Buckle your seatbelts, THGers and card-carrying members of Bachelor Nation. Season 22 is underway, and Arie is on the race of his life.
While The Bachelor spoilers have already revealed much about the outcome this season, Monday's premiere offered our first TV glimpse ...
Following a runner-up finish on The Bachelorette all the way back in 2012, Arie Luyendyk Jr. is back in the driver's seat ... so to speak.
Seeing him in the starring role after five and a half years may please Bachelor Nation ... or not. But either way, it's got people talking.
Is this 36-year-old race car driver, real estate broker and distinguished, graying gentleman finally ready to fall in love again this winter?
We can't say for sure, but ... the spoilers have revealed the OUTCOME OF THE ENTIRE THREE-MONTH SEASON, so there's that.
Hey, you don't really, truly know who Arie picks and if The Bachelor spoilers were on point until the finale, right? You just never know.
But you probably do. Anyway, whether you're a Bachelor spoilers junkie or not, proceed for the recap of the Janu-Arie 1 premiere now!
As you know - or may not know, since this was so long ago now - Emily Maynard rejected Arie Luyendyk Jr. on The Bachelorette finale.
We were treated to quite the retrospective on that, partly so we'd remember who Arie is, and also so we'd remember he's a good guy.
He was SO in love with Emily, we were told, that he sent her his journal even after she got engaged to Jef Holm, hoping it would sway her.
Arie was in the hunt for The Bachelor job the next winter - that went to his fellow competitor Sean Lowe - and on Chris Soules' season.
After those near-misses, he's finally getting his second shot at TV love, and to be perfectly, honest, he's pretty nervous about the journey.
Seeing these 29 girls will help, though.
First we meet Chelsea, 29, a mom from Maine (above). Then Caroline, 26, a realtor from Florida. Then Maquel, 23, a Utah photographer.
Nysha, 30, is an orthopedic nurse and adrenaline junkie. Tia, 26, is a small town Arkansas girl who’s actually friends with Raven Gates.
Kendall, 26, is a taxidermy enthusiast. That's a new one. The youngest contestant, Bekah, does not say her age. That's a new one also.
Marikh, 27, owns an Indian restaurant with her mom in Utah, while Krystal, 29, works as health and fitness coach, and volunteers as well.
After these intros, it's limo time!
Caroline (the Florida realtor) is the first to step out, with this one-liner: “If we do our jobs right maybe we’ll both be off the market.”
Good one. Chelsea, meanwhile, plays hard to get, and leaves him wanting more, assuring Arie, “There’s a lot to get to know.”
Tia (above) gifts Arie a tiny wiener so he remembers she’s from Weiner, Ark. “Please tell me you don’t already have one of these,” she jokes.
Probably a safe bet.
Racing jokes abound, while Bekah shows up in a classic car and says, “I may be young, but I can still appreciate something classic.”
As more and more ladies arrive, we learn there are four Laurens this season and one Maquel. Yes, Maquel, who made quite the entrance.
Her race car arrival instantly raised the stakes for the other women and made them nervous, as did Maquel stealing him away at the party.
Arie's first kiss when to Brittany T., but the coveted first impression rose went to Chelsea, to the dismay of Krystal (and everyone else).
The Maine mom definitely got the most screen time on the premiere, but it remains to be seen if she has a real shot to make the top four.
Sadly, we know more than a half dozen people who won't be there for sure, as all good 29-woman cocktail parties must come to an end.
At the first rose ceremony, Becca K., Marikh, Kendall, Lauren G., Krystal, Bekah, Lauren S., Seinne, Caroline, and Brittany T. get roses.
Bibiana, Annaliese, Jenna, Valerie, Jacqueline, Jenny, Lauren B., Ashley, Tia and Maquel follow, all advancing to fight another round.
Eight down, 21 to go.