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After mere weeks of waiting, The Bachelorette's season 12 airs tonight. The premiere episode starts at 9:00 p.m. on ABC (it returns to an 8:00 p.m. slot thereafter), and promises two hours of JoJo Fletcher, scorned runner-up from Ben Higgin's Bachelor, meeting a series of 26 suitors. Some will come on horses dressed like unicorns, others in Santa hats, still others in kilts, but all will posture in various degrees of sustained awkwardness on national television. Pack it in; this summer of love will take us through August 1st.
JoJo, leading lady, is from Dallas. She should be especially fun to watch because Dallas style is perfect for a reality TV engine like The Bachelorette. In keeping with the many plunging necklines and cut-off jorts from The Bachelor, her wardrobe promises to be big, sparkly, and full of personality.
She's 25, which might seem a tad young for finding The One, but in Texas years, she should have been married yesterday. Potential plot points include: JoJo has been hurt before; can she overcome her pain and reservations in order to find true love? JoJo is a real estate developer, but will she be able to find a man who can develop her real estate? JoJo's brothers are jerks! Again!
As for the men, JoJo has the opportunity to choose from a "hipster" and "erectile dysfunction expert" — jokes that we're all sure to understand better soon — as well as a fair amount of military guys, former athletes, and real estate Chads. These latter options each seem right up JoJo's ally, upping the stakes as to which bag of muscles in a suit she'll take a shine to first. Get to know them and their very bad shirts before tuning in tonight, and take a look below to make sure you're fully prepared.
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How to Watch With Friends
If that's not your thing, consider a drinking game. It takes a little less planning and is easy to cobble together: Drink when anyone says "amazing," "incredible," some variation of "open" or "open-hearted," "here for the right reasons," or "looking for love." Drink twice when anyone flexes, either their muscles or their egos. Boxed wine or canned rosé is ideal to counter all the masculine energy, but beer is also an acceptable for Monday nights.
How to Watch When No One Will Indulge Your Obsession
Podcasts! The Ringer's managing editor, Juliet Litman, hosts a weekly breakdown called "Bachelor Party" (or now "Bachelorette Party") on Channel 33. Check it out. "Here to Make Friends" is another reliable one. It's from the Huffington Post's Emma Gray and Claire Fallon. And if you haven't already listened to "Who? Weekly," a podcast by Lindsey Weber and Jezebel's Bobby Finger, this is the perfect entry point. Remember, Bachelor Nation is the number one producers of "who?'s" and for that we are grateful.
How to Hang Out With Racked While Watching
And then of course follow along with Racked on Twitter and Snapchat (@rackeddotcom)! We plan on getting way, way too emotionally involved, and could use your participation and support.