This Monday, the nation's favorite annual fertility ritual will kick off once more on ABC at 8/7c as The Bachelor returns and new hunk-for-sale Nick Viall begins squiring 30 lovely ladies (a jump up from the usual 25) until he finds the one with whom he will share the rest of his life (or at least a photo spread in US Weekly.)

The 21st season of the series will no doubt feature the same adrenaline-spiked adventure dates, emotional meltdowns and anthropological insight as its predecessors, but it's unique in one important respect: Nick has already failed to find love three times on the Bachelor franchise, so contestants will come in knowing more about him than any other previous Bachelor.

The Bachelor: Everything you need to know to start watching in Season 21

There's no second chances at making a first impression: Will Nick's reputation help or hurt him with his bumper crop of hotties?

Here's a handy top ten list of things you have to know about Nick, whether you're debating marrying him or simply rooting for him.

10. He gets off to a good start

Software salesman Nick, from Waukesha Wisconsin, first appeared on Andi Dorfman's season of The Bachelorette, and won the first impression rose on his first night in the Himbo Harem.

9. He always finishes second

Nick framed himself as a gentle romantic during Andi's season, wooing her with poems, introducing her to his adorable little sister and making it all the way to the final two. Then Andi chose Josh Murray over Nick, breaking up with him before he could propose.

8. He can play the victim

Usually getting so deeply dumped leaves the runner-up with a ton of residual goodwill from the audience, but Nick totally burned through that when he confronted Andi live on air with the infamous question: "If you weren't in love with me, why did you make love with me?"

The statement horrified fans by both breaking the sacred silence that surrounds the Fantasy Suites and because "making love" is a super cringe-worthy term even middle-aged aunties find off-putting.

7. He's persistent

Nick weaseled his way into the next season of The Bachelorette by hotly pursuing the feisty Kaitlyn Bristowe despite not being on the original roster of contestants. Despite knowing all the men on her season of The Bachelorette did not think it was fair to allow Nick to compete, a few stolen kisses convinced Kaitlyn to bring Nick (and endless drama) on board despite their objections.

6. He was involved in one of the biggest uproars in the franchise's history

Kaitlyn and Nick then famously had sex on the show before even getting the official go-ahead Fantasy Suite key, sending shockwaves through Bachelor Nation and prompting what amounted to a public shaming for Kaitlyn. During this period Nick was also wearing bow ties all over the place like a crazy person.

5. For real, he always finishes second

Despite getting busy early in the season, Nick was AGAIN the runner up, with Kaitlyn publicly rejecting his proposal and choosing Shawn Booth instead!

4. He still thinks he can find love on ABC (or just loves the attention)

Nick reacted to this double dose of rejection by bouncing back, big time: he appeared on Bachelor in Paradise tan, trim, jacked, lookin' cross FIT if you know what I mean, and launched a legendary redemption arc.

3. Seriously, he always finishes second

Josh Murray, yes, the same guy Andi chose over Nick, was on Bachelor in Paradise. Of course, Josh and Nick ended up pursuing the same woman, Amanda, who unquestionably chose Josh.

This actually got him a lot of that priceless audience goodwill back.


2. He was grooming himself to be the new Bachelor

Later, when Josh was truly acting a fool, Nick appeared cool, calm and collected when taking him on, like a man arguing with a boy. Nick was also quietly supporting fan favorite Ashley Ianoetti and giving her wise advice every other episode. Call it kinder editing or humility gained via three public rejections in three years, but by the end of Bachelor in Paradise, Nick's image was officially rehabilitated.

1. He's loved and hated

Nick's possibly the biggest underdog to ever fill the role of Bachelor, and that in itself seems to be winning him a lot of support. No less an expert on transcending public break-ups than Jennifer Aniston apparently loves Nick, gushing about him on Jimmy Kimmel. He's poised to be the most empathetic Bachelor in series history. But then again, some in BN can't stand him and just want him to leave.

So do you love him or hate him? If you want to dig a little deeper, tune in for an long preview special called "Countdown to Nick" Sunday, Jan. 1st at 8/7c on ABC ahead of the Jan. 2 premiere, also at 8/7c on ABC.