|I went to "The Bachelorette" and all I got was this t-shirt :D|
I've lived in LA for 5 years and I'd NEVER been to the taping of a show!! Well, I'm happy to say that, as of yesterday...that statement is no longer true!! :)
Preston actually runs a company that builds sets for television shows. Most of the time...this isn't really all that great. Television shows tend to be rather demanding. Television shows want you to work 15 hour days and weekends and holidays. Every now and again (ok---well, so far...just this once), television shows will give you tickets to see the live taping of "The Bachelorette: The Men Tell All"!!
I've been a faithful fan of "The Bachelor/Bachelorette" franchise for some time. It's such silly TV!! Over the years, I've gotten together with a revolving group of my friends on Monday nights to tune in for the latest drama. We make dinner...usually potluck style...drink wine and yell at the television :D It's great fun!!
For anyone that doesn't watch the show (and thus likely lives under a rock!! JK Julie and Naomi;)), the typical timeline goes something like this:
The Bachelor/Bachlorette meets 25 women/men who stay up all night and drink too much and make total fools of themselves in an effort to catch the attention of the object of affection.
An unlucky few go home that first night and then the rest slowly trickle away amongst grandiose 'one on one' dates, group dates and 'two on one' dates. (ONE STAYS...ONE GOES). These dates take place all over the world and involve more helicopter rides than one can count. Every single thing that happens on the show is 'the MOST dramatic EVER' or 'the MOST shocking EVER', but usually it's just another ride in a helicopter ;)
Anyway, the Bachelor/Bachelorette whittles down this group and this is when things get really interesting...and heartbreaking. As a viewer of this show, it seems pretty obvious that things are at least a little bit (if not a lot a bit ;) ) scripted. That said, I think a lot of the feelings are real. It can be quite sad and I'm not really sure why anyone would subject themselves to either a) being the one that has to choose between 2 women/men or b) date and possibly fall in love with someone that is simultaneously dating 10 other people....all the while having every action filmed.
Finally, the Bachelor/Bachelorette has 4 women/men left and everyone visits the hometown of these women/men on 'the hometown dates'. After meeting the families of the contestants...the B/B (this is getting ridic) rips out one of their hearts and tells them to go back home into the arms of the family they just left.
The remaining 3 gallivant around tropical islands until just 2 are left (more tears) and then the B/B chooses one and there's a proposal. More often than not...this doesn't stick. Amazingly, some HAVE.
Right around the time of the 'hometown dates', the show airs a special called "The Men/Women Tell All". This show goes behind the scenes to spill all the dirt with firsthand accounts from those that were not given a rose (read: got kicked to the curb). This is what we got tickets to yesterday!!
Unfortunately, I only got 2 tickets...so just my friend Meredith and I got to go. We arrived around 11 am to board the shuttle, which left at 1145 (couldn't be late!!). We were taken to a sound stage near Hollywood. The first thing we did was use the restroom (this show knows women!!). Next, we went into a big sound stage and signed our life away by promising NOT to mention a THING that was said or done on the show!! We were offered a small subway sandwich and a bottle of water in exchange. :D And then we sat there. For almost 2 hours.
Meredith and I chatted a lot with the girls with whom we had sat with on the shuttle. One of them was practically a professional audience member!! haha!! Finally, we were selectively herded onto the set of the show. It was beautiful...with a lot of drapery, flowers, candles, and purple lighting. Well done Pres ;) I believe this is ok to tell because every Bachelor set looks like this. *Chris Harrison-PLEASE don't sue me for five million dollars!!
The woman in charge tried to sit us in a section right behind the men (from the show), but our new friend insisted on another spot. FAIL!! If we'd gone where we had first been instructed...we would have been on camera the whole time!! But, instead...we were in a literal corner (NO ONE sits Baby in a corner!!). I don't think we'll ever be seen!! LOL. It's not really the reason we went, but I can't say that being on TV wouldn't have been exciting!! Who knows? Maybe there will be some surprising cut away shots of us.
We got to watch the episode that would be airing that night and then the taping began. They had us warm up with lots of clapping and smiling and practicing different facial expressions. Pretty funny :) And then we sat there...and sat there and sat there. All in all...I think we were in those chairs for 6 hours or so!! Thank God we brought snacks!! Meredith and I were stuffing hard boiled eggs into our mouths with every 30 second break in shooting!! Hehe!! Bathroom breaks were few and far between. It was absolutely FREEZING in there. We just sat and smiled and reacted and clapped and clapped and clapped for SIX hours. It was intense and a VERY long day. One thing I learned about myself is that I have no "WOOOO" voice. I can't hit that octave!! My woo is very broken and crackly. I feel terrible for the sound person who will have to edit out my struggling cries of excitement. AND I was RIGHT next to a mic!! hahah!!
We left around 830pm with sore bums, hoarse voices, tired cheeks, tingling hands, and empty stomachs. I could not WAIT to get back to the car and my cell phone!! We were not allowed to bring any electronics with us to the set. It's sad how difficult this was ;)
Overall, I'm glad we got to experience this. It was very cool to see how the show is taped and to see the 'stars' up close. Chris Harrison (the host of the show) was very funny and nice. We got to see quite a bit of drama and had some laughs. It was a verrrryyy long, but fun day!!
We rewarded ourselves for all of our hard work with a Cheesecake Factory feast at 10pm on the water in Marina Del Rey. Life in LA is good ;)
And now-since I couldn't take any pictures of the experience-I'll leave you with some pics of my super hot husband to be :D