It’s home town dates week on The Bachelor! In this weeks episode Sean will be visiting with the families of the four remaining women (Desiree, AshLee, Catherine, and Lindsay). These dates can be a make or break for the women, and lets the audience know who may be hating their family for the rest of their lives. First up for the home town dates is AshLee.
AshLee’s date starts out with some one on one time for her and Sean. They spend their
time frolicking in a meadow with AshLee’s little dog, and Sean gets the opportunity to learn some more about the parents he’s about to meet. When they get to the house AshLee’s parents want to know what they’ve been up to since the show started. AshLee tells them about the polar bear plunge, and then inexplicably decides to tell her parents that she and Sean had a romantic time rolling around in the sand in St. Croix. I Probably wouldn’t have picked this first meeting as the time to fill my parents in on my romantic times, but that’s just me. ( Of course I probably would have gone with never as the time I’d give my parents this info, but that’s just me again). Later on, after spending one on one time with both of AshLee’s parents the group comes back together, and AshLee’s father tells the story of the first time he met her. He says he felt an instant connection when the woman from the foster care agency introduced them, and he fell in love with AshLee right away. Her father goes on to say the man who wants to spend the rest of his life with AshLee will have to feel that same kind of love for her. Luckily for Sean he probably will only be spending a year tops with AshLee, so he doesn’t have to worry too much if his feelings for her aren’t that strong. Overall the time with AshLee’s family is pretty dull. (It would have been much more exciting if her birth parents had made a surprise appearance, disappointed The Bachelor couldn’t make that happen). One take away from this home town visit: AshLee seems to have fallen the hardest of any of the women (lots of talk of love coming out of her). If she isn’t the “winner” at the end AshLee could have a meltdown of epic proportions, or in reality television words, ratings gold.
Next up for the home town dates is Catherine who will be taking Sean to meet her family in Seattle. Before meeting the fam Sean and Catherine spend some time walking around the city doing famous Seattle-y stuff like catching fish at Pike Place Market. Catherine (and later Desiree) teaches us a very important lesson about the home town visit: include a minimal number of family members and ideally no siblings. Catherine’s sisters ask her if she would say yes if Sean proposed at the end, and I think her answer sums up why this show never results in marriage. Catherine responds by saying, “if he proposed at the end I would say yea I wanna try this out.” This quote from Catherine reeks of confidence in her feelings for Sean. Overall, Catherine’s family certainly doesn’t do her any favors. Her sister’s express concerns to Sean about how prepared Catherine is to settle down, and her mother expresses skepticism in the process and doesn’t give her blessing should Catherine be the last woman standing. Sean leaves Seattle saying he isn’t sure how to move forward with Catherine from this point on.
Next up is Lindsay who will be taking Sean to her current home town of Fort Leon Wood Missouri. Before going to meet the family Sean and Lindsay stroll around the town, eat some cupcakes, and get in a workout to get “army ready” to meet Lindsay’s father a two star general in the United States army. This is another fairly dull family visit. The producer’s attempt to create tension by previewing Lindsay’s father saying he doesn’t know if he can give his blessing, but after giving a nice paratrooper analogy he says Sean has his blessing as long as Lindsay says yes. My favorite family member from this visit is Lindsay’s younger brother, he is the exception to the sibling rule as he says almost nothing and looks shell-shocked the entire time he’s on camera. Overall the visit goes well for Lindsay and Sean and she tells him she is falling in love with him before he leaves for the last home town date.
Last up, the only home town date that didn’t make me feel like taking a nap, it’s time for Sean to travel to Los Angeles to meet Desiree’s family. Before Desiree’s family can meet up with them for dinner Desiree has a little surprise for Sean. On their first one on one date Sean pulled a prank on Desiree making her think she had broken an expensive piece of artwork, and she decides to pay him back by having an actor show up pretending to be an ex-boyfriend. I think they may have needed a little more rehearsal time (or a better actor) for this skit however, because it’s fairly obvious from the dialogue this is a set up from the beginning. This prank does give Sean and Desiree a chance to laugh, which is nice because they won’t be doing anymore of that once her brother arrives. Desiree and Sean both have good talks with her parents, (who may be the cutest, nerdiest parents I’ve ever seen) and then it’s time to see how her brother is feeling about things. Desiree say’s she knows he is skeptical, and he proves her right by saying the whole thing seems “stupid” almost. Desiree asks her brother if he would be happy for her if she is the one Sean selects at the end, and he responds by saying: “if it were to happen, I’d be saying to myself there’s no way this could work out.” Leaving Desiree with that vote of confidence, it’s time for some one on one time between Sean and Desiree’s brother. Desiree’s brother first tells Sean he doesn’t think he has any strong feelings for Desiree, and then calls him a “playboy” who is just having fun with the circumstances. Sean says that’s not what he’s doing but states he doesn’t think Nate (the brother) is buying what he’s saying. Nate responds by laughing and saying “not at all, not at all.” The guys end their talk with Nate saying “it is what it is, right?” then they head back inside to settle in for an awkward ending to dinner. When they get back inside there is clearly a lot of tension which Desiree’s father attempts to diffuse by talking about the weather stating: “where we’re at you’ve got the four distinct seasons” (I seriously love these parents, they should have their own show). After Sean leaves Desiree goes back inside for some more happy family time. Nate asserts that Sean is not “the one” while the rest of the family argues that Nate is being unfair in his judgement. (Apparently tent living really hardened Nate more than the rest of their family). As Sean pulls away he expresses doubts about being part of a family where he doesn’t get along with one of the members. Positive notes for Desiree following this home town date: 1. She has a ridiculously nice house for a 26-year-old 2. She has the cutest parents ever 3. This ending feels like a set up for her to be the next Bachelorette (not sure that’s really positive but we’ll see).
Now that we’ve completed four underwhelming home town dates its rose ceremony time. Heading into the rose ceremony Sean says he sees a future with Lindsay and AshLee, but is uncertain about what to do with Desiree and Catherine. Just before handing out the first rose, Desiree asks to speak to Sean privately. Desiree apologizes again for her brother’s behavior and for how upset he made Sean. Sean’s reaction to a further apology from Desiree doesn’t seem especially heart-felt and makes it seem like she’s in the most trouble heading into the rose ceremony. This turns out to be true. After making Catherine and Desiree sweat it out while stepping away to (create reality tv drama) think over who to give the final rose to, Sean ultimately selects Catherine, leaving Desiree as the one leaving this week. As he walks her out, Sean tells Desiree he thinks he may wake up tomorrow morning and realize he made a huge mistake. This leads Desiree to tell him she is certain he is making a mistake, and to some begging for Sean to not let her go. Despite her pleas, Sean does let Desiree go, and we are left with Catherine, Lindsay and AshLee as the women who will get the “romantic” overnight dates on next weeks episode. Tonight “The Bachelor tells All” special will air on ABC. The preview features a lot of Tierra talk and helped me remember how much I missed her sparkle this week. I’ll probably write a short post tomorrow covering any exciting new tidbits we get from Sean, and then will be back next Tuesday to go over who made best use of the “fantasy suite.”
(On a final note, for anyone feeling especially sad for Desiree she put this post on Tweeter shortly before I published this recap).