Vanessa's approach to the downright crazy premise of the dating show - you know, casually locking 20 women in a house to fight over a man - was so refreshing that viewers labelled the 27-year-old a national hero and some even called for her to be next season's Bachelorette.
Below, we chat to the Melbourne-based legal secretary - who laughs a lot more than you'd expect - about what really went down at last night's rose ceremony, how she feels about Romy, Cat and Alisha now, and her picks for Nick's final three.
Firstly, I just want to say that the whole office loved how straight-up you were the whole way through the show. How was it watching yourself on TV?
Thank you! Oh, you know in the first episode there was a bit of creative editing and I was like 'whyyy' [laughs], but it is what it is and for the most part, it is how things go down. Obviously, any moments where I'm actually laughing or smiling clearly never made it to air!
Did the ending really go down like that? without you saying goodbye to the other girls?
Omg, no. Last night all the girls were messaging me about it. That's not how it happened, I did not stand there for a full minute like a mute. I was very calm and collected about it, I walked up to Nick and said 'I hope you find whatever and whoever it is you're looking for' and then went back and hugged all the girls, except for Romy.
Obviously, you didn’t have time to fall in love with Nick, but in the time that you did spend with him, did you see potential?
Um, no. Nick is a lovely guy, but he's just not the right person for me and I'm not the right person for him and that's okay.
Romy, Cat and Alisha have been portrayed as bullies on TV, but in real-life were things less intense or more intense?
Yeah, what you're seeing is not even half of what went down. They really are like that. To me, I think that that behaviour is disgusting. Cat, Romy and Alisha get their self-worth and self-validation by belittling, degrading and bullying other people and that's what it is at the end of the day, it's bullying. I'm someone who's very particular, in my normal life, about who I'll associate with and they're just people I'd never spend time with. Even if I didn't like someone, I'd never go out of my way to attack someone and their physical attributes.
I hated how Shannon tried to stick up to them and they totally twisted her words and made her sound like a crazy person
I think the term is 'gaslighting' and they're pretty damn good at it.
As far as Brooke goes, she’s been singled out as a frontrunner from episode one, did you girls have a feeling she had a strong connection with Nick from the get-go?
I mean, did you see my group date?! [Laughs]. Yes, definitely, I do think they have a connection.
Was Cass really as intense as producers are making her out to be?
Obviously, Nick and Cass have a history and that's their business. I think it's a little unfair the way that it's coming across for her. She's such a sweet beautiful, young girl and she doesn't deserve to be made look like that. It's just not fair, she's just trying to fight for this person who she has real feelings for. And you watched last night, Nick obviously does have feelings for her. She's still there, she's still being given roses, and Nick wouldn't - well, I hope he wouldn't - keep her there if it wasn't a mutual feeling.
I think that's the hard part about watching it, every woman has had those feelings for a guy, but it's just not edited and broadcast all over TV
Exactly, surely everyone has been there. She's such a sweetheart and you can imagine how crappy that must have felt for her. I figured out very early that there was a history between her and Nick, but I never brought it up and I'd never mention it to the other girls - that's like throwing a lamb to the wolves.
Do you still talk to any of the women from the show?
I still chat to quite a few. Dasha and Tenille, Em sent me a message last night. Britt and Sophie messaged me last night, Brooke just sent me a message. I've had coffee with Shannon. I did make friends in the house, it's very hard in that environment because you do pick your people - in the house, I really just hung out with Dasha and Tenille. But now that the show is playing out, and people are seeing how I was when I was talking to the producers alone, the girls are kinda like 'oh, she's not in there saying bad or negative things.'
Have you seen that people are saying they want you as the next Bachelorette?
[Laughs]. Yeah, I've seen a couple of things, that's pretty cool.
Would you consider it?
I'd consider anything that came my way!