This week’s show aired on Memorial Day. I would be remiss if I didn’t give a special mention to those service men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. I know this day is about remembrance but I’d also like to salute all those who are currently serving this great nation. I hear from many soldiers who are proud members of Bachelor Nation. I love that this show can entertain and give you even a moment of rest from the great service you provide our country. It’s not nearly enough but, thank you.
Watching Eric’s one-on-one date, I think you can clearly see now why we made the decision to include his moments this season. He made a big impression on Andi the first night, but she also decided to give him the first date, and what a date it was. The date took them from the beaches of Southern California to the snow at Big Bear Mountain. It was a perfect date for an adventurous man like Eric, and he was clearly in his element. It’s fun to see the excitement on Andi’s face and how impressed she is with Eric’s life and spirit. Their conversations were deep and meaningful, yet easy. Eric easily got the first rose on the first one-on-one date and quickly became a front-runner in Andi’s mind and heart.
The good news about the first group date is it was part of Bachelor Gives Back, which raises money for a variety of charities. Now for the bad news: To raise that money I had to endure a bunch of dudes stripping in a room full of very excited women. On a serious note, I want to thank all those that spent their hard-earned money to buy a ticket, and then those that donated at the event with tips or just filling the hat we passed around. There was also a small group of fans that gave extra to our charity event to attend a special reception and meet-and-greet after the show. I really enjoyed meeting and taking pictures with all of you. I love Bachelor Nation but at times like this I especially love how big your heart and soul is.
I have to give it to the guys. This was a brutal date that pushed them way out of their comfort zone. It was great to have Sharleen and Kelly as part of the date. It was funny to listen to them talk about the guys as they were stripping. I also really enjoyed Dylan taking time out of his group dance to give me a private lap dance. There are some memories on this show that stick with me forever, and unfortunately, and that will be one of them. As I told Andi, there’s no limit to the things I’ll endure to help her find love.
As much fun as the day was the, nighttime was really a mess. I’d like to thank my friends the Leight family for having us up to their Malibu Rocky Oaks home again. You might have recognized this house: It’s the location we used during Desiree’s season to shoot the rap video “Right Reasons” with Soulja Boy. This was all set up to be a nice evening, that is until Craig decided he was going to do his best “Champ” impersonation from the movie Anchorman. The only difference is, he chose to do the impersonation while he was three sheets to the wind. Craig seemed so enamored with Josh I kept waiting for him to proclaim he was a mess without him and how he misses his musk and that they should get a place together. Craig was a complete disaster and the evening was pretty much ruined. Marcus made the best of a bad situation and for that, he picked up the rose. Craig was left to pick up his dignity — and later, a guitar.
Chris got the next one-on-one date that took the couple to Santa Anita racetrack. Having spent more than a few days working at this track, I can tell you it really is a beautiful place to spend a day. I loved the conversation Chris and Andi had with the older couple. It was a sweet and charming moment. The band that played for them that night after dinner was This Wild Life. (By the look of the beard the lead singer had, I assume he must also be a producer on our show.) Chris and Andi shared a great moment during their dance and it led to their first kiss. There is a spark between them that is easy and undeniable.
The cocktail party was a pretty interesting night. These guys have quickly deduced that Andi is a catch and they are ready to compete and do what it takes to get her attention. Craig proved the best way to apologize for being in a complete drunken stupor on your date is to sing at not-so-good country song that’s masked as an apology. The only problem with this is that it actually isn’t a good idea at all, and Craig was sent home. I give Craig a hard time but I actually respect that fact that he was the first to realize he made a mistake. He felt horrible about how he acted and was horrified until he had a chance to apologize to everybody. We all make mistakes and it’s nice to see people own up to them.
Next week we have a special two-night Bachelorette event you won’t want to miss. Sunday night includes one of Andi’s favorite dates this entire season, the concert and performance with Boyz II Men. Thousands of fans showed up to see them. Monday night, it’s an all-new episode as we head out on the road with our first stop in Connecticut. It’s a dramatic, emotional, and unforgettable two-night event.
More Bachelorette from EW: