Arie who? Becca Kufrin officially took control of Bachelor Mansion during the Monday, May 28, season 14 premiere of The Bachelorette. After saging the property with the help of Rachel Lindsay, JoJo Fletcher, and Kaitlyn Bristowe — to get rid of the bad karma from her ex-fiancé, of course — the 28-year-old publicist changed into a slinky white dress and prepared to meet the men who would be vying for her affection.
It was, as it is every season, a weird night, with cheesy pickup lines, trying-to-be-cute gimmicks, and questions about who was there “for the right reasons.” But Becca did the damn thing. (Sorry, we had to.) Keep reading to see a breakdown of the early front-runners (including the winner of the first impression rose!), the potential “villains,” and the rest of her 28 potential suitors. (Spoilers ahead.)
First Impression Rose Winner
Garrett: We were a little skeptical when the 29-year-old medical sales rep tried to do a Minnesotan accent in his introduction package, but he managed to win over Becca pretty early on. After rolling up in a minivan — complete with a diaper bag, soccer balls, and a baby seat, because he hopes “to be a great dad and an awesome husband” one day — he proceeded to give Becca a little fly-fishing lesson in the pool. By the end of it, she was, in her own words, “smitten.”
“Garrett does remind me of home,” Becca said before giving him the coveted first impression rose. “I grew up fishing and hunting with my dad. My family would love him.”
Blake: After bringing a horse to last season’s After the Final Rose special, and an ox to tonight’s premiere — because his feelings for her are “as strong as an ox” — the 28-year-old sales rep has established himself as one to watch in the quest for Becca’s heart. She already seems more comfortable with him than with most of the other guys, and she said in a confessional that she feels like they’re on the same wavelength.
Colton: At 26, Colton is one of the younger guys in the group, but he has one of the more interesting backstories. A former pro football player, he walked away from the NFL after an injury and went on to start his own foundation to help kids, like his young cousin, who have cystic fibrosis. It looks like there might be some drama in future episodes over him telling Becca that he’s a virgin, but it seems safe to say at this point that he’ll be sticking around for a while.
David: The 25-year-old venture capitalist was the butt of a lot of jokes when he showed up in a chicken suit, but his unconventional approach paid off. Becca was totally charmed by his goofy personality and “good energy,” and if Twitter is any indication, viewers were, too.
Lincoln: The 26-year-old sales exec first charmed viewers on After the Final Rose, when he called Becca’s ex-fiancé a “wanker.” And he was pretty charming tonight, too, with his gifts of cake and jewelry. (He brought her a bracelet from Nigeria.) If we’re just judging by the premiere, he’s definitely in the top five. But it looks like he might be at the center of some major drama in the future — a preview for the rest of the season showed one of the guys calling him a compulsive liar, cleverly edited together with some footage of Becca in tears. We’re hoping that we won’t have to move him to the “potential ‘villains'” category below.
Wills: The 29-year-old graphic designer and self-described “closet nerd” had an easy chemistry with Becca, especially after he showed her his Harry Potter tattoo.
Jordan: The 26-year-old model claims to be a “pensive gentleman,” but he didn’t really seem to be either of those things at the cocktail party. He spent most of the night bad-mouthing the other guys and bragging about his modeling career — it’s about “so much more than being ridiculously good-looking,” he said, channeling his inner Zoolander — so he’s clearly not here to make friends. And judging by the way he talked about Becca, he’s not here to fall in love, either.
too early to tell
Alex: The 31-year-old construction manager barely got any screen time in the premiere, so he needs to set himself apart from the pack or risk fading into the background permanently.
Chris: The 30-year-old sales trainer seemed like an early front-runner when he stepped out of the limo with a full choir to serenade Becca, but his involvement in the drama with Chase — more on that below — isn’t a great sign. The previews for the rest of the season seem to suggest that he’ll have issues with some of the other guys, too, so stay tuned.
Christon: The 31-year-old former Harlem Globetrotter earned style points for his impressive dunk over Becca’s head, but it remains to be seen if he has enough chemistry with her to stay in the game.
Clay: The 30-year-old pro football player bonded with Becca over their Midwestern backgrounds — and the clay art project was a cute gimmick — but is there a romantic spark?
Connor: The 25-year-old fitness coach made a big first impression by stepping out of the limo and immediately getting down on one knee, and he wasted no time before stealing her for some one-on-one time at the cocktail party. (Sabering that bottle of champagne was a nice touch.) But it’s hard to tell if he established any kind of real connection with Becca.
Jason: The 29-year-old corporate banker didn’t get much screen time, but his ABC bio says he likes to belt out Disney tunes, so we’re mildly intrigued.
Jean Blanc: The Haiti-born 31-year-old colognoisseur taught Becca to say “let’s do the damn thing” in French, and he apparently “smells really good” — which makes sense since he has more than 100 bottles of cologne.
John: The 28-year-old tech wiz, who created the app for Venmo, said his grandmother used to tell him that she knew love could happen overnight because it happened to her.
Leo: The 31-year-old stuntman has an impressive head of hair — Becca joked that it was better than hers — but we still need to see what else he has to offer.
Mike: Bringing a cardboard cutout of Becca’s ex-fiancé could have backfired, but luckily for the 27-year-old football analyst, she seemed at least mildly amused by it.
Nick: We were hoping to see one of the 27-year-old attorney’s signature tracksuits when he stripped off the racing suit he was wearing to meet Becca, but he opted for a blazer and slacks instead.
Rickey: The 27-year-old IT consultant didn’t get a lot of screen time, but we like that his ABC bio says he’s looking for a best friend first, girlfriend second.
Ryan: The 26-year-old California native didn’t have his banjo when he stepped out of the limo, but we’re hoping for a performance or two in future episodes.
Trent: We weren’t sure what to think when the 28-year-old realtor showed up in a hearse and announced, “When I heard you were the Bachelorette, I literally died, but then you brought me back to life.” Becca was intrigued enough to keep him around, though.
Chase: The 27-year-old advertising exec found himself at the center of some early drama when Chris revealed that a woman Chase used to date had sent a text saying he was there for the wrong reasons. Chase tried to get ahead of it by coming clean to Becca about the situation, but the damage was done.
Christian: Unfortunately, we didn’t see much of the 28-year-old soccer player-turned-banker until he said goodbye to Becca — and by then it was already too late.
Darius: The 26-year-old pharmaceutical sales rep had the advantage of meeting Becca at last season’s After the Final Rose special, but she still sent him home without a rose.
Grant: We wish we could say more about the 27-year-old electrician, but we only saw him for a few seconds before the rose ceremony.
Jake: Becca sent the 29-year-old marketing consultant home halfway through the cocktail party, after revealing that they had friends in common and had met on multiple occasions in Minnesota. Since he had never shown any interest in her before, she suspected he wasn’t really there for her and asked him to leave.
Joe: The 31-year-old grocery-store owner was charming enough in his intro package, but he “forgot everything [he] was going to say” when he came face to face with Becca.
Kamil: We were curious about this self-proclaimed “social media participant” going into the premiere, but we didn’t learn much about him before he was sent home.
Who are your early favorites on The Bachelorette? Tell us @BritandCo!
(photos via ABC/Craig Sjodin + ABC/Paul Hebert)