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Alright folks – we’re halfway through this season, which has somehow been equal parts dumpster fire and snoozefest. Thanks for trudging alongside me so far; since we’re at the point of no return, we have no choice but keep pressing forward. We’ve come too far. This week, the crew migrates to sunny Ft. Lauderdale, because apparently ABC can’t afford to send them to Miami after they broke the bank in Lake Tahoe with all the extravagance at the Hard Rock Casino. This week brings us two one-on-one dates, a group date, and a meltdown from Krystal that shows that deep down she’s actually a fourteen-year-old girl. Lets break it down:
One-on-One Date with Chelsea
This week’s episode begins with a montage of the women doing stupid shit in Ft. Lauderdale, which I will not torture you by rehashing. As they settle in to their hotel suite, Arie pays them a surprise visit and asks Chelsea if she’ll accompany him on this week’s first one-on-one date.
“I know its been five weeks since I gave you the First Impression Rose,” Arie begins, “so I figured it was time for a second impression. Second impressions are important, you know? I know that I want to bang you, now I need to figure out if I want to bang you and also be a stepfather to your child.” Chelsea squeals in excitement as she takes Arie’s hand and leaves the other girls to sulk around the hotel, wondering why they weren’t pretty enough to get a date.
Arie and Chelsea’s first destination is a pier where a yacht waits for them at the end. “That’s our boat for the day!” Arie explains.
“Boat?” Chelsea exclaims, “That’s not a boat! That’s a cruise ship!” I roll my eyes. Excitement is appropriate, but act like you’ve been there Chelsea. Play it cool and don’t remind him that you’re trash. I don’t say that to be elitist – I grew up in rural Indiana and learned how to drive a tractor when I was five, so like, I get where Chelsea is coming from.
Unfortunately, she doesn’t heed my advice; when Arie asks her if she could have any boat she sees, she chooses some ugly deck boat with an outboard motor that happens to be trolling by instead of the beautiful yacht she’s literally standing upon. Nevertheless, she tells the camera, “I can’t believe I’m standing on a dream boat, with a dreamboat.” I gag. I hope that this dreamboat makes like the Titanic, hits an iceberg, and sinks with them on board.
As the date continues, we discover the producers have yet again supplied the rest of the women with binoculars to enable their voyeurism as they spy and Arie and Chelsea. Turns out that they did make like the Titanic, except instead of disappearing into Davey Jones’ locker, Chelsea is at the helm of the boat screaming “I’m flying Jack, I’m flying!” as Arie holds her, confused. “But my name isn’t Jack…” he wonders. He probably didn’t bother to see Titanic because he’s so old he probably remembers reading about it in the newspaper when it actually happened.
Arie and Chelsea also reenact Hitch and make out on some jet skis, much to the dismay of the women who have continued to spy on the date. Baby LoLo 2.0 and Maquel, who has since made her triumphant return following her grandfather’s funeral, perv on the couple hard, but apparently watching them play tonsil hockey was too much and they gave it up. Marikh, unfazed, settles in with some popcorn and a fresh set of batteries to keep watching the Bachelor peep show.
For the evening portion of their date, Arie takes Chelsea down a nondescript alley, where they enter an unmarked door underneath a marquee that says “Car Museum.” There isn’t anything suspicious about this at all, folks. This is totally legit. Once they enter, it seems they are in an actual car museum, not some horror film death trap. As they walk between the cars hand-in-hand, Chelsea stops and looks longingly at the back seat of a Renault Coupe de Ville.
She touches the back window gently, fingers slowly tracing downward. “Put your hands on me, Jack,” she whispers. Confused, Arie cocks his head to the side. “Seriously, who the fuck is Jack?”
As they sit down for dinner, Arie asks Chelsea about her previous relationship. “Well,” she starts. “The most important relationship is my life is my relationship with my beautiful son…”
Arie interrupts her. “Cut the shit,” he says. “What’s the deal with the baby daddy?”
Chelsea takes a deep breath and sighs. “Well to be honest, I hate talking about this stuff. It’s a long story…”
Again, Arie isn’t having it. “My wine is running low, so can be do the TL;DR version?”
“Sure,” Chelsea nods silently. “He was my sugar daddy and he traded me in for a newer model.”
“We’ve all been there,” Arie replies. “Anyway, would you like to continue this vacation where you don’t have to take care of your child and travel on ABC’s dime even though you probably won’t end up with me?
Chelsea snatches the rose from his hands before he even finishes his sentence, cementing her fate as the token single mom who will probably make it to hometowns and then get dumped immediately after Arie meets her spawn. It would be heartbreaking if we haven’t seen this exact situation transpire on two of the last four seasons of this godforsaken show.
Alley Cat Strike Group Date
This segment of the episode opens with a close up shot of Arie holding a bowling ball close to his face. Slowly, we see his tongue exit his mouth and casually lick the surface of the ball before he hurls it down the lane to bowl a perfect strike. As I see him give that filthy ball a tongue bath a wave of nausea hits me along with the realization that despite how horrifyingly disgusting that ball is, it probably isn’t the dirtiest thing Arie has touched or will touch with his tongue during his time on The Bachelor.
We cut back to the womens’ hotel suite, as this week’s second date card arrives and is addressed to Maquel, The Antikryst, Pixie Tits, Becca K, Jenna, Seinne, Kendall, Ashley (who?), Marikh, Jacqueline, and Baby LoLo 2.0 and reads, “There’s not a moment to spare….”
With such an open-ended invitation, the women are naturally disappointed when their limo drops them off at a grungy bowling alley. As the women do their patented Baywatch style jog into the building, they find Arie waiting for them, already wearing a bowling shirt. He pours them some beers and tells them to get excited since they’re going to spend the day bowling. At the edge of the screen, you catch a glimpse of Marikh vomiting onto the ground in sheer horror at the prospect of a full day of bowling.
Arie tells the women to divide into two teams for a competition. “Whoever wins gets to go to a cocktail party!” Arie tells them. “And the losing team has to go back home.” The women split up and start hurling balls down the alley with the hope that a victory today would pay off with Arie’s balls being hurled at their faces in a few weeks.
The important part of this date isn’t actually the date itself. Eventually Krystal’s team wins by a blowout and get some trophies, as well as the assurance of more time with Arie that evening in a smaller group setting. However, Arie decides to change things up and decides to extend that evening’s cocktail party so that all the women can join.
This ignites a primal rage in Krystal. She starts pouting immediately, and apparently while off camera on the van ride back to the hotel launched into a diatribe about how Arie is a liar. As the women depart the van, they are visibly shooketh by what transpired. I’m so intrigued – to be honest I would trade a pinky toe for that footage. I need to know what went down.
As the rest of the women get ready for their cocktail party, Krystal meanders around the suite in a robe. “I’ve decided not to go to the cocktail party,” she informs anyone within earshot. “Arie disrespected me and didn’t value my time, so I’m not going to value his.” Great plan, you twatwaffle.
The other women give a grand total of zero fucks that Krystal won’t be there. When they meet Arie, he asks if everyone is excited for the night, and the ladies immediately correct him. “Everyone isn’t here,” they inform him. With a quick glance, Arie notices Krystal’s absence.
“Where’s Krystal?” he asks. “Did the earth open up and swallow her into the pits of hell again?”
“She threw a tantrum, called you a liar, said your mom looked like real whore, and thinks the decorations at your condo were tacky and she already has new curtains ordered for when she moves in. If you want to send her home, she’s in our suite and we made sure to leave the door open for you,” the women collectively chant at once, praying the blood sacrifice they made to Chris Harrison earlier in the evening would work.
“Well that’s awkward,” Arie replies. “I guess I should go check on her.”
Instead of ignoring Krystal’s behavior, Arie encourages her by seeking her out to see what had crawled up her ass sideways. She tells him that she felt disrespected and he brushed it off, clearly indicating that he felt she was being unreasonable. It’s honestly the first time this season Arie has given any indication that he possesses a backbone, so that was nice. He tells her that he wished she had aired these concerns with him in person, and that he thinks she should stay in her room for the rest of the night and think about what she’d done.
While Arie returns to the rest of the girls, Krystal decides not to stay in her room and think about what she did and gets dolled up and heads to the cocktail party, pretending like nothing had happened.
“Can I sit with you ladies?” she asks.
In union, their groupthink unbroken, the rest of the women shout, “You can’t sit with us!”
Krystal is taken aback. “But it’s Wednesday, and I’m wearing pink!”
The rest of the women don’t budge. Krystal makes excuses for how she acted, trying to blame it on heated emotions. No one is impressed. When she doesn’t get her way, she storms off again. You get one good storm off per season, Krystal, I hope you used it wisely.
As the evening progresses, Arie spends some time talking to Baby LoLo 2.0 and they have the exact same conversation they did last week. “I just feel really connected to you. We’re getting so close,” BL 2.0 tells Arie. He agrees. “Totally babe. Wanna make out some more?” She does. They do.
Pixie Tits gets a conversation as well – I honestly think her and Arie have the most palpable chemistry out of any of the contestants. He’s really into her. She won’t win, but he’ll definitely bang her at some point. He takes the other Becca to his hotel room and they make out as well. I’m starting to sense a real pattern here.
At the end of the cocktail party, Baby LoLo 2.0 gets the group date rose. Sidenote – is anyone else concerned that she’s a robot? Not a normal one, but some sort of animatronic Fembot? She seems like the most boring person in any room she enters. I mean, she’s hot, but I would hope any engineered individual wouldn’t be a total uggo. Time will tell.
Swamp People One-on-One Date with Tia
When brainstorming dates for Ft. Lauderdale, the producers had a conundrum. “Well,” they mused, “We can do ocean and yacht shit like we always do. We could do shopping, but like, that could be pretty expensive, especially with these superficial bitches and we already sprung for those Louboutins. Is there anything in Florida that would cost us next to nothing?”
After a moment, an intern pipes up. “I’ve got an idea!” she stammers nervously, sloshing the Starbucks orders she was tasked to deliver in her nervous shaking hands. “Send them to a swamp!”
“It’s perfect!” the producers exclaim. “Send the girl from Arkansas on it. It’ll feel like she’s back at home.
And that’s exactly what they did. Arie and Tia take an airboat ride, see an alligator, freak out, and then speed away. They’re dropped off at a giant house and Tia pretends to be ecstatic.
“I’ve never seen anything like it! It’s a mansion in the Everglades!” she shouts, jumping up and down to bounce her (likely) fake tits. She’s right about that – I’ve never seen anything like it either, and I don’t mean that in a good way. Size wise, it’s impressive. However, when it comes to quality, it looks like a shittier version of Disney’s Haunted Mansion, except more people have definitely been murdered inside it.
Arie and Tia perch themselves on the rooftop deck and make out for a while. They comment on the beauty of the view, which again is bullshit because they’re literally looking out at a swamp. Is Tia even remotely concerned that this is the perfect spot for her to be murdered and fed to alligators? Just me? Cool.
The date is oddly normal and for the first time I think that Tia may be a real contender. I think she’s prettier than her BFF Raven, plus she has a doctorate level degree in physical therapy. You heard that right – Queen Wiener is actually Dr. Queen Wiener. Everything was cruising along until Dr. Wiener decides to drop a bomb on Arie.
“I think I’m falling in love with you,” Tia tells him. Pump the brakes, Doc Queen Wiener. I know you’ve known this guy for like, five whole weeks, which is probably longer than most of your friends from high school dated their cousins before they tied the knot, but this is not normal first date behavior. Do less, Tia, do less.
Regardless, Arie is into it. Well, he’s at least into the idea of wanting to get into her pants, so he gives her a rose.
Remember how all the girls complained nonstop about Krystal during the group date? This cocktail party was an extension of that. Krystal attempts to take the high road and offers to speak one-on-one with the women to explain herself, which turned into a revolving door of the other contestants saying “I hate you, and this is why” before launching into a list of everything she’s ever done wrong, as if they’re Martin Luther nailing the goddamn 95 Theses on her church door. It’s a giant circle jerk, and I’m over it.
Arie shares my sentiment, and during his time with Krystal, she jokingly says “Aww, babe, we’re having our first fight!” Unflinchingly, Arie replies, “And it could very well be our last.” He tells her that since she’s been to his house and met his family already, their relationship had been further along than his with the other women, but given her inability to process reality like a normal human, he’s taking a step back. “I’m not saying it’s over,” he tells her. “But you’re on thin fucking ice.”
Krystal decides now is the time to throw a Hail Mary. “HiiiiiiiiiiiIIIIIIIIiiiii,” she starts. “Now that I think about it, I think, like, just, like, being in that environment was like, really triggering for me. I, like, basically grew up in a bowling alley…”
Of course Krystal grew up in a bowling alley. Of course she did.
She continues. “I just remember a lot of the guys my mom dated made promises that they didn’t keep.”
Everything is starting to make sense. All of a sudden, I get a flashback to early-90s Krystal growing up in Montana. I see her sitting near the Pac-Man console, off to the side of the bowling alley where her mom works. Her hair in a pink Scrunchie and she’s wearing a new pair of overalls. There’s a birthday party that she wasn’t invited to taking place a few yards away in a small alcove, and Krystal’s attention bounces between watching that and watching her mom hand out shoes to customers while her latest fling leans casually on the glass display case near the cash register. As he lights up yet another cigarette, the conversation between him and Krystal’s mom grows heated. Young Krystal sees the disappointment in her mother’s eyes as she fights back tears as yet another man’s words turn out to be hollow. He flicks his cigarette butt into a half-empty glass of beer as he picks up his bowling ball bag and beelines for the door, leaving Krystal’s mother standing there in dismay. As tears begin to stream down her mother’s face, Krystal swears to herself that when she grows up, she will never let a man wrong her in a bowling alley for as long as she lives.
Meanwhile, at home on her couch, Annaliese whispers, “It’s okay, Krystal! I have bowling trauma too.” No one hears her, because she’s alone. She’ll always be alone.
Krystal’s story would be touching if it were true, but this seems like a totally bullshit way to blame some Stage 5 clinger behavior on something from your childhood. Arie seems to let it slide this time, but I bet one more stunt like that and Krystal will be on the first flight back to teach her Orange Theory classes back in
a whale’s vagina San Diego.
Chelsea, Baby LoLo 2.0, and Dr. Queen Wiener already have roses. The remaining seven go to:
1. Pixie Tits
2. Seinne – Still too good for this show
3. Kendall – I respect her ability to toe the hot/crazy line like no one’s business
4. Becca K – She’s in it to win it
5. Jacqueline – The only thing I learned about Jacqueline this week is that she is an aggressive open mouth kisser
6. Jenna – Methinks this is the last Rose Ceremony she survives
7. Krystal – Just like Icarus, she’s about to having a fucking meltdown
That means that joining the legion of the rejected are Maquel, who is pissed she left her grandpa’s funeral just to get the boot over Krystal, Marikh, whose fire flame emoji looks will be sorely missed (by me), and Ashley, who I forgot was still on this show. Next week the crew is headed to the City of Lights and also giant rodents, dirty streets, and rude inhabitants – Paris. See you then..
Checkout our podcast, Touching Base. We broke it down there too.
Image via ABC / YouTube