“The Bachelor” is one of those shows that people look forward to once a week so that they can break out their bottle of wine and enjoy watching the drama unfold. It’s even better when you watch it with friends to discuss opinions and react to what is happening on the screen. As each of us in the group happen to be “The Bachelor” fans ourselves, we came up with the idea of looking into “The Bachelor” viewing parties here in the Cal Poly/SLO community. The reason why is because we noticed that there is a trend of rising popularity in these viewing parties, and we wanted to dive deeper into why people, especially college students, like to partake in these festivities.
While I was doing some research, I found that “The Bachelor” is widely discussed in the media, which is no surprise. I also found that wide-scale viewing parties take place all over the country. When it came to deciding on an angle, at first we weren’t exactly sure what about viewing parties we should focus on.
”I think the biggest challenge was probably finding the right voice for the article- like in deciding who would be reading it, and how to encompass all the elements of the story without it being too all over the place,” journalism senior Cydney Melton said. “We had to figure out how to consolidate all of the angles and finding the right tone for what we’re writing about since it’s not a super serious subject.”
We came to a consensus that the written story should cover the different types of parties which entails a small viewing party at someone’s house, a viewing party at a sorority house, and SLO Brew Rock’s Bachelor Bingo event that they host every Monday. Melton interviewed fans of the show and even a Cal Poly professor who gave some insight on the logic behind the premise of the show.
Assistant Professor of Communication Studies Dr. Anuraj Dhillon discussed excitation-transfer theory to explain why she believes the reason for all of the adventurous situations on the show is because the fear and arousal for feelings of attraction toward somebody. This was one of the most interesting things learned from the interview with her.
One fan, English senior Lauren Turner, provided some insight on why she is drawn to the show and the culture that surrounds it.
“I think it’s kind of an absurd show. I mean there’s a lot going on. There are a lot of humorous elements that aren’t always necessarily supposed to be humorous,” Turner said. “But, I think it’s more fun to watch with people.”
What we all found really interesting about SLO Brew Rock’s event is that they are able to make a profit off of the fans of the show.
“I think is really interesting is that a big business like SLO Brew is profiting from how popular the show is just by providing a space with cable that students might not have access to, and a place that they can all come together and watch a show,” Melton said. “They don’t really have to put in that much extra effort and it just brings a lot more business to them than they would normally get on a Monday.”
The video portion of this story focuses on SLO Brew Rock specifically, and this includes footage of people enjoying their drinks while watching and reacting to the show. We were able to interview the bartenders at the venue as well as attendees.
However, getting the attendees to give interesting feedback was difficult. Many of them either gave generic answers that didn’t give much substance to the video/written piece, or they just didn’t seem very interested in talking about it.
“I think the biggest challenge in creating the video was filming it. I interviewed well over the required amount of people, but it was difficult to capture the enthusiastic people in the audience,” journalism senior Graciella Chella said. “I went to SLO Brew several times to get a variety of B-roll shots and quality interviews.”
Despite this struggle, the outcome of the video was well worth it to us. This just taught us that if it’s challenging to get adequate content, you just need to keep trying until you do.
“It definitely felt like a puzzle but it was very rewarding when it all came together,” Chella said.
One more portion of this project that really tied the whole story together was the multimedia aspect. Journalism senior Olivia Nelson worked hard to not only take the photos, but to also add interactive elements to the story that will make the article more engaging for the audience- which will most likely be fans of “The Bachelor.”
”I’ve had a really great time building out the multimedia elements of the piece,” Nelson said. “I wanted to make the story highly interactive so I tried something entirely new and built a WordPress personality quiz that I think will be really entertaining for Bachelor fans.”
Overall, this story was very lighthearted, making it a lot of fun to work on. We are hoping that “The Bachelor” fans will enjoy reading and watching this story as much as we enjoyed creating it.