Without even a gratuitous shot of Our Host Chris Harrison casually standing in front of the mansion on a freshly sprayed driveway, ABC wastes no time by dropping the viewer right into the first of four hometown dates. I hadn’t even shoved the first handful of popcorn in my mouth before I was scrambling to take notes on Nurse Nikki’s fingerless gloves. FINGERLESS GLOVES!
It’s the final four people. Game on.
The following information you are about to read is of personal opinion. However, if you or someone you liked on Instagram 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 Tris and Four 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.
Hometown Date One
Kansas City, MO
I had to do a double take when Nikki tiptoed through the meadow to meet Juan Pablo. Upon first peek, I had no idea who she was because I’m not used to her wearing pants. I was trying to make her Clare with bigger hair or Renee with bigger boobs. Turns out, Nikki has expanded her wardrobe to reach beyond her butt cheeks. I consider that a victory!
As mentioned above, I was also distracted by her fingerless gloves. This discovery quickly dissolved into an interesting train of thought:
“I remember my fingerless gloves. They were hot green. Wait. That’s not right. Hot green isn’t a thing like hot pink. What do we call that again? Oh yeah. Chartreuse. My friend Linna gave me chartreuse fingerless gloves in junior high. Linna was awesome. Linna is awesome. She also gave me something to put in my hair to look like Madonna. Madonna is awesome. Well, 80s Madonna was awesome. (CLICK HERE FOR MY THOUGHTS ON THAT SUBJECT.) I wonder where those gloves are? I bet Mama has them in the attic. Or knowing Mama, she just dug them out because Nurse Nikki brought back fingerless gloves in one fail swoop. Oh who am I kidding? Mama has probably been wearing them for the last year. She’s so now. My Mama is cool. I bet those gloves come in handy when you have to text in the cold. What was I doing? Oh yeah. Recapping. Head in the game Lincee.”
Nikki takes Juan Pablo to eat barbecue and it’s the most animated we’ve ever seen him. He absolutely loved every second of the meal and even threatened to steal the Oklahoma Joe’s spicy sauce right there from the picnic table.
With bellies full of chopped meat and greasy fries, Nikki takes Juan Pablo to a mechanical bull to get his Urban Cowboy on. Sadly, there wasn’t a seedy guy in a black mesh t-shirt running the controls. We were treated to a few unfortunate moments of Juan Pablo dipping back and forth with Nikki cheering him on the sidelines.
He is no Buford Uan Davis, that’s for sure. A mechanical bull does not a cowboy make.
Suddenly, the pants made all the sense in the world. I became nervous that Nikki was going to perform some sort of erotic choreography on the bull. A tank top posing as a dress wouldn’t be ladylike on the back of this massive bovine. Thankfully, she just drank a beer with a sweaty, slightly concussion-y Juan Pablo. Phew!
Then it happened. They BOTH mounted and proceeded to awkwardly seduce each other on the back of a bull. I wasn’t even embarrassed. I watched the entire exchange, sans couch cushion, with mouth agape. It was one of the cheesiest things this show has ever done and you could see all over Nurse Nikki’s face that this was a decision that would later fall in the regrettable category.
Based on Juan Pablo’s talents, she should have gone with this honky tonk pick-up line:
Moments later, Juan Pablo arrives with Nikki at the family mansion. Kudos to him for passing his background check and making it through security. This girl is LOADED.
AWESOME TEXT FROM MY FRIEND SUSAN B:
“Nikki’s trust fund makes me wonder why all her clothes prior to this hometown visit came from Justice.”
I agree Susan. I agree.
Nikki’s parents, brothers, butlers, footmen and valets greet their guests and escort them to the ballroom for cocktails before dinner on the veranda. Carson has already set up the food on each plate as everyone sits down, which I thought was extremely weird, but no one seemed to notice. Nikki shares the tales of their adventures, including the fact that she had to ride IN THE BACK OF THE PLANE all the way to Viet Nam. This was confusing for her family. What is considered “back of the plane” on a charter? Juan Pablo attempts to describe what “coach” means, but with his thick accent, everyone assumes that he himself is some sort of coach and welcomes him into the family with open arms and handfuls of cash.
Nikki’s Mom is totally her best friend and is super excited to hear that her daughter is both attracted physically and mentally to Juan Pablo. Her Dad is a little bit more logical though.
Dad: “What do you see in the coach, Nikki?”
Nikki: “I just can’t explain it. It’s magical. I totally feel good about this.”
Dad: “Ah-ha. I will support you. You are smart. Do you have a copy of the prenup in your purse?
Nikki: “Yes Daddy.”
The ever touchy feely Juan Pablo gives hugs all around and escorts Nikki outside. They make out and he rubs her face and fixes her hair. She’s trying to summon the courage to tell him she loves him, but the family driver cranks up the Tahoe, signaling it’s time for Juan Pablo to go. One last kiss and he’s off to Georgia.
Second Hometown Date
My immediate reaction to DAndi is that the ombre hair just isn’t working on her. I’d be willing to bet that she fixes that business before the Women Tell All or After the Final Rose. Mark my words.
She’s dressed to the nines and Juan Pablo is in his signature jewel-tone v-neck and jeans. She takes him to a gun range where DAndi’s inner Annie Oakley is unleashed on an innocent bullseye. The most entertaining part of this date wasn’t the fact that Juan Pablo couldn’t hit the target to save his life, but that the enthusiastic gun range helper guy was totally geeking out over DAndi’s skills.
DAndi was glad they had some fun, relieving a bunch of stress and tension at the gun range, because meeting her family was going to be extremely difficult. Within five minutes of meeting his maybe future son-in-law, DAndi’s dad learned that his daughter had been on several group dates and only ONE one-on-one date. From his viewpoint, this character had spent, generously, a total of 36 compiled hours with his baby girl.
Juan Pablo: “Does this worry you?”
Meet the smartest man on this show ladies and gentleman.
The sister tries to diffuse the situation by recalling that her own parents only knew each other for six months. Hy responds with a quick retort, sparing no expense in calling Juan Pablo “the visitor.”
Juan Pablo has some alone time with the mother and within mere seconds she has fallen under the spell of his cool, magenta sweater and natural pheromones. They even dance together, inviting Hy to join in the fiesta.
Hy does not want to salsa. He wants to drink his scotch and bust the balls of the visitor sitting on his back porch.
JP: “Would you accept me and my daughter into your family?”
Hy: “Put yourself in my shoes Visitor. If someone came up to you and asked for your daughter’s hand and you knew they were dating three other people, what would you say? If it comes down to you and DAndi, we’ll have that discussion. But not now.”
Juan Pablo appreciates his honesty.
Speaking of honest, the sister thinks Juan Pablo is totally hot. So does the brother-in-law. Unfortunately, she doesn’t see that spark in her sister’s eyes and behavior to ensure that this is the guy for her. This totally bums DAndi out. She understands though, because she’s really, REALLY close to being in love. She’s just not there yet. She’s in loke.
She walks Juan Pablo outside. They sit on a bench and make out as he rubs her face and fixes her hair. He tells her that the night was a huge success. And in that moment, her loke grows a little bit more for the visitor.
Third Hometown Date
Cruel ABC makes Renee gallivant on the beach with Juan Pablo before seeing her son at his Little League game. Their reunion was so sweet until Juan Pablo busted up the moment with an awkward, “Hi buddy. I’m Juan Pablo. Your Mom talks about you all the time.”
Instead of screaming, “STRANGER DANGER,” Ben acts mature and greets the rando man with a gentleman’s handshake. Renee beams in the stands as she and Juan Pablo cheer on the little guy standing at the pitcher’s mound.
Renee: “It’s so surreal for you to be here. This is what I do. I’m always at the field. And it’s nice to have you here with me.”
It was in that moment that I knew Renee was not going to get a rose. I don’t think Juan Pablo has any issues with single mothers, but being a single dad himself, he had to be thinking that it would be tough to choose someone who couldn’t completely emerge into his world with his daughter because they had an entirely separate world with their own son. I think he admires Renee very much and respects her. But he’s not in love with her or her world.
Typically I fast forward through commercials but this scene splashed across my screen and I may have cat called:
I’m not sure what they were pimping, nor do I care, but how hot does Harrison look in this photo? Say hello to my new screensaver!
Okay. Back to Renee. Not much happened when meeting her parents, other than the fact that her brother was freaking hot too. I CAN’T HANDLE ALL THE DISTRACTIONS. Ben comes into his room ready for bed with his hair combed in a 1950s style and I nearly died of the cuteness. Her mother told her that you can love your pets but it’s a different love from your husband. Noted.
They walk outside and sit on the exact same bench that he and DAndi sat on. He fixes her hair and rubs her face before kissing her gently, whispering sweet Spanish nothings that she didn’t understand, but were later translated as goodbyes. Poor Renee.
Fourth Hometown Date
Clare’s hometown date opens with some b-roll footage of bees. I would have laughed so hard had birds been featured next, but instead they showed some aggressive squirrels. I didn’t get it either.
Clare meets Juan Pablo in a park by some water. They share a bench, meaning that she sits in his lap as they make out, rub faces and fix hair. She talks about how her Dad brought her here and told her that as far as she could chuck a rock, he’d be within that distance. Then he danced with her because he wouldn’t be there for her wedding. I did not cry.
Clare brings Juan Pablo to a house of six sisters and a mother. He grins because he is in the ZONE! The eldest sister encourages Clare to go for it. The turquoise sister thinks he’s hot. Then Laura enters the picture and everything goes to hell in a hand basket.
Laura begins by saying Mama will never give her blessing because “she isn’t there yet.” Clare wonders why Laura won’t allow Mama to speak? Lincee wonders if Mama is mute? Laura doesn’t care that there are cameras around. NEITHER DOES CLARE! She just wants her family to be happy for her! Laura will not let Clare manipulate Mama. She stands up, blocks the camera view and crosses her arms. Then she gets angry and lurks in the shadows.
Clare tattles on Laura’s behavior to the other sisters, claiming that she is killing her spirit, which as we all know is the same as stealing your sparkle.
Clare: “Tonight is MY NIGHT.”
Lincee: “I have a feeling every night is your night, but Laura is acting weird, so I’ll give this one to you.”
When JP asks to speak to Mama, Laura inserts herself in the conversation and Clare does her best not to lose her freaking mind. Juan Pablo tells her to trust him. He’s got this.
And the pheromones are released. Laura is calm, cool and collected and even leaves Mama to speak Spanish with Juan Pablo.
Ah. That’s why Mama never spoke. She doesn’t speak English! Wait. Nope. Now she is speaking English. She tells Juan Pablo that he is welcome in their home and he will be loved if he chooses Clare. Then she bids him adios.
All the girls line up to hug Juan Pablo’s abs and killer arms. Laura takes a few extra seconds. Clare takes him outside to sit on the traveling bench so they can make out, touch faces and fix hair. Clare loves that he doesn’t care that she comes from a crazy family.
Girl. I think you’re a bit beyond crazy. Crazy is in the rearview mirror.
Our Host Chris Harrison escorts each lady into the holding area. Clare arrives in a tiny hot pink dress displaying major cleavage. Nikki wears a geometric number in her favorite colors: short and tight. DAndi is sophisticated in a one-shoulder black dress and Renee arrives last in a one shoulder emerald green frock.
Immediately, Juan Pablo begins to cry and quickly hands out roses to Nikki, Clare and DAndi. Renee is left devastated, forced to hug all the remaining girls and a weeping bachelor. Who will console our beloved RA?
The answer is, of course, no one. Because Renee handled herself beautifully. She wasn’t rude. She didn’t break down. She had nice things to say to Juan Pablo and was genuine and honest.
Tonight, we follow our bachelor to St. Lucia where he will forgo with three women, whom all succumb to the pressure and melt down in their thatched huts. Harrison promises it to be the most dramatic fantasy suite date episode ever!
Do you believe him?
Until then, I’m all about the shame, not the fame,
The recap will be up as soon as I finish researching what type of mascara Renee uses. Not only does it withstand gracious tears, but also a seagull dropping a sandwich which then landed on her head would not deter the lusciousness of those lashes.
Feel free to share your thoughts on last night’s episode, as well as your feelings on TONIGHT’S DRAMATIC FANTASY SUITE FORGO CARD DATES! Here’s hoping Renee shared her mascara secrets with the remaining three ladies, because there’s going to be A LOT of crying.