It’s week 2 and I already have a lot of feelings. The preview for this week’s episode is not helping either–we’re treated to a full 2:30 of Ben making out with people, Ice Cube and Kevin Hart inexplicably promoting Ride Along 2 on a show whose audience is largely not the correct demographic, and Olivia being a complete bitch. Oh boy, am I ready. LET’S DO THIS.
We open almost immediately on a completely gratuitous shot of Ben changing. Rather a not-so-subtle close up of Ben’s crotch, and honestly, I’m cool with it. It’s like America’s version of the Fantasy Suite, and I’d like to thank the editors for this season of The Bachelor. So while Ben is flashing a nation, the girls are never not drinking. They’re indulging in mimosas, but somehow it’s the one time we’ve ever seen Lace sober, which is super not fun at all. Here comes the first date card! Jackie, LB, Lauren H, Becca, Amber, Mandi, JoJo, Jubilee, Jennifer, and Lace: “Let’s learn about love…”–Ben. WHAT A DUMB DATE CARD. ONE: IT’S LITERALLY ALL THE GIRLS. LIKE SIMPLY THE MINIMUM REQUIREMENT OF GIRLS TO FORM A GIRL SCOUT TROOP, PROBABLY. ALSO. WHAT A DUMB SENTENCE. I’m clearly very stirred by these date cards. All I’m saying is #MariaWaldkirchWouldLikeToMakeThePunsForTheDateCardsOnTheBachelor. Let’s get it trending, people. Anyway, we’re whisked away to “Bachelor High” which has the least impressive signage I’ve seen since my local strip mall put in a “TanFastic” tanning salon. Immediately, JoJo says she’s never been this turned on in a high school, which simply cannot be true, due to, you know, hormones and stuff, but OKAY, JOJO. It’s a team challenge apparently, and the winner of the challenge will be named the Bachelor High Homecoming Queen in what is potentially the saddest thing that has ever happened. Jubilee is ex-military, though, so both she and I are confident. Except, wait, is she partnered with Lace for this?! Odds are they will go up in enormous flames. Well, spoiler alert, but they do. Not enormous flames, however, just like really tepid 8th grade fake lava. The ladies have to make a volcano erupt, which I’m a little sad Christ King School in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin never made me do (#PrayForWarsaw), but it’s actually kind of a clever challenge. They have to put in the right ingredients for a good relationship to make the volcano work. Welp, Jubilee is not confident that Lace can read, so they definitely, definitely fail. Next up is the apple bobbing contest, which I’m still wondering which class it’s supposed to be in reference to, but Jackie is super bad at it and all the girls make fun of her being bad with her mouth. Hey, cheap shot, ladies, but, yeah, Jackie is not great with her mouth. Next up is Geography class and all these women have to do is put Indiana on a map. Well, I’ve driven through Indiana approximately 374 times in my life, so I was giggling at these women who were NOT USING THE GREAT LAKES AS AN ANCHOR, but it wasn’t until I saw Becca and JoJo placing the state sideways that I had to physically turn the TV off, walk around, and wipe the tears from my eyes. Next up is Gym class and the women need to just make a few free throws. Well, they simply can’t. But Amber and Mandi pull it out in the end and it’s a head to head, just the two of them. Well, the head to head is still Gym class, specifically the Track and Field section of the year, which honestly just seems like the producers forgot about the like 9 other classes any American would have had to take to graduate high school, but whatever. Mandi won, and I mean, she straight up kicked ass on those tiny dog show hurdles. She’s still a weirdo, though, so I’m just over it that she’s won. Everyone is super emotional about losing, which already bodes well for the future of this season. We’re super focusing on JoJo, though, for some reason, so by the Transitive Property of Reality Television, she’s either being sent home or she’s gonna come in first.
Now it’s time for the night portion of the date which is just another cocktail party (like I said, these women are never not drinking), and Becca immediately gets time with Ben and immediately shows him that she can play basketball. He’s suuuuper touchy feely with her, so he clearly likes her, but he doesn’t kiss her, which doesn’t seem that weird for a guy who’s on his first date, but does seem weird knowing that he’s about to kiss like 4 other women with whom he had seemingly less chemistry. Jennifer (my personal fave atm) gets the first real kiss of the season, though–SUCK IT, LACE.
CUT BACK TO THE OTHER WOMEN TIME. Olivia is probably, if not clinically, circumstantially depressed because she says that “the date card is the only thing getting [her] through today”, which is largely concerning. At this point in my notes, I have a line that simply reads, “Olivia’s mouth is 7 mouths.” So. Anyway, Caila, “Join me for a day of surprises…”–Ben. UGH. AGAIN. LIKE. UGH. I. JUST. UGH.
Okay here comes my number one issue with this show. Like of all issues, this is my issue. Jennifer rejoins the group of girls and instantly reveals that she kissed Ben. Like, bitch, you know that this is going to cause some drama and everyone is going to hate you. And, oh yeah, Lace is there, so she might actually like murder you, can you please just lie for a single second and just not tell anyone anything? Lace gets pissed about it and commandeers Ben and apparently now she thinks that she and Ben are on the same page. However, Ben could not look like he wants to run more with his body language. Luckily, though, Ben was making eye contact with her during their one on one conversation, so she won’t have that as a reason to freak out this week. Praise be from on high, though, because Jubilee cuts in being the damn star that she is and it pisses Lace off while also getting one on one time with him, which clearly America wants, so it’s truly a win/win/win/win/win/a million more wins. So, my notes are continuously interjecting in this recap, but I have, in succession, “Ugh, Jubilee is literally the best” immediately followed by “ugh maybe Ben might be the worst”. This conversation is really showing Ben’s inability to reply with human words and emotions when a girl opens her heart to him. Jubilee: “I was adopted from Haiti, I know you do humanitarian work, I just wanted to share that part of me with you.” Ben: “Thank you for telling me that.” UMM OKAY BEN. YOU’RE PROBABLY THE GUY WHO SAID THANK YOU AFTER YOUR GRADE SCHOOL GIRLFRIEND TOLD YOU SHE LOVED YOU WHICH IS WHY SHE DUMPED YOU THE SAME NIGHT SHE KISSED YOU AT THE WARSAW, IN CINEPLEX. Okay, so I’m completely, totally on board with Jubilee, though, and I’m glad Ben likes Jubilee enough to make out with her so we get to hang out with her for at least another week I’m pretty confident. But, as soon as Jubilee heads back to the girls, she commits the cardinal sin. Just stop telling people you kissed Ben. Period. End of sentence. What good is it going to do. This stirs Lace, though, and thank god, she goes to interrupt Ben and who I’m assuming is with LB, but I truly only saw her face for a single moment. Anyway, it’s a very unproductive conversation for the two of them and then finally, it’s JoJo time! Spoiler alert: I’m a huge JoJo fan (both the 13 year old wunderkind with such hits as “Leave (Get Out)” and “Too Little Too Late” as well as the aforementioned The Bachelor contestant). Okay so it’s time for Ben and JoJo to hang out and they go to a helipad, which is cool, but then they have really amazing chemistry and start making out and if we’re being straight up honest, their chemistry gives me straight up butterflies and I’m straight up thrilled to see where this goes. That’s done and then immediately and unsurprisingly, Ben gives a rose to JoJo and we’re done with this weird ass date with simply too many women.
Now it’s time for Caila’s date of surprises and I’m not looking forward to it. Caila annoyed me so much last week and I really am cringing at the thought of her delivering her “50 Shades of Crazy” joke for a third horrid time. Before I can dwell on it too much, Ice Cube and Kevin Hart are brought in, because of course they are, and they’re apparently going to tag along on this date with Caila and Ben and, oh yeah, Ice Cube and Kevin Hart simply want to take Caila on the cheapest date possible? They hated the 50 shades joke as much as I did, perhaps? Anyway, they haggle with a street vendor over some really average flowers, they go to a liquor store, and then they end up at a hot tub store which apparently has in store demos and Kevin Hart has his peen simply out in the open. It’s really a weird date and even I’m like, can we please just move past this? Ride Along 2 sounds more enjoyable than this forced interaction with its stars.
CUT BACK TO THE OTHER WOMEN TIME. Amanda is FaceTiming her kids which is sickly adorable, but also why has any parent ever signed up for this show ever? Anyway, Emily, Shushanna, Sam, Olivia, Haley, Amanda: “Are we a perfect match?”–Ben. UGH. STOP IT. FIX. JESUS. HELP. UGH. UGH.
In his parting words to Ben, Kevin Hart basically says he hates Caila, which warrants a giant THUMBS UP for Caila from me. I am constantly rejecting what Kevin Hart has an opinion on, quite honestly. Okay, then Ben and Caila go to a wonderful dinner and have a really honest to goodness great relationship talk and the more time I spend with her, the more I actually do like Caila. I still think she might only be 17 years old, but she seems like a sweet 17 year old. When they’re getting their coats on and getting ready to leave, I can’t help but notice that NOT A SINGLE BITE OF FOOD HAS BEEN EATEN. LIKE NOT EVEN A CRUMB. Simply full plates of food are left, but anyway, they have an Amos Lee concert to go to. Ah, yes, the classic private concert for The Bachelor and his date. As a former singer, I can tell you, there is nothing in the world I would hate more than performing for a couple. A single couple. Two bodies. Neither of which is really honestly interested in hearing you. Please, The Bachelor producers, I am begging of you, please, stop these personal concerts. No party involved is not wondering what to do with their hands or eyeballs. Ugh, it ends adorably and Ben starts singing to Caila and all I can think is, “WHAT ABOUT JOJO, BEN?”
The final date of the week is upon us and we’re headed to the single most romantic place I could possibly think of: The American Cement Building. The real, actual name of the location was really, actually, The American Cement Building. I think they might have just asked Siri to take them to the nearest building and it was such a generic request that she had to reply with the most specific, yet somehow generic, place she could muster. This is another science focused date, as apparently the volcanoes were not enough to satiate Ben’s incessant need for data. This date does, however, bring my favorite line of week 2:
“It might be nice if data could lead me to the right woman.” –Ben Higgins, 2016
Oh boy, you and me both Benny boy. If only a really strange scientist could make men smell me and sit on a bed with me and make me run on a treadmill to develop that scent and put sensors on my eyeballs. Then, and only then, will I be confident in my choice of suitors. We all know this date was crazy town, but on the upside, we know Shushanna speaks English! Samantha smells sour, though, so I’d say that leveled out the date a bit more. Samantha, not surprisingly, got the lowest score and Olivia got the highest score. Perhaps the score was based upon largeness of mouth?
It’s time for the evening portion of this super weird date now and INSTANTLY Ben takes Olivia to his room and makes out with her. Whatever, we all knew it was going to happen and like, yeah, they clearly have a thing for each other, but she’s clearly not going to last forever because Ben is going to figure out that she’s a bitch, so let’s just move on. Ben grabs Twin #2, could not tell you honestly which one that is, but they actually have an okay conversation. Is Ben able to tell the twins apart? I sincerely hope not. Samantha and Ben have a conversation now and Ben apologizes for telling Samantha that she smells sour and tries to redeem himself, but can only think of “passionfruit” as an alternative descriptor which is the one fruit in human history that no one actually knows what it smells like. So, cool job, Ben. Love a tropical fruit ref. Time for Amanda and Ben to finally have a conversation. Amanda tells Ben that she has 2 daughters–Kinsley and Charley I believe? Just think of the whitest names you can think of and I’m sure those are their names. Amanda is super precious about it, though, and I really do like her and think she has a good heart, but she’s clearly just not cut out for this. She’s just so sweet, but Ben wants to make out with her anyway, so he does and it’s all grand. OF COURSE, though, Olivia gets the rose for the night and in her confessional she reveals that she doesn’t even know what rose ceremonies are which is a really good joke that I wish I had made, but goddamn Olivia made it so now I hate that joke.
It’s Rose Ceremony night! Ben walks in wearing a quite ill fitting 3 piece suit if I do say so myself and now I’m wondering if I ever really did find him attractive. It’s really truly an uneventful series of conversations barring Lace getting drunk again and telling Ben about pictures of her when she was a child. Read that, not showing Ben pictures, but simply describing them. It’s as if your grandparents pulled you into their living room to show you their slide collection, but instead of slides, it was just stories from the war, but you had to act interested because your grandpa might murder if you don’t give him a rose and maintain eye contact. Kinda sorta like that. Okay, then comes the straight up sweetest thing that has ever happened on this show and I legitimately teared up at this, but Ben wants to make barrettes for Amanda’s daughters so they feel involved in the process! Man, oh, man do I hope this was legitimately his idea because it is just so goddamn adorable.
TIME FOR THE ROSES. Here we go: Jubilee, Lauren B, Becca, Rachel (wut why), Lace, LB,
WAIT. LB asks to go speak to Ben. She’s out. I’m not even abbreviating that interaction, that’s quite literally the speed at which Ben asked if LB would accept his rose and her instant refusal of it. Anyway, now Ben gets to give out one more rose! Guess we know the very last girl was definitely not on his list!
Jennifer, Emily, Jami, Lauren H, Shushanna, Haley, and finally Amber.
Sorry, Amber, but your insecurity in your relationship with Ben was completely and totally founded in truth. HE DON’T WANT YOU THERE, GIRL. CAN’T WAIT TO SEE YOU ON BACHELOR IN PARADISE 3, THOUGH!
Well, we have to say goodbye to Jackie, Mandi, and Samantha, all women I thought would honestly last a bit longer, but I’m not too torn up about it. I’m sad for Samantha because America thinks she smells sour now, but I didn’t exactly want her to be taking time away from my new fave JoJo.
Next week on The Bachelor. Lauren B gets on a plane, presumably to just do her job as a flight attendant, Leah gets in a car, Jubilee gets in a pool, and, oh goody! Another private concert! Becca kisses Ben, Olivia’s still a bitch, and OH DAMN JUBILEE IS CRYING! Whoever is making that star cry needs to die a thousand deaths.
Until next week, folks, may the roses be ever in JoJo’s favor.