The Bachelorette Australia – Jackson: "I Wasn't Expecting To Stand Out"

The Bachelorette delivered yet another hit season featuring former Gogglebox star Angie Kent and her search for love from over 20 bachelors. Sales manager from Sydney, Jackson Garlick, was among the men vying for Angie’s heart, and he spoke with me about his time in the mansion.

This December, all month long, I will be interviewing multiple Australian Reality TV participants, to celebrate Australian Reality TV and the competitors fighting for the title and ultimate grand prize on offer.

Jackson entered The Bachelorette competition as a sales manager for his family’s business, ‘Garlo’s Pies’. An audience favourite for the season, he was on the search for love and quickly developed a romantic connection with Angie. Despite being the youngest contestant at 25, he was one of the first to enjoy a single date with the 31 year-old television star. After surviving several Rose Ceremonies, he made it to the final four where he and Angie returned to his hometown so she could meet his family. At the visit however, he failed to truly express how he felt about Angie to her, and coupled with his Dad’s abrasive chat with Angie, Jackson was eliminated before he could make the final three. Just over a month since the show concluded on screen, Jackson talks about his experience and watching the show back, just for Reality Review.

Jackson (front row, second from left) after a Rose Ceremony, among eight other bachelors competing for former Gogglebox star, Angie Kent’s heart.
IMAGE: NETWORK 10

Hi Jackson! Filming wrapped a few months ago but the show only just concluded last month. How are you doing now that it’s all over?

I really couldn’t prepare myself for watching myself back on TV. Even though filming wrapped months ago, I did feel myself experiencing some of the feelings that I experienced during filming. It definitely drove some key learnings home watching myself back.

Let’s talk about that first arrival, what was it like meeting Angie and delivering her a meat pie that she was allergic to? That’s got to be an incredibly heart-sinking feeling!

I was nervous enough about meeting Angie for the first time, then I had to carry a silver cloche in without dropping it, and eventually finding out Angie was allergic to the gluten and also didn’t eat meat. I can only describe my entrance as an absolute debacle. I’m lucky Angie didn’t hold that against me and send me home that night.

You scored a single date quite early on in the show, the first if we don’t count Carlin’s yellow rose. What was your immediate reaction to claiming the date and have it quite early on in the competition?

I was so surprised when I received that first date. It had just come off the back of our first group date where I had the single photo shoot with Angie. I wasn’t expecting to stand out amongst 18 other guys so quickly and being picked on one of the first dates reinforced the belief that I had to keep being myself.

Something Angie was quite weary of was the age difference between you and her, you actually being the youngest man in the competition. Did you consider this difference as a potential problem down the road? Not just to win the competition itself but actually in the hypothetical relationship with Angie after the show.

I think the age gap is only relevant if there’s a massive incongruence in the maturity of both parties and where they are both at in their own stages of life. With Angie, I felt like there wasn’t much separating us in terms of maturity, and we had both been quite focussed on our careers recently and were looking to find someone to settle down with. In the early stages of the experience, this did weigh heavily on my mind though because I hadn’t had a chance to have a deep discussion with her without being interrupted by other blokes during the Cocktail Parties.

There was quite a bit of drama about mid-way through the competition between Jamie and Carlin and some other of the contestants. What was your impression of this and did you worry something could have turned on you?

There’s a lot of downtime in the mansion and sometimes comments can become misconstrued, simply because of one guy mishearing another, or because there is a deeper resentment due to jealousy. I always reminded myself that there’s a difference between “guys looking for Angie time, and guys looking for air time”. I made sure everything I did was to get more time with Angie, rather than get more screen time because of any drama I could stir up.

Ciarran had to leave the show after a family emergency prevented him from staying. He was quite a front runner to win the show, so how did you and the other men really react when you learned this great guy had gone, but it may have helped your chances at winning Angie’s heart?

Ciarran’s departure was a big shock to us all. I definitely felt for Ciarran because I love my family myself and if that happened to me I would have probably done the same. I think all of the remaining boys were sad to see Ciarran go but also relieved that we had one less front runner around.

You went all the way to the Hometown visit, that’s an incredible achievement in the context of the show. Going into the visit, you called yourself the ‘underdog’. So what was your main focus to ensure you would progress further in the show against the other three who definitely had more time shared with Angie?

Heading into Hometowns, I wanted to show Angie what I was like in my own surroundings. I was trying to picture a future with Angie based on how I lived my life, what I did for work, and what family I surrounded myself with. If I could have done anything differently, Angie was probably interested in my own context, but wanted to hear more about how I felt about her because I hadn’t done the best job in explaining this to her as my feelings developed.

The visit didn’t work out because you were the one eliminated after a pretty intense exchange between your parents and Angie about work and her intentions. Do you think the Hometown visit was a missed opportunity leading to your elimination or, at the end of the day, were you and Angie never really going to be the final result of the competition?

I can’t blame my family for cutting off my chances with Angie (although I do joke with them that’s the reason I did not receive a rose). I believe if I could have communicated my feelings towards Angie better throughout the whole experience, I may not have been the one that got sent home at hometowns. Truth be told, most of the hometown dates looked rocky and I think Angie just wanted to hear how I felt about her.

Angie only ever gave roses to five people outside of the rose ceremony: the top four, and Ciarran. What do you make of that and did the other bachelors ever voice a concern about their chances if they never spent any alone time with her?

I think the reason why Angie only gave roses to those guys was because those were the only guys that went on single dates. There isn’t much of an opportunity to get a rose in advance of a rose ceremony unless you get taken on a single date. The other Bachelor’s were disenfranchised at some stages because they weren’t selected for single dates but we have to acknowledge that Angie isn’t trying to get to know everyone equally. Angie was looking for someone to spend the rest of her life with and if that means giving multiple dates to one bachelor over others, that’s OK in my eyes.

We saw that Angie ultimately chose Carlin to be her partner at the end of the show. You really bonded with a lot of the guys so what do you think about her ultimate decision and them as a couple?

I was fortunate to be in the mansion for nearly two months. I really appreciated the friendship I had with Carlin and the other guys, which made it quite difficult as my feelings progressed for Angie. I really do think Carlin is a genuine bloke (also he’s probably the best looking amongst us) and Angie’s decision, although tough, would have been the right one for how she felt at the time and looking into the future.

We’ve seen on social media that you’re still pretty close with some of the guys from the show. What kind of a bond does a show like The Bachelorette form when you’re all competing for the same girl’s heart?

The Bachelorette is really a unique experience. It’s this ‘shared experience’ that I can’t really talk about with my other friends. So having friendships come off the back of the show is a positive, even though I wasn’t the one that ended up with Angie. Heading into the experience, I didn’t have many expectations because I was quite anxious to see if I would stand out from the pack. In the beginning, you are cheering for your mates when they get selected on dates because you have developed a closer bond with the boys (due to living together), than you had with Angie. However as time went on, I developed feelings and grew a little jealous when others would be selected on dates over me.

What’s next for Jackson? Is there anything up and coming we can look forward to for you?

I’m straight back into the pie business (HAHA, no rest for the wicked). However I have laid relatively low key after leaving the show as I have been focusing on my football and university studies. There’s been a lot of requests for vegan gluten-free pies, so I might have to get a move on with that.

– JACKSON GARLICK, THE BACHELORETTE CONTESTANT
View this post on Instagram

Gender Bender Bingo? Mmmmyes please

A post shared by Jackson Garlick (@jacksongarlick) on

Jackson shared this pic with friend and fellow contestant Ciarran earlier this month on his Instagram page.
Jackson and Angie during their single date on The Bachelorette.
IMAGE: NETWORK 10

A huge thank you to Jackson for a really genuine and great chat about his time on the show. All the best for the future, Jackson!

You can watch all of Jackson’s time on The Bachelorette and previous seasons both on 10play and 10 All Access. The show also returns for another hit season in 2020!

As we countdown to Christmas and look forward to the new year I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas! I’ll see you soon!

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