‘The Bachelorette’: At last.

The Bachelorette: Ashley and J.P.’s Wedding
December 16, 2012

Dearly Beloved, we are gathered together here in glow of the television – and in the face of this company which includes multitudes of failed Bachelor and Bachelorette contestants and the two other couples we managed to shove down the aisle – to join together this man and this tube sock enthusiast in holy matrimony, which is commended to be honorable among all men; and therefore – is not by any – to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly or on a cable network  – but reverently, discreetly, advisedly and solemnly and on a network special. Into this television estate these two persons present now come to be joined. If any person can show just cause why they may not be joined together – let them speak now or forever hold their peace (EXCEPT FOR YOU, TATTOOS, YOU JUST SIT DOWN AND KEEP YOUR YAP SHUT).

Yes, it’s true, Dr. Tube Socks and J.P. managed somehow to stay together long after the cameras and trips to Asia and Chris Harrison went away, and they decided that they really, truly, no, for reals, wanted to get married — something that after 24 combined seasons of these shows, only one other Bachelorette and one other Bachelor* couple have ever done. (There have also been some Bachelor Pad contestants who got married but so what who cares.) So, this is a big deal! Sorta! In any event, ABC is going to act like it’s a big deal because they have to be invested in the conceit that these walking abs and bleached teeth can find love by taking a bunch of helicopter rides and going bungee jumping while cameras film their every move, otherwise what are we even doing here? what is the point? and other questions that lead us down an existential rabbit hole. And we can’t have that. We mustn’t have that. So crack open the box wine and get comfortable because we’ve got two hours of ring shopping and dog cape selecting to get through.

Marriage is the union of husband and wife in heart, body and mind. It is intended for their mutual joy – and for the help and comfort given on another in prosperity and adversity and probably some sort of large cash payout by ABC if they go through with getting married, I’m just guessing here. But more importantly – it is a means through which a stable and loving environment and future guest appearances on The Bachelor and Bachelorette and Bachelor Pad as the “stable married ones” may be attained.

The special begins with Chris Harrison at the wedding site insisting at us that this is VERY IMPORTANT and VERY SPECIAL and reminding us of Dr. Tube Sock’s and J.P.’s “fairy tale” romance, as workers furiously shove roses into arrangements behind him. This leads to a montage of scenes from Dr. Tube Sock’s and J.P.’s courtship during her season of The Bachelorette, from which this memorable moment was not included:

bachelorette underwater camera no thank you

Dr. Tube Socks then explains that after the show finished taping, she moved back to Philly, and J.P. moved back to New York, but then they decided to split the difference and now they live in Princeton, N.J.  with her (their) stupid little purse dog, “Purse Dog.” J.P. and Dr. Tube Socks then wander around an apple orchard, as young couples in love do all the time, while they yammer about how excited they are for the wedding and fairy tales and happiness, and Dr. Tube Socks repeatedly hurls herself at J.P.: Dr. Tube Socks hurls herself at J.P. in the middle of the street; Dr. Tube Socks hurls herself at J.P. from an apple tree; Dr. Tube Socks hurls herself at J.P. in a boat. J.P. fortunately has excellent reflexes and balance.

Dr. Tube Socks and J.P. have their families join them in New York City to announce that they are finally, for reals, no, seriously getting married, and everyone cries. Even Tattoos manages to not be a complete jerkface about it, and toasts her sister and J.P.: “Congratulations, whatever.”

Dr. Tube Socks and J.P. meet with a wedding planner, Mindy, to plan their wedding, which is exactly as interesting as it sounds. Dr. Tube Socks is seeing something in Champagne and Dusty Rose and Purse Dog has to be involved, because you don’t have a purse dog if you don’t intend to dress it up in a stupid outfit and foist it on your wedding guests. J.P.’s and my eyes glaze over because wedding planning, jeebus, who cares.

Dr. Tube Socks and J.P. then retire to some park to have a wine picnic and discuss how lucky they are and reminisce about that one time they took wedding pictures in Taiwan or wherever and all I can focus on is WHERE ARE THESE PARKS THAT ALLOW PUBLIC DRINKING? First of all, FACT: 93% of all picnics in this country take place with Bachelor/Bachelorette camera crews present, but secondly, seriously, what city parks allow people to just pull out a glass of Sauvignon Blanc? Where are these places? (Seriously, I need to know.)

Dr. Tube Socks and J.P. meet with Mindy to look at the tablecloths and flowers and dog veils. (One dog veil was included that cost, and I’m NOT KIDDING, $7,500. A DOG VEIL. THAT COST AS MUCH AS A USED CAR. NO. NOT OK. THIS IS NOT OK! THERE ARE HOMELESS FAMILIES, CHILDREN WHO DON’T KNOW WHERE THEIR NEXT MEAL IS GOING TO COME FROM AND SOMEONE OUT THERE HAS MADE A WEDDING VEIL FOR A DOG THAT COSTS $7,500? I AM HAVING A CRISIS OVER HERE.) After yammering about how every girl wants to see her wedding flowers first (Which, way to generalize, Dr. Tube Socks. This girl has no idea what her wedding flowers looked like, true story.), Dr. Tube Socks gets all verklempt over the party favors (forget-me-not seeds) and the dumb poem that accompanies them. Oy.

Finally, Dr. Tube Socks has her final (reportedly $70,000) dress fitting with her mother, sister and J.P.’s mother, and everyone is all OOOOH, especially when she pulls up her dress to reveal her fancy wedding tube socks pink shoes. J.P. also tries on some tuxedos but who cares.

Chris Harrison then interviews Jason Mesnick and Molly who is pregnant and no, they are not going to tell you what the baby’s sex is, Chris Harrison, quit being so nosy. The real purpose of this interview is to remind everyone that Most Boring Man in the Universe/Anthony Michael Hall Impersonator Dallas Sean will be the next Bachelor starting next month, and that Most Boring Man in the Universe/Anthony Michael Hall Impersonator Dallas Sean has abs. Many many abs.

Dr. Tube Socks, will you have this man to be your husband; to live together in the covenant of marriage? Will you love him, comfort him, honor and keep him, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others including Bentley, be faithful to him as long as you both shall live? “DOT DOT DOT, I will.” J.P., will you have this woman to be your wife; to live together in the covenant of marriage?  Will you love her, comfort her, honor and keep her well stocked in tube socks and hot pants, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, be faithful to her as long as you both shall live? “I will.” Will all of you witnessing these promises, be you former contestants who have nothing better to do than attend a stranger’s wedding, or those of you watching at home drunk on box wine, do all in your power to uphold these two persons in their marriage? “Sure, I guess.”

Oh lord, bachelor/bachelorette party time. The bridal parties go to Scottsdale AZ (the hell?) for their bachelor/ette weekend because I suppose the W hotel there promised to pay for everything in exchange for some sweet, sweet product placement. Dr. Tube Sock’s day involves mimosas and manicures. But not just manicures, the World’s Most Terrifying Manicures that include painting J.P.’s face on her fingernails and big toes. NO THANK YOU GROSS. That evening, the ladies shower Dr. Tube Socks with thongs and then a pole dancer arrives to give Dr. Tube Socks a pole dancing lesson — a lesson that judging by her way around that pole, Dr. Tube Socks apparently does not need. Listen, a girl’s got to pay for dental school somehow.

J.P., meanwhile, has the world’s boringest bachelor party: he drives race cars and then drinks some scotch. It’s no wonder, then, that he calls Dr. Tube Socks and has her meet him downstairs to go ice skating because YAWN.

Oh hey, it’s that Trista person, our first Bachelorette, and her husband Ryan to whom she has been married for 9 years now. Good for them! They are here to make awkward jokes about being old, so very very old, and then remind us again that Dallas Sean will, in fact, be the next Bachelor, abs.

Chris Harrison then reveals that he will be officiating Dr. Tube Sock’s and J.P.’s wedding, because sure. What is more appropriate than having a game show host preside over the most important commitment of your life? But Chris Harrison is taking this VERY VERY SERIOUSLY, Y’ALL. And he has a lot of questions for Dr. Tube Socks and J.P.:

Q: Why on Earth do they want Chris Harrison officiating? (GOOD QUESTION, CHRIS HARRISON.)

A: Blah blah know us both, blah meaningful blah.

Q: Do they understand what marriage and commitment mean? (THAT’S AWFULLY RICH COMING FROM YOU, CHRIS HARRISON.)

A: Yes, duh.

Q: Is there something about Dr. Tube Socks that J.P. doesn’t know, and vice versa?

A: Well, dummy, how do they know what they don’t know?

Q: What makes you talk and worry? Is there any jealousy or doubt?

A: First of all, what is this question? Secondly, no, they are totally cool. Listen, if J.P. can love Dr. Tube Socks despite her disastrous highlights that look like a bad bleach job that is struggling to grow out, they can get through pretty much any adversity.

Q: Have you discussed children? How many you want to have?

A: Yep! We want 2! 1! (glares exchanged, Dr. Tube Socks tightens her mouth)

Q: Welp! Sounds like everything is perfectly fine and in order, I’m sure you’ll work out that whole kid thing, let’s do this!

As Chris Harrison runs off camera, Dr. Tube Socks hurls herself at J.P., and the two discuss how many times they should kiss during the ceremony. Dr. Tube Socks only wants to kiss the one time, while J.P. thinks they should go in for two. CONTROVERSY. I AM GOING TO BE HOLDING MY BREATH UNTIL I KNOW HOW MANY TIMES THEY KISS!!!!1!!!11

As people arrive for the wedding, Chris Harrison interviews our numbingly boring new Bachelor, Dallas Sean. Nothing of interest is discerned.

The morning of the wedding, Dr. Tube Socks and her bridesmaids have ladybrunch and Momma Tube Socks reveals that she found a note Dr. Tube Socks wrote when she was in high school detailing her fantasy adult life: she would be married, and living in Jacksonville, FL, and driving an aqua convertible. IF ONLY.

They all get their hair did, and J.P. sends over a charm bracelet for Dr. Tube Socks, which is a sweet gesture, even though that tooth charm makes it look like something out of the Bloody Face jewelry collection.

“In the Name of ABC, I, J.P., take you, Dr. Tube Socks, to be my wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health and away from the cameras, to love and to cherish, until we are parted by death or by boredom, whichever comes first.  This is my solemn vow.” “In the Name of ABC, I, Dr. Tube Socks, take you, J.P., to be my husband, to have and to hold and appear on subsequent episodes of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until we are parted by death.  This is my solemn vow.” Bless, O ABC, this Neil Lane ring to be a sign of the vows by which this man and this woman have bound themselves to each other. “Dr. Tube Socks, I give you this ring as a symbol of my vow, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honor you, in the Name of ABC.” “J.P., I give you this ring as a symbol of my vow, and with all that I am, and all the tube socks that I have, I honor you, in the Name of ABC.”

Finally, FINALLY, the wedding. We are saved from having to watch all 18 groomsmen and bridesmaids make their way down the aisle (thank you, editing!), and then Dr. Tube Socks walks down the aisle to “I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You,” which is not much of a bridal march, but of Elvis’ recordings, I suppose is the most appropriate (better than, say “Suspicious Minds” or “Nothin’ But a Hound Dog”). As she makes her way to the chuppah, Chris Harrison advises the couple to enjoy this, which, Chris Harrison, that was a genuinely nice gesture! Chris Harrison then yammers about The Bachelorette for a long time, and calls J.P. a serious man which we’ll just have to take his word for, J.P. always seemed like an affable enough guy to me.

The mothers are then brought up to do a traditional Celtic handfasting, and read the blessing, which is truly lovely:

These are the hands that will work alongside yours, and build your first home and plant your first garden.

These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years,

And with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other.

These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind.

These are the hands that will, countless times, wipe the tears from your eyes; tears of sorrow, and tears of joy.

These are the hands that will hold your first child.

These are the hands that will help you hold your family as one.

These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it.

And lastly; these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours,

Still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.

(This might not be exactly the blessing that they read last night — thanks to DVR issues, I wasn’t able to transcribe it. BUT YOU GET THE IDEA.)

J.P. and Dr. Tube Socks then read their own vows to one another, yadda yadda, fate, beautiful person, cherish you, sparkly smile, happiness, wake up every day and fall in love, yadda. And then rings are exchanged and by the power invested in him by television, Chris Harrison declares them husband and wife. And finally our curiosity is sate: They kiss more than twice. They actually kiss a bunch of times, but! TWIST ENDING: we’ll never know exactly how many times, thanks to fancy editing. WELL, THANKS, GUYS. NOW HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO SLEEP AT NIGHT IF I NEVER LEARN HOW MANY TIMES THEY KISSED?

And then there’s the reception and that Jillian girl from Bachelor Pad is very very happy for the wedded couple, and Trista thought Dr. Tube Socks looked stunning, and ruminates on her own mortality, and St. Emily has a sad about her own romantic catastrophes and contemplates just giving up. Weddings! So joyful!

Finally, Chris Harrison introduces Mr. and Mrs. Dr. Rosenbaum-Socks and they have their first dance to some melancholy song about love that does not seem particularly optimistic, but whatever, it’s their wedding, they can dance to whatever song they want to. And with that, Chris Harrison shoves us out of the reception and insists that he will see us again on January 7 with the most boringest Bachelor ever! Stock up on caffeine, chickens!

As for Dr. Rosenbaum-Socks and J.P., congratulations, you two! I’m genuinely happy for you that you made it to the finish line! As an old married woman, my advice is to remember to always be kind to one another, and you can get through pretty much anything. Mazel tov!

Now that Dr. Tube Socks and J.P. have given themselves to each other by solemn vows, with the joining of hands and the giving and receiving of a Neil Lane ring, I pronounce that they are husband and wife, in the Name of ABC. Those whom ABC has joined together let no one, including snarky box wine-drunk bloggers put asunder.

*Although, to get all technical on you, yes, Jason Mesnick married one of the women on his season of The Bachelor, but it was not the woman he proposed to on the show, but rather the runner-up, whom he had rejected only to have a very famous change of heart. So, I don’t know how we count this. I think it’s an asterisk.

The Bachelorette used to air Mondays at 7 p.m. on ABC, and required copious amounts of red wine to get through. But not again until next summer. But The Bachelor and his abs will be back Mondays at 7 p.m. on ABC, and we’ll be all over it, Lord help us.

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

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