bachelor ben finale and ATFR recap: oh my dad, you’ll never believe who ben chose

You're my forever(ish).

Of course we all knew all along who Ben was going to choose, but because I pride myself on managing to avoid all spoilers being hurled in my face, there are only two ways I finally knew how it would all conclude: 1. That Courtney was allowed to show up at last week’s WTA and pimp her fake apologies, and 2. That I had no emails from friends and family when I woke up this morning.

Happy Tuesday!

Actually it is pretty happy. This particular season ending is a huge weight off my shoulder. Although I will miss my son’s British accent when he says “Bachelor”. He gets so excited when the show is on. #myfault

But before I gloat that I am cleansing myself of Ben + Courtney = True Love Always, we might as well for old time’s sake blog about it one more time. Whaddya say? Tonight Hubs came home a bit late, and I was annoyed because we had to turn the flat upside down for family coming into town tomorrow. I heard him before I saw him and when I looked up in the doorway, a lone red rose was peeking out past the door. One long solitary rose on a stem. And then he burst forward exclaiming “Happy Bachelor Finale!” I die. Thank you loyal blog reader, great friend and Most Pukey Prego Ever, Erin, for making my husband do that. You are a credit to this franchise.

On to the show! It’s kind of nice to see a finale set in snowy mountains, rather than a tropical destination. I am appreciating this change of pace. There are less bikinis, so there’s that.

Chris Harrison’s voiceover proclaims this “The most controversial finale in Bachelor history.” I give credit to the production team who finally came up with a new adjective after a decade. But to be fair, dramatic would have been a bold-faced lie.

Ben races to Zermatt, Switzerland on a train with dramatic music lending a certain flourish to the affair. We see the Swiss Alps. The Matterhorn. Ben says: “Monumental mountain. Monumental moment… I have two women who I am madly in love with.” I think he says that. Is it possible he is lying so seriously already?

Lindzi: Lights up a room.

Courtney: I still have concerns.

While Ben pretends he has a difficult decision at hand, the season’s theme song by David Gray plays. I think it’s worth a look at the lyrics.

The Matterhorn gives Ben hope. I don’t care about Ben but I do want to fly to Switzerland immediately. But first, his mom and sister arrive and it makes Ben want to cry. He loves and misses them, and he clearly is very close to them. They make him feel like “home” and like his “back-up has arrived.”

Ben describes the girls to his mom and sis to prepare them for the meetings. He actually has to mention that Courtney was a bit of a troublemaker when sister Julia asks if there was anyone in the house who none of the other girls liked. Considering that’s a weird question when it’s down to two, and one I have never seen a family member ask before, I am going to give Julia props for being well-coached by a producer.

Lindzi with Ben’s family

We might as well keep this short. Which is easy because all the signs point to Not Going to Happen. Ben and Lindzi are happy to see each other but I just don’t see the wow factor of laying your eyes again on the person you’re head over heels for. Lindzi is nervous and fumbly (does she sense her demise is imminent?). Ben is not even bothering to sell her.

The only interesting part of the interview process and contrived lunch is when sister Julia uses her alone time with Lindzi to ask for the scoop on Courtney. If Julia thought Lindzi even had a remote chance of winning she would try to get to know her future sister-in-law, but still it’s got my attention. Lindzi comes off as a master of diplomacy. Her biggest knock on Courtney is to say they are very different from one another. As my childminder says: “Lindzi hasn’t slagged her off!” That’s right. Lindzi is a beacon of civility. And proof that she and Courtney really are incredibly different. (In fact, ever the frontrunner but never one to miss an opportunity to shit-talk, later when asked about her pretend competition, Courtney accuses Lindzi of having no depth.)

Julia thinks Lindzi would fit right in and Mom says Lindzi is a lovely person. They totally did a good job reading their cue cards.

Courtney with Ben’s family

Much as I am enjoying the one-second possibility that sister Julia will be a chink in Courtney’s omnipotence, I am actually concerned she is not going into the Model Courtney meeting with an open mind. I guess I want Courtney’s repellant personality to be her foil, not her professional occupation.

Ben speaks to his family and deludes himself in what is becoming a pattern of saying things to the effect that the Courtney who no one likes is not the real Courtney. Either he is discounting that multiple personalities is a real condition, or he is insinuating something more sci fi like Courtney being possessed or replaced by a robot. Whatever his interpretation, it’s working for Little Ben.

When the true lovers meet and greet, Ben says he’s nervous and Courtney says in her baby voice, “Aww, you’re nervous because you like me.” And then she passes him a note she wrote in Homeroom that she folded up in origami.

The family meeting with Courtney starts off immediately with Courtney explaining what it meant that she was a model and that the girls in the house did not like her. In her explanation, Courtney kind of reinvents history but also admits maybe her behavior wasn’t the best. Then later with just mom Barbara, Courtney calls Ben “smart, funny (my cheeks hurt when she gets home) and the best”.

Now the craziest moment of the entire episode comes: Sister Julia tells Ben that she is shocked and blown away by how amazing Courtney is. And additionally that Courtney would fit really well in the family. Julia is beaming. She actually used the word “shocked.” That’s how great she finds Courtney. WELL I AM SHOCKED TOO, JULIA. Come to think of it, how much of a hatchet job is the editing this time around? It would have been nice to at least see the parts where Courtney shocked and awed the fam.

Ben then basically proceeds to say he is so happy he has his mom and sister’s approval to go ahead and propose to Courtney. So, the episode is over? Not so fast. We all still have to p r e t e n d there are two potential life soul mates.


Ben rolls up in a horse-drawn carriage which seems weirdly emasculating. They go on a little carriage ride through Zermatt. And then Ben says they’re going skiing, which should have been the writing on the wall to Lindzi. Remember Bachelor contestants, if you get an adventure-type date at the end, you’re a goner. It’s a date where it’s impossible to be too intimate. They might as well have found some cage shark diving in Switzerland.

But Lindzi is innocent and hopeful and thinks that because they are sipping wine on the gondola (seems dangerous before skiing, no?), which ABC forced to halt long enough for a quick declaration of love by Lindzi, it’s a good date. No Lindzi, it’s a shit date. You don’t ski with someone you’re about to propose to. You feel them up.

Anyway, when said gondola is stopped and Lindzi is gushing to Ben, he is bright red and looks painfully like he wishes they would start moving again. I don’t think Courtney is awesome, or Ben for that matter, but I do always feel bad when it’s at the end of the season and the Bachelor or Bachelorette has to fake it with someone. That must feel gross and sucky.

Now let’s start keeping track of the cute thinks Lindzi says to Ben this date. #1: “I want to keep giving you everything, and be the best for you.” Awww.

Night night time. I like Lindzi’s gorgeous drapey shirt. It would be so good over a post-two pregnancies stomach. Note to self.

Cute Lindzi quote #2 and #3: “You wanna know what the great news is? It’s only going to get better.” And also she wants to be a “great fiancee” to Ben. She says both genuinely and it’s sweet and she rocks. (Well, I don’t know if she rocks. She may just have perpetually poor judgment in men.)

Ben’s body language is killing me. Lindzi doesn’t notice and keeps kissing him on the balcony while stroking the back of his head.


Helicopter arrives. Then they fly RIGHT NEXT TO THE MATTERHORN. Ben calls it “one of the top ten most incredible things I have done in my life” (after sex on top of a Mayan temple and skinny-dipping on national tv). I also think it’s ridiculous they are flying right next to the Matterhorn. And poor Lindzi had to ski with a bunch of Eurotrash. Ben makes a relationship/mountain metaphor/analogy/simile. “Our relationship is progressing to new heights.” They walk to a private lake with a picnic basket and everything goes to type. The winner gets the romance date.

With Courtney, Ben always asks her how she is doing and feeling. His body language is way into her and giddy and spontaneous. “With Courtney I am completely and utterly myself.” And they both talk in baby voices.

Night night time. Melissa the Childminder says the cushions on the couch are from Ikea. Is that possible at a nice hotel? Did Mike Fleiss’s production team add some Ikea pillows? Is there a Posessionista blog for Bachelor home accessories? For example, do they use scented candles or regular?

Courtney brought Ben a gift and did that thing no one actually does where she wrapped the top and bottom of the box separately so that he could just open it without unwrapping.

It’s a photo album of pictures of the two of them from all their dates. So because Courtney had to procure these from the show’s production staff, I want to know why that was allowed or fair. Why was it fair to have an extra date with Ben and skinny-dip? Why was it fair to get to come on WTA? I demand answers. The card she wrote has the symbol on the front for infinity. Please somebody file that away as Things That Will Be Interesting to Recall When Ben and Courtney Break Up later. She then reads from the love letter. I more wish she could just say how she feels instead of reading it since she is not even looking at him. Then she gets annoyed he can’t respond and they go back to the couch and have a weird, confusing talk where Courtney seems a little upset and defensive. I am flash-forwarding to the kind of actual girlfriend/wife she will be. It ain’t pretty.

Recap and Proposal Day montages while Ben walks around Zermatt

I like seeing Lindzi wake up in the morning with evening eye makeup. It’s actually racoon-like.

Neil Lane arrives. Ben says, “Nice to see you again.” which is funny.

Ben seems really happy. He is saying he is so happy and knows what he wants to do. I do feel glad for him in the moment. Even fated-to-end-badly happiness is happy.

The girls dress and Courtney’s make-up looks verrrry pretty. Her model looks will win the day. Although her black dress has too much bling on top for me for the daytime and the gloves are horrible.

Lindzi’s dress is way awesome with its navy blue feathers and more Switzerland-appropriate cape. Her earrings are too bling though for daytime and not surprisingly her make-up is waaaaay too much.

My stomach gets a butterfly. Apparently it thinks there might be a surprise ending! My stomach is such a romantic!

Ben stands at an overlook.

I guess he doesn’t need to talk to Chris Harrison.

The helicopter flies there. (Remember that one season when they switched the formula and the first person out of the limo got the proposal? I was thinking it would be cool if that happened again.) Poor Lindzi gets out and tries to walk in heels on a mountain. Ben looks crestfallen so hopefully Lindzi will know before the reject speech starts. Yeah right! Remember when Ben proposed to Ashley and got down on bended knee before he got a clue? It’s so obvious how Ben feels and is looking at her but Lindzi gives a little pep talk of love anyway. And then she says, “how are you feeling?” and it would have been great if Ben could have just said, not great, I’m sorry it’s not you. But instead he starts the whole long recap of their love and how great she is, before dumping her. And in case Lindzi didn’t hear it the first time, Ben says twice “I am in love with someone else.”

Lindzi’s parting words: “If things don’t work out, call me.” #4

Now Courtney in the helicopter. And you guys are NEVER going to believe this but she says something gratuitously narcissistic: “I’m a good person. And good things happen to good people.” The good people I know never talk about all the things they deserve for being good. But I wouldn’t be surprised if they grow them different in Scottsdale.

Ben is doing a good poker face. But then he says Courtney took his breath away before he starts his little journey and road and ups and downs speech. Ben’s hair is out of place. I don’t say that ironically. There is a chunk of it tucked behind the wrong ear.

“I think you’re an incredible woman.” “You are my forever.” “I’m in love with you. More than you’ll ever know.” (I am not throwing things at the tv. He is actually being romantic.) And then file this one away for when they break up: Ben does not take proposing lightly and never wants to do it again (sucks to be you, Ben’s Next Girlfriend).

Courtney doesn’t seem excited or giddy and she doesn’t cry. Ben monotone: “I will love you forever.” Courtney monotone: “I will love you forever.” Say the evil robots to one another.

That David Gray song plays. The one with the lyrics about lying. Mwahahahahahaha.


Ben and his stubble come out into the studio audience and declare he is still in love with Courtney. “The woman I saw on tv isn’t the Courtney that I know.” And now marks a future waste of 42:22 minutes of my life that I know I am going to endure because I am a slave to punishment.

There was a period of break-up when the show aired and the negative energy surrounding the airing of the show. Something about a magazine with photos of Ben and another woman. He swears on his father’s grave it didn’t happen. I feel so bad for his dead dad, btw. To screw with everyone then in the media, Courtney goes out and tries on wedding dresses. They admit they are the odd couple. But seriously, isn’t her trying on dresses some breach of her contract with ABC? Anyway, Ben spent Thanksgiving with Courtney’s family and they were fine for a month until the show started airing. Then Ben abandoned her when everything went haywire. Ben says the root of the problem was not being able to see each other and sit and talk about everything. There is lots more boring interview but the gist is that the media, and we the duped viewing public have soiled this for the happy couple. But they will persevere. For now.

The thing is, they really seem in love. And that part, in a vacuum, is very sweet. What’s not sweet is that Ben refuses to admit that Courtney has a mean streak, that Ben is the least gracious star of this show ever and won’t shut up about how terrible reality tv is (biting the hand that fed him a Model fiancée) and that no one will ever just explain with actual concrete examples who this supposedly actually-nice Courtney is. Ben gets defensive and just claims we all don’t know the real her. Then tell us, jerk. Throw a heartwarming anecdote to the wolves. Play the game.

Also, Lindzi doesn’t get to come out and confront Ben. This is a first and I feel bad she doesn’t get her two minutes to bitch on tv that Ben led her on. Chris Harrison has an explanation and it’s consistent with the season’s theme that the focus must constantly stay on Courtney. Producers, I want to rip your head off and verbally assault you. I am a good person, and good things (like verbally assaulting others) happen to good people.

Ashley and J.P.

So normal and boring I can’t even type about them.

Unfortunately, I think Emily’s season will suck. The show should just become Bachelor Pad and then at least everyone can just be their terrible selves and no one will get edited. Until then, my dear friends.



Filed under bachelor episode recap

10 responses to “bachelor ben finale and ATFR recap: oh my dad, you’ll never believe who ben chose

  1. Erin

    Frank never would have brought home a rose like that… I’m just saying…

    So, despite my feelings that the Courtney massacre has been way overdone, I did not think all along that Ben would ultimately decide she is his forever. (Just because I don’t think she is the direct spawn of the devil for being mean to people on a reality show doesn’t mean I think she’s automatically Ben’s soul mate.) I had started to realize over the last two weeks that its really the Bachelor-way for Courtney to “win”. I mean, who goes with the person who adores you, isn’t mad at you (for being made to live with other girls you are dating, on the dating reality show they signed up for) half the time, and has a family you instantly felt a connection with? Not Bachelors, that’s for sure. They need more. They need just a bit (or maybe more than a bit, sometimes) of crazy, and they need that uncomfortable feeling. There has to be some sort of medication that can make this stop. Can ABC start crushing meds in Bachelor apple sauce, or appletinis or something?

    I found the finale to be incredibly boring and predictable and I started getting angry with ABC. I actually mooned my tv in protest during the ATFR. True story. I can’t exactly have a glass of wine to dull the anger…

    • yael

      Mooning your tv is amazing. You always take things to the perfect level.

      There have been some interesting articles positing that Courtney won because she played them game best: used mind games and overt sexuality to win, because ultimately men will always prefer that over anything normal. Consistent with your assessment!

  2. Jenny

    Can we discuss that they are taking applications from viewers to be on Bachelor Pad?!? That’s hilarious!

    • yael

      I heard that! What I want to know is if the fan has to submit to a bathing suit portion of the interview. I would like to see an actually normal person go in the house!

  3. Thanks Yael for making this season bearable. Your bog is the best!!!! xoxo Davida

  4. Faye

    My random thoughts:
    Didn’t it seem like the two finalists were in helicopter wars? Were they both flying at same time? Did they reuse the helicopter for Courtney that Lindsay used? Was Courtney circling, waiting and cackling while Linsay was being rejected?
    Loved the sweater Ben wore during Courtney’s date – the chunky zip up.
    Ben’s sister’s hat was laughably horrible
    How many times can Ben’s sister say ‘Red flag’?
    Did Courtney really say: I’m a good person and good things happen to good people.
    What was the temp in Zermatt? Lindsay was outside in shorts/tank top? Was anyone else concerned?
    Omdad, gross!
    After rose
    But she tried on wedding dresses before finale. Is that against abc?
    I hate this show. I will watch again and again and again.

    • yael

      I know, right. I really do think trying on the wedding dress had to be a breach of her contractual obligations. It’s just yet another of our burning questions that will never get answered : (

  5. Elizabeth

    Ben’s “I did not kiss those women” line was beyond ridiculous.

    Based on Courtney’s ATFR performance, I’m reassessing my opinion that she is coldly manipulative. Instead, I think she is incredibly high maintenance emotionally. I think all of her manipulative behaviour derived from need, not strategy.

  6. sonjey

    I counted the word “incredible” spoken by Ben……. 28 times in one hour!

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