Business. I can't really articulate how this knowledge made me feel, other than that I now have unfinished business with Will.)
Poor JoJo. Looking for love in all the wrong places. Looking for love in too many faces. Searching their eyes, looking for traces... hoping to find a friend and a lover.
She won't, though.