Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Bachelorette Week 9: The Syphilis Suites

This week's title courtesy of Stephen Walter aka @stephen_walter aka my husband.

For The Most Important Week Yet, Andi and co. travel to the Dominican Republic. But before getting down to business, Andi takes a quick minute to journal her thoughts on the three men still standing.

Dear Diary,
This is Josh:

"Josh has a personality I think every girl is attracted to." Wrong. So wrong.

This is Chris:

She describes Chris as though he were a were a puppy "He is sweet, he's smart, he's light hearted and funny. Chris is so cute and charming"

Finally, this is Nick:

She talks in length about their mental connection and his passion, then ultimately declares, "When he kisses, he kisses." Who's she going to choose? The adorable puppy or the passionate kisser? Only the next two hours will tell....

First up for The Most Important Date Yet: Nick.

The two take a helicopter to a private island,

and promptly disrobe.

Then they spend, I dunno, ten minutes of camera time trying to devour each others' faces.

"It's like that adult romance with Nick," Andi says, and I wonder if she knows what we're all assuming she means by "adult romance."

But wait, they need to stop making out for a quick minute to have a serious talk. They talk about past relationships, then Nick tries to tell Andi that he loves her, stammers for quite a while, fails to spit it out, shrugs and goes snorkeling again. 

Good thing he'll get another chance during the date's evening portion. As Nick and Andi approach their dinner waiting for them, Nick says, "This actually looks really good," implying this is the first edible meal of the past 9 weeks, which could explain all the uneaten food. 

Look, I don't want to be gross, but I think it's important to keep in mind that the dates this week have the potential to end in a fantasy suite where Andi and her men can experience more...."adult romance." If there's ever a time for these guys to pull out all the stops, it's now. Which is precisely why Nick chooses this moment to reveal a little project he's been working on. 

Nick both wrote and illustrated a fairy tale for/about Andi, and it's as face-meltingly embarrassing as you'd expect.

I wonder how long it took to complete those colored pencil masterpieces, burn the edges just so, then past them in the book without making the pages all wavy and weird. My guess is: way too long. 

If Andi is mortified by a grown man's third grade project, she doesn't show it. In fact she rewards his efforts with a key to the fantasy suite. 

When Andi asks Nick his thoughts on this super individualized note from Chris Harrison that has been sent to three couples every season for the last fifty years or whatever, Nick says, "I think the thing I was most excited or most anxious for was....talking your ear off for an entire night." Right. Talking. 

But before spending lots of hours alone together, there's something Nick really needs to tell Andi...on camera. 

Nick walks Andi to a tree and delivers the speech he's definitely practiced. 

"I love what I know about you. I love that you're a serious girl who doesn't take herself so seriously. I love that you know what you want but you can go with the flow...I love that you're very confident and strong but vulnerable, and I love you, Andi. Like, I really love you."

And it is at this point in the program that I receive the following text from my dad:

Luckily, there are no microphones in the Fantasy Suite. 

And it's lights out.

Promptly after her night of, um...talking with Nick, Andi meets Josh for their Most Important Date Yet. Seems like that would be an awkward morning between Nick and Andi.
"Hey sweetie, sorry I've got to leave so early. I just have an overnight date with another man today. Mind if I borrow your toothbrush?"

Andi and Josh explore town, and Josh obnoxiously insists on speaking spanish the entire time. 

Then they invade a little league game.

I think Andi has some ulterior motives for taking Josh to a children's baseball game. As far as I can tell, Josh does not have a job. His title reads, "Former Pro Baseball Player," and not once has he mentioned how he currently makes a living. Andi isn't about to commit herself to a man without a job, and has decided to talk him into coaching. Or maybe I'm more concerned about his unemployment than Andi is and am reading too much into this.  

The couple sits on a bench for a private talk in a public area.

Josh says, "I love you. I've never said that to anyone before and really meant it." Yeah, so why start now?

Andi buys it though. 

That evening they sit down for dinner and talk about absolutely nothing significant,

which I guess puts them in a kissy mood.

Andi presents the key to the Fantasy Suite, and Josh nearly sprints to the room.

But not without pausing to admire the fireworks that just so happen to be shooting off at the exact moment the couple walk to their candlelit bedroom. Foreshadowing, guys.

There's a shot of them kissing in the hot tub that lingers way too long....then fade to blur, and yadda yadda yadda. I assume. 

So. Nick got a day on a secluded beach. Josh got a charming walk around the city. Chris? Chris gets livestock.

Andi is clearly trying to sabotage any connection she may feel to this man. She even admits to not liking horses. And look, I get it. Three is too many men to try and juggle. But if you're going to purposely ruin your chances with anyone, make it the unemployed, loud guy with weird brother attachment issues. Not the gentlemanly farmer with a successful business and wonderful family.

Because Chris is a total champ, he puts up with what is clearly a less than ideal date, whisks Andi off her feet, 

and does his best to bring romance to a field of cows.

Chris goes into the evening looking forward to the Fantasy Suite, because if he's going to spend the rest of his life with someone, he had better spend at least a few hours alone with her off camera first.

But it's not long into their conversation that Andi starts pulling faces like this:

And this. 

And soon Chris realizes this night is not going the way he had hoped it would. 

In a last-ditch effort, Chris declares his love for Andi. She responds with this:

Then tears.

And she confesses that she's just not feeling it. 

"Every part of me feels like I'm an idiot," she says. Little does she know that everyone in America feels like she's an idiot too.

Then, because Chirs is Chris, he say "I want your feelings to be for me, but if they're not, then I want to go home. It isn't meant to be. I'm lucky that you care for me enough to tell me." WHAT?! Who is dumped that graciously? And who kisses the hand of the dumper? Chris. Chris does.

As Chris makes his sad ride to the airport, he says"I want to find a partner in life. A best friend. Someone who is excited to be around me every day and share a life that's awesome. That's all I want."

If this man is not the next Bachelor, Chris Harrison is a greater fool than I ever believed possible.

Speaking of, look at Mr. H's tan!

Tell the truth, Chrissy, are you wearing bronzer?

Andi tells Chris about the trials of her week, talks about how hard it was to send Chris home, and then totally forgets about it and gushes over Nick and Josh. 

Even though there are two roses and two men, they still do a rose ceremony because this show is stupid. 

Both men accept their floral gift, and toast to meeting Andi's family. 

Wouldn't it be great if the final episode were a duel between these two? Maybe on horses with those long sticks like in medieval times? Or I dunno, I'd be cool with just a wrestling match or something. Things would be different if I were in charge.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The Bachelorette Week 8: Front row seat, no distractions

Ah, the hometowns. 3 men show Andi their cities. 1 man shows Andi his body.

The visits start in Milwaukee where Andi meets up with Nick. They make out in between bites of cheese curds.

Then they visit the local brewery for some light drinking and heavy polka.


They're both terrible.

Nick has ten siblings, and all but one meet at the family home to scare the crap out of Nick's new lady. 

The oldest sister asks the hard questions, like, you know you're on a tv show, right?

She says, "You're obviously in an inflated situation," which means, "this is never going to work."

The youngest sister asks some adorable questions like, "Ugly guy with good personality or hott guy with bad personality?"

She's super earnest and it's super adorable. 

Mom cries.

Nick cries.

"I think I'm her favorite," he says. But then chickens out on telling Andi he loves her. Because 1. He's scared, or 2. He doesn't feel comfortable lying on national television.

It's a rather uneventful (read: snooze-inducing) hometown and I'm sorry you had to suffer through those words and pictures. We're getting to the good stuff. I promise. 

Speaking of good stuff, let's talk about Chris. Chris owns a farm.

Chris looks good in plaid. 

Chris has a huge, paid-for house.

And, as Andi puts it, "He's the hottest farmer ever." HOW IS THIS MAN NOT ALREADY MARRIED? And, WHAT IS ANDI WAITING FOR? LOCK IT DOWN NOW BEFORE SOMEONE ELSE DOES, you fool.

There's a brief conversation about work possibilities for Andi, but then they both say, duh, it's the internet age in a global community and also Iowa needs lawyers.

Because writing anonymous love letters wasn't enough, Chris makes yet another romantic gesture with a fly-by sign.  SERIOUSLY IS HE A MURDERER OR SOMETHING? I DON'T UNDERSTAND HOW THIS PRINCE IS NOT TAKEN.

Andi meets the fam.

The sisters share embarrassing stories about Chris. He used to only wear underwear on weekdays. Sounds reasonable enough to me. 

Mom and Chris have a heart to heart. He says that Andi living in Iowa is their biggest hurdle right now. I wish this were the truth. Unfortunately I think their biggest hurdle is three other man because ANDI IS BLIND TO THIS MAGNIFICENT BEAST STANDING RIGHT IN FRONT OF HER.

Things get a little weird when Mom corners Andi and said "You'll have beautiful babies. I'll babysit for you."

But Andi meets the crazy with crazy and says, "I can't wait to have babies."

Then the whole clan plays ghost in the graveyard. Two of them kiss which I feel like is against the rules.

Okay. Josh's turn. Look. I gotta be up front with you. I cannot stand Josh. He talks like every jerk I knew in high school and he never stops touching Andi. Give the woman room to breathe, amirite?

Andi doesn't seem to mind though.

Josh takes Andi to a baseball park and makes her spit sunflower seeds on camera. 

Then they meet Josh's family, and more importantly, his dog. 

At dinner, Andi gets really confused and bothered when no one is talking to or about her, but instead talking to younger brother Aaron who is preparing for the NFL draft. Like that's a big deal or something. 

Dad sits down with Andi and sort of says, "Look. If you marry my son, you're signing on to be a life-long Aaron cheerleader. Cool? Cool."

Mom sits down with Josh and asks, "Do you like this lingerie I'm pretending is a dress?"

Fine. Not really.

I guess I forgot to take screenshots of the rest of the day, but really it's okay because they just play football and then Andi and Josh say a sad goodbye.

The good news is that they saved the best hometown for last. By best I mean cringiest.

Marcus picks up Andi in a car I honestly don't think is his.

Then, instead of taking her to a charming local restaurant or his favorite bench in the park, Marcus takes Andi to a seedy, dark club, pours her champagne, disappears, then reappears moments later wearing this:

Then takes it off. Slowly. Sensually. Sort of dancing. Dancing poorly. 

It's rough. And only gets rougher when he takes off the pants.

"This is every girl's dream," Andi lies. 

Luckily Marcus has the decency to put clothes back on before taking Andi to meet his mother and siblings. 

Marcus finally, after all these years, thanks his brother for being a father figure. He's like, oh wait? Is there a camera here? Catching me being so sweet and sincere on television? You guys go that footage, right?

Andi sits down with Mom. Mom is surprised that Marcus has been open and honest, because usually he's not or something. 

"I love you. I truly do," Marcus tells Andi. 

Then Marcus tells the camera, "Andi is my soulmate."

But then things get sad. Chris Harrison calls everyone to his home, sits them down, and tells them the news of Eric Hill's death. For a minute Andi and the four guys still have their camera faces on, trying to react in a way that will translate well to an audience. Marcus steps outside. Andi follows, it's a little staged, a little attention seeking. But then, the camera turns on the crew, who put down their gear, walk into the room and start hugging everyone. At this point Andi and the men give genuine reactions. They cry and express regrets and hold each other for a long time. I'm a little surprised they showed this but glad they did. I think it's a testament to how well liked Eric was that not only were his co-stars upset by his loss, but those who worked with him behind the scenes were as well. Even I, with my cold, cynical blogger heart, was moved to tears by this scene.  It's a silly show with nearly zero reflection of reality, but Eric was their friend and their loss is very real. 

Understandably, Andi has a difficult time at the rose ceremony a short 24 hours later. 

She excuses herself for a moment,

while Chris Harrison either consoles her or reminds her that she has contractual obligations. 

Eventually she pulls herself together, walks into the other room, and sends Marcus home. Marcus is surprised that his striptease didn't land him a ticket to a fantasy suite. He's the only person surprised by this. 

Andi tries to offer some sort of explanation beyond "You took off your clothes and things got weird."

Marcus bemoans the love lost in the limo, while wondering where things went wrong. Ask anyone in America. They'll tell you you lost your chance when you lost your shirt. 

Next week, Andi and the fellas spend some time alone, which is Bachelorette talk for spread disease. 

See you there.