"The Bachelorette" Rose Rundown: Hannah electrocuted dudes for our amusement
Memorial Day: a solemn date meant for thought, for reflection and for watching a bunch of bros strap electrodes just north of their nether regions and electrocute themselves for love and attention.
If that sounds like a lot, that's merely scratching the surface of this week's episode of "The Bachelorette." There were lies, accusations, a llama, a favorite floundering, DRAMATIC CHICKEN NUGGET EATING, spy games, nipple clamps, more emotional stories than a "Chicken Soup for the Soul" book and also literal chicken soup. It was such a busy week that Hannah got sent to the hospital trying to process it all. Or maybe she suffered from bro-verexposure. This is definitely beyond what is typically recommended by doctors.
Hopefully the anonymous bro count will go down this week, with the help of the first group date of the episode featuring growing rivals Mike and Cam – the latter who started his run on the show doing the world's worst Macklemore impression and managed to find new ways to hemorrhage dignity AFTER that. Everyone's waiting for him to be a douche – or, as he calls it, "be bold" – at some point on the date, one that takes Hannah and the bros off to a birthing class taught by actress Jenny Mollen and "American Pie" star Jason Biggs, who was available. They begin things with a pop quiz about the female anatomy – and this may surprise you, but Cam does not perform well. He thinks the gestation time for a human baby is two weeks, which should probably be grounds for immediate elimination from a dating show and maybe for dating, period. Meanwhile, Jed does well because of course Jed does well.
On to round two of the Jason Biggs's birthing challenge (didn't expect to type that ever!), which is taking care of a robo-baby. Some fellas perform well. Some hold their babies like footballs. And then there's John Paul Jones, who gives his baby an upside down shake like he's rooting around for loose change. PROMISING! Always want a man who treats a baby like a Shake Weight. To add to the drama, Hannah makes the dudes take their shirts off and clips clothespins to their nips to simulate a feeding baby.
But if they thought that was painful, Hannah has one last test: the labor simulator, aka a whole lot of electricity blasted north of the gonads. Kevin with the Resting Serial Killer Face impressively goes first – and it doesn't go well. (Maybe it'll pay off for him later.) But at least he, as well as just about everyone else, still leave with their dignities intact. Everyone ... but John Paul Jones, who looks like he's orgasming and seeing a ghost at the same time. For reference, that looks like this:
After their torture session, it's off to the cocktail party where Cam is looking like the sweatiest, weaseliest dude in the room. And if you think that's foreshadowing, YOU WOULD BE CORRECT. Mike attempts to tell Hannah the first of many, many, many tragic stories in this episode – his is one of the most difficult, talking about a miscarriage from a past relationship that made today's baby-focused fun tough to cope with. It's a emotional thing to discuss and OH WOULD YOU LOOK AT THAT HERE'S CAM! Cam attempts to cut in not once, not twice, not thrice, but four separate times – each time saying he has something VERY important he MUST tell Hannah. And what is his very important and sad story that must get to Hannah's ears? Cam quit his job to come onto the show. Wow, a real punch to the tear ducts you've delivered, Cam. Move aside, first 10 minutes of "Up."
Thankfully, karma was invited on this group date as Jonathan gives Cam a taste of his own medicine and interrupts his time with Hannah, aggressively blocking him from stalling or stealing any more time with her. It's all very satisfying – though not as satisfying, apparently, as a 10-piece chicken nugget meal:
A-grade group date for John Paul Jones, as far as memes go. As far as getting roses, however, not so much as the carnation goes to Mike after Hannah talks about how "being bold can be shown in many different ways." OOOH AND SO CAN TOSSING SHADE. Cam's fine though, as he busts out a classic "I'm not mad; actually I'm laughing" while his face says "I'm plotting murder." Aw, poor Kevin; that's his thing!
Off to the week's solo date, which goes to Little Baby Connor. The card says that the two will go sailing, but unfortunately Hannah gets a rough case of the ... something, and must go to the hospital to snag an IV of fluids and ten ccs of dramatic reality show footage. Bad news, Connor: You get one of the first date cancellation cards I've seen on the show. But good news, Connor: It also says to come over, hang at her hotel room and chat with her while she's recuperating. So he sweetly grabs some flowers and chicken noodle soup from the market, and arrives to what at first looks like a new episode of "To Catch a Predator" as Connor awkwardly pokes around the room looking for Hannah. I half-expected Chris Hansen to pop out from behind a corner saying, "Why don't you pour me a bowl of soup?"
But no, he finds Hannah, and what ensues is ... an actually sweet, nice, human date, with the two talking together in bed and getting to know one another. (Cue tragic story #17 of the episode.) Every now and then, "The Bachelorette" stumbles into something resembling an actual connection during an actual relationship moment – and their date was exactly that. This seemed like an actual thing two people in love, or even just on the cusp of possibly being in love, would do, and I found it pretty cute – a rarity on this show. Unfortunately, it must come to an end as Hannah is battling, I don't know, Bro Poisoning – and in the process forgets about dishing out a rose. Connor doesn't mind; in fact, he actually does the gifting as, before he leaves, he scatters a bunch of Post-It notes around Hannah's hotel room, each with a different thing that he finds charming and lovely about her. Connor, baby, you did great.
Back at the mansion, Connor explains to the rest of the dudes how their date went – and how Hannah had to go to the hospital, which very much concerns Dr. Luke P. "WAS SHE COUGHING!?" he very sternly asks, as if he's concerned she has Movie Sickness, coughing into a handkerchief only to see little splotches of blood and realizing she's got the consumption. If only you were there, Luke P., to bench press while she's sick in bed. That would make everything better. After Dr. Luke P. gets all of Hannah's health information, he then awkwardly asks Connor ... what she was wearing? Yeah, she was wearing an iron lung, dude; picture that, you creep. Luke was already annoyingly insincere this season, but now he's entering full-on stalker territory.
Thankfully, Hannah quickly gets better – and amends something she forgot during Connor's visit: a rose. So she summons Connor back and gives him a little bonus rose ceremony – plus the Requisite Bachelorette Surprise Concert, which isn't a country act but instead Lukas Graham, who you may remember from that god awful song "7 Years." Connor's a fan, though – or at least a producer told him to be as he happens to know exactly who he's listening to and what song they're singing. Indeed, what a magical moment dancing with Hannah to Lukas Graham's song, "Love Someone," off their album "3 (The Purple Album)," released in October of 2018 on Warner Bros records. Very natural.
After Tyler G. – aka the guy with the jawline you could get a paper cut from – leaves in a way not interesting enough to show on television, Hannah summons a bunch of guys for the next group date: a photo shoot, complete with models. But it's a trick! The models are not sexy ladies like the guys assumed but adorable animals – and this is not actually a date but some really intense product placement for "The Secret Life of Pets 2." The marketing department really got their money's worth; they say the name about a dozen times and even drop the tagline. I'm amazed the date didn't end with everyone cuddling up in a theater and watching the movie. (In theaters June 7! Preorder tickets now on Fandango! Enjoy it with a large popcorn and a Pepsi!)
Sorry, I'm letting the product placement get in the way of the true star of this date: Detective Demi, Private Eye! Indeed, America's favorite future "Bachelor in Paradise" star holes up yet again in a spy room to snoop on the guys as they interact with two flirty women she hired to play animal assistants and makeup designers. Would the bros fall for the trap? Amazingly, Grant the unemployed open-mouth chewer from night one passes with flying colors. Unfortunately so does Luke P. – but I appreciate the effort, Demi, to end our national Luke P. nightmare.
Luckily, Brick Wall In A Suit starts sabotaging himself, getting exceptionally possessive and becoming that guy who doesn't let his girlfriend go out with her friends without him tagging along and making sure she's not cheating or flirting. He sees Hannah taking cute photos with Peter the Pilot, and he decides he wants in on that too – so he makes her stay for a few more photos of him, what else, doing push-ups while she, I don't know, is amazed or something. Hard pass. Then he wants to walk her to her dressing room, which is uncomfortable as hell. Later at the date's reception, she explains that she reads all of this as cocky behavior, that he's overly confident that he's the only one she has a connection with and getting far too defensive of her. I think that he's wildly insecure, but we both come to the same final conclusion: He's gotta cut this crap out.
And in an incredible twist nobody saw coming, he doesn't.
Instead, Luke P. gets even more clingy and controlling, desperately trying to get more time with Hannah – who has clearly had enough and actually rejects his attempts to steal her away multiple times. And best of all, the thing that seems to annoy Luke P. the most is that he didn't get to talk during their solo time. Yes, his complaint through all of this is basically that Hannah talked too much. GLAD YOU LISTENED SO WELL; YOU SEEM LIKE A HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP PARTNER! Plus, nothing he could've said would be more important than Peter the Pilot's story about how his parents fell in love thanks to his dad's butt. Obviously the butt story (and Peter too) get the rose.
Luke P.'s reign atop the douchebag standings for the week wouldn't last long, however, as Cam still exists. Hannah changes out the cocktail party for a tailgate because we need our weekly "Roll Tide" reference – did you know she's from Bama?! – but that doesn't stop Cam from wanting to bum everybody out. Beforehand, he tells the guys that he HAS to talk to Hannah about something VERY important and sad (even more tragic than you quitting your job for a reality show?) so if he could get first dibs on Hannah alone time, that would be swell. And literally everybody in the room just laughs at Bold Cam begging for mercy from the guys he's screwed over for the past two weeks. No YouTube video of cutting kinetic sand or watching perfect swirls get made could be this satisfying.
While the rest of the guys are playing football on the driveway and just begging for scraped knees and concussions, Cam does eventually get his alone time with Hannah for his very sad story. And it is the sad story to end all sad stories: He had to have surgery to prevent losing a limb and also his grandmother died right before that, then there was another surgery, but he also had a 10-month-old puppy that he had to rehome. I was half waiting for him to say he was drafted into the Vietnam War, and when he came home, his sweetheart was with somebody else because she thought he had died. And also his father built a baseball diamond in his backyard so he could play catch with his ghost.
It's just all way too much – and according to Mike, it's all a lie, an attempt to get a pity rose. Now, we never heard Cam say that, so it's quite possible Mike's just trying to get Cam axed off the show for being annoying and that it's not fake at all. On the other hand ... the story sounds fake. And also, bad timing, Cam; nobody wants to hear about dead grandparents and sad puppies at a tailgate party.
Whether it was the crappy timing, the dubiousness of the story, the fact that he raps or just ... everything about his presence on the show, Cam doesn't get a rose at the evening's ceremony. Instead, the final rose of the night goes to ...Resting Serial Killer Face Kevin. I knew going first in the labor simulator was going to pay off for him! Cam leaves along with Jonathan and some guy named Joey who was apparently there this whole time. But more importantly, Jed doesn't, snagging the night's first rose. He's my bet on the final winner right now. He's handsome. He sings country music. He's Southern. Based on the female anatomy pop quiz, he knows how the female body works – which you think would be a prerequisite, but ask Cam about that! He's my leader in the clubhouse at this point.
Unfortunately, Luke P. also gets a rose, meaning he'll be back next week. Hopefully the labor simulator will be too, then.
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