It’s been a little while, but, you know, finals. Just because we’re second semester seniors now doesn’t mean we’re off the grind; we’ve watched this show long enough to know the grind never stops. We’re back on Bachelor grind as we try to make sense of this season.
First up this week is the first of two group dates, which invites Maquel, Jacqueline, Lauren B., Tia, Marikh, Bekah M., Bibiana and Krystal on a wrestling outing. Wrestling? We guess that was the only thing left in the producers’ minds to keep this season interesting.
Maybe this date was supposed to be fun, but considering the grave seriousness of everyone there, fun is in no one’s vocabulary. The girls are coached by Angela and Ursula, two women from the original 80’s series of GLOW. By “coached,” we mean that they just yell at the girls who are hesitant to engage in physical combat on national television in front of the guy that they’re all dating.
Bibiana is a little extra feisty today, showing some attitude to Angela, and Angela makes fun of her name. Whoa. That took a turn. Bibiana and Tia, who also can’t handle the pressure, go cry in a corner. Yikes.
After a notably inappropriate and uncomfortable bit that includes scandalous costumes and a little bit of fighting, the ladies and Arie take their cocktail party to an RV-themed bar. As usual, Krystal finds Arie, and as usual, Bibiana is upset. We’re detecting a theme. We were on Bibiana’s side at first, but she should know this entire franchise hasn’t ever been and isn’t ever gonna be “fair.” Go get your man, girl!
Bekah gets the group date rose, despite never doing anything remotely memorable or interesting the entire date. Hm.
Lauren S. receives the next date card, which says, “You had me at Merlot.” The message causes the other ladies to wonder aloud if wine will be involved. Does Merlot ring a bell…?
Arie takes Lauren S. out to a vineyard, where they do nothing but walk around and have an intriguing conversation about cardigans and bedtime.
During dinner, Lauren continues the story-with-no-ending vibe we’ve gotten today, so much so that Arie actually EATS THE FOOD! That’s right, folks, you read that correctly. Arie is EATING. He actually takes a bite of the food set out lovingly set out for them by producers. All these years, we were convinced it was prop food. Amazing.
We can’t really blame Arie for eating the food. Lauren S. seems cool, but after she shares that her mom got an eye infection while she was in college and that she doesn’t really know what “science” is, we’re checking out.
Arie tells Lauren that he can’t give her the date rose. “I don’t even know,” he says. We relate.
We are then taken back to the mansion where the girls are shocked to see Lauren S.’s bags taken away. Krystal proceeds to inform all the girls how this is a sign they need to use their time with Arie better. As expected, the ladies don’t take too kindly to this unwarranted, completely obvious advice and Krystal’s villain persona is further developed.
The next date card arrives with the names: Ashley, Becca K., Brittany, Jenna, Caroline, Chelsea and Annaliese. It is inscribed “Love is Ruff”– how creative Arie!– and it takes the girls a second too long for them to realize this date will include dogs.
After coming to this conclusion, all the girls are excited. Well, everyone but Annaliese. Surprisingly, she had another traumatic experience with a dog as a small child. Between bumper cars and dogs, Annaliese seems to have had the two most fun childhood things taken away from her. After a poignant dramatic recreation of this traumatic event, the group date begins!
The ladies are greeted by Arie in a park with his dog and are told they will be performing a dog show in the Grove this afternoon. After this, a herd of dogs comes running toward the ladies and a look of despair crosses Annaliese’s face.
Each lady is paired up with a dog except for Annaliese who is given the job of pooper scooper– that’s ruff! While the dog show may have seemed like a great idea to Arie, the dogs they were given are not well-trained in the slightest. Oh well, when has anything ever gone to plan on the Bachelor?
The ladies meet Arie at a swanky lounge in Downtown LA and again, Arie ends up talking to Chelsea first. They don’t seem to talk about anything important, but Chelsea insists afterwards that their relationship has really progressed. According to our calculations, they have had a grand total of three conversations so far. I guess we’ll just have to take her word for it!
The rest of the night goes well for everyone except Annaliese. Her time with Arie left all of Bachelor Nation with hardcore second-hand embarrassment. Chelsea receives the group date rose, but no surprise there. Arie may be the “Kissing Bandit” but Chelsea is for sure the Rose Thief.
Next comes the cocktail party, and Bibiana crafts a clever plan. Worried that she didn’t have a enough time with Arie this week, she crafts a romantic space for them to sit and chat in the front of the Bachelor mansion. It includes a telescope for stargazing, which we have to say is pretty cool. It’s 2018, so all we have to say is: shoot your shot!
Unfortunately, Bibiana’s plans for a romantic evening go awry once again when Arie and another lady stumble upon the romantic setup. Arie pretends like he totally knew this was there and continues to bring ladies there to “talk”–he isn’t called the kissing bandit for nothing!–for the rest of the evening. During one of these chats, Bibiana comes outside to find Arie on her setup with another woman. Ouch!
Annaliese, the only woman who hasn’t kissed Arie, is feeling the pressure. During her time with the Bachelor, she confronts him about it. He uncomfortably makes the excuse that their relationship just isn’t there yet. A cringe instantly cripples all of Bachelor Nation. Annaliese goes to her room and cries, but unfortunately, her window is open and she can hear Arie kissing another girl on the balcony. Whoops.
Later, she decides that another confrontation is in order. Annaliese steals Arie for another chat, and this time asks him if he sees a future with her. Noticeably uncomfortable, Arie makes it known that he resents being “put on the spot.” Okay, bud. Not like an entire show dedicated to yourself would ever put you on the spot. Ultimately, he tells her that he doesn’t see the relationship progressing. Annaliese packs up and heads home.
After Annaliese departs, the roses that night go to everyone but Bibiana. We, like much of Bachelor Nation, are sorely disappointed. Bibiana was our straight-talking gal, and the only one who seemed to provide any entertainment on this show. We bid goodbye to her as we painfully realize there are still more than 15 women left–we think, as this episode was so draining we can’t even bother to count. We’ll see you next week for week 4.
Amy, Andrea and Josie