These are the only three facts you need to know about my life right now:
1. It’s 2 p.m.
2. I’m still hungover
3. It’s all Chris Harrison’s fault
Well, maybe it isn’t Chris Harrisons fault exactly, but his franchise is the reason why I’m eating a cupcake in the middle of the day. I’ve been on a bit of a Bachelor bender this week, catching up on Colton’s season and sampling some new recap podcasts since my favorite (RIP Rosebuddies) has moved on to better pastures. While fielding recommendations from friends (some of them prefer RoseCast, while others rep Bachelor Party), I found something. Something wonderful. Something terrible. Something that makes my heart sing and my brain turn off.
Nick Viall’s podcast, The Viall Files.
If you’re out of loop, Nick Viall was the Bachelor on the 21st season of (you guessed it) The Bachelor. Before that, he made his way around the franchise. He was on two seasons of The Bachelorette (were he was continuously cast as a villain) and eventually took control of his edit and turned his storyline around on Bachelor in Paradise, where he was considered the older, wiser one who had been around the block.
Because of his evolving place in the franchise and his (perhaps accidental, perhaps purposeful, perhaps it had nothing to do with him at all) ability to forge other Bachelor stars (Rachel Lindsay, Corinne Olympios, etc), Viall has remained an important part of Bachelor Nation. He still does interviews about the show, his season is still consistently referenced and now… He has a podcast. A podcast I love, hate and can’t stop thinking about.
Let’s start with the bad, because that’s probably what you’re here for. It’s long. So long. The shortest episode (which happens to be the first one) clocks in at 1:15:44. The longest is a hair’s breadth away from two hours. You could watch a full episode of The Bachelor (without commercial breaks) in the time it takes you to get through a single episode of Viall’s podcast.
On top of that, the theme song is a nonsensical and wildly generic techno beat that features a woman whispering, “You’re crazy.” There may be fascinating female guests, but every episode (especially in the beginning) eventually degrades into being just another interview with Viall. At one point, he even claims (with what I assume is a straight face) that being The Bachelor was the hardest thing he’s ever done. Not to mention, every commercial break features him shilling his essential oil company. You can’t make this stuff up. It’s as if a bad joke about a podcast became a podcast.
And I eat it up like candy. Nick Viall’s not dumb. His charisma and ability to be smarter than the average Bachelor is what made him a popular part of the franchise. The rapport he has with his guests gets better with each episode (his episode with Rachel is a must listen). His Bachelor analysis is truly fascinating and very often spot on. He even gives reasonable, well intentioned romance and dating advice to fans during the show’s “Ask Nick” segment. Plus, I love that he named The Viall Files after The X-Files. It’s the last thing I would expect.
Even the things I dislike about the podcast, I’ve grown to enjoy. The length gives it an almost meditative quality and I have the very bad intro song stuck in my head on a daily basis. It’s a wonderful addition to my weekly listening schedule, even if I will continue to make fun of it in my mind and in text messages to my friends.
It’s the best worst thing.