The episode opens with Becca cruising around Venice, CA on a bike and talking about "riding the wave," and "just going with it," like a lazy self-help guru.
Meanwhile, the boys are in STD Shack shrieking off the balcony (standard move) until Chris Harrison gathers them and encourages them to make the most of their limited time with Becca (WOW dude--that's really sage, unique advice). The first date card gets dropped and the participants will be: Clay (handsome biracial former NFL player), Nick (blonde white dude who isn't very hot and I know there's more to life than being hot, but there isn't much more to life when you're on The Bachelorette), Chris R. (guide FL dude who is now the ONLY guido FL dude with bad facial hair since Chase left), Jean Blanc (handsome black guy who is all about cologne and I aint mad at it), David (bird), Jordan (Wilhelmena Model's best/worst PR rep), Connor (holy STRONG JAW, Batman), and Lincoln (black guy with British accent, lil overenthusiastic).
They head to Saddlerock Ranch, Malibu where Becca is waiting for them in white. They all head into the ranch and the guys are given gorgeous tuxedos to change into. Like Donald Trump at Miss Teen USA, Becca stays in the fitting room as the guys strip down, then she gets some modeling tips from Jordan ("before you put on socks, shoes, tights, put your confidence on" AND HE WAS BEING COMPLETELY EARNEST). Becca and her harmen of hotties look NICE as they walk down the ranch's driveway and head to their activity.
Waiting for the posse are lovebirds RACHEL and BRYAN!! OMG Rachel is SO damn funny and likeable. When she screamed at the guys, "WHAT THAT MOUTH DO?" I gave her an applause break in my living room. The activity for this group date is an obstacle course of wedding-related challenges, one of which looks JUST like the amazing Japanese game show Slippery Stairs. Have you ever seen THIS?
Isn't that the funniest thing you have ever seen? God I love it. The other challenges involve running, sitting in cold water, getting a taste of what it was like to fight in the Vietnam War, and ending up beneath an archway where Becca is waiting! The guys hustle HARD on the assorted challenges and Lincoln seems to perhaps cheat a bit with the hourglass timer, but he wins and the judges go with it. A photographer appears out of thin air and snaps Becca and Lincoln's "wedding photos."
That night at the afterparty, Becca is rocking a SUPER low cut, lacey top romper that is super flattering, plus a bold lip which is very unwise because these dudes are Kissing Bandits even more than Pasty Snooze Arie was! After a quick toast, Lincoln immediately grabs Becca and leads her away for 1:1 time, which pisses off the entire group, but no one moreso than Floridan Zoolander Jordan. He utters a refrain for the ages, "IT'S A GROUP DATE, BRO!" and continues his reign as this season's best source of sound bites.
|"IT'S A GROUP DATE, BRO!"|
Lincoln and Rachel kiss (an experience that's akin to "fling to the moon on the wings of a Pegasus while dancing with a unicorn on a pot of gold," according to Lincoln and WOW that guy mixes metaphors and loves prepositions) and her bold lip is GONE for the rest of the night. While Becca has solid conversations with cheesy guido Chris R, David, and Clay, Lincoln and Connor get INTO IT over a framed photo of Becca and Lincoln that she gifted him. Both guys are being brats, but Connor takes it too far by throwing the picture frame off the patio and into the pool. Props to Lincoln for responding that he refuses to get up and fight Connor because his mother taught him better than that--I liked that move.
Despite his strong jawline and cute face, Connor has really screwed himself with that move, as Becca finds it unnecessarily aggressive and says that she wants a man who can stay respectful and handle himself, then says that she doesn't want to get to know him any better tonight. Ouch, bro. Jean Blanc makes some headway, complimenting Becca on her smile and her lips, which promots her to say "come here" and they smooch hard.
The group date rose goes to Jean Blanc (much to Lincoln's seeming surprise) and Connor leaves there feeling dejected. Deal with it, dude.
The next day is this season's first 1:1 and the first 1:1 is a powerful move that can portend good things for that contestant. Blake (horse guy, sorta goofy, lil bit "aww shucks") is the lucky recipient of that date card and he and Becca hop a limo head into a "bad area of LA" (OMG an industrial area!? Some barbed wire!? WHERE ARE WE?). While they are driving, Lincoln is LEGIT CRYING to the other guys over his lost picture frame. Colton (aka Husky Ryan Phillipe) is NOT feeling super sympathetic, but keeps his trap shut like a smart cookie. Jordan is trying to say either ingenuity OR a word that means a person who is not genuine (I really couldn't parse the meaning of his comment on this one), and ends up saying "ingenuinity" I think? Wow. What the heck kinda schools did this kid ever attend? I mean, besides runway modeling school.
The 1:1 date is a surprise date orchestrated by Therapist/Exploiter Chris Harrison and it's all about Becca and her +1 having a chance to smash the symbols of her past! Oh man I remember when they did this on some D list rehab show with John Gosselin--no joke. Blake and Becca suit up in Timberlands, oversized bodysuits like mechanics wear (Becca brings her own belt), and welders helmets (sexy date looks, you two!) and get ready to do some damage.
Who's there to provide the soundtrack for this destruction? LIL JOHN! Hoo boy--either it has gotten cool to appear on The Bachelorette or Lil John is a Lil Desperate!! Either way, it's fun to watch Becca and Blake smash a race car with Arie's name as the license plate, shred the grey couch upon which they were sitting when chickenshit Arie danced around asking her for a breakup, and, finally, in a move that felt a lil harsh, smash some TVs upon which Arie's proposal to Becca is showing! OUCH!!
That evening, Blake (in a tan button-down which I don't love) and Becca (in a navy cocktail dress, leather jacket, dangly earrings and lots or bracelets) sit down to discuss this process, exes, and getting through heartbreak. Blake shares a story of how the woman he thought he was going to marry dumped him harshly (and her friends were like, "did you drop him yet?" OUCH!) but the timetable on that story was very unclear. I had no idea how long he was with that girl, so had a hard time locking in. Becca talks about how the Arie breakup made her stronger and offers Blake the rose, to which he responds, "yes, everytime, yes," which I assume ABC will start printing on T-shirts and coffee mugs if Blake wins this thing. They make out on the street (Becca totally initiated the 'ole against-the-wall make out but Blake got into it).
Meanwhile, back at the house an assortment of strangers are becoming besties and learning if they will be permitted to leave their fancy jail. The group date crew is Garrett (whose catchphrase seems to be "FIRED UP" and that's also MY catchphrase), Ricky (hasn't made a huge impression), John (seems a lil nerdy), Ryan (banjo boy), Alex (bland), Christon (sexy Mahershala Ali), Leo (curly mane man), Wills (cute), and the guy who she is deliberately keeping at arm's length because she's really interested in him--I can tell--Colton (Husky Ryan Phillippe).
The Bachelorette must have had some cuts in the Limo budget because the guys board a school bus and head to a gymnasium where Becca is waiting for them, along with 3 abusive kiddos who KILLED ME. They were SO MEAN to these guys and I loved every moment. The 3 kids denied the men water breaks, called them "TRASH," and whip dodgeballs at them at top speeds. It was a glorious group date.
The dodgeball group date ends with a championship match--the boys are split into two florescent colored teams and Becca looks super cute in a cropped top and silver shorts (metallics are the greatest neutrals). A huge crowd cheers on the match-up, holding signs that say "ARIE SUCKS" and I gotta say, the constant anti-Arie sentiment of this season is giving me LIIIIIIFE! Chris Harrison and comedy genius Fred Willard are doing color commentary as Leo single-handedly saves his team time and time again. One team wins, but who really cares? It's time for drinks!
That evening, Becca rocks a sparkly, gunmetal dress (and you KNOW I Love my gunmetal color), a few necklaces, dark jacket, smoky eye--great look overall. She wears a LOT of jewelry and I can dig it. I don't think I wear enough jewelry and Becca is teaching me a lot about layering delicate necklaces.
Garrett (who "liked" some pretty offensive Instagram posts before he got on this show and has since apologized for that, but I dunno--he still sorta rubs me the wrong way) and Becca chat by a dark pool and Garrett says that she is the girl version of him (barf). Bland Alex admits that he doesn't normally go after girls who have their shit together (hahhaahh yikes), and Becca repeats the phrase "I'm not gonna lie" ad nauseam. Wills gets teary-eyed talking about his parents 50 year marriage and lets Becca try on his satin jacket (pretty sure I saw that jacket on the Nasty Gal website) and Husky Ryan Phillipe Colton drops the BOMB that he has a "relationship" for a weekend (OH you mean a HOOKUP but you don't want to embarrass your family on national TV so you're calling it a "relationship") with Becca's close pal Tia (Aransas girl hell YEAH!). Becca is stunned and handles it carefully (no doubt being aware that Tia herself will be able to watch Becca's response to this news once the show airs), saying that this is "tricky" and she needs some time to process all of that. So this means that Colton had "relationships" with both Olympic gymnast Aly Reisman and former Bachelor contestant Tia and NEVER got laid (he's a virgin). Now that's a unique guy.
The group date rose goes to fashionable Wills.
Finally, it's time for a cocktail party and rose ceremony and WOWIE ZOWIE this recap is getting long, so let's hit the high points. Jordan said the phrase "tick tock, let's make it rock" and wore a blanket most of the night. Clay had some cute football-tossing time with Becca and that is NOT a euphemism for anything, surprisingly enough, and got kissed. John read Becca a poem. Connor took a framed photo of himself and threw it in the pool to show Becca that he's NOT a psychopath with a bad temper. David stewed in anger and mocked Jordan to his face (delicious). Jordan repeatedly said the word "ingenuininity" or something like that, which I thought was him saying a word to mean "not genuine" but in fact, was him trying to say ingenuity. There was a brief moment when I *did* identify with our House Idiot, Jordan: when he legit CHUGGED his white wine.
Going into the rose ceremony, Jean Blanc, Blake, and Wills had roses. Becca handed out more roses to:
-Chris R. (too cheesy for my taste--I'm growing up!)
-Jason (didn't have a date this week but you can't screw up too much if you don't say much)
-John (lil nerdy--he'll last another week or 2 tops)
-Clay (hey there! I'm all right with a slow buuuuuurn)
-Mike (2nd best man bun in the house which is a sad title to hold when there are only 2 man buns)
-Connor (MUCH TOO CASUAL, DUDE--patterned shirt and no jacket!? STEP IT UP!)
-Leo (the TOP KNOT(CH) MAN BUN and YES that pun was intended!)
-David (lil nerdy, but his debates with Jordan are juicy)
-Garrett (dark suit, light shirt, fine)
-Nick (super cheesy chain necklace gets caught on camera and I am NOT loving it)
-Brian (dark hair--that's all I have in my notes)
-Christon (YES! Former Harlem Globetrotter is making moves)
-Jordan (rocking a pink blanket and looking like an idiot)
-Lincoln (seems relieved. Just slow it down and stop pushing so hard, dude)
-Colton (I'm glad Becca let him sweat a lil bit)
So who is heading off into the Los Angeles sunset?
-Alex (who got a pretty BRUTAL edit with his crying at the end)
-Rickey (who? Yeah that's the problem)
-Trent (who I could have sworn was Alex, but apparently not!)
Next week we delve into AWKWARD territory, as Becca recruits her gal pals to come meet the guys. And OF COURSE one of them is Tia!! Hahhahah tough luck, Husky Ryan Phillippe!