On this week's episode of the Bachelorette, the crew went to a town called Dubrichoiolytickaloahik in Croatia. While I knew from reading books on vampires that Croatia is actually pretty beautiful, I bet the Bachelor team really threw an eye-opening curveball to most of America by showing them that Croatia isn't a coal-dust-covered nuclear holocaust war zone.
That's Romania, guys.
More after the jump.
Instead of taking advantage of the romantic medieval surroundings by planning sure-fire makeout sessions, Emily announces that she has decided to use her one-on-one dates this week for guys that she's on the fence about.
An Ostrich-Egg-Shaped Heart
First up, Ostrich Egg Travis.
Now, here's the thing: I think Travis is kind of a dork. Mainly...I don't know...based on the fact that he brought an ostrich egg with him when he first came on the show. But he was growing on me. Despite his uber annoying voice (c'mon, Travis. Either go through puberty already, or bring it down an octave), he's funny and easy-going and sweet. And Emily obviously agreed - they practically went skipping, hand-in-hand, through the city streets of Duslkjioubkjicik together. Emily does that thing again where they find some sort of sight-seeing omen (in this case, a rock jutting out from a wall that you have to stand on and take off an article of clothing while balancing atop it) that leads to true love...seriously, what is up with this stuff? She finds this sort of thing in EVERY CITY they've been to so far, and she makes THE WORST GUY go through it with her. Travis fails the test, and also fails to take his shirt off while he's at it, which Emily is not happy about, because she wanted to know what was going on under that shirt of his. An ostrich-egg-shaped heart of gold, Emily. That's what was going on under there. AN OSTRICH-EGG-SHAPED HEART OF GOLD.
Back at the house, the guys speculate whether or not Emily and Travis will hit it off. Doug thinks that Travis can be romantic if he wants to be, which Real Housewife Ryan disagrees with, mainly based on the fact that Travis is not Ryan and therefore does not stand a chance at anything in life. "I don't think she has as big of a personality as what it takes to be in a relationship with him. Because I see the woman he's with have a funny crazy personality too, you know what I mean?" I had to go back and re-listen to what Ryan said specifically, because the first time I was too distracted by OH MY GOD WTF IS RYAN WEARING.
Bad boys in girlish tank tops. How could Emily not be all over that?!
As it happens, though, while Emily and Travis do look like they have a lot of fun together, there really isn't much a romantic spark. Watching them at dinner, I couldn't help but think about how they're totally meant to be super great pals...the kind who could totally gab on the phone for hours or go golfing together or be each other's fun platonic date to weddings or something. But they are not kissing buddies. And after Emily told him this and decided not to give him the rose, apparently Travis went to the beach, spent a lot of time in the sun, and got a faux-mohawk before crying about his feelings on-camera. Seriously, did anyone else notice that?! There were a couple shots of him walking through the dark streets of Dubrichiolidysyyiokdkic to the Lonely Hearts Club Van, but then the rest of his camera shots were of him sporting a fresh faux-hawk while tears ran down his slightly-sunburned face.
Which probably means he's going to be on Bachelor Pad, and they cut footage from there to splice into here. C'mon, Bachelor franchise. Let's get professional about this shit.
Scotland, Croatia...they're totally the same, right?
So then it was time for the Group Date, aka, the "We are all owned by Disney and soon you will be, too" product placement portion of the show. The group got to see an advance screening of "Brave", which helped them not only make astute metaphors to each of them choosing their own fate, but it also sequewayed nicely into the boys getting dressed up in highland costumes for a rousing bout of Highland Games.
Because, you know...it's Croatia, so why wouldn't you dress up in Scottish costume and play traditional Scottish sports? And producers, if you KNEW you were going to do this type of set-up, why didn't you just have everyone go to SCOTLAND after London instead of Croatia? COME ON! Whose job am I going to have to steal to get this shit done right?
This was very entertaining for me, except for the fact that it was OBVIOUSLY FREEZING and each guy was huddled up, hands clasped and teeth chattering, waiting for their turn to shoot a bow or throw a log. Lumpy Space Princess Chris did a horrible job. Youth Pastor Sean smoked everyone at everything. Jef With One F did well enough for me to feel justified in still having a huge crush on him.
So the lads did their thing, and Emily gave out this tin cup that was supposed to mean something, and even though Sean triumphed through every competition, she gave it to poor loser Chris. Which was kind of hilarious, because it was maybe the one time we've heard Sean make a sarcastic, "this is kind of bullshit" remark. But it was also kind of awful, because it made Chris feel like a winner again.
Bad news, too, because then he took that feeling all the way during the evening date. During alone time with Emily, Chris decided to tell Emily THAT HE WAS FALLING IN LOVE WITH HER. And then he did that weird head shake thing where he smiles and you know he thinks he's being cute but it's just really creepy and weird, and then he kissed her, and then I had to close my eyes for a minute and go back to my magical safe place where nothing can hurt me and I never feel sad again.
The highlights of the group date were: 1) Emily wore the most amazing black dress 2) Arie pushed her up against a building and kissed her, which is like EVERY SINGLE GIRL'S FANTASY IN THE ENTIRE WORLD 3) Jef With One F told Emily a secret, which was that he was "freaking crazy" about her, which just made me think again of 8th grade and how that boy you really like thinks he's being super smooth even though he's totally not but you just ignore it because you like him even though you know that after you break up you'll be super mad that he thinks you fell for that stupid stuff when you're obviously so much more sophisticated and mature than that.
Who wants to be the perfect companion that God made just for Ryan? Nobody, that's who.
You've probably been wondering, "But wait! Where is Real Housewife Ryan? Being a pro football player and a pro trainer, I bet he dominated everything and everyone." Nope - Real Housewife Ryan was spending time alone while he mentally prepared for his one-on-one date with Emily. Initially, when the house found out that Ryan had a one-on-one while in Croatia, people were pissed. Not me, though, because I remembered what Emily said - she was using this to spend time with people she was on the fence about.
Now, here's the thing - Emily and Ryan do seem to have a lot of fun together. Ryan is definitely a charmer, and Emily is not wrong in the fact that he is the guy you don't want to like but you find yourself giving in to despite yourself. I can't stand the guy, but I will admit that if I was on a craggy shoreline with a guy with like him who was obviously trying very hard to win my affection, it would be hard for me to be all, "Back off, freakishly handsome southern man!" But then he opens his mouth and talks some more, and then it's like all the moral strength and brain power comes back to you, full-force.
Let's take a little review of Ryan's most charming remarks from Monday's show:
"I see myself as an absolute front-runner. I mean, I can jump into a romantic connection with her, I mean I can manipulate the situation, I can get the girl, I know how to get the girl...I can come off as somewhat arrogant, but I think that's just me being truthful."
"I think it says a lot, you know, that I was chosen for this date. I keep things fresh and new and I feel very very confident. I know what I have to offer as a man. You know I spend time with the other guys and I love the other guys, but you know I just don't think they possess all the qualities that I do."
"I'm a guy who's, you know, somewhat of a perfectionist...you know I like to be my very best. Playing pro football and having, you know, certain gifts...I look at myself every day when I wake up and say to myself, "Who do you want to be today?" Most men do not do that. I've always been able to do very well at everything I've done, and I pick up momentum. I know that I am a very good looking guy. I would say that yeah, I'm due for a rose."
[talking to Arie] "You know I didn't think I was going to get the first second date because I got the first date. I actually thought you were going to get it, if not John...but I got that too, so I feel very good about that."
[to Emily] "The world is our pearl. No, it's not...it's our oyster. See, I'm always looking for the good in things, you know what I mean? I'm already thinking there's a pearl in there."
"She is definitely going to be someone's trophy wife, and I'm pretty sure I've got a good shot at that being mine."
"I've got turquoise shoes on tonight to impress you."
And THEN. AND THEN!
During the romantic wine-with-dinner portion of the date, Ryan pulls out a list.
And according to Ryan, "I'm fired up. She's gonna love it."
Top 12 Things Ryan Wants to Find In A Woman
1) Loyal, stands by my side good or bad
3) Not overly emotional, thinks before they react.
4) Encourager, always lifting me up and never ridiculing
6) Someone that's a nurturer. "I like that."
7) Confident and magnetic - somebody that people are drawn to. "And I think you have that." Loves to laugh.
8) Someone who's a servant, who puts their family before herself
11) sexy personality
12) Loves to catch my eye. "That's important."
And this is the part where we truly see the difference between being a Southern lady and the rest of us. Because if that were me sitting next to Ryan while he spewed this list of bullshit, I would have stopped him after number three, yelled at him a bunch about what narcissistic, self-absorbed, arrogant asshole he's being, and probably hit him across the head with a wine glass before stalking out. But Emily being Emily, she sits there, smiles politely and nods like she's listening, even though you can just SEE her stewing inside with every word Ryan says. It's so amazingly horrible, all of it.
Ryan finishes his list, Emily picks up the rose, and Ryan gets in position to hear a list from Emily about all the great qualities and gifts she sees in him. Instead, Emily basically tells him, "Your list is bullshit, and I hate you." Or wait...that was what I said. She said something much more polite, like, "I don't think we're looking for the same things, and that is why I cannot give you the rose tonight."
And THEN! Ryan starts FIGHTING HER on it! "That is very shocking. Because... I would not have seen that coming." Really, Ryan? What a surprise! Then he tells her that she's making a wrong choice. And continues to tell her how shocked he is and how she is making the wrong choice. STAND THE FUCK UP AND WALK OUT OF THERE, EITHER ONE OF YOU. STOP THE MADNESS AND RELEASE US FROM THIS PAIN. Emily, for her part, tells Ryan that this is the first time she's been unsure about her choice, and everyone in the world groans, rolls their eyes, and wants to slap her. Stop giving him ammunition, Emily! Put him in his place, tell him he's the weakest link, and wave bye-bye.
But no. The torture continues as Ryan works to wear her down, to the point where we're all holding our breath and praying that he doesn't convince her to change her mind. And it's super close there, for a minute or two. Like, hold your breath and get ready to kick the TV close. But thankfully, she holds her ground, even though Ryan continues to berate her for baffling him and making the wrong choice.
So this torture goes on for another ten minutes, until finally they walk out. Ryan hugs her, tells her he likes her and she's. making. the. wrong. choice.
Seriously. He said it just like that. Like a murderous robot would during a To-The-Death! quiz match or something.
But, Real Housewife Ryan is unflappable, though he can't imagine "how shocked the guys are to find out that I didn't come back. But we've built great friendships and I'll see those guys again."
Flash to the guys all high-fiving and hugging. Seriously. That's the kind of awesome TV that makes me love the editors of this show.
Real Housewife Ryan isn't done with loving the sound of his own voice, though. Here's his parting words of wisdom and direction for those of us who may not be as blessed with worldly gifts as he has been -
"Losin' sucks. Nobody wants to be a loser. When you look at me do you think I'm like...you're lookin' at a winner."
"I think some of the greatest men in the world, you know, get down, something causes them to fall down and they get back up. One thing that I defintely hope in all of this is the that way that I am portrayed is for who I really am. You know, and not confident for the wrong things because I think, spend five minutes with me and I'll tell that while I have been blessed with many worldly gifts, those are not worth being confident in. So...for your guys who are cutting this up, do a good job in portraying exactly who I am and not, you know, an arrogant ass."
AND END SCENE!
Late Night Sneak Attack From Arie The Lamprey Kisser
After the date, Arie decides to sneak out and surprise Emily with a late-night visit. It's pretty boring, with Arie just telling Emily that she made the right decision by sending Ryan home, then kissing her like a lamprey again, and then confessing in the voice-over during the walk back home that he would ask Emily to marry him tomorrow, which I used later to start a huge fight between me and my domestic partner Chris.
Carrie Underwood Makes a Surprise Appearance At The Rose Ceremony
I find the rose ceremonies on this season to be incredibly boring. If it's not boring, it's 4 Seasons of Awkwardness, with a bunch of crying and weird passes and stilted conversations. Emily shows up in Carrie Underwood's dress and decides to talk to Wolf John about his dead grandparents and to Doug about his inability to close the deal (oh my god...how uncomfortable and awkward was THAT conversation?! Doug was literally sweating and saying, "shoot" over and over. It was disgusting. C'mon, Doug! How did Austin even get MADE when you have such a hard time even KISSING a girl?!) Speaking of...I don't know if you guys will remember this, but Doug is a dad and has a son named Austin. Whom he misses. A lot. So much so that he breaks down, literally blubbering and sobbing over how much he misses him. Which, I get it...it would be tough to be away from your child like that. But the most amazing thing was how they just kept going with the crying scene, dragging it out to the point where it was super uncomfortable to watch. Which also made it hilarious.
Rose time for the Rose Buds! Emily hands out all the roses but one, leaving Doug and John. Then she runs out of the room, interrupts Chris Harrison as he's trying to hit on some crew member, and tells him that she wants to do something differently. WE all think that she's just going to send both of them home and be done with it, but no...she decides to keep BOTH of them. Great. Can't wait to see more of those guys.
Now that we're down to six guys, we are once again heading to what Emily thinks is the perfect place to fall in love (doesn't she say that about EVERY place they've been to, though? Right? She does, doesn't she?) - Prague! So fuck those guys, because they have now been everywhere I've ever wanted to go.
AND - next week, Emily finds out about Arie's past relationship with a producer on the show who has also become one of Emily's close friends. And she is NOT HAVING THAT SHIT.
According to the show spoiler sites I've been checking up on, I mean.
Until next time...