Every season on The Bachelor, there’s one moment guaranteed to make me want to vomit. Okay, that happens eight times an episode, but seriously, I can always taste the bile when the bachelor dumps the runner-up, tries to coax her into sharing how heartbroken she’s feeling (loud enough for the cameras, please), puts her in a limo, and then prepares to get down on one knee and propose marriage to another woman. How is it the “lucky” bachelorette can accept such an offer when some other broad’s tears haven’t yet evaporated off the bachelor’s shoulder?
Last night, though, on the season finale of The Bachelor: Bar Owner and a Texas Millionaire, Brad pulled a fast one. (Click here to read Bachelor producer Mike Fleiss’ take on the brouhaha.) Brad went to Chopard and “bought” a ring (on ABC’s Master Card, perhaps?). He flashed his abs one last time while putting on his crisp white shirt. He stood before Jenni (right) and told her how from the moment he met her, he was taken aback by her
gummy “beautiful smile.” And then he kicked her to the curb, told her how much he (!) was hurting, and sent her away. Maybe she wore one too many strapless, elastic-top, baby-doll dresses. Maybe it was the way she sobbed uncontrollably while giving her desperate declaration of love: “I just need you to know that I would do whatever it takes — whatever it takes — to make you happy and to make this work.” Maybe it was her failure to make a homemade lasagna or a promise that she’d move directly to Texas — without passing go and without spending another season as a Phoenix Suns dancer — that caused Brad to reject her. Whatever the reason, Jenni was history, like the Dead-Sea Scrolls. I just wish she hadn’t been so damn gracious and told Brad she hoped he’d end up truly happy.
Enter, DeAnna (left), clad in a tragically unflattering gold baby-doll dress,led to her fate on the arm by smarmy hostbot Chris Harrison. And therewas Brad, declaring how “marriage is one time and one time only,” andthen suddenly, stepping away from DeAnna, circling like anuncomfortable cat trying to fluff up its bedding, rubbing his handstogether, and delivering this whopper of a monologue: “I want so badlyto be so confident. To pick you up and twirl you around and give you adiamond ring and spend my life with you. But I can’t look you in theeye and tell you that I love you. I can’t. I can’t give you any promisethat I can’t keep. I refuse to do that. I have to tell you goodye.”BAM! Brad’s twin brother Chad would not be gaining asister-in-law/employee bartender after all. Maybe it was DeAnna’sfailure to let a dripping wet Brad hug her after his brothers tossedhim in a pool. Maybe Brad was disturbed by the way DeAnna’s eyelashesbatted at the speed of a hummingbird’s wings every time they were alonetogether. Maybe it was DeAnna’s totally ferocious declaration that ifthey ended up together, she was going to want “the dishes put where Iwant. The laundry done the way I want.” (Side note: This is a totallyreasonable request, even if my husband would vehemently argueotherwise.) It was a doozy of a moment, yes, but oddly underwhelming from adramatic standpoint. Brad’s blank expression, his inability toarticulate his thoughts, and especially his unrelenting determinationto follow ABC’s rules and try to get DeAnna to burst into tears allmade the whole experience feel oddly inorganic.
The best partof the night was seeing DeAnna reject her role as fawning patsy. WhenBrad turned to her and pleaded, “Do you know how much I care aboutyou?,” Deanna’s response — “No, I don’t.” — felt genuine, andgenuinely refreshing. I mean, imagine you’re expecting an engagementring, you get a big old boot — on national television? Are you reallygoing to smile and hug the dude and wish him every happiness? Or areyou going to place your hand on your hip, cock your head to one side,and offer up a bellowing, “Aw hell no!”? Okay, so DeAnna wasprobably under contractual obligation to exit the building hand-in-handwith Brad, but at least she never doubted her own fabulousness duringher exit interview, leaving Brad to stand there, confused, asking”You’re closing me out here, aren’t you?” Um, yeah, Sherlock.
Unfortunately,though, Brad’s shocking anti-decision, and his complete lack ofexplanation for breaking up with both women, means that I’ll be forcedto tune in to ABC again tonight, for The Bachelor: After the FinalRose. And in a way, it makes me a lot like Brad, since I’ll be goingthrough not one, but two, painful breakups.
What did you thinkof the episode? Did you see the twist coming from a mile away or was ita total shocker to you? And how do you think Brad will explain himselftonight?