Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Men Break Man-Code

The Men (or Women) Tell All episode is great in theory, not usually so good in practice. A large part of the show is taken up with excess filler on Trista & Ryan and reunions so there’s not much drama.

I could have sworn last week they advertised pretty much the same thing. Thankfully, we got the first honest-to-goodness Men Tell All episode in series history. This was a good one. Even without Wes, who unfortunately “couldn’t make it here tonight” and Reid, who “wasn’t able to make it due to a prior engagement.” ABC, in their never-ending quest to give away every possible surprise, showed in the very last scene of the night an upcoming clip from the Final Rose episode next week where we see Reid fondling an engagement ring. Get it? Get it? Chris said he had a “prior engagement”. Do we have to spell it out for you people?!

But yes, this was a good one tonight. The guys let it all hang out. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

The show starts with Chris throwing to a recorded interview with Jillian, even though Jillian will come out later and answer more questions. It was basically rehashing everything we already know about how she feels about everyone. She said that she didn’t care about Tanner P’s foot fetish. “If the worst thing that I had to deal with is that somebody wanted to suck on my toes, I don’t care.” Okay. But what if there’s more? Maybe toe sucking is a gateway fetish. What then, huh? Jillian doesn’t get red flags very well.

But she did admit to becoming somewhat fixated on her own feet since meeting Tanner. She’s grown uncomfortable about her second toe being longer than her big toe and wouldn’t mind some toe surgery. But no plastic surgery on her schnozz, thank you very much. She likes her proboscis. And so do I. I read a lot of armchair Romeos putting Jillian down, but she’s a fine specimen of a woman and they should be so lucky to be with such a gal.

About her rope date with Kiptyn, Jill laughed so hard she said, holding her fingers together, “I was thisclose to peeing my pants.” What, was there dribble? How does she know?

She talked about her initial attraction with the villain of the evening, Wes. She said he was that country singer with tattoos that wants to sit by the fire and drink beer and that’s what she had been looking for. She always thought she’d marry that kind of honky-tonk cowboy. Thank God she got that fairy tale out of her system.

Part of what made this episode so good was the previously unseen footage. Usually it’s all recap we’ve seen all season. There was some of that, but a good chunk of new stuff that should give you a hint at how we’re all manipulated in our emotions.

We saw Special K of the Harlem Globetrotters giving her relationship advice. He didn’t like Kiptyn because he cheated in basketball. Basketball is like life, you see, so if he'd cheat in hoops, ipso facto he'd cheat in life. Now, I'm a big fan of the Globies so I know full well they cheat like hell! You can't pull down your opponents' shorts. I know that for a fact. And they do that all the time. He did, however, give the thumbs up to psycho David. Which goes to prove one thing: you can take the advice of a Globetrotter, but you can' t use it. Unless you live in Bizarro world. Still, had we seen this clip at the time, we might have different opinions of the two men.

We saw Ed hammered in Vancouver. Plastered, you might say. Shit-faced, if you will. Jillian, who’s probably been inebriated once or twice in her life, thought it was endearing. He was a happy, funny drunk. If they end up together, I’m sure they’ll have lots of nights fighting over who gets to vomit in the toilet and who has to use the sink. Maybe we’ll even see them on a future episode of Cops!

We saw Reid try hula dancing in Hawaii. I had two thoughts: 1. I like Reid even more knowing that he doesn’t like to dance at all, and 2. those poor hula dancers probably all huddled around the TV to see themselves when the Hawaii episode aired only to be disappointed. Finally they got a glimpse.

We saw Saint Kiptyn woking with his charity, Stand Up For Kids, which I guess pits troubled children with stand up comedians, or something like that. Had we seen that, who wouldn’t be cheering for Kiptyn? Why would they edit that out? They show us what they want us to see. Remember that, people.

Next came Jason and Molly. Was all that heartache worthwhile, Chris asks them? Do we even care? Now out of the spotlight, and with her man, she was able to let the blonde dye job fade. She just used it to collar her man. Molly’s actually a brunette, just like Melissa. “And ugly,” says the wife. Meow!

Jason dubs them M&M. Get it, Molly and Mesnick? Of course, it would have been that with Melissa, too, which makes me think the simpleton bachelor chose his finalists based on their initials.

Molly, it turns out, lives in Milwaukee while Jason is still in Seattle. But they vow to get married, making them only the second successful Bachelor couple, I do believe. Well, so far.

Jason is a big believer in kismet. Because Melissa is now happy and engaged, just like he and Molly, everything’s jake. The Simpleton had the line of the night: “You can’t mess with fate... If people have to point the finger at me, and it caused happiness, I’ll take the blame.”

Finally, it’s some quality time with the jilted lovers. We see a drama reel and get to hear some good comments on Jake that never aired. All the guys seem to resent Jake's perfectness. One of the fellas said, “I don’t think Jake’s even stepped on an ant.” We also learn that Robby the bartender drinks a lot. Why didn’t we know that? And we learn that David is “a ticking time bomb, an awful human.” No, wait, we already knew that.

Chris Harrison, who’s getting really good at this and showing his personality after years of being an automoton, says it’s like a buffet for a host. “Where do I start?”

They start in on Jake, who takes the “perfect” slags as a compliment. I was a little surprised at the vitriol aimed Jake’s way. Jesse the wine guy wanted Jake to be like the rest of them. Another guy, Mark, let Jake know that not one person in America thinks Mr. Perfect is the black sheep of his family just because he’s a pilot while his siblings are doctors. Tanner F said Jake “pulled a Mesnick”, which he defines as “when a grown man leans over a hotel railing and cries.” For future reference, when somebody gets national TV exposure and you still don't know who he is or anything about him, we can call that "pulling a Tanner F".

When Sasha piles on, Jake turns around and says, “Sasha, fuck you. How perfect is that?” Well, I gotta admit, it was the perfect squelch. That guy is just too perfect, it’s true.

Next up it’s David’s turn to have it out with Juan yet again. Because that never gets old. I remember after David was eliminated he was interviewed in the press and said how embarrassed he was at the way he acted on the show and that’s not how he is. I believed him. Fast-forward to tonight. His credibility is completely shot. He did himself no favours on this night. He looked as angry as ever. And crazier, thanks to the beard he was growing so women wouldn't recognize him from the show and flee in terror when they met him. A real ticking time bomb. Yowza.

Chris challenged David on his ridiculous Man-Code. David explained that it’s an unspoken set of rules. “I didn’t understand there were so many guys that didn’t understand that,” he said. Chris asked Juan, who you’ll recall is a foreigner, if he was aware of this Man-Code. The suave Argentinian said his definition of it meant being a gentleman, being a man, being an adult. “Getting drunk and beligerent and threatening people is not being a man.” Well said, I thought, but Tanner F. thought Juan was just trying to stir things up. If so, it was working because David was turning red and developing a facial tick. Seriously.

David wasn’t the only one pissed at Juan for not drinking and being one of the guys. They wondered why Juan didn’t explain himself. Drunk Robby sided with psychotic David. Why this was an issue was beyond me. And thankfully Chris spoke for many of us when he chimed in with, “Why would he have to explain it? Who gives a crap?!”

David really didn’t help himself out any. Trying to show the world that he’s not a menace 2 society, he said, “When I say I’m going to beat Juan’s ass, that just means I don’t like him.” Uh-huh. And then he says, “Everybody has a girl back home.” Keep talking, pal. David is a ass. [sic]

You see, when he says that, he means an ex-girlfriend. Part of Man-Code is knowing what he means when he speaks. And if you don’t, that’s because you just don’t get Man-Code. The first rule of Man-Code is understanding Man-Code. If you don’t understand it, that’s your problem, not ours.

After all this, we’re still not done with David! I told you this episode was a good one. He takes the hot seat across from Chris to answer some questions. Finally, his chance to show everyone he’s a decent, normal guy.

Just kidding!

Chris suggests that maybe David made Jillian feel a tad uncomfy on their date. David: “I wouldn’t say uncomfortable.” Chris reminds him of how he kept talking to Jillian about her “ass”. Even after weeks of reflection, and time to think about how he wants to present himself on this episode, David persists. “Complimenting a girl’s ass after a month? That’s a compliment.” He was absolutely flabbergasted that the women in the audience said they wouldn’t like to be told they have a great ass by a pyschotic madman.

When Chris suggested that maybe, just maybe, he read the signals wrong when he went in for a kiss, David would have none of it. “She put the signals out there and retracted it,” he said. It’s not on him.

Chris rightfully asks where in the Man-Code is the respect for women and looking out for them? “It’s hard to explain,” David starts. “We’re in a house with guys. It’s not a normal situation...” Juan makes an excellent point, saying they were all on the same boat and it didn’t seem to bother the rest of them. Of course Juan would say that. He doesn’t understand Man-Code.

Next up is Jake on the hot seat. The women there love him. He’s their knight in shining armour. Jake said he has had no second thoughts about revealing to Jillian that Wes had a girlfriend back home. David, showing a healthy respect for the fairer sex, says “You cried like a little girl.”

He takes a couple questions from the crowd and admits he will always have feelings for Jillian. And someone asked if he would accept if asked to be the next Bachelor. “As flattering as that is, that’s a decision I’d have to make when the time is right. It would truly be an honour, though.” What a perfect answer.

Then the Wes segment, even though he wasn’t there to defend himself. Just as well. Who needs him? It would have just been more vacant stares. Wes apparently told Tanner F. at some point, “Man, I got a girl back home. I wrote all these songs for her.” David defends Wes (surprise, surprise), saying Wes told him that while he did come on the show to promote his record, after a couple of days or weeks, it “got real”. Leave it to Juan, that Man-Code breaker, to bring up another great point. Wes certainly never let on that his feelings were “real” and seemed to not care a bit when he was let go.

Chris wanted somebody in the audience to speak on Wes’s behalf but there wasn’t one supporter in the place. Then, to close the segment, they run one last Wes montage, no doubt to show some supporters (hello Reality Steve!) that it wasn’t all a bad edit. In the montage, we hear Wes saying, “I got records to sell. I’m the hidden agenda guy... My manager joked to go in and get at least three roses... I’ll always have Jillian wrapped around my little finger, y’all.” And more. Even the clip in the limo where he said he was the only bachelor in history to make it to the final four with a girlfriend wasn’t clipped at the end the way it was when it first aired. It looked as if his comment really did end there. If he did, as he now says, add more at the end saying that notion was ridiculous, it was after a significant pause.

Wes is a jerk. Case closed.

Jillian finally arrived in studio to a standing ovation from her exes, although Robby was a little slow to stand. Could have been the alcohol. Jillian talked about watching the show along with us and finally learning of some of the backstory she never knew at the time. She said was proud of the way Juan dealt with the drama with David. David just shook his head in disbelief. Priceless.

Jake started to talk about the great date they had and wondered how things went so wrong, and Jillian just shut him down. She spoke directly and without any warmth saying that she didn’t want to string him along. Methinks Jake’s neverending feelings for Jillian just screeched to a halt. A perfect halt.

As for Wes, she said that sometimes your heart doesn’t lead you in the right direction, but she made the right decision in the end. “I needed to figure that out for myself,” she said. The thing is, dear Jill, you didn’t! It was figured out for you. Lord help you if Jake hadn’t given you some information to work with.

We end on a fart reel. Pthffffpt.

Whatever’s happened since the last day of filming, Jillian is extremely happy. Will it be Kiptyn? Will it be Ed? Or will it be Reid? I think we need a new poll!

Until next week.

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