OK people. This is it. This is the episode we've been waiting for. The reason we all stick around for this show, season after season.
We laughed. We cried. We shook our heads at Chris. We swore. We were shocked. We celebrated. We had more than one person outted for being there "for the wrong reasons." (DRINK!)
The episode starts where it left off last week -- with Kelsey laying on the floor with the medic and the eyes rolling around in all the other girls' heads.
And it just gets worse from there. She's joking around with the medic about brownies, then she's overheard saying "Chris has to give me a rose now for sure!" as she's laughing into her oxygen mask. FAKER! Then the kicker: she requests to talk to Chris.
Of cooooooooourse she does.
Kels is suddenly sitting up and feeling better. She ensures Chris she's fine - she's just a little overwhelmed by her emotions and her worry that she upset him. She lets Chris pick her up off the floor then they hug and kiss. Because that's appropriate. She returns to the girls and tells them she fainted because she didn't have time to process her emotions. Then she's dazzling them with stories of how funny she was during her self-diagnosed "panic attack." What amazing spirit Kelsey has! She's a fighter!
One minute she's laughing like a maniac and the next she's schooling the girls again on how serious Chris takes this process and this decision. Just what all the other girls love: Kelsey speaking on Chris' behalf. It's all so....gross. And calculated. And sociopathic. (The new word of the night: DRINK!)
Ashley interviews that they don't really even know if Kels' story about her husband is true. She asks the producers for paperwork. Smartest thing Ashley Eyelashes has said in a while methinks.
We head to the rose ceremony (feels weird at the beginning of the show, right?) and once again Ashley's interviews return to just whining and crying like a brat. It's like eyelashes on a chalkboard - bah-hahahaha!
Much to our chagrin, Chris keeps Kelsey and Ashley and gets rid of Samantha and Mackenzie. I can't say I'm sad about either of those two departing but it would have been nice to see Chris show some cojones and do some choppy choppy of some crazies.
But then we wouldn't have had the magic of the next hour and a half, so I'm going to give him a big tractor sized pass.
Quote of the night: "Why is Kelsey still here? I want to punch her right in the teeth holder." -- comes from Kaitlyn, who once again provides the best comic relief of the week (with Carly as a close second).
On to South Dakota
We find out the next port-o-call in this voyage o' love is Deadwood, South Dakota, land of Wild Bill Hickok, Calamity Jane, Mount Rushmore and the Badlands (Kelsey's fave).
Next we are subjected to a very, very strange photo shoot of Chris dressing up in some wild west threads, as well as doing his best "Naked Cowboy" imitation in a tub. Hmm...they really maximize the humiliation when you're the star of this show, don't they?
This week we will have a one-on-one date, a group date and a two-on-one date. At last! It's ON!
First date card shows up and it's for Becca: "Let's give love a shot." Yeah! Go Becca! Kelsey is "not happy." That's an understatement.
Is she for real? Is she going to eat Becca's liver with fava beans and a nice Chianti? Like I said to my friend Beth, she's got a very "Hand that Rocks the Cradle" vibe to her. Trés sociopathic (DRINK!).
Later at the hotel, Carly, Whitney and Kaitlyn confront Kelsey on her behavior at the rose ceremony. Oh baby, they are brave. And I think they are now my idols. In fact I think they should be the next Charlie's Angels. I'll write the script.
Whitney goes first and points out that Kelsey was laughing during her panic attack and using her situation just to get more time with Chris. Carly comes right out and tells Kels she's just not very nice.
Kelsey of course says that she has no idea what they are talking about, then interviews that they are just confused because she's smart and uses big words. She didn't go through all she did in life to be ganged up on by a bunch of silly girls, damn it! And she certainly didn't come there to be defeated. She's in it to win it!
Becca and Chris meet up and it turns out they are going horseback riding. Isn't this the second time ABC has given him this date? He's a farmer not a cowboy, people. But anyway, it's Becca's first time on a horse but she looks like a pro. I find myself quite jealous: if that was me I'd have to request a helmet and a step ladder and I'm sure you'd see my butt crack at multiple points.
Becca and Chris seem to have a legitimately good time getting to know each other and joking around. You know why? Because Becca is mature, intelligent and interesting and has a great sense of humor. She may be the most normal girl ever to walk on this show.
They swap five year plans and both admit they want, like, a kazillion kids. Ouch. Becca opens about past relationships and how she's been hurt, but in a very natural, conversational way. She doesn't throw her whole life story at Chris - just explains to him why she is insecure about relationships and he actually does the same. She interviews that she wants to kiss him but she'd be doing it in front of America...and in front of her dad. Again, has any other girl on this show ever cared who they kissed in front of?
The answer is: No. Never. None.
Chris gives Becca the rose and since he's holding back, she goes in for the kiss. I know he is holding back to respect her wishes and I dig that about him. It's the lone sweet moment in a sea of crazy shit that happens this week.
Now let's move on to something more exciting.
The next date card shows up and it's the group date. It's for Whitney, Britt, Kaitlyn, Carly, Jade and Megan and it says "Let's make sweet music together." Once again Megan is confused about the meaning of the date card and the girls have to tell her what's going on. (BHH)
That means -- DUN DUN DUN -- the two-on-one date is for: Kelsey and Ashley!
The girls get dropped off on Main Street, Deadwood and head into the local saloon. They find out that Chris loves country music and on the date they are each going to write and perform a song. Gulp. Carly and Megan are excited; Jade, not so much. Big & Rich show up to help them out. Whitney is STOKED because she loves their music.
They each get going writing their tunes. Big (or is it Rich?) gives Jade a pep talk as she finds herself on the "struggle bus" because she's a perfectionist and knows this isn't her bag. Control freak! Rick (Big?) takes her for a sprint down Main Street to get her (creative) juices flowing.
Back in the saloon, Jade and others are minding their own business writing their songs when Britt slithers up to Chris in a corner and drapes herself all over him (note: he doesn't do anything to resist). It's obviously not a private moment and all of the girls catch a peek of the canoodling. It deflates a lot of girls' confidence, including the usually unflappable Kaitlyn and Whitney.
The singing begins and Chris goes first. He has a terrible voice but the lyrics and the music are adorable. Britt's up next and even though she's a little squeaky she's got tons of confidence (of course she does. She's going to be a STAR!).
Whitney's a little rough and Kaitlyn does a rap about beavers (I think) and whiskey. Megan has a legit great voice and Jade gets through hers and its actually not bad. But Carly rocks it out -- both with her lyrics and her performance -- with Chris sitting next to her on stage. It's sweet and it's authentic. Chris interviews that he will smile for a week and a half because of this date.
Sorry, but that feeling won't last long, my friend.
Back at the hotel, Ashley and Kelsey get the date card: "Two girls, one rose, one stays, one goes. Let's have good times in the Badlands. Chris"
Kelsey cheers because - the Badlands. Ashley looks confused.
The group date gathers for a cocktail party and Chris gives his first alone time to Jade because he knew she was so nervous during the date. I see her opening up to him more, but I still don't see them connecting -- even though I want them to. She seems like such a natural choice for him. Based on what we see later, I'm guessing she's just not aggressive enough for him.
The girls notice there's no rose on the table during the date. Britt thinks Carly is going to get the rose because of her song. Kaitlyn and Chris swap feelings. They seem to be on the same page. Kaitlyn feels confident.
Then Chris has alone time with Britt who he says he has "a weird connection with." Next thing we know, they leave the bar. Yup, they just leave. They run hand in hand down the street as the other girls look on. How rude!
From Chris' People blog I learn the plan all along was for him to pick someone to take to the Big & Rich show, where the rose would be waiting. He didn't plan on it being Britt from the get go, he just got the feeling when he was with her and instead of filling everyone else in, chose to bolt. Not cool. All the other girls were left in a bar confused and upset.
Big & Rich pull Chris and Britt on stage and Chris presents her with the rose in front of the entire crowd. Britt interviews that sure, the other girls would have loved to see Big & Rich but for her it was about her virgin country music experience with Chris. Makes sense to her. They dance and kiss and I want to grab Chris and tell him to stop thinking with his peter. She's there for the wrong reasons!! She doesn't shower!
The girls back in the bar realize Chris and Britt traipsed off on a set up and are probably smearing lipstick on each other as they speak. Then Britt and Chris show up and -- awkward! The looks coming from the girls are STONE COLD. (Sidebar: did Britt just wipe off her mouth?? Subtle.) The coward tells them he's out and leaves them to rip each other apart. Guess no one's smiling any more, eh Chris? I can't believe he agreed to this debacle.
Carly is crying. Whitney's eyes are only open in slits. Kaitlyn looks deflated. Whitney tells us how Britt hates country music and is the last person who should have gone on that date. Kaitlyn tells Britt they are all humiliated. Britt offers a half-hearted apology, but Jade says they don't want her sympathy. Kaitlyn -- our sarcastic, hysterical firecracker from Canada -- is in tears and rushes off to the bathroom where Carly is already crying in private. It's a hot mess.
I can't say I remember another season where this many girls on a group date got THIS upset about something, at the same time. They all seem to think it's the "Chris & Britt" show and that their time with Chris doesn't mean what they thought it did because he has so much obvious chemistry with someone else. Someone who is "stunningly beautiful."
To make the girls feel better I'd like to remind them of the following:
1. Britt doesn't shower or wash her hair (ever). 2. Britt is BFF with Kelsey. 3. Britt doesn't shave her legs. 4. Britt wears her make-up to bed. 5. Britt doesn't want children (Chris wants 4-6). 6. Britt is a waitress in L.A. (code for wannabe actress).
I really think Chris is blinded by Britt's beauty and feminine wiles. She knows what she's doing and what she's doing it with. This isn't her first rodeo. We could all learn a thing or two about her man-catching magic act. I've picked up a few things so far, including but not limited to: always look up at the guy longingly and smile at him like he's the only thing in the room; touch him a lot; wear lots of bright lipstick that you can use to mark your territory; act like everything the guy says is the most fabulous, intelligent and sexy thing you've ever heard in your life - oohing and aahing doesn't hurt either; don't wash your hair.
No offense to the male species, but it's not that hard to figure out how to get their attention. Britt lights up like a pinball machine whenever Chris is around. She makes him feel special and good about himself because she portrays herself as very positive, open and affectionate. What dude can resist?? And I get it. Its probably a comfortable spot for Chris to be in - in a sea of all this awkward, faux dating with 15 girls who are constantly looking to him for reassurance. He's obviously gravitating toward someone who gives him instant gratification and makes him feel safe and loved and appreciated, without having to do all the work.
The problem, dudes, is that we are women and that kind of act is just that, an act. It's not sustainable if you are looking for a serious, two sided, grown up relationship.
We saw this same situation with Courtney in Ben's season and Tierra in Sean's season. I'm 99% sure Britt isn't "there for the right reasons" (DRINK!). She is either looking to be the next Bachelorette or to get her entry into the entertainment world. There's no way she wants to live on a farm in Iowa. No way.
Ash and Kels get dropped off to Chris who is standing next to a helicopter. They rush out to hug the hell out of him. Ash is unfortunately wearing her shortest crop top and her longest eyelashes. Babe, that's not what you wear when going into battle.
Kelsey drops some knowledge on her fellow passengers in the helicopter and annoys Ash to death. They all look like they are in hell. I learned from Chris' blog that this ride was actually two hours long. Yikes.
They arrive at what appears to be a big four poster bed plopped in the middle of the Badlands. Very exotic.
Chris whisks Ash away first and gives her some wine to lube her up (in hindsight, a mistake). She decides that to ensure victory she needs to take down her opponent right away. She gives him an earful about Kels being fake and not gelling in the house. She claims she had to say it on behalf of all the other girls.
Chris says he appreciates the information, but it takes up a bulk of their time together, and we know how he feels about that. Ashley interviews that she's confident that Chris will pick her because she's "sexy" and Kels is most definitely, NOT.
Next up is Kelsey. Chris barely listens to her as she tells him how perfect a wife she'll be for him (psycho). He dives right in: he tells her he wants to be with someone social who other people want to be around and immediately rats out Ash for telling him that all the girls think she's being fake.
Kels gets a homicidal look in her eye and starts formulating her revenge. She interviews that what Ash did was "hurtful" and goes on to call her "a Kardashian who wants to go on her princess date who has way too much make-up on to be genuine." Ouch.
Then: "I am a woman. She thinks she's playing a game but I'm not."
She gets back to the bed and glares at Ash with the intensity of three hot suns. Seriously, is this woman a serial killer? i'm starting to really wonder.
Sidebar: Ash's eyelashes look ginormous in the light of day. Are they growing?
Kels confronts Ashley and it's super creepy. Ashley defends herself saying she's not dumb just because she doesn't use a bunch of big words, and that they both have Master's. I wish Ashley had held it together better in front of Kelsey and looked her square in the eye, but I'm guessing she was caught so off guard she was just seeing red.
Ashley jumps up and runs off to give Chris a piece of her mind. She finds him and the wheels come off the bus. She lays into him right away. This next segment goes like this:
- Ashley wails "I can't believe you tooooooooooold her!"
- Ashley is sobbing and snorting on Chris.
- She actually says "It's so stupid - every time I'm around you I have to cry. It's like what?" It is like what Ash. What!?
- She cares so much more than the other girls (snort snort).
- Throughout the most epic crying episode ever her mascara does not run. (Ash, what kind is it!? We must know!)
- Chris gives Ash the break up speech. He flat out says she wouldn't fit into his world.
- Ashley is sobbing and snorting on Chris. Wait I already said that.
- Ash asks him sarcastically if he really thinks Britt wants his lifestyle more than her (good one).
- She stomps off and leaves him. Then shouts at him and comes back and hugs him. She's sobbing and snorting.
- He's so nice and patient. He hugs her and whispers to try to calm her down.
- She stomps off again. For good this time.
- She sits on a rock by herself, talks to herself and laughs and snorts then walks off camera.
Back at the hotel, the intern comes and carts off Ashley's bag. The girls look heartbroken. Is Megan crying?
Chris goes back to the bed to talk to Kelsey and you can literally still hear Ashley crying in the background. Chris tells Kels he let Ash go and she immediately tries to hug and comfort him like he did it for the both of them. Not so fast honey -- you're getting the boot too! (Beth, you called it!)
Unprecedented! Have we ever had NO ROSE given out on a two-on-one date!? I don't think so.
Chris tells Kels the requisite niceties then says "take care" and hops in his helicopter and bugs out. LIKE A BOSS!!!
Find your own way home suckers! You think once he left, Kels and Ash battled to the death out in the Badlands? I like to think they did.
Back at the hotel, the intern comes back to take Kelsey's bag and the girls flip the fuck out.
I've never seen a group of girls on The Bachelor let go like this before. That's how sociopathic Kelsey was. (DRINK!)
Carly pops open some bubbly and pours it into 7 glasses LIKE A BOSS!
So that's it my friends. How was that for a fantastic episode? Way to inject a little energy in this thing. We got rid of some dead weight and now it will be a battle to the finish.
I can't wait!
See ya next week. With bells on!