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PopWatch Confessional: I took Chris Harrison's dating site At First Sight for a test drive

I was bouncing around on ye olde Interwebs today when I noticed a tweet from Bachelor Pad enemy No. 1 Chris Bukowski informing the showmance-franchise’s beloved (and super-dreamy) host Chris Harrison that he’s joining Harrison’s new dating app At First Sight. My first thought: Why can’t the (semi-)newly single Harrison himself be the one setting up a profile?* My second thought: I gotta see this thing in action!

Keep reading as I take At First Sight for a spin — and send a gentle nudge to a few other celebs I’d like to join me in my “journey” to love online.
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Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette' episode 7

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This week we found our way back to the country of Portugal. The last time we came to Portugal was with Ali and we stayed in the city of Lisbon on the mainland. This visit took us well off the coast, to the small island of Madeira. It’s actually a lot closer to Morocco in Africa than it is to Portugal. Madeira is a small island known for its gardens and amazing hikes.

The week began with Des getting to visit with some friends from last season: Jackie, Lesley, and Catherine. Catherine had a smile on her face, but believe me she was exhausted. Due to some travel complications, she barely made it into town at the last moment and her luggage never actually made it at all. Then she had to hop on a flight the very next day to get back to the States for an event with Sean. Even through that, she was thrilled to get to catch up with her old friends and dish about the five remaining guys. Des also enjoyed the visit with the girls and it put her in a great place going into her dates. READ FULL STORY

Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette' episode 6

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This week we landed in easily one of the greatest and most romantic cities in the world, Barcelona. The guys and Des actually stayed in a quaint little seaside town a short drive from Barcelona called Sitges. When I walked up to find the guys at the beginning of the episode, we were actually on the boardwalk in Sitges. Usually when we go to great cities like this I will spend some time telling you why it’s such an amazing location, but I think Barcelona speaks for itself, and it does so with an incredible Spanish accent. If you get the chance you must spend some time in this city.

Drew got the first one-on-one date this week and he and Des made the short drive to spend the day getting lost in Barcelona. We’ve seen a little bit of Drew but we’ve never seen him like we did on this date. Drew opened up to Des and revealed a lot about his personal life, especially the struggles with his dad. These conversations can sometimes get awkward but Des and Drew really seemed to get each other on a very deep, personal level. The date had a heavy start but it really took off from there. At dinner, Drew really seemed to step out of his comfort zone when he attempted to steal Des away to a private place so he could deliver what Des described as a very passionate kiss. It’s a little hard to steal Des away when we have all our cameras there working, but the sentiment is what’s important. Drew obviously got the rose and is definitely someone to be watched as we continue. READ FULL STORY

'The Bachelorette' host Chris Harrison takes the EW Pop Culture Personality Test -- VIDEO

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The Bachelorette has entered the luxury travel portion of the season, having been to Munich last week and heading to Barcelona tonight. As last Monday’s tear-soaked promo demonstrated, this point in the season is also typically when feelings intensify and hearts get broken — and this year’s Bachelorette Desiree Hartsock seems to bring it out in the guys more than ever, says Chris Harrison.

“This season gets very emotional, and that has everything to do with Des,” notes Harrison. “These guys see that she’s a catch. They really start falling in love with this woman quickly.” He adds, “From here on out, these guys are laying it all on the line. … We definitely have some Mesnicks coming up — I don’t know if it’s a full Mesnick, but we have some pretty solid Mesnicks coming up.”

Before Harrison teases what’s to come in Spain and beyond, he sat down to take EW’s Pop Culture Personality Test. Which pop stars does he guiltily admit takes up prime real estate on his iPod? Which iconic geek franchise made its way into two of his answers? And what movie makes him do the full Mesnick? Watch below. READ FULL STORY

Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette' episode 5

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I want to start off this week sharing some great news that many of you have hopefully already heard about. Mike Fleiss, the creator of this franchise, and myself, have helped create a dating site called At First Sight. The app is currently available on iPhone and Android devices and will be available online very soon. For over a decade, people have come up to me and asked how they could be on the show or if I could help them find love. Well, this site, which has been many years in the making, takes what we’ve learned from years of doing this show and put it into an amazingly useful, entertaining and safe site. Download At First Sight and check out the video profiles, then take a minute and make your own. I’d love to know what you think.

Now, let’s jump into this week’s episode with Des and the boys in Munich, Germany. I need to start off by apologizing to a fellow host and the German people. For several days everywhere I went people were raising a glass and saying “Probst.” I like Jeff Probst, he’s a great guy and I respect his skills and his many Emmys, but hearing everybody toast that guy when I walked in the room was more than I could take. I learned later the German word for “cheers” is “prost” and in no way relates to Jeff Probst. I only wish I had learned this before verbally assaulting many good German people. With that little misunderstanding settled, it was time to move the guys into their hotel. As you can tell it was a little chilly this week in Munich, but the city is absolutely beautiful. I’d love to tell you what hotel we stayed in because it was incredible, but as you heard I couldn’t even pronounce it, much less spell it. If you couldn’t tell my German is, as they say, “no bueno.”  READ FULL STORY

Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette' episode 4

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It’s always great when I get to walk into the mansion and let the guys know that it’s time to pack their bags and hit the road. It’s also fun to see how excited they are when they learn where we’re headed. Our first stop on this trip around the world with Des is Atlantic City, New Jersey. We stayed at the beautiful new Revel hotel.

Brad got the first date this week and it didn’t exactly go well. You could quickly see that he and Des had no connection. Des is big on chemistry, and unfortunately they had none. When you add to all this the fact that he’s a caring dad, Des really felt compelled to let him go as soon as she knew there wasn’t anything serious between them. The only sad part was how many stairs Des made him climb to get to the top of that lighthouse just so she could dump him. In all seriousness, it was obviously the right thing to do, because at this point there are guys here that she does see a possible future with.

The group date this week was near and dear to my heart. The last time I was in Atlantic City was back in 2004 when I hosted the Miss America pageant for the first time. I’m extremely excited the pageant is coming back to where it all began when it airs on Sept. 15 on ABC — and I’ll be hosting again, now for the fifth time. I loved that the reigning Miss America, Mallory Hagen, was able to join us and help out with our first ever The Bachelorette‘s Mr. America pageant. Mallory has been a great ambassador for Miss America and she shared her personality and wicked sense of humor with everybody. I always enjoy when we get to do public dates, but to actually get to host an event like this for a live audience in an Atlantic City showroom was awesome. We had a packed house and the crowd was great.

As for the actual competition, well, let’s just say there are things that will never be erased from my brain. Chris walking out in high heels with hula-hoops around his arms was just one of many bad images. And don’t even get me started on the bathing suit competition. I have to admit I was a little surprised Kasey won the crown. I thought Zak W. might have won with his song; it played well with the crowd and it seemed to impress Des. At the after-party Ben continued to draw Des in while he manages to push the guys further away. Zak W. pulled the guitar out again, which is sometimes a sketchy move, but it worked and he got the rose.

James got the final one-on-one date this week. No, I’m not going to even get into the shots of him eating strawberries while in the bath. Like most of high school, let’s just pretend it didn’t happen and move on. This was easily one of my favorite dates this season. I was so happy that while in New Jersey we were able to shed some light on the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. I’m even more proud of the fact that we promote an organization like the Red Cross that does so much for victims of devastating events like Sandy or the recent tornadoes in Oklahoma. I hope all of you will take a minute and go to www.redcross.org/thebachelorette to find out how you can help rebuild the Jersey Shore and Moore, Oklahoma.

It was very cool that not only did we show the destruction, but we also introduced you to an amazing couple, Jan and Manny. Des and James gave them their date and it was beautiful to see how grateful they were for this night. I went over to the Foundation Room at the House of Blues before the date and our art department was so happy to be setting up for a regular couple that would get such a treat out of a fancy night out. There is so much love between these two, and the book of restored pictures from the Red Cross was just priceless. I was also lucky enough to spend some time with the talented Darius Rucker that night. I’ve been fortunate enough to get to know Darius over the last few years and I can tell you as talented as he is, it doesn’t compare to what a generous, great guy he is. Manny and Jan’s date was such an emotional date, you almost forget about Des and James — but they had an interesting night, too. I’m curious to know what all of you thought about James admitting to Des that he cheated on his college girlfriend. Do you think honesty was really the best policy here? I know Des ended up giving him the rose, but do you think she’ll ever forget what he told her? It will be interesting to see how that affects their relationship in the weeks to come.

The cocktail party and rose ceremony were held in suites at the Revel Hotel. The view from the rose ceremony was stunning as you could see the entire Atlantic City boardwalk. Zack K. was sent home this week and you know what that means? There’s only one Zak now, so Zak W. can officially drop the W and just be good ol’ Zak. As you saw, Atlantic City was just a jumping off point as we now head over to Europe and Munich, Germany. We’ve talked for years about going to Germany and I’m glad we finally did. It’s a beautiful and historic city — but it turns out it’s also a very dramatic place to visit, too. Or maybe these guys just made it that way. Ben will continue to stir things up, but James is really the one who will step into the crosshairs next week with some ill-advised words. These guys are really falling for Des and are very protective of her, and this is going to lead to some explosive confrontations. We’ll see you next week in Munich, and in the meantime you can always reach me via Twitter and Instagram @chrisbharrison.

More Bachelorette on EW:
Bachelorette recap: Jersey Boys

Plus check out Desiree’s blog on people.com

 

Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette' episode 3

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Lying, cheating, deceitful pig! Anytime that sentence is uttered you know there’s some drama. We will get to the slick used car salesman that is Brian in just a bit, but first let me say I’m glad this season has officially begun. As of this week, the gloves came off and it is on.

The week began with the group dodgeball date. The day started off innocently enough in a small private little gym where the guys got absolutely pummeled with balls from professional dodge ballers. (Who knew there was such a thing?) Let me tell you, I watched the practice portion of this date and those pros could bring it. The guys were so relieved when I came in and told them they’d be battling each other. That is until I happened to mention it would be a very public display. By the time the guys arrived at the open-air mall there was already a huge crowd gathered. I love these public dates where I get to walk around and visit with our fans. Des and I had a great time spending about a half hour walking around the arena talking and taking pictures with everybody before the guys arrived. The guys probably weren’t as excited about the crowd once they saw the very tight uniforms they had to wear.  READ FULL STORY

Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette' episode 2

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I hope all of you are about to read this for the right reasons. I also hope that this week none of you decided to take a shot every time you heard that phrase, because if you did, you are not going to have a good Tuesday or probably Wednesday either.

Before I dive into this hip-hop episode I want to answer a couple questions I got from your comments. Somebody asked how the guys spend their days when they’re not with Des on dates. Well, they do what they want around the house — hang out by the pool, work out, sleep or all of the above. Another question was about whether the guys or the girls are cleaner as a group. This is tough because it really depends on the season, but overall it’s surprising to note that the men are cleaner. Maybe it’s not as much of a surprise because the women pack much more stuff, and don’t get me started on the state of the bathroom when the ladies are in the house. There are times when the guys aren’t much better, but ladies you win this battle — or lose it actually. READ FULL STORY

Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette' season premiere

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Oh, how good it feels to be back. If we had to pick a theme for the first night we would have to have to steal a page from Jeopardy! and go with the category “Names That Begin With ‘M’ or ‘B’.” The season started off a little differently with Desiree; it’s important to know where she came from so you can fully appreciate and understand where this journey will take her. I enjoyed the more casual style of starting out by sitting down to talk with Des at her house. It definitely put her at ease and made her more emotionally available and open. I could tell she was genuinely excited to be the Bachelorette and truly ready to find love.

The arrivals are always just a bit awkward but it seems even more so when it’s the Bachelorette and it’s a bunch of guys piling out of the limos. Guys are just completely out of their comfort zone. Some of the highlights from my perspective that night were, of course, Zak who arrived shirtless and asked Des if she would accept his abs. Despite later stripping down and diving in the pool, Zak got a rose. (It’s worth noting that Des had a tough time figuring out where to put it.) READ FULL STORY

On the scene at the 2013 Webby Awards: What you didn't see at home

The Webby Awards aren’t the world’s shortest award ceremony — including a dinner break, the ceremony takes the standard three hours — but they feel like it. Part of that is the famous five-word limit on acceptance speeches (like Humans of New York’s Brandon Stanton: “Still can’t pay my rent”); part of it is just how fast everyone moves. At last night’s 17th annual ceremony, host Patton Oswalt was a speedy presence, which is why (I assume) he felt the need to jokingly remind us that, no really, he’s out of shape.

The atmosphere inside the Cipriani’s cavernous Wall Street ballroom was decidedly different than it was for anyone streaming the show at home: All the funniest jokes didn’t get the best reactions, Frank Ocean baffled most of the room, and The Onion guys were maybe a little rude?

Here’s what you didn’t see this year…

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