By Michael Slezak
April 10, 2007 at 12:00 PM EDT
  • TV Show

After a hilarious season premiere chock full o’ tantrums, spontaneous singing, and drunken pratfalls, episode 2 of The Bachelor: Officer and a Gentleman was bound to be a little bit of a letdown — from a comedy standpoint, anyway. Yet what the 90 minutes lacked in laughs, it made up for with ripped abs, heaving breasts, and maddening contradictions.

Andy got psyched for first group date — not a tough task, considering the 7-1 woman-to-man ratio — by declaring “Operation: Soulmate is about to begin!” And what better way to start a meaningful search for love than by packing the babes onto a “party bus,” driving down to the Sunset Strip, and watching them ride a mechanical bull that’s programmed to stop mid-buck, vibrate wildly, and cause violent cleavage convulsions? Next stop, a rooftop bar, where Andy presented his dates with racks of ballgowns, then declared, “I can’t wait to see you all in your beautiful dresses. I’m so glad you like them,” as if he was reading off a cue card. Clearly the officer/gentleman’s mind was drifting toward the swimsuit competition, and a short while later, after toasting to “a very classy evening,” our hero suggested it was time to slip into something more comfortable, revealed his enviably chiseled torso, and let the gals go in for a group grope. A very classy evening indeed!

But not to worry, ladies of Group Date No. 2, ABC wasn’tabout to rob you of the opportunity to shake what your mamas gave you —so let’s start the morning by donning retro gym shorts, downing somemimosas, and participating in a mini triathlon (which will consist of alap-swim, stationary bike, and slo-mo jiggling as you sprint around therooftop pool). Bounce, Amber, bounce! You’re the winner! You get tosnuggle on the beach with Andy and drive your competitors into adelicious rage. And sorry, Susan and Erin, but Andy is not the kind ofguy who’s impressed by watching you hold hands, giggle, and declareyour aversion to physical activity. But keep an eye out for those SpiceChannel auditions.

And then there was the one-on-one date withStephanie South Carolina, the “organ donor coordinator” who’s beingedited to look like she enjoys harvesting kidneys and livers before thebenefactors have even passed. My favorite moment involved the toothytroublemaker’s crazed conviction that she’d uncovered Alexis’ secretvirginity, as if she could somehow sniff out her competitor’s lack ofsexual experience like a police dog to a cache of illicit drugs. Thatsaid, I was actually a little bit impressed that Stephanie S.C. got alittle goofy reenacting scenes from Titanic aboard Andy’syacht. I also dug Andy’s “I see a beautiful woman!” shtick, which,combined with his use of words like “ravishing,” “radiant,” and”glorious” (as opposed to the standard Bachelor adjectives like “awesome,” “amazing,” and “great”), makes him the most intellectually advanced Bachelor in, well, ever.

Ofcourse, given that closing-credits scene of Nicole, Susan, and Alexisstruggling with that tricky math equation — There are 15 womenremaining; Andy has already given out one rose; there are 11 roses onthe table; how many women will end up going home without a rose? —let’s not forget gauging intelligence in The Bachelor universe is a strictly relative matter.

What did you think of this season’s second episode? And is the show keeping its spot on your DVR for the rest of the season?

Chris Harrison hosts the veteran reality romance series. Will you accept this rose?
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