Well, what else were they supposed to do? With Normal-Guy Chris,Groucho Roberto, the Frankfurter, hell, even alcoholic mayhem-bully, Craig Walken-Drunk, all missing from the show there was little else to fill the two hour slot but to pound the also absent Wrassler into dust. They also spent a good deal of time dealing with Kasey Mushmouth and his tattoo. Unfortunately they let him sing again too. Just some brief thoughts of what was actually a watchable broadcast, as long as the remote was at the ready to fast-forward through the painful parts.
1) Outtakes: always good and should always have been included in the original broadcast. Ali running away from a mouse and having to be reminded she wore a space helmet on a museum date because she was so blitzed at the time she literally blacked out on her feet.
2) Chris N.:"The Phantom" lives! Holy shit! Somebody pressed the mute button, and while they were at it they also pressed the "Add Personality" button. This guy rocked on. Why didn't we see any of the Phantom stuff during the show? Oh, that's right; they were too busy highlighting all the insane douchebaggery and canned date-lines. Why bother showing funny private interviews when you can have some loser repeat the phrase "amazing" 72 times? I'd hate to actually get to know any of these guys. You suck, Fleiss.
3) Frankfurter the Forgiven: The edit was actually fair to Frank. Man, that one threw me, but I suspect I know why. Harrison kept mentioning the fact that Frank is scheduled to appear next week on ATFR and eat crow for being such a loser. That was the plan anyway. Who knows if he'll show up or not? Spoilers are everywhere and nowhere insisting that the ATFR was filmed/not filmed, and that Frank was a no-show even if it did happen. We'll see, but he came out of this smelling better than expected regardless. He even had a defender. Which leads us to...
4) Co-host, Palooka Craig: This was unexpected. Never has the focus been on such an inconsequential also-ran like it was last night. Wingman Harrison has taken a beating the past few seasons for whipping up on the no-show villains; well last night, he took the night off and they promoted formerly drunken lawyer, Palooka Craig to be his co-host. He did the wingman's dirty work for him. This guy, sounding very much like a lawyer (and sober again) de-molished the Wrassler. It was like watching a trained prosecutor going after the guy and Craig crushed him. Surprisingly, he was also allowed to put on a spirited defense of his buddy, The Frankfurter too. And I'd be shocked if he didn't change some minds out there on the subject as well. Maybe he was just a better exposition character than the wingman could manage being, but I suspect this was also Plan C or D being put into effect as well. If negotiations fall through with either (or both) of the final 2, they will need a back up plan. Craig would be a risky stretch as the next Bachelor. Although he's no worse-looking than Jason Mesnick was, he also doesn't have the single dad sob-story going for him either. Confident, articulate, and funny, he does bring some promise to the table, and since I have don't have a hormone-dog in this fight, I can say it would be wonderful to see a lawyer who actually wants to practice law and not appear on Dancing With The Stars or be a co-host for ET as the primary. Would the female audience buy it? That's another matter, and one I'm not qualified to judge. But there was can be no doubt this was a trial balloon of sorts. They start filming in October and they would need to get this guy a trainer and gym membership pronto. Of course, there might another reason that Plan D was so in focus. Maybe Plan C wasn't quite up to the role because...
5) Drunken Captain Kirk: Whoa! This guy was bombed! The de-facto f3 with the tale of heroism battling mold poisoning should have been a major part of the show. He was one of only two clods dragged into the hot seat by the wingman, but was practically mute other than that. I think it was because monosyllabic slurs to the wingman's cheesy softballs were about all he could manage with that blood alcohol level going on. Sarian Brandy or Romulan Ale or whatever it was he was pounding, somebody should have taken the bottle away from the guy. They had to edit as hard as they could to make him coherent, but I hope somebody got this guy's car keys. By all rights, this guy should be Plan C...and maybe he is.
6) Jessie Who? Sulidis: Blech! Famewhore came out to justify her inclusion on Bachelor Pad and played the part of snitch just like she did on The Women Tell All last season when she buried, and seemed to lie through her face, about Rozlyn the Ho and her producer-boyfriend. She's earned her place all right.
Ok, well, we all await the finale and any spoilers that come our way until then. Regardless of the outcome, I'll be around to Blast it.
Welcome aboard, Matey's. You're old ship captain comes to you on the road this week; a pre-scheduled trip to loot and pillage across country must be met, but even travel and piracy can't stop the Blast. It can't stop the Bachelorette either, as Normal-Guy Chris Lambton and Groucho Roberto Martinez get ready to make like corsairs and plunder some Ali-booty in Tahiti. Withering, dithering, estrogen-filled whiner, Frankfurter, the Not-So-Great should be joining them but he's too busy plundering some other booty up in Chicago. That's right, folks; the worst kept secret in the known universe--the fact that Frankfurter returns to his girlfriend Nicole--is about to be unleashed on a thoroughly spoiled viewing public. So, I'm gonna' recap what you've heard about for months--seen for weeks courtesy of Bachelorette producer/cultural tar pit, Mike Fleiss and his previews--and just watched...if you managed to stay awake for it. Me, I was fightin' it. After hearing about it and seeing previews, I was expecting Frank and Ali to just go mental. Previews had led us to believe that Ali and Frank were both going to be so riven with grief that they were going to commit suicide after he dumped her. Well if they did, suicide has never been more boring.
Time to Pull the Pin on That Frankfurter Grenade
While previews show The Normal One and The Funny One preparing for their trip to Tahiti to meet Ali, a drumbeat of Frankfurter whine can clearly be heard. Frank is shown packing his bags and taking a shortcut away from tropical paradise to detour to chilly Chicago so he can meet-up with girlfriend Nicole. Frank wanders around Chicago without a jacket as a frigid wind nearly blows him away and tells us he might still have feelings for Nicole. Frank is shown crashing her apartment with a camera crew, and Nicole play acts like she's clueless about the whole thing. Despite signing waivers, a non-disclosure contract and god-knows-what-else--Nicole tries to look surprised when Frank shows up on her doorstep. If it were really a surprise, she would have asked what the hell the cameras were doing there and just what Frank was doing wearing those dorky glasses of his. But alas, the camera crew follows him inside where they sit on the couch and Frank breaks into his now-familiar shtick about being confused, etc. Nicole, at no risk for an Emmy nomination, quotes some lines from Jerry Maguire about how Frank completes her. Oh, c'mon Nicole, how about you tell him he had you at "Get Lost" or whatever he told you when he dumped you. In Private Interviews, Frank lets us know just how bittersweet it all is. I'm sure the boards are abuzz with speculation about Frank's true intentions, but its hard not to see a set up here. Congratulations, Frank! The producers finally let you leave. Being known as the biggest douche bag in America is a small price to pay for the exposure, and those sweetheart screen writing deals they probably promised you. And you get to get rid of those Reid-disguise glasses they made you wear. Congratulations, Nicole. You get to keep a guy most viewers weren't much impressed with to begin with, and being known as Mrs. Douche Bag! shouldn't be all that bad. Have fun.
The Marx Brother on Gilligan's Island
What was with those huts? I know, I know; I was supposed to be concentrating on the two-tone water, breathless vistas, and heady romance of Ali on her dates. Sorry, I couldn't do anything but look at those damn huts they had them in and wonder if Gilligan and the Skipper were sleeping in the one next door. And the Fantasy Hut? That was where Thurston Howell III and Lovey normally sleep, isn't it? Groucho Roberto was wandering around on that porch on his floating hut and I was waiting for Mary Ann to come hopping out and offer him some coconut creme pie. Speaking of, somebody needs to kick the director right in the crotch. She (I think we can safely assume it was a She) had Roberto wander over to a rail, and then straddle it with his crotch in some 'ballcrusher' move no guy would willingly perform in a million years. Come on, sweetie, it's not your grandma's banister. What's next, Roberto gonna' climb atop a washing machine on Spin Cycle? Yeah, that looked organic. Anyway, Ali comes out to Hut City on some island named Le Tata's or something and picks Roberto up for yet another helicopter ride. I think the flying phobia is cured now. It should be since Ali has logged more time in the air than Chuck Yeager. Anyway, they take off and fly around so the Tahitian Board of Tourism can get their dimes worth before landing on some desolate and deserted little island with a (Say it all together 50 times!) a HEART-SHAPED lagoon. Really? Guess it depends on the angle you're looking at it. And who's doing the lookin' of course. Roberto and Ali quickly agree that the shape of the lagoon portends well for their future together. It looked like a giant VAGINA-SHAPED lagoon to me, so maybe it does portend well for their evening. At least his anyway. Dinner had one, and only one purpose--for the Funny One to admit to Ali he's swallowed the bait hook-line-and sinker and is falling in love with her. He hems and haws, and acts all embarrassed as he drops the cupid bomb in her lap. Right on cue, Ali whips out the dirty sexcard Harrison writes up for these episodes and basically propositions Roberto right there. "Ali and Roberto, welcome to beautiful, scenic, and very inexpensive Tahiti--a lovely place to take the entire family, even in these tough economic times. If you two are horny, we'll move the Howells in next door with the Professor for the evening and you two can have a wild sexromp. Love, Chris Harrison." Roberto waggles his caterpillar eyebrows, and then basically tells Ali "damn straight!". For some odd reason, they then make the happy couple wade over to the hut through five feet of water before heading indoors. Careful, kids, noise carries for miles on open water. Please don't wake the other castaways.
She Wore a Pearl Necklace
Normal Guy Chris meets Ali on a long dock and sweeps her around in circles. Ali tells him they are going out on a boat that is "the biggest, like most-luxurious catamaran in Tahiti." Lovely plug. They chat as they ride out and its sounds painfully forced. Ali blathers on about his family but the conversation is stilted and filled with her fake, dumb laugh. They jump into the water and he carries her in ashore to an island as the producers play Disney fantasy music for them. They stumble along the island bank where Fleiss' crew has helpfully seeded the shallows with several oysters they stuffed some pearls inside of for them to find. As darkness falls, they get ready for a dinner date where Ali tries to reassure us just how much stronger she feels for Chris now that he's given her some pearls or something. Now they wade out to an island for a two person clambake and enjoy some fruity chick-drinks. Chris continues to seed himself into the hearts of millions of viewers by talking non-stop about how much he has fallen for Al, but if she feels a damn thing for this guy, I can't see it. Nevertheless, when he gets gushy enough, out comes the sexcard. "Its from Chris Harrison," she tells him. He looks around, "Is he about to pop up in scuba gear and scare me?" Been waiting for someone to ask something like that for years. "Harrison, what the hell does he want?" But he just chuckles and reads it aloud like a good little boy. "Ali, Chris, welcome to Gilligan's Island. Go screw! Chris." or something like that. They get the Howell's hut and Chris acts like he's never heard of a Fantasy Hut..er, Suite. They sit outside and the guitars kick in as he mumbles to her, "God, I love you!" and he walks her inside and confirms she is the one and its tango-time. "My mom is smiling down on me right now." She is? Damn, Chris, you're right; you got the coolest mom in the world! Score it! Date over.
The Frankfurter Bomb Goes Off. "Pfft."
So much for that explosion. My alarm clock makes a bigger bang than that. After weeks of speculation, Frankfurter shows up and is assigned a Castaway hut to await Ali and dump her rump. But first, however, he has to inform the clueless wingman about his intentions. "I need to see Chris Harrison." Yeah, clue him in, Frank. Chris has been busy all week writing porno cards and he missed out on the fact that you and the camera crew were in Chicago,or that him and his bosses had been holding you captive for weeks. Go easy though, you might shock him with this news. Frank sits down with Harrison and spills the beans. "I'm, I'm blown away!" Harrison smarms. (Oh, man, and they expect us to ever believe them.) He drops some guilt trips on Frank like he's his mother while Frank hems and haws and does whatever he can to keep from being hunted down by bitter women on the streets of Chicago and shot. All the excuse-making in the world won't save the guy now; he's toast. Harrison directs him to tell Ali about his scurrilous perfidy and finally leaves. Frank awaits Ali outside the Professors hut and she finally shows and he dumps her over 15 Looooooooonnnnggggg minutes. Was Ali upset? Yes. Was she angry? Yes. But the previews had made it seem like Ali was going to rip her extensions out, tear her fake-eyelashes off and try and drown herself under Ginger and Mary Ann's hut. She didn't. She was clearly feeling betrayed and Frank did his best to get upset and cry like a wussy, but this was downright calm compared to what I expected. It was all lies anyway. Frank wanted to leave the show weeks back, but they wouldn't let him go. It was all fake. The lameness factor made it almost unwatchable. "I...I gave up everything to be here!" "I gave up everything to be here too!" Really? You moved out of your parent's basement? Of course you did, Frank. Nicole has her own pad, doesn't she? Nice move, Frank. I hope it has titanium doors. Ali wanders down the sand where the wingman slithers back into the picture. "I'm sorry." Ali deservedly pounds him while we get sad music and yet more Frankfurter boo-hoo. ZZZZZ. Harrison helps out, "Why don't you head back to your room, relax; do a few Private Interviews and cry a lot."
One Day Later, and Joan of Arc Soldiers On
The wingman schedules another sit-down as Ali tries to rally. They sit and she rags Frank and the winger talks her into having a rose ceremony and she gets a chance to voice doubt about how much she doubts everything now. They stage a meaningless rose ceremony and the two remaining guys get their flowers--Chris looks enamored with her and Roberto sweats like a hog. She informs them Frank is definitely not the guy for her...now that's he run back to Nicole, and she needs them to accept her rose. They do. (Cue guitars).
Next week: The Men Tell All, less Justin Wrassler, and Frank, and Roberto, and Chris. That means one hour of Kasey Musmouth guarding and protecting Chris Harrison's heart and Craig Walken-drunk beating up on the Weather Elf. Oh joy.
His Future Taking Shape, The Frankfurter Prepares to Exit, Stage Left!
Hometown time, or on this season of the Bachelorette it can be called "the quiet before the storm". Hometown's usually involve at least one weirded-out family, disapproving family member, or someone who hates the Bachelor(ette) on sight; not this time, my friends. The waters couldn't have looked more smooth--or tepid. Ali travels cross-country to meet the families of her four remaining suitors and gets the chance to show off an incessant, fake-giggle that had me covering my ears halfway through. If she has much going on with any of these guys--save one--I damn sure can't see it. I have never seen a primary for this show look more concerned about being 'on camera' in my life. Every move, gesture, laugh, and grimace seems contrived and the time with these guys so bereft of genuine emotion I had to stifle yawns or grimaces of my own as she giggled and seemed to force herself to lock lips with them. Compounding the agony, the guys themselves--with one exception--couldn't have looked any better either. Three of the four seem genuine, nice-looking, and appear into her. Shame she doesn't seem to able to say the same. There might be a hidden jewel at the end of this 'journey', but I'm sure not seeing it. It looks like the one guy she sized up to do her ironing decided he'd rather serve in heaven than live in hell.
Tampa, Fla.: We begin this week's escapades in the deep south where notorious Latin Hotbod, Groucho Roberto awaits her outside his old college. You'd think an old barnacle bottom like me would have a ball with this guy: a 26 year-old insurance salesman with caterpillar brows? But I'm hard pressed to find a chink in his armor. Good-looking, suave, intelligent and pleasant and damn it all, a pretty cool family too. What's a snarker supposed to do? Focus on his failed baseball career, of course. Well that's what the producers do anyway. They make him take her out to the old ballpark he used to roam and throw her some batting practice. Tampa provides some old ball uniforms and the field and Roberto provides the cannon ammo. He tosses her a few softies and the edit makes it look like the good old days as she lashes the girlie-version of some frozen ropes off of him. Ali giggles and Roberto cringes with combat flashbacks as one after another of his pitches scream out into the gaps like laser bolts. Nahh, I'm being an asshole. He practically underhanded them up there and she squealed with shock every time she managed to make contact--which gives us a good idea just how many she missed. Silly baseball workout over, he sits her down and hands her one of his baseball cards. She acts like he just handed her a Honus Wagner card, and holds it to her heart wondering how much a Roberto Martinez original is going for on Ebay. (Value? .10) Anyway, now that the producer's are done embarrassing him, its time to meet the family--and I got the feeling Ali would rather have stayed at the ballpark.
Roberto's family comes as no surprise; a strong, traditional family with traditional values. Ali is met by Pops Martinez Sr., his hot-milf wife, Roberto's beefcake brother and his hottie wife, and Roberto's hottie sister. They sit down to a meal and Roberto's brother wants to know why Roberto was given the First Impression Rose. Ali insists it was because of a "feeling", which sounds more appropriate than admitting that Roberto gave her fire-crotch. Dinner finished, Pops Martinez move in quick. After a quick tour of Roberto's baseball trophies, he pins Ali with some direct questions. He asks Ali about her personal goals and she answers honestly about her career drive. Pops, being a 30 year-veteran of the marriage game, lauds his boy and tries to make a judgment between Ali's career goals and Roberto's. "He has big goals. His job might take him different places. If you had to sacrifice some of your personal goals for him, for his career...how do you feel about that?" Ali stammers like a tobacco executive in front of a congressional committee. "I want to make Roberto happy and I can't do that if I'm not happy, so I need something to fulfill me too." She goes on like a politician but at least she's honest, if circuitous in her answer. From the accent, it sounds like English is not Pops' first language but he seems to have no trouble deciphering that answer. He raises an eyebrow at her and heard the translation of all of that blithering as clearly as I did: "I'll be sacrificing my career goals for any man on the 5th of NEVER!" It's a fair question and a fair answer--its also about as compatible as Pauly Shore and Angelina Jolie. Rumors are circulating that this might be the guy. I sure as hell hope not. I'd rather no engagement than a short, miserable one. Roberto and Pops have a sit down and Pops gives his hesitant blessing. The man is no fool. This hasn't got a chance in hell. Pops and his milf-wife do some sexy dancing but...date-might-as-well-be-over. Ali shown to opine: "This is real...and I'm almost getting cold feet." Ya think?
Normal Guy Chris
Cape Cod, Mass.: It's time for one of the more-real and emotional dates this show has ever seen. Normal-Guy Chris, looking more decent and normal than ever, meets Ali on a wind and rain swept beach with his dog. She storms up in knee high boots and they stroll the sands where he grew up. He takes her back home where they camp out on the porch and he talks about his mom. A photo tour of his family is emotional and soon Pops Lambton comes in and radiates decency all over the place. Before Pops can hog all the great karma, in marches Chris' younger brothers with their wife and fiance. Choking on the close-knit family she's never gonna' be a part of, Ali whips out the booze. While she pours a glass of liquid courage, Chris' sister-in-law Meagan notices Ali is wearing a Dennis Bracelet that carries the family slogan, "Love is the only reality." Damn, did Fleiss find this family at central casting or what? Ali giggles nervously and wriggles hers around on her arm. The Lambton's all run a family landscaping business and all live close by so they sit down for a meal all together as they probably often do, and Chris' brother wants to know what makes his brother different from the other guys. Ali starts tap dancing as hard as she can. "Massachusetts connection--he's funny, and goofy--and very family oriented!" The sis-in-laws get sour expressions at once. That was about as lame as it can get. What, is he the only guy left in New England? Ali blathers on about Family, but we've never seen or heard a damn thing to make us believe this is important to her in the least. Are the producers counting on the audience to suffer collective amnesia? Ali bolted her own broken home at sixteen, moved a continent away from her mom, and is a 100 MPH career girl. Much to her credit, she's gone far in such a short time on her own, but what about that resume and her ambitions makes us think she gives a damn about family? Fleiss can call her the 'perfect bachelorette' until his head falls off, but her priorities and ambitions seem diametrically opposed from the what this show is supposed to be about: relationships, love, and family. Seeing her there sitting with the Lambtons, she looks like the ultimate fish out of water. Pops mentions that Ali is reputed to have left a job to return home and nurse her granny, just like Chris did with his mom. Ali is stunned. "I never thought of that!" Huh? You never thought of it? Is this girl weird or a liar? Pops opines to her with wisdom, "Life can be short. If you have love, its all that matters. My only goal before I leave this earth to see all my boys happy, and married." Ali looks like she's gonna drop a deuce. The sis-in-laws grill Chris and he acts over the moon for her, but Ali and the Sis's are never shown talking and if anybody ever asked if she would consider moving to Cape Cod, we never heard it.. Sis-in-law Meagan tells us Chris suffered the most, because he never had anyone to share his grief with. Chris takes Ali up on some model of a castle turret and they kiss. Chris assures the home audience that his mother is here and blessing this. He talks with dad and says, "I don't want her to pick me, just fall for me!" I can hear women across North America already gnashing their teeth. Mercifully, date over.
Green Bay, WI.: The third of the dates lead us into the Midwest so Ali can meet the family of Captain Kirk, brave survivor of the mold monster attack. Since none of the families are wacko enough for the producer's tastes, they goad Kirk's dad into taking Ali into his basement right away so he can show her his taxidermy work. Hunting and taxidermy are about as rare in Green Bay as cheese is, but since a majority of this shows viewers live on the metropolitan coasts, this is a chance to make Kirk's family look like backwoods hicks. Dad shows her his stuffed menagerie and even opens his freezer to show her his supply of frozen gopher balls or whatever he keeps in there. I'm relieved Fleiss doesn't try to punish them beyond that. Dad sits her down looking about five years older than his son and pimps for his boy pretty good and comes away as normal, not Dr. Frankenstein, the Animal Murderer. We find out Kirk's mom and dad are divorced and not on speaking terms. This concerns little Ms. Suzy Homemaker an awful lot because, as we know already, family is everything to her. (Rolls eyes). Anyway, Dad, step mom, and Kirk's adopted sister don't make out too badly considering Ali looks to have the same interest in Kirk as I have in toenail fungus. The action shifts to Kirk's mom's where they are joined by Kirk's sister and Granny. Despite the split households, Ali notices a lot of love anyway...just not with her and Kirk. Mom, looking about fifty years older than her son, gets a chance to tell the story of Kirk's brave battle in her own words. The story does pack an emotional punch and when they finish, Ali hugs her and shoots her a pout-face as if to say, "Sorry." Kirk tells us this is the first time he has put himself out there for a woman and mom gives him the default "whatever makes you happy, makes me happy" response that is standard on these dates. Kirk puts her into the SUV with that look of blindsided innocence Fleiss must love and waves like a dork as she pulls away.
Frankfurter Orders Up a Bus to lay Down Under
Chicago, IL.: (I've said all along that I don't do spoilers, but if you watched last week's previews, you know what's going to happen in Tahiti. Since Fleiss is cool spoiling himself, it seems dumb for me to keep quiet about it.) Ali meets her main man, Frankfurter, on the edge of some windy city water and they go for a boat ride and Ali explains why this is her guy almost at once, "Frank is at that point in his life where he can pick up and go anywhere and do anything, just like me." True, she can go on Dancing with the Stars and he can move out of his parent's basement, work on screenplays and fix her dinner. Say what you will, but this is the guy she is actually compatible with. Unfortunately for her, he'd rather stay in the basement than make her Mac & Cheese. More on that to come next week. For now, we get to see a ton of foreshadowing from Frank about just how close he is to escaping Ali. "I'm...I'm up and down. This is a mind game." He yammers all over the place and is so plainly lying I'm stunned she can't see it. She frowns but keeps on trying, "One thing I haven't thought about is...I could be meeting my future in-laws today." Frank tries to hide the grimace with a smile for about three seconds before he says, "True; isn't that crazy? Maybe we'll meet them on the way to my parent's house; weirder things have happened." or something like that. She blames this all on nerves and says she needs Frank to "step up!" They arrive at Frank's sponge-pad to meet his mom and dad, his sister and her husband. Big hugs all around as Frank grabs dad in a bear hug, "Frank! It's great see you--what's with the dorky glasses, son? Did your eyes go bad?" They must have edited that out. Anyway, the family all cracks jokes on what a welfare case Frank is and we get to see where he gets his humor from. Mom, sporting a three pack-a-day voice, hauls Ali outside where she is much more demonstrative about Frank than any other guy. Ali grimaces at the thought of snow full time but adds, "I'd do anything for the right person!" Oh? Don't tell Roberto's dad that one. Ali and mom gush all over each other and I hope the family wasn't in on this. Frank sits inside and assures his sister and brother-in-law that "I know exactly what I want...but, is this it? Do I have forever here?" Of course you do, Frank. That is you do if you consider 'forever' to be two more hours before you go back over to your ex-girlfriends house and get back together with her, you do. Don't sweat it. Sis then takes Ali outside and seems concerned about the pace things are moving. Dad then talks with Frank and Frank just chucks caution aside and buries himself, "Ali could very well be the girl I propose to a few weeks from now." Or not. Ali places the last piece into the puzzle-edit, "I think there is a great chance that Frank and I will end up together at the end of this," as she drives away and Frank gets ready to go see his ex-girlfriend. Way to go, Hero. Date, Ali, and this season: over.
Harrison sits Ali down so they can recap the week. Her descriptions of each guy may be illuminating: Roberto: "Not the type of guy I thought I wanted... Chris: "Biggest surprise...skeptical of the relationship..biggest steps forward, but is it too late?" Kirk: "Is that the guy that I need?" hehe. Frank: "I was soooo excited to see Frank. His family is AMAZING!" The wench queen, who is unspoiled (even by previews) can't stand it another second. "Just what the hell is so amazing about Frank? He's a wimpy weirdo who lives in his parent's basement!" I feign innocence and shrug. That earns me a narrow-eyed glare, "What's about to happen!?" "Nothing honey...oh, you're not allowed to read my blog this week either." Wingman: "I've asked you this before, do you see your husband here?" Ali: (Speaks a lot, says nothing.) Wingman: "Are you ready to send someone home tonight?" (furtively sprays onion fumes into her face.) Ali: "Boo hoo, no!" Winger: "Sorry, I didn't mean to make you cry." Ali: "Then get off my foot!"
Roses and Some Awful Acting
Harrison lines them up and Ali comes in hamming it up so badly I start laughing. "I...I don't want to do this! But I'm going to anyway and when I dump one of you and throw you out, I'll be back to get drunk and talk about Tahiti."
1) Groucho Roberto
3) Frankfurter. "Frank will you accept this rose? "Yes, because they are making me. Don't worry, I'll give it to Nicole."
Frank looked the whole time like he wanted to commit suicide. If he'll wait till next week, he'll have three or four million volunteers to help him.
Cut:Captain Kirk. Good news, he erases the memory of the macrame scrapbook forever by looking at Ali like she was something he stepped in. Keeps it classy in the limo but is clearly pissed, as he should be. Argh!
Next week: The Frankfurter Bomb Strikes in Tahiti. See ya then!
Man, I better type this quick. I sure wouldn't want to miss a single second of that riveting interview with Jake and Vienna. Everything has obviously gone so well during Ali's season that a full half of a trip to Portugal and the dates that went with it can be carelessly discarded into the nearest bin so we can watch two people few cared about or ever believed would make it six months slam each other like the show had been renamed "Trailer Trash!" Hear me, oh Fleiss: you better start putting some love back into your dating show or you have nothing more on your hands than Rock of Love, and (Hint) it got canceled. I can't imagine 5 people in the U.S. could have watched that interview and not felt the need to take a shower afterward, and one of them was Jerry Springer. Where's your fairytale love, Fleissmonster? But for now, let's focus on the speed dating an extremely disengaged (and suddenly) FATAli had in Lisbon, Portugal and every damn castle Fleiss could find short of a Portuguese Medieval Times. The wingman makes his opening pitch on the around the world tour and greets the five remaining guys in Portugal. There will be four lightning-fast dates tonight--three, 1-on-1's, one 2-on-1, and no roses for anyone.
Grouch Roberto Keeps it Shallow
The 1st one-on-one date is for Groucho Roberto, a guy who has looked good, sounded great, and I can't tell you two things about him except he used to get shelled as a minor league pitcher and he needs to work on his Olive Oil Wrestling moves. The date won't help us much either. Ali takes him around Lisbon and we find out the third thing about him: he's a lousy photographer. Picture taking, cable care rides and a visit to the first of several scenic castles, what we actually learn is that the wardrobe people didn't plan on Ali's weight gain. They dress her all night in short skirts and tight jeans and so she can show off her new and mightily expanded caboose. Now before my largely female readership climbs my cage for mentioning the fact that Ali's legs look like Ballpark Franks, I will say that this isn't the first time this has happened. Dee put on weight during her season as well. It's pretty unfair to make these gals go to a gym and work with a trainer for three months before the show starts, and then put them on an 18-hour per day all-alcohol diet for a month. Jillian is the only one of the three Bachelorettes I've seen who didn't plump up, and she obviously has the metabolism of a door mouse. Regardless, what else we learn about Ali is that her cooking skills extend to opening a pizza box. Since gender roles play a part on the show tonight, it's only fair to mention it. She hands Roberto a piece of cheese and comments that basically, she can't make toast and he had better enjoy what she just handed him because it's the only food she'll ever be able to provide. This is Ali's not-so-subtle-way of letting Roberto know that unless he fancies starving to death, he better be a whiz with a microwave or make enough cash to take her out every night. I'm certain the almost-solely female audience couldn't care, but being a man, I have different eyes. Hey, modern woman stuff is ok by me, but would I want a woman like that in a long-term relationship? One that can't be bothered to press the button on a microwave? No. I'm from an older generation, but not a man alive doesn't enjoy a home cooked meal on occasion, even if he has to share the duties. I don't mind doing half the cooking, but since I always take notice of what a guy can bring to the relationship table it only seems fair to focus on the Bachelorette too. So, what does Ali have to offer a guy? Well, from interviews and what I've seen on the show, this seems to be what she wants: kids in 4 or 5 years--no hurry; she wants to work 14-hour days to build a career; then eat out or be served since she can't make jello; then collapse into bed. Ali seems bright and she is good-looking, but I'm hard pressed to feel like I'd be raising my hand to try a long term relationship with her. My opinion, of course. Anyway, her and Roberto talk just a little and make-out a whole lot. What did we learn? Ali, the liberal San Francisco career-girl, can't cook and has no interest in learning. Enlightening. And that's fine. But it would appear that several of her final 5 are family homeboys.
2-On-1 Freezefest and Frankfurter in the Mancave
The 2-on-1 date card arrives and we see Tennessee Ty and Frankfurter, the Human Cartoon will be paired up. This gives Frank the opportunity to whine and bitch a little more that he doesn't get every 1-on-1 date all to himself. Ty grumbles a bit too and this leads us to one of the two most boring dates I have ever seen on this show. Neither Frank nor Ty wants to be on the date, and Ali doesn't appear like she wants to be on ANY dates this week, so the excitement and passion is just blinding. They helicopter to another castle and land in an field about a quarter mile away so Ali can burn a few calories trying to trundle up the slopes with the boys. Once seated, they all stare at one another in supreme discomfort. Ali finally pulls Ty aside so she can grill him about being raised to believe in conservative gender roles and about his failed marriage. Ty says all the right things, but since Ali seems to have no intention of cleaning, cooking, or parenting, this one is easy to see coming a mile away. But since the female audience probably translated Ty's more conservative beliefs from last week to mean: "Barefoot, pregnant, and chained to my stove," I'm sure they could care less. Now it's Frankfurter's turn and he finally fesses up that he is an underemployed retail manager who inhabits his parent's basement. In a private interview, Ali snobbishly implies that she could hold that against him, if she felt like it, but she won't. Hey, maybe Frank's mom can cook for both of them. He then asks her to live in a tree with him, which if you think about it, may be preferable to his parents basement. Date over.
Captain Kirk's Bummer of a Time
The sponsor for this date must have been Prozac. Poor Captain Kirk takes Ali to a bar and she is ignoring him so much, Fleiss sends in a carriage to whisk them away to a castle before she falls asleep at the table. He walks her up to the castle turret so she can ignore the scenic view and act like she'd rather be back at the hotel. They sup on the castle roof and Kirk hits her with enough earnest cheese about his dangerous illness to at least get her to smile. They kiss a little but Ali looks like she needs her meds. Fleiss then provides a third-rate mariachi band of sorts to try and add some romance to the evening, but even that falls flat as they seemed to have hired some old sea-hag to sing for them. Good god, Fleiss; was every decent-looking mariachi singer in Portugal booked up? The poor woman looked about 80 and toothless, and her string section looked nearly lifelike as well. This exceptional bummer of a date, over.
Normal Guy Chris Makes His Move
This is the date I think a lot of people have been waiting for. Sooner or later, we were going to need to be shown some reason Normal Guy Chris kept getting roses. But as the date starts, doubts abound from Ali. She lets us know she digs him as a friend but not much else and says that her relationship with him is behind all the others. The producers order up a moped and Fleiss orders her to surrender the driving to a guy who acts like he can't ride a bike. They helmet up and putter away through the Portuguese countryside, but Chris drives so unsteadily and slowly I could have passed him on my lawnmower. Are we supposed to believe this? I could drive a mini-bike better than that when I was 13. But the pitiful performance does give Chris the chance to crack some jokes on himself, for Ali to make an analogy between his slow, timid driving, and the pace of their relationship, and gives her the chance to take over driving without looking like a control freak. She speeds them off to their destination, a winery. Over dinner, things finally heat up; Chris opens up about his mom and family and tells her that mom was so wonderful that the neighbors still stop by with food dishes to make sure him and his dad get something to eat. Wonder if they would mind feeding one more? Anyway, Chris wins even more fans by taking out a bracelet one of his neighbors made for him and giving it to Ali. She praises him for the gift and for waiting to see if they liked each other before he gave it to her. I'm certain many an audience member swooned as Ali talked about the giant leap forward this meant to the them as a couple, but visualizing Ali working as a receptionist for the family landscaping business, whipping up meals for Chris and his dad, or Chris abandoning his family to work in San Francisco as a garbage man so she can go career-building? Seriously? This ends the miserable dates for this week.
Instant Rose Ceremony
No need for cocktail parties, wingman talks or any other nonsense; we need to get to the sleazy interview, so hurry up! Roses:
1) Normal Guy Chris, San Francisco Garbage Man: Hold the swooning, ladies
2) Frankfurter, the Mancave-Dwelling Cartoon. How many women can you fit in your mom's basement?
3) Groucho Roberto, Microwave King: his unknown life, dreams, desires, and ambitions.
Wingman: "Ali, gentlemen, this is the last rose of the evening. Ali, will you hurry up; its time for the interview!"
4) Captain Kirk, brave victor over the mold monster. Other than that, haven't a clue who this guy is either.
Cut: Tennessee Ty and his backwoods gender-role ideas. What an odd place for those views too: a show about fairytale romance last seen during the reign of Queen Victoria. Go fix yourself a sandwich, Ty and settle in, its time for the interview.
Your Springer Moment: Sausage Versus Cheese; He Said, She Said.
An you thought the break-up of DeAnna Pappas and Jesse, the stoned snowboarder was an overexposed exercise in sleaziness. The producers cut an entire hour from the broadcast so the wingman could do an interview with these two assclowns. As much as I slam the wingman, he is very good at this type of stuff, but it hardly mattered. We learned nothing that hasn't been in the tabloids for a week, and nothing we didn't already know about these two before then. Jake Pavelka is a fake, disingenuous famewhore without an honest bone in his body and Vienna Girardi is an immature, high-maintenance, low-class brat. But even to my man-eyes, Pavelka came off the worse. The first segment of the interview consisted of her slamming him with all-too-believable accusations of being a publicity hound and a rather cold customer. His accusations of her cheating on him fell flat, either proving she is innocent or a much better liar. She was exposed for selling their intimate details to the tabloids for a chunk of change, but she came off much better than him. His lies were so bad, I have trouble believing many people bought them. During the second segment she got to show why living with her would be worse than slamming your head into a grain elevator door however: she whined, drama-queened and interrupted him so much, he finally snapped. Dumb move Pavelka. The second he did it, Vienna collapsed into tears and stormed away screeching about what a terror he is. My wife and sister-in-law both looked at me and said: "He's abused her!" Pavelka, you idiot. I doubt seriously he ever 'abused' her but to lose your temper with a crying woman in front of an all-female audience? Moron. The good news is I think you can quit worrying about wearing that "too perfect" moniker anymore. And what's with this: "You undermined me!" bullshit? You sound like the dictator of a banana republic. Conclusion: Losers, both of them...but especially him.
Conclusion for the Week: One disinterested, morose Bachelorette and 5 guys who are supremely ill-suited for her in every imaginable way all topped off by the some sleazy lowlifes. Yum! Where do I sign up to get onto this show?