Many objectively strange elements to The Bachelor/Bachelorette franchise are now just generally accepted as the norm: fantasy suite nights, first impression roses, and two-on-one dates. But one of the most entertaining staples of the show are group dates on The Bachelor that go too far. There are so many reasons why these group dates get out of hand: they’re too risqué, too physically taxing, or just too out there. Furthermore, these group dates feature one Bachelor or Bachelorette with a handful of contestants all vying for attention from them. It’s a powder keg that almost always blows up in the most entertaining way.
The Bachelor franchise remains a pop culture institution more than a decade after its premiere. It’s spawned iconic phrases such as “I’m not here to make friends,” “Will you accept this rose?”, and “Can I steal you for a second?” Heaven forbid someone isn’t there for the right reasons. The Bachelor emerged as one of the most culturally relevant reality television shows and that may be, in part, due to some of the ridiculous group dates these poor contestants endure, all the the sake of a rose. But hey, it's entertaining.
During Ben Higgins’s season, one group date consisted of six contestants accompanying him to a “Love Lab” to test their chemistry. And how does a prospective couple test their chemistry? By sniffing each other’s armpits, naturally. Blindfolded, Ben sniffed each woman’s armpit and told the doctors what he thought of their scents. Because who wouldn’t want to let the guy they're pursuing sniff their armpit, on television no less? The girls who want the rose, that's who.
The Bachelor group dates apparently revolve around the question, "How can we get all these women in their bikinis but in a fresh, new, fun way?" On Ben Flajnik’s season, that question got answered in the most absurd way. From the top of hilly, snow-covered street in San Francisco, CA, the contestants skied down the slope – in their swimsuits! Unfortunately, not many of these women came to The Bachelor prepared to ski, resulting in them falling straight into the snow, all while wearing bikinis.
Most insane group date ideas in Bachelor Nation reveal little-to-nothing about compatibility, but this truth-telling session on The Bachelorette certainly did. During JoJo Fletcher’s season, the contestants got on stage and told their most intimate sex stories, revealing much about their sexual preferences and their sense of humor. The reason it crossed the line into absurd territory was because most of it was censored. These guys had to be telling some filthy stories, as some were just bleep after bleep after bleep. Hopefully JoJo learned something, because the audience sure didn't.
On Arie Luyendyk's season, a group date occurred at the famous Moulin Rogue cabaret. The contests dressed in traditional cabaret costumes and learned a routine to perform. Hearing the premise alone, it kind of sounds like an incredibly fun group date, if you’re into that kind of stuff. ''That kind of stuff' involved wearing a thong on television, meaning ABC editors had to work overtime to censor the extra skin on display. Every single contestant sported a little black box over her bottom. You’d think the producers wouldn’t put the show in a position to need so much censorship, but such is The Bachelor.