Me, Myself & Baby I

Out of the mouths of babes

The Guys Versus Themselves Versus Bachelorette Emily, and Why Ryan Needs To Go NOW

On Monday nights, not only do I watch my guilty pleasure, The Bachelorette, but I simultaneously participate in a Facebook Bachelorette “thread” organized by a college friend’s brother.  Mary-Alice, one of the thread participants, who makes such insightful, and often snarky comments on the thread, is recapping her feelings—without holding anything back– on last night’s episode of The Bachelorette in Bermuda.

Mary-Alice Farina is a former academic who watches the Bachelor franchise nonetheless. She writes for a small Internet publishing company, and is also pursuing a fledgling acting career. She loves to tweet and you should follow her at ‏@mafalicious.

This season has already seen more male tears and near fights than any other in recent years… and we’re just getting warmed up. Chalk it up to the months (possibly even years) of anticipation these guys have endured to meet Emily Maynard, the striking beauty with an adorable personality. She is the legendary fairy tale princess of reality television: beautiful, kind, rich (the late father of her child was NASCAR royalty), and somewhat ensnared by the tragic hand of cards she was dealt.

Enter her would be Prince Charmings.  Since day one, they have understood how high the stakes are. They have understood that megababes like Emily don’t usually have sweet personalities made wise by tragic pasts. They have understood that there can only be one victor, and that the losers aren’t losing an average girl.  Emilys are not a dime a dozen.

So the warring factions have formed. Young versus old, naïve versus mature, fathers versus non-fathers, muscle-heads versus “dainty boys”(as one particularly nauseating contestant, Ryan, once remarked). So far, Emily seems to prefer the dainty boy-father-mature intersection of these cadres.

This weeks’ episode of The Bachelorette opens to an exciting announcement by Chris Harrison. “Pack your bags boys, plane leaves in 2 hours for your journey around the world!”

Emily awaits the muscle-bound gaggle in Bermuda, and we’re suddenly whisked away to the Caribbean and inundated with idyllic images of her and little Ricky, twirling around on hills in the sun.

Dramatic motorcycle sound effects and hell-raising music establish the mood for the guys’ big entrance. We finally see them on a pack of… mopeds. Ok, so they’re not quite as dangerous as they sounded.

After they settle into their palatial beachfront digs, Arie reads off the first date card. It’s Doug, and Emily says “Let our senses lead the way.”

Mushroom farmer Alejandro is getting nervous. He hasn’t had a one-on-one date with Emily yet and he’s anxious to get to know her.

Arie wants “the football team to disband, get down to the real stuff, not the bromance.”

The guys start teasing Doug a bit, and in his typically hypersensitive way (remember the poolside confrontation with Kalon?) Doug gets annoyed by Arie’s teasing and says “just let it go, bro, seriously.” He seems close to getting in Arie’s face when Emily enters.

She can tell something is awry: “I walk into the room and I feel tension. It was just a weird vibe. Everyone was really serious.”

We cut to Arie’s confessional again after Emily whisks Doug out of the room. “Doug was like the Hulk. ‘Doug angry, Doug smash! Doug sad,’” he jokes.

Emily waxes effusive for Doug in her voiceover as the date begins, the couple strolling arm in arm throughout the town. “He is so nice and so good-looking. I don’t think there is anyone I’d rather spend the day with.  We have such a connection, with him being a father. We get each other. He’s so positive, the conversation’s easy.”

Doug, the 33-year-old father of son Austin, just seems to get more and more perfect. His parenting philosophy? “I wanted to show him that one person could change the world so I started a charity to show him (son Austin).” Emily shakes her head in disbelief. “Of course you did,” she marvels.

Wary Emily, unlike so many stars of this show in the past, gets right to the tough questions. As she grills Doug, seemingly hoping to drudge up some dirt, the best he can do is to say his ex-girlfriend didn’t like how much time he spent with his son and that he didn’t wash her car enough.  Emily was extremely skeptical of this, insisting he must have more obvious flaws than that. When he turns the tables and asks her the same thing, all she can say is “I don’t work out and sometimes I wear my pajamas to the store.” She realizes that being put on the spot that way is nerve-wracking. He does admit, to her satisfaction, “you actually caught me getting grouchy. I had just scolded them all!” Emily mentions being happy he felt comfortable enough to tell her that.

Twenty minutes in, the group date card arrives: Charlie, Ryan, Chris, Jeff, Sean, Arie, Travis and Kalon will be on this epically huge group date.

We cut back to the date with Emily and Doug. “I have not kissed a girl in months and months. I move pretty slow. I don’t ever make the first move. Ever.” A strange moment of inaction follows, and we have to imagine this is a foreshadowing of her eventual dissatisfaction with his hesitation.

It’s hard to get a good read on Doug. On the one hand, he is sweet, humble, devoted and altruistic. On the other hand, we’ve seen very off-putting flashes of temper brought about by what seems to be an extreme over-sensitivity.

The group date turns out to be a farce: the guys have to break into two teams and  race in sailboats to win a chance to spend the day with Emily.

Twenty minutes in, the group date card arrives: Charlie,Ryan, Chris, Jeff, Sean, Arie, Travis and Kalon will be on this epically hugegroup date.

We cut back to the date with Emily and Doug. “I have not kissed a girl in months and months. I move pretty slow. I don’t ever make the first move. Ever.” A strange moment of inaction follows, and we have to imagine this is a foreshadowing of her eventual dissatisfaction with his hesitation.

It’s hard to get a good read on Doug. On the one hand, he is sweet, humble, devoted and altruistic. On the other hand, we’ve seen very off-putting flashes of temper brought about by what seems to be an extreme over-sensitivity.

The group date turns out to be a farce: the guys have to break into two teams and race in sailboats to win a chance to spend the day with Emily.

Emily, watching, admits “To be honest, I hate watching guys compete for me…”  When the yellow team wins, Charlie and Sean are devastated.  The guys may even be shedding a tear or two. Emily notices. “It was hard for me to celebrate with the yellow team because the red team looked so sad,” she says.

As the red team drinks some victory champagne with Emily, Ryan puts his foot in his mouth, referring to Emily as a “beautiful trophy(possibly wife).” Emily is not amused, but ever graceful, plays it off.

She takes a couple of the guys onto the beach for some private time. Arie is first, establishing himself as well ahead of the pack in terms of private time spent with Emily. “I missed you,” he says softly, followed by a slightly awkward kiss. In confessional he admits (in a non-annoying way, we thought) “I’m so confident by what I have with Emily that I’m not threatened at all by anyone in he house.”

Jef is next to go to the beach with Emily. We hear him in an interview getting more nervous. “I want to matter to her, to mean something.”

Emily wants a kiss at the end of their beach time, but Jef is clearly stalling. He’s contemplating it, but resists the urge. Still, his sincerity is endearing.

Ryan gets some alone time next, and proceeds to alienate 50%of his female audience (and possibly Emily) with a narcissistic speech that rivals last season’s Bentley. He claims to have “a very mature approach to relationships. I’m not here to impress you but to make an impression on you.”  When she gets into her “tough question” mode, he interrupts her, hung up on the idea of how pretty their children would be. We’d have pretty kids,” he repeats at least 4 times, impressing upon us his utter narcissism. As if it weren’t despicable enough that he keeps repeating how good-looking, athletic and special he finds himself, he seems to be more concerned with using Emily as a tool to promulgate his superior genes than getting to know her. He is compelled to put her down, saying “at least you’re smart enough to know you’re not necessarily worthy of this attention just because you’re here. So why are you worthy?”

I was shuddering so much after that last line that I nearly lost my dinner. And unbelievably – Ryan actually gets worse.

Emily isn’t falling for it, thank God: “I feel like he’s judging me,” she says as she expresses her general wariness.

Emily gives Jef the group date rose, which Ryan sees as directly relating to their conversation. He actually thinks that Emily made this decision based on him, and calls it a “safe move,” because she knew giving it to Arie would upset him.

We move next to a double date with John and Nate in a cool cave. But Emily can’t help but admitting that it’s “just really awkward all around.”

The music shuts off, you can hear a pin drop. Jake talks about his family and gets choked up. She ultimately lets Jake go in favor of John, citing John’s seeming maturity and confidence as a reason to favor their chances.

With 45 minutes remaining, the dates are over and it’s cocktail hour. We catch a glimpse of Emily and Ricki going over Ricki’s lessons, as it seems the little one has a tutor for her studies on the road.

Alejandro still hasn’t had a date this week and feels he hasn’t had any opportunity to show Emily who he is.

It’s cocktail hour and Ryan has stolen Emily again. Foreboding thunder claps (the producers clearly want us to hate this guy, as they should) as Ryan and Emily talk. Arie takes the chance and interrupts Ryan’s private time, urged on by the other guys.

When Arie steps in, Ryan takes it in stride but in his narcissistic way, assumes it’s out of insecurity and jealousy rather than to keep Emily away from a douchebag (Arie’s admitted motivation).

Ryan then, in private fireside conversation, makes the ultimate reality dating show misstep: he reveals to one of the other guys that is “involved in media back home” and that he’d like this to be a career-making fame-booster. In his testimonials he fancies himself on a journey of which Emily is just a small stepping stone. “I like Emily,” he says, “but to be perfectly honest, I feel called to something bigger.”

Doug and Ryan bond in a transparently insecure way about their “security” in their age and their “maturity.”

Chris, the 25-year old kettle that is ready to boil over, takes Emily outside to make it clear to her that he is ready to be a father and he is mature… He inexplicably seems to feel that Doug is his threat.

He then cites a commitment to “being real” when he takes Doug outside to spout utter nonsense at him. Chris, stammering to Doug: “You’re just… over the top humble! I just don’t believe you. The way you act the way you … ARE! Just pisses me off!” Chris is not making a great case for his maturity.

Emily sits down to speak with the other Chris, host Chris.  She rightfully points out that Doug and Ryan seem to start the drama. She’s as giddy as a schoolgirl when Chris brings up Arie… and she admits it. Emily’s spidey sense is tingling in regards to Ryan (thank God!). She says “he seems to think he’s got me wrapped around his finger, but I’m onto him.”

Head injury Charlie does not receive a rose, which comes as something of a surprise. Pony tail Michael also goes home. Both cry, sending the tally of criers who went home this week up to 4. And proving once again that beauty makes people cry, and that beautiful Emily does not seem terribly attracted to more emotive men.

We get a preview of next week when someone allegedly makes a comment about little Ricki being “baggage.” Emily loses her temper, becoming so angry that she swears and elaborates gory violent fantasies. We can only hope the idiot in question is loose-lipped Ryan revealing his true colors, and that he goes home as a result.

Advertisements

Single Post Navigation

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: