July 8, 2013
Load up the dwindling manherd, we’re headed to Madiera, a tiny island that is clearly off the coast of Morocco, but is somehow part of Portugal. Colonialism, FTW. (Of course, the same argument could be made about Hawaii, but how’d we get into some sort of geopolitical argument while talking about The Bachelorette? I don’t want to fight. Let’s not fight.) The point is, the island is very, very beautiful and very, very far from everywhere else on the planet. So far away! Maybe we can just, I don’t know, leave everyone involved there and sneak out the back? That includes you, Harrison.
I do have to note that as Princess Desiree and the manherd arrive to the island on some sort of 18th century shipping vessel on which they clearly sailed all the way from Barcelona, they are all oohing and ahhing over how gorgeous the island is, and one of the manapes says, and I quote:
BUT I DON’T KNOW WHICH ONE IT WAS BECAUSE IT IS A WIDE SHOT AND I CAN NOT IDENTIFY THESE WAXED APES BY VOICE ALONE AND JUST BLARG!!!1! BECAUSE THIS WOULD HAVE CHANGED EVERYTHING. IF I HAD I KNOWN WHO SAID THIS, I WOULD SUDDENLY HAVE A NEW FAVORITE AND I WOULD HAVE ROOTED FOR HIM AND ACTUALLY CARED IF HE WON OR WAS SENT HOME OR HUMILIATED IN FRONT OF HIS WHOLE FAMILY BUT INSTEAD I AM JUST LEFT KNOWING THAT ONE OF THESE FIVE DUMMIES ACTUALLY HAS GOOD TASTE IN COMEDY, BUT I’LL NEVER KNOW WHICH ONE.
Or, one of them has a toddler’s command of grammar, which is more likely the case.
Anyway. The plan for Madiera is: three 1-on-1 dates, one 2-on-1 date. The only pre-ceremony rose is on the 2-on-1 date, but the non-berosed does not have to pack his bags and get the hell out, at least not right at that moment. Also, this is the last date before the Dreaded Hometowns, so everyone burbles meaningless nonsense about how much they want one of the 1-on-1 dates, and how this is a Very Important Week.
Conning a free vacation out of The Producers To help her prepare for this round of dates, Princess Desiree meets with some of her fellow captives from Dallas’ Sean’s season: New Age Girl (Dallas Sean’s “winner”), Scarlett O’Hara, and Lipstick (Who? Exactly.) New Age Girl burbles about how happy she and Dallas Sean are, and what a “whirlwind” it’s been and how the two of them are best best best friends. None of this appears to be true. Also, Dallas Sean wishes Princes Desiree good luck, sure he does.
Princess Desiree proceeds to describe the five remaining manapes to the women thusly:
- Big Pun: Supportive
- Mumbles: Polite
- Wilford Brimley: Smart
- Nipples Jr.: Reflective
- Drew, Not Brandon: Sweet
The manapes are then cattle-proded out to the pool for inspection, and the women begin peppering Princess Desiree with more specific questions:
- Best Kisser: Drew, Not Brandon
- Best Body: Drew, Not Brandon
- Best Eyes: Mumbles
- Most Adventurous: Nipples Jr.
- Biggest Manappendage: Big Pun
Well look at that, we have a winner, folks! Send the rest of them home and let’s call it a night!
But, instead we go on the first of the 1-on-1 dates with Mumbles. The two fold themselves into what appears to be a Smart Car and proceed to stall traffic around the island as they putter up the side of the mountain. Mumbles mumbles about how important his family is to him, how a hometown date would be a Really Big Deal, and that while he likes Princess Desiree, he’s not sure if he like likes her.
At some point, they pull themselves out of the Smart Car to take in the view for which they have to stand on the veryveryveryedge of a cliff giving me heart palpitations. GET AWAY FROM THE EDGE OF THAT CLIFF, YOU NITWITS. THAT IS A DANGEROUS CLIFF. Instead they say “oh gosh!” about 30 times before returning to their hamster ball and resuming their slow roll up the mountain. Eventually, they reach some sort of summit that is just barely above the clouds where they proceed to picnic, talk endlessly about the view, use the expression “on cloud 9” about twelvlevty times and overtalk about the state of their relationship, such that there is one.
That evening, they have dinner on terra firma, where Mumbles becomes inexplicably red-faced and weepy at the mere thought of his family? Because he’s close to his family? And I guess he’s not positive about bringing Princess Desiree home to meet his family? I am not sure what is happening here, but if I were Princess Desiree, I’d be running for the cliffs and far away from this indecisive nonsense. Instead, he reluctantly invites her to meet the Mumble Parents, and she seems thrilled instead of mildly to strongly insulted that it took so long for him to arrive at this point.
While Princess Desiree and Mumbles are busy laboriously shoving the expression “being on Cloud 9” into their conversation, the next date card is lowered into the manape enclosure: “Big Pun: Let’s sea if we can find love here, Princess Des.” Big Pun declares himself excited to learn what the use of the word “sea” could possibly mean in the date card. Which just on the face of it is an incredibly stupid thing to say — YOU ARE ON AN ISLAND, DUDE, WHAT DO YOU THINK IT’S GOING TO MEAN? — but additionally, this brainiac fancies himself something of a wordsmith and poet and yet he can’t figure out the easiest, most 2nd grade-level pun?
BUT WHATEVER. IT’S A BOAT, DUM-DUM. YOU’RE GOING ON A BOAT. And so they board a boat and put on their bathing suits and rub each other with suntan lotion while jabbering about their strong physical attraction to one another.
They disembark onto a nearby deserted island where they talk about how their friends would describe them (Big Pun: “Romantic”; Princess Desiree: “Mysterious.” Somehow, I think they are both wildly inaccurate.). The Producers, because they think Big Pun’s and Princess Desiree’s poetry is as hilarious as we do, then have the two draft a letter to put in a bottle to throw into the ocean. “Experiences we have together keep the memories close to heart, so that with time, our love never parts. No matter the distance or hours away, know that I am out there, somewhere, thinking of you. Just as the waves crashes the shore, I long for the day I am with you evermore. [sic all over the place]”
And then Princess Des makes this face when she remembers that poetry that doesn’t fancy itself free verse is supposed to at least pretend to have rhythm and meter; that even in poetry, verb agreement matters; and that “heart” does not actually rhyme with “parts.”
And then they inflict this terrible, terrible, not good poetry on the ocean, the end.
That night they go to dinner where Big Pun has big plans to declare his love for Princess Desiree, presumably in arhythmic poetic form. But first, they discuss how many kids Princess Desiree wants (3, maybe 4), whether Big Pun’s family will like her (yes), and the last person Princess Desiree introduced to her family (high school boyfriend). Because apparently she had some sort of PTSD following her Bachelor hometown visit and has blacked the entire experience out? I don’t blame you, honey, but that happened! Bringing Dallas Sean home to meet our family was definitely a thing that happened! Also, sounds like you and your brother probably have some more work left to do in family therapy.
Finally, it’s time for Big Pun’s “poetic” reveal, “Individually Defined.”
The strongest word with so much meaning
Hard to say without a stammer
But when expressed with true feeling
Sincere, for no other word can mean so much more
Like the time we had atop the hotel 17 above
Feelings had changed and were oh so real
Meant to be is how I feel
Our hearts are open, words expressed by you
Feelings I know are so true
I look forward to the unknown
Appreciate the emotion you have shown
And I am also hopeful to see if in your heart I have found a home
Expressed through writing and felt through touch
Enjoy this moment and embrace this rush
The strongest word with so much meaning
Not so hard to believe it’s true
Our hearts are open and in every kiss
I truly mean “I love you.”
SOMEONE ALERT THE NORTON ANTHOLOGY OF LITERATURE TO MAKE SOME ROOM.
While Big Pun humiliates himself and the English language to my stunned bemusement/horror, the manapes receive the next date card: “Wilford Brimley: Let’s have fun in Funchal, Princess Desiree.”
The next day, the two of them wander around Funchal, do a little shopping, sit in a weird park, and careen through the streets of Funchal in what appears to be a laundry basket steered by gondoliers, I don’t even know what is happening here.
At dinner, Wilford Brimley decides to sob story, and reveals that he hasn’t had a relationship with his father since his dad refused to help his mother with Wilford Brimley’s medical bills once he was diagnosed with the diahbeetus. He also tells her about the girl he moved in with after knowing her for all of a week who later posted pictures of herself with another dude on Facebook, thereby breaking Wilford Brimley’s diabetic little heart. “Oh, that’s too bad. Ready to go home?” replies Princess Desiree.
While Princess Desiree suffered through The Most Boringest Date Ever, Nipples Jr. and Drew, Not Brandon receive the final date card: “Manapes: I’m looking for a man to make my heart race. Princess Des.” We are reminded, again, that just because it’s a 2-on-1 date and just because there is a rose to be won, this is not an automatic You Get The Hell Out Date for the loser who doesn’t get the rose. So be cool.
And I suppose because there is only so much to be done on Madeira once you’ve sat on the cloud mountain and ridden in the laundry baskets, Princess Desiree takes the manapes to a go-kart track and makes them race for an unspecified prize. Race, race, race, and Nipples Jr. wins.
Drew, Not Brandon, however, performs all of his interviews thusly:
So Drew, Not Brandon clearly won the Cool Guy trophy.
The Unspecified Prize turns out to be the first time alone with Princess Desiree, where Nipples Jr. presents Princess Desiree with — OH YAY! — original artwork:
Princess Desiree then takes Drew, Not Brandon aside for a private chat where he talks about his severely mentally disabled sister before blurting out that he’s falling in love with Princess Desiree. This, plus the fact that he didn’t assault her with a feeble attempt at art, earns him the date rose.
Dates over! Let’s go cut someone!
But before we can send
Wilford Brimley someone packing, Chris Harrison summons Princess Desiree for a little sit down to chat about the status of her feelings. Princess Desiree reveals that she thinks Drew, Not Brandon is the best looking guy she’s ever met, but that she is in love with Mumbles. DO WHAT NOW? YOU’VE PICKED ALREADY? SO CAN WE GO HOME? asks Chris Harrison. But then Princess Desiree announces that she is also probably maybe in love with Big Pun. So Chris Harrison heaves a big sigh and tells her that it’s time to eliminate Wilford Brimley someone already, let’s go.
Rose #1: Mumbles, obviously
Rose #2: Big Pun, obviously
Rose #3: Nipples Jr., not quite as obviously, but still pretty obviously
Sorry, Cocoon, but it’s time to pack up your blood sugar monitor and …
Sadly for him, Wilford Brimley was the only person who didn’t see this coming, and in the Limo of Loneliness he calls his mother to cry about how he doesn’t understand why he keeps getting dumped, but perhaps the answer to that particular question lies in the fact that he is on the phone with his mother crying about being dumped. It’s like a mobius strip of undateability!
The Dreaded Hometown visits next week, chickens. Prepare your awkward teenaged siblings for their close-ups, manapes.
The Bachelorette airs Mondays at 7 p.m. on ABC.
This post originally appeared on the Hearst site Chron.com.