Bachelor Recap: Fear Factor Edition
Nothing says “Happy Valentine’s Day” like celebrating the forced confession of love from an assortment of barefoot hopefuls battling for the coveted rose bud of a mundane Bachelor who is vying for the affection of a pouty mouth swimsuit model. It’s reassuring to assume that Hallmark probably has a special section in their store for these people.
I’ve been sitting here, staring at a blank page for several minutes, trying to figure out what in the world I’m going to write. When nothing came to mind, my thoughts morphed into trying to figure out if there was ever another time I watched an episode of The Bachelor and barely took notes. It was probably “The Great Sinus Infection of 2007,” but that shouldn’t count because the pounding in my head made it impossible for me to concentrate on Lieutenant Andy Baldwin’s journey to find love that lifted him up to where he belonged. I have no excuse this time. Even Harrison, who can turn a humdrum episode around with a single twinkle in his eye and flash of his signature grin practically phoned in his performance. It’s pretty bad when “gorgeous sunset” is the most riveting phrase in my notes. And this episode even had sharks.
Knowing that this season is already going down in franchise history as mediocre at best, I had an idea that will hopefully inject some life into the finale recap. The idea came to me after I received a fun picture from a reader in Huntsville, Alabama. Winnie sent me a photo of a Bachelor watching party at her house. A few days later, reader Meagan posted a photo of her friends covering their eyes when Courtney was doing something cringe-worthy on my Facebook page. I absolutely LOVE seeing these watching parties! I’m officially extending a formal invitation for anyone and everyone to keep sending photos of your watching party my way via email, Facebook or Twitter. I’m going to do something special with them for the finale. At least we’ll have SOMETHING to look forward to!
With that out of the way, it’s time for me to press onward. Enough procrastinating. If I have to make up this recap (and let’s face it…I typically do) I will find some sort of redeeming quality to share with the masses. I am a professional for heaven’s sake.
The following information you are about to read is of personal opinion. However, if you or someone you poked on Facebook happens to personally know, sort of know, is friends with the niece/former classmate of someone who is obsessed with the Hunger Games trilogy and looks exactly like one of the contestants on the show…none of this is personal and I’m sure they are all lovely people.
The last time we were in Belize as a Bachelor family, it was season four. Bob Guiney chose Estella, got down on one knee and promised to love her enough to one day in the distant future propose with a four-carat Neil Lane sponsored diamond ring.
They broke up moments later.
Now it’s Groban’s turn to choose the hot girl over all the others and promise a lifetime of joy in the vineyard before Hollywood eventually comes knocking, dashing his dreams when his beloved dumps him to star in the Original Lifetime Movie “Oh Snap – Everyone Loves A Winner” in which Meredith Baxter Birney will play Courtney’s aggressive figure skating coach, pushing her to Olympic greatness.
Our Bachelor has narrowed down the field to five girls and one super model. He’s not ready to profess his love to anyone yet, but his insecurities are more than willing to have love and affection poured on him since this week’s roses mark the lucky four who will have the privilege of introducing him to their families.
The ABC graphics department fills some time by providing a convenient cartoon map which uses dotted lines to trace the flight from Puerto Rico to Belize. Brilliant. That killed approximately 30 seconds.
The girls arrive at their sweet mansion in various styles of sleeveless dresses and are overcome by their lavish living quarters and amazing view of the beach. Wait. Harrison just entered the room. That explains the glazed over look and dropped jaws. His freshly pressed royal blue shirt can do that to a girl. Even through a television. Did I type that out loud?
Our Host reminds the ladies that this week leads to home town dates and encourages everyone to make the most of their time with Groban. There will be three one-on-one dates and one group date. Only one rose will be handed out and that’s on the group date. Courtney reads the first date card out loud to the group.
“To Halves Make a Hole”
(This is not a typo. It’s clever word play. Hang in there with me people. We’ve only just begun.)
Groban arrives at the beach house to find all the ladies sunbathing by the shore in their colorful bikinis. Even though Groban admits that he’s not willing to tell anyone about his feelings of love, I found it odd that he was willing to wear the most feminine blue and white striped tank top I’ve ever seen on a man who is not admittedly gay, peeking out of the closet or in the wings ready to take the stage in a rousing rendition of “In the Navy” at Club Boi in Miami Beach.
Lindzi pretends to not notice the darling wee pocket on his girly tank top as he escorts her over to the waiting helicopter. Emily makes some weird comparison that Groban is like cheesecake and I look at my watch. We’re 22 minutes in to this two hour life sucker. Hooray.
Groban and Lindzi hover around a few islands and then end up above a formation that looks like a circle. Groban explains that this is known as the “Blue Hole” and they are going to strip out of their Anthropologie tanks, hold hands and jump from the chopper into the waiting blue sea below. To no one’s surprise, Lindzi announces that she is super afraid of heights and must count on our Bachelor to help her through this life changing moment. To everyone’s surprise, Groban reveals that he shaves his arm pits and must count on Lindzi to provide tips on which razors leave the least amount of razor burn. They agree that their relationship is about to take a new direction, kiss for luck and fling themselves out of the open door.
Lindzi: “I don’t know how I was able to do that. The only thing I can think of is that he’s worth the fall.”
Lincee: “I don’t know how you managed to keep your strapless bathing suit top on. But the bigger mystery is how you don’t look like a soaked raccoon? You applied eyeliner for 10 minutes in your ‘getting dressed for my date’ montage. Is it made of tar? Curiouser and curiouser.”
As with Groban tradition, he paddles over to Lindzi and they attempt to make out while treading water. After nearly drowning a few times, they swim over to the yacht and make out some more. Later, Groban drives Lindzi in a boat to a pier that has a million candles surrounding a picnic. He’s back to his comfort zone, wearing a blue v-neck and army pants. She’s trying to keep America from seeing all her business as she maneuvers on the ground in a skin-tight pink cocktail dress. They talk about taking a leap of faith together. He chooses not to mention that he already did that spelunking with Jennifer the Red Head before dumping her. She concludes by admitting that she wants to take a leap with her heart as well and would love to take him to meet her horse. And her family.
Groban pulls a bottle, pen and paper from behind a decorative pillow. The producers have instructed them to “write their story” on the paper, shove the memory into the belly of the bottle and then hurl it into the placid sea where it will undoubtedly be retrieved from someone vacationing in the cabana next door.
Groban: “Should we draw an illustration?”
Lincee: “Oh please yes!”
Lindzi: “Maybe we should draw something fun on one side and then write something serious on the other side.”
Groban writes an epic fairytale second only to Homer’s “The Odyssey” in length. The poor post-production crew had approximately two minutes of compiled footage of the Grobe and Lindzi to fill a five-minute voiceover as he read the story. Don’t ask me to recall what he said. I was distracted by the fact that there were three moments where Groban and Lindzi were together and they played them over and over again. We can only watch the inaugural cocktail party entrance on her horse in slow motion so many times before it becomes just plain sad.
“Do You Belize in Love?”
Upon hearing her arch nemesis’ name on the date card, Courtney begins to whine about the unfair rules of this dating show. She wallows in “her worst nightmare” and concludes that group dates just plain suck.
Emily, in a darling blue dress, looks forward to spending the day with Groban and hopes that Courtneygate is water under the bridge. She hops on a puddle jumper and the next thing we see is Groban bent over, butt facing the camera at a particularly unfortunate angle as Emily’s plane lands in the middle of a field.
Because I’m an awesome person and have no reason to blatantly waste your time, I’ve decided that Emily’s date will be compressed into one of my easy-to-read beta caps. You may thank me one day when we meet in person.
Bike riding. Beautiful landscaping. Coconut juice sucking. Basketball dribbling. Beer drinking. Ring shopping. Sight seeing. Street dancing. Eight-grade-dance styling. Lincee yawning. Life experiencing. Lobster spying. Groban buying. Lobster guy denying. Lincee laughing. Television crew spotting. Lobster guy agreeing. Boat jetting. Bland t-shirt peeling. Bikini revealing. Snorkel masking. Lobster catching. Lobster losing. Lobster cursing. Lobster catching. Emily swooning. Lobster pinching. Lincee laughing. Sun setting. Lazy Lizard lounging. Bongo drumming. Matthew McConaughey reminiscing. Hall of Fame scrolling. Back to recapping. Home town conversing. Strong connecting. Groban nodding. Home town invitation extending. Toast proposing. “You’re smart” complimenting. Red flag flying. Soft kissing. Tongue thrusting. Fast forwarding. Watch checking. One hour left loathing.
The scene changes to Courtney journaling in her bed about how she feels irritated that Emily is on a date with Groban. She doesn’t understand how Groban could do such a thing to her after Emily treated her so badly. She hasn’t had a one-on-one since Sonoma and has decided that if she is stuck in another group date, she will not be accepting a rose from Groban.
The door bell rings and Lindzi retrieves the date card.
“Let’s Take the Next Step in Our Relationship”
Courtney: “OH SNAP! He hasn’t forgotten about me. I knew it!”
Kacie B. drops a choice explicative and then compares Courtney to a black widow spider.
KB: “It took every freaking fiber of my being to not spring across the room, punch her in face before opening a can of TENNESSEE STYLE whoop A$$.”
Groban picks Courtney up from her helicopter in a bright red v-neck and bland pants. She’s in tiny denim shorts and a green tank top. The producers have arranged for the dynamic duo to climb an old Mayan temple that features roughly 348 steps to the top. My knee hurt just looking at the steep incline. Courtney tells the camera that the spark has fizzled. Ironically, Groban admits that he’s falling in love with Courtney.
They reach a point on the temple in which oxygen is required and decide to set up the picnic. The ABC Intern has taken his script notes and folded it back and forth into a paper fan for Courtney. She dismisses him with an air kiss he will keep in his pocket for eternity. Then she rips Groban a new one. In her best baby talk of course.
Courtney: “I had a tough day yesterday. I was hard for me to know you were with Emily. She’s the one that said nasty things. If I didn’t get a one-on-one, I wouldn’t accept rose. Not going to bring someone home if I don’t know where we’re at. It was so good in the beginning. Now I feel like I am with a friend. I’ve lost the spark Babe.”
Translation: “DANCE MONKEY! DANCE!”
Groban: “I was in your shoes once. I respect it more that you tell me these things. I like you. I am amazed that you’ve been able to hang on. I want a woman with a little bit of edge. I want someone who is weird. I think I’m strange (Lincee insert: AMEN) I’m unique and need someone like that.”
Translation: “Please hang on at least until the forgo card fantasy suite date.”
Once again, our Bachelor has been Bentley’d.
Courtney rambles on about how with each step up the ruin she left behind a little bit of hurt and drama. Groban thinks about his Dad. Courtney tries to figure out a way to include “Mayan Temple Dominator” under “special achievements” on her acting resume.
That night, Courtney continues to work the puppet strings and somehow makes Groban beg for the opportunity to meet her family. She reassures that, for now, the spark has been reignited and then drops the phrase “soul mate” to a beaming Bachelor.
Groban: “I believe in soul mates too. First Ashley. Now you. I picture you in my life and had a crazy moment of clarity up on that mountain.”
Cut to Courtney’s talking head, telling the other girls that the show’s over and for them to pack their brightly colored bags. Then she finger guns the camera man. And rotates to execute a kill shot.
Not familiar with the kill shot? Watch this. Kill shot explained at mark 1:04. An added bonus can be found at mark 1:27. Not only am I a blogger, but I believe in pop culture education as well.
Courtney lies to Groban by telling him that she’s tried to be friends with all the girls from day one, but nothing happens. Instead of being sad or mad about it, she reveals that she’s just bored by their overall blandness.
As if Groban isn’t currently wearing an entire ensemble showcasing the various shades of khaki inspired by zookeepers and those who fought in Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Courtney: “These women are vanilla. It’s exhausting when you have to live with them.”
Groban: “You don’t have any friends?”
Courtney: “Not everyone is lucky enough to have a Constantine.”
Groban admits that Courtney’s inability to bond with women is a bit of a red flag.
Courtney: “Do you know what my job is?”
Groban: “Totally. Swimsuit model.”
Courtney: “I’m the TALENT and have to make everyone happy. That means I have to adapt. I’m not impressed with these women…or girls. Do I need this? No. Are you worth it? We’ll see.”
Groban wises up and sticks his tongue down her throat before she pulls away and saunters off to flirt with the fan boy and then sacrifice him to the temple gods.
“Let’s Sea Whose Family I Will Meet”
(Was the ABC Intern on fire last night or what?!)
Groban breaks into the lady mansion (that is not a sexual innuendo for anything you dirty people) and tip toes to the beds of Rachel, Nicki and Kacie B. He instructs them to put on a bathing suit and meet him outside but the girls selectively hear, “Shave everything from head to toe, slap on some make up and curl your hair.” It took them so long to get ready, that the sun came up. Groban is lounging on a catamaran when the ladies join him for a day full of shark diving. Nicki screams just like the time she was at a Back Street Boys concert in Junior High. Kacie B. screams just like the time she was at a Bieber concert in Junior High. Rachel musters up a look of sheer terror before wallowing in her own dumb luck that she happened to snag the shark swimming date and she is super, duper afraid of sharks. She’s even fearful that sharks will bite her in lakes as well as oceans.
Let’s choose to ignore the fact that her primary school education failed her in defining fresh water versus salt water marine life and stick to the theme of scared women overcoming their phobias with Groban by their side. May I suggest to future contestants that you answer the “fear” portion on your application by stating something along the lines of:
– I have a strong aversion to romantic dinners on the beach.
– I avoid pimped out yachts at all costs.
– I dislike fresh flowers with a passion.
– The last thing I want to do is get a stamp in my passport.
– I absolutely abhor the feel of diamonds on my bare skin.
Groban promises he’ll be by her side the entire time. Here’s hoping he promises never to wear that dingy shirt again. They throw chum out in the sparkling water, just waiting for the death eaters to make their move. Nicki and Kacie B. plunge into the sea without a hint of fear. They happily report that eight sharks are merrily swimming below.
I’m going to call a quick time out. Wasn’t it just a few seasons ago that one of our Bachelors swam with the sharks and the contestants were forced to sign a legal document that the network would not be held responsible should their head be bitten off before lowering themselves into a protective cage? Yet these fools are allowed to frolic around in the open water with nothing between them and a hungry shark but a thin piece of neon green Lycra?
I half expected Harrison to arrive and jump these sharks via water skis in a black leather jacket.
Nicki and Kacie B. become bored with the wildlife and decide that complaining about Rachel monopolizing Groban’s time with her scaredy cat ways is more productive.
Later, the group heads to the rattan furniture for an afternoon of piña coladas. Groban takes each girl aside, providing them privacy when they confess their true love for him. Rachel never admits love, but does acknowledge that she finds him super cool and would love to introduce him to her family. Nicki discloses that she wants her parents to see for themselves why she’s falling hard for him. But Kacie B. goes for the jugular by placing a kicky pink flower in her hair, pulling Groban into the hot tub and confessing that she’s falling in love with him and wants her family to see all the wonderful things she sees. Naturally, she gets the date rose.
In an opposite than dramatic so let’s call it an ordinary twist, we discover that the rattan furniture is actually the outdoor patio for the lady mansion and Courtney has witnessed the entire rose exchange go down from the balcony above.
Courtney: “I’m not worried about Kacie B. She’s a little girl in a little boy’s body.”
She leaves the balcony at the annoyance of the producers because moments later, Kacie B. and Nicki both warn Groban about “someone” in the group who is “not here for the right reasons.”
KB: “More than anything, we want you to be happy.”
Nicki: “This is really serious. We care so much about you. We see so much and care about you possibly getting hurt. It’s hard not to say something.”
Groban: “Okay. Then say something.”
Nicki: “Be cautious about Courtney.”
KB: “Tread lightly.”
Groban: “Hey. That’s my line.”
Everyone arrives to the rose ceremony in their favorite maxi dress and bare feet. All are served fruity, tropical drinks. Emily initiates the “who’s feeling confident tonight?” conversation and it takes two seconds for Courtney to ruffle the ladies’ feathers, including the several hanging from Rachel’s ear lobe.
Courtney: “I’m feeling good. I have an umbrella in my drink with a cherry on a toothpick, I’m in Belize. OH! IT TASTES SO GOOD WHEN IT HITS YOUR LIPS! I’m not on the same page as you guys. I’m not feeling somber. My glass if half full. Besides, Groban’s not the ONLY guy in the world.”
Emily stage whispers to Nicki, “DID SHE JUST SAY GROBAN IS NOT THE ONLY GUY IN THE WORLD?” right as Harrison walks in looking as fabulous as one possibly can.
Harrison: “I know I’m not the man you were hoping to see.”
Harrison: “I talked to Groban and he decided that he would wear a striped black and white tie with a shirt the color of fungus. Sometimes, you have to pick your battles. With that said, he asked me to tell you that his mind is made up and there will be no cocktail party tonight. I suggest you finish your rum-soaked drinks, put on your shoes and follow me to the pier.”
Ladies: “We didn’t wear shoes.”
Harrison: “Good Lord. I’m working with amateurs.”
Groban arrives looking ridiculous and immediately diffuses everything Harrison just said about being ready to send some girls packing by requesting a private audience with Courtney. She skips up to his side, he grabs her hand and they walk off behind a banana tree to discuss important topics.
Groban: “I need to know you are in this for real.”
Groban: “That’s good enough for me.”
Along with Kacie B., roses are handed out to Nicki, Lindzi and Courtney. She accepted her rose, returned to her assigned position by Emily, inhaled deeply over the opening of the bud and then gave Emily the biggest “suck it” look in the history of dirty looks.
Of course we all knew he would give Courtney the rose. But I have to admit that Emily was a bit of a shock. She conducted her reject interview with as much dignity as she could, wishing that she could have taken back her decision to tattle on Courtney. Then she started crying.
Don’t worry Em. You’re a smart girl. Who can gangster rap! You’re going places.
See ya on the Bachelor Pad Rachel!
So that’s it! Next week is the ever popular home town dates. Who do you think is going home? Can Groban handle the pressure? Remember to send me your Bachelor party watching pictures and remember…NO SPOILERS IN THE COMMENT SECTION PLEASE!
Until next week, I’m all about the fame, not the shame,