|Meet Bilbo Douche-Baggins|
I suppose it was inevitable. Mike Fleiss and his seedy gang know that bad boys sell. Just when I thought we were free of the flea known as Big Head Bentley, he just hangs around and rains on the parade. There's going to be no avoiding this guy. Speaking of rain, I have two words for whatever booking agent Fleiss hired to plan this year's trips: Monsoon Season. Look it up; read it; memorize it. Anyway, with this season probably already busted, no matter how much Bentley-drama is tossed our way, we should at least get a nice a view of Asia. Well we would if it were not Monsoon Season! It rains less in Seattle, Fleiss. What's next, summer frolics in the Persian Gulf? Long cuddly January evenings in Antarctica? Buy an atlas, you idiot.
The Wingman Gets a Wild Hair!
Yes, yes. Chris Wingman Harrison comes stumbling into the mansion, levels the hangover gang with a steely glare and announces:
"Ashley and I don't think we can have a clean start here, so pack your bags--we're leaving the mansion for good! Our first stop is Phuket, Thailand!"
The boys jump for joy because they also have no idea its Monsoon Season! in Thailand. That wild and crazy Harrison, a forest full of wild hairs sticking out his ass, running around and planning overseas adventures alone with Ashely. You crazy kids. I'll bet you had the producers in a wild scramble trying to book a flight. Say what you will about Harrison, but this guys middle name should be spontaneous. I'm starting to think they only do bits like this in the off chance some person in a coma might suddenly awake bursting out laughing at the stupidity of it. Anyway, the boys whoop and holler and quickly board a charter.
Ashley is already waiting for them, lounging back in a Thai junk as it floats over emerald green water, her bikini top in full display as she catches a few rays of Monsoon! That looked natural. Rain spatters her as the helicopter swings around and some stagehand screams over a bullhorn for her to hold the pose despite the driving downpour. Hey, nobody said paying off those Dental School loans was gonna be easy, dear. As the boys all whoop it up off the airplane and check into a beachside bungalow, Ashley visits this week's product-placement gimme, a place called The Renaissance--a spa and resort in Phuket. Ashley makes like a local and dresses like a Thai prostitute and has a sit-down with some hapless Asian woman at the front desk of the The Renaissance. The poor woman--whose desk plate insisted she was "The Navigator"--sounded like she spoke all of three words of English. No matter, Ashley was supposed to be planning her dates in Thailand. You know the dates I mean, the ones that have been planned for months. To keep up the fiction, Ashley sits down and asks what there is to do in Thailand. The Navigator gets her lines cut. Good thing too. "Nothing during Monsoon Season, stupid American bitch! What? You want malaria? Go put some clothes on! We don't let hooker-girl work here!" Satisfied she has some amazing dates planned, Ashley departs in another downpour.
Constantine Speaks at Last...Then Won't Shut Up.
Back at the crashpad, the first date card has arrived and J.P., the Skinhead hops up and reads off the name of Constantine Hercules. The formerly silent one gets his chance to speak. Seeing the weather rolling in, he doesn't even bother to dress up. Wearing orange baggies and a tank top, an umbrella toting Constantine wanders outside to meet an umbrella-carrying Ashley. Ashley tells him they are supposed to go kayaking or something that's never gonna happen. To try and con the audience that Monsoon Season just showed up unexpectedly at the last second, Fleiss sends some tiny Thai dude to come running up to tell them that the monsoon will unexpectedly cancel the date Ashley worked so hard to plan. The poor old joker doesn't speak a work of English and after messing with subtitles a minute, he resorts to gestures that say: Boat go BOOM, stupid Americans! Back at the pad, Blake, the smarmy dentist gets a moment to bitterly wish Constantine the worst. "I hope it rains," which is about as big a stretch as going to Death Valley and damning a competitor with a curse of sunshine. It also gives J.P., the Skinhead, who's been shaping up as a fan favorite, a chance to start looking obsessive and a little creepy over Ashley.
Faced with absolutely nothing to do, Fleiss plucks a page from the tried and worn playbook and orders the twosome to wander around Phuket pestering the locals for dating advice. Its a page out of last year's script where Brad Womack took hottie undertaker Shawntel Munster for a few laps around Anguilla when they had nothing to do. But instead of pestering fat Rastafarian women, they pester another old Thai dude about love. The old man starts yammering away about his 37 years of marriage when Constantine acts like Aladdin and wishes for a translator. Poof! A young Thai woman appears at his elbow and starts translating. The old joker makes like Mr. Miyagi to Ashley's Daniel-san and starts dispensing love advice. "Forgive easily; don't try to win." Sage advice. Sage advice no American under the age of forty will ever follow either. Its all about "Winning!" even when you're losing. Just ask Charlie Sheen. Fresh out of locals to pester, Constantine and Ashley...run down the street? As darkness falls, Fleiss finds them a dry canopy to huddle under and to show just how desperate they are to film Ashley doing anything besides comparing the remaining men to Big Head Bentley, the producers resort to having them hold a normal conversation. Constantine, after being muzzled the last 2 weeks, yammers on pretty good. He comes across as a normal guy. Him and Ashley? Eh. Ashley still looks crushed and pines away about Bilbo Douche-Baggins at every opportunity. Constantine gets the rose for being a good sport anyway. No kissing is shown and they finally wander off into the rain. Boring.
Some Bachelor "Charity"
While Constantine and Ashley have been enjoying the rain, the Group Date card has arrived. Ben Chipmunk, J.P., the Skinhead, Blake, the smarmy dentist, Mickey Finn, The Wild West, Vino Ben, Nick and His Horrid Hair Highlights, Lucas the Enigma, William the Wise, and Sunny Ryan have their names called to go do some charity work around Thailand. This leaves the Ivy League finance 'droid, Eraser Head Ames, holding the last chance for some one-on-one malaria. The boys all speed off to a nearby orphanage where Ashley awaits them in the rain. She bangs on about the tsunami a few years back and all the orphans it created. And since these kids haven't suffered enough, they are to be the object of some Bachelor Charity. The charity takes the form of a host of well educated men who nothing about manual labor painting their orphanage a wide array of hideous colors. The actual point of the exercise isn't really to punish orphans, its just an excuse to introduce the next theme of the season now that Bentley is back in Utah (for the moment) receiving death threats: its to let us all know that Sunny Ryan is a constant irritant to the other men. Ashley wanders around looking broken-hearted while all the men lambast Ryan as a bossy, relentlessly upbeat dork. The boys all paint the room under Ryan's expert tutelege. In a side room, Vino Ben has decided to add a mural to the wall he's painting and Ashley joins him. Ben has decided to paint something that looks a little like an elephant. No, more like a hybrid: an elephant-pottamus. "I can't paint," Ben needlessly informs us as Ashley joins him and paints a pretty flower just to let us know that she wears the painting pants in this relationship. This was an act of charity? I can just imagine the nightmares the Thai kids will have over that mural. They finally bring out some bikes and the producers release the kids they have kept caged up out back so J.P., the Skinhead can gush about what a life changing experience this has been. (How about a few iPads for them, Fleiss? You tightass.) As darkness mercifully falls and the Thai orphans snuggle into their new bunk beds keeping one eye on the elephant-pottamus that's about to leap off their wall and attack them, Ashley takes the guys back to the Renaissance to sit around the pool and let them whine about what a dick Ryan is, and she can whine about how much she misses You-Know-Who. William the Wise, henceforth mercifully silent after last weeks suicidal idiocy at the Roast, predicts Ryan is definitely "top 4." There's no hiding a genius. Vino Ben gets a few seconds alone with the gal and nets a kiss, while J.P., the Skinhead worries Ashley since he's been "stand-offish" all day. She needn't have worried. J.P. likes her...maybe too much. They gush about orphans and she marvels at his shaved head and they make out. "J.P. is the best kisser here!" (Oh god. Lets hope she picked him then. If not, some other guy just threw his beer at his television screen and screamed "whore!") Ashley meets with Sunny Ryan and you begin to feel that if Bentley did nothing, he may have sharpened up her radar. She quizzes him about how well he gets along with the others and he insists "Fine!" Blake, the smarmy dentist, begs to differ. With some producer-prompting, Blake confronts Ryan and tells him he is either a phony or one of those relentlessly golly-gee types who drives everyone nuts. Ryan just keeps repeating, "Really? Really?" Just to impress upon our minds what a dick Ryan is, when Ashley emerges from her rounds and fingers the flower, Ryan butts in and hauls her away for a last second ass kissing that was needless, desperate, and obviously producer-prompted. Like it mattered. She returns and roses Vino Ben for being a normal person. Date over.
Eraser Head Ames' Love Sonnet to Himself
While Ashely was moping in the rain with the other turds, highly educated finance bot, Eraser Head Ames, has been told by the suddenly talkative Constantine Hercules that he needs to charge his batteries and buff his porcelain veneers cause he and Ashley are going to venture out into the rain together. She awaits him with the usual umbrella in hand and they go out onto a skiff where the producers make them stand on the bow and get a face full of monsoon. Once they take a dinghy into some hidden coves, we add a little more knowledge to our Ames file. We've already heard that he has 5 graduate-level college degrees and runs marathons. To that we add that he has visited 70 countries and has one facial expression: a grin. As they dine back at the Renaissance, we also learn this is his second trip to Phuket and he also slacks around at work. "I found a class at work on the internet and decided, why wait? So I came here the next day to take a cooking class." Now how gay is that? Self absorbed there much, Ames? Ashley, who gives every impression she intended to dump him before the date started, starts to sound and look impressed. Slow down, Ash, and try and think like you're thirty-five instead of twenty-five. Older people could hear this scenario going off in their heads:
"Honey, did you pick up the milk on your way home? You're late."
"Uh, well, you remember that dinner party on Saturday? Well, we're supposed to be having smoked mackrel."
"I was just wasting my employers time at work and saw there was a great class on Finnish cooking..."
"Where are you!?"
Ames, his face stuck on grin, manages to show off his big vocab and cheesy poetic sayings, and before you know it, she ups and hands over the flower. Once again, no kissing. And its a good thing too. If Ames' forehead and Ashley's forehead ever got together in a meaningful way, the poor child would have a Tenhead. Date over.
Monsoon Cocktail Bore
Ashley comes into the party whining about Bentley one more time and then sits down with some of the lesser lights so they can get their two minutes and thirty-seconds worth of fame. First up is erstwhile attorney, The Wild West, he of the dead wife. Ashley quizzes him about being ready to move forward and despite saying all the right things, one assumes his end is about nigh. Next comes fellow shyster, Lucas, the Enigma. They talk about his divorce and he hits her with what no woman wants to hear: he got divorced because he fell out of love. (You mean like you will with me?) Trying to cover, he lies, "I've never quit on anything in my life!" Yeah, except your first marriage. Next! But all of this is just chaff for the other big theme of the show, namely that Sunny Ryan is a phony dickhead. Blake blasts him some more and when he sits down with Ashley and for a P. I. the guy is clearly pissed. Busy to prove Blake and the others are right, Ryan phony smiles through his anger and sarcastically defends being happy. "Well excuse my crime," he seethes with a fake grin. "There are men being mortared in Afghanistan. What do I have to be unhappy about?" Fair point; just being such a wad how you show it, dude. Just to show Blake, the producers, and me that he won't be stopped, Ryan fake-smiles, closes his eyes, scrunches up his face, and expels a fart the exact shape and color of Snow White. Magical.
Finally...and I do mean finally, the wingman enters tinging his champagne glass calling the crashing bore off.
Producer Ass Covering
Harrison hauls Ashley aside for a sit down and prompts her to whine about Bentley a little more. Ashley quickly verifies that she had, two weeks in, already picked Bentley and was ready to be done with the rest of these guys instantly. More good news for whoever she picked. Claiming her mood is better and she now sees the men in a whole new Bentley-less light, she asks to add a rose to the ceremony.
"There are no rules," Harrison keeps cawing like the producer-parrot he is. "Like us showing you what a wad Bentley is," is left unsaid.
Harrison lines them up, produces and extra rose from the rose vault, and here we go.
Safe: Eraser Head Ames, Vino Ben, and Constantine Hercules.
1) Lucas the Enigma--Yee Haw! (No, I didn't make that up.)
2) Sunny Ryan--Maybe he's gonna' teach her how to fart in cartoon? If he does, you know it will look like Bentley.
3) J.P., the Skinhead--lets back off on the creepy meter, fella.
4) Nick--Emergency trip to the hairdresser is needed! Horrible Hair Highlights fading.
5) Mickey Finn--zzzzzzzzz.
6) Blake, the Smarmy Dentist--rewarded for being this week's producer-stooge.
7) William the Wise--mercifully almost mute
8) Ben Chipmunk--we actually needed an extra rose?
Dumped: The Wild West--time to head East.
Next Week: More Thai monsoons! God, this one was a snoozefest. Evidently Harrison is all over twitter trying to convince people that Bilbo Douche-Baggins will be back next week. I can hardly wait. See ya then.