Group ThinkApril 6, 2016

Bachelor NZ Group Think, Week Five: That was actually pretty racist


After week five on The Bachelor NZ, some of the greatest minds in the country* assemble to talk about the big issues including Gabs’ nastiness, Naz’ nastiness, and Jordan’s nasty striped singlets.

Madeleine Chapman on the casual racism

Naz, Naz, Naz. She’s all over the internets with her hit list and her narking. Everyone wants to see Naz brought down a peg. Last night, The Bachelor delivered on this want with a slice of casual racism.

Naz has had a rough go of it from the start. It began with this suspicious think-piece after the premiere, questioning Naz’s name and past. They were wondering why she chose to be listed as “Naz” and not her full name “Nazanin” – as if to suggest that having the name “Nazanin” is indicative of dodgy behaviour. A reference to her birth country of Iran was included, for no apparent reason.

Anyone with a name that is remotely ‘ethnic’ will know exactly why Naz chose to shorten her name. People suck at pronouncing names. If your name is not 100% White English, it will definitely be pronounced wrong, no matter how simple it is.

Just look at all the place names in New Zealand. Taupo, Tauranga, Wairarapa. It almost sounds pretentious to pronounce these names correctly if you’re white, that’s how little effort New Zealanders have put into learning a name.

If you are introduced to a Pacific Islander with a one syllable name, I can almost guarantee that that is merely a fraction of their full name, chosen to make it easier on everyone. My Aunty Henga legally added an ‘n’ to her name, because everyone pronounced it wrong even after being taught how to say it.


Which brings us to last night’s episode. Naz is sitting next to Gabrielle, Kate, and Erin when Gabrielle asks Naz “So what is your full name again?” Weird that they don’t know, since they’re constantly talking shit about her. Before she can respond, a mysterious voice says “Nazareth.”

Is it just me or is that pretty racist? Sort of like if a brown man introduced himself as “Mo” and you immediately started calling him “Māori”? Except maybe that wasn’t a good example because so many people still incredibly pronounce it “Meowri”.

Naz ignores her and replies, surprisingly polite, “It’s Nazanin.” Gabs repeats the name and still manages to make it sound off.

Then that same voice pipes back in with “Nazareth it is, not Naz.” All the other girls crack up before Gabs repeats “Nazareth” in a surprised tone and cracks up again at the idea that someone would name their daughter Nazareth which, in Naz’s case, they didn’t.

There’s something nasty about the whole scene that made me want to forgive Naz for all her narking. Trying and failing to grasp a foreign name is one thing, but completely disregarding someone’s birth name and mocking it in a racist manner is actually just disrespectful.

The Bachelor not only kept this scene in the show but they made it a highlight clip. Was it to highlight a funny moment in the show? Because it wasn’t funny, and it definitely wasn’t to garner sympathy for Naz because she’s too far gone at this point.

Whatever the reason, it was an uncomfortable reminder of the casual racism that is everywhere in New Zealand.

Go Nazanin.

Anny Ma on the 10 right reasons

I’m really confused. Not like Claudia was when she was evicted from the house confused, but more like everybody when Naz came back from her date with a rose confused. After their cliche water date, we saw Naz and Bore-dan’s – sorry, I mean Jordan’s – connection deepening to the point of telepathy.

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I spent the entirety of both episodes on Tinder trying to make the show more interesting, but then I realised “why swipe left on all of NZ when you could be figuring out all of the right reasons, Anny?” I’ve saved you all the hard yakka and have put a lot of brain power into this.

I honestly can’t think of any reason why you’d want to be there. However, I’ve investigated and identified what these “right reasons” are:

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#1 To Find True Love with Jordan

Jordan said that he was worried Naz was only in it to win cos she’s hella competitive. From that, I deduce that the #1 right reason must be to find love with Jordan – the man whose wardrobe only offers striped tank tops and unbuttoned suits.

#2 Wearing Heaps of Cool Dresses

The dresses for the rose ceremonies have been really eye-catching, and I’ve always wanted to dress like I’m off to my 6th form ball again, so these dresses offer a tempting and nostalgic trip through the fashion ages.

#3 Going to Hawaii

This one needs no explanation. I really want to go to Hawaii. Everybody looks like they’re having a great time.

#4 Writing a Thesis on Reality Dating Shows

Hello, Rebecca.

#5 Making 20 New Gal Pals

It looks like everybody is having a grand old time with each other when they’re not crying, yelling, backstabbing, or lying, I guess?


#6 Getting Heaps More Instagram Followers So You Can Get Paid To Promote Waist Trainers and Teatox

Pretty self-explanatory. Look at all the free crap the B1 gals got.

#7 Going to Brisbane

It wouldn’t be a NZ reality show if it didn’t involve a trip across the ditch packaged as the ultimate cool experience.

#8 Get A Few Weeks Off Work

I mean, don’t we all want to take time off work, like all the time?

#9 To Get On Naz’s Hit List

It seems like a really great place to be, and it would be a bloody honour to jump on there. Extra points for being at the top of it.

#10 To Get Talked About Heaps on NZ’s Oldest and Most Prestigious TV Website The Spinoff

Well, this website is the Richie McCaw of the internet.

Jack Tippler texts someone who isn’t his mum

Texts from someone during The Bachelor who definitely isn’t my mum.

They need to change his ‘pensive’ outfit of red and white striped singlet and Hawaiian shorts! Or were all those shots filmed at the same time. A pensive shoot!

I think my 7 years or so of film/TV work has caused my over-thinking of every aspect onscreen. Spot on point from that person who definitely isn’t my Mum, though. The striped singlet has had an incredible work out this season. It has now had more screen-time than Naz talking about the hit list.

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Well there were big sparks!!

Sent immediately followed the budget blowout that was the fireworks show. I’ll be honest, pretty low hanging fruit as far as a joke goes.

Storm needs to wrangle a date of her own…

Pre-Storm date selection.

Tears = rose.

Post-Storm heart to heart tear festival.

Goodbye Sarah

Pre-rose ceremony. Interesting to get a big call like this from this person who definitely isn’t my Mum – I usually wouldn’t expect such a big call. Love the enthusiasm though.

He’s got the squeeze from above. She’s the only one causing drama

Naz gets a rose, surely Jordan knows what’s up here. I’m with my mystery txter on this one. Long may we have Naz in the house to keep Jordan abreast of who’s here for the right reasons. The producers are on the right track keeping Naz around.


Shari is gone! Princess shakka-brah, the lady of the diamond necklace, my favorite cocktail party chatter is out. I was too distraught to watch her and Jordan’s goodbye.

Alice Brine’s ten thoughts from the week

1. Heads up to anyone living in modern society: In real life women don’t actually bicker and fight like this over men. We’re all really busy doing other things like running the UN.

2. Last week I suggested that Batch may actually be a colonial man who is struggling to fit into modern society after recently arriving in 2016. This week’s episodes have confirmed that. I’m confident that Batch has been living in an underground bunker and is from the year 1836. He also definitely comes from one of those cults where they got heaps of wives each.

3. “Shari has a sense of humour and I think that’s just adorable.” I don’t normally like to drink on a week night, but after I heard Batch utter those words I decided I would drink an entire bottle of wine by myself in under five minutes.

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4. The concept of a woman having a sense of humour is clearly very new to Batch. As a stand up comedian who chose to be a woman whilst in the womb, I got extremely angry watching this particular episode and wrote out a lot of tweets in all caps. See @alicebrine for hard core evidence.

5. Shari is legit funny and she makes good gags constantly. Batch never knows what to do when this happens. I assumed originally it was because he does not have a sense of humour himself which is undeniably the case. However, it’s also because Batch comes from a time where women do not speak and any woman who so much as utters a pun is burned in a pit and fed to the witches.

6. Seriously bro, say that a woman having a sense of humour is adorable one more time.

7. Batch of course kicks Shari off the show. If only Batch had grown up in modern society, he would have realised that he was making a huge mistake. He’s intimidated by the fact that she’s funnier than he will ever be and has no idea what to do. We can’t blame him though, he’s from 1836 and he just doesn’t know any better.

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8. Batch is on a date with one of the other ones. All of a sudden they get next level excited about a super average sea turtle that’s not even that old looking. The producers decided to make it even more exciting by playing ill fitting EDM music in the background which was a great call on their part that made heaps of sense.

9. “ I heard that you were on Lord Of The Rings.” “ Yes. Pretty exciting. I was a film student and they needed some extras.” “ Oh my god! You were on lord of the rings! That’s amazing!” – No you’re wrong. Being on LOTR is not amazing. In this country being on LOTR is basically the same thing as having an IRD number.

10. I made a tweet about how Batch and the Baes kept talking about the view of the ‘misty sunset.” and it was reminding me of that mint song by Che Fu called ‘Misty Frequencies’ and then Che Fu liked that tweet.

Keep going!