Bachelorette Recap: Romantic, Enchanting, Atlantic City
The dreams of eleven boys who are pretty
Came true in Atlantic City!
That’s right, readers. Our favorite reality show traveled to the birthplace of the Miss America pageant. Instead of forcing the guys to get shirtless at a random pool party back in Los Angeles, ABC decided to showcase the remarkable physiques of our contestants in a more dignified manner. The dudes were oiled up, given a pair of tiny Speedos and strongly encouraged to find a talent. Although there was only one crowned, they were all winners in some form or fashion.
Well, almost all of them.
The following information you are about to read is of personal opinion. However, if you or someone you liked on Twitter happen to personally know, sort of know, is friends with the nail stylist or bowing instructor of someone who is obsessed with the fictional life and devastating death of Matthew Crawley like me 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.
A familiar aroma of driftwood, bourbon and First Class priority seating fills the sunken living room as the boys adjust their posture for the arrival of Our Host Chris Harrison. Wearing an extremely bright plaid shirt, he casually preps them with details of the upcoming days. In a nutshell: 13 are left, one group date, two one-on-one dates, no rose = going home.
Harrison mentions that Des is currently in Atlantic City, meandering down the boardwalk in a darling navy coat waving and smiling at the local law enforcement. (Was it just me or did her coat tie around the neck? Anyone?)
A quicky flight across the states, and the boys whoop and holler as they explore their new digs. One observant suitor notes that Atlantic City is just like Las Vegas, except it’s on the ocean.
First One-On-One Date
“Let Our Love Shine Through”
Chiseled Brad shows a bit of emotion when his name is read from the date card. He excuses himself to primp in private as the other dudes discuss the unlikelihood of his return. Shirtless Zak doesn’t see a connection and Mikey T. thinks he’s a “good kid but too reserved.”
I was convinced Brad was just flying below the radar, confident that the resident gossipers, teeth whiteners and hashtagers would sabotage themselves in due time before he swept Des off her feet. Things were looking good on the boardwalk too! They screamed bleeped out explicatives in the human catapult, sampled salt water taffy, stole chocolate covered pretzels from a conveyor belt, therefore compromising the sanitation of the entire batch but whatever, bobbed up and down on a carrousel and were creepily stalked from 50 floors up by Shirtless Zak. What more could a girl want in a super fun Atlantic City date!?
I’ll tell you what – and entire living room, complete with coffee table, made out of sand! The pair settles in on the shore for some pre-dinner cocktails. They talk about his son and how there must be a connection not only as a potential wife, but a potential mom.
Des: “Brad is great. I just need to dig in a little more and see if he’s the type I can see myself marrying.”
Annnnnnnnnnnnd thus begins the demise of Brad.
The dinner conversation was a boring mixture of stale questions followed by succinct, yet enthusiastic answers.
Brad: “So the slingshot thing, huh?”
Brad: “I mean, I was like, whoa!”
Des: “Me too!”
[Brad tries to win Des over with his rugged good looks. Des forces herself to not make eye contact with the gorgeous man across the table and pretends that her beef tenderloin and glass of chardonnay are the most interesting things she’s ever seen.]
Brad: “You’re amazing.”
Des: “So are these mashed potatoes! But who cares about dinner. Wanna go up to the top of the lighthouse?”
Brad and Des leave their half-eaten dinner to climb the long and winding staircase. Between huffs and puffs, the duo choked out an interjection or two, so the other wouldn’t think they were completely out of shape. Des’ “cool!” was met by a passionate “pretty” from Brad, which was later countered by the ever popular “awesome” around the halfway mark. After that, they didn’t talk anymore due to lack of oxygen to their brains.
They finally arrive to the top and begin (silently) to admire the view. After a generous 30 seconds, Des lowers the hammer.
Des [still puffing]: “Brad. Great! Not for me. Don’t see it.”
Brad [still huffing]: “Shocked. Why? Confused.”
Des [checking pulse]: “Chemistry. Not there. So sorry.”
Brad [saving energy for the trip down]: “Luck.”
Back at the penthouse, a mysterious man collects Brad’s suitcase. Shirtless Zak’s eyes widen to reveal whites that could rival his own teeth. Mikey T. high fives the Federal Prosecutor. And then there were 12.
Des: “Saying goodbye was tough. And it’s not just because I couldn’t feel my legs. I just didn’t see forever with Brad. Can someone carry me down? I’m feeling a bit light headed.” #ABCinternrocks
I’m looking for My Mr. Right
The boys are all corralled into some sort of ballroom in preparation for yet another visit from Our Host. And he’s not alone. As the resident master of ceremonies for the Miss America pageant, it’s no surprise that Harrison has the reigning queen at his disposal.
OHCH: “The 11 of you will be competing in a pageant. Mr. America. And this guy will be your coach.”
Enter Christopher Dean. Let the record reflect that I would watch an entire show based around him alone. Someone get on that ABC.
Christopher Dean encourages the contestants to explore the nearby table to see what will work with their individual talent pool. Juan Pablo immediately picked up a baton and started twirling. I found this utterly adorable and have written a strongly worded letter that he needs his own show as well. The ABC fall lineup is practically writing itself people!
Shirtless Zak claims that he doesn’t know how to play the guitar very well, yet he admits that he wrote a song about Des and will be performing it center stage. They say…
NO! I WILL NOT GO THERE. I WON’T EVEN MENTION THE NAME OF THE SONG THAT MADE HE WHO MUST NOT BE NAMED FAMOUS AS A ONE HIT WONDER SENSATION IN CHIJUAJUA, MEXICO. #availableoniTunes
While #Kasey stomped around in tap shoes and Drew worked hard to memorize the balcony scene from “Romeo and Juliet,” Miss America conducted mock interviews with some of our contestants. We learned that ironically, the Federal Prosecutor does not think quickly on his feet, Chris looks great in heels and Mikey T. wants to be taken seriously. Love his mind. Pay no attention to his rippling muscles and tribal tats.
Christopher Dean sashays in with a load of swimsuits and begins passing out trunks according to the neatly labeled names marked on each one. Juan Pablo was given a tiny pair of Speedos and he LOVES IT! Shirtless Zak is shocked that he’s been given a budgie smuggler and I’m forced to remind the television set that he was indeed IN HIS UNDERWEAR on DAY ONE. Of course the ABC Intern would assume you would embrace the banana hammock, dude.
Our Host Chris Harrison takes the stage as the effervescent emcee and warms up the audience while the scholarship contestants oil each other up backstage. Des is poised and ready at the judges table. She is joined by Miss America and the Mayor of Atlantic City – a charming man who looks like he is practicing the Vulcan state of kolinahr to get him through the next painful hours. #thingsilearnedfromSheldonCooper
The interview portion of the pageant is first. #Kasey talks about being a giver in a relationship. Speedo Zak convinces us that he’s the fire in a relationship because someone needs to fuel the romance. #barf If Brooks were an animal he would be a lion. I found this odd because earlier he called Des a unicorn and one would think that he would want to be the same mythical creature as the one he’s pursuing, but what do I know?
Next up…the talent competition.
#Kasey told an enchanting story of how, when he was little, he cut and stapled some metal on the bottom of his sneakers and then shuffled outside to tap on the concrete in the back yard. Even though my analytical side was having trouble figuring out A: how young #Kasey was physically able to staple metal and B: how sad it must have been to have a “yard” made of concrete, the audience rejoiced in his sporadically thrown together tap dance.
Mikey T. channeled his inner Michael Jackson, complete with hip thrusting, crotch grabbing and signature hat. Then he channeled his inner Demi Moore and began an intricate strip tease dance. He finished off the classy number by doing some upside down pushups against the wall. #lovemeformymindnotmybody
Brooks owned the fact that he can’t make his pecs dance like Mikey T. What he does have is a wee ukulele and quick wit. A sense of humor will get you far, folks. Especially when you smash your wee uke with the force of a thousand lead singers of an 80s hair band.
Villain Ben spun a few Get-In-Shape girl ribbons around. Chris wore high heeled shoes and twirled hula hoops on his arms. #awkwardinagoodway Bryden reverse dry humped the stage. #awkwardinabadway
And then there was Drew. He’s always reminded me of a character from a 50s television show. I feel like he should be following the Beaver around or getting advice from a father who knows best. There’s a wholesomeness about him that was further proven when he chose to recite Shakespeare as his talent. You can imagine my surprise when Drew then took the stage in his swimsuit to reveal an impressive set of abs. I may have paused the DVR and thanked the good Lord for whoever invented Technicolor.
Our Host is pulled away from the single malt whiskey and hand rolled cigars in his private dressing room to reveal the winners. Brooks laughed his way to second runner-up. Speedo Zak twanged his way to first-runner up. And it was #Kasey who was named king!
Of course, being announced King Bachelor got him a felt crown and kicky sash, but nothing as far as Des was concerned. Not even free time in the non-bubbling hot tub.
At the after party, Chris takes time to show Des that he’s more than a nice set of legs in a strappy pair of heels. He’s a poet. Get out of town, because SO IS SHE. Give them a pen and a paper napkin in a coffee shop and just watch the creativity fly!
Villain Ben ruffles some feathers by taking his alone time mere feet away from the other men. Des is totally drinking his Kool-Aid.
Speedo Zak uses his alone time to secure a spare six string and serenade Des with three more verses of his original hit. He somehow secures the date rose and then he excuses himself for a teeth whitening treatment.
My absolute favorite part about the after pool party was the segment they showed of James all alone in the penthouse. He had no problem slipping into a bubble bath, puttering around in a terrycloth robe or stretching out in the big bed that he had all to himself! Which brings us to…
Second One-On-One Date
“Can Our Love Weather the Storm”
Raise your hand if you love that #Kasey was wearing his crown and sash when Des came to pick James up?
In lieu of an extravagant over-the-top date, ABC asked the American Red Cross to fly James and Des over the devastated properties hit hardest by Hurricane/Super Storm Sandy. I like how ABC is introducing this feature into the date lineup, but nothing could have prepared me for Manny and Jan.
Manny and Jan are an adorable couple who have been married for almost 40 years and essentially lost everything in the storm. They credit the Red Cross of America for helping them through a very tough time. After hearing their story, Des and James agree to let them have their fun night in Atlantic City. Although Jan looked a bit perplexed when Des explained her situation as “I’m here in Atlantic City going on a bunch of dates,” she and Manny were excited to hop in the car and see what adventure was in store for them. It was their first time in a limo.
“FOLLOW MANNY!” I screamed at the television set. Instead, we followed Des and James eating pizza, drinking beer and listening to James tell about how he cheated on his childhood girlfriend when he was a freshman in high school.
As I was screaming “WHERE’S MANNY!” again, the scene changed. The cutest New Jersey couple ever was having a private dinner and feeding each other pasta. A random dude walks up with a package and I was THIS CLOSE from being overwhelmed that Harrison had slipped them a fantasy suite card. Instead, it was a gift from the American Red Cross. It was their wedding album, fully restored from the storm. Jan had plucked it from the devastation when they left to go to the shelter. Apparently their love and affection for one another inspired so many people that they wanted to help restore their memories.
GIVE MANNY AND JAN A SHOW ABC! I WILL WATCH THEM ALL DAY LONG. AND CAN SOMEONE GET ME A KLEENEX? I’M A BLUBBERING MESS!
As if that isn’t enough, they are escorted into a ballroom where none other than Darius Rucker is there to sing a private concert for our love birds. HOOTIE! MY HEART CAN’T TAKE IT! I ONLY WANNA BE WITH YOU HOOTIE! HOLD MY HAND! Manny begins speaking Italian and Jan gets all hot and bothered. Des and James crash the party and I quite literally will James to dance with Jan AND HE DOES IT! The fact that she was barefoot makes her all the more freaking adorable.
Naturally, this entire date makes me see James in a new light, yet I’m bothered by the accusations from next week that he is a total tool bag who is on the show so he can be the next Bachelor. Do we believe this? Thoughts? SAY IT AIN’T SO! WHY AM I CAPS LOCKING SO MUCH IN THIS DATE?
On the opposite end of that spectrum, my other favorite Bryden has decided that his feelings are not where they should be. He didn’t get any alone time with Des on the group date (and Whose fault is that Soldier Boy?) and he’s not sure he would accept the rose should she offer it to him.
I’m going to chalk this one up to Bryden being too cool to ever watch this show, therefore he has no idea how the politics work. Remember, she’s practically told him twice now to make a move and kiss him. I’m sure that 10 other sharks circling the prey is a bit intimidating. And reverse dry humping stages will not get you any closer to the prize. #headinthegameBry
The Federal Prosecutor also feels that now is the time to make his move. He spells out her name and ticks off adjectives that describe her. D is for down-to-earth. E is for easy to talk to. S is for a smile that lights up a room. And that’s where he ends because coming up with two more E’s to finish out her name is impossible. It’s not like she’s energetic or enthusiastic or enchanting. He diffuses this laziness by sticking his tongue down her throat.
Meanwhile, Chris shares that he’s excited where they are going. This somehow transitions into family talk and Des valiantly declaring that she is an independent woman, complete with Kelly Clarkson ring tone. Chris finds this super attractive and comments on how comfortable they are, to which Des replies, “We’re BFFs!”
Chris is shocked that he has maneuvered himself in the friend zone. Could it have been the heels? Unsure, he takes her face and sucks it. Friends don’t make out. Sure some have kids together (I’m looking at you Villain Ben) but most of the time, they aren’t familiar with the intricacies of each other’s tongues.
Harrison arrives looking regal in purple. He smells like Prince Harry and a polo match. He clinks his champagne glass and hands the boutonnieres over to Des. Roses go to:
High Heel Chris
Other Zack handles his rejection well at first, and then he cries. He must be over tired.
Next week, the cast flies to Germany. My kingdom for Brooks in some lederhosen! Is Ben still the villain? Do you think James is there for the right reasons? Will Bryden crack under the pressure and go home next week? Sound off in the comments.
SIDE NOTE: For those of you who are interested, IHGB reader Leslie was kind enough to research the girly tank tops as seen on Villain Ben and Villain Ryan. Check out the women’s section of your local JC Penney and you too could sport this darling top!
I’m all about the fame, not the shame,