I am posting this one week before my due date! I don’t know if that is very sad or very awesome. Let’s go with VERY AWESOME.
So I am pretty sure at the top of the episode there is a quick Bentley flashback. I beg of all 3 people reading this site: what did I miss this season in the way of them falling in love? All I remember is lots of Bentley alone camera time where he is laying out his dastardly plan. Sigh. Oh and a reminder that Ashley whispers in repeat: “dot dot dot”. Double sigh.
Chiang Mai must be trending this week on the internets as The Bachelorette brought it into the homes of possibly a new target travel audience: losers like us. And bonus is the cartoon map of Thailand with flying cartoon plane! The men are stoked and Ames fervently believes that Chiang Mai is a great place to fall in love… “because of the monks.” If you say so.
I have some random thoughts as the men are told they are staying at the sweet-ass Mandarin Oriental Hotel and those are:
I am not into Nick’s soul patch. Chris Harrison has maybe the best job on Planet Earth.
Finally, Ashley is walking along pensively while voiceover Ashley in the sky is talking about emerging from a dark place. Don’t kid yourself, babydoll. Your dark place is lifelong until you get some therapy.
Let’s Fall in Love in Chiang Mai date with Ben F
I am always impressed when this far along in the season, we still have to use last name initials. Where are Chantal/Shawntel when you need them?! Oh I just got wistful for a second- this season would be soooo much better if Chantal was the B’ette. Oy! I just added to Ashley’s insecurities.
When the date starts, my friend and I look at each other and say, “Wait. Didn’t Ben F already have a date with Ash?” And then we realize that was Constantine. Hardy har. I was a little disconcerted that the men had just arrived, the date announced and then Ashley just walks in to get Ben F. I would have like, I don’t know, wanted to brush my teeth or something.
Theirs is an “unspoken mutual attraction.” Mmkay. And then, my biggest pet peeve- Ashley waxes on about how Ben F is such a good sport about just meandering and goofing around the market. And so I will say it again: is that a legitimate compliment to someone? Congratulations, dude. You got a free trip to tropical paradise across the world and you are being really cool about shopping and taking in the local sights with a hot girl. Here is a dog biscuit for you.
Now there are Love Birds being painted on parasols. I actually find this arts & crafts project maybe even a little metrosexual for my taste. But Ben F is a winemaker in Sonoma (CLOSE THE DEAL ON THIS CATCH!) so I am sure he is in touch with his creative and romantic side.
And then the happy couple sits awkwardly in front of a Buddhist temple and talks about how they want to kiss but can’t so they will close their eyes and imagine it. There is some weird foreplay going on and I feel a little gross. Bring on dinnertime.
I like the top half of Ashley’s strapless patterned pantsuit. Not sure about the leg length. The two eat amongst flower circles and Ashley debriefs the day’s dates. I squirm because it’s annoying to do that. “And then remember we went here, and then there, and then you said that…”
Ben F describes winemaking and how he just became emotionally available a year ago and praises his dead father and his parents’ marriage. And then a bunch of scantily clad hot Thai women come out. Which doesn’t seem fair. Cue passionate kiss.
Love is Worth Fighting For group date
Worst date ever. Make a bunch of guys engage in blood sport. This is a family show, people! Get back to wet humping in a hot tub where you belong!
The blood sport to be exact is Muay Thai boxing. Some type of martial arts that just looks like a lot of punching to me. I am pretty sure that’s what the guys did anyway because there is no way in an hour of training, they all actually learned Muay Thai technique.
We note during the warm up that Ash is very fit, still has her very flat stomach and that these guys have all been pumping iron and been greased up with Vaseline. Not my type but I am guessing the ladies at home are loving it. For me, those scrawny Thai bodies looked more the part.
Anyway, there is lots of testosterone flying which must have been why Blake had a weird lapse and said, “Spandex was made for people like [Ashley]” followed by, I am pretty sure, him licking his lips.
Meanwhile, Ames who is not being derogatory, is polite and takes the last boxing outfit, which happens to be pink. Plenty of guys wear pink. What is the biggie?
Blake beats Lucas. JP beats Mickey and he is a JEW FROM LONG ISLAND!! Boo ya! I am married to a Jew from Long Island. They are good stock.
Ryan beats Ames because I am pretty sure Ames is a peace-loving Buddhist who takes cooking classes and meditates atop mountains. This puts into motion the rest of this date’s story arc: Ames gets woozy and bloodshot eyes and bloody nose and dizzy and has to get taken by ambulance to a Thai Hospital with half-lit up neon lights. Ashley does not do the right thing and neither accompanies Ames to the hospital or gives him the group date rose that night. Which has lowered her in my esteem.
Then some other guys fight I think.
Morale is low because good-natured Ames might be off dying somewhere. Despite that, Ryan does not conceal very well his delight of kicking Ames’ ass when chatting with Ash. He points out his facial injuries, maybe hoping for a little kissiepoo. Then in another one on one, Mickey breaks it down that if you’ve never been punched before, you’re at a disadvantage. Duly noted.
Then, all of a sudden, Ames triumphantly returns! Wearing a suit while all the rest of the guys have short-sleeved plaid on. Yeah, Ames! But Ames is still out of it and when talking to Ashley gets tongued-tied and asks for a “rain check on hanging out”.
Blake the dentist is worried he is shy and things are progressing slowly. Love is a Marathon, not a Sprint. He doesn’t trust relationships that are hot and heavy out of the gate. This made Ashley think of Bentley and she is taking it as an epiphany. Groan. But it’s enough for her to give Blake the rose later.
Lucas is a golfer and Ashley exclaims very loudly, YOU’RE A GOLFER??!! As though it is crazy that someone would have golf as a hobby. And then they both do that cheesy man-training-woman-in-golf-stance crapola in so many rom coms. I don’t get it. Then Lucas calls out Ashley for being attracted to Bentley.
Guide Me to Love 2 on 1 date with Ben C and William
I am already tense with this trifecta. Ben C seems more genuine and his hug to Ashley was sweeter.
Ashley says I hope we can not think about the dreaded format of this date… yeah, okay. The three paddle down some body of water on some wooden raft. When they get to shore, things take a nosedive.
William says he can be the funniest guy in the room, the most romantic guy in the room or biggest d*ck in a room. Way to sell yourself.
William then throws Ben C under an elephant and says Ben C is looking forward to the “dating sites” when he gets home, that Ben C expects to “clean up”. Ashley buys it immediately and gets yet another opportunity to discuss her insecurities. William, what about bro code?
But I am actually shocked how quickly Ashley finishes off this issue. She basically immediately kicks Ben C off the date – no questioning, no allowing him to explain, no trying to suss out William’s motives or determine if he is a credible source. She just decides William is absolutely right and that third person gossip hearsay joking from the house is gospel. So now this puddle of insecurity who is so easily scammed by Bentley momentarily becomes a confident expert in character judgment. My mouth is agape.
And apparently, Ben C’s joke about dating sites is worse than William trashing Ashley’s small boobs to millions. As though all the guys don’t say a bunch of ridiculous shit in the house. Ugh. Ben C’s dismissal was swift and unsettling. Buh bye, I guess.
At dinner Ashley’s off-the-shoulder dress doesn’t match William’s plaid shirt. For some reason plaid doesn’t seem to go with the Chiang Mai Mandarin Oriental vibe. Moving on from that, William agrees he wants to be a 30 year-old boy and still has a lot to do as a silly boy. Ashley, meanwhile, is not feeling anything anymore for this Peter Pan character. No spark. I will give her credit for just being honest and sending him home. She’s looking for a MAN. A GOOD DIVORCED CON ARTIST MAN LIKE BENTLEY. BOO YA.
William’s exit confessional gets a little weird. He feels like a loser and the world’s biggest jackass. He goes back home to nothing. He deserves nothing. Maybe these two kids had more in common that we realized.
And then when ABC staffers come to take William’s suitcase from the house, Ryan P kicks it. Which actually makes me laugh out loud.
Ashley dramatically throws the rose in the fire.
Ryan P wants to break it down again about how much he is into Ashley. I always feel like he has prepared these little talks. THE BUGS ARE SO LOUD in the background, right?
Constantine feels like Ashley is just a real girl. She agrees that she is a dork and kooky. Constantine feels closer to the guys than Ashley. Honesty may not have been the best policy in this instance. Then he goes back and tells the guys he doesn’t have enough of a gut feeling to know he wants to marry her.
Ashley not feeling herself. She is insecure. Yawny yawny.
JP is being cute and Ashley is pulling back and shocker, THINKING ABOUT BENTLEY. JP is way too good for this chick.
Ashley then has a long boring chat with Chris Harrison about how she is still hung up on Bentley. She needs to be “released” from his grasp. She is basically asking ABC for a chance to talk to Bentley. I wonder what will happen next week.
(Ben and Blake)
Poor Nick. He never had a chance for a date. But his surfer/trainer look never jelled with me anyway.
We have to hear more about Bentley. He is in the hotel and something is telling Ashley’s brain that he is the one. The guys are mad and she cries.