Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Miss Emily returns

Welcome back. And didn't this sneak up on me! I had no idea we were all set to go until two days ago when my wife informed me the new season was nigh. That's what I get for not reading the tabs.

Am I really doing this again? Looks like it. Before the show I was thinking what a dud this one could be. Yes, Miss Emily is beautiful, inside and out, but she's not exactly Miss Personality. But I thought the first episode was decent and the upcoming season highlights look like lots of fun, in the usual train wreck way. So that's good.

I was glad to see tonight's episode was only 90 minutes. What's up? Think the network is sick of giving up so much time to the show? Will this be the regular time slot now or will we go back to the two hours they've been giving us the past few seasons? 

Right off the bat we got a gander of Miss Emily's knockout figure as we saw her in a tighttight sweater. Not to be too base, but those have to be fake boobs, right? I'm alright with that but it just seems like a disconnect for someone with such a wholesome image. We also got a look at her house and car in Charlotte and she seems to be doing very well for herself. I know real estate isn't outrageous down there, but I don't imagine salaries are, either.

I also wondered how the hell this picture of near perfection is still single after her last season-long appearance on national television. Is she damaged goods? But you know what? I completely forgot she actually won her season with Brad. How bad is my memory? They got engaged and everything. Goes to show how much I think about this show outside of Monday nights.

I described her as 'near perfect'. So what's missing? As I mentioned, she's not a great conversationalist or anything. And now I'm wondering about her smarts. The twice-engaged 26-year-old said that being engaged is "really special and should be saved for the person you're going to marry." It's those core values that will endear her to simple people the world over.

Since I don't read the tabloids, I only recently heard the big news that Chris Harrison is divorcing his wife. The Bachelor curse continues. Who will it strike next? Trista and Ryan? I see there's a movement afoot to enlist Harrison as the next Bachelor. I heartily concur. How fun would that be? It's not as if he would have to pick a life partner so soon after his breakup. He knows better than anyone this is just a show and a free romp with a bunch of gorgeous gals. The inevitable breakup is all part of the game.

Anyway, back to Miss Emily and her new fellas. We got a sneak peak at eight of them prior to their first meeting with Miss Emily:
  • Kalon described himself as "young, fun and good-looking." Then we got a close-up of his mug. He looks like a metrosexual Clark Kent.
  • Ryan says he played eight years of "pro football". Since he didn't mention the NFL, I'm going to guess it was arena football.
  • Tony, from Beaverton, Oregon, is a father to a 5-year-old boy, has a weak soul patch and possesses two thumbs, which he likes to point at himself with.
  • Lerone is a big, black man with a small, cute dog. He also is fixated with Miss Emily's status as a single mom. 
  • David is a singer/songwriter who throws around words like "ineffable." And what a lyricist! You should have heard him at the piano intoning "Emily" about a hundred different ways.
  • Charlie may have a brain injury, but there's nothing wrong with his heart.
  • Jef spells his name with one 'f'. Nuf said. Oh, and he rides a skateboard.
  • Arie is an Indy car driver. He's worried that may bring back painful memories for Miss Emily. Gee, you think?
For the first time in franchise history, our protagonist is meeting the potential spouses away from Los Angeles. We're in Miss Emily's hometown of Charlotte for reasons unknown. At first I thought it must be so she could be near Ricki, her daughter. But I see now that little Ricki will be travelling the globe with her throughout this journey so I don't see what difference it makes that the first week is in their hometown. Maybe the L.A. mansion was unavailable for rentals this month.

Miss Emily (who's a babe in the woods at 26 years of age, may I remind you) wants a minivan full of babies. Her clock is tickin', afterall, she said. Twenty-six!

Oh, can we please dispense with the notion that anyone has given up anything to be on the show? Miss Emily says she has, and says all the guys have, too. What, I ask?! The Bachelor handbook needs to be rewritten. Once they purge that trite phrase, they can move on to "Can I steal you?" and "not here for the right reasons". That's a start.

The first introductions are always rather painful. Some people want to make a big impression. Let's see how that worked out. Six dudes were sent home. Jackson got down on his knees and recited a cheesy speech to her. He's toast. Lerone told her about his fetish for single moms. Gonzo. Randy arrived looking like Johnny Carson's Aunt Blabby before tearing it off to reveal – tada! – he's really not an old lady at all! Hit the road.

Granted, some of the cheesy opening lines stuck around, but they handed out 19 roses so some had to stick. (Speaking of which, why the odd number? Nineteen guys? Was it supposed to be more and she didn't like six of them? Or was it supposed to be fewer and she really dug too many of them?) In fact, Doug, a Seattle single dad, blabbed on and on about his life story and he got the first impression rose. So what do I know? Then there was Joe, annoyingly loud, who danced a little jig and he'll be there next week. And Jef and his ridiculous skateboard and bouffant hairdo that makes him look like a young Mickey Rooney. And Stevie, who showed up with a cheap ghetto blaster playing some generic dance music and looking like a nerd dressed up as a party MC. Tony brought a shoe on a cushion, claiming he was Prince Charming. I think it was a cheap excuse to look at her bare foot as he slipped on the glass slipper. It wouldn't surprise me if we learn he has a foot fetish. Travis had the lame idea to carry around an ostrich egg to represent Miss Emily and Ricki, saying he'd protect the egg like he'll protect them. We just know it's going to break at some point, don't we? And Kalon who flew in on his private helicopter, much to everyone's jealousy. And these doofuses were all selected by the in-over-her-head Miss Emily.

Some more first impressions: Kyle couldn't control himself. He was in awe at her absolute stunning beauty and stood there looking her up and down, undressing her with his eyes. Aaron, the biology teacher, came straight out of central casting. The only thing missing was the white lab coat and pocket protector. Brent is the oldest looking 41-year-old I've ever seen. But maybe that's because he has six kids... Wait a second. He has what? Yes, six kids. I can't understand why he didn't make it through, can you? John says all his friends call him "Wolf". That's alarming to me. If his name was actually Wolf, I wouldn't mind, because that's a real name. But when your friends decide to call you Wolf, it's for a reason. And probably not a good one. Speaking of names, what's with Jean-Paul? The guy has not a trace of an accent. If you don't have a thick French accent with a name like that, you're a pretentious douche. Which she must have sensed because he was selected to advance.

Oh, and producers, every single season I get so pissed off at contestants with the same name. There are hundreds of names out there, and no doubt hundreds of potential contestants, there's no reason to have two people with the same name. So all well and good this season. There's no need for initials to differentiate between contestants. But get this: there's an Alessandro and an Alejandro. Seriously?! You're shitting me. I don't know why these little things rankle me like they do, but they do. What's more, she gave roses to both – probably because she couldn't tell them apart – so we've got to put up with this nonsense for at least another week.

Although, her exchange with Alessandro was classic. Remember, Miss Emily isn't the smartest cookie in the pantry, so cut her some slack. But when the Brazilian spoke his native Portuguese to her, she responded with "¡Gra├žias!" I guess it sounded like Spanish to her.

At the cocktail party, Miss Emily played up her southern belle stereotype, announcing, "Golly, I'm nervous." She really said "golly"! I haven't heard that in... I don't think I've ever heard any real person say that. I thought it was just something they used in Archie comic strips. I had no idea it was a real word.

Doug, the single dad, kept harping on his kid, saying his son wrote a letter for Miss Emily. He gives it to her, and Miss E (for Emily, not Einstein) says, "I'm going to read it, okay?" Uh, it's highly unorthodox, but alright.

The letter was a paean to dear old dad: "Dad always tucks me in... blah, blah, blah." I could just see Doug standing over his cowering child dictating the letter. Or better yet, grabbing a crayon with his left hand and writing it himself.

I was expecting to hate Kalon and Arie but I found both to be fine. Kalon deserves his bad rap for his look-at-me entrance, but he seemed to be self-deprecating and polite. And Arie, the race car driver, was genuine and sweet.

But we'll see. These are all first impressions and I know from the upcoming highlights that somebody's a major jerk. And some I've written off will prove to be decent chaps.