Last night, America endured 3 hours of UNPRECEDENTED Bachelorette madness and the finale included everything we love: long, tear-stained walks through the jungle, belly tops, and KISSING!
The episode started off with Chris Harrison in a studio filled with shrieking Bach fans (what he would call residents of "Bachelor Nation") and our fearless host set the scene: the last time we saw Des, she was wearing a belly top and weeping on the end of a pier in Antigua. Then it cut back to Desiree in paradise talking about the Brooks break-up. Desiree rocks a peach dress with turquoise necklace and stares off at either the Caribbean Sea or the Atlantic Ocean, depending on which direction she was facing (though I'd be surprised if Des could see ANYTHING from beneath her fake eyelashes). She's still upset and says that it broke her heart that Brooks doesn't love her. In walks my new favorite therapist, Chris Harrison, and they sit down for a chat. Des holds it together until Chris asks her how she's doing, when she starts crying HARD. Ever the gentleman, Chris stays quiet and lets her cry it out (much like my favorite interventionist from A&E's "Intervention," Jeff VanVonderen. Rest in Peace, Intervention! There's a whole lot of people who love you like crazy, to quote JVV). Chris wisely points out that Des is upset about rejection from by the ONLY guy who held back from her (seriously, Chris Harrison: if you're reading this, you must pursue a life of doling out gentle tough love to women who like a-holes. I'll be your first client!). Des continues with the histrionics, saying that she wants to go home, but within a few minutes she has composed herself and she's ready to move forward. PHEW! Man oh man, that 30 seconds of super weepy Des footage was used EVERYWHERE in ads for this season! And it was over in a moment!
Since Bach is all about formal ceremonies, there WILL be a rose ceremony that day, with 2 roses to hand out and 2 guys showing up. I'm no mathematician, but I think that those are some good odds! There must be something in the water in Antigua, because when Drew and Chris arrive to the rose ceremony they are both looking HOT (maybe it's the suit-no-tie casual look at they both rocked?). The boys line up and Des explains to them that Brooks left of his own volition, then she starts crying. She pulls an Ashley and says that she'll be handing out these two roses, but that if the guys don't want to be there "let me know!" (Why is it that in EVERY Bachelorette season, there's a sense of "thank you for being here--do you really like me?" when in Bachelor seasons, the feeling is always "you're lucky to be here--I'm the decider" ya know? We'll need to go back to Women's Studies 101 to tackle that issue, I know.) So they have the most awkward, overly formal 3 person rose ceremony of all time and--shocker--Drew & Chris both get roses.
Then we are subjected to so much in-studio time wasting. I don't give a rat's ass what these random seat fillers think of all this! What is this, an episode of Donahue!? Get me back to paradise and let the tears FLOW!
Soon we're back in Antigua and Des is getting dressed in a bikini top, then belly top. You know what goes great with a belly top? UNRELENTING TEARS. Put that one in your back pocket, pussycats. Des mounts a horse and meets up with Drew (who is wearing regrettable purple shorts) so that they can ride horses down to the beach and look like the cover of a harlequin romance novel. They get to the beach, sit down for drinks, and in a move that seemed SUPER forced (maybe because he could sense Des pulling away), Drew overdoes it with a toast, saying, "to being madly in love and wanting to be nowhere else." Des then drops the words that NO ONE EVER wants to hear, "I need to talk to you..." and then gurl gets a little harsh, adding, "especially after that." OUCH! Poor man's Katie Holmes is about to drop Drew like the real Katie Holmes dropped T. Cruise! (Only with fewer lawyers and no high heel wearing children involved.) I can speak for Bachelor Nation when I say that we were all BLINDSIDED by this development (and that we should probably secure our borders, recruit an army, develop a national currency--things that any nation must do). Des starts crying again, saying that she'd be so lucky to have Drew in her life and she feels like something is missing with him. Drew stoically takes it all in (like a true 1950s leading man) and responds with such grace and humility, saying that Desiree doesn't have to apologize for not being in love with him. Aww Drew! You are GOOD at getting dumped and I'm sorry for that, sweetheart! Ever the strong man, Drew hugs her goodbye then walks away. He says that he's crushed, confused and now he'll have to start over. Goodbye, sweet pussycat.
The next day, Des and Chris have a date, but Chris Harrison wants us to think that Des might dump him, too, because this shiz is unprecedented and ALL BETS ARE OFF! Desiree rocks a bikini top and flowing skirt (good look) and meets Chris for a day of kissing and canoodling on a catamaran (I hate myself for writing that, but it just flowed out of me). Des says that her feelings were "clouded" because of Brooks, but I think what she means to say is that her first pick isn't there anymore, so congrats Chris--you're getting pulled up from the JV squad and getting put in the game as a starter! Hope you don't mind wearing the old guy's mouthguard & uniform and accepting the nickname "Sloppy Seconds" (too harsh?). I'll admit that Chris and Desiree are goofy and light, whereas Drew and Des were a bit more serious and earnest. That night they make a bunch of candle lit toasts (the jist of which are: Chris thinks he's still in a contest against another guy; Desiree trusts that everything happens for a reason and she got the Heisman from Brooks so that she could notice the guy right under her nose (whose father picks his nose--aww snap we're in some patented Selena double parens! I feel so safe here in this double-walled cocoon!)). Chris says that he wants to meet Desiree's family and I can only guess that he's ignorant of Desiree's loose cannon, mildly special brother who has hand tats. Wait 'till ya meet the family--you might change your mind about all this love stuff, buddy!
Back in the studio (snooze), former Bachelor rejects (oh I mean ALUMS), Jackie, Lesley, and Lindsey from last season are there to speak as Desiree's "friends" and, in a SUPER awkward setup, across the aisle from them sit Sean (their shared ex-BF) & Catherine (his chosen one)! This is more awkward than attending the wedding of a guy you made out with in college (haven't we ALL been there at least once or thrice?). They weigh in on what's happening (who cares) and the only important stuff is this: Lesley is an AWESOME gal, but she is wearing a horrible white, underwire top thing that looks like doooog shiiiiit on her (that one's for you, Katie Compa) and since Lindsay got dumped HARD by Sean (she was in the friggin' top TWO!), she has dyed her hair dark brown and gotten really into eyebrow pencil. We all heal in different ways.
Back in Antigua, Chris meets Desiree's sweet parents and psychopath brother. As soon as he sits down, Nate (crazy bro) starts grilling Chris, asking why Des should choose him, what his first impression of Desiree was, if he felt insecure about the other guys, etc. Chris and Desiree's dad have some 1:1 time, during which Chris asks for permission to propose to Desiree and they shake and hug on it. The next day, Chris sits down with Neil Lane to select the most romantic of depreciating assets: A diamond engagement ring (this phenomenon that is uniquely American and started only in the late 1930s. Read more here and here if you like.) Chris shows that he's feeling anxious and LOVES hyperbole by saying that he's in "uncharted waters and the water is cold." Also, are there sharks? Because it's SHARK WEEK, MOTHER F-ER!!!!
Finally, Desiree is putting on a gorgeous peach dress (mermaid style with sheer overlay pulled over one shoulder--perfection) and she's ready for SOMETHING. ABC keeps teasing us with clips of her saying "I don't know what I'm going to do" but GIVE ME A BREAK, Bach. As if she's going to walk away from all this and create an OKCupid account. She's getting engaged come hell, high water, or crazy brother. Desiree takes her mark on a cliffside structure and Chris arrives with ring in box in hand. They come together and Chris starts talking first, which seemed like an immediate mistake, but whatevs. He talks through all of their happy memories and travels and drops the worst romantic cliche in the world, "you make me want to be a better person." (Seriously, where did that one come from? It's SO overused and if its origin is from "Jerry McGuire" I might lose my mind because I hate T. Cruise--can you tell?) He goes to get down on one knee, but Desiree stops him! Aww snap kid, you think you're getting NEGGED! Hold back the tears!
She explains the curve ball, saying how upset she was when Brooks left, that she already sent Drew home, and that Chris was the only guy who met her family. She says that she was so blindsided by Brooks that she couldn't see how great Chris is (which is nice, I guess... but also feels a lil like a speech for a 2nd banana). Des finally says "I love you," they kiss, and then he gets down on his knee and proposes to her. We get a SWEEPING crane shot (and as I told my Twitter peeps, EVERY engagement looks beautiful when shown by sweeping crane shot, am I right? Follow me at @SelenaCoppock. I'm more shameless than that song by Garth Brooks!) then Des doe a final rose ceremony, plus we watch a montage of their dates.
BUT WAIT THERE'S MORE!! I know, I know--I was like, "UNCLE! I give up! You guys are in love! I can't handle it anymore!" but Chris Harrison wouldn't relent. ABC sent us straight into the After the Final Rose episode even though we were overstuffed already.
Des comes out in a sparkly, white dress and chats with Chris Harrison about her journey. Chris asks her how she got through the heartbreak and my roommate and I screamed, "she was going to marry SOMEBODY!" Truth. Des admits that she liked the chase of Brooks (spoken like a 10th grade girl) and he comes out in a plaid suit with shorter hair, a short beard, and a tie pin. (Honestly, we saw MAD TIE PINS this season! Those things are making a comeback and mama likes it!) Brooks continues to be boring and unemotional and congratulates Desiree on her engagement news.
Next, Drew comes out in a blue, 3 piece suit and he asks if he could have done anything differently. He's as sweet and pragmatic as always, saying that love has to be mutual and that he fell in love with Des, it changed his life, and he has no hard feelings. Such a class act.
Last but not least, Chris comes out (in a suit and TIE PIN) and we watch Des and Chris watch their own proposal (holy self indulgence, Batman!). Then Chris gives Desiree a poem titled "My Girl" that is framed by dried rose petals (from their ceremonies) and is terrible.
But Chris Harrison knows what Bachelor Nation wants (a democratically elected president?): TO KNOW WHO THE NEXT BACHELOR WILL BE! Yes, the televised romance train must keep on moving and consume my life for another 3 months. Who will be making potential mates cry next season? JUAN PABLO! I gotta admit I love this pick--he's humble, from Venezuela (so he's hot, obvs), easygoing, and a single father to a delightful daughter. The fact that Bach producers picked Juan Pablo as their next Bachelor (and not smarmy, ambitious wanna-be Bachelors like Ben or James) shows that picking the Bach is just like sorority rush: if you want it too badly and push too hard, you won't get it.
What did you guys think of last night's finale, dear readers? Share in the comments!