The premiere of Rachel Lindsay's season of The Bachelorette introduced us to one of the most colorful characters to ever appear on the dating competition: Lucas Yancey, or as he shall henceforth forever be known, Whaboom. Or perhaps more accurately #WHAAABOOOOM (that's three A's, four O's).
Lucas' occupation is listed in his bio as "Whaboom," and as Chris Harrison explained when introducing Lucas last week, "It's a lifestyle. It's an essence. It's who he is. It's a noun. It's a verb. It's an adverb, like you can be whaboom, and you can be whaboomed, and you can whaboom. And you can call somebody a whaboom. It's a lot." Boy howdy, is it ever a lot. In his intro video, Lucas explained its origin — it evolved from "boom," which, sure — and sort of explained its meaning, but I mostly missed it because I was laughing too hard and looking at his ridiculous rubber face.
Mostly what it is is a catchphrase. An extremely loud, incredibly annoying, screamingly hilarious (for now) catchphrase. Seriously, Lucas had me laughing harder than I've ever laughed at The Bachelorette. Every time he shook his face to gather power before exploding into a "WHABOOM!" I lost it. He's like a Super Saiyan whose power is yelling.
He completely took over the premiere with his outrageous antics. He showed up carrying a megaphone, which he didn't need, since he's louder than the ambulance that that one guy rolled up in. It was pretty clear from his ridiculous intro video that he's just on the show for comedy purposes, and then he said one of his testicles was larger than the other and confirmed it.
In fact, I don't think there's ever been a contestant on the show so transparently Not Here For the Right Reasons. He was wearing a shirt with his own self-promotional hashtag on it. That shirt is available to purchase on his website for the low price of $15. The Bachelor and The Bachelorette have become opportunities for individuals to build large social media followings that they can advertise to, and Lucas is obviously trying to build his brand. He's on The Bachelorette to promote his comedy career, and the show is letting him do it. It's a sign of the franchise's continuing loosening up that a guy who makes no pretense of actually being here for love can get screen time. It's like the show is saying "this guy is a clown, and we are in on the joke" in a way that it usually doesn't allow. Or maybe creator Mike Fleiss is taking a cut of his t-shirt sales.
His website describes him as an actor/writer/producer. It features his acting reel, which includes a comedy sketch with Rob Riggle. It also includes a special section for his hashtags. He's also a rugby player — which we saw in his intro — and a real estate investor, which is a cliché job for a Bachelorette guy to have. "Whaboom" is much more interesting.
He's also been doing "whaboom" for a long time. The earliest use of #whaaaabooom (an earlier draft of the hashtag we now know and love) was all the way back in 2012.
"Let the big dogg eat" goes back that far, too. That's his other catchphrase. When he referenced it to Rachel, she answered "I don't know about that yet," which made me have a giggle fit. He has yet another catchphrase, "#burgertyme," that we haven't heard on the show yet, but I'm sure eventually we'll hear all about how any time is #burgertyme when you believe in yourself or whatever.
As if you need more evidence of his transparent fame-mongering, he also appeared on WE's dating reality show Ex Isle last year. He didn't say "whaboom" and he didn't get famous. He was probably like, "I see where I went wrong, and I know what I must do."
One dude, Blake E., who's clearly being set up as one of the season's villains, reacted negatively to #Whaaaboooom, calling Lucas out for Not Being Here For The Right Reasons, which Lucas didn't really dispute.
"I feel that everyone has a little bit of whaboom in them," Lucas said, partially as an explanation and partially just as a non sequitur.
I think after tonight he'll be right. And after two weeks all the whaboom will have left us because we'll be so sick of him, just like Blake E., who has no whaboom in him. But for now, #WHAAABOOOOM!
The Bachelorette airs Mondays at 8/7c on ABC.