Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Bachelor Chris Recap: Finale & After The Final Rose

The twitterverse was buzzing during The Bachelor on Monday night (and I hate myself for writing that sentence) and the verdict was this: That finale was SNOOZEFEST 2K15.  Chris Harrison promised us a surprise and most viewers found the episode pretty predictable, but I contend that something surprising DID happen.

In The Bachelor and The Bachelorette when the protagonist is down to the final two, the options are almost always:
  • The potential mate who is a "safe bet"--someone nurturing, thoughtful, playful, and a strong long-term option for marriage. This person is good looking (I mean, this is TV, after all), but not quite as good looking as...
  • The potential mate who is a "wild card"--there's chemistry there that can't be explained. This person might be a bit unpredictable, very sexy, not exactly Mr./Ms. Congentiality within the house. This person is better looking than the Bachelor or Bachelorette every time. 
Usually, given these two options, the Bachelor or Bachelorette picks the sexy wild card.  We've seen it with 
  • Andi picking Armpit Tats Josh over playful nerd Nick 
  • Bachelor Bob picking knockout Estella over sweetheart Kelly Jo 
  • Pilot Jake picking most hated Vienna over simpleton Tenley 
  • Ben Flajnik picking legendary mean girl Courtney ("winning") over wholesome, family gal (who loved tan lipstick) Lindzi
  • Jillian selecting the pompous Ed Swiderski (who friggin' walked out on her during the season only to return and have the upper hand) over "aww shucks" hottie Kiptyn 
  • Ali Fedotowsky choosing bad boy (who Bachelor Nation KNEW was our of her league) Roberto over the other jag
A few wise Bachelors and Bachelorettes select the more steady option, but it's the exception and not the rule.  (And yeah, can I get a Master's Degree in this stuff because I know I could handle the course work?)

But wait, what happened in the 3 hour extravaganza last night, Selena? Becca and Whitney met Chris's large family during a frigid day in Iowa--not what we normally see when everybody goes to paradise and sweats through "meet the parents."  

Whitney gets first crack at the family and she knocks it out of the park with her manners, sense of appreciation, and sweet candor.  I feel bad that I used to be so anti-Whitney because she is truly a dream daughter-in-law and you can tell that Chris's parents think so.  She drops a few more "we made  a baby" jokes (UNCLE! Please make it stop!) but wins over America's heart with her tear jerker toast about how much she loves Chris.  

After she leaves, Chris's sisters rave about Whitney and inquire about what Becca has to offer.  Chris can't quite articulate what he likes about Becca, saying, "she has qualities that are different... and pretty cool." Umm... ya mean the "quality" that she's a virgin? The men folk gather in the garage to drink beers and talk about chicks  Brother-in-law Jason calls it like it is, saying that Whitney is "all in" and the reason that Chris inexplicably holds a candle for Becca is solely because she's hard to get.  Jason, can you please be my therapist and tell me why the rest of the world's deal-breakers are my aphrodisiacs?

The next day the Soules family is a bit suspicious of Becca, but she manages to charm them with jokes and funny stories of her "journey" with Chris.  That good first impression wears off when she sits down for a talk with Chris's three sisters, though.  Becca spews out a whole lot of conditional phrases about "if I fall in love with Chris" and "if Chris is the one for me" and what MIGHT happen IF that or that plays out.  The sisters are not pleased and say that "we've seen a California girl not come to Iowa before."  (Truth be told, the girl they are talking about--Ombre DA Andi--is really an Atlanta girl who didn't want to move to Iowa and chose a smug former baseball player who can't let go of his pro sports glory days, but potato potato.)  Chris's wonderful mother convinces Becca that she IS in love with Chris and the things that she's feeling ARE love, but Becca's a bit too immature to process all of it. Again, Jason says what Bachelor Nation is thinking: the family can weigh in all they want, but this isn't a math problem to be solved analytically--this is about love and chemistry.  Seriously Jason, can we have a beer sometime?  I'll bring a bulleted list of topics and you just call 'em like you see 'em, OK?  Chris's wonderful father weighs in, saying that Whitney is "the sure thing" (ouch--nobody wants to be called a sure thing, am I right?) and he thinks that Chris will take the risky path.

Becca and Chris have a final date (that feels more like a booty call minus the booty) during which they address some tough questions that they probably should have talked about long ago: why do you think you aren't in love with me yet? What issues are holding you back? They get some concrete answers but Becca continues insisting that there are "supposed to be" steps of some sort and she doesn't know what she's doing.  I think she has watched too many Rom Coms (and Cinderella a few too many times) because I have a lot of dating experience and I'm not quite sure what she's talking about.  Steps?  Every relationship is unique.  Some happen quickly (like my parents' 2 months of dating and then engagement and enduring marriage) and others unfold slowly or in unexpected ways with people who you didn't think you'd end up with.  There aren't official steps, really.  Chris leaves Becca's room and says that it's a "weird situation" and gives us some tears.  Bachelor Nation is fueled by tears!  FEED THIS BEAST!

Feed me your tears, Prince Farming!!!! 

Whitney and Chris have a final date and it's more of a date-date than Becca got, which might tip the hand somewhat.  They hop in a tractor and do some harvesting then cruise in his lifted Chevy truck (NIIIIIICE) to his bachelor pad where they have drinks by the fire.  After daytime drinks it's time for evening drinks at Whitney's hotel where she very wisely tells Chris that no matter what happens, she has put everything on the table and she's at peace but also scared.

The next day is the big day and Chris picks out a ring for his chosen one.  The ladies get done up and don their elegant winter dresses (a tough look to pull off).  Finally it's go time and Chris is in his family barn (overloaded with chandeliers) waiting for the gals to arrive.  We get a glimpse of each one in her limo: Whitney in a black dress with a fun neckline and an updo; Becca with her hair down and a red gown made of crushed velvet.  Everybody knows that limo #1 is the person who is getting sent home and whose high heel do we see emerging from that first car: Becca's.

She walks up the stairs of the barn to a landing that strangely resembles a church because of all the stained glass, then she and Chris talk through the most amicable break-up in Bachelor history.  There's whispering, they can both see their breath, and "you're going to make someone very happy one day" is repeated ad nauseam.  He bids her adieu and during her drive away, Becca sheds no tears and says that "it doesn't feel good at all"and I can't decide if this girl is simply too young to understand what is going on or just completely unemotional.  Both?  Either way, she should probably gain a little experience (go on some dates, give an HJ) before she ever goes on a TV show whose solitary purpose is "to find a soulmate."

Up next is Whitney and HOLY COW she is going to be happy.  Once they are in position (and Whitney is done flapping like a fish on a dock), she launches in on a sweet speech about how much she loves him.  Chris follows with a monologue about the time they crashed a stranger's wedding (I had forgotten about that--SO BAD!) and then says that she's perfect for him.  They are a fantastic match in how earnest and sorta corny they are and I'm excited for them.  Chris gets down on one knee, opens up the ring box (MONEY SHOT) and her response to the question is "Absolutely."  After that they kiss and sit in the window of the barn looking out on their now shared kingdom (err--farm).

So yeah, not a drama-filled final episode at all.  And Chris wisely picked the reasonable, adult, would-probably-work-in-real-life option of Whitney (not the wild card passion pick).  Nicely done, Chris!  THAT is a surprising turn of events to me!

In the "After the Final Rose" portion (hour 3) Becca came back (in a fantastic pink dress) to continue on her tour of Zero Emotions and Naivete.  She says that she "loves easily" yet has never been in love (huh?) and continues to claim that she is  unsure if she was in love with Chris because she has nothing to compare it to, but girl, you never do.  Sure, the truncated timeline of The Bachelor is unique, but falling for someone doesn't have a roadmap. I know that I sound like I've been drinking the Bachelor Kool Aid, but I just can't get my mind around what Becca expects.  There's a first time for everything and sometimes even if you've never experienced that thing, you know it's the thing.  I remember when I was 18 and on a date with a lovely alum from my college and during every moment with him I felt like my soul was singing and I never stopped to be like, "Wait... is this it?" I just knew it was a great feeling!

Whitney and Chris come out and Whitney makes some charmingly self-effacing jokes, Chris says that he likes Whitney because she reminds him of her sisters (huh?), and Whitney says that Britt's beautiful.  Then Jimmy Kimmel comes out with a cow named Juan Pablo.  And just when you think that things can't get weirder, Chris Harrison flirts with Ashley "Crazy Train" S. and finally the next Bachelorettes are revealed to be Kaitlyn AND Britt.  Yes, two of them.  The Bachelor has always felt like a show about polygamy, but this time it's for real.

It has been wonderful to spend this season with you, dear readers.  I'll be back next season to see who can better rock a fuscia lip--Canadian Kaitlyn or Poor Man's Ariana Grande Britt.  In the meantime, I'll be posting here on occasion, performing standup and storytelling all over, and you can already read my book or listen to me reciting my own book anytime you like! xoxo


  1. Thanks for the recaps, S! As usual it's so much fun to watch the Bach with you. Kaitlyn and Britt together is gonna be a train wreck (please let them choose Kaitlyn and get on with it) but good fodder for analysis I'm sure...!

  2. Thanks so much for reading, Patricia! Yeah, the 2 Bachelorettes setup is odd, but I've heard that the guys will all arrive then vote for who they want and one of the ladies will be sent home THEN? Seems like a lot of trouble to just have Britt or Kaitlyn pack her bags. I hope Kaitlyn is the Bachelorette they go with! :)