With your favorite franchise returning on Jan. 4, 2016, it's time to get down to business and meet the contestants on Ben Higgins' Bachelor season that you need to know. I don't care how powerful your willpower is — you're not going to be able to hold the distinct differences of these 28 (yup, 28) varied women in your brain at the same time. It's just not possible. But instead of panicking and screaming into your television set at Ben H. to tear up his First Impression Rose because "how can you really know them??", give yourself a leg up here and get to know these women in advance.
I have no way of knowing which contestants will do well and which won't — although one Bustle writer is already convinced that Caila has a really solid shot at the win — so I chose a group of women whom I think fans should keep our eyes on. Whether because they're the first twins in the show's history, or because there's already talk that they're there for the wrong reasons (gasp!), or because I just like them and think we'd get along in real life, I threw their names on this list. If you ask me, these are the 12 women you should be keeping your eyes peeled for coming out of the limos this season.
Amber's a good one to keep your eye on, because this isn't her first time at the rodeo. Not only was Amber on Chris Soules' season of The Bachelor, but she also appeared on Season 2 of Bachelor in Paradise. That makes this Amber's third shot at love, and at 30, she's one of the older women in the competition (listen, I'm not happy about it, but it's true), so I highly doubt she'll be messing around.
Another repeat contender, you might remember the 26-year old chiropractic assistant from San Diego as the runner up on Soules' season. Countdown to one of the women saying it isn't fair that she's back in 3... 2... 1...
3./4. Emily And Haley
Guys, twins! Twins! Emily and Haley's sibling status is also listed as their occupation, so buckle up. These sisters are 22 and from Vegas, so I officially have no idea how this is going to turn out, except that I'll be glued to my screen the entire time. Will Ben like one more than the other? Will he even be able to tell the difference? Will he keep them as a unit? Or keep one and kick off the other? I can't wait to find out.
Jackie was blending into the pack for me like the rest of the 23-year olds from California, right up until the line "I never regret anything" in her bio. Oh hey girl, I see you.
Jami was giving me great vibes already, and then I found out that the Canadian bartender is also friends with Kaitlyn Bristowe, who is one of the only Bachelorette contestants to come out of this franchise with a relationship I actually have faith in. Jami comes through as real in her bio, and is definitely one of my early favorites.
Please let this be the year a contestant of color actually gets taken seriously. Jubilee seems awesome, and she's a war veteran, coming off of four and a half years of active duty. Sh also knows the value of a night in with Netflix and a blanket. Too early for me to propose?
Yo, Laura just has a really inviting face. The 24-year old account executive from Louisville, Kentucky has got waves of genuine energy rolling off her like crazy, and is one of the only women to choose cold weather over hot, so I'm immediately intrigued.
Not only does this 30-year old Texan describe herself as a legit cowgirl, she's also one of the only women on the list who cops to actually approaching men if she's interested — in her own words, "it's not rocket science". Gotta love an unapologetic feminist attitude like that. I'm rooting for you, Maegan.
This girl is my height (5'8"), my age (28), and from my hometown (Portland, Oregon), so she was going to be on my list regardless, but she's also someone I think fans should have their eyes on as a troublemaker, because she says ex-boyfriends would likely say one of her worst attributes is "a tendency to drink too much". Considering how important the cocktail hours are to the Bachelor set-up, that could be an issue to look out for.
The season hasn't even started airing yet, and there's already been concern vocalized that this 23-year old up-and-coming news anchor from Texas might not be here for... you guessed it... the right reasons. I'm sure it won't escape the other women, or Ben himself, that going on The Bachelor would be a great way to further your career in reporting. Not that that's necessarily why Olivia is there, but it'll be on everybody's mind.
Under occupation, Tiara, who's 26 and from Redmond, Washington, is described as a "chicken enthusiast", so I'ma need a little more information on that. And I imagine I'll get it.
And those are the ladies so far! Undoubtedly I've missed someone who will bust out in a big way on the premiere, but these are people I recommend you keep your eye on, if only so we can tweet excitement at each other about it the next day.
Images: NBC (14)