I’ve been a loyal member of Bachelor Nation for longer than is psychologically recommended (according to my therapist). In fact, I’m so invested in them that I spend almost seven months out of every year chained to my TV for two hours on Monday nights, just to watch these people find love while simultaneously bringing dishonor to their family name. I then meticulously record this aesthetically-pleasing car crash in a weekly recap so that we can all remember that one time Chris Harrison had to explain to Colton which hole to put it in for posterity purposes. One could even argue that watching The Bachelor has been my longest relationship to date.
And, like any other toxic relationship in my life, I’ve put up with my fair share of bullsh*t. Getting rid of Jorge The Bartender on Bachelor in Paradise in favor of Wells, who is about as much a mixologist as I am a person with good credit? Fine. Letting Chris Harrison negotiate a new contract that allows him to speak seven words or less per episode, despite the fact that he is the glue that holds that insane asylum together? Also fine. Giving Nick Viall not one, not two, not three, but FOUR separate seasons to con the American public into thinking he could ever be a catch? Fine, fine, fine. But what I won’t stand for—what I absolutely refuse to allow—is Bachelor Nation infiltrating the lives of real celebs.
For those of you who haven’t been paying attention, recently there has been a number of former Bachelor contestants vying for the hearts of actual celebrities, like Tyler C and Gigi Hadid, Demi Lovato and Mike Johnson, and as of last week, potentially Nick Viall and Rachel Bilson. And these are just the most recent couplings!
When I first found out about Tyler C hooking up with Gigi Hadid, I was disappointed and a little upset. My friends, on the other hand, were ecstatic. “Good for Tyler!” They’d say. “He deserves only good things!” Look, I’m not going to pretend that watching 30 hours of TV footage of the man makes me an apt judge of his character, but I was inclined to agree. Good things? Sure. But going from dating a girl who names her zits and regularly butchers the English language to dating one of the highest-paid models in the world, who also happens to be an international superstar? Are you f*cking kidding me, Tyler?
Bottom line? I felt lied to. I had just spent weeks this summer watching Tyler profess his love for Hannah B, a girl who is the definition of “hot mess” in Urban Dictionary, only to find out that what he was really searching for in a partner was 108 pounds of hairspray and coconut water. Part of those feelings of betrayal came from the fact that these guys are supposed to be somewhat attainable. These are supposed to be guys who would theoretically be into us, the viewer (assuming we are under a size 4, have at least 10K followers on Instagram, and look professionally airbrushed at all times). AND GIGI F*CKING HADID IS NOT LIKE US, THE VIEWER, IS SHE TYLER C?!
Furthermore, I’ve always considered the stars of Bachelor Nation to be their own sad, demented sorority/fraternity, that real stars—people with certifiable talents and ambition that goes beyond which Instagram sponsorship will pay for their Revolve credit card—would look down upon. Bachelor contestants are willing to debase themselves on national television, wear chicken suits and cry about being seagulls instead of pigeons. Why would a person who has won Emmys for acting or hit the Billboard Hot 100 want to date a person whose bio can be summed up as “social media participant” or “former high school athlete”?
Take Mike Johnson and Demi Lovato, for instance. Do I love them both? Yes. Do I want both of them to be happy? Also, yes. But Demi is a rockstar, a huge advocate for mental health, and has a world-wide fanbase, while Mike… has a really great smile? Calls women “queens”? Seriously, what does this guy do for a living and is he really good enough for MY queen Demi? Their budding relationship feels mismatched and off-kilter. That’s not to say some relationships can’t be mismatched, but this feels like something more than that.
And for the most part, it’s the men of BachelorNation who are sliding into the DMs of A-list stars. You don’t see Bibiana hitting up Michael B. Jordan’s IG comments section with flirty emojis or Kristina Schulman going on dinner dates with Chace Crawford. Which brings me to the real reason I’m so offended by these recent couplings: why is this phenomenon so one-sided?
We’ve talked at length about how The Bachelor men dating A-listers won’t be great for the franchise. It already felt like a real suspension of reality that these conventionally attractive, mildly successful men weren’t able to find love in real life and that’s why they came on the show. Over the years, it’s felt like less of the contestants are actually there to find love with the lead and more of them are there to find fame and careers on Instagram. And now the female leads must contend with the likes of Demi Lovato and Gigi Hadid potentially sliding into the guys’ DMs post-production, apparently.
Aside from Lauren Bushnell’s recent engagement to country music singer Chris Lane, the majority of the ladies in Bachelor Nation are single or are dating in the Bachelor pool of potential suitors, but the men aren’t playing that game anymore. While Nick Viall serenades Summer Roberts on his podcast, Caelynn felt so desperate for a happy ending that she settled for a man who lives in his van.
More and more I watch this show and think, “man, she’s settling” and I’ve realized that’s not the kind of reality TV I want to watch anymore. This used to be a show about real people looking for love. Over time, that’s shifted into cosmetically enhanced, famous-adjacent people looking for love, and I was fine with that too. But I can’t stand for this new turn of events. I don’t watch The Bachelorette or Bachelor in Paradise to find out how a good looking dude from Florida somehow managed to bag a supermodel. I watch this show to root for the women, for them to find themselves and maybe find love too.
Hannah B set a new precedent for Bachelorettes: that we can be funny and messy and say the wrong things and STILL be desirable—still be wife material. But watching her men declare that’s what they want in a wife and then go out and date international superstars in the next breath is enraging and upsetting. If this is what the next generation of Bachelor looks like, then count me out.
Images: ABC; Giphy (2)
If you’re even mildly caught up on what goes on in Bachelor Nation, then you probably know that the latest trend is Bachelorette rejects hooking up with famous women. Wells and Sarah Hyland are engaged, Gigi and Tyler seem to be getting more and more serious, and now we have confirmation that Mike Johnson and Demi Lovato are hanging out. This is not a drill.
It’s too soon to know if this is going to be a serious relationship or just two hot people having a good time, but either way, I need to know everything ASAP. Here’s a timeline of what we know about Mike and Demi’s relationship so far, because it’s been quite the journey since earlier this summer.
June-July: Hannah’s Season
Demi Lovato wasted no time making her crush on Mike known to the world. She posted often about watching Hannah’s season of The Bachelorette, and singled Mike out as her favorite guy. Obviously things didn’t work out with Mike and Hannah, which is for the best as far as Demi is concerned.
August 19th: Mike’s Denial
A few weeks after Hannah’s season finished airing, Mike was still playing it cool about any potential involvement with Demi Lovato. On August 19th, he told People TV “We have not connected and we have not exchanged any freaky texts at all.” Boooooo. But like I said previously, because of Mike’s casting on Bachelor In Paradise, he really couldn’t have said anything at the time. We’ll probably never know if he was telling the truth about the lack of freaky texts, but given more recent events, it really doesn’t matter now.
September 5th: Flirting In The Comments
A couple weeks ago, Demi Lovato set the internet on fire when she posted an absolutely stunning picture with a caption about facing her fear of posting unedited photos. She got dozens of positive comments from celebrities, but the most important one was a thirsty little message from Mr. Mike Johnson himself. His comment was already amazing, but then DEMI RESPONDED.
After a summer of casually shipping them and wondering if anything might happen, this was the first time it started to feel real. There’s a big difference between Demi rooting for Mike on a reality show and her responding to his flirty comment on her picture. She has like 75 million followers, so she’s not just shouting out people at random.
September 13th: Dinner Date
After the IG comments, Mike and Demi low-key stayed on our radar, but there were other important things happening in the world. I wasn’t going to hold my breath for them to be seen in public together, but then IT HAPPENED. On Friday night, the dream was realized when Mike and Demi were spotted getting dinner together at LaScala in Beverly Hills.
I first got this information from a firsthand source in a private Facebook group, but I wasn’t allowed to break it because it’s against the rules of the group. But it wasn’t long before the information spread, and it was reported by every tabloid possible. Mike and Demi arrived together through a back entrance, stayed for a couple hours, and Demi was laughing the whole time. I don’t know for sure, but this doesn’t sound like the first time they were meeting.
September 14th: Sources Say
The day after their appearance together at dinner, sources came out of the woodwork to comment on the burgeoning relationship between Mike and Demi. This kind of thing always happens, and whether the sources are accurate or not, I can’t not pay attention to them. A source told People that Mike and Demi are “having fun and getting to know each other,” and that “they’ve been talking privately for a bit and hanging out.”
For a bit?? A BIT?? What does this mean? “A bit” is obviously not an exact unit of measurement, but this wording makes it sound like they’ve at least been talking for a couple weeks. If they’re following the Gigi and Tyler timeline, that means they’ll basically be living together by the end of this week. Love to see it!
Obviously, we’re keeping our eyes and ears open for further signs that Mike Johnson and Demi Lovato are going strong, so we’ll keep this updated as we know more. Demi deserves a normal relationship, and this is the one acceptable excuse for Mike not being the next Bachelor. Basically, I’m here for this.
September 29th: TMI, Mike
Things appear to still be going well for Mike and Demi, because Mike still can’t stop talking about her. This week, Mike went on Ben Higgins and Ashley Iaconetti’s Almost Famous podcast, and he didn’t shy away from talking about his connection with Demi. Mike said that he loves Demi’s tattoos, and then added that “she kisses really well.” Sorry, but ew. Trust me, I’m no prude, but there’s something weird about hearing a grown man talk about Demi Lovato being a good kisser.
Mike also added that Demi Lovato is the “aggressor,” which he finds “incredibly sexy.” So basically, Demi’s a top, which should come as a surprise to literally no one. Demi has some of the biggest dick energy around, and Mike just confirmed it. He also recently confirmed to E! News that Demi is the only person he’s talking to at the moment, so I feel like this couple isn’t going anywhere.
October 14th: Mike Shoots His Shot With… Keke Palmer?!
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Smh, so I guess these hoes ain’t loyal, because Mike asked Keke Palmer out on a date on live TV on an episode of Strahan, Sara & Keke (which I did not know was even a show). So this probably means things with Demi are cooling down for a bit, because it would be extremely stupid to publicly ask out one celebrity while you’re currently dating another celebrity. I have to believe Mike is not that stupid.
On top of that, on the same day, Mike spoke to UsWeekly about Demi, saying he’d “never kiss and tell” (even though he already did…) and wants to “keep it 100” with himself moving forward. He also told them, “I will say this, that Demi is amazing. I think that she’s a beautiful individual inside and out.” Okay, like, is that not exactly what you say about your ex who you’re on decent terms with and still looking to smash?? It obviously could genuinely mean they are still figuring things out, but combined with the Keke date, it doesn’t look too good for Mike and Demi. I guess, for all the upset over Bachelor guys dating famous women, many of these relationships don’t seem to have much staying power.
Images: ddlovato, brettsvergara, thebetchelor / Instagram
These days, it seems more and more like the norm for the top tier of Bachelorette rejects to start dating legitimately famous women. Wells Adams is now engaged to Sarah Hyland, and we’ve obviously all been following the saga of Tyler Cameron and Gigi Hadid. Is Mike Johnson, the fan-favorite from Hannah’s season, the next guy to start dating an A-lister? We’re keeping a close watch, because it seems like he’s getting closer and closer to Demi Lovato.
We’ve known for a while that Demi Lovato is a fan of all things Bachelor Nation, and during Hannah’s season, she often posted her commentary on her Instagram stories. She was obviously a big fan of Mike while he was still on The Bachelorette, saying early in the season that he should win, and at one point writing “Mike I accept your rose.” Honestly, Demi Lovato is every single one of us watching at home, and I really respect that. Except, of course, that Demi Lovato is not like every single one of us, because she has millions of followers and also millions of dollars.
At the After The Final Rose special for Hannah’s season, Demi Lovato was in the audience, and things seemed like they might actually be happening. When asked about hooking Demi up with Mike, Hannah told Entertainment Tonight “I definitely have the hookup for Demi, if she wants to be with Mike. I would give her my blessing.”
But despite the positive vibes from Hannah, and Demi’s apparent crush on Mike, he played down any chance that they might be seeing each other. Last month, he told People TV “We have not connected and we have not exchanged any freaky texts at all. No to both.” While Mike and I have, sadly, not exchanged any freaky texts either, he continued, saying “She would definitely be cool to reach out to, but neither one of us have reached out to each other. I think she’s sexy, she’s got a nice little booty on her and she has a good voice.”
Okay, I like Mike a lot, but I’m not a huge fan of his characterization of Demi. Of course she’s sexy, but “nice little booty” sends a shiver down my spine, and to casually just call Demi Lovato’s voice “good” feels like the understatement of the century. I would listen to her sing the phonebook. Mike, what are you bringing to the table that’s as impressive as Demi’s voice? I’ll wait.
But while we were kind of sad to hear that Mike and Demi weren’t a thing, we knew this was going to happen. Because Mike was going on this season of Paradise, there was no way he was going to cop to anything happening with Demi before his time on the show came to an end. Contractually, he could’ve gotten in a loot of trouble if he admitted to any freaky texts. Wouldn’t want to upset Chris Harrison!
But now that Mike’s time on Paradise has come to an end without a Neil Lane engagement ring in sight, he’s free to do whatever he wants. And by that, I mean that he’s free to be thirsty in the comments of Demi Lovato’s Instagram, and that’s just what he’s doing. Last night, Demi posted an absolutely fire photo of herself in a swimsuit (completely unretouched, bless up), and the internet caught her and Mike flirting in the comments.
Obviously, one comment on a picture isn’t confirmation that they’re hanging and banging. I mean, I used to comment on every single photo that Charlie Puth posted, and I’m confident he doesn’t know I exist. But Demi obviously does know that Mike exists, and I don’t see any reason why these two shouldn’t at least hang out once and see where it goes. If Mike’s not going to be The Bachelor, maybe this is even better?
Obviously, we’ll be paying close attention to whether there are more signs of something going on between Demi and Mike, and hopefully they make it as easy as Tyler and Gigi. I want paparazzi pics together at least three times a week, no less!
Images: Shutterstock; ddlovato, brettsvergara / Instagram