(Photo used by permission of Wikimedia Commons)

The 21st season of “The Bachelor” began on Jan. 2 and will end on March 13. After nine seasons of watching the show, freshman Jackson Margolis has become an expert at predicting the winner. This is part two of a three-part series.

After week one, the next five weeks follow a similar three-date format that involves one or two one-on-ones, one or two group dates, and sometimes a two-on-one.

These one-on-ones almost always follow one of two different patterns.

A: The bachelor and one contestant go to the city, buy some things, talk about how much they are enjoying themselves and then go sit at a table for dinner and talk. (Ironically, at “dinner” they never eat their gorgeous-looking meal. I would bet that ABC has wasted thousands of dollars on gourmet meals.)

Lastly, they dance in front of a performing band that no one has ever heard of. However, the cast of “The Bachelor” does a really good job of pretending that this band is a big deal.

If, as they say on “The Bachelor,” “We have strong chemistry,” the bachelor will give a rose to the contestant. This guarantees the woman’s survival until the next episode.

B: The bachelor and one contestant do a thrilling activity or ride a helicopter. They will say how much they are enjoying themselves and then go sit at a table for dinner and talk. Lastly, they dance in front of a performing band.

Group dates involve the bachelor and a group of women doing a competitive activity and then sitting down for individual conversations. After that, the bachelor hands out the “group date rose.” The winner of this rose then gets some special time with the bachelor.

The two-on-ones are exactly what they sound like. The bachelor goes on a date with two women and at the end eliminates one and gives a rose to the other.

Usually after he sends home one contestant on a two-on-one, they show her sitting alone and crying for about five minutes. They are then dramatically left and are forced to watch the receiver of the rose ride off with the bachelor into the sunset.

There are three ways to predict who moves on from week to week. The first way is by watching the preview clips multiple times, since editors are way more revealing than they intend to be.

Clips are shown of the bachelor obviously on a one-on-one with a specific girl.

Sometimes, the editors think that they are being tricky when they show a clip of a girl that was on the group date alone with the bachelor. However, for viewers that have watched this show for awhile, it becomes clear that she is the winner of the group date rose.

Another way to predict is during the rose ceremonies. Although it seems a little late, I find this the best way of figuring out who is going to make the next round right before it is announced (it drives my mom crazy.)

Keep in mind this is not always the case, but these patterns are definitely prominent.

During the rose ceremonies different contestants make voiceover comments about what they think is going to happen.

These women are either about to be on the chopping block or are just plain on it.

If the rose ceremony is midway through, and one of the voiceovers is lasting a really long time and then there is a sudden pause in the music, then the contestant with the long voiceover almost always receives a rose then.

If not, this contestant will most likely be eliminated or receive the final rose.

During the rose ceremony the viewer sees short clips of the girls who have not received roses.

The last girl that is shown before a name is called is almost never called on that time. So for the final rose, it is pretty obvious that the last face shown is out.

The last method wasn’t as reliable until the more recent seasons.

Recently, the editors have been trying to trick the viewers in the previews. A good rule to use while watching the previews is to expect all of the clips to be the most dramatic and shocking parts of the episode.

The editors are trying to drag viewers in without giving too much away.

For example, when you see a preview that involves an argument with a front runner, the bachelor sending an invisible contestant home and tears, the editors have planted seeds in your head.

The contestant in the argument is not the one going home. If so, they wouldn’t have shown that to you because it would have been giving too much away.

In the next segment, Jackson discusses weeks 8-10, when the contestants begin to go on dates and the field gets narrowed down from seven to one.

By Jackson Margolis

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