It’s baa-aaack! Yes, the show that makes you want to spray your TV with Lysol and rinse your eyes out with Purell has returned, skeezier and creepier than ever. You guessed it – Bachelor Pad!
For those of you who haven’t yet been blessed with seeing this show, let me tell you what it’s about – because, believe me, you likely won’t want to watch it but you are going to want to read my weekly recaps.
In the words of host Chris Harrison, Bachelor Pad is a show for “the men and women who did not find lasting love on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette.” Well, Harrison, we’ve been over this – that’s everyone. Actually, Bachelor Pad is where Bachelor(ette) rejects go to catch a few more STDs. Nine men and women who failed to find fame or fortune from appearing on TV the first (or second) time show up to live in a house together, do dirty things, make fools of themselves, and vaguely compete for $250,000. I say “vaguely” because although one couple did win the money last year, I can’t for the life of me remember how or why they did so. Because, let’s face it, that’s not why we’re here.
The Ex Factor
The Bachelor(ette) franchise is an incestuous little world. After people appear on the show, they seem to make a living out of attending franchise “reunions” (drunken parties thrown only to aid in casting) and only seem to date (sleep around with) each other. So the cast for this season of Bachelor Pad had quite a bit of skanky history behind them. Let’s review.
Did you catch all that? I hope so, because there’s more! And they all have intro packages to remind us who they are!
Justin “Rated R”, the wrestler from Ali’s season who actually had a girlfriend back home. His intro package screamed douche, just in case you’d missed his original season or something.
Jackie was a pretty forgettable cast member from Brad’s season. She called Michelle a spider during The Women Tell All which seemed, you know, apt. Speaking of which…
Michelle Money, who you can’t forget if you saw Brad’s season. She’s a single mom and her dad has stage 4 cancer, so it’s going to be really hard to hate her this season. But I’m sure I’ll find a way.
Gia, who you know from the helpful flow chart. This is her second (second!) time appearing on Bachelor Pad. The only thing sadder than that is the fact that it’s also my second time watching Bachelor Pad. Gia reminded us of her feud with Vienna – “All she cares about is fame and being on TV,” Gia said. Wow, I hope they’re ready to do some cooking in Casa Chlamydia, because I see a pot and a kettle right there!
Oh, here’s the kettle Vienna now! Her intro, naturally, featured her getting a spray tan. Like one does when they’re being filmed. She said she “got what she came for” on The Bachelor. I’m sorry, did she mean a piddly amount of fleeting fame or a psychopath fiancee? And of course, there’s her boyfriend…
Kasey. Yeah, Kasey’s the guy who got a tattoo saying “guard and protect your heart” during Ali’s season. He’s trying to do that for Vienna, but it’s so hard to find her heart under all that crazy. He’s “head over heels in love with Vienna”, the poor schmuck, and is also in the best shape of his life, apparently. Yes, he went and gained 30lbs of muscle so he could…not beat up Jake Pavelka, because that would mean getting kicked off the show. But he’ll fantasize about doing it!
Of course, we’re all meant to sympathize with Jake. Yes, once again Jake is getting the victim’s edit, complete with creepy reenactment shots of him and Vienna leaning over railings and looking dramatic. Who is he sleeping with at ABC to get this edit? “I’m not confident at all,” Jake said. Well, obviously. Bachelor Pad is not exactly a mecca for people with high self-esteem.
Next we met Erica, who thinks she’s a princess. She wears a tiara and bikinis that do not flatter her. She wants to win the money because “It’s time for me to become financially independent of my parents. The problem is, I don’t want to go look for a job or anything like that.” Heavens, no! Not a job!
Graham was up next, and I didn’t watch his season. Was he a jerk? He must have been a jerk. Otherwise why would he get the redeeming edit about how he went and built wells in Cambodia?
Then we met Ella again, who Jake had sent home on a two-on-one date. She’s also a single mom, and has a serious Dexter Morgan quality backstory going on – her mom was murdered. In front of her and her sister. By her step-dad. With a sawed off shotgun.
Finally we met Holly and Mike. They were together a couple years, got engaged and then she “freaked out” and called off the engagement. They tried to stay together but, you know, I can’t really see how that would have been possible. So that’s awkward. Now, into Casa Chlamydia we go!
The contestants started entering the house, one by one – on top of the oldies who got intro packages we had the dudes from last season, Blake, Ames and William, and a few people we couldn’t care less about like that girl Alli. Holly, who was dressed in a tiny purple feather skirt as though she were auditioning for the role of the french feather duster in the porn version of Beauty and the Beast, immediately set her sights on Blake. Blake immediately proved that he’s a great, great guy when he met Erica and dismissed her as “a little thick, not really for me.” I’d love to assume he meant she seemed thick like, stupid, but I know better. What a jerk. Holly liked him because he uses big words, though, like “dysfunctional”. Yeah, that’s some SAT level material right there. Just a guess, but if a good vocabulary is what gets your engine revving, I don’t think Bachelor Pad is the place for you.
As soon as Vienna showed up she started badmouthing Jake to the whole room, and put on her best nervous “OMG what if he comes?” face, as though she didn’t already know she’d only gotten cast because he was also going to be there.
Gia showed up next, already wearing a negligee. Good thinking, Gia! Why waste money or time on a dress? We all know why we’re here!
Jake showed up last, and it was immediately clear that his one mission in life is to be redeemed in the eyes of America. Man oh man, this is a guy who’s desperate to be liked. And the harder he tries, the more I think he’s a psychopath. He worked the crowd like a politician – I swear, if someone there had had a baby he would have kissed it. Instead, he settled for giving Kasey his blessing to date Vienna. How big of him!
The first challenge was the next morning, so the guys and gals had to choose their partners. This was easy for the people who were already couples, but not so easy for the others. A drunken Kirk (remember? the guy who beat mold) ended up with Erica, and although Ames and Jackie were already making out on the outdoor couches (and I thought he was as close to classy as this franchise could get…) they opted to partner with other people – Jackie with Jake and Ames with Michelle.
The challenge required the guys to be lifted up in harnesses above a bed, while the girls clung on for dear life. The prize was two roses and a romantic date. Of course, it came down to Vienna and Kasey vs. Jake and Jackie. Despite one leg turning a frightening shade of purple, Jake managed to use a complex fantasy to pull out the win – every time he felt like he was letting go, he’d imagine that he was hanging above a 10,000ft cliff and that the rescue helicopter was about to arrive and that he only had to go 20 more minutes and that afterwards he and Jackie would…OK, too far. The point is, Kasey let Vienna fall 10,000ft to her death and Jake didn’t. Time for a hissy fit in the hot tub! The couple made up later, though, and Kasey murmured something to Vienna about loving her more than peanut butter cookies. Thanks a lot, Kasey, now you’ve ruined peanut butter cookies for me.
Kasey and Vienna then set to work to try and put together an alliance, but the strategy on this show is so sloppy that it’s a fruitless endeavor to try and follow it. Basically, Justin was playing both sides, and either Alli was too or she’s just really, really dumb. The best part was Kasey’s reasoning for wanting to work with Justin – “He’s very schematic. He likes to scheme things.” Oh, Kasey. You keep talking like that and you’ll never attract a smart girl like Holly!
Meanwhile, Jake and Jackie were enjoying their image rehab romantic date in Hollywood. Before having dinner atop a movie theater, a little girl approached Jake, crying – crying! – over how he’s her idol. Him? Him? Where was this girl’s mother? Why is she even allowed to watch The Bachelor? The girl told Jake her dream was to be on TV, and he (a trained pilot) wisely told her to stay in school. Oh, no, sorry. That was just in my wildest dreams. Jake gave her a big smile and told her her dream was about to come true. Well, there ya go, honey! No need to aspire to anything else, you’ve already appeared on Bachelor Pad!
Over dinner, Jake poured his heart his story out to Jackie, which basically consisted of “Vienna is horrible and sold our breakup story to a magazine while I thought we were still engaged.” Oh, come on. Look, I hate Vienna as much as the next person, but I’m not buying this whole martyr bit from Jake. Since Jackie and Jake had a third rose they could give out, Jackie suggested they give it to Vienna as a peace offering. What? Why? Dumbest idea ever. Then Jackie spent the rest of the night cuddling with Jake while Ames stayed at home brushing up on his Renaissance poetry or something.
Every Rose Has Its…how many times am I allowed to quote that song this season?
The next day Jake and Jackie were still trying to decide who to give the rose to…well, Jake was. Jackie took herself out of the decision making process because, like, it was really hard you guys and it’s just so much easier if boys make all the tough decisions!
Gia, of course, did not take the news that Jake was considering giving the rose to Vienna very well. But give it to Vienna he does, and then Jake goes to speak with Vienna and Kasey in private. Gia cries, and can you blame her? She’s like, one million times hotter than Vienna and now Jake has chosen Vienna over Gia twice! That’s just not right, you guys! Or, you know, something. In the privacy of a room containing only himself, Vienna, the man she loves, and a camera crew, Jake apologized for yelling at her on TV. Man, his acting classes out in LA must have really paid off – it was almost believable! Vienna looks crushed, probably because she now knows she can’t run around telling people she’s afraid of Jake anymore. Quick, a distraction from this disheartening development! Vienna immediately started making out with Kasey, told him she’s going to have his babies, and then worked on making that happen in a creepy “private” room with a Paris Hilton style night vision camera.
Wheelin’ and Dealin’
Was it at this point that I called my mom and said “I can’t believe we’re only halfway through this crap?” I can’t remember. I might have PTSD. What I do know is that we eventually ended up at the most boring part of the show, the actual gameplay.
Basically, the men were either voting for Gia or Alli and the women were either voting for Justin and Kasey – in case you’re smart enough to not have watching, men vote for women and vice versa. To save herself, Gia took Kasey aside and tried to make a pact – she wouldn’t vote for him if he wouldn’t vote for her. That way, they’d both be safe. Now, this was smart – it did seem like the only way Gia could stick around. You know what wasn’t smart? Both of them keeping their word! You say you’re going to do that and then break the promise, morons! Then, if you’re lucky, you stay and the other person goes! This is like, basic stuff!
In the end, neither Gia or Kasey went back on their word. How long do you think it’ll take for Vienna to realize that it was her boyfriend who kept her female nemesis safe? How long do you think it’ll take before people realize that Alli’s not in Casa Chlamydia anymore? And did you kinda dig Justin’s exit as much as I did? I mean, yeah, the guy was a jerk – but that’s sort of what you need on Bachelor Pad, and he probably would have been entertaining. I would have much preferred to see Vienna’s face when her heart guarder and protector was sent packing. Thanks a lot, Gia.
Before I sign off, a couple other things to note about that rose ceremony:
- I guess the producers realized that Melissa Rycroft was really unnecessary. I hope they put her salary towards more bleach for the hot tub.
- What on earth was that sparkly dress Erica had on? Was she wearing Spanx under it? And why didn’t they ever give us a really good look at it?
- Justin saying “Alli’s a drunken moron and basically threw me under the bus.” Stay classy!
- The joke at the end with Jeff the Masked Man was pretty funny. I’ll give them that.