TV’s Newest Bachelor

Charlie O'Connell.

By Laura Capuano, Contributor
June / July 2005

When the reality TV show “The Bachelor” first aired on ABC, millions of swooning women tuned in every Monday night to watch the dreamy Alex Michel, Harvard graduate and reader of The Economist, charm 25 bachelorettes with carraige rides through Central Park and low-lit gondola dinners in Venice (swoon). This season, ABC has decided to change things around a bit, relying on a more relaxed Bachelor with slightly less sophisticated tastes. At Irish America, our interest was sparked when we found that this time around, the bachelor was none other than Irish-American Charlie O’Connell. The 29-year-old native New Yorker is the star and indeed grand prize in this, the seventh edition of the series.

So far O’Connell’s stint as a desirable hunk, desperate to find the right girl and settle down, has been memorable. This time around the show has been shaken up quite a bit. There are no limos or ball gowns and for the first time the series is set in New York City. So far, dates have been mostly to bars, and even sometimes end up in O’Connell’s apartment. Girls can be sent home at any time and likewise can be given the rose that affirms O’Connell’s interest.

O’Connell’s commitment to finding true love has been questioned, though! Some fans have posted less than flattering opinions about him on the program’s website and are not convinced that his intentions are honorable. Perhaps he has suffered the backlash because he sent one girl packing for being a single mother and another because she had merely patted his arm to say goodbye rather than give him a goodnight kiss (that was after a two-minute first date!) He did, however, keep the girl who gave him the bikini top that she had been wearing. Aah! Every Irish mother’s dream daughter-in-law!

Charlie’s brother, actor Jerry O’Connell, who you might recognize from hit film Kangaroo Jack, has made a number of appearances on the show. So we get two bachelors for the price of one!

Time will only tell if O’Connell will find love. In the past, bachelors have not been very successful in developing long meaningful relationships with any of the girls after the show. But who knows, maybe the laidback O’Connell will be the first bachelor to sign up for a televised wedding. Given that so many have found the series entertaining to watch, one can only imagine what a guilty pleasure audiences would find the wedding to be! ♦

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