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I’m a funny, free-thinking girl who loves philosophy, disco dancing to 70′s music, going on spontaneous adventures, and living life to the fullest. I love dogs and have an inexplicable affection for elephants. I know who I am and I know what I want out of life.

The Bachelor Season 19 Episode 8, A.K.A. “IOWANNA GO HOME!”

The Bachelor season 19 episode 8

This episode starts off with the rose ceremony that ABC chose not to show us last week. I get that there are “NO RULES” this season, but when they take away the guarantee of a rose ceremony at the end of each episode, the drama has no set point to build to. Instead of each episode feeling like a little roller coaster ride, the episodes all merge together and end up feeling like one long terrible road trip—the kind where you get multiple flat tires, are approached by at least one creepy dude with a chainsaw, and never have a rest stop when you need one.

Megan (a.k.a. “Helmet Girl”) pulls Chris aside before the rose ceremony to tell him that she feels like their relationship isn’t progressing. He agrees. She leaves.

Well, in reality he rambled on for like 6 sentences about how “it’s so hard right now” and “this process, you know,” and “I get it.” But what he MEANT to say was “I agree.”

Goodbye Megan…you’ll always be Helmet Girl in our hearts. Whenever I feel the need to smash my head against a wall, I’ll think of you. So I probably won’t think of you all that much. But still.

At this point Chris must realize that not many girls are going to make it out of Deadwood. With Ashley I. and Kelsey still stranded in the Badlands fighting over who gets to sleep in that bed and Megan gone, his farmer “scarcity warning” “conserve resources” reflex must have kicked in because he cancelled the rose ceremony and decides to bring them all back to Iowa. I mean, who needs a rose ceremony to eliminate contestants when you have Iowa to do the work for you?

Chris announces that they’ll all be heading to Iowa, or as he calls it, “God’s Country.” Based on what I have seen of his hometown, I would be inclined to agree. It’s totally God’s Country…like Old Testament God’s Country. Specifically the part of the Old Testament where God totally screwed Job and took everything good away from him just to mess with him and see how long it would take for him to crack. You know, kind of like the producers are doing with the girls this season.

Chris brings the girls to Des Moines, which for the sake of comparison, is like bringing someone “home” to New York City when you actually live in Amishville, Pennsylvania. The girls have clearly prepared themselves for the worst and lowered their expectations accordingly. Carly marvels at the fact that Iowa has trees.

Date 1: Jade

“Jade, join me in my home town.”

Jade gets the date card, and some serious shade from the other girls. It also starts to become apparent that something is up with Britt—she’s cracking. Her desire to be the center of attention/the object of Chris’ affection directly conflicts with her desire to never live in a cornfield in Iowa. The result is a fabulous shitstorm of self-sabotage, insecurity, lies, denial and crying that make reality TV gold.

On the 3-4 hour drive to Arlington Jade says exactly two things:

1. “So much corn…”

2. “Aw, cows.”

That is really all there was to say.

Arlington is so much worse than we ever could have expected. It’s not a small town—it’s not even a town. It’s barely a place. There are no people, all of the businesses are closed, there is no community to speak of—there are not even any cars driving on the road. THIS ISN’T EVEN A PLACE THAT PEOPLE PASS THROUGH TO GET TO OTHER PLACES. Chris walks Jade through the “downtown” area and points out what all of the deserted buildings used to be. “That used to be a bar where we’d all hang out…that used to be a grocery store.” You see what I mean about the Old Testament? Scorched earth. For reals.

Chris takes Jade to a football game at his old high school. The most notable thing about this is that there are actually people there. He gives her a tour of the high school, since that is literally the only open building in Arlington. Chris REALLY loves his high school. He calls out the cheer (unprompted) and points out every trophy and banner that his name is on. To be fair, it totally makes sense why he loved high school so much—it’s the last time in his life when he was guaranteed to be around other humans on a daily basis.

Chris excitedly tells the camera: “The whole community [is here], cheering hard”—the camera cuts to group of unenthused cheerleaders in T-shirts and jeans, staring deadpan at the football field while limply holding pompoms.

At the end of the date, Chris and Jade make out on the football field. This happens to be the most action that the residents of Arlington have seen…ever. They still have dial-up so Internet porn isn’t really a thing…unless rebuffering really gets you off.

Chris asks Jade, “What do you think of Arlington?”

Jade responds by employing the most effective diversion tactic to date: “What do YOU think of Arlington?” She says he seems insecure about his town. They talk more about that. Well played, Jade. Well played.

Carly organizes a road trip to Arlington with the other girls to figure out what the lack of fuss is about. They’re definitely the most excited group of people to ever knowingly be headed to Arlington, Iowa. The girls cheer as they pass the “Welcome to Arlington” sign. However, they’re forced to cut their cheers short when they realize they’ve passed through the entire town in under 30 seconds.

Wait….THIS is what cornfields look like!?

Wait….THIS is what cornfields look like!?

It looks like a scene from a post apocalyptic movie as the group of scantily clad girls walks down the desolate downtown street, looking at all the abandoned buildings, rattling deadlocked doors, and peering in boarded up windows.

They finally find a person standing outside of his house and their exchange really tells you all you need to know about Chris’ hometown:

Girls: “What do people do in Arlington?”

Resident: “They go someplace else.”

To be fair, there is a large city less than 20 minutes away from Arlington. It’s probably not actually a place created by a vengeful God to test people’s faith and/or punish sinners. BUT it is HILARIOUS how badly the producers are trying to make it look like the set of 28 Days Later and simultaneously sell it as a prize worth winning. They’re so high on power at this point they think they can dangle literally anything in front of women and have them fight over it. Next season’s bachelor will be a drug addict with chlamydia and a terrible credit score. But all of the interviews will consist of the girls claiming they can “see past that,” because “when you really love someone…what STDs they have, and what felonies they have committed…they just don’t really matter” [cue the glossy eyes and naïve smile]. But cornfields, man. That is a hard no.

Solo Date 2: Whitney

Des Moines

This date was pretty boring, I’m not going to lie. Chris explains that their Nikon commercial date is going to be spent taking pictures of them being in love—which apparently means eating each others faces, in public, all day.

Places Whitney and Chris kiss on their date:

  • Under a handful of leaves that Whitney threw
  • In a bicycle basket
  • In front of the social services building
  • On a bridge
  • In a parking lot, while standing in a shadow

Afterwards he takes her to a bar where for some reason they keep showing a bartender cutting a block of ice with a saw. It’s here that they just happen to run into his “3 best guy friends,” who waste no time grilling Whitney on “what love means to her,” and “how she knows she’s in love.” You know, LIKE BROS DO. Whitney gladly answers all of these face-palm worthy questions with the enthusiasm of a Miss America contestant. Afterwards they give her their “blessing”— just like all your whiskey-loving, cigar-smoking, cattle-rearing man-friends like to do after a super macho night of exploring the meaning of love. Come on, Producers. Get it together.

Once Chris’ friends leave, Whitney yells over the bar noise that she is an orphan. She then maintains a pageant-contestant smile while telling Chris about the tragic death of her mother. Chris seems to handle sad news much better when he gets it from someone who could just as easily be telling him that he won the lottery. He takes her outside and surprises her by revealing that one of the pictures of them kissing is painted on the side of the building. Whitney seems more genuinely excited about this mural than I have been cumulatively about every exciting thing that has ever happened to me.

 

Group Date: Britt, Kaitlyn, Carly

Chris takes the girls to play hockey, which he seems to think means falling.

Britt wastes no time lying her face off to Chris about how much she loves Arlington. She tries to sugar-coat her initial “hell no” reaction by saying that she was a little shocked at first, but that SEEING THE SUN SET on her way home made her realize that it would be a lovely place to live.

Fun fact: The sun sets literally everywhere. It cannot be the sole selling point of a location. That would be like saying you decided you absolutely wanted to buy a product after seeing that it had a barcode…or that you love a certain kind of food because it’s edible.

Chris seems shocked (but desperate to believe) that she actually loves Arlington (home to 4 empty buildings and a lot of cornfields). He says, “really?” about 5 times.

Britt: “I loved it.”

Chris: “Really?”

Britt: “Yeah…I really…liked it.”

Carly is having none of this. She uses her alone time to get real with Chris about Britt. Carly warns Chris that he might not be seeing the “real” Britt, and implies that Britt is being fake and lying about her desire to live in Iowa. Because let’s be real—Britt is about as likely to stay in Arlington as small business. Even better: Britt has as much of a future in Arlington as Chris has in academia.

It’s almost like some magical spell got cast right when Carly said that because somehow everything Britt did from that point forward proved Carly’s point. For example, when Chris asked her more about her first impression of Iowa, Britt made the truly unfortunate choice of talking about how she likes to “reinvent” herself and how she has been “so many different things” throughout her life. You could see the wheels in Chris’ head turning like the wheels of a car trying to get up an icy hill.

Next Chris talks to Kaitlyn, who is struggling a little bit because she hearts him and he’s been too busy abandoning girls in the desert and trying to make Iowa seem cool to pay attention to her. He panics when he sees that she is sad and runs to get the rose, which is of course right in front of Britt. If passive aggression could kill, Chris would be dead. Fortunately (or unfortunately) that’s the thing about passive aggression…by definition it lacks the force to kill. Britt seems to realize this because after flipping her hair, rolling her eyes, sighing loudly, and cracking her knuckles to no avail, she switches gears and gets actively aggressive.

She was basically like, I TOLD YOU ALL OF THE THINGS THAT I THOUGHT YOU WANTED TO HEAR. I SHOULD GET THE ROSE!

She then throws down a veritable minefield of validation traps and forces Chris to try and navigate them. She says she’s upset that he doesn’t see her as #1 because her husband should see her as #1. This is a totally valid point in the regular world of dating. Unfortunately, it is not at all in keeping with the set-up of this show. On the Bachelor, ONLY the Bachelor gets to be #1 the whole time. When Chris refuses to tell her that she is his favorite in front of the other two girls, Britt tries to get him to say how much he wants her there by vaguely threatening to leave. Again, Chris sidesteps the validation trap, leaving her a crying mess, and Carly high on her victory.

Sweetest compliment of the week goes to Kaitlyn, for saying: “He’s not an idiot…He really isn’t.” MARRY HER, PLAY-DOH.

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3 Comments on “The Bachelor Season 19 Episode 8, A.K.A. “IOWANNA GO HOME!””

  1. plumgrape February 25, 2015 at 10:24 am #

    Good fun, good report well written. Thank you.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Fragments from the Book of Job #4: chapters 27-31 | Free Christadelphians: Belgian Ecclesia Brussel - Leuven - February 25, 2015

    […] The Bachelor Season 19 Episode 8, A.K.A. “IOWANNA GO HOME!” […]

  2. Fragments from the Book of Job #3: chapters 21-26 | Free Christadelphians: Belgian Ecclesia Brussel - Leuven - February 25, 2015

    […] The Bachelor Season 19 Episode 8, A.K.A. “IOWANNA GO HOME!” […]

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