The Bachelor’s women to watch
THE new Bachelor Matt Agnew was a breath of fresh air with his academic background, but it did leave some of the show's contestants bamboozled.
Despite that, a relationship expert has revealed who are the frontrunners to win his heart, and who are the dark horses among those who have had a slow or false start.
The ratings from last night's premiere made it the fifth most popular program across five metro cities with 828,000 viewers.
The first season with Tim Robards launched to 669,000 viewers. Season two with Blake Garvey got 692,000 viewers. The third season with Sam Wood began with 846,000 viewers. Season four, with Richie Strahan, hit 882,000 and season five with Matty Johnson began on 846,000. The Honey Badger attracted 940,000 viewers last year.
Relationship expert and psychologist Sharon Draper from eharmony told News Corp Matt's body language really spoke true to his feelings last night.
"There were girls, like Elly and Chelsie, who he was clearly very comfortable with from the get-go and physically this was very apparent," she said.
"Chelsie had his shirt unbuttoned (TWICE) and was touching his chest with the tattoo application.
"There was plenty of intimacy in this touching and he was clearly relaxed and enjoying the interaction with her.
"The other girls didn't appreciate this, as they all seemed quite stiff and guarded with Chelsie upon her return to the group.
Sadly, she may be on the outer with them due to their jealousy of the situation.
"Similarly with Elly, Matt's body language showed his feelings clearly.
He was sitting closely on the lounge with her around the campfire, even feeding her his toasted marshmallow, again very intimate behaviour which showed he was quite happy in that moment and was feeling at ease.
"Overall Matt is clearly quite open to the experience, he had a genuine smile when meeting each of the girls, showing an openness to the situation."
Ms Draper said Elly "may have pierced a little arrow in his heart" with delivering the ultimate girl-next-door character.
"She was easygoing, funny, gentle and kind, not just to Matt but also with the other girls, especially in the competition to spend some time with Matt at the cocktail party," she said.
"I think we will see the two of them develop more as the show runs on, as they seem to be very alike in their nature and familiarity is something which always makes a relationship develop quickly and easily."
As for Chelsie, Ms Draper said she was "a blonde beauty with a brain to match Matt's".
"Both working in scientific careers, they instantly bonded over their work and share a very important similar interest," she said.
"This will absolutely help set a solid foundation for their relationship as it progresses through the season. I'm very keen to see where their journey goes as she could be the one with the last rose!"
Those who Ms Draper noticed that may not make it till the end include Rachel, who arrived in her wedding dress.
She said it definitely caught Matt's attention but perhaps not for the right reason.
"She was also quite critical of the other girls, which based on some of the early snippets, may not fare well with Matt as he doesn't seem to deal with drama," she said.
"A couple needs to have similar values in their friendships and Matt doesn't seem to be one to be nasty about others, so when he catches wind of this we may see him removing girls from the competition quickly."
"When Rachel appeared in the wedding dress he was a little more guarded, with an awkward laugh and a bewildered look on his face. He also seemed interested in what her friend, Tonya, had to say about Rachel and wasn't sure if Tonya was also part of the experience or not. Rachel's strategy may have misfired a little in a bit to get the attention she wanted."
Ms Draper also noted that Vakoo, while beautiful, is very young still at just 23 - and it came across with her bid to win his attention by rolling out the red carpet and "parading in front of him like a peacock".
"This is her working to assert herself and capture his attention (we see this all the time in real life relationships) and while she definitely caught his eye, I'm not sure how well they will match beyond that," she said.
"I'm hoping we get to know her a little more in the coming episodes and we get to see more of her personality and interests."
In the second episode, it is understood that Vakoo was given a rose by Matt off camera.
She had conjunctivitis and wasn't at the cocktail party or rose ceremony.
A mystery bet among the group is Abbie. Ms Draper said she would "stick in Matt's memory for her thinking his work was in astrology".
"Fortunately Matt was polite and continued the conversation and just had a kind chuckle to himself after," she said.
"Matt's probably used to people not understanding the intricacies of his work, so we may not be able to rule her out of the running just yet!"
Ms Draper said Emma seems to be positioned as our love-struck contestant.
"She professed her interest (and even using the L-word) very early on to the other girls," she said.
"She is making a good impression on Matt though, as when she was face-to-face with him they seemed to have good conversation and general chemistry.
"I think she will go far and hopefully it is just the initial excitement that had her anxiously watching his every move at the cocktail party."
She added that Emma's behaviour when with Matt was much better than with the other girls. "The cameras showed her to constantly be trying to mark her place and connection with Matt when talking to the other girls, she clearly was trying to show a strong bond from their first interaction by saying how wonderful it was and how much she liked him already," Ms Draper said.
"This may be a tactic to try and solidify their connection among the other girls, something to watch!"
But Helena may be a bit of a dark horse.
"She had a great first meet with Matt and they seemed to chat a little (though were interrupted by others) but on face value she seems to mirror his calm and gentle nature, which will see for a harmonious relationship should they continue their quest for love together," Ms Draper said.
"Hannah came and interrupted Matt's conversation with Helena (before it had even really begun) and was quite forward about injecting herself to be part of the situation.
"Matt seemed quite uncomfortable and was still trying to steer the conversation with Helena, despite Hannah's best efforts to dominate.
"I don't think that forward, aggressive behaviour will fare well with Matt in the long run."
In the second episode of the show, Hannah was axed from the show as Matt only had 17 roses to give out.
It meant six women went home in total.
At the rose ceremony, Sogand and Chelsie were safe but original contestants Georgie, Hannah and Tash left alongside late arrivals Danush, Sam and Tara.