Millions tuned in Monday night to watch as Whitney Bischoff’s relentlessly reiterated affection finally took hold of human tabula rasa Chris Soules, and the two became engaged on network television. But as Soules knelt down in the Goop-ified family barn to present Whitney the ring (by NEIL LANE), we may have some questions: What is appropriate attire for “potentially accepting a wedding proposal in an unheated barn during winter in Iowa”? And how on Earth did we get here?
While it’s been fully 10 weeks of competition, Chris and Whitney have hung out one-on-one effectively eight times before their engagement. Viewers of The Bachelor will know that these hangouts are highly regimented—a “group date” is different from a “one-on-one,” which is different from a “hometown visit,” etc. And a bachelorette does not simply have a conversation with the Bachelor in the context of, say, a larger group cocktail party. In the first episode, to make up for missed time, Whitney’s non-date-but-really-a-date interaction with Chris involved separating him from a cocktail party and presenting him with a special bottle of whiskey he had mentioned enjoying in front of a private, lit fireplace. Which is all to say: These two people became engaged after only eight discrete dates. In an effort to dissect and examine the breathless march of The Bachelor from meeting to marriage, we’ve made a video chronicling the Soules/Bischoff romance. All eight dates of it. Enjoy.