‘Bachelor Pad’: Hanging on by a thread

Bachelor Pad
September 12, 2011

Bachelor Pad has only been on for 6 weeks. That is not a very long time! However, when you consider that I’ve been imprisoned in the hellscape that is the Bachelor universe since January 3rd, I think you can appreciate how relieved I am that we are finally, finally within sight of the end of this nonsense. I am the prisoner on his release day, I’ve got my personal items in hand and I am just waiting for those gates to open. OPEN. OPEN NOW.

Before I can walk through those gates to precious, precious freedom, however, we have to make our way through three hours of crying, glaring, smirking and spandex. So, so much spandex.

Chris Harrison tells the last four couples to pack their bags: they’re headed to Las Vegas to compete for a guaranteed spot in the finals and a chance for $250,000. Kasey explains that he had a dream and everything he predicted in this dream has come true so far. Now he just needs to dream that he wins the money and ta-da! DONE. WIN.

The couples are taken to the Cirque de Soleil Ka theater at the MGM Grand, where a giant wall emerges from the stage, spinning and twisting and generally terrifying the contestants. 2001apes-thumb-510x245-39088Chris Harrison steps from the fog machined cloud of fog and explains that the contestants will be strapped into harnesses and forced to dance on the wall. They have 24 hours to learn a choreographed routine and perform it in front of a panel of judges who will be judging them on their performance, technical ability, effort and chemistry. The team that wins goes to the finals. BUT. ALSO. The judges will determine the worst team as well, and they will be sent home immediately.

The contestants ruminate on this: Holly hopes that she and Michael are on the same page despite her tramping around with Blake right under his nose; Michelle the Villainess thinks this looks impossible; Kasey wonders how they do this; Ella is a single mom.

We learn it is a one minute performance, 50 seconds of which is choreographed by a bunch of snotty Frenchmen, leaving 10 seconds for the couples to improvise. We then spend an inordinate amount of time watching the teams learn the routine, which literally is them walking on the floor. That’s it: just walking next to each other. I HOPE THEY CAN MASTER THIS ROUTINE IN TIME! The couples also discuss their freestyle element and while everyone else just agree to spin around or something, Kasey and Vienna have a stupid fight over Kasey’s stupid suggestion that they make a stupid heart with their bodies. So, so stupid.

Practicing on the wall proves more difficult, and Michelle the Villainess threatens to throw up, while Graham explains that he is literally peeing his pants. Literally, Graham? Are you literally peeing your pants? Because if you are literally peeing your pants, I think perhaps you should see a doctor about that. I happen to be related to a couple urologists whose numbers I could give you.

Ella, like Graham, is terrified, and worried that she can’t trust the harness and what happens if it breaks and leaves her son parentless, BECAUSE SHE’S A SINGLE MOM, Y’ALL.

Kasey thinks his rapier wit and whip-smart intelligence will win this. Vienna, however, thinks that her innate gracefulness will be the key to winning.

They are both so terrible.

PUT ON YOUR SPANDEX UNITARDS AND SEX HARNESSES, EVERYONE! IT’S TIME TO SEE WHAT YOU’RE MADE OF, QUITE LITERALLY. The teams, in ridiculous and painfully revealing spandex suits, arrive at the theater and learn that their judges will be the only people in the Bachelor universe to ever have sustained successful relationships: Trista, Jason Mesnick and Ali. serious-businessAnd if you look closely, you can see the tiny electrodes the Bachelor producers put under their skin, emitting little jolts of electricity as warnings lest they consider making a run for it. Chris Harrison reminds the judges that this is SERIOUS BUSINESS, and the judges tighten their lips and nod seriously.

Michelle the Villainess and Graham perform first, flatly announcing that they are going to play up the chemistry thing, because they’ve got nothing else. Their timing is off, they have no grasp of the choreography which consists entirely of “walking” and their improvisational move is some dumb handshake which I’m not entirely convinced they managed to do correctly.

Ella and Some Blond Guy are next, and I don’t know if you know this, y’all, but Ella is a single mom. But aside from being a single mom, which she totally is, Ella also has no idea how to function her harness controller, and she and Some Blond Guy do a terrible, terrible job.

Kasey and Vienna, loathe though I am to admit it, do a very good, athletic job, ending in some sort of dramatic pose. And finally, Michael and Holly do their routine, adding some big spins and twists and generally just nailing it.

The judges commend Kasey and Vienna on their passion, and Holly and Michael for their technical skills, while taking Ella and Some Blond Guy to task for their lack of showmanship and Michelle the Villainess and Graham for their stupid, stupid handshake. In the end, the judges reward Holly and Michael the position in the finals, and send Ella and Some Blond Guy to the Limos of Failure. IN THEIR SPANDEX SUITS. While the limos drive aimlessly around Las Vegas, Some Blond Guy kinda shrugs and says “Thems the breaks,” while Ella sobs and sobs and sobs and sobs and is a single mother and sobs and sobs. So, do they get to keep those unitards?

Holly and Michael, having won the challenge, also win the chance to choose who, between Kasey and Vienna, and Michelle the Villainess and Graham, will go to the finals with them. They allow Kasey and Vienna the chance to make their case first, which consists of Kasey getting all worked up and in Holly and Michael’s faces and aggressively assuring them that they are resigned to taking second place. This is not a terrible argument, actually, but as soon as Michael and Holly leave, Vienna starts berating Kasey for being too forceful and loud. He heads outside for a pout, and Vienna follows to harass him some more for being an oaf, because he’s a giant dumb oaf.

Michael and Holly then approach Michelle the Villainess and Graham to tell them that they are pretty sure they have a better chance of winning by going up against Kasey and Vienna, because no doy. Graham, however, appears to have had a few glasses of something brown and begins stomping and gritting his teeth and bellowing about how he thought he and Michael were brothers and how this isn’t about money it’s about friendship and how he’d give Michael his share of the winnings if it were so important to him and how this is not how he operates and how he is 100 percent mad. 100% PHYSICALLY MAD. Michelle the Villainess sighs.

Driveway Rose Ceremony Time!

Michael and a ridiculously dressed Holly WHO NEEDS TO PUT SOME CLOTHES ON, come out and yammer about how this game can be played either selfishly or selflessly. The selfish decision would be to bring Kasey and Vienna to the finals with them, and the selfless decision would be to go with Michelle the Villainess and Graham. And after all, everyone should remember this is a game. And so, with that in mind, they’re going to do the stupid selfless thing and offer Michelle the Villainess and Graham the final roses. OH SNIZZNAP, KASEY AND VIENNA. YOU ARE GOING HOME ABOUT 5 WEEKS TOO LATE.

Kasey and Vienna climb into the Limo of Defeat and sob and protest that there is no loyalty and everyone is a backstabber and they got rid of Kasey and Vienna the first chance they could get and what Michael and Holly did was the most selfish thing that ever selfished, because Kasey and Vienna have as much self-awareness as a couple of dimwitted poodles.


We then move along to the Whomevers Tell All stage where Chris Harrison welcomes us and a remarkably enthusiastic crowd to the finale. All the housemates are back: Alli and her ba-donk-a-donk, whom I barely remembered being in the house; Some Blond Guy, Gia, Ella, Justin, Fivehead, Jackie, William, Broom Hilda, Erica, Blake, Kasey, Vienna and Captain Jake. Chris Harrison barely lets them settle into their seats before he begins harassing a stricken-looking Jackie and Ames about their relationship and what went wrong. For those of you with a bit of dignity and an immunity to gossip, the story is that shortly after leaving Bachelor Pad with Jackie, Fivehead dumped her like a bad habit. Jackie clearly doesn’t have any idea what she did wrong, and Fivehead doesn’t have any reasonable explanation other than, “Uh, yeah, sorry, dude.”

Chris Harrison turns  his attention to Jake and his time in the house. Jake explains that he was never on Bachelor Pad for the money, but, rather, to try to extend an olive branch to Vienna. Chris Harrison points out that it was clear that Vienna wanted to take his metaphoric olive branch and do something untoward with it to Jake. Vienna rolls her eyes and shakes her head and protests that she was never not nice to Jake, but no one, including the entire studio audience, is having it BECAUSE COME ON. Jake then joins Chris Harrison in the irritatingly so-called “hot seat” for a montage of his greatest hits in the house, while Vienna and Kasey cringe and smirk and glare. Jake admits that he had a bad moment during the televised breakup and that he regrets speaking to Vienna so harshly, which is why he wanted to come to Bachelor Pad: to show America and Vienna who he really is. In response, Vienna claims she played charades with Jake once in the house, and he fell off a chair. See? It wasn’t always hostile between them!

Wait, what?

Vienna then tries to claim that she resented the fact that Jake didn’t try to apologize to her in the year following their breakup. This leads to some pointless and boring bickering over whether or not he called or emailed her and whether or not Vienna had a monetary motive to refuse Jake’s apology. (Yes, probably.) Vienna rolls her eyes some more. Chris Harrison points out that Jake was very very very dumb for giving Vienna a rose that first week, and everyone nods in agreement. Yes, so very dumb. Finally, Kasey extends an apology for being a meat-headed jackwood to Jake, and Jake accepts his apology, thus concluding, hopefully, the Jake Pavelka portion of my life.

Hey, you know what time it is? IT’S GUARD AND PROTECT TIME. Kasey finds his way in the “hot seat,” where he covers his eyes as all his ridiculous rabid gorilla behavior in Bachelor Pad is played, for laffs. Kasey, red-eyed and faced with his terrible terribleness, says that he doesn’t want to be the guy in those clips, that he doesn’t see a healthy relationship, and furthermore, doesn’t want to be in that relationship. And the poor clod, he seems genuinely contrite and miserable.

Vienna, however, is not so easily broken, and she makes — GASP! — a good point: in real life, people don’t watch clips of and relive their fights with their loved ones. People get emotional, they say and do things that they don’t mean, and being faced to confront them again, in front of America, this would be difficult for anyone. Of course, participating in a reality show is a CHOICE, so there are limits to my sympathy.

Chris Harrison wishes them the best, but is clearly pessimistic, obviously.

Blake is cattle-prodded into the “hot seat” where Chris Harrison grills him over how he treated Bellatrix Lastrange. Blake admits that he mishandled the situation, but what are you gonna do? Melissa claims that he told her they were serendipitous AND HOW COULD HE SAY THAT ABOUT SOMEONE HE DIDN’T CARE ABOUT? YOU DON’T JUST GO THROWING AROUND A WORD LIKE “SERENDIPITOUS” UNLESS YOU WANT A GIRL TO THINK YOU CARE ABOUT HER. Looks like I have another word to add to my “Dictionary for Reality Show Contestants,” because I’m pretty sure “serendipitous” doesn’t mean what Maleficent thinks it means. Jadis then complains that maybe if Blake had just TOLD HER he wanted to be platonic, they TOTALLY COULD HAVE BEEN PLATONIC. SHE IS NOT CRAZY. SHE IS ONLY REALITY SHOW CRAZY. YOU DON’T KNOW. YOU DON’T KNOW HER, CHRIS HARRISON.

That bit of insanity out of the way, Chris Harrison gets to what we all want to know: Yes, Blake does brush his teeth for two straight minutes, don’t you? Holly. 1. They are in love. 2. Holly is moving out to South Carolina to be with him. 3. Jackie is still very sad about Fivehead. You can not know the depths of Jackie’s sadness about Fivehead because they are unfathomable.

BUT WAIT! THERE’S MORE! ROLL THE TAPE. Blake and Holly are on a picnic somewhere, and Blake is talking about how much he loves her before he drops to a knee, busts out the Neil Lane diamond ring (of course) and asks her to marry him. She accepts while making these irritating little yips and yay they are so happy happy happy. But you know who isn’t happy? Jackie.

And here’s where my DVR stopped taping and why this entry is so late today. (shakes fist at DVR)

The final four contestants are herded out onto the stage to great applause. And the moment they sits down, Chris Harrison is all, O HAI EVERYONE. Hey! Michael! So have you heard about Blake and Holly? Holly looks stunned and quietly says that he doesnt’ know yet, and Michael is all, “Know what? That they’re moving to South Carolina together?” Holly says that yes, they are, but also, ha ha they’re engaged. SORRY NO TELL YOU. Michael looks as though he’s been punched repeatedly in the head and staggers around mumbling inanities for a while. Holly and Blake offer that it just happened on Sunday as some sort of explanation for why no one told him until now. Because on Sunday we were all transported to a pre-Internet, pre-telephone age? On Sunday it suddenly became 1875 again? To his enormous credit, Michael does not scream this at Holly, but instead wishes her happiness. Chris Harrison marvels at his resolve and respect, because Chris Harrison has spent the last 9 years surrounded by the black, vacuous souls of reality whores, and Michael’s behavior is singularly unrecognizable.

Michelle the Villainess’s turn! Apparently her father died a few weeks ago, and Graham was a good man who stood by her through the trauma of it all. They are close, sorta. As close as two people who knew one another on a reality show for a few weeks and now live clear across the country from each other can be.

Chris Harrison then allows the other contestants to ask a few questions before they vote.

Justin asks what Holly did to earn her place here tonight. Michael rises to her defense and claims that she was super-awesome in the Vegas competition and he never doubted her as a partner.

Erica explains that she’s having trouble because she loves what Michelle the Villainess wants to do with the prize money, but really thinks that Michael was the best competitor overall. Michelle the Villainess then begins shrieking at everyone to not give her a pity vote BECAUSE SHE WILL NOT HAVE IT. Graham adds that their strategy was to stay out of the dramaz in the house, which is why they are here tonight.

Which brings us to Blake’s question for Graham: is avoidance really an admirable strategy? Graham is all, Yeah, whatever, I know who you’re voting for, shut up.

Kasey wants to know why Holly and Michael think they deserve the money and Michael refuses to answer the question, because shove it, Kasey.

With that, Chris Harrison orders the contestants to cast their ballots for who deserves the money the most and should move onto the next round. WAIT, WHAT? NEXT ROUND? WHAT DO YOU MEAN, “NEXT ROUND?” SHALL THIS NIGHTMARE NEVER END?

  • Jake: Holly & Michael
  • Vienna: Michelle the Villainess & Graham
  • Kasey: Michelle the Villainess & Graham
  • Blake: Holly & Michael
  • Erica: Holly & Michael
  • Morgan La Fey: Michelle the Villainess & Graham
  • William: Michelle the Villainess & Graham
  • Jackie: Holly & Michael
  • Fivehead: Holly & Michael
  • Justin: Holly & Michael
  • Ella: Holly & Michael
  • Gia: Holly & Michael

Which means Holly & Michael move on to the final round, which is a complicated shell game of trust. Basically, Holly and Michael are separated and they have to decide independently if they want to share the prize or keep it for themselves. If they both say share, they split the $250,000. If one decides to share and the other decides to keep it, the keeper takes the entire pot. However, if they are both greedy bastards, and choose to keep the money for themselves, the pot is split amongst the losing losers. Holly and Michael are escorted off the stage by some dudes for some unexplained reason? And while Holly and Michael sit around in some dressing rooms, staring blankly past the cameras, the producers try VERY HARD to milk some drama out of the fact that they clearly and deliberately chose to blindside Michael with Holly’s engagement to Blake moments before sending him in to decide whether to share this prize with her.

Finally, they return to the stage, escorted by the Stage Bodyguards, of course. Chris Harrison asks how their deliberation time was, and Holly makes a bunch of noise about how much Michael deserves this prize. Michael, however, takes a dig at how he happens to know how expensive weddings are, so who knows how Holly voted? MEOW.

Before revealing her decision, Holly explains that she and Michael have gone through so much in the past two years and he deserves the money, therefore she chose SHARE, because she’s not a monster.

Michael explains that they agreed to be partners before they arrived on Bachelor Pad, and while he’s SUPER HURT RIGHT NOW, she’s his teammate, and always will be: SHARE.

The end! Hooray! Except, nope. Instead we spend a good 10 minutes talking to our next Bachelor, Ben the Wine Dude, who is still mopey and still in desperate need of a haircut. Also, his dad is still dead which he’s still pretty sad about.

But not as sad as Jackie. No one is as sad as Jackie.

FREE AT LAST! I’M FREE AT LAST! NO MORE FANTASY SUITES, NO MORE ROSES, NO MORE EYE HERPES. FREEDOM! Wait, what? January 2? You’re telling me I’m back here on January 2? So this this is just a furlough, is what you’re saying. FINE. I’LL BE BACK. You won’t defeat me, Ben the Wine Dude. You won’t defeat me. But know that I am going to appreciate every single blissful moment between RIGHT NOW and January 2. TRUST.

Bachelor Pad airs 7 p.m. Mondays on ABC. Make sure you are current on all of your shots before viewing.

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

One thought on “‘Bachelor Pad’: Hanging on by a thread

Leave a Reply