The dazzling debut of ‘The Golden Bachelor’

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“The Golden Bachelor” is a spin-off reality television show of the famous series “The Bachelor”, an ABC production. ABC is known for producing countless shows, but “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette” have consistently earned some of the highest ratings. Rumors about who “The Golden Bachelor” might be started swirling this past spring, three years after ABC announced they would be creating the spinoff series. The first “Golden Bachelor” was announced on July 17. 

“The Bachelor” is a reality dating television series where approximately 25 women compete for the heart of one bachelor. At the start of the season, all the women live in the same mansion in Agoura Hills, California. As the season develops, the cast travels to beautiful destinations around the world, and a few women are chosen each week to go on dates ranging from private concerts, picnics, helicopter rides and bungee jumping. As expected from 25 women living together in the same house — and battling for the love of the same man — there are a plethora of petty arguments and fights. In the infamous rose ceremony each week, the bachelor must make the difficult decision of who he wants to stay and who he wants to send home. He hands out red roses to indicate who will continue on, and the remaining women are left to say their goodbyes. 

Jenna Burd, a sophomore entrepreneurship and innovation and marketing double major, has been a fan of “The Bachelor” for years. 

“My parents watched [‘The Bachelor’], and I started watching it when I was old enough,” Burd said. “It’s always been a family tradition on Monday nights to watch it together. We always like to predict who wins and to make our own comments like we’re the reality show host.” 

“The Golden Bachelor” is a spinoff of the traditional show. What differentiates the two is that the cast members of “The Golden Bachelor” are in their 60s and 70s, whereas the cast members of “The Bachelor” are in their 20s and 30s. 

72-year-old Gerry Turner is the first “Golden Bachelor”. He will be dating 22 bachelorettes — who come from all across the country — ranging from age 60 to age 75

Turner has not always been a bachelor though. He married his high school sweetheart, Toni, in 1974 when he was just 23 years old. Unfortunately, in 2017, Toni passed away. Gerry and Toni have two daughters together, Angie and Jenny. They also have two granddaughters, Charlee and Peyton. Prior to Turner’s star-studded days, he was a restauranter, owning and managing “Mr. Quick” restaurants. 

The Iowa native and his wife moved to Hudson, Indiana in 2017, and purchased their lakeside dream home right before Toni fell ill. Turner happily lives there as of now, but might have to reevaluate if the time comes for him and his new love to move in together. In his spare time, Turner loves playing golf and pickleball, watching his favorite sports team and spending time with his friends and family. 

Since this is the first cast of baby boomers versus the traditional cast of millennials and Gen Zers, fans are excited to see the differences in how the show will turn out. From public displays of affection, how the fights will go down and the number of tears shed, fans are waiting at the edge of their seats to see how everything will play out. 

Ellie Ritterbusch, a first-year math and statistics double major, believes that the outcome of the show will be more successful due to the older age of the participants. 

“I think Gerry has a higher chance of finding his true love than someone younger on ‘[The] Bachelor’ because Gerry is in a later stage of life,” Ritterbusch said. “At that point, I feel like you are looking for someone to be there with you; you’re looking for that comfort. You’re looking for that companion, just someone to spend the time with to have a good retirement.” 

One contestant that fans are most eager to see is Patty James. The 70-year-old North Carolina native is the mother of the star-studded Season 25 bachelor Matt James. During Matt’s season, viewers got a glimpse of Patty’s relationship with her former husband, Manny James. Fans will learn even more about that relationship through Patty’s eyes in the upcoming season. Matt is so adoring of his mother and cannot wait to watch her on the show. 

The well-known Season 15 bachelorette Hannah Brown discussed her thoughts on the spin-off during an E-News interview on Aug. 11. 

“I’m actually really excited about ‘The Golden Bachelor’,” Brown said in the interview. “Gerry seems so sweet, and I’m so excited for him to have this new love in his life. Everybody deserves love no matter what age and to experience that in a new way. I think it’s gonna be really interesting.” 

“The Golden Bachelor” will be available to watch live on ABC on Sept. 28 and to stream the next day on Hulu.


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