Murphy's Blachelor in Paradise Blog: The Finale!

We've reached the end of Paradise. Everyone is still SUPER bummed about the Kirk and Carly breakup. The guys are defeated expecting nothing but overnight dates with rain clouds in bikinis. They're probably not far off. The women hung all of their hopes and beliefs about eternal true love on Kirk and Carly. If they can't make it work, what hope does ANYONE have of finding love?!? Jeeze, you guys, Kirk and Carly were together for, like, a month. It wasn't exactly The Notebook. Also, anyone fooled by the constant running of Tanner saying "I can't give you this rose" is also someone who probably thinks Diogiorno tastes like delivery.

But, everyone is reassessing their relationships going into their final dates. Including Tenley, who we find out has some sort of free-form, stream-of-consciousness dream journal she writes random phrases in like "no expectations," "timing," and "whimsical attachments."

Nick and Sam's date goes about the same as the first. they eat dinner while Nick gushes over how beautiful Sam is and she poorly feigns interest before giving him for toothy smile-kisses. That's good enough for him though! They take up the offer of the Fantasy Suite.

Cassandra is anxious about ruining her relationship with Justin by going all fantasy Suite too early. So, she plays the "good example for my kid" card (also known as the Emily Maynard Defense) and opts for a solo room. The date goes OK though.

Josh and Tenley also have a fine date. Josh is freaked out about how deeply he feels for Tenley, but he feels confident in those feelings. Tenley still wants to be sure. She feels sure, but is she SURE sure? She's sure enough for the Fantasy Suite for now, which I'M sure Josh was fine with.

Jade's mind is still on Carly's breakup with Kirk, but Tanner is all about being the new Kirk and Carly as he takes the initiative. He is first to drop the L-Bomb. Jade reciprocates and they opt for a Fantasy Suite ending.

The next day it's time for the final Rose Ceremony. Chris Harrison explains gravely that today's rose is a legally binding contract that you will marry, have children, and be buried next to the person you give it to. So don't screw around with that serious responsibility because, as Chris says, "There's nothing worse than an empty promise." Oh, you mean like the vast majority of couples make at the end of these shows? (Bachelor couples have a 16% success rate.)

The contestants take a few more minutes of alone time to think things over. Nick is nervous about how Sam feels. Is she taking this as serious as he is or is it just a "summer fling?" I guarantee you it's worse than that, Nick. What's below summer fling? Summer job? It's a paycheck. Josh is totally sure about starting a relationship with Tenley IRL, but she asks him what weekend between now and September will she be able to see him? What's this all about? I know they live in different cities, but who knew Tenley had such a busy end of summer schedule lined up when she got back?

At the Rose Ceremony, Cassandra accepts Justin's rose and vice versa. Nick, of course, gives his rose to Samantha. Surprisingly, she accepts and gives hers to him. My guess is they broke up before they got to the steps out of the resort.

Josh says the only problem he and Tenley are facing right now is they live in different states. Big whoop, he says. What happened in Paradise was unexpected, what happens after might be unexpectedly great too. Tenley says "I like you." Josh restored her hope to have a great love and that a great man is out there to be found, but "Why do you have to live in IDAHO?" Tenley, a San Diegan, says she needs busy-ness, things happening, community and can't live in Joshua's one stoplight town. And, moving won't work because where they are from is such a part of them that if you rip that part away, they won't be the same person the other fell in love with. Wha-? I mean, when Sam and Nick are giving it a shot and you're not you gotta ask yourself if your standards are too high or just how badly you want to go to Restaurant Week.

Finally, after the longest and worst fake-out in Bachelor history, Jade and Tanner are up. The first clue this won't be a normal rose trade, she goes first. Then we get the big payoff after "I can't give you this rose today," because our love is worth more than just a rose or a million roses. Tanner gets down on one knee and proposes (He went to Neil Lane!). I don't get why this franchise has all these rules about when you can hook up and say "love," etc, but on this iteration you don't have to ask permission from the family before proposing.

They walk off into the sunset and it's time to roll the bloopers! They do kind of a Sandlot recap of what everyone is "up to." JJ didn't win back the love he left Paradise for. Ashley I. still crying over Jared, he's still obsessed with Kaitlyn. Kirk is in the Witness Protection Program, haha.

And Jade and Tanner are planning to move in together and are looking forward to their wedding next summer back in ol' Mexico.

Thanks for checking out my Blachelor Blog! See you for Ben H. later this year!

Murphy's Blachelor in Paradise Blog: Episode 11

I'm back! Sorry about the week off. Last Sunday was the VMAs and Monday I was busy. I did catch up though. Chris B. traveled further than anyone ever for an open bar, got drunk and left as soon as possible. Some guy named Jacqueline showed up too and tried to make a huge splash, but ended up just driving Ashley I. to try to get her V-card punched by Jared.

This is the week for the couples to fish or cut bait, and if history is any indication, they'll start dropping like flies.

Like I mentioned, Ashley I. panicked when Jacqueline seemed like she wanted to take Jared on a date and asked Chris for a Fantasy Suite date card, which he gave her. I know what we're all thinking, why doesn't everyone do that all the time? So, Ashley, a 27 year old who talks about S-E-X like a 14 year old, plans to use her body in a last ditch effort to hold on to a guy who has no interest in her at all. Because we all know most guys feel that having sex creates an unbreakable bond between two reality show contestants.

Meanwhile, Juelia is totally in love with Mikey. But, Mikey, who came back to Paradise for a 2nd chance at love, feels like it didn't work and sees Juelia as just a friend. I am shocked that Mikey is not ready to get married to a woman who said 2 words to him. They break up, she leaves.

Jacqueline still has her date card and hates all the guys except Justin. She asks him to go and since there's nothing better to do, he says sure.

Enter Cassandra from JP's season with a date card. She's also into Justin and asks him. He says yes, but he has to drop the Tori Spelling look-a-like (3rd place) he said he'd go on a date with earlier. Jacq's hard bitter shell starts tasting even more bitter and she rails against Cassandra's height and kids, etc. If I were Jacq, I'd be bitter about the generic hard rock soundtrack the producers insist on using in every scene I'm in.

Also, did anyone else notice that sometimes Jacquline's butt was blurred out and sometimes it wasn't. Make up your mind, network censors!

Ashley I. and Jared come back from their date with poker faces on full display. Everyone is worried what doing it will do to the already emotional San Andreas fault that is Ashley I. Mikey hits the nail on the head about the situation when he says the person who takes Ashley I.'s virginity "will be murdered in their sleep."

Seeing that Jacq is not going to use her date card, Nick decides to ask if he can use it to take out Sam. There's something about Sam. The only wrinkle in this plan is Nick eliminated Jacq in Bachelor Pad 3 and kept all the money at the end instead of splitting it with her friend. She's still bitter, duh, and so she's going to make him WORK for it! Oh, man. What kind of evil plan is she going to hatch? He has to be her butler for the rest of BiP? He has to clear her bed of crabs and snakes every night? No, she makes him roll around in the sand for 30 seconds. EVIL GENIUS!

Justin and Cassandra go horseback riding and bond over their kids. A lot is made of how it sucks to be joining the show so late, but that experience actually fits the show better. The sparks that happen after a week don't have time to fade, so how you feel after one week is like, "Sure, let's take this to real life!" vs. people going, "AH! I'm not in love after 3 weeks! What's the point of LIFE?!"

Even though we find out nothing "happened" on their overnight date, Ashley I. is still in love with Jared, but he's not feeling it enough to want to explore their relationship outside of Paradise. Ashley I. asks if that means he's leaving tomorrow. He says he's leaving right now. Good idea. It's either that or wake up with a hot curling iron in his eye. Ashley I. shows us her ugliest cry yet. There's a new snotty element to it. She really is a mental breakdown innovator. Conversely, Jared gets into an SUV and we see a smile of a man contently looking forward to a crabless sleep on a plane.

On Nick and Sam's date they have dinner. The scene in intercut with all of the women hating on Sam for playing all of the guys. Amber says she even expressed interest in Mikey just before her date with Nick. It's pretty obvious Sam is just angling for a rose too. She barely kisses Nick at dinner. The man's lips touched more teeth than anything else.

Back at the beach, Chris "Killjoy" Harrison cancels the cocktail party. Ashley I. drops out before the rose ceremony starts though. Then Kirk gives his rose to Carly, Tanner-Jade, Nick-Sam, Josh-Tenley, Justin-Cassandra. Dan steps up and addresses the crowd. He says nice things about Ashley S. and Amber and then bolts. Mikey calls MacKenzie who would rather leave, so she does. As does Mikey. Those are all the roses, so in addition to the volunteers, we lose Amber, Ashley S., Jacqueline and Chelsea.

The next morning, the resort is noticeably deserted. Each couple gets to go on a Fantasy Suite date. As if the previous night wasn't shocking enough, we learn half of the golden couple, Kirk, is having a tough time holding Carly's heart in his hands and decides to just squeeze. He's been in his own head for the past week, having doubts, just going through the motions. The nail in the coffin? "Last night she talked about having my kids." We're all supposed to feel like Kirk is a bad guy, but keep in mind it's been FIVE WEEKS.

Kirk knows what he has to do and pulls Carly aside for a private conversation... right under a balcony where all the other women can watch, of course. He tells her that he's a little behind her in their relationship... make that "a lot behind." Carly is blindsided and speechless. She runs off to pack and be consoled by Jade and Tenley.

Everyone wants to know why he waited until today instead of telling her as soon as he started feeling this way, last week or whenever. I don't get it either, but no one will let him explain. I take that back. He doesn't explain. If he actually took the time he asked "Can I explain?" to explain, we would know. But, he doesn't so we don't. And because he didn't say anything to stop her, all of the women say it's Kirk's fault she fell so fast in love." That can't be right, can it?

The whole scene puts everyone in a GREAT mood for the finale.

Murphy's Blachelor in Paradise Blog: Episode 8

After Sunday night's episode, everyone is coupled up except Jared, who just broke it off with Ashley I. and Joe, who just got dumped on his birthday by Sam.

Ashley I. sees a kindred spirit in Joe and tries to start a pity party. As it always does, her pity party turns into a cry party. Joe is not feeling it. He could not care less. Not getting sucked into Ashley's spiral of shame is actually the first thing Joe does that I agree with. Ashley goes off to find someone who will indulge her self-pity. I've probably said it before but Ashley I.'s lack of self-confidence is such a self-fulfilling prophecy. She thinks she's such an ugly leper that she jumps headfirst into marriage with any guy that asks what the "I." stands for and then ends up devastated when the guy cuts clean any superficial connection they had. Rinse. Repeat.

A date card shows up with Mikey's name on it. Boring. He picks Juelia. Duh. I guess it makes sense though. The whole point of bringing them back was to see if they could have something "real." They fly off to Guadalajara for a romantic date watching masked Mexican "Luchadore" wrestlers pummel each other. Mikey is in love... with the wrestlers. Juelia might as well not be there. After some playful rough-housing in the ring, Mikey and Juelia get the invitation to stay overnight in their own rooms OR a Fantasy Suite. Juelia asks him if he'd be comfortable in one room. Before she can finish her sentence Mikey says, "OF COURSE! I'm a man." "You have to be a gentleman," Juelia replies. Mikey turns it back down from 10 to 5. "Of course. Yeah. Yes," he calmly backpedals. So she doesn't get slut-shamed by Bachelor Nation, Juelia says she decided on one room because he came all the way back to Paradise for her. So... she owes him? Y'know, what? Let's not analyze it. In the room, things get weird when Juelia dons a Lucha Libre mask. I guess she did notice how into it Mikey was at the fight.

Back at the beach, the guys huddle up to talk smack about Sam with Joe. "She's shady." She's "still trying to throw Joe under the bus." Joe has a new plan though. To BLACKMAIL her into a life together forever! Seriously. This guy's a genius. He tells Sam he has proof that it was her idea for him to use someone to stick around until she got there and what he does with it is up to her. Sam says, "I'm confused." AKA panicking. You can see it in her never-blinking WIDE doe eyes. Joe painting himself as the victim is working as most of the cast has come back around on his side. Sam starts back pedaling. It's not fair Joe took the blame, and so on. But, she's still not taking responsibility.

If his blackmail attempt didn't make it obvious, Joe is still so hung up on Samantha. Josh tells Joe to try another route and apologize to her for all the drama. Joe is so desperate he actually consults Ashley I. for advice. That's like consulting Johnny Weir on what to wear to the Country Music Awards. At first I was giving him the benefit of the doubt, that he might try to manipulate Ashley I. for her rose exactly like he did with Juelia. Even THAT would be smarter than listening to, much less taking relationship advice from Ashley I. But, that's what he does. She tells him that if Sam said she wants a clean slate, he should take that literally and introduce himself like they never met. It ends up as awkward as you'd think. "I'm Joe. What's your name? Where are you from?" Sam just ignores the attempt and it's back to the drawing board. Maybe he should see what Juan Pablo thinks he should do.

Enter Justin, from Kaitlyn's season, with a date card. Like every other guy in Paradise, he's into Sam. He particularly likes that she seems like a good "conversator." No, it's not a word. He likes her and she likes attention so they hit it off. Everyone is worried about Joe's reaction if she accepts Justin's date, which she does. Sam grabs Joe and clarifies that when she said she wanted a clean slate she meant NOT with Joe. But, she's still toying with him, giving him the smallest inkling of false hope to keep him on a leash in the event she needs a rose next week. Tanner hits the nail on the head when he says Sam plays guys like chess with the end game of total destruction. Joe starts spiraling.


Murphy's Blachelor in Paradise Blog: Episode 7

They're not picking up Kaitlyn's format for BiP and starting the episodes with Rose Ceremonies instead of ending with them, are they?

We're plopped back into paradise with JJ talking smack to Joe, which you knew was going to be a non-issue as soon as they ended with it last week. The situation is diffused right away by Jared with a simple, "C'mon." JJ backs down like that hot-headed guy at the bar who tells people to hold him back not because he might actually hurt someone like he is hoping people think, but because he doesn't actually want to get hurt in a fight.

Elsewhere with the Joe-Sam drama (Joemantha?) Joe tells Jorge (the bartender) that Sam knew what he was going to do to stay on the show until he got there, so she knows he's not a bad guy. JJ offers his rose to Juelia, but she turns down the sympathy vote. Sam tells Joe to stop worrying about other people and Joe tells her dealing with the drama is worth it to be with her.

Chris Harrison takes the start of the cocktail party to tell the contestants that he knows there's some drama to work out before the Rose Ceremony. Joe comes clean about initiating pre-show contact with Samantha and she was very anxious about starting a relationship before Paradise. In an interview, Tanner says he knows he's hearing half-truths because he saw text messages Sam sent to Joe about their plan to meet on the show. Joe sort of owns up to his part of the scam, but Sam is defiant, even in Tanner's face when he outright confronts her.

Meanwhile, Ashley I. is feeling unsure about her relationship with Jared so, while wearing what appears to be the Heart of the Sea necklace from Titanic, she pulls him aside. It's awkward between them and Jared's stand-offishness is indicative of how he'd been treating her since their last make out session. Ashley wants to know why they've barely touched since then, and they make out a little. Ashley I. feels a super glue-like connection, naturally and is put at ease.

As the RC edges closer, JJ and Dan appear to be the swing votes. Amber wants Dan's rose after their great date. Tenley tries to talk JJ into saving her friend Juelia. JJ is leaning towards Megan but she hasn't been as into JJ as he'd like since their date.  But, he thinks there still could be potential there so he pulls her aside. She wants to stay in paradise, so she kisses up to him. JJ buys her half-hearted flirting like he's a first-time Hooters customer.

Juelia wants to stay in Paradise but not out of sympathy, which would be to the detriment of someone else being able to find love, so she has to find another way to stay on. She decides to beg for the favor of the God of Paradise, Chris Harrison. She tells him that she was deceived into giving her rose to someone she doesn't like and she wishes she had given it to Mikey, who tried to warn her about Joe's Wrong Reasons. Is there any way to get Mikey back to see if there's a connection. The oracle retreats to consider her request.

At the Rose Ceremony, the boring couples go first. Joshua and Tenley, Jared and Ashley I., Kirk and Carly, Tanner and Jade. Next up is JJ who it seems is picking between Juelia and Megan. In the end he picks... Ashley S.? She almost doesn't accept, but does at JJ's insistence. He addresses the crowd in a never-ending inspirational pouring out of his heart. The whole speech is hilariously underscored by a rousing patriotic fanfare, a rare humorous moment from the producers this season. He says Juelia didn't want a sympathy rose and Ashley S. deserves to find love. He adds that he broke up with someone before he came to Paradise and has just been thinking of her since he got there so he's going to see if he can get her back. "I didn't find love... but I found myself... and all these girls think I'm awesome." At least one of those statements is true.

Moving on, it's Joe and Same, duh. Then Dan is up. Before he hands out his rose he grabs Carly. This is what happens when you couple up so quickly and so intensely right away. You become kind of a resident advisor to the rest of the cast. Dan wants to know if he should save his friend or try to find love. They never really show us what Carly tells him to do, so we don't know if he listened to her when he ends up picking Amber. So, Megan, Juelia and Clare are out.

Clare says she's retiring from the Bachelor life. It makes sense because it seemed girls and guys alike thought 34 was about 5 years past retirement age. Juelia walks out and Joe lets out a sigh of relief with Sam, "It's over." Before she can grab the handle to her car to the airport, though, out steps Mikey. Chris announces that they are both returning to Paradise. To paraphrase Fight Club, "I am Joe's raging bile duct."

The lovers are exhausted, but before bed, a date card shows up. It's for Tanner and Jade who hop a private plane and end up in Tequila at a distillery. Later, they're given the option of keeping the date going. Even if they hated each other at that point, how can you refuse one night in a real bed without the danger of crabs, both the crustacean and insect varieties.

Tanner wants to use the time to make it official between he and Jade. He speaks his mind and tells her he's falling for her. But, he's scared too because it's moving so fast. She is... silent. But, it turns out it's only because she's frightened too about how much she's is falling for him. She says this is real for me and in a very 5th grade move says it's OK for Tanner to call her his girlfriend.

Back on the beach, Nick P. shows up with a date card. I have no idea who he is either but he says he was on season 7 of The Bachelorette. He comes straight out and says he wants to meet Samantha because they talked and texted before the show started and he said if he had a date card he'd pick her and she'd say, "yes." Now we all want to know: How many pre-show dates did Samantha book!? Nick pulls Sam aside and everyone agrees Joe deserves what he gets. But, Sam turns Nick down, which shocks Nick because, as he mentioned, she told him before the show she wanted to meet and date him.

Nick explains the situation to Mikey, who explains THE situation to Nick. By the way, is anyone else absolutely going to VOMIT if we have to get a recap of the Joe-Juelia-Sam drama ONE MORE TIME!? A different character is resetting this soap opera every 10 minutes!

Anyway, Nick realizes she was talking to (at least) two people before the show. So he asks Ashley S. on a date. She accepts and they're off to a private island. Or they would be if Hurricane Carlos wasn't impeding their boat trip. It's a fact the boat captain attempts to explain to the dummies who keep mumbling about not being able to understand Spanish. That would mean something if the guy wasn't speaking better English than we've ever heard out of Nick Viall.

So, Nick and Ashley settle for tequila and massages. Nick has the understatement of the season saying Ashley is a little "out there." She gives him a tequila-soaked rubdown and the producers think it's SUPER funny to splice in B-roll of a crow and put subtitles in making it look like it is telling her to rub his junk. At this point I'm starting to think, best case scenario, one of the show's higher ups is a Furry.

The pair have been drinking all day. Drunk Ashley S., by the way, is no more cogent than sober Ashley S. After some makin' out in the hot tub, she tells Nick she'll be there "as a sister to you." It weirds Nick out, rightly so, and he tries to explain why that is a bad thing to say. I don't think she grasps it.

Back at the beach, Sam has Joe in the palm of her hand. It's his birthday and Joe is acting like a Stage 5 Clinger. Sam tells Joe all this drama surrounding them is giving her doubts about whether or not he's a good guy. She's distancing herself from Joe using the drama that SHE HERSELF created. Sam is an evil genius.

Jared confides in some other dudes that it's not there with Ashley I. and he has to break it off. He pulls her aside and like most dudes would tries to make it look like tearing her heart in two is a favor to her so she can go "experience Paradise." Ashley I. takes the news fine and maturely says she understands... JKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJK!!!!!! She immediately goes into a self-confidence shattering meltdown and unleashes the Ugly Crier. She even calls Kaitlyn and asks, "What did you do to Jared? He can't get over you and it sucks for me!" It's an odd cameo for last year's Bachelorette. Ashley falls back on her ol' "no guy I like ever likes me back!!!!" routine without realizing maybe she gets WAY into every guy she meets WAY faster than she should.

As a last ditch effort to solidify things with Sam, Joe sets up a birthday party for himself. Sam wastes no time breaking it off saying she's, "never had so much drama in her life" and that the variable must be Joe since he's the new thing in her life. Maybe all these people (who THINK they're protecting Sam from getting hurt like Juelia) who say Joe is a bad guy means he IS a bad guy. She says she doesn't want to start a relationship on such a negative foot.

Why Joe didn't just say, "B! This was YOUR IDEA that caused all the drama!" we don't know. He does say it to Josh and mentions that he has evidence he's willing to show everyone that prove she was complicit, even in charge, of the plot. A plot which will thicken in part two of the episode tonight...

Murphy's Blachelor in Paradise Blog: Episode 6

Before the blog gets started, let me say something I should have said in my first blog (and I might have. I forget each episode right after I post): Paradise looks like a nightmare. Not for any reasons Lauren I. stated in her hissy fit panic attack. The whole place is crawling with crabs and bugs and bats and SNAKES and they're in your bed and in your food and in the pool and in your shoes. They're doing a great job of making this awesome Mexican resort look like the last level of Tomb Raider. The only redeeming feature is my new favorite cast member, Jorge the bartender!

We rejoin the action with Juelia and Jade trying to "save" Samantha from Joe and explaining the situation to her. When Samantha starts telling her Joe used her to get a rose, Sam cuts her off and says Joe needs to be in the room if he's going to be talked about. In other words, I don't believe you, but we haven't gotten our story straight yet and he's the better liar. Sam says Juelia's whole deal is "silly." Juelia thinks she had more of a connection with Joe than they actually did. Which is TRUE, but the difference is Joe was knowingly trying to make her feel that way. We all know this. Juelia starts to get suspicious. Why doesn't her good friend Samantha believe her over some guy she "just met." It seems like Juelia makes connections with girlfriends just as fast as with dudes.

We're officially clued into the fact that Sam knows what Joe was up to when she preps him on what Juelia is saying about him. Meanwhile, Tanner and Jared are talking about Joe, aka "Public Enemy #1" and Tanner lets Jared know she's in on the scheme. He tells Jared Joe showed him a screengrab before the show from Sam telling Joe to "do whatever it takes to stay on the island until I get there." 

Jared and Tanner confront Joe and try to get him to admit the game is up. Sam kicks everyone out and starts talking to Joe like there's no where cameras can't go in Paradise. She's exposed as the ringleader twice here. Once when she starts explaining to Joe their next play in the scam. For a second time during an interview when she lies about having contact with Joe before the show.

Elsewhere on the beach, Ashley S. is still dealing with Dan breaking up with her. That's what that was? I thought he was just trying to keep her at arm's length until he could better deal her. Not totally break it off! She's holding out hope that he'll come back around.

Enter Better Deal aka Amber with a date card. She gets high praise from Ashley S. as a great person and friend, which means of course she goes straight for Dan. He's interested, but because he's been one of the lead prosecutor on the Joe case he tells Amber that he has to talk to Ashley S. first. He apologizes to Ashley for ignoring her, etc. Ashley S. unloads on him berating him for not being a man, having poor character. What else can he do but sit there and take it? At least a woman is standing up for herself with some gusto this season!

Oh, yeah. JJ and Megan are on a date. They go jet skiing. These two dum dums are perfect for each other. Megan is attracted to men and JJ loves feeling superior to anything. Case in point, he says, "I like her, even though we're different intellectually." No, you're not.

Back at the beach, Ashley S. is taking the Dan-Amber situation (Danber?) REALLY hard, saying the feeling is like the "pain of death." It's interesting to see an alien experiencing human emotions like this for the first time. She sounds like Spock embracing his human side. She has a pity party with Juelia as they watch everyone else have fun in the water, including Joe and Sam. "Crazy Ashley" makes a comeback as if the producers are insisting that she needs a man to keep her sane. She's probably the smartest person on the show. She talks to birds! CooCoo! Please.

Dan's date with Amber is relatively normal. They kiss at a crowd's insistence. They have dinner. They make out some more. Amber says it's "amazing" and it makes her forget all about however Ashley might be feeling about them.

Joe hasn't been on screen in a few minutes, so we're back to that. JJ sticks his nose in now. Joe sounds like Boomhauer from King of the Hill when he argues and I think he tells JJ he's sick of having to talk to everyone about this and "let it go." Joe does clue us into a bit of behind the scenes action during his argument. Evidently, the contestants give a list of 8 or so former contestants they'd love to meet in Paradise. Not a shocker, but an interesting pulling back of the curtain. Joe lays it out again, I had a connection with Juelia, I had a better connection with Samantha. He's a broken record but he still can't admit it was wrong to mislead Juelia. JJ is smart enough to see Joe has no leg to stand on and continues laying into him. Jared is shocked he's in a situation where he likes JJ better than Joe. Joe's other main argument is that "this has not affected you." Yes, why care about anyone else's feelings in the world, or anyTHING in the world, unless it directly affects me? Another thing Joe doesn't understand. JJ starts steppin' to Joe and bowing up. Will the confrontation turn physical?


One thing we do know from the "cyuming up" tease is that we won't go another episode without seeing Ashley I. cry. yay.

Murphy's Blachelor in Paradise Blog: Episode 5

We join tonight's Rose Ceremony already in progress. Clare is still mid-freak out and Chris Harrison is attempting an exorcism. Clare is upset about being on the show for a third time and finding love on a reality show shows no signs of working. Chris tells her she hasn't given the process a chance to work. He adds that there's no decision to make tonight except who to give your rose to.

The other contestants off no sympathy. The guys find it annoying. Ashley S. says Clare probably feels pathetic because she's SO OLD (34). Even worse, we find out what actually makes Ashley I. happy, the misfortune of people who are not her. She's with Jared and Clare is having a breakdown, "Is everything working out?" she asks, punctuating it with a super-forced maniacal laugh. Her normal mood of self-pity, we know, doesn't look good on Ashley I. Now we know being happy looks worse. I just realized she didn't cry once on this episode.

She gives her rose to Jared. Clare saves JJ. Juelia stupidly gives her rose to Joe. Mikey Jonathan and Michael are sent packing. Joe shows no remorse for lying and conniving to stay on until Samantha shows up, "Rose before bros." Mikey is confused about what just went down, big surprise. Despite her home situation, I don't think anyone can say Juelia doesn't deserve what she gets. Multiple people did everything but bash her on the head with a signed confession from Joe and she still we still totally fooled by him. She's head over heels. "I'd move for him! He'd be a great dad to my daughter!" 

Enter Samantha with a date card. She picks Joe without hesitation and Juelia is blindsided. How did she decide so quickly? She and Joe talked before the show, a fact he lies about when asked about it by the other dudes. The guys try to convince him that he owes an explanation to Juelia about why he's going on a date now with Samantha. What he does instead is flaunt his new relationship in front of her and everyone by holding hands with Samantha as they say goodbye for their date.

The date is a super sexxxy photo shoot for a "Hot Bods" spread in People Magazine. Hey, could Joe say 9 more times that he came on the show to meet Sam because it was 30 seconds since the last time he said it and I'd almost forgotten. The guy makes Nick seem like he barely mentioned why he came on Kaitlyn's season. Joe also says he has a Dad Bod, which cannot be possible because that means my bod is worse than a Dad Bod and I cannot deal with that being true. They smooch in the shower, they smooch in the hot tub. Joe doesn't get why people are upset about him forgetting about Juelia. "I don't care what people think as long as me and Sam work out." It would be a fine outlook IF he didn't make that happen at the expense of the feelings of the widowed single mother. 

But, no one else is considering how Juelia feels either when Joe and Sam get back from the date as they all fawn over the details in front of her. Jared tries to convince Joe again to talk to Juelia. No one can believe he was using her to get a rose. Joe relents and sits down with Juelia. That is, he lets her have her say and then leaves immediately, "OK. 'preciate the time." He then hooks back up with Samantha and they make sure the staff has to drain the hot tub before anyone else gets in.

Pulling the emergency brake on the show is another skit featuring Clare talking to a raccoon, this time "on the phone." I wish Clare "talking to" animals was 1/4 as funny as the producers think we think it is...

Carly is horny. She's ready to take her relationship to the next level, if y'know what I mean (sex). She gets a date card and picks Kirk, duh. Meanwhile, he's panicking about the fast pace of the relationship. Another seemingly solid couple is going through the same thing. Dan says Ashley S. has been an emotional whirlwind. He has a low tolerance for that and the red flag has given him pause about the relationship moving too quickly.

On Carly and Kirk's date he focuses on prying open a door for escape, mostly by saying "like" 20,000 times and trying to get Carly to say she's unsure about the relationship's speed. She's not. Carly calls her brother who happens to be getting married that day in Ireland. When he hears her talk to her family Kirk realizes he's being silly and he's going to ignore his fears about rushing into something and go with his heart. The one-on-one turns into and overnight at the hotel.

Back at the beach, Dan and Ashley S. have essentially the same conversation but with a totally opposite result. Dan says he's starting to see differences in their personalities that may not mesh up. Ashley calls him on it bluntly, "You're saying your feelings changed overnight." Not used to such honesty, Dan backtracks and continues to beat around the bush, "What?! No! I'm just questioning! That's OK, right?!" Ashley S. says she's only here to be with him and she'll leave if he wants her to, if it's not real to him.

Megan, who banged her head against the wall in Chris' motorcycle helmet during his season, shows up. She was previously "lost" in a nearby city. Yes, "lost" with a full camera crew from the show in tow. Dan, who has a thing for crazies, in interested. So is JJ. Megan wakes JJ from a nap (see: passed out) to ask him on a date. He can't tell who he's saying yes to thanks to his bleary eyes and recently regained consciousness, but he says yes.

Meanwhile, everyone is finally putting the pieces together and realizing Joe used Juelia to get a rose and Juelia might be going home this week to her daughter, God forbid. Dan takes it personally that Joe's scheme kept Juelia from seeing her daughter for any more time than would be necessary. He goes to confront Joe who comes clean about talking and texting with Samantha before the show. He admits he knew Sam would be on the show, but still won't admit he played Juelia to stay until she did. He's standing by his story that they had a connection. He's dragged over to talk to Juelia again, but he completely owns the conversation by being super-defensive and unleashing a barrage of lies that no one can even refute because they're so blatantly untrue and he will not listen to reason. Juelia finally plays her trump card saying she'll just ask her good friend Samantha about the situation. Joe crumples like a cheap bumper. He starts apologizing profusely. But, Sam shows up and Juelia calls him out in front of her anyway. Judging from the TO BE CONTINUED tease for tonight's show, it doesn't seem like it will make too much of a difference, but we'll see...

Murphy's Blachelor in Paradise Blog: Episode 4

They could show Tanner 3 times during the stupid 70's style opening credits (which I guess are now an official "thing") and no one would notice. This episode has so many storylines crammed into an hour, by the way, that there's a cut to a new one every few minutes. It made for a really frenetic and oddly paced show.

First Jared and Clare are on their date. Mikey emerges from his sadness hut with a freshly shaved face. He says he used to call his beard "Clare" so he had to get rid of it. That's about how much though Mikey puts into the sour grape sentiments he spews nonstop here. He's still confused as to how he took Clare's rejection speech, "I want to keep things open," as "I want to take things slow with you specifically and no one else." Ashley I. is indulging in the sour grape buffet as well, accusing Clare of using sex appeal to get guys. OH YES, Ashley, guys are normally drawn in by your winning personality and happy-go-lucky attitude, not your side boob, under boob, under butt, over boob, coin slot, pouty lips, empty doll eyes and knowledge of Disney Princesses.

Jared and Clare go sailing to a bungee hump... I mean, bungee jump (why don't I just go back and delete my typo?). Stereotypically, Clare loves a man who can help her get over her fears. They smooch, which "seals the deal" for Clare. Oh, please, Clare. The "H" sound in "hello" when you met every man on the island sealed the deal for them. Clare overplays the scariness of the bungee to latch on to Jared's body like a damn Alien facesucker. Also, the production was forced to CGI purple bikini bottoms onto Clare during the jump. Why not give her the black box of shame like Jillian? Or better yet, why make Jillian's unremarkable butt suffer the indignities of the black box?

Back at the beach, Joe is ignoring Juelia, keeping her at arm's length to get a rose to stick around to meet Samantha. Clare and Jared return and she spills all the juicy details to Carly well within earshot of Ashley I., which gets no reaction at all. JUST KIDDING! She bawls like a shelter puppy!

Tenley, meanwhile, has gone from 0 guys to 3, getting interest from JJ, Joshua and now... Michael from Desiree's season who was hoping to meet Tenley in Paradise and has a date card. To her she's an "Elevenly." No he was not shot on site for making that horrible pun. JJ and Josh both feel threatened, especially when Elevenly accepts Michael's date card.

With Clare on Team Ratface, Mikey tries to finagle a rose from Juelia by telling her Joe's intentions may not be true. He basically assaults her trying to get a kiss but he's shot down on every front as Juelia is pretty focused on Joe.

Michael and Tenley go to dinner in the middle of a pool. He woos her with no delay, calling her his "Plan A" and giving her muchas smoochas while they are serenaded by a mariachi orchestra. I gotta be honest, it really doesn't seem to be just about the rose and the game to this guy.

Back at the beach, seemingly out of nowhere, Jared essentially calls things off with Clare. "We had a great time! I mean, obviously there's questions we have to ask, like you're 8 years older than me. I mean- You look great!" Clare says there's no future with Jared. A rare moment of Clare-ity (I've been shot for that pun).

At the Rose Ceremony, three guys are set to leave Paradise. Before the first cocktail an be poured, Juelia promises her rose to Joe. Jonathan, who grave her a rose last week, grabs her and tells her that Joe is not there for her and he's here for the Wrong Reasons (gasp!). Mikey grabs her next to say the same thing. In a rare well-thought out argument from Mikey, he asks her, "What do you think Joe is going to do next week when he has the rose and all these new women show up?" Juelia's confused and obviously doesn't want to believe them.

She confronts Joe about his intentions, especially after ignoring her after their date. Joe has a perfectly reasonable explanation. "I ignored you because I didn't want to ruin what a great time we had!" OH! You know, that feeling you get when you like someone so much you try to avoid being around them at all costs! Then he grabs her for a quick make out sesh. Afterwards he asks her, "What are my intentions now?" Oh, from that forceful kiss? My guess is to hit and quit it? Juelia buys it though. 

Joe isn't satisfied though. He must have his Southern Justice for what Mikey said about him. "If we were in Kentucky rat nah, I gots a purr of brass knuckles..." Oh, this guy's tough! Tough like a walking internet comment section. Mikey comes over to clear the air. Joe lies to his face about liking Juelia. Mikey buys it and apologizes profusely. If Mikey folded like a house of cards, call Jonathan wet noodle. Joe makes Jonathan tell Juelia he was wrong about Joe. It's humiliating how quickly Jon backed down and how much he cries. Both of the guys were totally played and helped solidify the rose for this season's villain, Joe.

I'm actually, honestly excited for when Samantha shows up. Joe is sitting on a powder keg at a gas pump that he has loaded with so much dynamite... and he's smoking. Joe even brings Jonathan's son into the discussion telling Jon he'll be proud of him for putting it right when he talked badly about someone behind their back, even though what he said is 100% true. That's low.

Elsewhere, Jared goes running back to his only other shot for a rose right now, Ashley I. and she fools herself into thinking he'll have to work for anything from her. A lot of guys like a challenge... and then there's Jared. They share a first kiss and Ashley I. won't stop commenting on it like it's her first ever.

As everyone gathers to line up for the Rose Ceremony, Clare makes a huge speech, crying about how people are here this season to plot and play games and it's not like last season when everyone was there for the Right Reasons and to find love (how'd it work out last season, Clare?). Jade takes offense and addresses Clare at the Rose ceremony saying that everyone is there for love and saying that no one is here this season for love doesn't sit well with her. Clare retorts with, "If the shoe fits, wear it." What!? That doesn't make sense here! You might as well have said "A stitch in time saves nine" or "Lather Rinse Repeat."

The RC gets underway and the boring couples go first, as usual. Carly and Kirk, Ashley S. and Dan, Jade and Tanner (who?). Then there's a shocker: Tenley picks... Josh?! Wow, I had him pulling up the rear in that horse race. Maybe he slipped her some Molly. 

Then, ever the drama queen, Clare runs off. Everyone's annoyed she's made the Rose Ceremony about her. Even Chris is uncharacteristically stern, telling her, "Pull yourself together."

TO BE CONTINUED. Also, next week, Samantha shows up and Joe's true colors are revealed.

Murphy's Blachelor in Paradise Blog: Episode 3

Please stop the 70's style intro credits. I guess it is a good reminder of who is in the current cast, but it isn't funny. I don't think anyone on the show has the capacity to be doing this ironically. 

We get dumped back into paradise just after the first Rose Ceremony of the season. Lauren I. is miserable and freaking out about what a nightmare it is being on an all-expenses paid tropical retreat where the booze flows like wine and there's nothing to do but swim and eat free food. She says maybe if Joshua from last season shows up she'd stick around, but other than that there's no one she likes. Unfortunately for Ashley I. she has to concentrate on her sister's meltdown instead of making time with the guys in paradise. Lauren is searching for any reason to leave the reality show life, however, and makes up a story about how she's in love with a guy back home and she's his "mistress." He's not married, but she still insists she's the "mistress."

It isn't as big of a deal that Ashley makes time for the guys, though, because the women have the roses and the power this week.

Whaddaya know? Joshua shows up with a new haircut and a date card. Ashley snags him right away to sell her sister to him. Tenley is into him too, though. That's awkward because Tenley just got JJ's rose and JJ hates Joshua with a near Shawn-Nick passion. Because it will cause the most drama, Joshua asks Tenley on the date. Lauren starts crying and packing. Ashley starts crying. This show wouldn't be so bad if the I. sisters weren't the world's ugliest criers. Second place: Jon Cryer. Honestly, though, when Ashley I. cries it looks like the Scream mask got lip injections. Lauren drags her suitcase down the beach and into obscurity and no one in paradise cares.

Next to show up is Joe. Are ALL of Kaitlyn's throwaways going to be on BiP or something?! He's got a date card so he sits down to get acquainted with the group. And by "get acquainted" I mean make it super weird. He's set up to be the "funny guy" that's going to have everyone in stitches, but instead he takes a shot at Clare asking her if this is her 8th shot at love and her second time on BiP. 

Clare runs off crying and talks it out with a producer or someone, but the show again shows us the FUNNY by editing in shots of a raccoon to make it look like she's talking to that.

Joe sort of asks Juelia on a date, only because she was the first to speak up when he said, "Who wants to go on the date?" Jonathan is upset because she got his rose last week.

On Joshua and Tenley's date, Tenley is super giggly like a school girl and is amazed by the simplest things Josh mentions. She's way over-complimentary, which most guys would see through. Actually, I take that back. Most guys can't tell when a woman is blowing smoke up their butts. And Tenley's schoolgirl act works wonders. Ooh! Look at your big hands! They go dancing and do a little smooching.

Back at the beach JJ is trashing Joshua saying he has no game and no moves and never gets any women. JJ steals Tenley away as soon as they get back from the date for a "real one-on-one." JJ's mind is put at ease and he doesn't see Joshua as a threat to his relationship with Tenley. Oh, you need proof? "I kissed her SEVERAL TIMES," JJ says and heads to bed to rest easy. Joshua is still up though and he grabs Tenley to kiss her several MORE times.

The next day, or so editing would have us believe, Josh is swimming with some other Paradise dwellers and starts bragging about all of the drugs and partying he does in LA and Vegas. The show makes a quick turn into After School Special territory as all of the poor innocent BiP contestants are SHOCKED at his confessions. They start freaking out and judging and Mikey sees it as his time to shine and save Tenley's life from this drug addled maniac. I'm not a Josh fan, but stop acting like a bunch of goody-two-shoes. If I hear one more of the saints on this island say "I've never done a drug in my life" I'm going to beat them with their own bongs.

Tenley grabs Pablo Escobar AKA Joshua to have the DARE talk. Josh tells her he's not a big partier. Tenley presses him and he remembers "Oh! The Molly!" and gives her the same line he'd give his mom in an After School Special. It was a one-time thing! It was my friend's! It wasn't even mine! Tenley wants to believe him because she felt great chemistry. Wait. Chemistry. Josh didn't slip her anything on their date, did he? That DRUGGIE!

On Joe and Juelia's date they go horseback riding and on a picnic. Juelia is having a great time. Joe looks like he's babysitting his buddy's younger sister. At least he's attempting to make conversation. Maybe he was jet-lagged last night? He asks Juelia questions about her kid, which is obviously the way to her heart. They jump in the water and smooch. She says Joe is definitely getting her rose at this point.

When they get back, Juelia is over the moon. Joe is... jet lagged again? Juelia is completely over Jonathan now and pulls him aside to let him down easy. Joe meanwhile tells a producer Juelia's kinda dumb and she's not the right person. She's also a bad kisser and he just wants the rose so he can stick around long enough to meet Samantha from Chris' season. First of all, what's with the producers being characters this season? Secondly, what's with everyone knowing who is going to be on this season!? What ever happened to surprise!? The producer tells Joe he needs to tell Juelia this. Joe's butt tells the producer "FAAAAAART."

Elsewhere, Dan tries to clue Mikey into a fact that Clare herself told Mikey last week, she's just not that into you. Actually, subtract "just" and "that." Mikey is confused and incredulous. He can't believe someone doesn't think of him the way he thinks of himself or that his perception of reality isn't the same as everyone else's.

Jared gets a date card and Clare and Ashley I. are both hoping he asks them. There's no time for discussion though as Jared immediately turns to Clare and asks her out. Constant-victim Ashley I. goes into meltdown mode. Mikey tries to talk Jared out of taking his girl by pointing out how ancient Clare is (Age 34). Mikey says if Jared asked out his girl in real life he'd fight him or some meathead crap like that. Mikey says he's blindsided by Clare's acceptance of the date. "Maybe I missed something?" Yeah, when she explained in great detail how she wants to date other people and explore all of her options in Paradise. Clare and Mikey get into an argument that will be continued tonight and judging by the preview, everyone wants to leave Paradise.

Murphy's Blachelor in Paradise Blog: Episode 2

I leapt for joy when I realized we will only have an hour of Bachelor in Paradise to watch on Monday night's as ABC is introducing a Talking Dead/Watch What Happens: Live type show this season called After Paradise, about which I will NOT be blogging. Basically, your favorite(?) contestants and ABC stars will talk about what happened on the show this week and answer viewer-submitted questions. Forget blogging, I'm not even WATCHING it.

After some dumb, possibly permanent 70's style opening credits intro, Clare makes her entrance with a date card. She sits down with some other ladies to get the scoop on the group dynamic so far. The girls suggest she go after Dan since everyone else is coupled up. Dan, however, has been at the ER with Ashley S., whose malady still has yet to be disclosed. So, I think I was right in yesterday's blog. Parrot Flu. But, their hospital date went pretty well, which means Clare is stuck with JJ and Mikey, a situation she gives a big thumbs down.

After she talks to a crab about it (playing into when the producers made it look like she was talking to a raccoon last year), Clare sits down with Mikey. She couldn't be less attracted to him, but he's seriously trying to get that date. She eventually relents to his desperate pleas. Her expression is the same one you might have when wracking your brain for an excuse to get out of going to a party for someone you don't like.

The date is partners "tantric" yoga. Mikey is in heaven because he loves touching ladyparts and it gives him a chance to make a ton of awful yoga puns. For instance, his favorite position during the date is "Downward Clare." Yup. That's about as hard as he works coming up with those. I've never seen doing yoga make someone MORE tense, but Clare definitely is.

During some post-yoga hot tubbin', you can smell Mikey's desperation through the TV. "You look great in a bikini! I like you! I want to kiss you! I have a total schoolboy crush on you!" Clare lets him down as easily as possible, which is a bad move when talking to Mr. Can't-Take-A-Hint. Dora the Explorer goes over this guy's head.

She says she's trying to remain open to everything and she wants to get to know everyone better before coupling up. Mikey misses the point like Screech misses being famous. He thinks the date went great and he's excited that Clare said she wants to get to know him better.

Ashley S. gets the next date card and asks Dan on their first official, non-ER date. It goes well. Dan seems surprised he's into Ashley S. but says, "She gets me and I kinda get her." Someone who "kinda" gets her may be the best Ashley S. can hope for.

Back at the beach, Tenley feels more like Fiftley (see: old) and doesn't have a rose. She decides to go after Jared. This of course makes Ashley I. go into meltdown mode. Of course, Ashley I. goes into meltdown mode when she throws something at the garbage can and missed or at most self-check out lines. She can't believe that some old hag (age 31) is stealing her man just like they always do.

But, because Lauren I. accompanied her sister this year on BiP we finally know why Ashley I. has the emotional maturity of a Twilight fanfic author: her sister indulges her cryfests and also tells her she's pretty and good enough and smart enough etc etc. Ashley I. must build up the courage to talk to Ratface and Lauren's solution is the same as any high stress situation like a missed period or a second DUI: SHOTS!

Ashley knocks back a few and steals Jared from that old bag (age 31) Tenley. Jared assures Ashley their date went fine and she's a great girl, but then adds "You never know what's going to happen." He's here to take it slow, take it easy. Ashley I. realizes their relationship is not as solidified as she thought.

At the cocktail party, JJ is relishing the power of having the rose this week like no one will remember he put in no effort to couple up next week when the women hold all the cards. He hit it off with Jillian early and she thinks she has him eating out of the palm of her hand. She doesn't realize it's not that hard to get romantic attention from JJ. He's accepted assumed advances from several mannequins and some vegetables that look like human faces.

So, when Tenley goes after him she realizes he's more playable than an unlocked Donkey Kong arcade game. She lays it on just a little thicker than Jillian in an effort to stick around.

Jared tells the Our Lady of Perpetual Reassurance, Ashley I. that she's a great person. Meanwhile, he's making time with Clare and tells her he wants to explore his options and if she doesn't have a rose when his name is called he'd give his to her. He adds that he wants to spend more time with her regardless of who gets whose rose. Ashley I. is of course very upset that some OTHER old bag (age 33) is after her meean.

At the first rose ceremony, here's how the flowers were doled out:

Tanner - Jade
Kirk - Carly
Dan - Ashley S.
Jonathan - Juelia (who looks pretty rough and whose skin looks like she's trying to match her darker-skinned mate)
Mikey - Clare (who thought she was clear in explain how she felt about him, but evidently forgot he's a meathead who can barely pour his own protein shakes)
Jared - Ashley I. (and Lauren)
JJ is last up and relishes the power and going last and the spotlight. He calls Tenley's name.

So, Jillian packs up her black censor boxes and catches the van to the airport, making sure to read the ol' "Why can't I find love? One day I'll find love" Bachelor boilerplate exit speech they must keep laminated in all of their limos.

Murphy's Blachelor in Paradise Blog: Episode 1

Here we go again with the crying. People on reality shows know that 90% of the time they're crying people at home are laughing at them, right? I mean every so often something genuinely sad happens on a reality show, but most of the time it's something really stupid. With Ashley I. you can make that 100% of the time she's crying. I mean, we are all laughing, right? I'm not some monster, am I?

With no break between the final rose and the first shot, we're thrust back into paradise as a revolving door of money-starved former contestants hope to drunkenly stumble into a free televised wedding. I think the plan is to do Sunday and Monday night shows, which really only makes sense this week as most of this ep is introductions to the cast.

First up is the virgin from Chris' season, Ashley I, who was allowed to bring her hoey sister Lauren. At first you think it's a joke, but no, she really brought her sister. Jared aka Ratface and his patchy beard are back. Pomegranate scholar and cat whisperer from Chris' season Ashley S. is back. She seems a little too self-aware of her empty-eyed, empty-headed schtick, but she should be entertaining. Tanner from last season is back. They do a little skit about how not even Kaitlyn knew he was on her season. Neither do we! In fact, I didn't even recognize him when he was walking down the steps into Paradise. His whole intro package seems to be setting him up to be the "funny" guy?

Also from Chris' season we have one-time Playboy model Jade, Black Box Butt Jillian, who also has new boobs, Juelia who has a kid, and Carly, always the bridesmaid never the bride. Some guy I think named Dan from Des' season as well as Mikey AKA Gorilla Dane Cook. Mikey is hated immediately upon arrival as he promises to get the other puny dudes "jacked" while he's there with bitchin' beach workouts. HE turns the women off with his general alpha male, meathead act. He is the first to remove his shirt, naturally. But, he's also the first in the water with a women as he literally grabs Lauren caveman style and pulls her into the surf. He tries to get a little make out action going but she denies him.

Jonathan from last season shows up and I think he's been taking personality lessons from Ian because he's the WORST, constantly bragging about previous sexual exploits to the audience like your friend in 7th grade that you KNEW was lying about how far he'd been but you couldn't prove it because maybe it really does feel like that?

Finally, Kirk(?) from Ali's season makes the scene as does JJ, who Lauren aptly calls "disgusting."

Chris Harrison comes out and explains the "rules" of Bachelor in Paradise to the cast. Each week the men and women will take turns giving roses to people they want to explore a relationship with. If you don't have a rose, say bye bye to Paradise. This week we lose a lady, next week a dude. Oh and the sisters are a package deal. If you give a rose to one, they both stay. This makes Jonathan happy because he's, like, had sisters, dude, at the same time. He likes sex!

Then all of the contestants are surprised by getting to watch the wedding of Marcus and Lacey from last year's first season of BiP. Y'know, this show may end up having the best record of last couples in the franchise if they keep pairing up dum dums and douchebags.

As night falls, Jade emerges as an early favorite of the guys. I guess once you've already seen the goods, you just have to see them in person. Jade makes the astute observation that if there is a drama gene, the I. family has it because Lauren is already off in a corner crying alone. Her sister comes over to see what's wrong and it seems it's all a bit overwhelming for Lauren. At 24 everyone to her is "so old" and she's freaking out because she hates people. Just in general hates people.

Ashley I. realizes this might mean she's going home early so she has to seal the deal with Ratface, whose features she describes as "perfect." Perfect patchy beard. Perfect beady eyes. Perfect open-rooted incisors, highly specialized for gnawing. But, like most 5th graders and those of the same maturity level, Ashley I. has a tough time talking to guys she actually likes so she pretty much clams up. She perks up and they engage when they start talking about Disney princesses, which she considers a huge save (IT'S NOT). Ratface is also one of the guys totally into Jade.

Meanwhile, Carly and Kirk connect. It's pretty clear they're going to be the boring couple this season that pairs up on the first night and we never see them except at breakfast and rose ceremonies. I hope I'm wrong because I feel like the universe doesn't want Carly to be happy.

As if they are aware of the drama it might cause, the producers give Ashley I. the first date card. Because she has no self-confidence she talks to her sister for 6 hours about the best way to ask out Ratface. She's probably right to be anxious because it's clear that Jared would rather bathe in peppermint oil than go on a date with Ashley I. (rats hate mint, btw. We learned something today!). But, he still agrees to go with her, in the same way you agree to help your friend move when they ask.

Jade is disappointed because she doesn't want Jared to couple up with Ashley I. like he did with Kaitlyn so quickly. (What am I not seeing about this guy?!) The producers keep Jared engaged in the date by letting him off-road through the jungle in a sweet dune buggy type thing. Ashley is psyched because they're a Zodiac match. Genius.

Ashley I. asks Jared about Kaitlyn to see if he's open to love after having his heart broken so recently. Ashley I. thinks it all goes well and things are solidifying.

Ashley S. couples up with a parrot. Tanner (who?) might be into that, but he tells Kirk he's into Jade.

Jade gets the second date card, big surprise. She'd love to ask Jared, but picks Tanner (who?) since Jared went on a date with Ashley that didn't seem to go terribly. At their dinner, Tanner lets Jade know he's totally cool with her nudie shots. Tanner says he feels more of a connection with Jade in one night than his whole time with Kaitlyn. Jade also has a good time. They go swimming in a thunderstorm in their undies.

Back at the beach, an ambulance shows up and loads up Ashley S. possibly with a case of Parrot Flu. Dan goes to check on her and rides along to the hospital.

Then, down the stairs and looking for her 7-8th shot at love, comes Claire. Chris Harrison makes a joke about hew blowing everyone like a hurricane. Claire says Tanner, Kirk and Jared are on her hitlist.


Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: The Finale

This is it. The end of one of the weirdest seasons in The Bachelor franchise to date. And since this is the finale we're treated to plenty of "Live" cut-ins from Chris Harrison telling us the wait is over. Except the wait would REALLY be over if he would stop cutting in! Especially since the fact that he buttons BOTH of his suit buttons made me unreasonably angry.

I have a feeling Kaitlyn at this point feels the way I do after picking my Final Four bracket teams. I make my picks all the way through, I get to the championship game and go, "How the hell did I end up with THESE two?!"

Back in Utah, the guys pack for California and we're reminded that they love Kaitlyn just as much as they hate each other.

In Malibu we meet Kaitlyn's family (again) and PLEASE tell me that's not their real home because it is an amazing new cliff side beach resort house and I'd buy it now if I had the money but I never will. Kaitlyn tells them she is in love with two men. Mom and sis are prejudiced against Nick based on Andi's season and they're concerned Kaitlyn has been blinded by Nick's snake-oil salesmanship (she has). Kaitlyn tries to explain why Nick and Shawn hate each other and describes hooking up with Nick as "Oh, whoops!"

Nick is first up to meet the fam. He's calm and collected until Kaitlyn tells him she told everyone that they hooked up in Dublin. Inside, Nick sits down with Kaitlyn's mom and she says what we're all thinking, that her perception of Nick is that he's "possessive, jealous, arrogant" and asks, "Who are you? Are you surprised you're here?" Nick gives her his stock line that he's not there to be on the show again and he just came because it was Kaitlyn. What does she like about him? Nick says he brings out a vulnerability in her. Nick starts crying and says, "If she'll have me, I want her for the rest of my life." He breaks tradition a little and asks her mom's permission. The whole production totally wins mom over. She says Nick, "showed me his heart" and "I was totally wrong about him."

Unfortunately for Nick, he gives the EXACT same speech to dad, almost verbatim. You can't blame him for scripting out in his head what he wants to say in this very important moment, but you can blame the producers for showing it every time he did it. Dad thinks about it for approximately 30 seconds before giving his approval.

Shawn has a tough act to follow but charms the family immediately. Dad calls his manner of speech "genuine." Mom said her first thought was, "There's a MAN." During some one-on-one time, Mom asks Shawn how he's handled his jealousy about Nick's relationship with Kaitlyn. He tells her he understands the process and gives her what I think is a weak line at best and a red flag at worst. His jealousy proves how strong his feelings are for Kaitlyn. Yes, his negative trait is somehow Kaitlyn's fault! But, he says the show's ups and downs have made them stronger. Mom calls him "mature" and "confident." Kaitlyn's sister tell's K she's Team Shawn because of the way she is around him.

Shawn sits down with Kaitlyn's dad for a brief chat and then brings mom over to ask permission to propose to Kaitlyn. Bringing mom into the equation I'm sure was a move telegraphed to him by the producers. If Nick did it, you'd better do it too. A quick word about Kaitlyn's dad here: after a billion episodes with two marble mouths Kaitlyn's dad's voice is a welcomed change. I want him to do a series of sleep hypnosis/self-esteem boosting tapes in his dulcet tone.

Next is the final dates, which are just landscape shots, a formality. What could change? What could Kaitlyn possibly learn that might sway her one way or the other? Nothing. But, she says she's still looking for that clarity on these last two outings. Nick is up first. In an interview, Kaitlyn says "If Shawn wasn't here it'd be so much easier." Um, DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! Imagine how easy it would've been Kaitlyn if only one guy showed up instead of 27. I could've gone to bed on time tonight! By the way, that's called "Not Dating on a TV Show." It's free to try. You'll be doing it in three months.

After dinner, it's time for the customary giving of gifts. Nick mumbles to Kaitlyn, "Igotyousomethinginmybedroom." It's a double frame with a pic of their first one-on-one date and a poem Nick wrote. Kaitlyn has the same problem every contestant has at this point in the show. She loves the one she's with.

Shawn's date is last. Is going second an advantage or disadvantage? At first it seems like the latter. During lunch at a winery, Kaitlyn is a million miles away. Shawn notices and says in an interview that nothing is different on his end, so what happened yesterday? The day does not go well.

Later at dinner, Shawn is nervous and needs answers. Kaitlyn actually shows up and is much better. She's present. In the moment. Shawn's gift is a jar of keepsakes he's collected from their time together. I think it beats the poem frame.

Kaitlyn still has no idea what she's going to do when it comes down to it, though. Neil Lane makes his overly-botoxed appearance. Much is made of the fact that this is the point a year ago that Nick was booted by Andi. The rings are picked out, which means it's time for the big moment.

I guess Kaitlyn blew the show's budget staying in Ireland for a month so instead of our usual exotic proposal locale, one lucky guy will pop the question at... The Bachelor Pad? Yeah, that's where I'd love to start a new chapter of my life, next to a pool that's half vodka puke and Clint and JJ's Brokeback Hot Tub. Kaitlyn says she needed to take it this far to figure out who she wanted to end up with. Frankly, I'm glad that's one of the parts of the show she's keeping because why are we watching this if not to see a guy get ultimately humiliated? Kicking him to the curb before Neil Lane shows up? No one wants that. Think of Neil, won't you?

So who's first out of the limo? Nick. Big loser, right? Right. He gets all the way through his proposal, takes the Neil Lane ring out of his pocket and... she stops him. His reaction, "No? Alright," is priceless. He's also upset and proves he's a snake by turning short and combative immediately. Kaitlyn tells him she does love him but her heart is with someone else. Nick tells her, "Nothing you say could make me less confused." Then he really starts laying in, telling her, "You took things from me," (Nick was a VIRGIN!? Wait. Andi. What the hell is he talking about?). Speaking of Andi, Nick also subtly slut-shames Kaitlyn by saying his love was "more than just a moment." Yeah! You'll do it with anyone, Kaitlyn, even if you're not in love! Not like Nick! He shuts down any explanation Kaitlyn offers and tells her how she really feels about it, despite what she says about how she feels.

In the Loser Limo, Nick tosses the Neil Lane ring on the ground (No!) and takes off his Irish claddagh ring and tosses it as well. He says he's the "world's biggest joke." The guy even has to be more rejected than anyone else!

Shawn's proposal is typical. In her response, she makes a subtle dig back at Nick saying she made "mistakes" during the show. She finally gets to say "I love you," and accepts her Neil Lane ring.

Stay tuned for my After the Final Rose LIVE blog... starting right now!

Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: After the Final Rose

After the Final rose, it's still all about the final two. Hilariously, Nick's family is in attendance to bask in his shame, even poor Bella, whose grasp of love must be so unbelievably skewed by now we'll see her on this show in about 15 years.

But, Kaitlyn and Shawn are out first and it's the usual happy couple routine. Then they're ushered back off stage and Nick comes out to surprisingly zero "Boo's." CH dwells pretty heavily on Nick and Kaitlyn's pre-show relationship. Seemingly it's to get back in the good graces of Bachelor Nation's red states by showing their sex in Dublin was "not some taboo, first date hook up." Chris really tries to justify the "quick" physical relationship by portraying it as the result of an emotional connection and build up.

Shawn comes out and it is more awkward than I thought it'd be this far removed from the taping. Nick tries to get Shawn to say his name by introducing himself. Shawn doesn't bite. They both cross their outside legs on the tiny couch, so their feet touch several times. They rehash the same reasons for their hated we've heard for the last 6 episodes. Shawn says it wasn't jealousy because Ben H. (who gets a rousing round of applause) also had a strong connection with Kaitlyn, but he and Shawn are actually friends now. Shawn tells Nick he broke an unwritten dude rule on the show and bragged about specifics of your date and "getting intimate" to the other dudes. Nick's response is he got a bad edit and anything bad he did was out of context. Snake. Chris tries to get them to hug. but no dice.

Next Kaitlyn is out to face Nick one more time (she hopes). What answers he'll get now that he didn't get then I have no idea. I guess she has had a few months to think about and strengthen and reword her case. Nick comes out guns blazing and asks her "What were you thinking when you said, 'I love you'?" She tells Nick that she did love him but no love was stronger than the love she had for Shawn. So, what did he mean when he said "You took things from me?" Nick says he meant that Kaitlyn took saying certain words and proposing for the first and last time to the love of his life from him. Nick expounds on this for a while, just hammering on Kaitlyn and trying to make her feel as awful as possible.

If she took it hard, she's got back up now. When asked about future plans, they're non-committal as a lot of couples are at this point of the show. They're just excited to live life without hiding. However, Shawn trembles with rage when he says one thing he's looking forward to is defending his woman from cyber bullying. Even though it was real life bullying, I'm still willing to bet Nick wasn't waiting in the parking lot for him after the show like in Ireland.

There's no rest for Bachelor Nation as we kick right into 4 hours of Bachelor in Paradise per week this Sunday. I hope I can do this.

Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: The Men Tell All

Next week is the big finale, so this week the men will tell all. And all was told if "all" is the same reasons they said  that they're bummed they're not on the show anymore when they got kicked off in the first place. As he always does, Chris Harrison over-promises and under-delivers in his tease. Instead of being just the "most dramatic season in Bachelorette history" he says this season created a "national controversy." Settle down. A woman had sex with a man. Kaitlyn didn't wear a Confederate flag dress or anything.

We get the worst news of the night with an extended preview of Bachelor in Paradise: BiP will be on TWO nights a week starting August 2nd. As if to soften the blow, we're then introduced to the all-telling men in order of exit. So that means, RYAN RETURNS! I hope Chris Harrison's book takes off and he leaves the show so Ryan can be the new host.

After a season recap reel, the guys take on Ian ("Talking about sex is dumb and shallow and I need some SEX!") first, with most saying Kaitlyn deserves an apology. Corey comes to Ian's defense though and says Ian was right about Kaitlyn not being interested in "deep" men. Jared shuts him down immediately, though: "How many weeks were you around?" Mic drop.

Ian stands up and takes his coat off and instead of offering to fight everyone as I was lead to believe in the "cyuming up" tease, he gets on his knees and apologizes to the guys. JJ, the group's other huge attention whore, gets up and shakes his hand. A few guys also give Ian props on the way back to his seat.

Next, CH sets his sights on Clint, who first wants to make sure everyone knows, "I am a straight man" who just developed a deep bro-love with JJ. The other guys say they isolated themselves and didn't care to develop bro-love with anyone else. JJ blames the producers and editing for the portrayal of their relationship, like whenever they were acting weird it was CGI or something. JJ says, yes, they talked for 4-5 hours at a time in the hot tub because they were "intellectually curious" about each other. In the worst word choice of the night, JJ says there was a lot of "meat" to their relationship.

Koopah decides to do Chris' job and changes the subject to the snake in the room: Nick. He says if Kaitlyn wanted to explore a relationship off the show, she should've thought about leaving the show. Josh says she shouldn't have said "I see my husband in this room."

Because he thinks America likes listening to a 12-year old Vineyard Vines spokes model, Chris brings JJ up to sit in the Hot Seat. He says he regrets turning on Clint when Kait kicked him off. About how his relationship with Kaitlyn went south so quickly he says they started with a lot of momentum, then lost it. JJ tears up when Corey calls him a jerk and JJ counters that the guys who stuck around longer warmed up to him. See, the problem, according to JJ, was the the guys weren't smart enough to "Get" his hockey locker room insult humor.

Ben Z. is next up and the producers torture him by making him relive telling a woman who didn't return his love about the worst moment of his life, when his mother broke her back, discovered she had cancer and died. There's not a dry eye in the place, except Ben, who still hasn't cried in 11 years. He says his relationship with Kaitlyn failed because of the walls he put back up after the producers made him take part in a HILARIOUS funeral date. But, he says, being on the show did teach him it's OK to open up to someone in a short amount of time. He seems to be a favorite for next season's Bachelor, but that kind of emotional intelligence and actually LEARNING something from this show kind of precludes him. Also, I can't stand his "Oh, golly? All this noise for li'l ol' me?" scrunchy nose face he makes.

Ratface is up next and we're reminded he introduced himself to the Bachelorettes as "Love Man." How cringey was that? He's not over Kaitlyn, of course, and the Cranberries' song "Linger" has been ruined forever. The best thing about Jared is he's lost the patchy beard, which Chris Harrison points out as a positive.

Ben H., my current favorite for next season's Bachelor, is next up. Since he was the last non-douchebag standing, what kept him from Kaitlyn? He says he stopped pursuing her that night she came to his room and told Shawn he was the one. Even not knowing what was said that night, the confidence Shawn had after that caused him to pull back.

Kaitlyn finally comes out. They first address the "national controversy" and backlash of her hooking up with dudes on TV. She says her family was hurt the most by it. Then something amazing happens. Chris says that horrible things were said about Kaitlyn on social media and he could have just left it at that. But, taking a cue from Jimmy Kimmel perhaps, he starts reading mean tweets about Kaitlyn right in front of her. I know it should have been shocking and appalling and cyberbullying is a real problem but, the funniest thing that's ever happened in the history of this franchise may be Chris Harrison's deadpan faux-newsy delivery of stuff like "Kaitlyn needs to shut her whore mouth. Hashtag-slut." It also kinda sounded like he was reading a children's book. I don't even want to type about it anymore, because it doesn't have any of the comedy that CH lent to it. If you missed it, seek it out. It's hilarious. Also, there was NO reason to do it. We know what cyberbullying is. And if you were trying to shame these people for what they said about Kaitlyn, why block out their handles? Kimmel doesn't. It does garner Kaitlyn a rousing standing O from the audience, though.

During the guys' Q and A, Ben H. asks Kaitlyn why she only felt it necessary to tell Shawn about banging Nick and not anyone else? Kaitlyn says she was treating each relationship differently and she and Shawn were at a place where she thought he had to know.

If it wasn't clear before, it should be clear now, I'm hoping for all the guys, that no one will ever agree on the Nick situation and the guys are never going to understand her reason for bringing Nick on mid-season and if it was fair, etc. etc. Kaitlyn says, "Date this many people and don't make any mistakes and have it televised, I dare you." That's also a way of her finally saying, "It was my show, I'm in charge this is what I wanted to do and I did it."

To round out the show, Ryan M. says he's still horned up, apologizes for being so awesome and finally casts his vote rose for Kaitlyn. Ian, who gave notes to Kaitlyn every week, gets down on his knees to apologize, but gets a weird cramp and stands up to give Kaitlyn a final apology note. Some dummy puts on a pigeon mask.

Blooper reel. Done. All has been told once again.

Next week's episode: "The Lesser of Two Mumblers"

Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: Week 8

I'm back! Sorry I missed blogging last week on vacation. Quick version if the only way you keep up with the show is this blog: Kaitlyn confessed to Shawn that she and Nick got it on. At first he was surprisingly mature about it, but then at the Rose Ceremony he pulled her aside and showed his true jealous colors. Nick trashed talked Shawn to Kaitlyn. His main talking point being that he bragged about being eskimo brothers (look it up) with a country singer.

When last we left the gang, The Gos sought out Nick's hotel room after Nick's overnight and they got into a bro fite. Gos told Nick he's been hated by 40 guys across 2 seasons. Nick again hamers on the fact that he brags about having sex.

We get a reprieve from the drama with Kaitlyn's overnight with Ben H. in Galway. They go horseback riding and are attacked by donkeys with, as Ben says, "sick haircuts." They have a picnic overlooking a castle. Ben tells Kaitlyn starting a life with her souds fun. Kaitlyn says this "could be the beginning of forever" and she could picture a life with Ben. Over dinner, Kaitlyn finds out Ben celebrated his birthday while on the show and he's a few years younger than her. "Do you think of me as an older woman," she asks. Ben says, "No." Really? It's math. He's smart, of course, for not calling her an old bag. They retire to the Fantasy Suite and we see them basking in the after glow the next morning.

Shawn's overnight starts with a round of golf, because what's sexier than golf? I'll tell you. Shawn in a skintight pink polo. It looks like he's wearing shoulder pads underneath. Shawn: Leg Day. Have one. Shawn says Kaitlyn's excellent golf swing is a definite check mark for "wife material." God, they are trying to make this crappy date sound sexy. They take a break on a green to play truth or dare, as is a part of Irish Rules Golf. Shawn picks dare and Kaitlyn makes him strip and putt. We find out disturbingly that he wears some sort of weird compression tights as underwear.

At dinner, Kaitlyn tries again to clear up the Nick v Shawn mess. Shawn tells her he doesn't trust Nick's reasons for coming on the show again. He says the way Nick acted when he confronted him confirmed his suspicions and feelings. Nick's plan works and Kaitlyn asks him about the "eskimo brothers" comment and if he's a player. Shawn dodges and reiterates to Kaitlyn that if she ends up with Nick, he won't lose any sleep because they are such polar opposites he'll know he and Kait were never meant to be. Kaitlyn wants to move the converation off camera so they head to the Fantasy Suite.

The morning after is a LOT less happy and restful and afterglow-y than Nick and Ben's mornings with Kaitlyn were. The producers place Nick in the parking lot on Shawn's walk back to his room. It looks like a high school production of West Side Story. Nick says he wants to respond to Shawn's allegations and have another "man to man" conversation about their differences. Shawn doesn't GAF. He completely steamrolls Nick, who can't get a word in edgewaise. After Shawn says something like, "If you ever talk about me again..." Nick says, "Are you threatening me?" in a cracked voice you might hear during a high school production of West Side Story. He tells the camera Shawn is not a man because of the way he acted during the convo.

Are we going to have enough time this ep to show two hometown visits? It doesn't look like it... Nick is from Wisconsin and Shawn is from Connecticut so we land in... Utah? Nick grabs Kaitlyn before he meets his family at this random hotel and drops the L-bomb, "I'm in love with you."

Nick being on the show again makes everyone in his family cry, except James who is Nick's awesome brother who looks like he's in a New Wave Band. The fam, even precious Bella (remember her?), is worried Nick is too confident about being the last man standing and will be blindsided again like with Andi. Honestly, that has to be what Nick is hoping for. His 15 minutes is extended a few more seconds again AND no hassel of a fake commitment for 3 months.

There's nothing remarkable about Kaitlyn meeting the family. The sisters, brothers and mom all ask the normal questions: What do you love about Nick? How much do you love him? Mom asks Nick, "What do you love about her?" Etc. Etc. There's lots of comparing this situation to just last year with Andi. As usual, the family likes The Bachelorette. Kaitlyn and Nick go to her room to trade eye-rolling cliche sweet nothings and make out.

OK, looks like we're going to squeeze another "hometown" date in here. How crazy is it that Nick and Shawn's family live in the same hotel in Utah? Kait and Gos meet beforehand and Kaitlyn's strategy going into the meeting seems different than with Nick's family. Nick's family grilled Kaitlyn. Kaitlyn seems more interested in doing the grilling with Shawn's family. What was Nick like to live with? Is he ready for marriage?

I don't recall Kaitlyn getting her answers but Shawn's sisters sit down with her and later tell Shawn they approve. As usual on these visits, dad is suspicious of the show, the format, the quick time frame. He grabs Shawn to talk outside. As with all the skeptical parents, dad is eventually talked into believing in the process. After the visit, Shawn tells Kaitlyn he loves her, as he is contractually allowed to do at this point.

Man, as crazy as Kaitlyn's season is, there's certain elements of this formula even she can't throw out.

At the end of it, Kaitlyn is still totally conflicted on who she wants to marry. Kait, you're in Utah. Marry them both!

Next week: The bros tell all.

Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: Week 7

Previously on the Bachelorette: Sex! Also, last time we left our heroine she was being confronted by Shawn, this season's contestant that doesn't understand the concept of the show.

When we rejoin the action he asks her "Are you in love with me?" Case in point. Surely he knows she's not contractually allowed to say anything like that at this point. Her reply is exactly that, "I'm falling in love with you." Shawn doesn't know if he can continue on, seeing Kaitlyn with other men. Kaitlyn says he has to decide that for himself. If only he knew about her and Nick! Kait is concerned that Shawn knows (he doesn't). They make out.

Over and over in this episode Kaitlyn says she doesn't feel guilty about going to Ramtown with Nick, while in the same breath calling what she did a mistake. She does feel guilty about being in other relationships with guys she hasn't;t banged yet. I think? I mean, isn't that the same thing as feeling guilty for hooking up with Nick? Or you feel guilty that the other relationships aren't moving as fast?

We still have a 2-on-1 date from last week to get to with Joe and JJ. They take a boat ride to a picnic. JJ wears his heart on his sleeve. He gushes over Kaitlyn while Joe is there. Joe is more guarded and plays it cool while JJ is there. But alone, he tells Kaitlyn he's "falling in love." JJ's plan on the date is to tell Kaitlyn the "worst of me" and his "biggest regret." It turns out that 3 years ago he cheated on his wife and "lost everything." Anyone surprised? Kaitlyn doesn't seem shocked. "Thank you for telling me. You probably learned a lot from that." He's still learning from it. Don't tell anyone! Back at the blanket, Kaitlyn says bye-bye to JJ. She doesn't say it's because of the cheating thing, but falls back on the "I'd hate to take any more time away from your kid" excuse. Weren't you listening? He only has her half the time! There's no rush!

Joe doesn't get the rose that easily, though. She still makes him go to dinner. He does end up getting the rose because he picked her up when she was feeling down about the whole Shawn/Nick situation. He struts back into dude HQ and The Gos can't even listen to his recap of the date.

Shawn storms out... again... and goes to Kaitlyn's hotel room... again. He says there was more to what he wanted to tell her last night. Kaitlyn is relieved when it's not about Nick. All of Shawn's problems stem from the night in San Antonio when off-camera Kaitlyn told him "You're it." If he's it, what are all these guys still doing here? Kaitlyn tries to do what the producers should have and explain the show to Shawn. This is the process. Giving Shawn that early reassurance, but continuing to explore other relationships makes Shawn question her, which makes her question "us." If he's questioning her motives right now, though, just remember, there's a big Nick-shaped thing he doesn't know!

An hour into the show we finally get to the cocktail party from last week. Kaitlyn enters and says it's been a rough week and she's emotional and nervous. Everyone is wondering why, except Nick and Shawn, of course. Ben H. pulls her aside and says he was around the night she told Shawn... something. He didn't here the conversation, but he knows something was said that gave the Gos big validation. Ben's also having trouble seeing her with other guys. Kaitlyn's driven to tears again. The guys hold all the power at this point. Her weakness is coming from her desire to please and not hurt anyone's feelings.

Nick pulls Kaitlyn aside for some reassurance that what they did isn't what's causing her distress. Kaitlyn needs to talk to Nick to make sure the snake hasn't snitched. He's shocked she'd think he'd say anything! Really? The guy who told 10 million people on live TV that he boned Andi is shocked that someone thinks he'd kiss and tell? His response is snarky. He also lies, saying he never used the word intimate. Someone better call him out on that because it's the EXACT word he used when he was recount the date to the guys and he found out Shawn had had off-camera time before he had. Nick feels hurt, even though he doesn't deserve to. But, that shows an emotional side that Kaitlyn is drawn too, so she's cool.

Kaitlyn tells the Gos that she regrets the night in Texas when she told him, "You're it" because it was unfair to him and everyone else there. It threw the relationship off track and put Kaitlyn and Shawn on different pages. Kaitlyn takes some of the power back from Shawn here. He's panicked going into the Rose Ceremony.

At the Rose Ceremony (finally!) she sends home Ben Z. and Tanner, who was somehow still around. Ben Z., by the way, looks and sounds like The Bachelor to me. I'll call it now.

The group gets ready to head to Killarney on the offensively named "Paddy Wagon" bus service. Ratface however gets to ride with Kaitlyn in a Mini Cooper and do some sightseeing. They get to drive right up to a deserted Blarney Castle and kiss the Blarney Stone. Man, Kaitlyn, what WON'T you make out with? When I went there on my honeymoon the parking lot and ticket booth are miles from the castle! Also, there's usually a 90-year-old Irishman who dips you back to kiss the mythical object. They drive through the country-side, I imagine comparing the patchwork fields of Ireland to Jared's patchy beard. She says she could "see him as my husband."

At Katilyn's castle-hotel Chris Harrison knocks on the door and instructs Kaitlyn on what's happening this week. Normally she'd be deciding which 4 guy's families she'd like to meet next week. But, she's changed the game so much, they're changing the game on Kaitlyn. She's got to lose THREE guys this week. The three left will get overnight "Fantasy Suite" dates, then she'll whittle those down to the final two, who will get hometown dates. That way everyone will be on an even keel and she won't be meeting the family of a guy she hasn't banged yet.

Chris Harrison tells the guys the plan and they are understandably shaken.

Cupcake Chris the Dentist gets the first one-on-one date, a helicopter to a picnic on the Cliffs of Moher. Kaitlyn says he hits all the checkmarks for what she's looking for in a husband but she doesn't see them together forever and tells him good-bye. Doing this on the side of a very tall cliff was just evil and if you were yelling at your TV, "Jump! Jump! Jump!" then you are evil too.... and we should watch together sometime because we were doing the exact same thing. Chris says Kait's "wrong," "She doesn't know what she wants," and "She's not ready to find happiness." He fake cries. I mean it's bad. My 18 month old daughter has more believable crocodile tears. Kaitlyn fake stares contemplatively out of the chopper window...


Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: Week 6

Once again we're dumped right into the drama from last week involving Deep Ian giving Kaitlyn a tongue lashing about how deep he is. We get a little replay of his speech. But in case it wasn't painfully obvious last week, we hear him say, "I intend to go home," Well, I'm glad you cleared that up, I thought you were trying to sell her a vacuum. Kaitlyn is incensed and driven to tears. I am too imagining how awful it must be to talk to Ian for any longer than two minutes. Ian is the male equivalent of one of my favorite SNL Weekend Update characters. Ian is the Guy You Wish You Hadn't Started a Conversation With at a Party. In the van home, Ian says he's so glad to be going home where he can have deep conversations with deep people instead of just talking about sex... before adding, "I gotta have some sex!"

Back at the cocktail party it's Nick to the rescue. Remember, Ian first unloaded to Nick in the hotel room. If this whole situation was planned by Nick and Ian, I'm confident it was orchestrated by Nick. He was definitely instrumental in persuading Ian to be totally honest with Kaitlyn. He wanders upstairs to comfort Kaitlyn saying the exact opposite of everything Ian said. Of course he had the conversation already mapped out in his head, he knew what Ian was going to say. Downstairs, the guys take issue with Nick hogging Kaitlyn because he already has a rose and there are guys who haven't had any time with her. Why aren't they allowed to steal her away like every other cocktail party? Ryan Gosling finally takes the initiative (even though he already has a rose too) and walks upstairs... and into a hardcore Nick-Kaitlyn make-out sesh. He storms out.

Before heading to the Rose Ceremony Kaitlyn sits down with the guys AGAIN to give her talk about how she's there for the right reasons AGAIN and how a guy doubted that AGAIN and left the show pre-RC AGAIN.

At the Rose Ceremony a man in a tight three piece suit steps out of the shadows. I'm told he used to host this show? Chris Harrison. It's been so long I don't remember what he does here, but he does ask Kaitlyn how she's doing. She says a lot of things are happening that she didn't expect like "feelings" and "drama." I guess being a contestant on the show doesn't mean you've ever seen it.

Everyone gets roses except Meaty Lips (Justin) and the Welder (Joshua). I don't know what's sadder, that no one fixed Josh's stupid haircut or that while doing his exit interview he could hear the guys cheering about the fact that they get to go to Dublin. Who am I kidding, it never gets old when an eliminated contestant can hear cheers of joy.

In Dublin, and this is apropos of nothing, Ratface is wearing his hoodie and he looks like a middle-eastern woman in a burka. Also, Nick gets the one-on-one date. They go for a walk in the park and he protects Kaitlyn from birds. They do some Irish dancing with some street performers. They buy Claddagh rings. They make out in an alley. They make out in a pub and drive an old Irishman out of his local. Kaitlyn is having a great time with Nick, but she's concerned that they are "too passionate." In other words, they are in lust rather than love. Like Ashley S. told her in NYC. I can't believe I just quoted Ashley S. as the voice of reason.

Dinner is at a cathedral, which I would feel conflicted making out in, but Kaitlyn and Nick have no problem, of course. Their conversations are a maddening surface level false spiral of repetition. "I'm glad I'm here." "I'm glad you're here." More kissing. Nick gets the date rose and an invitation back to Kaitlyn's hotel room where he also gets her flower. Behind closed doors and between moaning and breathing, Nick delivers cringeworthy lines like, "I want to know every part of you." How many women has that man subjected to that line? The whole intimate encounter is hilariously accompanied by off-site commentary by Ratface and Gosling about how great the process is and they hope she's having a good time, but they hope Nick is not having any luck on his date. It's like the producers told them, "Just think of the worst things you would want to be heard saying while Kaitlyn is being taken to Rambone Central by a guy you hate and say that."

The next morning, Kaitlyn is full of regret. Not for boning Nick so soon in their relationship, but the fact that people (besides the millions watching) might find out about it. She doesn't want their "off-camera time" (which is what we're calling it now) to be an issue. She doesn't feel guilty about getting some action and not even how it will make the other guys feel, but that they might find out and think less of their respective connections. I guess? At any rate, Nick lies about what happened saying they just stayed up all night and talked. Although when he finds out the Gos had an overnight with Kaitlyn too (why do I not remember this?) he does add that the experience was "intimate."

The Group date with Tanner, Ben Z., Shawn, Ratface, Ben H. and Chris is a traditional Irish wake. After a night of drunken sex with Nick it's no wonder Kaitlyn wanted a group date where she could lie down and close her eyes. Each of the guys has to eulogize Kaitlyn in her casket and even though it wasn't in the instructions, a lot of the guys think it has to rhyme. The Gos takes a shot at Nick, which Kaitlyn does laugh at. I'm guessing she's laughing at what a fool Shawn looks like. Ben Z. asks the guys to leave the room when it gets to be his turn and everyone (including I'm guessing the producers who picked him for this date) is reminded that he lost his mother at a young age. So, you know, death and funerals might not be as hilarious to him as everyone else. His toast is really serious and Kaitlyn melts, calling it "heartfelt and sweet."

By the time we get to having drinks at the Guinness Storehouse I notice that it's close to 9 and we're not going to have a Rose Ceremony AGAIN. What is it THIS time?! Shawn is jealous of Nick's time in Kaitlyn's suite (which of course was Nick's plan all along the day after). During his alone time with Kaitlyn he shows her pics of his family. But, Kait and Ratface have a "moment" and he ends up with the date rose and a private concert with THE CRANBERRIES!? I freakin' loved The Cranberries.  

Shawn is confused and as one contestant put it, "freaked out." He pulls a camera man or producer (or maybe just a lost brewery worker?) aside to freak out on them. Apparently, Kaitlyn was in his room for 6-7 hours one night and told him he was "it" (when was this?!) He says if he feels like this about Nick's overnight with her now, what about when it's Fantasy Suite time? He won't be able to handle it. He storms off to Kaitlyn's room and...

TO BE CONTINUED... of course. Next time on The Bachelorette: Crying!

Over the credits, Britt Britt is introducing Adam Levine Lite to her mom. It's so funny and obvious how the glamor girl has already changed her ways for the laid back musician. She's wearing a knit beanie for God's sake. Thankfully my DVR cut off before I had to watch any more.

Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: Week 5

"Cyuming u-" Nope! We're dumped right back into last week's action as Nick enters Dude HQ in NYC. "'sup, guys?" Even the crickets don't acknowledge his existence. As Nick sits on one couch facing the Council of Dudes on another, they grill him about his intentions coming on the show. "Hey, didn't we read in the tabloids that you were hanging with Andi like a month ago?" "If it doesn't work out this time, are you just going to come back next season?" Josh the Welder has the best question: "You keep saying Kaitlyn is a 'cool chick,' is she a 'cool chick' or an 'amazing woman' to you?" [LAW AND ORDER SOUND] NAILED HIM! Nick mumbles and "likes" his way through the cross examination but the guys are still mistrusting at the least. Some are intimidated by Nick's previous contact and connection-building with Kaitlyn. One of those is Ryan Gosling (Shawn) who says it's causing him to put his guard back up and "pump the brakes" on his relationship with her. The Welder and The Gos are among the guys who give Nick the Voldemort treatment and refuse to say his name, referring to him instead with nicknames like "The Other Guy."

Since we no longer have Rose Ceremonies at the end of this show, we're off to a cocktail party at the Mets' Citi Field at the beginning of this ep. Some of the guys do use their alone time to bitch about Nick. The Gos sits down with Kaitlyn and lets her know that he's having a lot of thoughts, feelings AND emotions about the Nick Situation. He's "questioning everything" and the walls are going back up. It's clear from Kaitlyn's reaction that the Gos has leverage. He's not going anywhere. He basically tells Kait to her face that her decision to bring Nick back is "stupid" and she begs him to stick with it. Kaitlyn assures Shawn that Nick's presence is not taking away from their connection.

At the Rose Ceremony it must be 5 degrees. The men are shivering like Chihuahuas. The Final Rose drama comes down to The Welder vs. Nick. They both end up with roses and Ryan, Jonathan and Corey (who?!) are sent home.

Kaitlyn tells the guys it's time to go some place warm! When you're freezing your questionable tattoos off in the middle of a ballpark in Queens anywhere would be a welcome change. Although the guys must've been a little disappointed to find out some place warmer is San Antonio. I'm sure it's a great city, but "some place warmer" on The Bachelorette usually means Mexico or the Virgin Islands or something!

Ben H. gets the first one-on-one date and he and Kaitlyn take a pimped out classic pick up to Gruene, Texas and the oldest dance hall in Texas to enter a two-step competition. We're treated to a montage of the oldest dancers in Texas explaining two-step as a metaphor for love and life.

Then we are treated to the coolest sonuvagun to ever grace your TV screen. For once, I am in awe of one of the unknown singers The Bachelorette has gotten to serenade our couple. Dale Watson has a stark silver pompadour, giant sideburns, his name on his leather guitar strap and a pedal steel sound that could slide under the vault door at Fort Knox. If Dale Watson is not the next Bachelor, what is the point of this show even going on? But it would only go one episode because he's so cool he would marry and bed all 26 women on the first night.

Anyway. Even though they get tapped out of the dance competition the date goes amazingly well. They definitely seem like the most natural coupling so far. At dinner, though, Ben H. clams up about his past relationship and being engaged previously. He eventually opens up with a little prodding from Kaitlyn and shows some emotion. I don't know what he said to Kaitlyn that she liked but he ends up with the date rose and even gets Kaitlyn to say "I like you."

The group date has Justin, Ratface, Ian, Chris, Tanner, Joe, JJ, Ben Z., Joshua and Nick, which means Gosling will be going on the other one-on-one date. The dudes are tasked with penning and singing their own Mariachi song of love to Kaitlyn. Joe struggles with the writing but succeeds with the performance, even being the only dude smart enough to snag a kiss mid-song. Ian seeks redemption for losing the Aladdin challenge but completely chokes. Any semblance of a singing voice we heard during the Broadway performance is nowhere to be heard. With Ian's singing and JJ's guitar playing, we could start a band and use it to torture Isis members. Josh is trying harder to beat Nick instead of trying to win over Kaitlyn. Nick takes Kaitlyn up on a balcony to serenade her. Some guys begrudgingly give him props for thinking of a grand gesture like that.

Over drinks, Josh lets Kaitlyn cut his hair. After the hack job she gives him, I'm wondering if she's ever held a pair of shears in her life. They blame the clippers running out of juice, but there's no way that haircut could have turned into anything good if they'd had unlimited clipper batteries. Unless the plan was to just shave him completely bald, but I can't believe that was his plan. For his alone time, Nick is no talking, all smooching. Joshua confronts Nick in front of the other guys about his continued mistrust of Nick. Nick gives some convoluted explanation about his intentions involving Andi and how he was glad that Josh came along that season and was the right man for Andi... I don't get it. It doesn't placate Joshua either because he confronts Kaitlyn about Nick again, saying he confessed his love for Andi last season, he talks about his season constantly and his strategy approaching dates and challenges. Kaitlyn springs to Nick's defenses immediately saying he's just trying to "relate" to the guys. Josh flatly tells her "no one likes him." Kaitlyn asks if that means everyone is lying to her.  Josh realizes he's dug a hole he won't be leaving.

Josh walks back into the dude holding pen and lies about where he was saying he was doing an interview. Kaitlyn enters right behind and calls Josh out for the conversation they just had. You have to feel bad as Josh is forced to take tons of heat while sporting such a stupid haircut. Either the guys want to hang Josh out to dry or they've just gotten over whatever challenge Nick initially posed. Or all of these conversations about Nick must've been Josh to himself. To drive her point home, Kait gives Nick the date rose. Josh says he wishes he could take the whole night back. Uh, DUH!

On Shawn's one-on-one he and Kaitlyn go kayaking down the river and they have a picnic where he defends the actions of Josh, his bother in arms against Nick. He tells Kaitlyn there are guys that didn't speak up when she asked them to last night. She says something that puts him at ease again about the Nick Situation. Either every conversation on this show is incredibly, purposefully vague or the conversations are heavily edited because every time the "resolution" music starts to play, I'm lost. How is this resolved? No one said anything of consequence!

Over dinner Shawn does some monotonous mumbling about a really bad car wreck he was in the day he coincidentally remembered to wear his seatbelt. Was that the day a mad doctor gave him the face of Ryan Gosling? We may never know (or it was edited out). He gets very emotional talking about it and says the FILWY words, "I'm falling in love with you." This is very early in the game for us keeping score at home. At this point it's usually "I could see myself falling in love with you," or the like. Even more surprisingly, Kaitlyn says she "feels the same way" and there's no walls between them anymore. Gos gets the rose and a moonlight canoe fireworks show.

OK, here we are. Cocktail party. Rose Ceremony coming. Look at the time left. We might actually get one off. She takes Ratface to her hotel room for some makin' out. Then Ian gets diarrhea of the mouth. We saw clips of him running his mouth earlier to Nick at Dude HQ. He says some pretty shocking things and they just keep coming.

"Kaitlyn doesn't see how great I am. I should be the next Bachelor. I'd have better luck with 26 women rather than with Kaitlyn. I don't feel it with Kaitlyn. It's her fault she can't see how much better I am than every other guy. I'm over it. She's just not that interesting. I'm not here to have fun. I have tons of sex back home."

Oh no. Look at the time. We're not going to get a Rose Ceremony AGAIN! IAN! He pulls Kaitlyn aside and says he knows she wants the guys to be honest. He honestly tells her that judging from the non-Ian guys, she likes a lower quality of man, not a deep guy like Ian. He tells her he doesn't think SHE'S there for the right reasons, "you're here to make out with a bunch of guys." In case she still doesn't get it, Ian straight up tells her, "You're shallow."


Where are you Chris Harrison? Save us!

Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: Week 4

Again, no "cyuming yup" preview to kick off the show this week. We get dumped right back into the drama with Clint. Kaitlyn heard from all of the other guys (minus JJ, of course) about how Clint is the worst and pulls him aside. Clint says he's been nothing but nice to all of the guys and hasn't spoken an ill word about anyone or to any one since he's been there. Since that's all we've seen him do on camera, we know that's a lie and Kaitlyn has heard as much from the rest of the house so she tells Clint, "I'm done." To which he replies, "So what?" As far as apologies go, it's not "You complete me," but it's the best the hairless surfing gorilla could do. Kaitlyn says she can't trust Clint and just to hammer the point home, because it's entirely possible he's missed it completely, Kaitlyn parades Clint in front of the guys to tell them he's leaving. Does anyone have anything to say to Clint before he gets in the van? No one does except the last guy you'd expect: JJ.

JJ tells Clint to say he's sorry for taking up valuable cocktail party time with Kaitlyn and causing "emotions." This cuts Clint to the core and it's obvious to everyone that JJ's betrayal has cut him deeper than anything Kaitlyn has done to him. JJ tries to apologize later for being "rash" in the moment, but the damage is done and Clint and JJ have a pretty bad breakup. In his sit down, JJ is literally in tears and slaps himself. This made me really jealous of JJ because he got to do something we all want to do and that's slap JJ. Taking Kaitlyn's side against Clint hasn't done JJ any favors with the rest of the house as they all pile on for pulling a Judas on his buddy.

After a huddle with Chris, Kaitlyn tells the guys there will not be a Rose Ceremony tonight. Really? Are we just not going to have ANY Rose Ceremonies this season? All of the guys were looking forward to JJ joining Clint at the airport, so when Kaitlyn says she doesn't want to send anyone home because she feels good about everyone you can hear a cricket drop a pin. "This is a good thing," she sheepishly tells the guys to break the awkward silence. They give her a pity applause. Chris pops back in to tell everyone we're heading to NYC.

Cut to the dudes' Times Square hotel where we learn Jonathan, Justin, Ben Z., Corey, Ryan, Tanner, JJ and Shawn (Ryan Gosling) will be rap battling under the tutelage of Doug E. Fresh. It will be whiter than when Soulja Boy was on and gave us the classic jam "Right Reasons," which is still stuck in my head. Gosling thinks there is a connection between Doug E. Fresh and the dance known as The Dougie (there is not). The rap battlers fare about how you'd expect "dudes in khakis" to fare. No one has any rhythm, except Corey surprisingly. JJ calls the NYC crowd "hoes" and is quickly boo'd (jealous again). Gosling actually has some good lines and flashes some body, which gets the desired effect. During the battles some familiar faces are shown in the audience. The virgin from last season and... who is she with? Nick from Andi's season.

It turns out Kaitlyn and Nick have never met, but they did strike up a social media/texting relationship after she was given the boot by Chris Soules. Nick tells Kaitlyn he's there because he'd regret if she got engaged and they had never met.  He's even slimier than I remember. He slinks around biting his cup and splays out when he sits, always displaying his disgusting smirk and talking through his teeth. He's like the Satan in a low-budget movie about the dangers of pre-marital sex they'd show at a Christian summer camp. He wants to join the gang, Kait says she has to think it over.

Oh, yeah, that's right. This is all in the middle of a group date. Over drinks on a boat, Kaitlyn tells the guys a new guy has shown up that she wants to hang around. The guys are understandably upset and even more so when they find out it's Nick. Their main beef with NV centers around when he called out Andi for (seemingly) taking his virginity in the Fantasy Suite and then not marrying him.

Kaitlyn goes outside where Nick is waiting and makes out with him. She tells him she needs more time with the decision. Back inside Justin tells Kaitlyn what she wants to hear, that "one more guy won't make a difference," which gets him the rose. Tanner says it's the "least meaningful rose in the history of the show," and what Kaitlyn is doing is "disrespectful."

It's easy to see both sides of the coin here. On Kaitlyn's side, why should she turn anyone away with whom she's already made a connection? She's on here to find true love. On the guy's side, this is the hand you were dealt. Dance with the girl (or 26 guys in this case) that you came in with. As much as I dislike Nick, it's hard not to side with Kaitlyn on this one...

The other weird Ashley from last season, Ashley S. makes a cameo doing Kaitlyn's hair and doing what stylists do, giving relationship advice. Ashley S. seems strangely with it as she tells Kaitlyn what she's feeling is probably just novelty and she needs to make sure there's a connection besides "lust." Kaitlyn ignores her advice and invites Nick to stay.

Oh, yeah, that's right. This is all prelude to a one-on-one date that at least one of the daters is excited for. Ratface and Kait have a romantic dinner at The Met. Kaitlyn is one million miles away while Ratface pours his heart out, as you do on a one-on-one. Whatever his sob story is is covered up by a Kaitlyn voice over, which is not only funny, but also saves us from having to hear Ratface prattle on.

When he's finally finished, Kaitlyn changes the subject to her favorite topic, Nick. Ratface is not excited about having to talk about Nick, but he takes the Justin approach and tells her whatever she wants to do "we'll get through it." Despite only being with Ratface in body while her spirit is with Nick, she likes the date and Ratface and even Ratface's dumb poem. Even though he rhymes stuff like "do" and "two" and "dot" and "a lot," he gets the date rose and an offer to continue the date.

(It's at this point I realized a guy named Jared being on The Bachelorette is all probably just a huge Neil Lane tie-in.)

We get our first, long-awaited helicopter ride of the season. Jared says those magical words that you're allowed to say at this point in the season and admits that he could see himself falling in love with Kaitlyn and they might be looking back at this 50 years from now as the night he fell in love with her. Kaitlyn does say she could "see a future" with Ratface.

The next morning, Kaitlyn has made up her mind and goes to break it to the guys that Nick is moving in that night. Gosling is questioning everything. Ryan asks a fair question, "Where does it stop?" Another good point, and if it wasn't Kaitlyn's show, I'd agree. But, if she wants a chance to make out with every available man in America, I think we'd see millions of men join the show.

Group date #2 is Ian, Chris, Joe, Josh and Ben H. and takes place on Broadway where the guys "audition" to be in the musical stage production of Disney's Aladdin. The guys embrace the dancing/singing/acting challenge, even though a lot of them struggle with at least one of the aspects. How do these guys not know the words to "A Whole New World?" Ian has a decent enough voice. Chris REALLY puts his heart into it. I mean to the point that the Broadway stars think there's a chance he's mocking them. But, he wins and everyone else has to go home while he and Kaitlyn get to perform a walk-on part in an actual performance of Aladdin for a full audience. Their appearance is about 3 seconds long, but it's 3 more seconds than most everyone else in the universe will spend on a live Broadway stage in their lives. It's actually pretty cool. Kaitlyn obviously loves it. She could have been there with Juan Pablo and still been ecstatic. But, she's there with Chris and he benefits from her giddiness. Benefits with his mouth. But, you can tell it's the high of being on a Broadway stage. Yeah, they're making out, but the kisses aren't as long. She doesn't seem as into it. Chris does get a rose and Kait concedes "he'd be a great husband." A great husband for who, she doesn't say.

It's right about now we all looked at our clocks and realized this was going to be the third episode in a row that doesn't end with a Rose Ceremony. Nick finally makes it to Dude HQ after wandering NYC for who knows how long. Seriously, this episode was like 1/2 shots of Nick walking. He opens the door and TO BE CONTINUED...

Over the credits we're forced to endure Britt Britt and Brady's seaside frolicking. We learn that only dumb Brady would wear black jeans and a black shirt to the beach.

Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: Week 3

This ep drops us right into the action that was "to be continued" last week with King Kupah ranting and raving after being given the boot by Kaitlyn. It's clear Kupah's idea of acting tough is pacing around manically yelling "AH!" Kaitlyn sees what's going on outside and walks out to confront him. The Troopa gets all weepy and begs again to come back, but Kaitlyn calmly explains that's not going to happen. Kupah's head hangs low in resignation as she walks back into the house. As soon as the door slams: Whoa! Here's Mr. Tough Guy again! What a joke. What an odd season this is. I think more guys have left outside of Rose Ceremonies than in them! The whole Kupah thing just fizzles out and it's obvious it didn't really did not need to be a To Be Continued... deal. Kaitlyn takes the opportunity to huddle up the guys and give her "be honest" speech about not doing anything you're uncomfortable with, which will kind of be a theme of this episode.

Speaking of Rose Ceremonies we still have one to do. Tony hasn't forgotten, after all, he's left behind important things to be here, like his business, his dog... and all his bonsai trees! A dark-haired beard guy and a light-haired beard guy are sent home. I don't recognize them but they are later revealed to be Daniel and Corey respectively. Kaitlyn says Corey had it all but she felt like he needed to be with his daughter right now. I'm glad someone else could make that decision for him, he'd probably forgotten all about her. Neither dude seem broken up.

The next day the guys are woken up by Sumo wrestlers including one weighing 600 lbs. that Chris says is "the heaviest Japanese human being ever." That is the most amazing thing you will ever see on this franchise. I couldn't believe I was seeing the heaviest of an entire nationality. It made me wonder who the heaviest American human being is/was ever. It was Jon Brower Minnoch who weighed 1,400 lbs and is the heaviest HUMAN ever, period. He died in 1983 and not of old age. Thank you, Wikipedia. Take that Japan. There's still something we make in America better than in Asia and that's giant Americans.

Anyway, the first group date group is Clint (who the Sumos call "Crin-tuh," which is awesome), Chris, Tony, JJ, Joe and Shawn. The group date is really lame as the first half is training right in the front driveway of the Bachelor Pad with all of the other guys watching. JJ notes that everyone has a nice ass except Tony. JJ critiquing other men's asses will become more relevant later in the episode. All of the guys are censored in their Sumo diapers, often from both sides and especially Joe since much is made of his scrotum refusing to be contained.

Tony takes his training very seriously, and seems into it. But, when he is pushed out of the ring he starts to pout and walk back into the house. Kaitlyn stops him and he starts ripping into her that every date has to include some sort of show of aggression. Kaitlyn, who is trying her hardest to have a serious conversation with a "healer" wearing a diaper, says she thought it would be a fun, silly thing to do together. Oh, you mean the guys weren't supposed to treat it like a genuine Sumo championship title bout like Tony was? Also, Tony, I know some dudes went boxing, but what was so aggressive about your comedy date last week? I'm renaming you Tony the Phony because for all of the body of a poet, heart of a warrior BS, no one is being more aggressive than YOU! Tony tells Kaitlyn, "I want you to see the real me! The strength I have" We are! In the heat of the moment your true self is revealing that you don't even have the strength to act like a man and not a crybaby.

Tony the Phony stays home while the rest of the group daters go to a sumo exhibition at some pedestrian mall. They're diapered rears are still censored, although what they can show the horrified children in this public space that they can't show on TV is beyond me. I noticed on this ep that lots of the guys are tatted up including Ben's Z's GIANT Austrian crest on his shoulder and JJ's shoulder tatt of an 8th grade boy's history class notebook doodles. Clint takes over for Tony the Phony as Mr. Serious and proves it's not just high school football players who can use this show to relive their glory days, but high school wrestlers too!

Back at HQ, Tony is still ranting about the aggressive dates and starts coming up with more appropriate date ideas. "Why can't we go to the zoo and impersonate the animals!?" It's the most angry way that question has ever been asked. He packs his bags and heads off, presumably to the zoo, but first stops to talk to Kaitlyn. I buckle in for a long drawn out conversation, probably punctuated with a commercial break but... Tony says his peace and he's gone. It takes about a minute and Kaitlyn definitely doesn't beg him to stick around. Good riddance. Go marry a bonsai tree, you quack.

Over Group Date Drinks, Clint says he's going to "hang back" and let Kaitlyn come to him. If she likes him as much as she seemed to after their one-on-one date, "she'll come talk to me," is his thinking. Man, she's got some real dum dums on the show this season. I mean, between Ryan M., Tony, Kupah, and now Clint. Did they forget to cast the show and pick these guys up at the bus station right before filming?

Kaitlyn does talk to all the other guys and give out muchas smooches. At this point, I've stopped counting smooches. I know I like to give you a sort of running tally of guys getting kissed, but just assume at this point that everyone is getting smooched. How about this, I'll tell you when someone DOESN'T get smooches? Ryan Gosling gets the date rose. It surprises Clint that sitting like a drunk lump on a couch doesn't get a women excited and says he's coming to the realization that "Kaitlyn may not be the girl for me."

Ben Z. gets the one-on-one date to a scary haunted house type deal call The Basement. Basically a life size, puzzle-type real-life video game, where you have to find clues in a room and use them to escape. I bet it's usually fun, except ABC notes on screen that they've added insects and animals to the experience that aren't normally a part of The Basement. It means Kaitlyn and Ben encounter scorpions, dead cockroaches, birds and giant snakes as they make their way through the puzzle. They eventually make it out of the room and it probably bonded them as much as any team building exercise would.

Over drinks at K's place, Ben tries to downplay his fear of snakes, which Kaitlyn isn't buying but she does appreciate that he was the one that dealt with them on the date. Ben also tells the awful tale of the day his mom died and how it led to his aversion to crying. He hasn't cried in the 11 years that it happened. Then they do some hot tubbin' and he of course gets the rose.

Group date two consists of Jonathan, Ben H., Joshua, Ryan, Jerod and Tanner. The guys head to a local elementary school where they find out they'll be teaching a sex ed class. The guys are nervous, but make their best attempts at being honest and mature about sex. Ben H. is sentimental and serious and makes the smart move of bringing Kaitlyn into his presentation about sperm and eggs. Still, many laughs about genitals and bodily functions are had. Oh, and we learn you can't say "clitoris" on TV. It's pretty obvious right away that all the kids in the class are child actors with orders to put the guys through their paces, which is why I think they had Kaitlyn spill the beans to us, the home viewers. She says it's a big prank but... she never reveals that to the guys... it was probably an after thought after the producers realized we, the audience, wouldn't fall for the "prank."

Over Group Date Drinks, Josh admits to Kaitlyn he was a late bloomer and didn't even have his first kiss until college. He does not get smooches, which is bad news for him. We know Kaitlyn likes to move fast and even she says "time is ticking." Ratface gets smooches and tells Kaitlyn he's falling for her. Kaitlyn is really into him to. Any goodwill Ben H. built up with his sex ed presentation is immediately dashed in my mind when he takes Kaitlyn up to the roof, points at a skyscraper and says "That building is Die Hard." What does that even MEAN!? Die Hard isn't the name of the building in Die Hard, it's Nakatomi Plaza. I didn't even look that up. I guess Kaitlyn isn't the fan of cinema that I am though and Ben H. makes a good enough impression to get the date rose.

Back at Bachelor HQ, it gets weird. The men are noticing a blooming bromance between JJ and Clint. They're always hanging in the pool or hot tub together, cooking and eating their meals together... showering together. OK, some guys are fine with the communal shower, that's fine. It's clear the producers are going for a Brokeback Bachelor thing and I get it, but these guys are such pros they could edit this show to make Juan Pablo look good, right?

Wrong. Clint doesn't need fancy editing. He flat out says he has more of a connection with JJ than Kaitlyn. He and JJ have become really close, "too close." He says he never thought he'd come on the show and fall in love with a man, but he believes in the show's process and he's a success story. At the cocktail party, Clint realizes he blew the group date and needs that rose to stay on the show and be with JJ. That's not a joke. He said that.

Clint pulls Kaitlyn aside and starts pleading his case. Clint has the look and delivery of someone who was just hit in the face with a cast iron skillet. But, he smooths things over with Kaitlyn and redeems himself. He runs back to JJ and the two skulk from the shadows alternately complimenting each other's bodies and trashing the other dudes. Are these guys really on the show for the wrongest of reasons?

No. It was revealed recently that they went on the show with the whole homoerotic storyline planned out, the producers loved the idea and everyone ran with it. JJ and Clint also went on the show with the sole purpose of being "the villains." "Villains gotta vill," they keep saying. NOT A VERB! Unfortunately for them, when you go on this show with any agenda besides what the producers want you to do, they can paint you however they want. And I don't think these guys are going to be painted as any kind of threat to guys on the show for the Right Reasons.

Several dudes use the cocktail party to out Clint and JJ as top shelf douchebags and we get ANOTHER episode without a Rose Ceremony ending. Instead this ep ends with Kaitlyn pulling Clint aside about to lay down the law.

Breaking Bachelor News!

That didn't take long. About 2 months in fact.

Last year's The Bachelor couple are no more.

“Whitney Bischoff and Chris Soules have mutually and amicably decided to end their engagement,” the couple told Us Weekly in a joint statement. “They part with nothing but respect and admiration for one another and will continue to be supportive friends. They wish to thank everyone who has supported them through this journey.”

They're engagement was shorter than Kim Kardashian's second marriage. Hell, it was shorter than Kim Kardashian's sex tape!

Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: Week 2

Tonight on The Bachelorette: Fighting and comedy!

On the first full episode of the season with just one Bachelorette, Chris Harrison meets with Kaitlyn at her house at what must be 2PM after a marathon first night. At Bachelor HQ, the dudes enjoy a pre-journey mimosa toast.

For some reason we also check in with Britt, who is crying on a speaker phone call with her mom. Britt Britt is still shocked. Her CPU simply doesn't have the MHz to process that Kaitlyn is prettier than her. But, what's this? A Knock Knock at the door? It's squinty-eyed Adam Levine Lite, Brady... in yoga pants? Please tell me we won't be continuing to follow this storyline. Is this a bone being thrown to Bachelor Nation's Britt fans? Are there such people?

On this episode we'll see 3 dates: 2 group and the first one-on-one of season.

On the First group date: Daniel, Justin, Ratface, Corey, Tanner, Kupah, Bens H and Z. It's a boxing date! Yeah, let's just get these guy right to physical harm right awat. Laila Ali helps show the guys the ropes. Most of the guys, however, probably learned all they need to about boxing beating on rival frat bros. THETAS RULE!

The first fight is the gargantuan Ben Z. vs. Daniel, or more accurately, Ben Z chasing Daniel around the ring. Corey and Justin look like two Tasmanian devils spinning around the ring like two tornados of arms and legs. In fact, most of the fights are just the dudes flailing and whiffing haymakers. Kupah was really into the training and it shows. Tanner is forced to throw in the towel before real damage is done. The tournament boils down to Jared vs. Ben Z., who obivously never let go of his high school glory days. He mentions that if he didn't win he'd never hear the end of it from his "football buddies." Well, just don't go to Ruby Tuesday's for happy hour for the next month or so. It'll blow over.

He doesn't lose though. Quite the opposite as he puts Jared in the hospital. Kaitlyn is surprised at the turn of events. She didn't want anyone to get hurt! "I wanted this to be fun!" Yes, give boxing gloves to 8 meatheads in full testosterone fueled alpha gorilla mode competing to win a woman and expect them NOT to take ever jab personally. The doc says Ratface has to go to the hospital so he misses drinks.

During drinks, Kaitlyn has some alone time with the guys. First up a Ben (Z), who starts the conversation by asking her, "know how many times I've been in a fight?" I half-expect him to say, none. Like, maybe, "I was always the guy in my group who would cool down the situation." Nope. "One or two." That's not surprising! And that probably means per night on a busy weekend. Ben also uses the time to tell Kaitlyn his mom died of cancer when he was 13.

Kaitlyn gets a note while talking to a furniture clothing design company guy whose name I've forgotten. Why does funiture needs clothing anyway? Kaitlyn must be pretty bored to, because right in the middle of the guy's sentence she gets a not that says, "Come downstairs right now. I need to see you." She doesn't hesitate to leave the convo mid thought and head out side where, who is waiting? It's Jared. Unfortunately it looks like the doctors were unable to cure his malignant case of patchy beard. They walk and talk a little. He says the doctors told him he needs rest, but he wanted to stop by and see her. He gets a smooch.

Ben Z. gets the group date rose and muchas smoochas of course.

Big, Blonde Clint gets to go on the one-on-one date. First is an underwater photoshoot/make out sesh, then the first of several dinners that will go uneaten. During that dinner Clint tells Kaitlyn she has "all the checklist of dreamwishes he came on here for" or some similar nonsense and he ends up with the rose.

Back at Dude HQ, Tony the Healer is upset about the boxing date. He says fighting like that sends wrong message about love, which should be won with love, not violence. Could he be implying that Kaitlyn is here for the Wrong Reasons?

Group date 2 conists of JJ, Jonathan, Joshua, Chris, Ian, Joe, and Tony and it takes place at The Improv comedy club. The hilarious Amy Schumer is on hand to help the guys write some stand up acts, since Kaitlyn is "the funny one" from the franchise now. Also on hand are comedians Nikki Glaser and Rachel Feinstein.

JJ couldn't be more excited because he's always wanted to do stand-up. He expects to be good at it because he's good at everything else. Amy says JJ is only missing charisma, humility. She completely mocks him to his face, expecially after he says he's smarter than everyone and that gets him in trouble. Amy says not to worry because he's not smarter than anyone there and calls him a "little turd." This is only five minutes after meeting him. How is Kaitlyn not seeing this!?

No one really stands out. Chris the dentist is very nervous, but he uses it well. He also unbuttons his shirt. Oh, and Tony stood out as well, but probably not how he'd hoped. Rather than any jokes, he starts spouting the same spiritual gibberish he always does. Everyone thinks his over sensitive thing is a schtick and he gets a couple polite chuckles. Then they realize he's not kidding and it's crickets. It's Long. Rambling. Awkward. 100% Joke-free.

During some one-on-one times over drinks the Welder tells Kaitlyn that unlike most of the other guys he's a love virgin, he's never been in love. Not a virgin virgin, mind you. He's banged tons of chicks, I'm sure. He just wants Kaitlyn to know he had absolutely no feelings for them whatsoever. He also has to tell Kaitlyn how much his dogs fart, poop and drool. Luckily that's Kaitlyn's sense of humor and she cracks up just at the mere utterance of those words. Poop. heh.

Tony dumps more faux-Zen mumbo jumbo on Kaitlyn. He also tells her he had an immediate connection with Britt Britt, but after today he's also open to a connection with Kaitlyn.

JJ talks about his daughter and tears up a little, which he parlays into a smooch. JJ is this season's over-confident guy who is destined for a huge fall. He probably thinks he's the only guy getting any action.

It's quite the opposite. In fact, Joe gets right to smooching Kaitlyn while JJ's overconfident voice over is still playing. Joe gets some points when he gives Kaitlyn a genuine, Kentucky-style "Well, I'll be" after they make out.

But, JJ does get the rose.

Then he perpetrates one of the cardinal sins of The Bachelorette and steals Kaitlyn right at start of cocktail party. It's a dick move, all the guys agree. JJ justifies it by telling Kaitlyn "Your husband wouldn't be sitting back," letting her talk to other guys just because he already has a rose. Afterwards he makes sure to stop by each huddle of guys to goad them about the move and how he's "not sorry" and he "had to remind her what husband material is." JJ loves the attention from the other guys, even if it is negative. He thinks he's the season's biggest villain. I think he says he ran Brady out of the house? We all think he's a joke without a leg to stand on, right?

Ian tells Kaitlyn his story about being run over and being told he'd never run again. We know the inspiring tale ends with the fact the he did run again. He says the ordeal taught him, "I can accomplish anything I put my mind to. And I'm putting my mind to this." It's an amazingly good line. I wondering if he should've played it this early. I mean that's something you'd hear Tom Cruise say in a monologue when he's trying to win back Jennifer Lawrence at the end of some romcom.

The one person taking JJ seriously is Tony. Tony is just as dumb as JJ though because he's genuinely surprised and frustrated that this reality show is actually a competition and not a transcendental mass orgy/wedding.

Kupah is worried he hasn't made a connection and pulls Kaitlyn aside to blame her for not making an effort to get to know him. She has a pretty strong counter argument though since he's the only guy that didn't talk to her during the boxing date. Kupah tries his next desperate move and plays the race card, basically accusing Kaitlyn of keeping him because he's black and looks good in the group of guys. She says she liked their first meeting, and that she thought they bonded over their love of music. In a way that puts Kupah Troopa's mind at ease. He says he didn't feel like there was a connection until they had this weird talk. Unfortunately, it's exactly the opposite for Kaitlyn who says, "I felt a connection until right now." He fires back, "OK. I didn't expect that." Really? How did you expect her to take you questioning her motives and accusing her of being racist? You can tell King Kupah is not long for this world as the producers put on the goofy music during his back peddling. Kupah gets diarrhea of the mouth saying anything and everything in hopes Kaitlyn will do another 180. "Your eyes are pretty! You're pretty" He might as well be back at the gym talking to a heavy bag. Kaitlyn tells him she needs time to think. He offers up his fist and says, "OK, can we pound? Take as much time as you need it's cool." Yes, let's pound. And thank you for telling me what I can do on the show of which I am the star and sole decision maker.

As Kaitlyn is taking that time she's been allowed by Kupah, he starts mouthing off loudly to the guys recounting the conversation they just had and how Kaitlyn was acting. Kaitlyn overhears, of course, and makes the suprememly easy call of just booting Kupah right then. Kupah is taken by surprise! "Not fair," he says! Kaitlyn's small woman brain is just having a rash womanly reaction, let's just go back inside. He doesn't understand that it's not his decision. He starts emptying the chamber, "I don't want to go home! I think you're hot! We both like movies and movie quotes! Don't you like movie quotes!?" He keeps begging between long sips of his cocktail, but it's to no avail.

Kupah's exit interview seems to be going normally for a few seconds and then he freaks out and starts screaming at the producers. Kaitlyn runs outside and the episode comes to an abrupt end. I've got to be honest, I did not see that coming. I kind of liked being taken by surprise and the Rose Ceremony being postponed a week. Hopefully we'll trim a lot of fat next week with Rose Ceremonies bookending the ep.

Oh man. During the credits we're forecd to watch Britt and Brady who are in love and hanging out every day. Brady says those words every woman wants to hear, "I'm wondering if you'd be my girl." Wow! First she's his girl, maybe they'll be going steady soon! "PLEASE let this be the last time we see them," I said, knowing they'd return on After the Final rose if not sooner.

Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: Week 1 Part 2

Night two of the "epic" two-night premiere thankfully goes light on the intro and dumps us right into revealing who the men selected as The Bachelorette.

It ain't Britt Britt. Chris tells her in private, which is kind of unlike this show. I figured whoever lost would be shamed with the chorus of dudes looking on. Britt is absolutely floored that she's less likeable in ANY situation than that some stand-up clown, Kaitlyn. You can see the shock on her face as Chris tells her that, yes, in a subjective, quantitative competition, the woman you think has that engaging personality and sense of humor to make up for being less attractive than you has been chosen by a couple dozen guys as their potential wife OVER you. Britt Britt is sent off privately in a limo, crying. I would love to tell you what she said and I actually rewound the show to see if I could make it out, but without subtitles I could not get one word between sobs. I didn't know if it was one last jab by the producers or if they thought subtitles would be in bad taste, but it was seriously unintelligible. If I were to guess it was like every other exit interview, "I thought this was it. When is it going to happen for me? I just want to find love. etc. etc."

Then Chris gets to break the news to Kaitlyn, only he tries the ol' reality show host switcheroo and begins with "Unfortunately...." Kaitlyn's heart sinks! "I had to send Britt home. You're going to be The Bachelorette." Unfortunately, her competition was sent home and she gets to be on the show? That doesn't make sense, even as a joke. Chris, watch fellow reality host Phil Keoghan on The Amazing Race mat and learn how a pro does the "You're off the show... J/K, you're still in!" switcheroo.

Kaitlyn is surprised and giddy. She does fake caring about how Britt took the news before catching her breath and jumping into the dude soup. Because there will be a Rose Ceremony tonight. How long have these people been UP!? It must be 5AM! Should be easy for Kaitlyn though, right? "Who didn't vote for me? YA GAWN!"

Everyone starts kissing up to Kaitlyn, as they should and must. The Team Britt dudes are confused, nervous and conflicted. Do they stay and join Kaitlyn on this journey or do they bail because they shouldn't take the spot of someone who voted for Kaitlyn? Guys like Tony, Brady and Ratface. Ratface decides to 'fess up and tell Kaitlyn he voted for Britt BUT he still wants to be there. Kaitlyn appreciates the honesty and it makes her want to start finding out who is there for her and who was there for Britt.

JJ tells Kaitlyn about his daughter. I must've missed something amazing he said because Kaitlyn gets WAY into him for some reason.

The Dentist, Chris, decides to go for it  and gets the first smooch of the series. It was kind of off putting because they both knew it was coming but he wouldn't shut up about it so they both had to keep wetting their lips. It looked like two lizards having a staring contest.

As she talks to more guys, Kaitlyn starts to change her tune about Team Britt and says she's ready to reset and not factor in who voted for whom or if the guys are disappointed she's The Bachelorette.

Despite Ratface, the Dentist and welder Chris Soules, Jr. making big strides with Kaitlyn (CSJ gave Kaitlyn the rose he forged from metal. It is pretty awesome.), Ryan Gosling (AKA Shawn B.) gets the First Impression Rose and some smoochin'. It's not surprising if you saw his intro on Monday, but it is surprising because I don't think he's said three words to her.

The First Rose Ceremony is always an exercise in "Who's that?" Daniel? I honestly do not remember a Daniel from Monday. Kaitlyn starts doling out roses, but right in the middle, Brady, the songwriter, stops her and takes her out of the room. He tells her his heart was with Britt and he must go "find her." Chris is waiting outside the house and says he can "hook him up" if he's serious. They walk through the gates off into the sunrise... THE SUNRISE! The SUN is coming UP! Let these men sleep! I am thankful Brady booted himself because now we won't be subjected to any overwrought, banal musical performances.

Who went home? Ian Ziering (who DOES suck), Miguel, stripper Josh and some other white guy. Wikipedia says their real names are Shawn E., David, Josh S. and Bradley.

"Cyuming yup" this season on The Bachelorette: they actually go to interesting places like Ireland, NYC and... The Alamo! There's jealous dudes, feats of strength and... Nick from Andi's season?! That snake in the grass?! It looks like Kaitlyn is super into him too. I soaked my DVR after I deleted this ep just because he showed up. There's dramatic boning and subsequent slut shaming! Yes, Kaitlyn breaks the cardinal rule for women on this show: you must remain chaste and virginal until the men give you permission to do anything but smooch within the Fantasy Suites. Just ask Claire how it turned out for her. We'll burn that bridge when we get to it though.

During the credits Brady, in a limo, rips off a line from Good Will Hunting and says he left because he has to "see about a girl." So glad. So glad he's gone. I just hope he doesn't come back as one of those no-names they always have to dance dates.

Murphy's Blachelorette Blog: Week 1

The pool has been shocked, the house and been hosed down and we've been promised a premiere that's going to be... dramatic!? Drama?! On MY The Bachelorette? It's more likely than you might think...

As you probably remember we're starting this season with TWO Bachelorettes, Kaitlyn, the funny one, and Britt Britt, the stereotypical and crying one. Chris (who after last year's confusing two Chris season will go back to being called Chris) says people have been angry about giving the men the power to choose who The Bachelorette will be. This is a reality show competition that lasts mere weeks where the prize at the end is you enter the timeless and sacred institution of holy matrimony for eternity and THIS is what makes people angry about it? WHY?

After we're reintroduced to Kaitlyn and Britt Britt, the cavalcade of dudes begins. This is why I especially hate the premiere into the first few weeks of this show. Twenty-nine ripped car salesmen is just too many to keep track of. It doesn't help that there are like 6 Ryans this year. I'll run down the basic stats of the dudes. I can't guarantee this is correct, just what I scribbled down during the show.

-Jonathan, from Detroit, is an Automotive Spokesman. Like Matthew McConaughey? Jonathan also has a kid. Later in the show, some other dude will tell one of the Bachelorettes he has a kid, too, but I don't know who it was.

-Joe sells insurance in Kentucky

-Josh is 27 from Chicago and is stripping his way through law school, or more likely studying law until his stripping career takes off.

-Brady is a 33 year old musician from Nashville who is going to punish us several times this season with overly-sentimental, cliche-ridden country-ish songs.

-Joshua is a welder from Idaho. Yes, basically Chris Soules 2.0. He's even from the other "I" state!

-Ian is 28 and lives in Venice, CA. He's a runner who was told he'd never walk again after a near fatal car wreck. He did eventually walk and run again. Nothing snarky here, what am I, an animal?

-Jared is a 26 year old restaurant manager from Rhode Island. I will be referring to him as "Ratface" on the show. I apologize, but it's just the easiest way to remember him at this point. He is also already married to an unfunny joke about his alter ego "Love Man."

-Tony is 35, from St. Louis, and has the first made-up profession flash on the screen this season: "Healer." He is shown talking to plants and stretching people. He also has severe dark circles under his eyes or was recently socked, possibly by an unhealed plant/NFL player

-Ben is a 26 year old personal trainer from San Jose. The Bachelorette producers force him to stare at a picture of his deceased mother for an inordinate amount of time during his intro package.

-Ben H. does something with software and is 26 and lives in Denver.

That's 10 guys so far and ZERO dadbods!

We're to the point now where Kaitlyn and Britt have pulled up to the Bachelor Pad in their separate limos and had a chat with Chris in his ultra-skinny, super slim fit suit. Now the guys are going through the greeting ritual of trying to seem funny/sexy/charming but usually failing miserably. Some guys greet Kaitlyn first, some guys greet Britt first. Much will be made of this.

Like, Clint, the 27 year old architectural engineer from Chicago goes to Britt first. So does Ryan B., the 27 year old realtor from Florida. So does Ratface. Kaitlyn is feeling dejected and "nervous" about being chosen as the one true Bachelorette.

Out of the limo steps Kupah, a 32 year old entrepreneur from Boston who I haven't decided whether to nickname King Kupah or Kupah Troopa... he goes to Britt first. As does Brady, the singer.

Just when I'm starting to think this may not be the producers' trademark clever editing, Cory, a developer from Texas exits the limo and saunters up to Kaitlyn! So does Ian! And JJ, a former investment banker and hockey hobbyist who brings Kaitlyn a puck and says he wanted to "puck you." Cheesy to you and me, sure, but you gotta admit, that's a total Kaitlyn joke.

Then Ryan M. makes his entrance. I didn't know it at the time, but I was meeting my favorite Bachelorette character since Craig. Ryan M. is 28 and runs a junkyard or something in Kansas City. He is Team Kaitlyn. Just how much Team Kaitlyn, we'll soon find out.

Bradley is a 25 year old Auto shipper from Georgia and makes a Kaitlyn-approved "Love-Love match" tennis joke. Josh does his stripper dance. Joe brings a jar that he SAYS is Kentucky moonshine, but judging from the swigs he and Kaitlyn take it in no way actually is moonshine.

Now Britt is feeling insecure because he river of dudes has dried up and Kaitlyn is swimming not only in dudes, but dudes with gifts. Like Shawn B. aka Ryan Gosling Stunt Double (RGSD). He's a personal trainer from Connecticut and you can tell he's something because he gets his own special music and he tells Kaitlyn she's "the reason why I'm here."

At this point Kaitlyn runs inside to throw the men a little red meat. Britt Britt says it's in bad form and "unfair," but she's probably just upset she didn't think of it first.

David, 26, real estate, Florida and Corey, 30, banker, NYC sneak in under the guise of not really having personalities interesting enough at this point to feature on the show.

In the house, Ryan M. is getting even more tanked than he probably was when he got out of the limo! It's hilarious in the way that people I would despise if I encountered them in real life sometimes are. He goes on and on about how he's drinking straight Fireball whiskey and he's so "horned up!" All of the other guys get judgy and  holier-than-thou, clutching their pearls, saying "Oh, my! I believe that gentlemen has over-indulged! I would NEVER!" I'll admit that this is neither the time nor place, but don't act like you're Carrie Nation (I Googled "famous prohibitionists").

Ryan M. gets more awesome when Shawn E. aka Ian Ziering pulls up in a hot tub car. It's exactly what it sounds like. A convertible sealed up to hold water and be driven around. This guy is 31, red-faced, puffy, Canadian and calls himself an Amateur Sex Therapist, which is the Canadian way of saying he'll watch you have sex for free and he has to introduce himself to his neighbors when he moves. While the ladies are cooing over the "car pool" Ryan M. says what we're all thinking, "That car sucks!" Text does Ryan's delivery no justice. When Shawn E. says, "OK, buddy, we'll talk inside," Ryan fires back a simple but brilliant, "No we won't!" I mean, I'm still laughing at his inflection. It's perfect. Kaitlyn says Ryan M. would get the Worst Impression rose, which I'm suggesting they actually introduce next season.

FINALLY, the parade of dudes ends with ANOTHER Ryan in a cupcake car. We still have another hour of this?! TWO if you count Tuesday!

Inside, Kaitlyn is her usual self and opens with a joke. Britt Britt does not approve. This first huddle is a chance to say what you're about and say stuff like "right reasons" and "journey," NOT do stand up. Britt implies that this proves Kaitlyn is not serious about this process.

Both start connecting with guys in that usual first night cocktail party kind of way. Britt pretends she likes kids. She regurgitates some mumbo jumbo back to Tony the Healer. Somedude asks Kaitlyn about her tattoos. She's so excited to talk about them because Chris Soules NEVER asked her about them. Yeah, they're your run-of-the-mill bird tattoo. Like, 8  out of 10 girls your age have them. Mark McGrath has them! Google Mark McGrath bird tattoo right now if you don't believe me.

Elsewhere, Ian Ziering confronts Ryan M. about disrespecting his entrance and once again Ryan M. delivers the goods. Ryan has no memory of the event but assures Shawn E. that he DOES suck. "Everything about you." Shawn E. can tell when he's bested and starts to walk off. Ryan M. still wants to know what he's talking about and tries to turn him back around by grabbing his shoulder. At this point a dude must say what Ian Ziering says, "Don't lay a hand on me ever again." Any chance of an actual physical altercation is quickly extinguished by Shawn who runs off sarcastically saying he's scared of Ryan, which looks exactly the same as if he were actually scared... because he is.

Any entertainment in this episode came strictly from Ryan. Without him it would've been two boring hours. He does a striptease, gets in the pool in his undies, walks around the house mostly naked and dripping wet. Some dudes try to ask him what the deal with Shawn E. was and Ryan comes back with the hilariously untrue, "I've never had a problem with anybody before..." being sure to add, "but that guy sucks." His use of the word "sucks" has reinvigorated me. I feel like I've never said it before. It's like a whole new word with gravitas it's never had before.

But, Ryan, who is still HORNED UP!, starts getting handsy and grabby with Kaitlyn, at one point holding her on the couch by her face. He steps over the line, however, when he smacks Kaitlyn's ass. That's when a giant bodyguard I've nicknamed Uncle Vito informs Ryan he's been called to the Dean's office. Chris Harrison tries his best to add a little weight to the situation by saying stuff like "it's obvious you're not here for sincere reasons." Are those like "right reasons?" Why did he say it that way? But, Ryan simply does not care. He got a night of free drinks and that's a win in his book. Also, as it's been revealed, he's the ex-boyfriend of Juan Pablo's season's winner Nikki, so he was a plant all along.

After 15 minutes of vote rose counting, big surprise we have to wait until night TWO to find out who the dude's chose. Oh, and don't worry, Ryan's vote won't count because he just threw a flower at the wall and walked out of the voting room.

Murphy's Blachelor Blog: After the Final Rose

Not too much to say about After the Final Rose. What a nice change that is from the LAST Bachelor. Even the shockingest shock that ever shocked they teased for three hours didn't turn out to be a big deal.

CH hits Chris early on with a great question. As Mama Soules said in the finale, the whole thing really was up to Becca. So, what if Becca WAS ready and said "I love you, moving van will be there Monday." Chris nails it and says, "There were a lot of 'what ifs'" in this experience and he's not looking back, he's ready to move forward. He's comfortable lying like this because Whitney told him she ONLY watched the parts of the show she was on. Anyone believe that?

When Becca comes out, everything still seems cool. She wasn't ready for it to end, but not ready for a proposal. What she is ready for after the experience is finding love, because I guess she has some inkling of what that is now. Chris tells CH his feelings for Becca were never about "the chase" of what his brother-in-law called the "girl at the bar no one can go up and talk to."

When Whitney makes her big debut, it's the same ol' "we don't have to be secret anymore" stuff. Chris reveals a little too much about how he wanted to marry someone exactly like sisters, like, for instance, his sisters. Hey, Iowa has rednecks too. Speaking of which, we get an extended post-engagement scene where Chris and Whitney talk extensively about making babies with Chris' parents. This is probably pretty normal farm talk. Like they are talking about planting crops or putting up fences. "Well, I reckon you'll want to get started sirin' before March, else the birthin' interfere with the harvest."

After her stupid/profound non-answer to being invited to Bachelor in Paradise last week, Ashley S. sort of commits to showing up.

Jimmy Kimmel shows up to deliver us from boredom and asks all the questions we're not supposed to want to know as viewers, like, "Are you making love regularly?" He also gives them something they can use on that "horrible farm you're moving too," a cow named Juan Pablo. CH's makes an "Iss OK" joke that goes criminally overlooked. 

So, that shocking moment? Just like Chris, Bachelor Nation and Producer Nation couldn't decide who they wanted to be the next Bachelorette: Britt Britt (smattering of applause) or Kaitlyn (deafening applause). I think the producers assumed the audience would be as split as we all supposedly are. Britt? There are people who think Britt would be a good Bachelorette? Well, anyway the twisty twist is that Britt AND Kaitlyn are the next Bachelorettes. There will be TWO Bachelorettes for the first time in Bachelorette history. Of course, longtime viewers will remember they did this same thing for season 6 of The Bachelor in 2004. I guess the producers also expected the announcement to take a hell of a lot longer because Britt and Kaitlyn stand there laughing awkwardly while CH STRETCHES for time asking each of them alternately "What do you think of this?" "What do you expect?" "What do you think of this?" "What do you expect?" All we can really expect right now is for the 25 men to choose which one of them gets to be The Bachelorette on the first episode and then the rest of the episodes to be like every other season. 

Until then, I'll try to keep this blog updated with interesting things... and see you in paradise!

Murphy's Blachelor Blog: The Finale

Two nurse enter. One nurse leave.

It's The Bachelor fin-ah-lay as Chris Harrison (CH) keeps saying in the live cut-ins from the After the Final Rose studios. Sometimes these are just people clapping into commercial, sometimes they are just a chance for CH to spout more hyperbole about this being the "wildest season," or about the "shocking" twist coming that the "whole country will be talking about tomorrow," or how the studio in which everyone is sitting is "standing room only."

When we do finally jump in, Whitney is up first to meet the fam in Arlington, IA. She's planning on telling one or all of them that she's in love with Chris. Whitney is personable and outgoing, which makes everyone comfortable immediately. She gives a toast at lunch that even brings dear ol' dad to tears. As my wife Sara said, "if you make dad cry, you've won."

In her final interview with Chris' sisters they continue to harp on making sure the women are ready to move to Arlington (pop: -3). Whitney says she'd move there with "no hesitation." Chris' sisters can't imagine anyone being better than Whitney for Chris. He has a tough time explaining to his sisters the difference between the two relationships, but it's pretty clear to me. Whitney and Becca represent the two things men love, the sure thing (Whit) and the chase (Becca). It's something that CH and one of Chris' bros will also point out later on. Chris' explanation about what he loves about Becca is stumbling and mumbling, but he's very straightforward about Whitney. Chris has an equally tough time explaining what he loves about Becca to the boyz in the fam.

Whitney, having already put dad in tears, also makes quick work of Mama Soules. How could a mom say "no" to someone who wants to call her "mom?" She's sold.

Later on Everybody Loves Whitney, the family's expectations are unsurprisingly low as Becca comes to visit. She starts winning them over with some killer Arlington humor. During Becca's sister interview (sisterview?) she tells them she wouldn't move to Iowa right away, they'd do the long-distance thing until she's sure he's the one. The sisters tell Chris he needs to push her a little to get some answers and get past their relationship hurdles. 

Those hurdles of course are what's known as "rational thought." I get so immersed in the world of the show that when someone makes it seem like they are not take-a-bullet-for-you in love with someone after 4 weeks, it seems irrational. When Becca says she's not ready for the relationship to end but she's not ready for a proposal, that's a perfectly rational place to be after a month or two! But, inside the physics of the show, it's a problem.

It's also very diplomatic and political of Becca to put it that way. It's the kind of response you expect after asking anyone these days if they're running for President. Becca is equally political when talking about Whitney to Mama Soules. She sort of paints Whitney as blindly rushing in to the relationship. "She's ready to get married, have babies, move here," as if Whitney would marry anything that's breathing and move to where it is. 

Mama Soules hits the nail on the head when she tells Becca whoever Chris ends up with is up to her. Becca just has to say the word. Her last chance is during her last date with Chris in the romantic Al Capone Suite in the nicest hotel they could find in Dubuque. She tells Chris she doesn't know why she's not in love. She won't put anything on a timeline when he asks where she wants to be in 5 years. This is a classic committophobe line, I know because I still use it to this day. It's a defense mechanism, but is also super-realistic. Sure I can tell you where I'd like to be in 5 years, but if it's 1 or 10 or 50 that's fine too. You don't have to compare when you achieve your hopes and dreams to when anyone else achieves theirs. 

But, I digress. Becca is noncommittal because she's in uncharted territory. Even when talking to Mama Soules she kept describing the feelings and actions of someone who is in love, but they were alien feelings to her. She's never been this close to a guy before. Chris seems mostly satisfied after their talk, but still obviously has no idea what he's going to do. Take a chance on Becca's potential or bet on Whitney's sure thing?

Whitney's last date- Wait. That was really Becca's whole last date? A latenight chat with Chris in the Al Capone Suite? Whitney gets to go harvesting with Chris and his dad in some of his expensive farm equipment. She goes on a tour of Arlington with Chris that sounds like when Mufasa tells Simba what makes up the Pride Lands in The Lion King. "Look, Whitney, everything the light touches is our kingdom," (a joke I'm sure I also made here when Chris took Andi to Arlington). Chris takes Whitney to his house, which looks considerably better decorated since Andi was there. Later at their nighttime date (How long is this date? See what a raw deal Becca got?!), Chris asks Whitney what makes her so certain he's the one. She gives some pretty good answers about it being unspoken, "It just is," how comfortable she is around him. Chris says, "Everything you said, I reciprocate," which is as close as he's contractually able to get to saying "I love you," at this point. He does add a "no matter what happens," as the date comes to a close, which must have been the producers trying to inject at least a little drama.

The day of begins, as always, with a montage of contemplative stares as Chris gets ready and the women think "God, I wish I was in the Bahamas." Chris meets with Neil Lane who makes no bones about hating every second he's forced to be in the desolate wasteland of Iowa. 

CH meets up with Chris at the barn he was born in and the first limo pulls up. Out steps...

Becca. Chris gives her the classic "You're not really ready" dodge. Becca seems fine with the situation. I don't doubt that she and Chris both wanted it to happen, and maybe on a long enough timeline (sorry, Becca!) it would have, but wanting it to happen just wasn't enough.

That means Whitney is up next. She's shaking and CH tries to attribute it to nerves, but we know it's because she's wearing nothing but a gown in negative temperatures and the sun is setting on the frozen tundra of Siberia's sister city, Arlington, Iowa (pop: -32F). Of course, Whitney starts talking immediately and forever. Eventually Chris says "I love you," proposal, final rose, "We're engaged!" etc. But, what happens AFTER the Final Rose???
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