We're down to the final two. And we're told that we won't believe the ending! Betcha I can. It's Nick or Shawn, Shawn or Nick. Who you got in the office pool?
Kaitlyn tells her family they have to forget what they know about Nick and only judge him based on what they see of him face to face. Not sure that's going to help him much. Her mom says she can't do that. Good for mom! Hold that grudge!
Over drinks, mom asks Nick to tell them about his last relationship. That'd be Andi. He doesn't answer. I'd rather want to know why that was his last relationship? How do these good-looking people get weeks and weeks of prime time network coverage and still can't find a partner? He's just not trying very hard. Or he's having lots of fun.
Then mom takes him aside. Her opinion of him isn't all that flattering based on what she saw on Andi's season. Kaitlyn tells us if her mom doesn't approve of a guy, she can't be with him. But this is all much ado about nothing. She'll approve. They always do. But first we have to wait for the commercials to end.
And we're back... Mom tells Nick he was possessive and jealous, in her opinion. At least that's what she saw on TV. And the TV never lies. He accepts the charge. He tells mom that Kaitlyn says sometimes it's hard for her to open up. Um... sometimes not so much. Sometimes you feel like a nut; sometimes you don't. He tells her he's in love with her daughter. Mom tears up. They both do, actually. He's really laying it on thick. She eats it up. She says he's very good for her daughter. Now she calls him a teddy bear, a sweetheart. She admits she was totally wrong with her judgment of him. So that was easy.
Now it's her dad's turn. Nick says he very much loves his daughter. He says he'd like to spend the rest of his life with her. Just like what he said to Andi's parents. Someone should go through Nick's speeches to the parents in the two seasons and see how they compare. Anyway, Dad gets a very good feeling from Nick. They're pushovers, the two of them!
Outside Nick and Kaitlyn smooch against the vehicle before he drives off. His only insecurity is that he doesn't know what's happening with Shawn.
They're moving fast through these meetings. We're on Shawn already. He enters with a bouquet of flowers and thank-you gifts, all cocky like. Kaitlyn's sister now really likes Nick and can't imagine how anyone can compare. She's liked Nick for a year (apparently). I say "(apparently)" because just a moment ago sis said she couldn't picture Kaitlyn with a guy like Nick. So I either missed something without the benefit of rewind, or the editors screwed up.
Shawn's a real smoothy. The toast he gave was perfect. Mom sits down with him and asks about jealousy. How will he handle it in the outside world given Kaitlyn's big personality and how people are drawn to her, she wants to know. Presumably he won't have to worry about sleeping with other boyfriends in the real world so all should be good.
They're in Utah, aren't they? I thought that's what they showed off the top. Yet there are waves rushing the shore behind them. What body of water is that? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?
The mom says it was awkward to bring up Kaitlyn's intimacy with Nick but Shawn handled it well. Did I miss that? Or was it the editors again? Is this a theme? I thought she just asked vaguely about jealousy. Maybe I need to be better at reading between the lines.
When Shawn is talking to the dad, he leaves to go get the mom. He's taking the bull by the horns, this guy. Mr. Monotone asks for their blessings if he asks Kaitlyn to marry him. The mom gives her support one thousand percent, even though that's technically impossible. The father concurs. Group hug!
Outside he tells Kaitlyn, "I love you so much," before they kiss. It's 8:37. Lots of drama to come, methinks. Who's leading? Shawn by a greasy hair. Or Nick. Not sure.
They each get one more date. Wait, it says they're in California. That explains the waves. When did they leave Utah?
First date is with Nick. They're on a boat. I really wish Nick comes in second again. I just like traditions.
Kaitlyn has good feelings towards Nick. She feels he fits into her life, and vice versa. Their chemistry is through the roof. It's the type of relationship Nick's always wanted. Nick brings out a side of Kaitlyn that nobody else does, she says. But she cares so much about both guys that she needs clarity "today." Meaning on Nick's date. Meaning he must be the underdog.
Nick's very calm. There's a huge difference in how feels this time compared to his time with Andi. Oh please, please, please let him lose again! He's so confident. I think Shawn would be disappointed, too, but I also think he kind of expects her to choose Nick, too.
Kaitlyn tells Nick she's happy he decided to "put his life on hold" to do this. Are you kidding? This is his life! He's incapable of having a relationship without cameras recording his every move.
Nick tells her he's got her a gift and it's in his bedroom. A cheap excuse to get her on his bed. It's an album or something. A photo of them forehead to forehead on their first one-on-one date. And opposite the photo is a cheesy poem he penned. That's a sure-fire winner. Women love awful poetry.
Kaitlyn feels hopeful and excited. She feels this is the guy for her. When she looks at him, she knows she's in love. It just feels right. It's been one of the best dates and she doesn't want it to end. So you know what that means! They lie back on the bed and kiss.
She says she woke up at 2:30 in the morning with her heart pounding out of her chest. Was she with Nick at the time? She didn't say. But she does say she needs all the clarity she can get from Shawn now. So who knows?
Shawn toasts Kaitlyn (his specialty) and she responds with a tame kiss and a motherly query as to whether or not he's wearing sunscreen. She cuddles into his shoulder but she doesn't seem all that thrilled to be with him. Or maybe she's just super comfortable. It's hard to read. She says she doesn't want to make him nervous, and she's not just being weird, but she thinks they're both just in their own heads. When she says he's being different, too, he says he's just reacting to her awkwardness. This is going great.
But tomorrow is the big day when she selects her Mr. Right. Shawn thinks she's having doubts about him. He wasn't nervous to start the date, but is now. But who knows how to read this weirdness? Not I, a seasoned Bachelor/ette veteran.
At night, he's got Kaitlyn's whiskey ready for her when she arrives. They talk about the earlier awkwardness but it doesn't get any less awkward. But at least she has whiskey to pound.
They talk about what it might be like to watch the season. He envisions a time he'll call and say, "Hey, I can't believe you're making out with Joe." That was pretty funny. And pretty real.
He tells her he thinks it'll never not be fun with her. He wants to put her above everything else. She looks happy and comfortable. Maybe he really is "the one."
Oh, Shawn has a gift, too! What a coincidence! He gives her a jar of memories. Pictures, notes, golf balls... "it was the most thoughtful gift." Better than a cheesy poem any day of the week. The prop department really went all out on this one.
He's confident that tomorrow he'll get down on one knee and propose. Kaitlyn feels "so relieved" after this date. But at the same time it's overwhelming and terrifying. But it's hard. She knows she's got to hurt somebody. "Somebody's going to get blindsided," she says. Yes! That's why we watch! We don't care who you choose. We just like to see who you don't choose.
Or is that just me? Sorry.
But don't feel too bad. Whoever it is will find love on Douchebag in Paradise in some future summer, so don't worry about them. Or if it's Nick, maybe he'll find a third Bachelorette to hit up.
It's shirtless time. Shawn wakes up to the big day and pulls the blinds. He walks outside, still shirtless, with a cup of coffee on the balcony. He's confident. Keeps talking about getting down on one knee. He's reviewing his notes on what to say. But first the ring bearer knocks at the door to hock his wares. He's confident that after tonight he's not going to remember who Nick is. That's doubtful. I'm sure in their first fight, Shawn will throw the sleeping-with-Nick thing back in Kaitlyn's face.
Nick wears a shirt on his big morning. Have we ever seen him shirtless? He's not exactly ripped, is he? He reminisces about the time Andi sent him home before the ring bearer showed up but this time the jeweller really does show up. He talks about how he's prepared himself for the worst but can't see it going the other way.
Half hour left. Kaitlyn arrives and greets Chris Harrison. Shawn tells us he'd be heartbroken if he wasn't chosen. Nick knows that this might not end the way he hoped. Shawn's head is all over the place. Who will it be? I could see her choosing either one. But you know who I'm pulling for.
The waiting is finally over, says Chris Harrison in a studio far, far away. Let's get to it. Is there a line on whether the first person gets the rose or not? Or do they switch it up from season to season? Know what I mean? I'm wondering if we can tell by who the first person is whether that's the winner or loser.
She says she's sorry staring at her feet. "I know that we talked about that if I didn't feel this, I would let you know," she says. The only explanation she has is that her heart is with somebody else. That's probably not the thing to say given his relationship with Shawn. He says he's not trying to be short but there's nothing she can say that would make him any less confused. He's a little pissed. She tells him she doesn't take anything back and was feeling everything at the time. He says he believes it but he doesn't need to hear it. She says it was all those things to her, too, and he says it wasn't. She's crying. He says he doesn't want to say things that are hurtful but she doesn't feel what he feels and she doesn't love him. She just says sorry, as any good Canadian would, and offers to walk him out.
She says she's not trying to sugar-coat anything. He says he's gotta go. Walks proudly and defiantly to the limo. He stares at the ring he chose.
Kaitlyn says she needed to see that relationship out to the end and she's really going to miss Nick. Nick takes off the ring they got together and throws it to the floor of the car. He doesn't know what to think. He feels sick. He's in shock and feels a little foolish. More than anything, I think, he feels led on. He says he's the world's biggest joke.
Absolute stunned silence in the studio, says Harrison. Is this what we can't believe? So far, I can believe it.
But it's going to be a good After the Final Rose. We all remember Nick's memorable pouty turn the last time he was on. Only this time, it won't be such a revelation that he slept with the Bachelorette.
Now here comes Shawn. Only if he refuses Kaitlyn's rose or if she doesn't offer him one will I be the least bit surprised. So far, it's just business as usual.
Kaitlyn tells him Shawn lights him up and makes her laugh and most importantly lets her be herself. You know, by letting her sleep with other guys. Wait, that's a harmless jab! Kaitlyn would appreciate it. I don't want to be accused of cyber-bullying.
She tells him she is completely his and she'll always be faithful to him. We'll see about that. She also says she loves him with all of her heart like she's never loved anybody before. "You are the one and you always will be," she says. Until someone better comes along.
Here comes the knee drop. Take a knee, fella. He gets right to the point: Will you marry me? She said yes. Release the pigeons! (Oh, wouldn't that be glorious?!)
Do you believe that ending?! Yeah, me, too.
But now the fun begins. Maybe. It's After the Final Rose time.
They bring the engaged Shawn and Kaitlyn out right off the top. They look very happy but there's nothing to report here other than the fact Shawn looks very pale.
How's Nick doing? Here he is, eating humble pie again. He tells us he was shocked. Again. Chris Harrison asks what made him so confident. He talks about their pre-show relationship. Just texts, phone calls, video calls, and at some point things clicked. Harrison asks if they were on the phone for hours. Nick says they had great conversations, but doesn't say how long they'd talk for. He says when they finally had their intimate evening, it wasn't just some hook-up.
Harrison asks why Shawn hates him so much. He admits he acted immaturely and is coming off much better this time around than he did on his last After the Final Rose. Maybe vying to become the next Bachelor? Yeah, we all need more Nick.
Now Shawn comes out and joins Nick on the couch. Harrison really tries to get to the bottom of this hatred, for some reason. Shawn says he just can't fake liking someone if he doesn't. Something was just "off" with Nick. Something was said in the house, which he doesn't want to get into. Then don't mention it! Is this the thing about the Eskimo brothers? If so, that came long after the Nick hatred. But speaking of that, why isn't anyone asking Kaitlyn about it?
Harrison asks Shawn if there's jealousy. He says if watching the woman you love go off with other guys is jealousy, then yeah, he's jealous. Um, that's pretty much the definition of jealousy, isn't it? Nailed it. This reminds me of the great Jack Handy line:
“If you define cowardice as running away at the first sign of danger, screaming and tripping and begging for mercy, then yes, Mr. Brave man, I guess I'm a coward.”
Harrison asks them if they want to hug it out. What a ridiculous no-win question. They don't.
Shawn is young. It hits home when he says, "Nick verse Shawn, Nick verse Shawn." This is something little kids say that drives me crazy. It's 'versus', not 'verse'. And while we're on the subject, it's not 'versing' either. Stop it already!
Now Nick gets some answers from Kaitlyn. He barely hugs her. It's another one-handed effort. He says the toughest part to him were the times they said, 'I love you' to each other. He says he took it to heart. He wants to know what she was thinking when she said that. She says at the end of the day, the only explanation is that no love that she had was as strong as the love she had for Shawn.
Harrison harps on about the pre-existing relationship. He wants to know what the extent of the relationship was. I still don't know any more about it than I knew the very first episode he was introduced.
What I'd want to know is what she did with the ring she got with Nick, and what she thought of him throwing it on the floor of the limo. I should write questions for Harrison.
She says it was excruciating having to send away Nick. They look back at the break up. Harrison asks what Nick meant when he said she took things from him. He says she knew he wasn't the one when he was giving her the speech, so why did she let him continue? Those words weren't meant for her; they were meant for someone who shared his feelings. Valid point. He resents her putting him through the speech and taking out the ring when she knew. So it was that moment he won't have back.
But Nick wishes Kaitlyn the best. And that's it for him. Until the next time he shows up on the show or one of its offshoots.
The last segment sees Kaitlyn and Shawn again. What's next for them? Apparently Starbucks and Tim Horton's, if you believe Kaitlyn. For Shawn, it's waking up tomorrow and defending his girl against cyber-bullies. Kaitlyn melts in his arms.
Did she make the right choice? I think so. Will it last? On a Bachelor/ette scale of 1 to 10, where 1 equals almost every couple in the franchise history and 10 equals the three couples I can think of who've lasted, I'd put this one at a solid 5. Doesn't sound solid, but usually I give these couples three months max. I can see this one lasting for a bit longer. Maybe even a year. We will see.
And that's that. Until Douchebags in Paradise which starts next Sunday. No way. I can't do it. Two shows a week during the summer? Impossible. Interesting on the upcoming highlights, we hear a woman calling another woman a "whore." How sexist.