Once again this episode starts with the fallout from the last elimination. As you can see, the anger management classes aren’t exactly working for Chris. He’s an angry little elf, isn’t he? Michael had a great line when he said Chris was taking up “all the a-hole space” in the house. You know things are getting out of hand when even Michael Stagliano thinks you’re being a dill-weed.
This week’s challenge, “The Great Fall of China,” really did seem simple when I was explaining it, but as you saw, it was pretty difficult to execute. I can’t begin to tell you how much fun we had coming up with the names of the challenges this season. To think there could be that many seemingly “intelligent” adults having a conversation about “Hot Sludge Funday” or “The Great Fall of China” is outstanding. But that’s why we get the big bucks — we’re making important decisions that will change the world for the better!
The only thing better than naming this challenge was seeing how excited Blakely was about it. She really felt her many years of training at Hooters would have prepared her for this challenge better than anyone else. But really, the only thing even better than naming these challenges and Blakeley’s excitement is how utterly annoyed Chris gets with Blakeley now. Pretty much anything and everything she does sets him off. Blakeley absolutely knows this now and seems to be having fun pushing his buttons.
As I said, the challenge was difficult and the girls were especially having a tough time with it. As anticipated, Blakeley was good and it looked like she was going to win several times but the wind was blowing hard that day and she just couldn’t get across the finish line. At one point, the women were breaking so much china, we thought we might run out. We had already cleaned out the local Bed Bath & Beyond as well as Costco. In what looked to be the mother of all upsets, Sarah crossed the finish line first but as you saw she clearly used her hand to steady the china in the middle of the course and had to be disqualified. So in the end, Blakeley did score the big victory, much to the dismay of Chris, but much to the delight of everyone who has ever worked at a Hooters. When Blakeley’s new partner, Tony, won for the boys (he claims he has never worked at Hooters, but we’re looking into this) it appeared it was all over for Chris and Sarah — but nothing’s ever that simple in Bachelor Pad.
Because Tony and Blakeley went on a date together, Kalon got a date. I’m very glad that you finally got to see more of what I think is the most shocking surprise at Bachelor Pad: Kalon and Lindzi. Who would’ve ever imagined that the mean guy from Emily’s season would end up with one of the sweetest girls from Ben’s season? It’s amazing, but somehow it works, and their relationship moved pretty quickly. If I’d told you before this season started that Kalon would be the good guy and Chris would be one of the most hated, would you have believed it?
Tony and Blakeley became new partners this week, and it appears that after their camping date that they have become much more than that. Again, who would’ve ever predicted this pairing? Like Forrest Gump said, Bachelor Pad is like a box of chocolates, you just never know what you’re gonna get. I hope all of you true Bachelor fans recognized the salty voice crooning while Blakeley and Tony were dancing to that country song. If the lyrics didn’t sound familiar or ring any bells, go back and listen to it again.
One of the most awkward moments I’ve seen this season (and that’s saying a hell of a lot) was talking to Ed about his relationship with Jaclyn. It was really a simple softball question that Ed could have easily answered without really saying too much. But in typical Ed fashion, he walked up to a bonfire and threw a tank of gasoline on it, and then was shocked that it blew up in his face. The look on Jaclyn’s face as Ed was talking would have been priceless if it hadn’t been so sad. Everybody felt terrible for her in that moment.
The twist I threw into this week’s voting really shook up the house, and in the end it completely changed this game. For two seasons now, Michael Stagliano has help dictate what has gone on at Bachelor Pad. His game plan has always been to be the quiet assassin, letting others do his dirty work. This plan has worked extremely well, but this week, because of the twist, he was forced out of that comfort zone. Stag had to force a situation and put a plan in action to save himself, and he got caught. The funny thing is, it was really a bit of a joke that brought him down. Chris, in passing, jokingly said, “Hey, I should take Erica in the voting booth with me so she can see what I’m really doing?” Well that joke turned out to be the stroke of genius that turned this game upside down.
Once Erica saw Chris vote for Lindzi, she clearly knew Michael was the one behind her departure. To Erica’s credit, I really appreciated what she did on her way out: She took down the king. I don’t know if the speech she gave was completely necessary, but I’m guessing that was just her emotions taking over in a tense situation. But I do respect that Erica did what nobody would do last season, and that’s take down the strongest player and alliance. There was a little confusion after the elimination because Rachel was really upset Michael was going home. Rachel was considering leaving with Michael and that would have really changed everything. If Rachel had left, then Erica would’ve gotten to stay and that would have made that alliance unbeatable. In the end, cooler heads prevailed and Michael talked Rachel into staying.
So, with this huge shakeup, the game is truly on. Now more than ever each challenge will truly define the destiny of everybody in the house. I leave you this week with a line from a great country and western song that seems to sum up Bachelor Pad this season: “Lovin’ you baby don’t take that long”. Have a great week and you can always find me via twitter and instagram @chrisbharrison. And don’t forget to read Bachelor Pad blogs from the cast at www.thebachelor.tv.
More Bachelor Pad from EW: