Welcome back the new and improved Bachelor, now with 50% less dignity. After being dumped twice at the alter, it makes sense that ABC would cast a wide net to find Nick a diverse group of women who are beautiful, smart and completely void of self-awareness.
Nick’s bachelorettes move into the
museum of broken relationships Bachelor mansion, toasting to how amazing they think Nick is, while Chris Harrison chuckles under his breath. “Give them time,” he whispers leaving behind a date card and a 30-day supply of Xanax as he slips out the door.
“Group dates can be weird” Nick explains, bringing the ladies to the only modeling job he’s successfully booked since moving to Los Angeles. The women are greeted by photographer Franco who doles out a handful of wedding dresses designed by Desiree Hartsock for a wedding-themed photoshoot.
Although Nick could wear one of the suits from all the other times he’s proposed on national television, he proves to the viewers (and his agent at Wilhelmina) that he’s a versatile actor, seamlessly transitioning into the groom at a Vegas wedding, biker wedding, shotgun wedding and an Adam and Eve wedding, which I am not sure is even a thing. After receiving the first kiss and her name first on the list, Corinne’s photo is last — giving her plenty of time to consider the light, her angles, and how much Champagne will be necessary to make taking her top off on a first date seem like a good idea.
She nails it. Franco the photographer declares her the winner, because it’s 2017 and #feminism.
Corinne is high on confidence and, well, Champagne, I guess, stealing Nick for the first one-on-one time, during the evening part of the date. The girls quickly sniff her out as the kind of person who isn’t here to make friends. And then, to prove it, Corinne takes two more opportunities to interrupt Nick when he’s talking to the other women. Once when he has a stain on his shirt and once when he turns his shirt backwards so we don’t notice the stain on his shirt. The date ends with an inspirational
slur speech by Corinne informing the other women that she received the date rose by “just being herself.”
Thanks for answering the question nobody asked, Corinne.
Danielle, the soft spoken neonatal nurse from Nashville (try saying that one five times fast) scores the first one-on-one date, a helicopter ride to a yacht, with a helipad slightly smaller than Liz’s back tattoo. They “cheers” to not being in the mansion and get to know one another.
But things back at home aren’t so rosy. Liz is troubled about her secret past with Nick and also did anyone notice there is a dead body in the kitchen?
In case you missed the first 300 times she mentioned it, Liz met Nick at a wedding nine months ago. She knows. And he knows. Tanner and Jade know. All of America knows. But nobody in the house knows, and she’s got to do something about that. So she rustles up her closest friend in the house,
Pebbles Christen, for a little poolside confessional. Over some brontosaurus burgers, she reveals the very, very, very intimate details of her night with Nick. Christen is even more perplexed by this news than she is by Liz’s back tattoo.
I, on the other hand, am 50/50 on it.
The final group date goes to the women who are early contenders for the friendzone: Christen, Josephine, Astrid, Liz, Jaimi and Kristina. Liz predicts it’s going to be the most uncomfortable situation she’s ever been in in her life, which is rich considering she has a tattoo the size of a newborn on her back.
Nick brings the ladies to the second most depressing museum in America: the Museum of Broken Relationships. It’s basically a gallery where people bring old shit their exes left behind, including a dog brush, some old letters, a cheerleading uniform and an eyesore of a diamond ring that Nick claims to have “donated” after not proposing to Caitlin. Before anyone (me) can ask if they subbed out the Neil Lane diamond for a CZ, they are interrupted by the sound of a couple shouting in the next room.
It’s a fight as believable as Josephine’s hair extensions, so when the museum director reveals that they’ll be participating in a live simulation, breaking up with Nick in front of a live audience it’s no surprise to anyone -not to mention all too familiar to our twice-spurned Bachelor.
Each woman provides a glimpse into what she imagines her life will look like with Nick – the picture of a serial cheating, drinking, slob with bad oral hygiene. But then Liz (and her journal) take the stage. Retelling the story of how she first met Nick, Liz reveals a story of two strangers, meeting by chance but ultimately separated by vulnerability. She wishes him well, leaving their relationship with closure and dignity.
Or that’s what would have happened if Shonda Rhimes wrote the show.
But she didn’t. And there are still a lot of ill-fitting backless rompers in Liz’s suitcase that won’t wear themselves. So Liz flashes Nick a smile and grabs his hand leaving him, the audience and the entire mental health community wondering what just happened.
Nick changes into a camouflage jacket and his Hardy Boys underpants, because it’s time to get to the bottom of things. He interrogates the other ladies, including Christen who is only too eager to spill the very intimate details that Liz shared with her earlier in the day. Just remember, Christen, snitches get stitches. (RIP: Leah Block.)
That’s all the evidence Nick needs to confront his former paramour on her real agenda: is she into him, or is she just here to steal his spot on Dancing with the Stars? Liz bumbles through an explanation that includes something about Paradise and not liking to talk on the phone with people she knows. Nick weighs that against some of his other relationships – particularly the ones with women who are okay sitting on the sidelines while he dry humps Corinne in the pool – and decides that there’s no future for him with Liz.
She’s all yours, Customer Service dude at AT&T.
And, unlike Nick, you already have her number.