Monday, February 8, 2010

Week Six: Ali pulls a rope-a-dope

Welcome back to our little corner of the vast Bachelor universe. Can you believe another week has come and gone?

First off, let’s recap last week’s poll. It was a runaway success for Dumb Divorced Tenley. She received 19 of the 29 votes (a whopping 65 percent). Now, granted, the wording in the question was a little different. I didn’t ask who your favourite was; I asked who the best match for Jake was. But I think the numbers would have been the same regardless. She’s a sweet, beautiful person, inside and out. At least, that’s what we’re seeing. We all know she has a lazy, jaded side to her persona. She didn’t even get her butt up off the couch when her husband came home from a hard day’s work. (And thanks for that info, now whenever my wife comes home she expects me to bound up and greet her at the door. Expects. Key word.)

Former Front Runner Ali was way back in second place, receiving 7 votes (24 percent). Which goes to show you people love to bitch and complain about contestants, but the contestants themselves should try to remain above the fray. Just be a sweet, easygoing (some would say lazy) angel like Tenley (or Jillian and Deanna before her) and you’re guaranteed at least a shot as the next Bachelorette. Back of the pack in the poll was Gia Pet, who had three fans out there. And no surprise, Spoiled Vienna received no love from my readers. Apparently her family has given up on this blog. Their loss.

One drawback to being on the west coast is the late start time, made even later because Monday is usually my basketball night. But thanks to the Winter Olympics here in Vancouver, our weekly run has been cancelled this month. So I’m able to watch the episode in real time and hopefully get this puppy up relatively quickly. Of course, those in the eastern time zones have already finished watching and I see some are already voting on last week’s poll. Doh! Hopefully they come back and revote when the new post comes up.

Okay, on with the show. We know (if upcoming highlights are to be believed) that tonight are the hometown visits, and Ali’s family is a potential disaster. At least I’m hoping. We also know there will be no rose ceremony this week. I have no idea why the producers decided to let us in on that. One anonymous commenter to this blog (pick a handle so at least I can differentiate between the various anonymous posters!) had a great take on it. At the rate he’s been booting women off the show, of course they need a catch-up episode or else this thing would be over too soon.

Here we go:

SEGMENT 1: The plane touches down in New York City, baby! It’s Gia time. She wears the tightest butt-hugging jeans I’ve ever seen. And she fills them out quite nicely. Not surprisingly given some of the photos I’ve seen of her. I also heard the self-proclaimed ugly duckling who has a hard time meeting guys has dated professional athletes. And not the kind of professional athletes who wind up as contestants on this series. Real major league ones. She dated Carl Pavano of the New York frikkin’ Yankees and Chris Campoli of the Ottawa Senators. Regular girls don’t date millionaire athletes. Her presence now smacks of a publicity stunt. The show shouldn’t take contestants whose agent contacts them. Jake is looking for a real-life partner, not a costar.

Jake tells her she doesn’t talk about her past relationships. He's curious. She says she’s had one but he was a bad guy who cheated on her with all her friends. The missus says, “Nice friends.” Good call. Anyway, is this Carl or Chris? I’m sure they’re thrilled to hear this. But are we surprised? That’s what professional athletes do. It’s their God-given right.

They kiss. Jake says, “When I kiss Gia I kinda get lost in it.” No doubt, with those professionally enhanced smackers.

SEGMENT 2: Gia’s mom is her best friend, she says. Does that mean her ex slept with her mother? Mom’s got quite the New Yawk accent. And Gia certainly doesn’t have her mother’s thin lips. Hmm, wonder why that could be?... She says they talk every day. Not a good sign, Jake.

Step-dad has a pony-tail. Nuff said about that.

Moms likes him. She hopes he’s the one who can “heal her heart.” She’s reassuring her daughter that Jake really cares about her. Gia isn’t convinced. He acts that way with all the girls, she tells mom. Turns out Gia’s got a good head on those lips.

Step-brother Erick, the goombah, threatens to break Jake’s legs if he doesn’t treat her right, like so many others haven’t. Then we could call him Jake the Peg (that’s a Rolf Harris reference for you younger readers. Google him.) Interesting that if you go by Gia, she’s only really had one other significant relationship. But she has a broken heart and so many guys have treated her poorly.

Gia says she’s falling in love with Jake. She tells us this while wearing a whole tube of red lipstick over her puffy collagen lips... Hey, Erick, just kidding! I love Gia! She seems like a sweetheart! Please don’t hurt me!

Entering the bucolic Williamstown, Massachussetts. We are in Ali country. The show is flying by. Hopefully that means some heavy drama coming up.

Jake keeps telling the Former Front Runner that he misses her, misses kissing her. And they seem really comfortable together. They walk by her dead grandmother’s house so grandma can “meet” the man Ali is going to marry. She says her grandma was more like a mom to her. Ooh, can’t wait to meet her real mom. We already know she doesn’t come from a picture-perfect family. Should be good.

They walk into grandma’s empty house. I have no idea who lives there now, but there’s a picture of grandma on the mantle. Ali believes grandma accepted Jake into her family with that little breaking-and-entering.

SEGMENT 4: He had a great day with Ali and tonight he meets her screwed up family. Mom Elizabeth tells him she never watches The Bachelor. I respect that. She takes him outside and the divorcée asks him what family means to him. (My apologies if she’s a widow.) Mom likes Jake and her gut feeling is that Jake will pick Ali. Her gut doesn’t usually fail her, she says. And I will not make a joke about said gut.

Sitting outside, Ali tells Jake if he asked her today to marry her, she would say yes. He responds by grabbing her by the face and ramming his tongue down her throat. She, too, is falling in love with him. Two for two.

Me? I’m a little disappointed her family was as normal as it was.

SEGMENT 5: We are transported to Newberg, Oregon, to meet Dumb Divorced Tenley’s family. Jake also misses Tenley like crazy. They race to embrace. Jake has big news: “So guess what? I’m in Oregon!” He’s talking to the Dumb one in language she would understand.

Tenley has been “so burned” in the past, so she’s got questions for him. One fear she has is that her ex let his parents plan his whole life. So she asks Jake, point blank, what relationship he has with his parents: “I run pretty much everything past my parents.” Oops. But Dumb Divorced Tenley doesn’t connect the dots: “Good! Good!” Then she tells the camera she’s so relieved that he makes his own decisions. Am I missing something? Now I feel dumb.

She takes Jake to a dancing studio. Her ex-husband (did you know she was married?) never appreciated this aspect to her life, she says. She changes into her dancing clothes and returns to perform an interpretive dance to wedding music. I think she just lost all the votes in this week’s poll. It’s comical. “I gave him a gift. I gave him an inside to my soul,” she says. Back in her jeans, she dances with Jake and he looks like he knows his way around a dance floor. So maybe they really are meant for each other.

SEGMENT 6: Jake is the first guy to meet her parents since the divorce. Did you realize she had been married before? News to me. Mom looks young. Tenley tells her family she danced for Jake without a shred of embarrassment. To their credit, they all kept a straight face. Her mom is thrilled that Jake got to see what Tenley loves to do. “So has Tenley had a chance to see what you love to do?” the mom asks Jake. Oh, how I wish Jake had a sense of humour and responded with, “Masturbate? Not yet, but the fantasy suites are yet to come!”

Question: Who among us has had a date meeting parents where one of the parents takes you away to have a heart-to-heart and every member of the family asks direct questions about your feelings for your date? That’s never happened, right? Or is it just me? But it happens on every single hometown visit in every single season. I’m beginning to think maybe the producers suggest these things to the participants.

Tenley’s dad, Robert, takes Jake upstairs. Tenley’s had a rough year what with her divorce, he tells him, just in case, you know, Jake wasn’t aware that Tenley had been married. I know I wasn’t.

Robert comes downstairs and shares some tears with Tenley. He seems like a good guy, if a tad emotionally unstable. Her mom tells Jake that Tenley is going to have emotional spillovers for a while. Jake asks why (again, speaking the language of Dumb). Because of her divorce, natch. What?! Tenley has been divorced?! Man, the surprises just keep coming!

Jake asks Bob if he can marry his daughter. Why would he do such a thing unless she was the one? Why would you lead a dad on like that? Especially a solid and emotionally troubled guy like Robert. In fact, the whole family seems rock solid. Maybe I can forgive her for that ridiculous dance.

Guess what time it is? It’s Spoiled Vienna time! They always save the best for last. We go to Sanford, Florida, to meet the brat’s family. Jake and Vienna go for a ride on the river to see the manatees and gators. We see turtles and gators, but no manatees.

Vienna tells Jake her dad didn’t like either of the guys she’s dated. Nothing’s good enough for his princess. But Vienna says she’s gone to school and done everything she’s wanted to do so she’s ready this time. As my wife points out, she’s 23! Man, she really is spoiled if she’s done everything she wanted to do by the age of 23. Either that or she hasn’t wanted to do a helluva lot. Crashing cars doesn’t count because that’s something you can do for a lifetime.

When they arrive at the folks’ home, Vienna and her dad, Vincent, embrace and bawl like babies. Something seems creepy but I don’t want to go there.

Jake lets Vienna’s family know about the problems she’s had with the other women in the house/RV. They don’t bat an eyelash. She’s been like her whole life. Danger, Will Robinson!

Vienna tells Jake she’ll take off the ring her dad gave her once she gets a engagement ring. Uh, did I mention creepy? Still not going there.

They lie on the bed and make out and her dad barges in on one knock. Boundaries, dad, boundaries. She’s not your girlfriend anymore... Oops. Just went there.

I know everyone else feels this way, but I can see Jake with any of the other three women. I still don’t get what he sees in Spoiled Vienna. Can anyone out there shed some light?

SEGMENT 8: Jake has completely fallen for all four of the women. And it’s going to be tough to say goodbye to one of them tonight. Oh wait. Thanks to the show’s highlights last week, we know there won’t be a rose ceremony.

Jake is sitting around his hotel room with the cameraman. I guess they need that footage of him alone on the couch. A knock comes to the door. It’s Ali! She’s upset. Tears are streaming down her face. She has to choose between staying or going back to work. Here we go again. She’s pulling an Ed! Just because it worked once doesn’t mean it’ll work again. Jake doesn’t look impressed. He’s been through this before. But with Ed, it came much earlier in the proceedings.

Jake tells her life is about minimizing regrets. She has to weigh which will be the greater regret. But he can’t guarantee he will put a ring on her finger, and nor should he. It seems like that’s what she was fishing for. What kind of person goes on a show without clearing time away from work first? And what kind of employer shatters the dreams of their employees? As they leave, Jake says, “Whatever you decide is okay.” Ali walks down the hotel corridor than plops down and cries. She knows good TV.

SEGMENT 9: Jake sits down with Chris. He seems crestfallen. Chris says if Ali stays, she’s effectively quitting her job for Jake. He wonders about the pressure it will put on them. Let’s look at reality here, folks. She’s a final four contestant. She’s won America’s heart (for the most part). She can get any job she wants after this. This is a no-brainer. Stay with the program.

Chris then asks Jake to think of the situation where she quits her job, then Jake doesn’t choose her. Jake can’t even fathom such a situation. Granted, Jake can't fathom a lot.

Ali arrives first, followed by Vienna, Gia and Tenley. They line up not knowing there will be no rose ceremony. Obviously they don’t watch the upcoming highlights.

As they’re lined up, Ali meekly says, “Chris, can I talk to you for a second.” And we’ll be right back.

SEGMENT 10: Chris looks like he sees it coming. He’s got a smile on his face, knowing the ratings this will bring the show next week. Ali says she has to choose between the two loves of her life: a guy and her job. Chris leads her to Jake. She looks like hell. She says she doesn’t know what to do. She’s mad at herself for not coming to the show knowing that she might be there for a while. Jake goes to his patented move and grabs her legs and pulls them over his lap. He says he doesn’t want her to go. “You came here for a reason,” he says. Yeah, as a lark. She didn’t expect it to produce any real feelings. She says she hasn’t met anyone who is as deserving of her love as Jake is but the fact of the matter is, there are three other girls downstairs. She is totally just fishing for confirmation that she’s the one: “If you were mine, the choice would be easy.” She knows she might leave there with nothing if she stays. “Ali, I don’t want you to go. We have something special,” says Jake. “If you choose to leave, I will be devastated.” Then the subtitles tell us he says, “I love you.” That's every guy's dream, to have subtitles do the dirty work for you.

Chris walks in and asks if she’s made her decision. She cries some more and says she wants more time. At this point, Jake should just walk her to the waiting limo. If the choice is that hard, she shouldn’t be there.

SEGMENT 11: Ali tells Jake she has to go. And she’s so, so sorry. And I’m not buying it. I mean, I buy that she’s leaving, but not that she has to leave. She better not come back as the Bachelorette, that’s for sure, if her job is that important to her. Jake walks her out. Now I’m thinking he should just let her walk out on her own. “I feel like you’re slipping right through my fingers and I don’t know how to stop you,” he tells her at the limo. He should have told her that if she goes, she’s not to contact him again because he’s not having it. It’s now or never. But we know that’s not how this show works.

As the limo pulls away, she cries, “I don’t know if I made the right choice.” Yeah, like she’s going to go back to that wonderful job and not resent it and her boss every day she has to punch the clock. She works at Facebook, doesn’t she? I know! Let’s boycott Facebook! Let’s do it, people!... Ah, who am I kidding. I can’t quit Facebook.

Chris comes back to tell the others that Ali has left. Gia’s face lights up. Now poor Jake left with Dumb Divorced Tenley, Gia Pet and Spoiled Vienna, perhaps the worst group of semi-finalists in the series history. I wonder who he would have sent home. He should tell us. I think it would have been Gia.

Next week they’re going to St. Lucia. Should be some fine shots of Gia’s bum. You don’t have a swimsuit model on your show and not let her get to at least the tropial island getaway. And guess who gives Jake a call while we’re there? Why, none other than Ali. Rinse and repeat.

Oh good Lord, in the outtakes, Gia’s mom reads Jake’s Tarot cards. She tells him to put his hand on the deck and send his energy into them. Jake has the surprising good sense to call her on the nonsense. Which confirms to me Gia was probably the one who would have gone home had not Ali taken the coward’s route. That kind of crazy is usually passed on from mother to daughter.

So what's your take on Ali? Go back and read the segment on her hometown date. Her mom thought Jake would pick her. She told him she would totally say yes if he asked her to marry him that day. Are you buying this nonsense that her job is demanding her back? I get the feeling she's trying to manufacture a greater feeling. She's hoping that absence makes the heart grow fonder, not fungus, and that Jake will realize what he's missing. She'll beg the producers to make a return appearance and everyone will live happily ever after. Or at least for a few months. Or is it more than coincidental that she left before a foreign vacation? Maybe she didn't have a passport or couldn't get one so the producers gave her a storyline to follow. Nah, she couldn't fake those tears.

Until next week, mes amis. Can’t wait to read your comments.


Sara said...

I thought the subtitles were from Ali saying she loved him? The whole story of needing to go back to work sounds familiar (ED) and makes me wonder if Ali is toying with Jake. He doesn't seem like he's willing to play any games and told Ali just that: Whatever you decide will be okay. (hint hint: bubye)

Tenley's family seems very emotional, but then again, Jake's been known to shed some tears. I thought she was a good fit for him but I think her divorce is still too fresh.

I didn't see Jake ask Gia's Mom for her blessing. And when will Gia let her guard down? If she couldn't do it during the hometown visit, then when will it happen?

I still don't understand see a spark with Vienna. I think the hype with the others girls made Jake want to see more of her and ended up focusing on her too much.

Sorry Guy, but I cannot make a vote this week.

RACHEL said...

You're crazy. She was supposed to quit her job for him? He has THREE OTHER GIRLFRIENDS! He's told her that he's falling in love with all of them! She made the right decision. I think she was telling the truth about having to leave, those tears seemed real to me

This episode really hammered home for me what a cruel and manipulative game this show is. And so entertaining!

What about the part where Jake said that all of the women in the house were jealous of Vienna and that's why they were trash talking her to him? Wow, this guy's really not too smart. I think Ali can do better.

Heidi said...

I'm sure I can't be the first person to think this, but isn't the situation with Vienna WAY too ironically similar to the situation with Wes? How does Jake (who was the ultimate Wes-basher) not understand that if everyone in the house is bashing someone, you should probably chalk it up to more than just "jealousy." This man is truly an idiot.

Gia was totes going to get the boot this week, especially after mom read his cards!? Uh, mom? Did you forget to ask Jakey about his religious beliefs? 'Cause I'm pretty sure Tarot cards aren't included.

I think it'll still be Ali and Tenley as the final two. Fingers crossed, love the dramz!

Thanks for the great recaps!

Tera said...

You said everything I was thinking. 1) What kind of motivation is she going to have going back to a job that made her choose like that. She is going to resent her boss and be miserable. 2) I was also thinking it was too coincidental with the Ed thing, that maybe she wanted him to have time to think about what it would be like with her.

Don't go on a reality show if you don't think you can win! Go all in, assume you are going to win and clear it with your job for the entire shooting schedule or don't go.

I really liked Ali and Jake together and I really think she could have been the one. Now look who he is stuck with! I can't wait to see the phone conversation between Ali and Jake next week. If she can't come back maybe they will pull a Jason and Molly!

Unfortunately of the three left, Gia - not a good match, Tenley - not ready for a relationship especially with a pilot who travels alot, which only leaves Vienna - may be she is a spoiled brat but maybe he is looking for someone to just pamper and spoil.

Guy MacPherson said...

Sara: Doh! You're right! I still had the episode on the PVR so I just double-checked. It was, indeed, Ali who uttered those three little sub-titled words.

While I think Tenley's divorce is still too fresh, who says they have to rush into anything? He could choose her and just spend time dating her. I know he's looking for a wife, but it doesn't have to be immediate.

Rachel: I just don't buy that her work was able to contact her and tell her to get off national TV and get her butt back into the office or she's fired. Contestants aren't permitted contact with the outside world. And who goes into a show like this and only books two weeks off, or whatever it is? It just makes no sense. That being said, even if it did go down like they say it did, I still wouldn't think she should abort her 15 minutes of fame for a stinkin' job. Jobs are a dime a dozen, especially for smart, attractive celebrities. I don't think she'd find herself homeless if she were to lose her job at Facebook. If she's qualified enough to work there, she's qualified to work elsewhere. Yes, even in "this economy".

But yes, definitely she can do better.

Heidi: Great points about the Wes situation and the Tarot cards.

Tera: Exactly!

Lori said...

Ali always looks like a train wreck. Her hair is always the messiest at the rose ceremonies, (especially last night's since she had such a decision to make) just pulled back into a plain old ponytail. Everyone else looks so beautiful, hair fixed so nicely....even Ali's shoes didn't match her dress in last nights episode. No, I am not all about the way people look, I am just observant.

I like Tenley & hope they would date for awhile before making any type of serious committment to make sure she is over her ex...but thinking she may never be over the ex. I am a little weirded out by her mom though (for Jake in the future -like mother like daughter???).

I do not see Jake fitting in with Ali's family...they seem too harsh for him (her step brother Erick making such a threat to Jake)...maybe it is because they are New Yorker's and that is how they are...but Jake is from the South & not used to such harshness I bet!! In the previews I have seen his family seems all "proper". The 2 families would never blend together to spend the holidays together!

And Vienna, don't get me started on her...she is not even attractive, how could he possibly have any interest in her? The creepy dad too...UGH, stay away Jake!

I am seriously hoping that he ends up with NONE of the girls. He can do much better than any of them!! Even Tenley (who I like), she needs to not be so hung up on her ex...I have a feeling she will always be that way.

Anonymous said...

The only reason I think Jake could end up with Vienna is because they bonded in such a major way (for him) at the bungee jump. I think that he must have been thru some awful, frightening experience (did you see him nearly hyperventilate?) and when Vienna soothed him and they made the jump together he thought he had found someone who would be able to make it thru the rough times with him.
It's all I can come up with.
I think Ali's a game player, but bet she'll be the Bachelorette...
I loved this week's column-- maybe the no basketball thing is a good deal for us?? :-)

Anonymous said...

I think the whole segment with Ali and her job was a ratings ploy. She even said herself that when she consulted with her mom, her mom told her that if she lost her job everything would fine. I mean, she could move back home and stay with her family until she got back on her feet again. Her job just isn't that important for her to go on and on about whether or not to stay or leave. It's not like she's some big executive or a CEO. And I think she will be coming back, or at least asking Jake if she can. It will be interesting to see if he allows her to come back. He may tell her to forget it.

I agree that Tenley is not ready for marriage, but there's no reason why she can't date Jake, unless she is that vulnerable that if it didn't work out, she would be devestated.

I thought the same thing about Vienna and her dad! He is just way too protective of her and spoils her way too much. And the ring? What's up with that? I don't think she could live her life without her father there every step of they way. I don't think she could move away from him either.

Gia seems nice but she's not for Jake. She is looking for more TV exposure. She needs to go.

I'm hoping Ali comes back but I think Jake is going to through a tantrum and tell her no.

The only thing this show has going for it is the drama because let's face it, there is no romance. It's cat fight after cat fight and young girl drama queens. Still say they should put some cougars on the show for Jake. That would really be interesting to watch.

Great blog, as always!

evision said...
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