What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. Except for STDs.
Clever, clever readers! Thank you so much for those of you who participated in my very first giveaway. Although you are all winners in my eyes, it’s not so much that way with my family and friends.
I’d like to extend the signed Bachelor tote to IHGB reader JennyToo. Behold her clever limerick:
A tat that says “family” is cool,
If you’re a dad with three kids at the pool.
But Brad’s just a guy,
Who needs Shrinks to get by.
Please, thank you, he’s hot, but a tool.
I couldn’t have said it better myself! Congratulations!
As promised, here’s a link to the AOL TV Squad video where I use the word dominatrix. My Mama will be so proud.
Now on with the recap…
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 nephew/former classmate of someone who often purchases the Chick-fil-A cow calendars 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.
I believe Our Host Chris Harrison is finally coming back to us. He was looking strong and dapper in his striped turquoise button down as he reminds the ladies that things are about to get serious…the dreaded two-on-one date is about to change the game. He tells them their journey of love is about to take them out of the mansion. They have approximately one hour to get packed because they are headed to VEGAS BABY! The 22-year-olds jump up and down and scream wildly, excited that this time when they visit Sin City, they won’t be drinking and gambling illegally.
All the girls are given Flip cams and we are treated to stellar footage of walking, waiting for luggage and more walking with jerky camera movement. It had a low budget Blair Witch feel. Michelle again throws gangster signs and Alli dreams of a wedding at one of the drive through chapels on the seedier side of town.
Brad pulls up in a silver stretch limo and is greeted by either the General Manager of the Aria Hotel or the Mayor of Las Vegas. I had gone to make myself a sandwich because I was so bored. The General Mayor is suddenly absent and two more limos pull up with squealing women gasping at Hotter Than Crap Brad’s pecs in his lackluster gray Henley. Hugs all around and Brad leads the ladies up to their suite where they will be forbidden to leave for the next 48 hours.
The appropriate OMGs are uttered and the girls scatter to check out their new digs. Brad pleases and thanks everyone before whipping out a date card from his back pocket. The brunette you can’t ever remember named Marissa says she’s anxious and nervous.
As you should be random girl. As you should be.
“Let’s End Tonight With A Bang”
Shawntel. You remember her, right? She’s the other Chantel. She insists on jumping up into Brad’s arms for a kiss and has unofficially christened it “their thing.” Oh. And she is a funeral director and is super nervous about telling Brad this life-altering bit of information about herself.
Brad arrives in a gingham dress shirt and sweater vest. Shawntel pulls a Fedotowsky and comes bouncing down the stairs in tiny white shorts and an off-the-shoulder hot pink Flashdance top. What a feeling indeed.
Brad takes Shawntel to a “fancy mall” with “icebergs” in the middle. Shawntel laments that she is certainly not in her local Chico shopping center and wonders aloud of this place has a Gap.
Brad: “We are going to have so much fun today. I’m giving you a shopping spree. You can go in any store and buy whatever you want!”
Shawntel: “OMG, REALLY?”
ABC Producer: “Actually Brad, here’s a list of the stores who are contractually obligated to let us have free stuff from their establishments. I’ve marked the mall guide map in red where you CAN NOT GO.”
Shawntel: “Is Forever XXI marked in red?”
Brad: “Does the GNC count? I’m running low on supplements and…
ABC Producer: “Guys! There’s a Fendi store right there. Go. Spend.”
We sit through a 20 minute montage of Shawntel trying on scarves, Brad trying on purple velvet jackets, Brad encouraging Shawntel to buy things and Shawntel looking at an adorable little black shoe with Fraggle Rock feathers on the top. They compliment each other and haul their treasures back to the iceberg to assess the damage. In his best Oprah voice, Brad says, “THIS IS YOURS. THIS IS YOURS. THIS IS YOURS” as he loads Shawntel up like a pack mule in Guadalajara.
Shawntel stumbles through the suite door and lands in a sea of boxes, bags and tissue paper. The other girls are conveniently all there to watch as she unwraps each and every purchase. Their blood pressure rises with each unveiling. Envy is never a pretty color on any woman’s face, but I found it rather hilarious on Michelle’s. Especially when she found out that the bag Shawntel was clutching cost five thousand dollars.
Ashley S. whines in baby talk about how she wished she could have been on the Pretty Woman date. That brunette you don’t know named Marissa gets some more air time so it won’t be totally awkward when she gets kicked off the next night. Shawntel feels that the natives are getting restless, so she goes upstairs to get ready for her date. The ABC Psychotherapist insists that all the girls drink at least two beers. They are on the second round when our Bachelor walks in unannounced.
Brad sits very still, assuming that if he doesn’t move, they won’t notice that he’s still there. Fortunately, Shawntel descends the stairs and they tell each other how cute and wonderful they both look.
Because we can’t have a Brad 2.0 episode that doesn’t include a date on a roof, Brad escorts Shawntel to the top of the Hotel Aria. The words amazing and awesome were used 27 times respectively. I found the entire exchange so dull that I almost started doing crunches to pass the time. Luckily, Shawntel decided that she was confident enough to tell Brad her super dark secret. My interest was peaked and I decided to forgo the crunches for a Dr Pepper and the last remnants of my bag of Beaver Nuggets.
Shawntel: “I need to tell you something.”
Brad: “I can’t handle any more death stories or Daddy issues. Dr. Jaime says that I’m not ready for those sorts of emotions.”
Shawntel: “No. It’s about my profession.”
Brad: “Does it involve a pole and/or a chain that when you pull it, water comes from the ceiling?”
Brad: “Are you a welder?”
Shawntel: “No. I’m a funeral director. I embalm dead people.”
Brad, assuming that Shawntel is totally yanking his own chain, dives right in with a smirk on his face and asks what you have to do to embalm someone. Then Shawntel talks about vein drains while slurping up spaghetti and insists that it isn’t weird.
Later in his talking head interview, Hotter Than Crap Brad can’t keep it together. He is laughing hysterically about how Shawntel used the phrases “orifice leaking,” molding ears” and a cross-eyed cat named Peaches. I have to say, I would almost forgive ABC for their lack of shirtless scenes if they showed THIS Brad more often!
Brad has a serious case of the giggles and Shawntel takes it all in stride. They both scream and laugh when the champagne cork mysteriously pops by the ghost of Shawntel’s last embalming patient. He tells her she’s the hottest funeral director he’s ever met and then radios the ABC intern to start the fireworks. He gives her the safety rose, performs “their move” and Shawntel’s crotch shot is fair game for all of the ABC viewing audience. They kiss as the final explosion erupts. Not the “big bang” Shawntel was hoping for, but she’ll take it.
Jackie, Emily, Random Curly Haired Girl, the Brunette You Don’t Know Named Marissa, Alli, Chantal, Britt and Michelle
“Let’s Go Speed Dating”
I guess the ABC intern forgot to pack the Date Card Table because the envelope is haphazardly shoved through the crack of the suite doors. Jackie ticks off the names of the lucky group date participants and then a hush falls over the crowd as the Ashleys realize they have been strategically chosen by the ABC producers for the dismal two-on-one date. Ashley H. decides to look shocked until she turns around and sees her BeFri crying in her NYU sweatshirt. She quickly changes gear and whips up a few tears.
The group date girls dress in casual flirty-wear, hop in a limo and make their way to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. A lone race car drives the speed limit round and round. Jackie wonders where Brad is? (Head in the game Jackie. He’s the dude going 55 mph in the car behind you. Look alive out there.) He hops out of the car in his NASCAR outfit looking pretty hot. He is excited to tell the ladies that they will be driving in super cute outfits like he has on with a matching helmet. The girls change, prop their helmets under the crook of their arm, wait for the ABC intern to turn on the fog machine and walk in a uniformed line up to the pit.
Britt gets ready by fashioning her hair into a long Rapunzel braid.
Chantal decides not to look at her dashboard and just keep her foot on the gas.
Michelle tells everyone that she looks hot in her NASCAR suit.
Brad, being the sleuth that he is, detects some anxiety in Emily’s face. From her jittery movements, glistening eyeballs and planted on fake smile, he senses that something is going on. He pulls away from the group in the green grassy middle part and she almost immediately blurts out that her fiancé was a NASCAR driver and his career ended at this very track. Then she apologizes if he thinks she is being ungrateful.
Brad: “I’m a jerk.”
Emily: “Don’t say that. How could you know?”
Lincee: You’re right Emily. The PRODUCERS are heartless, shells of a human being.
Emily decides to ride in the car because Brad was so excited to bring the girls here. She drives around twice for Ricky and once for herself, proud that she now has some sort of closure. She’s ready to finally find love again.
Brad takes the ladies to a rooftop so he can sit around a perfectly good pool and not take his shirt off. He pulls Emily aside again for some alone time. Alli is jealous that the worst story gets all the attention. No one touches that comment because it’s dripping with bad karma. Brad basically tells Emily he is scared that he won’t ever fill the shoes of her deceased beloved. Emily knows this is too much for Brad to handle and concludes that he is about to run for the hills like all the other men in her life. She graciously suggests they head back to the party so he can talk to the other girls.
Alli takes him away and begins crying because she doesn’t feel special. Then Chantal pulls him away and begins crying because she used to feel special but now she doesn’t. She “accidentally” drops the word love and then takes it back. She turns on some dramatic waterworks and tells him if he doesn’t like her right now to send her home immediately.
Brad returns to the pool bobbing up and down like a pathetic almost deflated balloon. Knowing that the weak wait for opportunities and the strong take them, Michelle decides to whisk Brad away and fill him back up with her hot air. They make out behind a curtain.
Our Bachelor steals Emily for a third time to give her the safety rose. Chantal feels like a creepy person watching them on a date.
Welcome to our world EVERY WEEK Chantal.
Ashley 1 and Ashley 2
“Come Swing with the King”
Shawntel reads the date card to the forlorn Ashleys. To rub salt in the open wound, she reads another note from someone posing as Harrison: “Two girls. One rose. One stays. One goes.”
Note to reader: Harrison would never rhyme. Gangster rap…yes, but that’s different.
The Ashleys arrive in perfect step, both thanking Brad’s praises of their evening outfit choices in textbook unison. The make their way to an Elvis Cirque du Soleil show rehearsal where acrobats are performing a death-defying feats high above the stage in a contraption that looks like a big diamond ring as “Treat Me Like a Fool” plays symbolically in the background.
The symbolism almost slapped me in the face.
To no one’s surprise because we saw this last year with the whole Lion King on Broadway, the artistic director tells the Ashleys that he is about to test their chemistry while dangling from above in secure harnesses.
Ashley S. immediately begins to melt like a pat of butter on a stack of pancakes before our eyes. She claims that she is fighting inner demons and this competition will NOT be with other Ashley, but with inner Ashley. I was expecting a big revelation that she has a fear of heights, but the producers remembered we’d already been down that road with Michelle, so they opted to edit that part out.
The winning Ashley will be performing for a sold out audience of 1,800 people. The artistic director gets all artistic directory on us and puts each girl in a single spotlight sitting on stage looking up at the competing Ashley. Each speak about the pain of having to compete with their total BFF and how sad they will be if Brad sends them home.
Brad takes the Ashleys to the always awkward threesome dinner date. Perhaps it was clever editing, but it appeared that he cut right to the chase and told Ashley S. that he didn’t think they were husband and wife material because something was missing.
It’s called her late 20s Brad. That’s what’s missing.
He asks Ashley H. to accept his rose. She does. She kisses the bud and gives a generous head nod in the direction of the fetus. Live long and prosper Ashley S.
Ashley S: “I can remember when I go the first impression rose. How can I be going home so soon?”
[Cut to scary guy in black taking Ashley S.’s hot pink luggage away.]
Ashley S: “Finding love is important to me. What’s wrong with me?”
[Ashley cries ugly tears. Cut to Brad and other Ashley getting ready for their Elvis debut. They share a dressing room.]
Ashley S: “The last couple of years have been so hard.”
Lincee: I get it. When I graduated college, my senior exams were super hard. And you have to leave your friends and get a job and join the real world. It sucks!
[Cut to Brad dressed in an Army outfit. He looks like an anatomically ambiguous Ken Doll in drag. I’m going to let you read that sentence again.]
Ashley S: “whah, whah, whah, whah, whah, whah, whah, whah, whah, whah…”
Lincee: I don’t know what she was saying because as I mentioned before, I refuse to translate grown women speaking toddler.
[Cut to Gary the camera guy accidentally getting a shot of Brad’s ambiguous package area followed by a pan of him holding triumphant Ashley's hand. The ABC psychotherapist has asked Ashley S. to just sit and look rejected as Elvis croons “Are You Lonesome Tonight.” The scene bounces back and forth between the couple in love and the lonesome girl in the back of the limo. Lincee virtually high fives the network for such great TV.]
Therapy Time with Dr. Jaime!
Seriously. How is this Chach getting more screen time than Harrison?
Brad: “My initial reaction is to shut off and not hurt anyone.”
DJ: “You’re loyalty is to the mission. I had them put you in camo for a reason Brad. Be all that you can be.”
Brad: “But everyone is crying because I’m kissing all the girls. I’m confused.”
DJ: “You are all on a journey Brad. INDIVIDUAL journeys. You are going to get to deep places with these women.”
Brad: “You mean that ‘end with a bang’ date? Dude. It wasn’t what I thought it was going to be.”
DJ: “No, no Brad. You have to get vulnerable. You already have the strength. They can co-exist.”
Brad checked out of the conversation about five minutes ago. So did I. I was mesmerized by his beautiful baby blues. The good doctor goes on to mention trust five times, experience a few more and ends with an inspiration quote that was not inspiring enough to write down in my notes.
The ladies gather around the den area of the suite asking if anyone is confident. The brunette girl you don’t know named Marissa says something I’m sure was profound. Brad walks in, pleases and thanks the ladies and then pulls Chantal aside for some alone time. He tells the camera that he saw a side of Chantal the night before that he had never seen…DRAMA.
MAYDAY, MAYDAY CHANTAL! PROCEED WITH EXTREME CAUTION!
Chantal decides the best way to show Brad her feelings is by complaining to him that all the girls on the group date thought that it was the Brad and Emily show. Brad reminds Emily that the ABC producers are heartless, shells of human beings and he needed to comfort a woman he unintentionally hurt. Chantal sort of gets the message and slaps him in the face. That’s “their” thing.
Brad heads over to Alli, armed with some chocolate cake thing the ABC intern fetched from the hotel gift shop. He said that he wanted to make her feel special, adding that the green adornment on the little cake reminded him of the first time they met…when she had on a fabulous green dress.
We’re on to you Brad. We all remember Alli’s boobs were spilling from said green dress. How could any of us forget?
The brunette who you can’t remember named Marissa dives in for her last attempt at 15 minutes of fame. She writes Brad a letter. On 18 pages of her spiral-bound notebook. Front and back. Seeing that Brad didn’t read beyond, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” I highly doubt that folded 8th-grade note with the “pull” tab ever made it out of his breast pocket. A for effort Marissa.
Look! I remembered her name!
Michelle puts a choke collar on our Bachelor and leads him to an undisclosed room. She shuts the door, shoves him in a chair and commands that he doesn’t speak.
Brad: “You sure are strong for such a small woman.”
Michelle: “You have big decisions to make. You need someone who appreciates you.”
Brad: “Well thank you, but I’m a bit scared right now, so I’ll just be…”
Michelle: “I SAID NO TALKING.”
Brad: “Mesnick was telling me about this at a Bachelor reunion once. I just think if we established a safe word, I might feel more comfortable…”
Michelle: “ZIP IT. These girls do not realize what’s standing right in front of them. I’m different. I appreciate you. Now go send some girls home. The next time we are together, you can talk.”
Who agrees that we were one “the Xerox machine is broken in the middle of the night” storyline away from Cinemax after dark? Geez. Kudos to ABC for convincing Michelle to leave the leather whip and feather apparatus back at the hotel.
Michelle stalks out of the room looking confident, even without her dominatrix outfit. Brad looks dazed and confused. Our Host clinks the champagne flute. He’s livid that no one told him he and Brad were in matching suits. Someone’s head is going to roll tonight.
Shawntel, Emily and the only Ashley are joined by:
The curly haired girl acts like it’s the end of the world. I’m sure she was upset that she wore pale pink nail polish with a hot pink dress. Marissa doesn’t understand why her note didn’t result in a rose. Bless her heart.
Next week, in the most controversial season of the Bachelor ever, Brad will be taking the ladies to Costa Rica where they will find love on a zip line.
Until then, I’m all about the shame, not the fame,