So...cheers! Let the games begin.
Hey, did you know this installment of the Bachelorette was being filmed in Charlotte, North Carolina? I neglected to mention this last time, which is maybe why ABC has decided to mention it to me 85,000 times in this episode. Emily meets up with some of her soccer mom friends. She is super nervous about her date tonight, she tells them. Just be yourself, they say. Yawn.
Back at the manse, Chris tells all the dudes the rules of the game, like all these aspiring actors don't already know. The camera pans over the dudes' worried, hungover faces and I recognize exactly no one. Maybe I should just give up on telling these guys apart.
And the first date goes to...puffy hair Ryan! Wait, I know who that is. Good call, Emily. "Kalon" is upset. Tough luck, "Kalon".
Emily comes to pick up Ryan, and all the dudes are hanging out by the pool, which is the perfect opportunity for some gratuitous ab shots. Screenshotted for your pleasure:
Emily isn't sure about Ryan because he is incredibly good-looking, and Brad was good-looking and we know how that turned out. Yes, and Ryan and Brad also have many other things in common! Like they both have hair, and a nose, and two eyes! Clearly Ryan is not to be trusted.
In the car, Ryan wonders if his date will involve cliff-diving or bridge-jumping or helicopters. It is much worse than that. Ryan's date is...wait for it...baking cookies! Ryan pretends to be excited. Ryan is not very good at pretending.
After the thrill of cookie baking comes the thrill of cookie delivery! The cookies are for Ricki's soccer team. Emily makes Ryan wait in the car, because she is very protective of her daughter and only wants her to be seen by the ABC camera crew.
Ryan likes this date, because it's like, real, or something, and now they are going to Chuck E. Cheese. Just kidding! Now they are going to get dressed to the nines and probably have a private concert, because being real is boring.
Speaking of boring...this date. Soooo dull. Ryan could like, see himself in Emily's life, or something. And then they go to a private concert, but I barely care, except to feel vaguely smug about having JUST TOLD YOU, because this show is like the Show That Cried Private Concert, and having a private concert is about as boring by now as ziplining or cliff diving. Oh, and at some point Ryan and his puffy hair get the date rose. I'm sleepy.
A bunch more of these guys whose names I can't be bothered to remember are selected to do some sort of theatrical performance, for Emily's benefit and the audience's utter mortification. No one can sing, no one can dance, the so-called comics' jokes are terrible, and head injury Charlie nearly has a nervous breakdown. It is only saved, somewhat, by the appearance of the Muppets. Not kidding, the Muppets. First I was happy, like, omg, someone on screen I like! Even if it is a stuffed frog. Then I was sad that the muppets have allowed themselves to be sullied by this terrible, terrible show, and then I saw Chris sitting in the balcony, playing one of the old curmudgeons who comment on things, and it was great because it was like the show was making a joke at its own expense and admitting that Chris Harrison is sort of worthless, and I was happy again. But only kind of.
Then Ricki was there, and they called her up on stage to SING WITH THE MUPPETS, only in her case it was more like 'nod shyly along with the Muppets', and Emily said this is a moment that Ricki will remember her whole life and all the dudes just about peed themselves because Emily is SUCH A GOOD MOM. Which, honestly, I think all the Ricki stuff on the show is kind of backfiring for me. I know it's supposed to remind us that Emily is sweet and caring and deep and wonderful, but it just ends up reminding me that she repeatedly allowed her daughter to be on this crapheap show. Eh.
At the post-Muppet-show wrap party, Emily confronts Anthony Michael Jef. She's not sure he likes her. He hasn't talked to her enough. He makes her nervous. "I feel awkward. I feel like I'm in middle school." Maybe that's because you're dating a guy who rides a skateboard. But then! Jef and Emily have this really great conversation, which I can't understand because it's edited all weird. But you can tell it must have been good because they both pronounce it the Best Talk Ever, and all is forgiven. Jef seems unusually lucid, and I realize it is because he is not drunk, and then I realize why this show is better with girls.
Back at the manse, it is raining, which is like a symbol of my despair that this show is not even half over yet, and a DATE CARD ARRIVES. Another reason this show is better with girls? Girls are way better at pretending to be excited about stuff like this. The date card is for manic Joe, and he is THRILLED, EXCITED, PUMPED.
Back at the WRAP PARTY, Emily is slow dancing with DJ 90s, who looks...greasy. I gotta give this woman credit, she doesn't seem the least bit grossed out by him, which is a feat of acting or graciousness or both. Or maybe it's a sign that she doesn't like any of these chumps and is just biding her time. Head injury Charlie is unimpressed by DJ 90s' dance moves and leads the other dudes downstairs to mock him, while "Kalon" remains in his chair, ensconced in a white cardigan of superiority. He is Better Than This. I don't know if anyone on a reality show should be able to use that argument.
"Kalon" goes downstairs to cut in on DJ 90s, who looks angry and murderous and even more greasy. Emily tells "Kalon" that she was worried about where he was and why he wasn't talking to her, which I'm calling bullshit on because wasn't that pretty much exactly what she said to Jef? Kalon isn't used to having to compete for women, because back home, when he sees a pretty girl he just goes and talks to her, because apparently "Kalon" is some kind of god among men. Science teacher Aaron comes to steal Emily, and "Kalon" asks for "just two more minutes". Which is TOTALLY AGAINST THE RULES.
I'm pretty sure "Kalon" is going to get TONS of shit for this. Sure enough..."Kalon" goes to cry his tears on the sensitive shoulder of Anthony Michael Jef, while an increasingly drunk and belligerent DJ 90s tries to pick a fight with him. All the other guys look bored as hell, because this is stupid. Seriously, I think the guy on the far right might be about to fall asleep.
And the date rose goes to...Anthony Michael Jef! I think I'm starting to like him. Jealous Chris is jealous. Lightning flashes behind some roses. Yawn.
Joe date time! Emily thinks Joe looks like Matthew McConaughey, which might be a sign that she has no idea who Matthew McConaughey is. They go to the Greenbriar, in West Virginia. It is Fancy.
Back at the Manse! Seattle Doug asks the guys if they are ready to step into a father role, and points out that this is a Big Responsibility. He and Tony (also a single dad), he says, are the only ones who can truly understand this. "Kalon" points out, accurately if obnoxiously, that both Tony and Seattle Doug left their kids...to go on a reality show. Immediately the mood darkens. OH NO YOU DIDN'T. It's never good for this show to be too self-aware.
Seattle Doug is all like, "do you think I put being a dad on hold to be on this show? Come get a piece of me!", completely ignoring the fact that this is totally true. "Do you think Emily put being a mom on hold to be on this show?" asks Seattle Doug. Oooooh. Kalon sputters. Everyone feels awkward.
It is dinnertime at the Greenbriar. Emily likes Joe but she thinks there is 'no spark'. Kiss of death. Emily asks Joe where he wants to be in five years. Joe wants to be...happy. This is groundbreaking stuff. He is ready to start a life with her. "What does that mean?" asks Emily. Joe is ready to pack up and follow her wherever she goes. Then they put wishes in a magic love-clock. The clock will make your wishes come true? Or something. Joe's wish is to come back here with Emily and Ricki. Emily's wish sounds like a fortune-cookie fortune. Something about being hopeful and confident. Just when I think the Joe date is going to turn a corner, Emily tells Joe that she doesn't see him in her life. Joe drives away as Emily leans over a balcony, which is a classic Bachelor metaphor for deep emotional distress.
Cocktail party time! Time for some serious fast-forwarding. Race car Arie loves children. Emily tells him he makes her nervous. Hasn't she said that to every man here? Add Nervous to the list of drinking-game words and you are golden. And by 'golden', I mean, don't operate any heavy machinery.
Single dad Tony goes to steal Emily from puffy hair Ryan. But! Puffy hair Ryan has written Emily a love note. A super long one. Like, seven pages. Front and back. Ryan insists that Emily read the whole damn thing while Tony is there watching. It is awful.
Tony finally gets his day in the sun. He needs to tell Emily that he has a kid, because that will guarantee him at least one more episode. "Kalon" has some one-on-one time with Emily. Everyone hates Kalon. John WOLF, who we have not heard from all episode, tells us that if you have Louis Vuitton luggage, and you're a dude, you're a bleeeep. Hey, chill out, dude. "Kalon" is a 'luxury brands advisor'. Having Louis Vuitton luggage is practically his JOB.
Floppy hair Michael looks hot with his hair pulled back. Here's Chris. Party's over! Emily has to send two guys home, and she really does not know who to cut. I can think of a few.
At the rose ceremony: Emily: "Tonight was an interesting night. I know how long these nights can be." Me too, Emily. Me too.
Roses go to:
-race car Arie
-floppy hair Michael
-Sean the tall pink blonde from Dallas
-angry Seattle Doug
-Travis (but where is the egg? I see NO EGG. does the egg have a babysitter?)
-single dad Tony
-head injury Charlie
And the final rose (thanks, Chris) goes to...
DJ 90s. Emily has terrible taste.
Science teacher Aaron and his Mies Van der Rohe glasses are terribly disappointed. I have no idea who Kyle is, but Kyle is also disappointed. Getting your heart broken, he says, is "the worst feeling in the world". Notice that he doesn't say he has just gotten his heart broken. I see your tricks, editing monkeys.
Next up: Emily and race car Arie make out on a carousel! Emily meets Dolly Parton and displays way more emotion than she has with any of the guys. But then..things get dramatic. Lightning strikes. Emily BREAKS THE EGG. No joke. She BREAKS THE EGG. This is SERIOUS. Don't miss it.