With the introductions out of the way, this episode of Bachelor Pad was able to use it's entire two hours to build drama (which may or may not exactly exist before editing) and romance (if that's what you choose to call making out with someone you barely know). Such a relief. Is anyone else so glad that this show is two hours long? It totally has enough interesting things going on to warrant an entire two hours of air time. Two hours I could spend watching the Olympics. But I'm totally not bitter about how I spent my night. Noooo sir.
In honor of the Olympics —well, "honor" may be a strong word, but go with it — the second episode of this season of Bachelor Pad kicks off with a gymnastics challenge. Rhythmic gymnastics. Three tiny, leotard-clad, flexible (can't forget flexible) nymphlike creatures bound out onto the floor, hula hoops and ribbon sticks in hand, to perform feats the likes of which the Bachelor Pad contestants have never seen before. "That looks hard," says Nick as one of the nubile athletes (sure, we'll call 'em athletes) uses a hula hoop to raise her foot back behind her head. No kidding. Now it's your turn! The guys and gals are each tasked with performing a rhythmic gymnastics routine to be judged by rhythmic gymnastics experts Ashley Hebert (of The Bachelorette fame), her fiance JP Soon-to-be-Hebert, and Olympic medalist What's-Her-Name.
To say the guys were pumped to learn that they had to perform a rhythmic gymnastics routine while wearing Spandex unitards would be like saying, I don't know, something totally ridiculous. They are manly men! Manly men don't wear leotards! Manly men don't wave ribbons! Manly men don't jump like reindeer! Except, of course, when they do. Over on the ladies' side of Gymnastics Boot Camp things don't look much better. Giggles abound as limb after limb becomes ensnared in a dangerous web of ribbons. I'm honestly not sure if this is a training session or a Girl Scout basket-weaving class gone terribly awry.
But soon enough practice is over and it's time to show off for the judges. The girls go first, and me oh my, what a mess. Are they supposed to be in synch? Are they supposed to look graceful? Are they supposed to look like they're in pain? We may never know the answers to such questions. Good thing the guys are up next to show them how it's done. These manly men have got every flip of the wrist and flourish of the hand down pat; they are such natural-born rhythmic gymnasts they even throw in the worm, just for good measure. Everyone is impressed, present company included.
Now comes the hard part, our expert judges must pick the best and the worst rhythmic gymnasts. Erica Rose and Ed (poor, oblivious Ed, who just wasn't sassy enough) are dubbed The Worst and awarded one strike against them come judgement day. Blakely and Michael are the winners. Blakely and Michael receive roses and get to choose three people each for their amazingly romantic and intimate and private dates. Yay for Blakely and Michael.
As soon as the Blakely and Michael have roses pinned to their chests, the vultures descend. Erica tells Michael he needs to bring her on the date; he needs to save her from elimination. Michael nods his agreement and pats Erica on the back, then turns to the camera and is all, "Oh hell no! Only hot shorties get to come on my dates."
And so he picks Rachel, Donna, and Lindzi for a super romantic trip to a "rock" concert by a band I've never heard of and never want to hear again. The lead singer has floppy Justin Bieber hair and an ironic mustache, so he must be awesome. Donna, who I keep forgetting is a 22-year-old child, transforms into a slobbery puppydog whenever Michael is near. "I love him, I love him," she coos to all who will listen. It's actually painful to watch. Michael takes her for a twirl around the dance floor and she proclaims to the camera, "This is the best date I'll ever have in my life!" Oh honey, you know it's all pretend, right? Right? Please tell me you do. She doesn't. She's so blindly obsessed with Michael that she barely blinks when he starts making out with Rachel in the corner.
Back at the mansion, it's Jamie's 26th birthday and Ryan — the 32-year-old virgin — has baked her a cake. Jamie, who definitely doesn't eat cake, spends the night snuggling with Chris on a wicker sofa, saying embarrassing things like, "I can't believe you like me so much." Blakely doesn't like what she sees. And so heats up the Blakely/Jamie/Chris triangle for round two. And let me tell ya, round two refuses to die.
On Michael's date, Michael steals Rachel away for more tonsil hockey. "Rachel and Michael have been talking for hours," says Donna. Oh honey, "talking"? How did you get on this show? During her very own one-on-one time with Michael, Donna reveals a creepy Wedding Crashers sketch she did of him. Michael gives Donna a pity makeout, then he gives Rachel the rose. Donna is heartbroken. Put that girl on suicide watch, pronto.
Back at the mansion (again), Blakely, Jamie, and Chris are still strategizing, conniving, and manipulating one another. This continues for another 526 years, or until one of them gets voted off, whichever comes first.
Now it's time for Blakely's date (and I can't believe we're only halfway through this episode). She picks some boys, they go soapcar racing, nothing of note happens. Oh right, there's more "Blah blah Blakely blah blah I'm the best" from Chris. Chris gets the rose. I hate Chris.
Following the date, everyone in the mansion gets drunk and has a massive orgy. Everyone, that is, except for the twins. No one likes the twins; they don't even like each other. They spend the entire night squabbling and squawking, so loudly and for so long that I'm forced to turn the TV on mute. Michael, always the voice of reason, sums up the twins by saying, "I'm 28. I've met a lot of people on Planet Earth. I've never met people who fight so much. You know that sensation when you have a mosquito buzzing in your ear? That's what they are 24 hours a day." But praise Jesus, as the sun rises, the twins have packed their bags and are boarding the Subaru that will take them back to their depressing lives in Gainesville, FL.
With the twins gone, all the girls are safe this week. Only one guy will be voted off. David — poor, lonely, Bachelor-watching David — is positive he'll be the one to go. I am, too. I wonder if they'll drag this out or if the girls will vote quickly and just put him out of his misery. But, ho! What is this? Kalon has devised a plan! He wants to send the virginal Ryan home, and so he asks Lindzi to flutter from lady to lady like a pollinating bee, spreading his seeds of dissension. At the same time, Reid decides he wants to vote off Ed, simply because he is holding an ancient grudge agains the s**tshow of a man. Good luck with that one.
Finally, it's Rose Ceremony time. One-by-one, Chris Harrison calls the names:
Tony (You're still on this show? How's your son?)
Womp womp. It's the end of the road for Ryan, and before he got to put his P in anyone's V. Better luck next time, bud. As Ryan is driven away in the limo he can't help but wonder why Jamie decided to wear Madonna's fingerless gloves to the Rose Ceremony.
[Photo Credit: ABC]