Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

“The Bachelor” season 28 captivates college audience

Sophia Maxim
A crowd of Tulane and Loyola students at The Boot react with enthusiasm to Kelsey receiving the last rose and becoming a Bachelor finalist.

Students cheered and gasped in reaction to reality TV drama at The Boot on Monday. The ongoing season of “The Bachelor” has captured the interest of Loyola and Tulane students with its unique connection to New Orleans and heightened social media engagement. The show has been a popular topic on campus, according to Loyola music industry senior Maddy Kelly. The cast of women competing for love has gained the admiration of viewers, they said.

“I think that each of the women has such a distinct personality this season,” Kelly said. “The emphasis is really on how awesome these women are and how they’ve grown into personas of their own.

In particular, Kelsey Anderson, a resident of New Orleans and one of the two finalists, has emerged as a local favorite among college students, Loyola nursing sophomore Emma Dycus said. Filming came to the city when Bachelor Joey Graziadei visited Kelsey and toured the French Quarter and City Park where they enjoyed beignets and a brass band.

“She’s been my favorite since the beginning,” Kelly said. “It definitely was really cool to see during hometowns that she made it this far and seeing the two of them in New Orleans, at City Park, all these places that us down here know really well.”

Kelsey made an appearance on Feb. 19 at one of the weekly “Bachelor” viewing events at The Boot, an Uptown college bar.

“I’m actually so upset I wasn’t there,” Kelly said. “I think about it every day. When I found out, I was devastated but happy for the people that did get to meet her.”

The Boot has been a hub for excitement surrounding the show, Kelly said.

“I think that [The Boot] has definitely drawn a more social aspect to it,” they said. “I’ve heard people talking in class like, ‘Oh, are you going to The Boot tonight for Bachelor Monday?’”

The finalist was also spotted at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade on March 16 and gave what some fans interpreted as nonverbal hints to the outcome of the season, Kelly said.

“Somebody I know met her at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade,” they said. “Everyone said that she’s really nice. Some girls were saying,‘Oh my God, like you totally won,’ and everyone’s saying she was laughing and smiling really big. I mean, she didn’t say anything, but…”

Kelly said a sense of community and personal connection has formed from the show.

“It feels like we’re almost a part of something bigger,” they said. “It’s cool to think that if she does win, like does that mean that they’re gonna live here? We’re almost a part of their little community and know something that people don’t, even though we totally know nothing.”

Dycus is hopeful that Kelsey will be revealed as Joey’s fiancée, bringing the possibility of more New Orleans appearances as a couple.

“It would be really cool to just see them,” she said.

The Bachelor phenomenon has spread beyond live television with social media discussion. Dycus and Kelly said they started watching the show after seeing viral TikTok videos, like many other viewers this season.
“I definitely feel like, more than any other season, I’ve noticed it has been on social media a ton,” Kelly said.

This season has caught the attention of viewers outside of the regular audience, according to Kelly.

“Even my friends who don’t watch it, they will be telling me, ‘Oh my God. What happened to Maria like, what’s going on?’” Kelly said.

The show aired its second-to-last episode on Monday. Now, viewers are waiting for the final episode to reveal the Bachelor’s fiancée.

Between finalists Daisy Kent and Kelsey Anderson, Dycus said she has “no clue” who’s going to win the show.
“Maria was my favorite, but she’s gone,” Dycus said. “I’ll watch [another season] if she’s the Bachelorette.”
Contestant Maria Georgas has gained the praise of college-aged fans for her bold personality and relatability, Kelly said.
Maria had never brought home a boyfriend to meet her family until Joey.

“It was all new to her, and I feel like that’s something that we haven’t really seen before – someone who’s serious but is still new to dating,” they said “That’s definitely relatable for our age, where it feels like the dating scene, especially in New Orleans, is kind of just desolate and really feels strange, so I think seeing that side of Maria has really resonated with me and a lot of other people.”

Despite these aspects of relatability, some fans question the unconventional premise of the show.

“It’s a weird concept, but if people wanna go on it, I guess that’s them,” Dycus said.

Kelly believes the absurdity of the reality TV show is part of the charm.

“I love reality T.V., and I think it’s ridiculous, but that’s why people love it,” they said. “The premise is crazy, and I could never do that, like ever. I’m too jealous for that. There’s a strange part of it where it’s like you can look away, and that’s why it’s so successful, I’d say.”

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About the Contributor
Sophia Maxim
Sophia Maxim, Editor in Chief
Sophia Maxim is a multimedia journalist and designer from Atlanta, GA. She is The Maroon’s incoming Editor in Chief and previously served as Managing Editor for Print and Design Chief. She is a visual communication junior with a design minor. In her free time, she enjoys exploring the city, listening to podcasts, and collaborating on creative projects. Sophia can be reached at [email protected].

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