‘The Bachelor’ Goes Deep

The Bachelor
January 24, 2011

Michelle the Villainess can’t find anyone to cooperate and get into a sexy cat fight with her, so she punches herself in the eyeball? Is that what happened? Because Michelle the Villainess is rather coy about how it is that she just happened to wake up with a giant black eye one morning: “Oh my goodness! I just happened to wake up with a giant black eyeball! How could this have happened? I mean, aside from my punching myself in the face a la Tyler Durden so as to get some sympathy from Wombat… HOWEVER, because of this mysterious black eye, I certainly deserve a one-on-one date, YES?”

Chris Harrison and his grandpa cardigan appear out of nowhere to explain to the ladies the rules with the one-on-one dates and the group dates yet again, and everyone humors him, because, oh, Grandpa… Alas for Michelle the Villainess, the first individual date goes to Chantal O. (“How deep is your love?” indeed.), making that whole business of punching herself “in her sleep” all for naught.

Michelle the Villainess is determined to get some milage out of this whole black-eye thing, however, and points it out to anyone who will sit still long enough to listen. All of the girls admit they wish they had been the ones to deliver said black eye, because she’s terrible.

Finally, Wombat arrives via helicopter to spirit Chantal away from the black eyes and the hoo-ha. Wombat spends some time patting himself on the back for his awesomeness, what with the helicopter and creative dates, and NO, WOMBAT. NO, SIR. You did not 1. Come up with the idea to take your date on a helicopter ride, nor did you 2. Pay for this date involving a helicopter ride. This is what producers do, not dim-witted reality show contestants. QUIT TRYING TO TAKE CREDIT, WOMBAT.

And off to Catalina Island they go, which is merely 22 miles off the coast of California, and not in some foreign country as Chantal and Wombat keep trying to describe it. The next part of the date that Wombat had no part in planning, involves walking around underwater while wearing a giant goofy submarine helmet. Chantal has a bit of a freak-out: something to do with panic attacks and water and deep-seated fears and terror and then she puts on the stupid helmet and plods around 15 feet under water and then pats herself on the back because love = putting on a dumb submarine helmet and stomping all over some kelp.

Back at the Hen House, the group date list is delivered: Sad Ashley, Stacey, Lindsey, Some Blond Who Is Reading the List, Meghan, Alli and her Ba-Donk-a-Donk, Lisa, Dr. Tube Socks, and Jackie. They are instructed to “put their love on the line.” Michelle the Villainess is THRILLED to not be on the group date and then she threatens to give Wombat a black eye if she isn’t chosen for a one-on-one date. And the Fight Club parallels begin to move from the humorous to the disturbing.

Wombat’s date with Chantal ends on the beach with wine and tiki torches and uncomfortable questions about her previous marriage. But all goes well, and Chantal finds herself in possession of that coveted individual date rose.

Symbolic rain falls on the Hen House as Michelle the Villainess weeps bitter tears over how she’s not sleeping, and how she’s beating herself up in her sleep and how if Chantal comes home with a rose WHAT WILL THAT SAY ABOUT MICHELLE THE VILLAINESS???!!?! Dude, I know you’re The Villainess of the season, but come on, let’s bring it down a notch or two, Crazypants.

Time for the group date: a stretch Hummer arrives to drive the ladies to the Dr. Drew radio studio for a taping of “Loveline.” Never heard of “Loveline?” NEVER FEAR, AMERICA. The ladies are here to explain to you that “Loveline” is a radio talk show where Dr. Drew answers relationship questions. Thanks for clearing up that very complicated plot point, ladies! Wombat ventures in alone with Dr. Drew and his monkey sidekick as the ladies pound drinks in the observation room. GOOD PLAN, GIRLS.

When the womenfolk are allowed into the studio, Dr. Drew asks them if they are attracted to Wombat. OH YES, they all say, OF COURSE WE ARE, they all assert, THIS IS ALL VERY SERIOUS. WE ARE HERE FOR SERIOUS LOVE BUSINESS. Dr. Drew then asks Wombat if he’s ever cheated (Uh, no, obvs), and then extends the question to the ladies. They all lie and vigorously shake their heads no, except for Stacey who is forthcoming about the fact that she cheated on her college boyfriend. While the rest of the girls purse their lips and shake their heads in disapproval, Wombat makes some wombatty noises about how Stacey is being honest and how impressed he is and how he totally isn’t going to dump her trampy self during the next rose ceremony. Nope.

Obligatory hot tub sequence! Wombat brings the ladies to his Rooster perch, where they all strip into their bikinis and begin pecking each other in the eyeballs. Dr. Tube Socks is feeling particularly insecure, and acting all crazy in the hot tub, but not in a sexy Cinemaxy-kinda way.

Back at the Hen House, the next individual date card is on its way and Michelle the Villainess has already promised that if she doesn’t get the one-on-one date, she’s going to punch someone (not herself) in the eyeball. Fortunately, for the safety of everyone’s else’s eyeballs, she receives it, but the other girls point out that her invite — “Let’s hang out together,” — doesn’t say anything about “love” like the rest of the invites. And now Michelle the Villainess is going to punch all of your mothers in the eyeballs, ladies, so well done.

During the group date, the ladies are losing their cool over who will receive the group date rose. Dr. Tube Socks, based on her condescending finger-wagging in another woman’s face, specifically appears to have snapped and to have had her share of chardonnay already. The sad thing is, Wombat was going to give Dr. Tube Socks the group date rose, but Dr. Tube Socks spends so much time yammering about not being able to let her guard down out of fear of being hurt or something, that in the end Wombat gives the rose to some other blonde whose name I can’t be bothered to remember, but who is considerably less irritating.

The next morning, the group date ladies are STILL talking about how Dr. Tube Socks messed up and didn’t get the rose that was OBVIOUSLY hers, all the while, Michelle the Villainess paints her nails and glares. You see, it’s HER DAY. And everyone else in the house is supposed to pack their suitcases and/or be writing apology letters to Michelle the Villainess for wasting Wombat’s and her time for the past couple weeks. BUT INSTEAD, they’re all chirping about Dr. Tube Socks and her relationship with Wombat. BUT THEN! To make matters worse! Wombat arrives at the house and immediately asks to speak to Dr. Tube Socks alone. ON MICHELLE THE VILLAINESS’ TIME!! CAN! YOU! IMAGINE?! Wombat and Dr. Tube Socks go outside, and after a bunch of “WOMBAT LIKE YOU” assurances from Wombat, Dr. Tube Socks is calmed, and Wombat can take Michelle the Villainess on her date before she starts giving out black eyes out of boredom/fury.

Wombat drives Michelle the Villainess over to the Rooster perch where a helicopter picks them up and spirits them to downtown L.A. and onto the top of a skyscraper. Which they have to rappel down. Michelle the Villainess is less than amused, but after some hyperventilating and some eye-blacking, she agrees to do it. Blah blah blah, they rappel down the side of the building under the watching eyes of dozens of crew members and insurance agents and GUESS WHAT? They make it down perfectly safely.THANK GOODNESS. The two of them then get into a pool, because of course they do, and talk about her daughter and how Michelle the Villainess doesn’t think that any of the other women are right for him. And this doesn’t set off any alarm bells in Wombat’s big dense head, because he’s very very dumb. Which is also the reason he gives her a rose. On account of the dumbness. (Well, that and the producers threatening to shut down the whole operation if he doesn’t keep her around until at least the hometown visits.)

Therapy session. Long story short: Wombat’s therapist urges him to get intimate with as many women as possible. A++++ THERAPY!

Cocktail party time! Shawntel takes Wombat aside and announces that her throwing herself into his arms while he catches her is their “thing.” Soon after, Meghan clomps over and is told by Wombat that he likes that she doesn’t need to validate herself by dancing around half-dressed in the hot tub. ONE OF THESE LADIES WILL RECEIVE A ROSE! WHO DO YOU THINK IT WILL BE? Check your answers at the bottom of the entry!

Wombat takes Saint Emily aside for a private little picnic, which is not only awkward and unnatural, but sets into motion great hair-pulling and teeth-gnashing by the other women. Mostly by Chantal, who relives her divorce all over again in that brief moment.

Rose ceremony! Chantal O. (despite her completely ridiculous and unnecessary freak out), Michelle the Villainess, and Some Blonde all already have roses.

Rose #1: Sad Ashley
Rose #2: Alli and her ba-donk-a-donk
Rose #3: Saint Emily
Rose #4: Shawntel N.
Rose #5: Lisa
Rose #6: Jackie
Rose #7: Marissa
Rose #8: Despite it all, Dr. Tube Socks

Meghan and her I-don’t-need-to-validate-myself-half-naked-in-the-hot-tub self take the elimination in stride, clodding off towards the limo in her not!maternity dress.

Stacey, on the other hand, seems to have lost the bottom half of her dress, but is also not dissolving into a mess of tears and eyeliner, so good for her.

Lindsey is the only contestant who weeps, while trying to hold her head high and convince, if only herself, that her daddy will be proud of her. Oh, Lindsey, whatever gets you through the night, honey.

The Bachelor airs on Mondays at 7 p.m. on ABC. And you should think seriously about getting some therapy.

This post originally appeared on the Hearst site Chron.com.

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