Why do they spend the first five minutes showing us pointless shit like Emily’s mom bringing her breakfast in bed and previewing what we’re going to see in the episode? Can’t we just get straight to Chris Harrison’s 40 seconds of screen time?
When Chris leaves the date card, he utters the words, “Only 16 left.” Yes, three episodes in and the show is practically over.
First Date — Chris
The date card reads, “Love is a steady climb.”
In case you haven’t figured out the complex riddle from the date card, Emily and Chris will have to scale the building atop which they will be having dinner. About halfway up the wall, lightning flashes in the distance. Thanks to the previews, we know nobody dies so there’s no real tension here. They make it to the roof without incident. Emily declares Chris a “manly man.” You know, because she’s thirteen.
At dinner she says, “If I saw you across the bar, I would not talk to you. I would be too intimidated.” Every time they are together she talks about how hot he is. You know, because she’s thirteen. When Chris reveals he’s 25 she voices her concern about his youth. SHE’S 26! (I mean, thirteen.) See, I told you she’s fucking ageist. Just not in the way I originally thought.
Fortunately for Chris she’s blinded by hot. He gets the rose despite being a year younger than her yet twice as mature.
Suddenly there’s a country music concert in the street for just the two of them. I didn’t catch the name of the band but the lyrics include “…makes a man say, mmm hmmm.” Therefore, I’m sure he’s super popular. Chris asks her for kiss at the end of the song and she plays coy, “Why don’t you try and see what happens?” No surprise that she kisses him back. Seriously, she’s thirteen.
Group Date — Charlie, Alejandro, Stevie, Ryan, Alessandro, Sean, John, Michael, Doug, Jef, Tony, Travis
The date card reads, “Let’s play.”
The guys meet Emily in the park, she tosses them a football and takes off. Great date so far. She meets her girlfriends in the park and informs them they will be interviewing the guys. She takes her sweet time. Eventually she brings the guys to meet her friends and spring the surprise. The guys are predictably freaked out.
Most of the questions focus around how comfortable the guys are becoming a father. Of course, they are all extremely comfortable becoming a dad. The girls give Travis a hard time about the ostrich egg he’s toting around. Stevie, the party emcee, wastes no time getting up and dancing for the girls. He doesn’t seem to notice that it’s awkward for everyone but him. They make a few of the guys do pushups.
Wendy, Emily’s most camera friendly friend, is smitten with Sean. She makes him take off his shirt and do push-ups. It’s pretty creepy.
After the interviews, Emily brings in a ton of kids for the guys to play with. The guys do just fine with the kids. Ryan decides to go over and chat with Emily and her girlfriends. When the girls ask him if he would still love Emily if she got fat, he says no. He realizes he lives in America, right? Everyone gets fat.
In the evening, they head out for cocktails. Sean takes an opportunity to compliment her friends and play up his parents’ relationship. She eats it up. He’s definitely getting the rose.
Doug says that her girlfriends remind him of his buddy’s wives. He reveals his dad passed away from Epilepsy and his mother left because she couldn’t handle it. He and his sister spent their childhood in foster homes. That’s earned him at least two more episodes.
Tony misses his son. Emily tries to convince him that it’s harder on him than it is on his kid. The chat doesn’t seem to help. Doug tries to talk him down. If Tony is trying to earn the reassurance rose, he may be overplaying it a bit. Also, he’s pathetic. Just leave, already. Eventually, Emily returns to tell him to go home to his kid.
The rose goes to Sean. I told you it would.
Final Date — Arie
The date card reads, “Love is a wild ride.”
Emily flies Arie to Dollywood. It’s a Dolly Parton themed amusement park in Tennessee. There aren’t as many boob-shaped structures as you might imagine. Why Dollywood? Emily is a huge Dolly Parton fan. Shocker! It turns out, she’s never ridden a roller coaster before. Then she rides one. Boring. They go into a theater and find two microphones and a paper that reads, “Write a love song.” Before they finish, Dolly Parton appears and Emily freaks out. Dolly plays them a song. Emily keeps saying, “I could die, I could die. This is the best moment of my life.” Dolly tells them she wrote a song just for this occasion. It sounds like she wrote it on the walk from the dressing room to the stage. Though, don’t all country songs sound that way?
One of the reasons Emily admires Dolly is because she “wears costumes every day.”
Emily and Dolly have some time alone for “girl talk.” Arie should be thanking Dolly for that. No way was he going to get any of Emily’s attention so long as Dolly is in the room. Dolly gives her the same advice any human being would give her. Also, Dolly’s face is scary.
In the evening they have dinner in some kind of barn/stage. He tells her about his relationship with a woman with two kids. They broke up because he was ready to have a kid and the girl wasn’t. He asks about how his schedule will be for her. She says she welcomes it. He’s hitting all the right notes here. It’s like someone scripted this or something.
She tries to fake him out by starting a I’m-not-giving-you-a-rose speech. It falls flat. Someone has to believe you are capable of humor before you can pull off a joke like that, Emily. She bailed on the joke after she saw the look on his face. She could see that he was upset. All I could see was that he was drunk.
The Cocktail Party
She announces to the guys that she’s developing some crushes. She grabs Kalon right away. He says, “I really took it personally when I didn’t get a date card. Sharing you with these guys is devastating.” She asks him how he feels about her being a mom. He says he always imagined that his first kid would be his own. He starts to explain and Emily jumps in. He tells her, “I like when you talk but I wish you would let me finish.” Where’s Kanye when you need him?
On the advice of Emily’s friends, Travis asks Emily to chuck the egg onto the driveway. She does. When the show pushes something so hard in previews that seems totally out of character for the Bachelorette, you know it’s going to end up be something stupid and innocuous. I called this at the beginning of the show. Seriously, ask Dee.
She asks Alessandro, “How do you think you would be as a dad?” He says that being a father is “a compromise.” She doesn’t like it. She tries to give him an out by asking if there is a language barrier issue, but he digs in and insists that it’s a compromise. She walks him out. He seems strangely shocked. He’s real dumb.
Arie seizes this opportunity to make out with her. I’m sure there’s some sort of perfect auto racing metaphor I could use here if I paid even the slightest bit of attention to racing. Something like, “He really lubed her carburetor, amiright?”
Sean says he misses her after being away for 48 hours. He tells her that he’s ready to be a father and that Ricki would be his daughter. She could call him whatever she wants, but he would consider her his daughter. Perfect timing. There’s a very good chance that she’ll give him a second rose tonight.
The Rose Ceremony
The final two are Stevie and Nate. Yes, Alejandro got a rose even though he’s yet to utter a single word this entire season.
Stevie goes home. Why? Because he’s not on the Jersey Shore.