‘The Bachelor’: Desperate times call for desperate measures

The Bachelor
February 11, 2019

Last we left our delicate-hearted (and -brained) Bachelor, he had stomped away from a squabble between two women, Carrot Top and Miami Mami, who — perhaps not consciously, but somewhere in the back of their minds — had come to the realization that they were are never going to win this thing and turned their panic and desperation on one another.

Colton returns from his sojourn and announces that he is ready for the rose ceremony and to get rid of these headaches already:

Rose #1: Miss North Carolina
Rose #2: Piggyback Ride
Rose #3: Carp
Rose #4: Red Flag
Rose #5: Empty Gift Box
Rose #6: V-Card
Rose #7: Another NBA Dancer

And so, goodbye, Carrot Top and Miami Mami, you doomed yourselves, ya dummies.

The next day, Colton wanders around shirtless on the beach for a while to gather his thoughts, and to explain that they have since moved the shitshow to Vietnam.

The women arrive at the hotel and after the requisite gushing, they tear into the first date card: “Empty Gift Box: We knead this date. Colton.” I didn’t realize that the Vietnamese were into baking, but that’s why it’s always interesting to be exposed to new cultures on shows like this, right?

Except they aren’t baking anything, they’re receiving massages and mud baths and taking showers together and chewing on each other tongues and all but fucking right there on the massage table which I am certain the masseuses appreciate.

That night at dinner, Colton reveals that his favorite part of his date was the shower.

And then Empty Gift Box reveals her big tragic backstory: her parents got divorced.

No, that’s it. Her parents, like some 30-40% of all American couples, is divorced. And I don’t mean to belittle what is obviously a very painful thing for her or to laugh at the story of how her mother drove her car over her father’s beloved front yard … or maybe I do because let’s be honest, by the time you’re in your twenties, you should be able to recognize that your parents are their own people with their own lives and not everything is about you and get over it.

But whatever, Colton offers her the rose, the end.

Back at the hotel, the heavy scent of desperation hangs thick in the air as the women have done the math and realized that there are only so many (3) one-on-one dates before hometowns. This shit is now or never. If they haven’t gone on a one-on-one yet and they don’t receive one of those precious remaining one-on-ones, they are good and fooked.

And so when the group date card arrives — “Butterflies, Never Been Kissed, Piggyback Ride, Miss North Carolina, V-Card, Miss Alabama, Another NBA Dancer, and Red Flag: Ready to fight for love? Colton.” — and the women realize that Carp has won the coveted one-on-one, it sends some women over the edge, including Another NBA Dancer who is reduced to hot angry tears. “WHY NOT MEEEEEEEEE?” (A good starting place would be because you’re a brunette and if you think I’m being oversimplistic, check out the gallery below of the women who remain after this episode.)

The women are taken someplace to learn vovinam, a Vietnamese martial art, before being strapped into boxing gloves and helmets and forced to smack each other around. It’s deeply satisfying.

If you can’t play the video, I’m very sorry for you, but here are some of the lyrics to give you a sense of what you’re missing:

Real life fighting is awkward
It’s not like movie fighting
Testosterone is rising
But you’re really just grappling and writhing

Oh, real life fighting is awkward
There are no cool sound effects
Punching doesn’t sound like anything
You often hurt yourself
More than you hurt the other guy

Real life fighting is awkward, yeah
Even if you know karate
You have to both agree to use karate
It can’t just be one guy using karate
You gotta’ have some ground rules

Basically, all of the women:

And Colton, the entire time:

That evening, the women — all of them — are in HIGH FREAK OUT MODE.

First, Piggyback Ride takes Colton aside to express her worry and insecurity; then V-Card takes Colton aside to tell him she’s worried and insecure.

While Miss Alabama shows Colton her SWEET KARATE MOVES …

… Another NBA Dancer whines to Piggyback Ride that Colton is being distracted by “girls” (her word not mine) that are pretty and fun (and blonde) and “shiny objects” like Kicky over there and not more substantive and ready for an adult relationship like she is.

When Another NBA Dancer has time with Colton, she basically chews him out for not taking her on a one-on-one, and wonders why he seems to have such an easy relationship with the other women but not her. (BECAUSE YOU’RE A BRUNETTE.) (ALSO BECAUSE HE’S DUMB AND THEY’RE DUMB.) Colton makes some noises about trying to give her what she needs, and this satisfies Another NBA Dancer for the time being.

Red Flag spends her time with Colton calling her mother and talking to her for the first time since she has been released from federal prison. It is the single most transparent attempt to manipulate Colton’s feelings on her part yet. However, it fails to work because OH MY GOD HOW AWKWARD.

Also, Colton, please refrain from calling Red Flag’s mother, “Tina.” I know you’re not Southern, but it’s rude to call an older woman by her first name unless she invites you to do so and she did not.

Another NBA Dancer, she’s had a minute to think, and she’s decided this is actually bullshit, that if he’s attracted to these blithering idiots who aren’t ready for marriage, then he’ll never be attracted to her and she’s gots to go. She returns to Colton and is all, “I’M OUT. DEUCES.”

As he walks her out to the người giúp việc cũ van, Another NBA Dancer warns him that there are some wonderful women still in the running and that he needs to find them and not be distracted by “shiny things.” Like teeth.

Colton returns to the women, explains that Another NBA Dancer self-eliminated, and with that, hands Piggyback Ride the date rose with a shrug.

The next day is Carp’s one-on-one date — not that the other women have much confidence that she’ll be coming back. And in fact, Colton and Carp begin the date by discussing the fact that they have not spent any time together and do not know one another AT ALL. But then they go urchin spearing and then they go out on the town and Carp tells Colton about how she was once engaged to someone she had been dating for 8 years but that they split up because they became “too comfortable” around each other which, uh, hello? THAT’S CALLED MARRIAGE and it’s fanfuckingtastic.

Carp also promises that if she makes it to the end of this, and that if things between them keep growing, and that if he decides to propose, she will probably, maybe, she thinks possibly be ready to get engaged again. This half-hearted and highly conditional reassurance is good enough for our big golden retriever of a Bachelor and he offers her the date rose. SO SUCK IT, OTHER WOMEN.

When they return to the hotel, Red Flag is lying in wait for Colton and marches to his room, explaining with her signature confidence that Colton might not be a virgin anymore after she’s done with him.

Colton happily invites her inside, pours her a glass of wine and is like, “Alright, what’s this all about?” Red Flag begins talking about all the amazing “moments” they’ve had together, like that time they called her mom and that time she told him about her mom and … that’s all of the “moments” I can think of, honestly. But thanks to all these amazing “moments,” she’s falling in love with him.

Colton greets this news with a tight smile and tells her that he “appreciates” her saying this to him but, unfortunately, he doesn’t see himself with her at the end of this, so she should go home now please and thank you.

There’s some fake crying …

fake cry project runway

… and assurances that she’s “incredible” and going to make someone so happy one day. In response, Red Flag hisses that she knows some girls might seem like the “safe choice” but if he chooses them, he won’t be happy in the long run. OUCH. and DAMN.

In her exit interview, there is so much more crying and talking about how no one has ever loved her back and this is why she hasn’t wanted to be in a relationship for a long time, and CHILD, YOU ARE 23 YEARS OLD. A LONG TIME AGO, YOU WERE IN JUNIOR HIGH. CALM YOUR SHIT.

Also, you are going to own Paradise. Paradise won’t know what hit it.

Finally, the rose ceremony and Colton has NO INTEREST in some bullshit cocktail party. There is only one person being sent home tonight anyway, so get in line and let’s get this over with:

Rose #1: Miss Alabama
Rose #2: Miss North Carolina
Rose #3: Butterflies
Rose #4: Never Been Kissed

Which means, goodbye V-Card. Turns out you were right to be insecure and worried.

On her way out, V-Card makes a point of telling Colton that he has a great group of women, but he needs to know some of them aren’t “ready.” As she gets into the người giúp việc cũ van, she urges him to be “smart.” Oh, honey, smart isn’t one of Colton’s lanes.

As for Colton, he’s thoroughly freaked out that this is the third woman this week who has warned him that there are women who aren’t ready to be engaged. He thought Another NBA Dancer was talking about Red Flag, and he doesn’t know who Red Flag was talking about, but she’s already gone home, so to whom is V-Card referring?

Colton walks around in circles for a while, trying to work out this LSAT logic puzzle in his head …


Here are the ladies who were eliminated along with their very not good nicknames:


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Here are the women along with their dumb nicknames who are still “dating” Colton:


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The Bachelor airs Mondays on ABC at 7/8 p.m.

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