We’re at the midway point and there are 8 guys left, clamoring for roses on this season of The Bachelorette…
When we left Part 1 of this recap (which can be found waaaaay over on the USA Today site right here) Des was gearing up to show James just what she thinks of guys who aren’t there to fall in love with her, when…oh oh, it seems she’s cooled down a bit from her initial, somewhat colorful reaction to the news. (What news you ask? Well, read Part 1 already and hurry back!) She knows things get taken out of context and is willing to give James the benefit of the doubt. Or at least enough rope to hang himself with. I’m thinking it’s more the latter, but she’s at least trying to be open minded.
So,it’s Group Date time and we’re in a massive futbol stadium in Barcelona and I forget all about James, the pack mentality of the other men, and well, pretty much everything except what Juan Pablo does for long sleeved UnderArmor. He was a professional soccer player, so he’s got something of an edge here. Frankly, I don’t care if Des goes off and plays Tiddly Winks with the other 6 for the next hour while we watch JP kick on goal for a bit. Maybe he’ll get hot enough at some point that the UnderArmor will come off. Hey, it could happen! And don’t you think we should be there when it does? I mean, they make us slog through all that other “he’s not here for the riiight reeeeeasons” whining. Where’s the reward I say? (Also? I love Brooks’ joking that JP’s name, in English, means “You have no chance, and I’m going after Desiree, this moment, on the soccer field.” Heh. That Brooks…always good for witty banter. We need to see more of this guy. He’s been too back burner lately.) I wonder if JP got passed over for the solo date because she knew he’d shine in this one? He’s taking full advantage, anyway, as well he should. His time as filler, I fear, is close to an end.
Des informs the guys they’re playing a game that day, against her and her team. They’re all fearing a pro men’s team, so when she walks out with a group of girls, JP and Kasey are all “oh, we so own this.” Even Brooks, to my dismay, kids that if it’s Girl Scouts, he’s about to “bake some cookies”. (Okay, so I might have smiled a little. But still. Oh, Brooks.) JP does allude to the fact that, as a pro women’s team, you know, they might have some skills. I think they’re all in for a lesson. I refresh the tutti in my fruity umbrella drink and sit back. Soccer School? Is in session. The guys get cocky after running 2 in, then the girls go on a 10 goal run.
James as the big guy in goal didn’t do squat. As in, he clapped as the ball went by him over and over, and ducked a few times, but for all he’s a big, linebacker looking dude, he didn’t so much as try. At all. This did not endear him to a group already looking to lynch the guy.
It’s time for the post-soccer party at Des’ hacienda and this is, for all intents, this week’s cocktail party. Kasey makes it clear that he wants to play hall monitor and make sure James doesn’t get a Des Pass. Now, my love for James has waned, but Kasey annoys the daylights out of me. As the oldest in my fam, I was never much of a rule breaking renegade, but I wasn’t the whiny kid who ran and ratted out everyone to the teacher either. Kasey? He’s so that kid. I’m not enamored of the James Persona, but Kasey? #FocusOnYourOwnGame
Des takes Not So Stealthy Chris aside first for alone time, and while he gets that the tension is likely to come to a head during the party, he’s not about to screw up his personal time by going there. I’m liking this guy more every time I see him. Des is feelin’ it, too, because this time, she’s the one with the poetry. And it’s no lame four liner, it’s a whole postcard full of tiny little lines. Something to do on the plane ride over…
Back in the other room, Kasey is trying to stoke the fire and so naturally he goes to the only Mad Mike left (clearly not taking that clue) and to the surprise of no one, MG is more than happy to fan the flames. So off Kasey and MG go, swaggering in to do the High Noon with James. Now, Kasey is all “if he’s a man, he’ll own what he did and apologize.” Um, Kasey? Apologize for what? Being honest about what a runner up (which all but one of them will be) might expect post-show? And to whom? To the other guys? See, this goes back to that Think This Through thing. There is no real end game here other than to wring a confession out of him that might get Des to boot him off. And given Drew has already made Des aware of what he said, the ball is in her court. Not theirs. Honestly, it’s all so schoolyard ridiculous. So, Kasey serves it up, and James just looks at him like he’s sprouted two heads.
In the other room, we get Des now on her pillow lounge with Brooks, who is comfy and happy with how things are going, which makes Des really happy and sparkly. We should pay attention to that sparkly part. Me, I’m just kinda feelin’ weird that one guy leaves her bed and another comes in and hops on for a chat, apparently just blanking out that she was just making out in that very spot with another guy. Aren’t there any other private places she can go with them where no one will break in? It’s just kinda skeevy is all. Just me? Alrighty then.
Oh…we’re forced to go back and deal with Patrol Boy Kasey and Bad Boy James, and I’m already really tired of this and even with my fast twitch FF button pushing we’ve pretty much seen this whole thing play out already. Can we just skip to where the conversation takes place between him and Des, as that’s the only one that matters? Can we? No, of course not. It escalates and James essentially says what I said, he was shooting the sh*t off camera and Kasey wants to make a federal crime out of it. Why? I have no idea. NSS Chris is trying to quiet them down, but otherwise adds nothing. MG, who wasn’t even there, mind you, has no problem stirring the pot further because that’s all he is capable of doing. Frankly, James is cocky, he is, so it’s no surprise if he’s braggin’ thinking about what might come his way IF he doesn’t end of with Des. What most of the guys don’t seem to understand, is that ONLY ONE of them will, and one of the other guys have ended up as the new Bachelor every season now forever. So it’s not all that wild a thing for them to speculate about after a long group date when you feel you’re not numero uno any longer and alcohol is involved. MG and Kasey both need to dial it way back and James needs to just walk away and say he’ll talk to Des, not them. Does that happen? Is this The Bachelorette? Of course not.
James looks like a cornered animal, but mostly because he’s not really quick enough to explain, rationally what went down. Of course, it wouldn’t have mattered anyway. So Kasey runs off to squeal all about it to Des. WHO ALREADY KNOWS. Which he knows. (And they say women are the gossipers? Really?) Des thanks him and sends him back to his pack, she’s had enough, so goes out and calls James for a private meeting. He’s doomed. And though I normally respect the guys for trying to have her back, MG and Kasey have to realize they’re doomed at this point. At best, their patrolmen on the front lines so that Des can get to know the actual contenders while they are keeping score of everything everyone says, and scribbling down their reports. More or less. Des proves we’re somewhat on the same page by announcing that there will be no rose and she escorts the rest of the guys out. See ya! Thanks for SUCH a lovely evening.
James has to know it’s all over for him, no matter what. Des hasn’t exactly been shy in dealing with this kind of thing. And given she’s had to deal with it multiple times means her patience, yeah it’s pretty thin. She has good connections with NSS Chris, Brooks, and a growing one with Drew, so while he was in a good place there temporarily, she can let him walk and focus on the other three. He doesn’t have that luxury, which…is partly why he made the comments he did. But I doubt that will get any real traction here. Also? Kasey is all “the fact that no one gets a rose and it’s all James’ fault makes my blood boil.” Because you had nothing to do with the timing of that? Oh for the love of….#ShutUpKasey!
I still think James was just shooting off his mouth, but he sucks at defending himself. And Des makes it clear she completely believes the guys before he says a single word. So…it’s kind of an ambush. Now, James is done, he’s done. But the way this all went down was also pretty skanky. That Drew and Kasey couldn’t discern context, drunken boastful bragging, or willfully ignored it, is on them, but they’re hailed the heroes of the piece. Now, drunken boasting isn’t all that attractive either, and might be grounds to send him packing in and of itself, but that’s not what is happening here. And he does himself no favors.
In the end, after tears are shed on both sides, Des realizes she’s in no shape to make final decisions, so sends him back to the Hacienda and heads to her room alone. The guys are certain James is history, so imagine their surprise when he comes back in. To be honest, though James is done, and there’s no telling if he’s upset because the guys turned on him, or because he lost any chance with Des or future Bachelor status, but I did kind of enjoy that little moment. Perverse maybe, but Kasey and MG annoyed the crap out of me with how they handled the whole thing, so a moment of “Wha?” was fine with me. Let Des handle it. It’s her call. NOT YOURS. He doesn’t say anything other than a quiet “Gentlemen, goodnight,” and wanders off to his room. Aaaand….scene.
It’s the morning of Naked Zak’s Solo Date and we’re all relieved. NSS Chris tries to shift the mood away from the events of the night before, but Zak is freaking out that she’s going to be all destroyed and not into their date. Chris is finally like “enough already, dude, go have a good time!” And take the tension with ya!
They have an artistic afternoon sketching, and, to his credit, Zak totally goes for it and it lightens the mood exponentially. Then….yeah. The slender, oh so pale, male nude model comes in things get awkward. Des apparently wasn’t aware of this phase, so it wasn’t a Sean Lowe Torture Date Especial, and yet, still… I know I wouldn’t have been having any fun and I would have felt awkward for my date. Plus? The model was kinda creepy. Just sayin. Again, to his credit, Zak does go with the flow, then lightens things up by exiting and coming in in his own terry cloth robe, making Des a lot nervous. he’s wearing tighty whiteys, which takes a lot of nerve anyway, but at least he’s a lot more entertaining to draw. If she could stop laughing long enough as he poses to actually draw anything. So, it’s all pretty much a Naked Zak kinda date after all. We should have seen this coming.
They go to dinner and Zak is all “I’m already in love!” so that’s a little scary, but we’ve seen that coming in the way he’s stalked-spied her other dates and alone times, given the chance. Of course, she did mention in that chat with Host Chris that he’d get the sexy kiss award, so he’s got that going for him. Which must be saying something, because the other guys don’t look all that slouchy in that department, either. They do have their bonding time and there’s a lot more there between them then we’ve seen, so that’s kind of a surprise to me, this connection she feels to him. He stays.
Back at the hacienda, James pulls Drew aside to get his perspective on what he thought of the limo ride and he makes it very clear, in a far more articulate, less accusatory way than Kasey did, more or less stating why he was there and leaving James to define his own path. That James sought him out does lend him a little cred in this, as he seemed pretty straightforward in just wanting to hear Drew out. He does try to state his case, which is pretty much exactly what I said, but the guys are so full on hard case about it being all or nothing for Des, they can’t even conceive that a conversation like that could or should take place while still on the show. Given where it took place, and between two people in what was otherwise private still gives him no slack and so I have no patience, really, with either of them. In a pure world? Maybe. There is nothing pure about a process where she gets to make out with 25 guys and string them along, but they’re not supposed to be realists and at least wonder what will happen when it’s over for them IF that happens.
They all need to grow a large step up and get real. However, time is well past now for James, his ship has sailed. But for me? Kasey, MG, and even holier-than-thou-it’s-Des-or nothing (and how dare you suggest otherwise!) Drew can head out with them. Chris, Brooks, and surprisingly, Zak, look like the Final 3 to me. With Juan Pablo providing us with a lot of fabulous screen time along the way.
Des drops in and snags James, who she tells us she’s sending home before she tells him. (Because this show is incapable of not telling us what’s about to happen, without just letting it happen.) I agree at this point, there’s no recovery, but the idea that the guys are all back in the condo, all smug that now the “evil, sinister” (really MG? Really?) James is gone they can all focus on Des and it will be unicorns and lollipops and puppies all around. Because if they don’t realize that by their very nature they will have to fill that void with some other target, then…well, they’re not big on big picture reality anyway, as Drew just made oh so clear, so why should they start now?
James is up front about what was said and the context and Des’ resolve is shaken. She wants the guys to know she trusts them and that she believes in them, because she does. But she does get where James is coming from, because she’s smart enough to know from being on the other side, the mental games you have to play with yourself to stay okay with the whole ridiculous and very unnatural competition you’ve signed up for. In the end, she can’t cut the cord. Yet. And I get it, she has the perspective they don’t yet. So he goes back inside and yeah…awkward. But what can he do at this point? He’d dead dude walking, so just roll.
NSS Chris kills me, trying to get past the silence he’s all, “So…what did you talk about?” James is very clear about reality and Chris loses it (and me a little) by being all “You can’t be here for anything other than 100% falling in love with Des and there can be no other reality” which, really guys? Are you even hearing yourself? What kind of deluded crap is that? They are trying to purposefully misinterpret him and paint themselves as some holier than thou there can be only one girl for me forevah bs…and it’s making me not like any of them any more. Thanks, Show. James excuses himself from the lynch mob and I don’t blame him. I want them all to go home.
Finally, mercifully, it’s Rose Ceremony time…
Host Chris comes out as Des dithers and after reminding everyone that Drew and Zak are already safe with roses on their lapels, that there are only 3 roses on that platter. Yep. Three are going home. And all of a sudden, guys are gulping. Yeah. I would be gulping, too, dudes. So, I think Kasey and MG, with no one on ones, are finally out. Then, either James or JP. Now, James can’t win this thing at this point, and I’m so past done beating the villain drum that I hope she sends him out and keeps Juan Pablo. Which is also self serving, but sue me. There could be more soccer. There could be. And then who would you want around? I’m just sayin.
NSS Chris gets the first nod, then Brooks. No surprises so far. Oh, for the love of….she gives the last one to smug MG. Really, Des? Really? He’s a pot stirrer and they need to leave along with the supposed villains if the tension is truly going to go away. And his smarmy “Case dismissed”….shut up, MG. I also wasn’t loving NSS Chris’ little smug smile, either. Brooks, you’re looking better every second. At the moment though, I’m not thrilled with any of them.
So, I say let’s brighten up the room and give some stuff away! If you read Part 1 of this recap, you know who won last week’s Book Swag. Well, lets Giveaway some more, shall we? Here’s the deal: send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with “I’m in the mood for some summer swag!” in the subject line. List ANY title of mine in the body of the email, along with digital device or postal address. You can check out my website bookshelf right here, do a little browsing…
Then let me know what you think, Blog Babes. Was James a sinister villain? Was he just being a cocky realist? Do Drew and Chris need a reality pill? Is there any wind strong enough to move a hair on Drew’s head? And can someone put a muzzle on MG? Also, Juan Pablo? You can come shed all your tears right here on my shoulder. I know. I’m a giver like that. I give and I give.
Now it’s your turn now...DISH!!
And check back in next week to see what drama they can stir up and manufacture on our next stop! And you know they will! We’re off to Madeira, off the coast of Portugal and because the show just can’t help itself, we get a minute of previews of the Final 5‘s happy journeys into the sunset….or (dun dun dun)….NOT! Followed by five minutes of tears. From all of them. Oh for the love of…. You’ll join me won’t you? Don’t send me in there alone!!