I’ll be honest, this episode was a bit underwhelming, although it was a good set up for the weeks to come. The women are starting to divide into factions and there is some ill will brewing that can only be contained for so long. This week we have two one-on-one dates and a group date. Let’s break it down:
Leah Lauren B.
The first one-on-one date card reads “The sky’s the limit” and goes to Lauren B. Ben picks her up in a classic Mustang and drives to an airport, where a yellow biplane awaits to whisk them away on their date.
When Lauren B. sees the plane, she hesitates, saying, “There’s only one propeller! If it stops working, what are we going to do?” You’re the fucking flight attendant, you tell me. Isn’t it your job to know how to handle these situations? Although her emergency instructions may have been lacking, I’m sure she more than made up for it by providing Ben with some complimentary in-flight services, if you know what I’m saying.
During the flight, they talk about how cute the other is and how they feel like little kids when they’re together, all while awkwardly kissing. Nothing says romance like a helmet and headphone/microphone combo. The real MVP of this date is the pilot, who has to awkwardly sit three feet behind them and endure their baby talk. His paycheck must have been stellar – it would take more than a couple of Benjamins to keep me from crashing that plane and putting a fiery end to the misery of third wheeling this thing.
The pilot radios down to Chris Harrison for permission to buzz the tower at the Bachelor Mansion and it’s granted. The girls at the mansion immediately realize what’s happening and are devastated they’re drinking free liquor at the pool instead of hurtling through the air in a flying yellow death trap along with Ben. Perspective, ladies.
The plane lands in some abandoned field where a few Bachelor interns have set up a hot tub. Like a true gentleman, Ben makes Lauren B. change into her swimsuit behind a tree. These women have put a lot on the line by coming on this show, so it’s nice he’s still looking out for their dignity. They spend most of their time in the hot tub alternating between making out and pressing their foreheads together. I yawn and refill my wine.
During the dinner portion of the date, their conversation gets more serious. Ben reveals that his father has some heart problems and underwent triple bypass surgery shortly before he started filming The Bachelor. Lauren B. talks about her family as well. Her and her father are both passionate about the simple things in life. One of his hobbies is keeping their yard neatly trimmed – between that and her being a flight attendant, there has to be a joke about a landing strip in there somewhere. She gets a rose and their date ends with more awkward face rubbing in front of a country band.
Soccer Group Date
Amanda, Haley, Jennifer, Shushanna, Leah, Amber, Lauren H., Olivia, Jami, Rachel, Lace, and Emily get a date card that reads, “Love is the goal.” We really need to start culling the herd here – keeping track of all these girls is getting tedious. The squad rolls up to the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in two limos, where Ben greets them on the soccer field. He informs the ladies that they will be competing against each other in a 6 vs. 6 soccer game. The winning team will be rewarded with a cocktail party, while the losing team will be sent
home back to the mansion. To help sharpen their skills, ABC enlisted the help of USWNT members Alex Morgan and Kelley O’Hara to coach the two teams. If I were Ben, I’d save roses for the two of them.
Alex and Kelley are shocked at how terrible the women are – apparently they’ve never seen an athletic group date on The Bachelor before. Spoiler alert: they are always this bad. Once the game starts, it becomes clear that the fate of each team rests in the hands of their goalie. Lace is the goalie for the Stripes team – secretly I wish they’d put Olivia in goal so we could watch her play chubby bunny as the girls punt ball after ball into her massive pie hole. Lace lets the first few kicks sail past her while she sits on the ground picking flowers. Later she confesses she didn’t know she was allowed to use her hands. Has Lace been living under a rock or is she a real life version of a Mole Woman from Kimmy Schmidt? Are there any other basic concepts of which she is blissfully unaware? Twin Emily played goalie for the Stars and was a brick wall – it appears she’s no stranger to balls flying at her face. Even that wasn’t enough to prevent the Stars from losing and heading back to the mansion in defeat.
As a reward for their Stripes victory, Lace, Olivia, Amber, Leah, Haley, and Jami get to have a cocktail party at some hotel with Ben. Before he even finishes congratulating them on their victory, Big O pulls him away. She tells the camera “I don’t want to just sit on a couch and sip my water.” Why the hell are you drinking water when there’s an open bar, Olivia? People like you are the reason I have trust issues. She takes him to one of the rooms upstairs and taunts the other girls from the balcony. They respond by talking shit about her weird toes, cankles, and bad breath. It’s totally a high school move to criticize her like this, but then again most of the girls haven’t been out of high school for very long. Jami feels guilty and tattles on the other girls, telling Olivia everything that had been said. Snitches get stitches, Jami.
Amber tells Ben that since she’s been on The Bachelor before, and she knows what she wants this time around. She says she’s hopeful for their connection before she attacks his face with her mouth. He apparently doesn’t hate it and gives her the group date rose. O Face closes her mouth in disappointment and tells the camera that she’s sad she didn’t get the rose, but she knows Ben feels the same way as she does. He told her this nonverbally – when he was standing to leave the date, he pushed off of her thigh, and he doesn’t do that with the other women. Maybe she’s not special; maybe she just has sturdy thighs.
One-on-One with Jubilee
Jubilee’s date card reads “Love is in the air,” and when it is delivered, she absolutely loses her shit. The morning of their date, Jubilee remarks that Ben is twenty minutes late and when a helicopter arrives, she admits her fear of heights and jokingly asks if any of the other women want to go on the date for her. I’ve never seen a human spontaneously combust, but I’d wager there were more than a couple of women who were prepared to burst into flames out of sheer rage.
The helicopter touches down at Cal-a-Vie Health Spa, which Jubilee continually refers to as a “miniature castle.” Girl, it’s a big house. Slow your roll. As they walk in, there are plates of hors d’oeuvres waiting for them. Ben convinces Jubilee to try caviar for the first time; she takes a bite and in less than a second relocates the caviar from her mouth to her napkin. It makes me wonder what else she spits out. She tells Ben “I’m adventurous, just not with food.” Is she talking about anal? He asks what her favorite food is and she tells him she’s obsessed with hot dogs. I respect that Jubilee knows what she likes and isn’t afraid to admit it. Plus hot dogs are awesome.
Since things evidently got a little too adventurous in the food department, they decide to play it safe with a few rounds of shuffleboard, making this officially the whitest date of all time. What’s next, a rousing round of croquet while they sip Arnold Palmers? Jubilee tells Ben that she was shocked he would actually pick her for a one-on-one date, and he seems genuinely sad she’d feel that way. He reassures her, saying “I’m very intrigued by you; I really want to get to know you better.” He probably just wants to know what that chest-tatt is all about.
Things got heavy during dinner. Ben asked Jubilee to open up about her past and growing up in a Haitian orphanage. To me, this does not seem like a great conversation starter if you’re trying to get laid, but maybe Ben likes a challenge. Jubilee tells him that she has a love/hate relationship with her past and deals with a lot of guilt – when she was younger her entire family died, leaving her as the only survivor. Jesus Christ. If I’d wanted to feel this emotional I’d watch a Sarah McLachlan ASPCA commercial on repeat and drink alone.
As Jubilee cries, Ben calmly strokes her talons and tells her “You are a strong woman. There is a lot of depth to you. I want to get to know those layers.” During this conversation, I can’t help but hear the voice of Mike Myers as Shrek, saying “Onions have layers. Ogres have layers.” Maybe not your best comparison, Ben. Regardless, he gives Jubilee a rose and tells the camera he can see himself falling in love with her.
After Jubilee’s date, I was ready for some shallow and vapid conversations at this cocktail party; however, Ben kicked everyone in the feels again when he started the evening by telling the women he learned two close family friends had passed away in a plane crash the previous evening. I contemplate switching from wine to whiskey at this point because I did not sign up for the emotional roller coaster we’re on tonight. He tells them “I hate to start the evening like this, but I’m kind of sad. Also, I’m really not in the mood to deal with your shit, so put on some big girl panties and deal with it.” I may be paraphrasing.
Big O grabs him first, per usual. Instead of asking him how he’s feeling or giving any signal that she gives a flying fuck about him as a person, she immediately launches into a diatribe about how she hates her body from the waist down and how people have written blogs about her cankles. Hate to break it to you O Face, but your cankles aren’t the only body part that someone has blogged about now.
The other girls take a much more sensitive approach. Amanda offers her condolences to Ben like a normal human, and even though she has a rose, Jubilee decides she wants to do something to make Ben feel better and gives him a massage. When the other women see this happening, they all lose their goddamn minds. It’s understandable – all they see is someone who is safe rubbing up on Ben and taking time away from the women without roses. The editing wizards may have given Jubilee a generous cut, but it looked to me like she was truly concerned about Ben, whereas at this point in the cocktail party everyone else is so focused on themselves and getting a rose they can’t even fathom that Ben may have feelings that extend past the next rose ceremony.
Amber and a few of the other women try to confront Jubilee but she makes it clear she wants nothing to do with what they’re trying to start and retreats to a bathroom. In the midst of Ben comforting her, Amber marches upstairs to tell her off in front of Ben. Ben cuts Amber off mid-rant and basically tells her to step off and mind her own business; he tells her the actions and personality traits she is criticizing are actually what he likes best about Jubilee. I’m not sure what Amber & friends were trying to accomplish – if it was look like petty bitches, they did a great job. If it was to win Ben over, it was a swing and a miss.
Once that fiasco was over, Ben had yet another bucket of crazy waiting for him. Lace pulls him outside, saying she’s mad at herself for her behavior thus far and that she needs to love herself before she can love anyone else. Come on Lace, stop playing Bieber’s new album on repeat and realize your antics are why we watch this show in the first place. She tells Ben that she’s going to go home and work on herself. Whatever. See you on Paradise.
Lauren B., Amber and Jubilee have roses. The remaining 11 go to:
1. Lauren H – Thanks for the love on Twitter. You may have gotten the first rose tonight, but I’m still your #1 fan.
2. Amanda – Her Botox is looking extra fresh.
3. Becca – Still perfect.
4. Haley – Hotter twin.
5. Emily – Goalie twin.
Side note: My ultimate fantasy is for the twins to get this season’s two-on-one date so Ben will be forced to choose between them. It would be savage. Don’t let me down, ABC.
6. Rachel – Good news: She got a lot more screen time this week. Bad news: All of it was her lying on the ground writhing in pain.
7. Caila – Lots of tears when Ben was going on dates with the other women this week. You do realize you’re on The Bachelor, right?
8. Jojo – No-no date for Jojo this week.
9. Jennifer – I’ve got nothing. I still think she may be a high-end prostitute.
10. Leah – Not Lauren B.
11. Olivia – She’s so narcissistic and delusional she thinks Ben giving her the last rose is his way of telling her she’s his favorite. I’m pretty sure he’s still pissed about being forced to discuss her cankles. She also thinks they have a secret language and in the previews for the next episode refers to Ben as her husband. Lace was just the red herring, Big O is actually the craziest of the crazies this season.
In addition to Lace, we have to say goodbye to Jami and Shushanna. In her exit interview, Shushanna speaks perfect English – maybe she’s been hitting that vodka she brought from Russia off camera. I know my Spanish is always better after I’ve had five or six margaritas. Next week it looks like the women head to Vegas, so I’m sure everyone will be responsible and nobody will make horrible life choices. Just kidding, it’s going to be a disaster. See you then. .
Image via Shutterstock