I'll try to keep this short (impossible).
Chris Harrison informs the harem that this week there will be 3 dates--2 group dates and one 1:1 date.
The group date starts with the quotation "it's all about the ring" and these ladies have watched enough episodes of the show they are appearing on to deduce that "the ring" probably isn't a blood diamond, but rather a wrasslin' ring. The crew is Maquel (uber blonde Utah gal), Jacqueline (low key brunette who will probably get sent home before she embarrasses her family, which is pretty solid), Tia (Arkansan brunette), Mahrik (girl who I'm thinking perhaps doesn't bring much to the table since she seems to be on the listening end of a LOT of annoying ladies' ramblings), Lauren B. (blonde who hasn't done much this season), Bekah M. (aka Baby Rizzo), Bibiana (America's sweetheart straight outta Miami), Krystal (who LOST me as a fan and also should really breathe from her diaphragm to project bettter).
The ladies suit up in yoga pants and sports bras, hop into some limos, and arrive at a boxing ring for GLOB--GORGEOUS LADIES of BACHELOR!! Training them are 2 surprise guests--original GLOW wrestling ladies!! I WISH that the producers had reached out to actresses from the Netflix series GLOW, but I guess that ABC doesn't necessarily want to promote Netflix. Angelina and Ursula, the GLOW Veterans, and EXTREMELY MEAN to Bibiana and Tia for whatever reason. The brunette veteran takes it all VERY seriously and mocks Bibiana's name, then pulls Tia's hair. As T and Bibs cry on some nearby stairs, Bekah and Maquel practice their fake wrestling moves with great flourishes. Tia and Bibiana decide to help each other out and admit that they don't want to quit because they want to "LOOK strong, independent." Whatever it takes, I suppose.
|welcome to your group date!!!!|
The ladies are assigned wrestling alter egos and they are:
BEKAH: Sex Kitten (and yes, kitten--because she is v. young)
TIA: Southern Belle
BIBIANA: Bridezilla (Godzilla headpieces and all--brutal)
MAQUEL: Lunch Lady (HUH?)
KRYSTAL: Cougar (producers are throwing shade about her age and I aint mad at it)
JACQUELINE: Pageant Girl or something that is probably related to whatever personality she may or may not have because she definitely has NOT revealed ANYTHING yet.
LAUREN B.: huh who? The blonde girl? Listen there aint enough time to get everyone on camera at every group date, OK? Also she's a pink leopard? Is her wrestling alter ego, Claire's Accessories Cat?
MARIKH: Gold something?
|Actual photo of Maquel during her wrestling match|
"Prettyboy Pitbull" King (who we last saw during Rachel's season of The Bachelotte because Bach contestants NEVER MOVE ON)!!! He fights against Arie, who dons an eye mask and adopts the wrestling persona of the "Kissing Bandit" (PLEASE STOP WITH THIS NIGHTMARE JOKE, ABC!). They do some moves and Kenny shows off his hot bod, which is inordinately better than Arie's pasty flesh sack. Arie wins because it's in his contract.
The ladies pair up and tangle, with Bekah and Maquel REALLY selling it, which is both surprising and pathetic.
Before you know it, this wrestling group date is over and the gang is all cleaned up for the afterparty and in a move that we can only call "rich people glamorizing and fetishizing poverty," the afterparty is in an assortment of TRAILERS! Oh I kid, I kid. Classic airstream trailers are cute, but I must admit that I'm tired of super wealthy people thinking it is SO CHARMING and CUTE to live in a TINY HOUSE!! Have you seen articles about the tiny house "TREND" that is rocking the nation? Ummm for some people, that's just called LIFE.
But I am getting sidetracked by the inherent violence of capitalism and ya know what I should be focusing on--Krystal's crushed velvet romper that is PROFOUNDLY unflattering! Krystal is a beautiful girl with a great figure--what is going on here!? Krystal and Arie have some alone time in a trailer and she asks him flat out how she should handle these group dates--hang back or come and get him? He says to kick back, but come and get him when she needs attention. Great non-answer, bro!
Bibiana and Arie have 1:1 time and she explains that she's respectful to others, wants to give the other women their time with Arie, also, and straight out of the playbook of "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished," Arie seems NOT excited to hear that. I hate to say that The Bachelor is just like dating in real life (because it certainly isn't) BUT, this show always reminds me of a simple fact: if he likes you, he likes you, and you sorta can't screw that up too much. Arie seems like he simply doesn't like Bibiana that much, so her manners and respect for the other women in the house are a con and not a pro, ya know?
Tia and Arie have some good alone time during which Tia says that she felt "weak" and didn't enjoy the challenge. Arie responds, "I'm the man--let me do that." Oh MAAAN. I mean, sure, the entire agenda of the Bachelor franchise is to advance heteronormative relationships but COME ON do you gotta be THAT on the nose!?!?? "Waaah I'm a weak woman and you're a strong man!" Barf.
While this crew hangs out in their privacy pods (err I mean trailers), back at the house a 1:1 date card has arrived and it's for blonde beauty LAUREN S! Lauren seems cute and fun and I'm happy for her! Also I will live to regret saying that in mere MOMENTS!!
But first, we gotta wrap up this group date. Bekah telsl Arie that her longest relationship was 2.5-3 years and she ALMOST reveals that they broke up the first week of college, but pulls back, so as to seem like she's not twenty frigging two. They talk about how breakups can be valuable, how they make you hit the gym then you fall in love (on exactly the schedule you want that to happen, right?) then everything melts away.
The crew re-convenes and Arie gives the rose to Bekah which is annoying, but makes Krystal upset, so it's nice to watch.
The next day is the 1:1 daytime date for Arie and Lauren S. and WOWIE WOWIE WOWIE this reminded me of dates I used to have when I was, oohhhh, maybe 19 and I'd go out to dinner in the North End (Boston) with an older guy and be SO KEYED UP because not only am I on a date (which is v. exciting, especially if you grew up thinking you were v. ugly and that no guy would ever want to be seen with you in public) but ALSO you're drinking wine like a real adult and you're using a fake ID!!
Lauren looks gorgeous--maroon short dress, hair curled perfectly, although her shoes were an abomination and you could tell that the camera person hated them also, as they were rarely in the shot. They board a private jet to Napa Valley and roam around a winery, drink, and talk. They discuss what it must be like to run a winery (HUH? You two hardly know each other--why not talk about your family, your jobs, your taste in books and film rather than stupid hypotheticals?) and Arie makes a few jokes about being an old man which Lauren seems too polite to razz him on. It was hard to watch because she was being VERY polite and curious and he was being sorta lightly sarcastic, it seemed. Just me?
That night they "talk" (well, Lauren talks) over more wine and Arie ACTUALLY EATS the dinner that the producers set out which NEVER HAPPENS but he couldn't get a word in edgewise, so may as well tuck into this meatloaf or whatever it was. Lauren seems VERY NERVOUS and probably VERY DRUNK and she yammers on about her San Francisco breakup, the fact that "there's power in problems" (save me the self-help talk, plz), and how blessed she is to have a great family.
Finally, Arie takes the rose off the little tray and you can tell that Lauren feels like she's about to be given a report card and she knows she got an F or at least a D. He says that he has enjoyed getting to know her and learning about her family (was that an insult wrapped in a fake compliment?) but, he says, "I just don't see it for us" then he escorts her to a waiting car. DeBussy's classic "Clair De Lune" (one of my favorite songs of all time) is played live by a string quartet as Arie roams around alone, rose in hand (HILARZ) and the ladies back at the house process the news that Lauren S. is gone. Caroline, Tia, and Becca are heartsick and even though they are all brunettes, I feel like I would be part of that crew if I were in the house. Krystal takes Lauren's departure as an opportunity to give the remaining ladies a speech about how everyone needs to put themselves out there and nobody wants to hear from her.
Next day is a GROUP DATE and it is DOG DAY AFTERNOON! (JK it's not actually "Dog Day Afternoon" because that's a film from 1975 about a bank robber who wanted to pay for his boyfriend's sex change operation and I am not kidding!)
This group date isn't about bank robberies but it IS a day of circus-style dog training for Arie, Chelsea (she has a child so every moment of her life is more important and meaningful than anyone else's), Annaliese (who has phobias GALORE), Becca, Caroline, Ashley, and others!
The gang learns some tricks with dogs then suit up for a dog show at The Grove in Los Angeles! Comedy God Fred Willard is doing color commentary along with Chris Harrison and Willard's role in BEST IN SHOW is serving him well! He makes some jokes about doggystyle sex and we're rocking and rolling!
Annaliese secures her spot as this season's "Poor Thing" when she is given the role of POOPER SCOOPER in this challenge.
I must address a phenomenon that I have noticed in all reality TV shows--that of the "Contestant Who Can't Catch a Break." She is the participant in the group who is singled our by producers to get THE WORST of everything.
In America's Next Top Model, she's the one who arrives with a head of gorgeous hair and is IMMEDIATELY given a buzz cut (to make her more "edgy") and she spends the season not only enduring the challenges and humiliations and stresses, but also mourning her lost hair, new look, sense that she isn't herself. Remember Brit (aka Brittany) on cycle 8 of ANTM? She arrived with GREAT hair but producers needed to have someone SPIRAL out of control, so Brit was given a red weave that was itchy and disgusting.
And same with The Bachelor. There is always one girl who just takes it on the chin--time and time again. In every challenge, she is given the nightmare costume or the most embarrassing position. In Juan Pablo's season it was Kelly, a girl who seems COOL AS SHIT and who is now happily married (she's super tight with Andi Dorfman, so I see her on Andi's Instagram a fair amount bc I'm am addicted to all things Bachelor). Here is Kelly during that fateful season:
I mean, she looks like an ALIEN with that giant, white mark on her face. Kelly was fun and enthusiastic and she paid dearly for it--always getting the embarrassing costume or assignment.
This is a long way of saying, Annaliese should be HAPPY that she was sent home this week because the producers had decided that she would be their whipping boy. She was a joke to them. So at least now she is home, safe, and far away from bumper cars and dogs, I hope.
Oh yeah spoiler alert, Annaliese bounces outta Bachelor land.
Oh, sweet, sweet reader. I have been trying to write this recap all damn week and have been so busy. So I'm sorry that I'm going to commence phoning it in HARD right now, but I cam. Let's do the quickest summary of the rest of the episode that we can!!
-Afterparty is in a fancy bank turned into a cocktail lounge.
-Chelsea says that she wants to discover herself through someone else (ummm isn't the phrase--that you often her from handsome military men who you date for a few months--just me?--supposed to be, lose yourself in service of others? I digress) and reminds Arie that she has kids. WE GET IT.
-Becca's in a cool, fuscia dress and she and Arie def. have chemistry.
-Caroline asks him what types of relationships he had before this--great Q! Also great way to guarantee on-camera time b/c the show is, after all, mostly about HIM.
-Annaliese is awkward as HELL!! Oh wooow it was like watching me trying to flirt with Wayland dudes circa 1996!! Yikes!
-Chelsea gets the date rose. Blech.
ROSE CEREMONY/COCKTAIL PARTY!
-Bibiana has a lovely bed set out in the driveway (don't judge) for star gazing with Arie. She has a telescope set up--everything.
-What a setup!! Arie "stumbles upon" that lovely setup (while Bibiana is NOT with him and NOT nearby) and canoodles with Lauren B. on that couch. OUCH! Bibiana WALKS UP and Arie says to her, "can we have 5 more minutes?" HOLY SHIT!! This is SOOO BRUTAL! Bibiana deserves better!! Arie then smooches Bekah (Baby Rizzo) on that bed, also! Bibiana, RUN FOR YOUR LIFE! This dude has awful taste in women and you are being disrespected by him AND the producers. Booooo.
-Annaliese continues her Awkward Nightmare tour, pulling him away and then sort of asking him to kiss her, which he OPTS OUT OF!! TALK ABOUT A HEISMAN TO THE FACE!! OUCH!! Finally she gets it and essentially, tells him she is leaving. Goodnight, sweet princess.
-Jenny (or is it Jenna? Look, I am a blonde but I can't tell these blondes apart!) straddles him and they kiss HARD.
-Hipster Kendall Twee Nightmare kisses him, too. Goddamn everyone gets a kiss except for Annaliese because if you ASK for it, you will not receive it. Those are the rules of life TRULY.
-Bekah is a know-it-all and informs Arie that he dates mothers only because he wants to rescue women and that he responds to unavailable women because they don't NEED him and Arie acts like she is dropping profound points, but this shit is pretty standard. Dudes want what they can't have--ummmm yeah. Bekah isn't friggin' Henry David Thoreau or some shit. This stuff is pretty damn standard and straight out of The Rules or Why Men Marry Bitches (which I am currently reading and I am NOT kidding). Easy, Arie.
-Roses are handed out but I can't be bothered to talk about all those dresses.
-Bibiana is sent home. Oh, sweet, sweet Bibiana. You deserved better than this.
-So this episode we lost Annaliese and Bibiana--not super surprising.
-Next week, hot tubs and make-outs in Lake Tahoe!!