We apologists have always been staunch defenders of Bentley. Normally, that means we rationalize his “bad” behavior and tell you why he’s not actually as bad as he seems on The Bachelorette. To all our readers, we only have one thing to say. We’re sorry, we screwed up.
Not only is Bentley not a bad guy, but it turns out that he is actually a pretty good guy. Now normally, we at the Apologists like to create our own content. But in this case, we are pulling a Huff Po and gathering together some statements about Bentley from around the web. Check them out:
I don’t think Bentley is a total asshole…I just think he liked the camera and was doing whatever…Bentley, he was just kind of like, “Hey, you know what? I think I’m going to leave…”There’s no doubt in my mind that he missed his daughter, but I think it sounds cool or something to maybe say, “Yeah, I’m using my daughter thing, but it’s really not the case….”I have a feeling that I’ll be in touch with Bentley.
I really liked Bentley … he seemed genuine. He talked about his daughter all the time, so I really thought that his missing her … and then to see all this stuff on the show was a bit of a surprise. Maybe the truth is somewhere in the middle, but at least in my experience of Bentley, he was a good guy. I like him.
“He’s a really good father, he’s really involved. They’ve got a really great relationship. He adores her. I’d say he’s a really good father,” she explained. As for their marriage, Suzette told Billy and Kit, “It didn’t work out, he’s got a lot of great qualities, it just wasn’t right with us.”
Courtesy of a fellow blogger: Today I got an e-mail from a Bachelorette insider (whose true identity I can neither confirm or deny, though they did sound very much “in the know”) to tell me that he’s been getting a kick out of my recaps so far this season. He also made an argument that Bentley is actually a fairly decent dude – “funny, chill, definitely competitive, but not the asshole the show’s making him out to be. They’re murdering the guy in editing!”
It’s important to remember that these varied characters have every incentive to take shots at him, but neither The Mask, That one dude, nor The Ex, nor the Anonymous Contestant were willing to throw Bentley under the bus. When all is said and done, Bentley critics will no doubt cross over to our side, and when they do, we will extend to them an olive branch (or at least a lock of Bentley’s luscious hair).
We Apologists find ourselves frequently responding to comments with what should be common knowledge. The viewers with a naïve take on relationships are upset with Bentley lying to Ashley (all the time), but especially when he lied about why he was leaving the show. People have said, “Bentley should have told the truth about why he was leaving” and they had a problem with him saying, “Let’s not call it a period. Let’s call it dot dot dot.’ was totally uncalled for.”
The apologists have pity for people that make these sorts of comments (and who are about to read this post). They have likely been on the receiving end of a lie that bookended their relationship. As all smart, cool, and incredibly good-looking people know, everyone lies when they dump someone. It’s called a “soft dump,” and it’s actually one of the few aspects of reality that The Bachelorette has managed to capture. Yes, Bentley did lie instead of telling Ashley the truth, but he did this for the same reason that all smart, cool, and incredibly good-looking people do—so that we don’t have to deal with all your drama.
People lie when they know they are going to rip someone’s heart out. Seinfeld has made millions on this “soft dump” concept. For those of you that have never been dumped, this will be a great educational tool for you. Get the Seinfeld seasons and follow the core plots of nearly every episode where Jerry finds a reason to dump someone. Whether it was a two faced girl, Annoying Laugh, Man Hands, or talking belly button—Jerry made millions on the humor behind the reality of the “soft dump”. People dump people and don’t ever tell them why.
Several of you are just now realizing you may have been soft dumped when your last boyfriend said, “It’s not you, it’s me.” The truth he did not tell you was, “It’s totally you, and I just realized ‘you’re personality does not make up for your looks.’” Or when he said, “Can we still be friends?” What he meant was, “I don’t want to hang out with you, but please don’t be a stalker and try and kill me. You give me that vibe.” People have dumped you because you are annoying, overweight, underweight, unattractive or some combination or derivative thereof. Furthermore, they probably lied and soft dumped you to avoid hurting you.
The very nature of the soft dump leaves open the opportunity for the future (even though there never is a future). Alternatively to “dot dot dot” Bentley could have just said, “I’m not digging you.” But this never happens in reality. Bentley is the real deal, raw, and unedited (well, probably heavily edited but you get the picture). We dig him.
Philosophers like to start with fundamental questions. What is real, and how do we know it? On most commentary surrounding the Bachelorette, there is a lot of talk about Bentley being “cast” as the villain this season. This word, “cast” has always been interesting. Someone gets cast to play a part or role in a film or play. For example, there is the hero, the love interest, the sidekick, the clown, and, and of course the villain. Why is cast so interesting? Because it is inconsistent with the idea of “reality.” Being cast to play a role in real life is a contradiction, and a Reality TV Villain is an oxymoron. Kind of like Jumbo Shrimp, Army Intelligence, or Honest Politician. What many people do not realize of course about “reality” TV is that it is highly staged, planned, choreographed, and scripted. There are several reasons for this: (1) actual reality would be just too unwieldy involving too much uncertainty, (2) viewers supposedly want “heightened” real or drama (3) most of what people say is boring, and documentaries are really boring. What’s the evidence that the Bachelorette isn’t real? Well, how about the music that plays in the background each time you meet a character. Pleasant, cheerful music means we are supposed to like the character…err contestant…and root for him (J.P., Ben F.). Dark, foreboding music means we are supposed to dislike or distrust the contestant (really just Bentley this season), and silly music means that the contestant is the clown we are supposed to laugh at (the masked man, Drunk Tim, and to a lesser extent, William). The producers do the same thing with camera time comments and interactions with Ashley that they choose to show viewers. Here’s an excerpt from Reality Steve about Bentley:
“This show is supposed to find love for Ashley, and are supposed to cast guys that are wanting to be there for her and hopefully to fall in love, right? That’s the premise of the show. Sure, we know not every guy is REALLY there for that, but just the idea behind it is supposed to be legit. Well, they’ve known since the minute that Bentley stepped foot on the show, and hell probably even back to when they did his hometown video and the guy was talking about Emily, they knew he wasn’t into Ashley. He knew it and they knew it, yet they still cast him. It’s the shows fault, and Bentleys fault. Let’s say Bentley truly and honestly didn’t know that Ashley was the “Bachelorette” and the show lied to him the whole time telling him it was Emily (Remember, they started filming the night after Brad’s finale aired, so the latest he would’ve known for sure it was Ashley was the night before). So let’s say he didn’t watch “Jimmy Kimmel” the night before, and had no clue it was Ashley until he stepped out of the limo. Then why not just eliminate himself on the first night? Simple question that Chris Harrison, Mike Fleiss, ABC, Next Entertainment, and Warner Horizon will never answer: If Bentley never liked Ashley, why was he cast? They knew what they were doing the whole time because they know what the guy was saying about her in his ITM’s (In the Moment Interviews).”
In other words, Bentley’s on the show, so that the show will have a villain, so that it will be more interesting, so that you will watch it, so that it will get high ratings. The other contestants are just too plain vanilla to be able to pull off that role. So everyone needs to stop hating on Bentley. You may not like the role for which Bentley was cast, but that doesn’t mean you hate Bentley. That’s like saying you hate Anthony Hopkins for playing Hannibal Lecter. Plus, sexy villains like Bentley are way better than creepy villains.
So Bachelorette Ashley made it on the cover of People Magazine this week. Not surprisingly, it’s an interview with her about being on the show, and we get to hear all about the Comedy Club roast and her insecurities. Also not surprisingly, the article relentlessly castigates Bentley, portraying him as the biggest jerk that has ever been on the show.
Some gems from the article:
- “During the season’s first three episodes, he intentionally led her on, all the while giddily confessing in his one-on-one camera interviews that ‘I don’t care about Ashley at all.”
- “Looking back months later, Ashley finds that what hurts most is learning of his deception.”
- Producer Mike Fleiss, “We always try to tell an honest story.”
- And the real kicker: “ABC declined to make Bentley available for an interview.”
Seriously People Magazine? You are supposed to be more ‘fair and balanced’ than those other gossip rags. Wonder if Ashley would have made it on your cover if ratings hadn’t spiked (thanks Bentley, for providing the drama) or if everyone didn’t feel so sorry for Ashley (thanks again Bentley, for being so darn irresistible to her).
So Ashley Feels So Betrayed by all this. You know who else feels betrayed?
They are deprived of seeing Bentley, by far the most interesting contestant, on the show for the rest of the season. Wondering if the show will be lame without him? Don’t. It will
We don’t get to see our guy, nor do we even get to hear his side of the story (“ABC declined to make Bentley available for an interview.”) Instead, we get to watch a bunch of mannequins, the big league chew guy, Glambert, Disney’s Hercules, a few celebrity look-a-likes, and the Geico Cavemen pretending to be romantic. It sounds almost as fun as going to the dentist. Can’t wait for next week!
In the last three weeks Bentley Williams has been called every derogatory name in the book, and people have bought into the drama. What The Bachelorette/Bachelor series hopes you never realize is that Bentley is actually the classiest guy from any season on both franchises.
To the women, we ask: If you were The Bachelorette, who would you prefer as a contestant? Would you rather date a guy twice (with ~2hrs of alone time) like Bentley, who feigns interest in you, leads you to kiss him, and maybe even breaks your hear? Or would you prefer to date a guy for 2 months, who has somewhat confused feelings about you. This other guy will capture your heart, sleep with you, and also with two to five other contestants. Days later, he will toss you to the curb in a final rose ceremony so he can pick the other girl he slept with.
Ask yourself—is a relationship with Bentley better than every single “fantasy suite” date with any guy on The Bachelor? You don’t have to be a Bentley Apologist to answer–YES! The betrayal we see every season of the series confirms this narrative. Evidently, each Bachelor sleeps with an average of three girls per season. You don’t have to go far on Google to find the creator of the show bragging (vicariously) that some sleep with as many as 5 girls on the show (Way to go, nice guy Bob Guiney)
Bentley did something no other guy has ever done on the show. He passed on all this garbage, said goodbye to the show, and kept Ashley from deeper heartbreak. People can hate what he says (even if the edits are true), but they can’t deny that taking himself out of the game when Ashley thinks he is “the one” is classier than any helicopter date or fancy dinner before a final rose ceremony. Yes Bentley, I’d rather have you date my daughter over any of those slime balls that the show typically holds up on a pedestal.
How about the producers and Chris Harrison? Is Bentley really the worst contestant ever? On an episode where William publicly humiliates Ashley in front of a live audience, the producers still manage to make it look insignificant next to Bentley. For savvy viewers, this is a pure ratings ploy created by out of context answers to unrelated questions. Sensational editing has made a mountain out of a molehill with Bentley on the show. Only in Hollywood would a guy who passes on all this garbage and forgoes a free vacation be so vilified, while a Bachelor that sleeps with all the contestants before picking “the one” gets held up on a pedestal as an example of a great catch.
Why did Ashley like Bentley so much when people repeatedly warned her about him? Maybe because the producers don’t want to show us any glimpse of Bentley that might be inconsistent with the villain they cast him as. But this is the side that Ashley loved, the Bentley that is kind and considerate. We’re betting that that is the Real Bentley.
Everyone is making a big deal out of the fact that Bentley said he prefers Emily Maynard to Ashley Hebert. Guess what, so does Brad Womack (he picked her), so do viewers (they love her), and so does ABC (they approached her about doing the show first). That means that it is a virtual statistical impossibility that Bentley is the only contestant that prefers someone over Ashley. He’s just the only one that has come right out and said it.
So what does Emily think about Bentley? Her initial reaction was similar to Ashley’s – she said he was handsome and charming. Then she “got to know him” through the show. In other words, she caved to the court of public opinion, became a puppet to the producers, and jumped on Chris Harrison’s Bentley-is-a-villain bandwagon. She could learn a thing or two from contrarian Bentley (or the Apologists). Have the courage to be different!
But be warned Emily. You seem like a super nice girl and are clearly gorgeous. People tend to like you (Bentley Apologists included). But if you don’t start voicing your own opinions, everyone will lose interest quickly, and you will fade from our cultural memory. “A Rose for Emily” can either evoke the most beautiful contestant in the history of the Bachelor or a debutante’s necrophilia. Your choice.
The Apologists have been critical of some people’s claims that Bentley went on The Bachelorette for “the wrong reasons.” However, it seems as if the stories about him going on show to promote his business career may actually have had some merit. In an upcoming press release, the prestigious investment bank is slated to announce the promotion of Bentley Williams to co-CEO. It is widely believed that he is being groomed to eventually lead the bank, which has struggled to shake its negative image in the wake of the financial crisis. According to current CEO, Lloyd Blankfein, “I am honored to share the CEO title with Bentley. The guy really showed us what he’s made of on The Bachelorette. He’s a sharp dresser and one of the few people with better hair than me.” Although we totally have egg on our face, we are so excited for Bentley. It’s so great that the producers picked you for this reality show so you can promote your business career at Goldman Sachs. If you can’t give Ashley your heart, maybe you can at least give her a great deal on some mortgage-backed securities.