The Bachelor has only been back for two weeks, but it's already giving me so much to think about. Plus, I'm already playing favorites, and my favorite is Ashley S. Honestly, if you don't think Ashley S. is the most entertaining The Bachelor contestant, you haven't been paying attention. Between her long-winded, nonsensical rants about peeling back the layers of an onion and explaining to her fellow contestants that she just found the truth like "boom," it's understandable that you'd be wondering, "Is Ashley S. crazy, or is she a really good actress?" Originally, I could have been persuaded that this was all an act and Ashley was just trying to make sure she had her due camera time. But now? I'm pretty sure this is really who Ashley S. is. And honestly, I'm not that surprised Chris kept Ashley on The Bachelor for at least another week.
In his People blog post, Chris explained it this way: She's beautiful, sweet, and "not that crazy," adding that she had previously confided in Chris that the experience of being on The Bachelor was difficult for her, which made him afford her a few more extra chances he may not have given to someone else who wasn't as straightforward with him. That's a relief, but also maybe just drop the word "crazy" from your vocab, Chris. It's not cool.
But beyond Chris' reasoning, there are a lot of other reasons Chris could be keeping Ashley around on the show — and I wouldn't even be surprised if she survived a few more weeks. Here are a few possible explanations for her staying power:
1. She's Good TV
As much as I hate to think that The Bachelor is rigged, there have to be parts of it that are. It's a money-making machine, and it didn't get that way by pure kismet. The producers are obviously pulling strings, and once they find out that someone like Ashley S. is ridiculously entertaining, she's obviously not going anywhere. People are talking about her, and I, for one, cannot wait to see her on next week's episode. It's all awesome for the people who make money from The Bachelor, so why not encourage (or blatantly tell) Chris to keep the roses coming?
2. Chris Is Curious About Where She's Going With This Schtick
Just as all of us watching at home are curious about Ashley's next move, I'm sure Chris is feeling the same. If he sends her home, the story ends. If he keeps her around, he gets to find out what else she has up her sleeve.
3. It Is Staged & Chris Is In On It
Everyone, put on your bitter, skeptic Bachelor glasses for a second. What if Ashley's been acting from the beginning, and everyone at The Bachelor plus Chris knows and wants to keep it going to bring in viewers? I'm not saying this is happening, I'm saying it's not that far-fetched.
4. She's Not Always Screaming "Mesa Verde" But That's All We Get To See
In just two hours a week, there's no way The Bachelor can give us everything. In the less entertaining moments that happen on the show, maybe Ashley is a totally different person. Maybe the ridiculousness that we see are rare moments for Ashley, and in the rest of her interactions with Chris, she's someone he could really fall in love with. It's possible!
Images: Rick Rowell/ABC; Giphy (4)