On Sunday night while most of America watched the 40th anniversary of Saturday Night Live, Bachelor Nation witnessed tears from the unlikeliest of places (former Bachelorette Andi and shower hater Britt), a Friday Night Lights-themed date, and Carly serving as the spiritual guide to Chris Soules.
The first hour of Sunday night's show was a "Chris Tells All" special, which we have never seen this early in the season. Chris weighed in on some of the zanier characters (legit crazy Ashley S., blonde booze hounds Tara and Jordan, Jillian and her bizarre hypotheticals about homeless humps) but he wasn't the only one who got time on camera. Kelsey came back, smug as ever, and further rambled about her eloquence then proceeded to use the word "ameliorate" wrong. The Bach editors did the Lord's work when they cut up shots of smug Kelsey claiming to take the high road and saying that she really respects Ashley I. and thinks she's an amazing person interspersed with her taking cheap shots at the "Kardashian" who she insinuates is dumb and low class. Andi Dofman always returned to talk about her break-up from Josh (Armpit Tats who used to be a pro baseball player and refuses to stop talking about it), which she says they had been struggling with for a while (because you picked a TOTAL JERK, girl!). Andi's emotional and says the breakup was mutual and caused by their shared inability to support each other (ouch) and Chris Harrison gives her some kind words. Enough of this talking head therapy stuff--we want action! Drama! Tears in different settings!
Back in the game, Kelsey and Ashley I. have just been dumped in the Badlands and the remaining ladies and Chris are at the cocktail party. Chris pulls aside Megan (who is single-handedly keeping the notion of dumb blondes alive) and she says quite candidly that she thinks they aren't moving forward and other girls are. Chris agrees and they part ways gracefully which STUNS the remaining 6 women. Britt has her arms around someone (as always) and it finally hits me that she's one of those girls who is just much too touchy-feely with her friends. Do you know the type I mean? I get it, you're FRIENDS! Chris Harrison tells the ladies that there WILL still be a rose ceremony but then Chris Soules says that there will NOT be a rose ceremony and everybody's going to Iowa!
They land in Des Moines and the 6 remaining ladies walk around downtown while Britt rocks a look that's best described as "L.A. Trash" (paper bagged sweatpants, really?) before Jade gets the first 1:1 date of the episode.
Jade is driven to Arlington (population: 400) where she sees Chris' house (holy bland bedroom sets, Batman!), cruises with him on his motorcycle, and attends a local high school football game with him. Varsity Blues has got nothing on that date (though a whipped cream bikini would have really spiced things up). Chris and Jade walk around his former high school where Jade tells him that she had a rebellious streak in her younger years (oh just you wait, Prince Farming) and they make out by the lockers.
Back at the hotel, the ladies are gathered around and it looks like a lipstick commercial thanks to Britt (bold red), Kaitlyn (fierce fuscia), and Becca (nude lip--a girl after my own heart!). The next 1:1 goes to Whitney (voice like nails on a chalk board) and Britt is finally getting a sense of what life is like for all the other girls. It's tough, huh, Red Lips?
For their 1:1, Whitney dresses up like she's about to attend a Pearl Jam concert circa 1994 and they pose for kissing photos all over Des Moines. Whitney is perfectly nice but she's just a bit over enthusiastic and annoying for my taste, but she definitely grew on me during their date. They go out for drinks that evening (and walk by a crowd of excited Des Moinans--is that what you call them?) and meet up with 3 of Chris' buddies at the bar. Chris' pals lob some tough questions at Whitney and she handles them with aplomb, then tells Chris that she has no parents (was raised by a single mom who died unexpectedly about 10 years ago) and suddenly I find Whitney's bubbly nature much more charming and compelling than I did just a moment before. They exit the restaurant to find a poorly-drawn version of their outdoor photo as a mural against the restaurant's wall. Whitney is so excited by it that she straddles Chris (there was a whole lotta straddling going on in that episode).
While Whitney and Chris were canoodling all over Des Moines, Carly, Britt, Kaitlyn, and Becca (remember her? Silent virgin this episode) take a road trip to Arlington to "see the sights" and learn just how small it is.
Later, Jade confides in Carly that she posed for Playboy a few years ago and that her father learned about it via a co-worker. Yikes! She wants to tell Chris about it before he finds out on his own and Carly wonders if this will be a deal-breaker for Prince Farming, saying, "hey mom, don't google my wife." Oh Carly, you are the greatest.
It's time for a group date of Chris, Britt, Kaitlyn, and Carly. Britt continues to boggle my mind with her hipster/juvenile/90s grunge/LA trash fashion choices and Kaitlyn grows on me, which I never would have seen coming a few weeks ago. The foursome skates around an ice rink, has some 1:1 conversation time, then has drinks in an antiques store. Carly shoots straight with Chris, saying that Britt pronounced that she could NEVER live in Arlington after this road trip. That is not the line that Britt has been selling Chris and Bachelor Nation holds its collective breath that Chris will see Britt for what she really is--a Hollywood-based "waitress" (actress) who is on the show in hopes of scoring her own lipstick line (and/or D list fame). Kaitlyn and Chris have an honest talk about how she started out strong but has felt insecure the past few weeks and Chris gives her a rose, meaning she'll definitely be taking Chris up to Canada to mer the parents.
For the first time this season, Britt is NOT showered with attention via Chris and she's ANGRY. That's what everyone else has been feeling all season, girl. Welcome to the normal club. Chris and Kaitlyn return and Britt shakes her head at Chris, gives him a death stare, and then insinuates that she wouldn't want to introduce him to her parents. Carly looks off but probably smiles as Britt reveals her true colors (it aint all bold lipstick--if Britt aint happy, aint nobody happy) and Chris seems shocked to see this side of her. Carly has been doing important work and I applaud her for it! Britt tries to justify her tantrum, saying "I only have one family" as though that's not the normal state of affairs for MOST people.
That night all of the gals except Britt have a chat about how much she did herself in with her tantrum. I think she did and I can't wait to see tonight's episode!