1 of 16
The Bachelor (season 1)
Finale aired April 25, 2002
Bachelor: Alex Michel
Potential brides: Trista Rehn and Amanda March
Jessica Shaw wrote:
On Trista: ''Trista started off so icy you practically had to put on a sweater while watching.... She didn't throw herself at him or sexually attack him. She didn't claim to have the deepest of emotions she didn't quite have. Still, it was impossible not to see the connection growing stronger between these two as the weeks went on.''
On Amanda: ''This girl signed on looking for Prince Charming. She seduced. She flattered. She pledged eternal affection. And if we learned anything from Alex, it's clear that an ego boost can be the ultimate aphrodisiac.''
The Choice: ''By the last 10 minutes...'I went to Harvard and Stanford' Alex tried to pretend as if he hadn't made the worst choice of his life.... The best woman didn't win mostly because the man was so far from being a prize himself.''
What Happened Next: They didn't live happily ever after: Amanda and Alex split, and she accused him of trysting with Trista, who would later star in the first Bachelorette series.
2 of 16
The Bachelor (season 2)
Finale aired Nov. 20, 2002
Bachelor: Aaron Buerge
Potential brides: Helene Eksterowicz and Brooke Smith
Jessica Shaw wrote:
On Helene: ''Over the past few weeks, it became increasingly clear that Helene was in it to win it — not because she was madly in love with Aaron, but because she wanted the victory. And, most transparently, she bought him a money clip. Hmmm, is somebody after something other than your heart, Aaron?''
On Brooke: ''Brooke, on the other hand, may be a mere 22, but that girl had more genuine emotion for this undeserving clod in her pinkie toe than Helene had in her entire body.''
The Choice: ''If you teared up during Aaron's predictable proposal to Helene, just stop reading right now because you're not going to like what I have to say. If you've watched the show since the beginning, you saw Aaron turn into a bulging-eyed cartoon character every time he saw the Jersey-girl school psychologist. You had to know no other woman really had a shot. Well, guess what? The guy made the wrong choice.''
What Happened Next: Before the end of 2002, Helene and Aaron's engagement was off. Buerge married commercial insurance agent Angye McIntosh in their hometown, Springfield, Mo., in August 2009.
3 of 16
The Bachelorette (season 1)
Finale aired Feb. 19, 2003
Bachelorette: Trista Rehn
Potential grooms: Charlie Maher and Ryan Sutter
Ken Tucker wrote:
On Charlie: ''As much as I had been digging the way Trista had managed to project a complex personality in a show designed to simplify romance to a 'He loves me, he loves me not' pull-the-daisy game, I really thought, beneath her sexy-cool exterior lay...a cold, TV-guided heart. That, in other words, she would pick Charlie, the slick 'financial analyst' hustler.''
On Ryan: ''The melting-heart, poetry-writing fireman...was genuine in his awkwardness but also sweetly well-spoken — also a bore, thanks to the [editing by the] producers.''
The Choice: ''Holy mackerel: She picked the right guy! Unsolicited parting advice: Ryan, lay off the rhyming couplets; Trista, pitch your voice a tad lower in intimate moments. And all the best, kids.''
What Happened Next: Trista and Ryan became the first couple from the Bachelor or Bachelorette to actually get married. Their gift from ABC: $1 million for getting hitched on TV. Trista and Ryan's first child, a boy, Max, was born in July 2007. Their second, daughter Blakesley, arrived April 3, 2009. The duo celebrated 10 years of marriage by renewing their vows on national television on Jan. 19, 2014.
4 of 16
The Bachelor (season 3)
Finale aired May 18, 2003
Bachelor: Andrew Firestone
Potential brides: Jen Schefft and Kirsten Buschbacher
Liane Bonin wrote:
On Jen: ''Jen, who started out the show as just another doe-eyed blonde, emerged as the ultimate spunky Cinderella by wowing Andy's folks and making the best of several crappy situations.''
On Kirsten: ''Watching her try to hold her own with Andy's sensible older sisters...filled me with a sense of awe, not only because the poor thing wasn't even aware of how vapid she sounded, but also because both [siblings] were able to hold those frozen smiles on their faces for so long without breaking into hives.''
The Choice: ''Andy...not only chose the right girl but gave Kirsten what-for about the not-quite-ex-boyfriend she had tucked away back home.''
What Happened Next: Andrew and Jen's relationship went flat less than a year after the finale. Jen would later return to the series as the third Bachelorette. Andrew married model Ivana Bozilovic in California on July 5, 2008. They welcomed their first child, a son, Adam Brooks, on March 22, 2009, followed by a daughter named Anja in 2011 and a second son, Shane, in January 2014.
5 of 16
The Bachelor (season 4)
Finale aired Nov. 19, 2003
Bachelor: Bob Guiney
Potential brides: Estella Gardinier and Kelly Jo Kuharski
Jessica Shaw wrote:
On Kelly Jo: ''The gazillionth time Kelly Jo...announced how confident she was that Bob would propose, you just knew the producers were setting her up for a fall.''
On Estella: ''During the finale, she was so adorable, so confident, so loving, so intelligent, so embracing of her forehead wrinkles.''
The Choice: ''I feel a small amount of comfort in knowing that the man so many of us loved from our living rooms did not want to spend his life with a woman who wears glitter eye shadow.... Since we knew who was getting the last rose, the only surprise was going to be if [Estella] would get the ring. Though the down-on-one-knee moment always makes for good television, it was far more touching that Bob wanted to continue their relationship without cameras watching their every move.''
What Happened Next: A month after the final episode aired, Estella told People, ''He's not the person I thought he was. I don't see any reason to ever have a conversation with him.'' In July 2004, People reported she auctioned off the $45,000 diamond ring Guiney gave her on the Bachelor finale for $22,300 to help her mother buy a house. Guiney married All My Children actress Rebecca Budig, whom he'd met when she was hosting a Bachelor recap special, on July 3, 2004. She filed for divorce in April 2010.
6 of 16
The Bachelorette (season 2)
Finale aired Feb. 25, 2004
Bachelorette: Meredith Phillips
Potential grooms: Ian McKee and Matthew Hickl
Jennifer Armstrong wrote:
On Ian: ''Who do we think loves Ian more, Meredith or Bachelorette producers? (Or me?) Definitely a toss-up. That former New York investment banker made for some fine television during the two-hour finale.... The guy was a bad boy and Prince Charming all wrapped up in one yummy package.''
On Matthew: ''The fam couldn't get enough of him and his bland, if sincere, professions of adoration for Meredy (as they call her). I, on the other hand, had to muster superhuman self-control not to hit the remote and catch a little of The O.C. instead.''
The Choice: ''When [Meredith and Ian] saw each other, it was clear she'd made the right choice — basically, they both turned into blithering, almost incoherent idiots. Meredith...took a chance on the passionate adventurer instead of the sure thing — and her love tamed him into submission. The stuff of fairy tales, folks. And some damned fine TV.''
What Happened Next: Fine TV, yes; fairy tale, not so much. They confirmed their split in February 2005. A classically trained chef, Phillips published The Date Night Cookbook in February 2008. Phillips later married Michael Broady before opening up about her battle with alcoholism in 2013.
7 of 16
The Bachelor (season 5)
Finale aired May 19, 2004
Bachelor: Jesse Palmer
Potential brides: Jessica Bowlin and Tara Huckeby
Mandi Bierly wrote:
On Jessica: ''Mom thought Jessica was the total package — a good wife, a good mother. Dad thought there's no way she could have enough life experience to be prepared for marriage — or marital problems — at 21.''
On Tara: ''Dad thought Tara was warm, engaging, confident, smart, spontaneous, and totally into his boy. Mom thought Tara was all about finding herself and had no feelings for Jesse at all.''
The Choice: ''Today, I'm speechless. (Well, I would be if I didn't have to write this thing.) Not because I'm overly ecstatic or upset that Jesse chose Jessica, but because one minute after the show ended...I just didn't care.''
What Happened Next: The pro quarterback and the law student's relationship fumbled one month after the finale aired. He recovered with a career in broadcasting.
8 of 16
The Bachelor (season 6)
Finale aired Nov. 24, 2004
Bachelor: Byron Velvick
Potential brides: Mary Delgado and Tanya Michel
Tom Conroy wrote:
On Mary: ''Whenever Byron was on camera with Mary, he looked bored, distracted, or nervous — or was giving that sincere, blinking, blank look that he has used when talking to women he's about to dump.''
On Tanya: ''For much of the first 90 minutes, we saw Byron giving her googly eyes, kissing her, grabbing her. His friends said he looked happier than they had ever seen him. Byron even got up and offered a toast in front of his parents and Tanya's mother: 'Here's to Christmases in Texas.'''
The Choice: ''Tanya was limoed back into the dating pool after what she later called her fastest breakup ever, and the emotionally overwhelmed Mary stumbled out onto the rose platform. Sprinkling his spiel to his Cuban American intended with what sounded to me like pretty decent Spanish (he either told her, 'You look lovely tonight' or 'You see tuna this nacho'), Byron said, 'I cannot see myself spending another minute without you as my wife.'''
What Happened Next: Hours after appearing as a couple — but not yet married — on an ABC special called After the Rose in November 2007, Mary was arrested on charges of assaulting Byron at their Tampa townhouse. The charges were later dropped, and Byron told US Weekly in March 2008 they were still together, and taking things ''day by day.'' In December 2009, the pro angler confirmed to US Weekly that the engagement was officially off.
9 of 16
The Bachelorette (season 3)
Finale aired Feb. 28, 2005
Bachelorette: Jen Schefft
Potential grooms: Jerry Ferris and John Paul Merritt
Michael Slezak wrote:
On Jerry: ''If you were days away from getting engaged to a guy, do you think you'd still have to ask him what exactly he did for a living? And frankly, would the following statement qualify as a sufficient declaration of affection from your future husband? 'The last thing I want you to question is whether or not I'm in love with you.'''
On John Paul: ''John Paul made it clear he thinks choosing a wife is kind of like choosing an automobile.... I could almost imagine him going through a mental checklist of predetermined features: blond hair, small waist, ability to mingle at cocktail parties, wardrobe full of sparkly sweaters, independent suspension.''
The Choice: ''I just about fell off my couch when Jen Schefft grabbed a red pen and rewrote the Bachelorette script all by herself, choosing to be alone (gasp!) instead of entering into a sham marriage engagement with Jerry or John Paul. Whatever her reasons, Jen's sudden declaration of independence gave me hope ? if not for the future of love, feminism, and humanity, then at least for the future of ABC's reality dating franchise.''
What Happened Next: Schefft married Joe Waterman, whom she met on a blind date in February 2008, in Chicago on May 15, 2009. ''He gives me flowers but never roses," she told People when announcing her engagement. The couple welcomed their first child, daughter Mae Elizabeth, on November 13, 2010, as well as a second daughter, Charlotte Grace on July 31, 2012.
10 of 16
The Bachelor (season 7)
Finale aired May 16, 2005
Bachelor: Charlie O'Connell
Potential brides: Sarah Brice and Krisily Kennedy
Michael Slezak wrote:
On Krisily: ''Krisily positioned herself as the heartbroken yet 'classy' heiress to the Bachelorette throne.... From the moment Krisily arrived in Long Island, it was clear she'd already earned Charlie's 'just friends' seal of disapproval.''
On Sarah: ''Let's see: Krisily gets taken to the Montauket, where she's forced to drink beer out of a plastic cup with the guys; Sarah B. gets taken to a quiet sit-down restaurant for a glass of white wine. Charlie jokingly tells his dad not to make a pass at Krisily but shows nothing but respect for Sarah B. Which woman is Charlie falling for again?''
The Choice: Charlie and Sarah B. found love, or something like it, topped off by a big mega-carat friendship ring.
What Happened Next: In September 2007, Sarah told In Touch Weekly she and Charlie had split up a few months earlier. After they reunited, they admitted his drinking had been the problem. In January 2010, Oxygen announced it was developing a reality show with the couple. In April 2010, O'Connell confirmed to People that they'd split again.
11 of 16
The Bachelor: Paris (season 8)
Finale aired Feb. 27, 2006
Bachelor: Dr. Travis Stork
Potential brides: Sarah Stone and Moana Dixon
Michael Slezak wrote:
On Moana: ''[Redeemed] herself...with her ice-maiden response to Travis' parting comment that he'd miss her: 'I would certainly hope. In circumstances like this, no one ever knows.' Oooh, suh-nap! That's about as close to female empowerment as you'll ever get on The Bachelor.''
On Sarah: ''[How] about the way [Travis] tried to mislead Sarah (a woman he's supposedly in love with) into thinking he'd chosen Moana — all in the name of good television?! What he deserved was a smack in the kisser, not another unappetizing kissing session with the kindergarten teacher.''
The Choice: ''Bachelor Travis Stork, M.D., decided Sarah Tennessee would 'make the best doctor's wife' (ABC's words, not mine!) and presented her with a 2.2-karat diamond ring on a chain.''
What Happened Next: Blaming the need to stay apart for months between the end of the show's taping and the airing of the finale, the pair announced their split soon after the broadcast. Stork is now one of the hosts of the syndicated talk show The Doctors. Stork tied the knot with pediatrician and girlfriend of three years, Charlotte Brown, in 2012.
12 of 16
The Bachelor: Rome (season 9)
Finale aired Nov. 27, 2006
Bachelor: Prince Lorenzo Borghese
Potential brides: Jen Wilson and Sadie Murray
Michael Slezak wrote:
On Jen and Sadie: ''Lorenzo, struggling to conjure up positive adjectives about both his potential mates, finally [settled] on 'overly polite.'''
On the season: ''Why am I getting worked up over a show that glorifies the idea of falling in love with the bare outline of another human being? In the world of The Bachelor, it's always the vaguest personalities, the ones who don't express a single quirky or interesting fact about themselves, who triumph. Which makes sense, I guess, if you're heeding some artificial deadline to fall in love by the end of November sweeps.''
The Choice: ''Sadie, you dodged a bullet.... Lorenzo, [brought] the evening to its romantic climax by holding out the dodgy diamond to Jen, telling her he loved her, saying she couldn't have it, then having her try it on.''
What Happened Next: In January 2007, the producers of the show confirmed that Borghese and Wilson had split. That same month, US Weekly reported that Murray had moved to New York to rekindle her romance with the prince. In March 2007, news of their breakup hit gossip columns.
13 of 16
The Bachelor (season 10)
Finale aired May 21, 2007
Bachelor: Andy Baldwin
Potential brides: Tessa Horst and Bevin Powers
Michael Slezak wrote:
On Bevin: ''At least Bevin knew when to keep her mouth shut — refusing to let Andy off the hook after he gave her the old 'this is not a rejection at all' heave-ho (no pun intended). Indeed, the only thing that would've made Bevin's freeze-out even more satisfying would've been seeing her push Andy away, demand that he get his two-timing hands off her, and then march to the limo on her own. I mean, she let dude cop a feel while he was supposed to be flying their chopper!''
The Choice: ''I wonder how Tessa is feeling now that she knows her man toyed and smooched with Bevin mere days before he popped the question. And I wonder if Bevin's tears had dried on Andy's shoulder before he got down on bended knee before Tessa. Sort of puts a damper on ABC's relentless promos promising 'the most romantic proposal ever.'''
What Happened Next: In August 2007, Andy and Tessa told People they had broken off their engagement, but remained ''committed to our relationship.'' Roughly six months later, they called it quits. After a much-publicized relationship with Marla Maples in 2008, Baldwin has kept the focus on his work as a US Navy doctor, triathlete, and humanitarian.
14 of 16
The Bachelor (season 11)
Finale aired Nov. 19, 2007
Bachelor: Brad Womack
Potential brides: DeAnna Pappas and Jenni Croft
Michael Slezak wrote:
On Jenni: ''Maybe it was her failure to make a homemade lasagna or a promise that she'd move directly to Texas — without passing go and without spending another season as a Phoenix Suns dancer — that caused Brad to reject her.''
On DeAnna: Maybe Brad was disturbed by the way DeAnna's eyelashes batted at the speed of a hummingbird's wings every time they were alone together. Maybe it was DeAnna's totally ferocious declaration that if they ended up together, she was going to want 'the dishes put where I want. The laundry done the way I want.'''
The Choice: ''There was Brad, declaring how 'marriage is one time and one time only,' and then suddenly, stepping away from DeAnna, circling like an uncomfortable cat trying to fluff up its bedding, rubbing his hands together, and [saying]: 'I want so badly to be so confident. To pick you up and twirl you around and give you a diamond ring and spend my life with you. But I can't look you in the eye and tell you that I love you. I can't.... I have to tell you goodbye.' BAM! Brad's twin brother, Chad, would not be gaining a sister-in-law/employee bartender after all.''
What Happened Next: While Pappas went on to become the next Bachelorette, Womack briefly became the most hated man in America. The bar owner returned to Austin and told EW in 2009 that people began to calm down after Ellen DeGeneres (who had called him a ''jerk'') let him explain to her audience that he never asked producers to fly Pappas' father in for the finale. (He also told EW that he admitted to producers two weeks before the finale that he didn't see a future with any woman there, but was told he had to go ring shopping and all the rest of it anyway: ''Per my contract, there was gonna be a final ceremony — whether I picked anybody or not.'')
15 of 16
The Bachelor: London Calling (season 12)
Finale aired May 12, 2008
Bachelor: Matt Grant
Potential brides: Chelsea Wanstrath and Shayne Lamas
Mandi Bierly wrote:
On Chelsea: ''I loved that Chelsea stopped and fought with Matt as he walked her back to the limo.... She should have nailed him more for saying that his only 'but' with her is that it took her a 'long time' to open up to him. That's such crap: (a) You haven't known each other a 'long time,' and (b) The woman took off her panties on national television for you. She put herself out there, okay? Just tell her the truth: She's not warm and cuddly, and you want a woman who is.
On Shayne: ''You have to admire how Shayne handled [Matt's brother] Simon. She asked him for his honest first impression of her, and then didn't jump in and get defensive when he admitted that initially, he had no idea what Matt saw in her other than the obvious blond beauty.''
The Choice: ''He told Shayne that he'd looked into her big, brown eyes and thought it was too good to be true: an Englishman falling in love with an American movie star. But she made him believe that's she's just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to love her — okay, I'm paraphrasing.''
What Happened Next: In June 2008, a month after the finale aired, Matt confirmed to People that he'd moved out of the L.A. apartment he shared with Shayne, but said the two were still engaged. A month later, however, they issued a statement confirming their split. In January 2010, Grant, still Stateside, told US Weekly that he was developing a new show called Pimp My Bride. In April 2010, Lamas eloped with TheDirty.com's Nik Richie in Las Vegas. Despite a stint on VH1's Couples Therapy, the couple is currently expecting their second child together.
16 of 16
The Bachelorette (season 4)
Finale aired July 7, 2008
Bachelorette: DeAnna Pappas
Potential grooms: Jesse Csincsak and Jason Mesnick
Erin Stevenson wrote:
On Jesse: ''The snowboarder finally stepped up to the plate and asked DeAnna's dad for his permission to propose to his daughter. (D. tipped him off; I just know it.) The sure sign dad wasn't totally against having a snowboarding son-in-law? They exchanged nugs after a hug.''
On Jason: "Jason arrived bearing flowers for everyone and a basket of goodies; he easily won over the family, though DeAnna's father wondered if his daughter was ready for an instant family.''
The Choice: ''Though the men happily bought rings for the bride of their dreams, the board game [Jason gave DeAnna on their final date] was too little too late for Jason. Our bachelorette had already landed in love with Jesse, as opposed to being still falling in love with Jason, or so she tried to say.''
What Happened Next: DeAnna and Jesse had planned for a 2009 wedding in the Bahamas and an ABC-subsidized honeymoon in Greece, but in November 2008, Jesse announced via the couple's website and a YouTube video that DeAnna had broken up with him with the ol' ''I love you, but I'm not in love with you'' line. Pappas wed Stephen Stagliano, twin brother of Michael Stagliano, who appeared on Jillian Harris's season of The Bachelorette, in 2011, and the couple announced that they were expecting their first child. Addison Marie Stagliano was born on Feb. 6, 2014.