We started tonight’s episode of The Bachelorette with Emily establishing that it takes a village to raise a Ricki. It really is fascinating to think that all their real-life stuff was still going on while they filmed the show, and that’s precisely why I loved that the first individual date consisted of Emily and Ryan making cookies, cutting up some orange slices, and driving to soccer practice. It reminded me of Melanie’s (brilliant) theory that one of the Bachelorette dates should involve taking care of a couple of kids who have a stomach virus. That’s when you see what a potential spouse is made of, my friends.
By suppertime, though, we were back in regular-ish Bachelorette territory. Emily and Ryan were all dressed up for dinner, and they traded in the Suburban for some sort of fancy sports car. When they first sat down for their meal, I kept thinking, OH, THE AWKWARD, but after a few minutes they seemed to relax and laugh a little bit. That does not mean, however, that I was not ABSOLUTELY HORRIFIED by the portion of the evening where they had to dance on a platform in front of a very large audience who seemed intent on filming the festivities with their cell phones. Surprisingly, Ryan did not run screaming for the Charlotte International Airport. And he got a rose, so I guess it all worked out.
Next up was a group date with thirteen guys and The Muppets, which was every bit as painful as it sounds. The bachelors had to write a comedy routine and perform it in front of an audience, so it was basically a variety show date – with puppets. EVERY GIRL’S DREAM COME TRUE.
After the variety show everybody had some time to hang out, and unfortunately Kalon demonstrated that he may have missed a day or fourteen in his interpersonal communication class at college. In the end Emily gave the group date rose to Jef (one F! only one F! a second F is superfluous!), and Kalon consoled himself by admiring the toggle closures on his cardigan.
An individual date with Joe was next on the agenda, and even I have to admit that Joe showed some charisma. He seemed at ease in his skin, and that was a refreshing change-o-pace after the insecurity-a-thon on the group date. While Emily and Joe went for a swim at The Greenbrier, the guys at the house talked about the responsibility of dating a woman with a daughter. Kalon insulted Doug, a single parent, by implying that Doug put fatherhood on hold in order to participate in The Bachelorette. Doug was quick to shut down the discussion, but oh, Kalon. You had a rough go of it tonight, didn’t you?
Honestly, I don’t think the toggle sweater helped matters.
Meanwhile, back at The Greenbrier, Emily and Joe sat down for dinner, and when Joe couldn’t explain where he wants to be in five years (other than, you know, “happy” and “no regrets”), Emily decided to cut Joe and his charisma loose. I especially appreciated Emily’s near eye-roll after Joe’s car pulled away from the resort while fireworks exploded in the sky. A burly security-type guy removed Joe’s suitcase from the house in Charlotte while the guys expressed their disbelief by saying things like, “No way!” and “Dude!” and “Huh?” and “Dude!”
So, by the time the cocktail party rolled around, Joe’s departure had already sent a loud and clear message that EMILY, SHE MEANS BUSINESS. Arie and Emily caught up after a week with no date, and their conversation seemed easy and good. Afterwards Ryan delivered a letter to Emily (and God bless her, she read the whole thing out loud) while Tony seethed in the corner. Kalon eventually managed to grab some one-on-one time with Emily, and he turned on the charm. The guys in the house mocked his vocabulary and his luggage, at which point I knew that he was guaranteed a rose because he is officially this season’s drama magnet. Every season has one.
Aaaaaand, just like clockwork, Kalon got the first rose. Then there were some other guys who all sort of ran together, but eventually we made it to the previews for next week’s episode. I was antsy because it’s the second week of the show, and we still haven’t seen footage that involves an emergency vehicle. TOTALLY UNPRECEDENTED. However, we did see footage of lightning, so clearly next week’s episode is FRAUGHT WITH DANGER.
I don’t read spoiler sites, but I do have a prediction for the final rose. Based on the conversations they’ve had the last two weeks and the fact that this guy seems really comfortable when he’s around her – and she seems really nervous when she’s around him – my week two final rose prediction is Arie.
What do y’all think?