The Bachelor, Episode Two: You Are Like A Toxic Disease
At the start of episode two of the Bachelor, Brad is still nervous, and the ladies are still drunk. When Chris Harrison drops off the first date card, he literally drops it and backs away, the way one might feed an angry lion.
Brad has chosen to take one of the Ashleys out on his first one-on-one date. She, wisely, decides to wear a trashy prom dress. They drive down a dark road, and Ashley is scared, even before Brad makes her get out and walk. This is where The Bachelor turns out to be a creepy horror movie—Brad has Ashley flip a switch, and it turns out they’re in an empty, rinky-dink amusement park! If that isn’t terrifying, I don’t know what is. On the other hand, this girl thinks she’s dressed like a princess, when anyone can see she’s dressed like a slutty teenager, so it’s possible that we don’t share the same sensibilities.
Back at the house, the girls are in their bathing-suits, because that’s how you sit around with your frenemies. The second date card has arrived. It’s for fifteen girls, and they’re all pissed.
At the carnival, Brad and Ashley pose for each other in a makeshift photobooth and then make out awkwardly. They ask each other questions: “What makes you you?” Ashley says that she is prepared for the worst, due to her absentee, drug addict, homeless father. This makes Brad, very, very nervous. It turns out that Brad’s father was also an absentee drug addict! Ashley thinks this makes it sound like Brad is going to be a great husband, but Brad knows better. He gives her the rose, they kiss, and then he rubs her lipstick off his face. Brad says that all of his walls have come tumbling down, which means he never had any walls in the first place—maybe a speed bump?
The next morning, the girls are getting ready for the date. The one who looks like Maria Menounos is turning thirty, and extra mad about having to share The Brad. Everyone recognizes that this is a pivotal day for love. The fake boobs are on display like never before. The date is a benefit for the Red Cross, which is very hard to make fun of, and so I won’t. It would probably be easier for these girls to donate silicone, but hey, blood works too. The girls and The Brad are filming PSAs, which means that The Brad gets to change his clothes a lot. One of them is supposed to be butch, and has two fake casts and a neck-brace. For some reason, this makes her very sad, whereas the Vampire is wearing black rubber from head-to-toe and seems happy as a clam. Brad is playing Gustavo, who has a mustache. This is how you can tell the difference between them. Otherwise, the similarities are astonishing. Gustavo would make out with a wooden post. The only girl who shows any talent whatsoever is the one in the neck-brace. One girl, a self-described ‘Big Ol’ Prude,’ straddles The Brad at the first opportunity.
After the shoot, the girls and The Brad go to a rooftop bar. The Brad wants the night to be drama-free, which is hilarious. Maria Menounos is still so mad that her birthday is ruined, and wants to both “dissect” The Brad and “heal all the layers.” This is going nowhere good.
Back at the Playboy Mansion, the next date card arrives. It’s another one-on-one, this time for Jackie, who I have never seen before. She quacks with delight.
The Brad gives the rose to Maria Menounos, which is clearly a pity gift.
On Jackie’s date, The Brad takes her to Beverly Hills, where he promises to make her feel like ‘Pretty Woman.’ I’m pretty sure he’s already doing that. They go to a spa and start covering each other in mud. Rinsed off, The Brad leads her into a hotel room filled with hideous evening gowns. She’s thrilled. Once she’s all decked out, Brad covers her in borrowed diamonds. If she doesn’t put out, I will give everyone reading this one million dollars. It turns out that The Brad has rented out the Hollywood Bowl for the night, rather, that ABC has offered the Hollywood Bowl some free advertising. Jackie has only slept with two men, which concerns The Brad. He is punishing her by making her go to a private Train concert. Jackie is over-dressed, under-whelmed, and I’m starting to feel bad for her.
The Brad feels a lot more comfortable at tonight’s cocktail party. Maria Menounos asks him an important question: does he prefer Starbucks or the Coffee Bean? This could be a deal breaker, folks. Ricky Bobby does not find this amusing. The girls are all freaking out, taking turns calling each other psycho. One girl tells another that she is “like a toxic disease on this…journey.” I couldn’t agree more. I think they need to start pumping Xanax into the house instead of cheap champagne. Two girls are crying, but never fear, Ali and Roberto are here! Ali has a good haircut and Roberto has a bad one, that’s how you can tell them apart. With their help, The Brad gives an early rose to Ricky Bobby, a solid choice, though he doesn’t nearly deserve her attention.
This week’s Rose Ceremony is a blur of unfamiliar, overly bronzed faces. In the end, The Brad keeps everyone except for the two girls in the ‘toxic disease’ miasma, and one wearing a headband. Headband thinks that love might be in the cards for her, and called The Bachelor a “last-ditch effort,” despite the fact that she is twenty-five. Oh, Headband.
Next up: Seal! I hope that Heidi Klum helps out at the next Rose Ceremony. She could really lend some much-needed cruelty to the situation.
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