Episode 8, Funky Smells and an Ex-Con

Hometowns. No prelude. No bicep curls. No nothing. Barely a bite into my shrimp étouffée, we jump right in. Come on, ABC. Before the stuff goes down, I need time to digest a bite or two...maybe even as Sean climbs a rocky cliff, or jogs on the beach, or engages in some military presses.

AshLee opens the show with a long walk and a picnic with her puppy. Sitting in wait for Sean, pooch in tow, she reflects upon the things that have made her fall so deeply IN-TO love with the fair-haired Texan. Sean arrives to join her amongst the weeds, and they compare stories of their religious backgrounds. They exchange other pleasantries. Our old pal Casey adjusts the teleprompter so that someone, anyone, will promise to guard and protect a heart.

They make it to the house, where her parents are waiting. Yo, Pastor Dad...Sonny Bono called. He wants his 'stash back. For goodness sakes, it doesn't even match the hair plugs. Conversation began weird, then got weirder. Only capital L would pull out the tears reliving a Polar Bear Plunge. Omgosh, please don't cry at every single turn in this journey! You jumped into a freezing lake...same as everyone else. Well, everyone except no-kisser. Mom feverishly scratches her brillo-top in frustration as capital L shares the story of her and Sean's romp on the beach. Sonny Bono cringes as he pictures his little girl running her hands through Sean's eyebrows hair.

Mom: What are your intentions? Are you going to break her heart?
Dad: Do you love her?
Sean: Did you get the memo that I'm dating three other women?
Dad: It sure is a good thing you live in Dallas, 'cuz you ain't gonna wanna run into my preachin' arse if you break my baby's heart.

Words of the day: Protect and abandon. Use them in a sentence.

The date finally comes to a close, and my sister and I agreed that we weren't feeling the connection between them. I just feel a dramatic tone that creeps me out. Everything has a touch of theatrical cheese to go along with her pixie dust. Gross.

Time to explore Seattle with Catherine. After she mounts a wild hog (whaaa?), they make their way to a fish market. Mmmmm, smells great I'm sure. As I ask myself how the heck she knows these random fish people, everyone engages in an enthralling game of catch the slimy stinking seafood. Yessss! That's my favorite party game. The scales. The slime. The stinch. This whole thing opens the door to so many extremely inappropriate jokes which my amused husband would love to see me include. No such luck, handsome.

We go from fish toss to a-b-c gum wall. This date gets more delightful every second. And by delightful, I mean disgusting. What's next, a farting contest?

Catherine warns him about her family who may or may no be accepting. Graham cracker is going to extend her hand to Sean. Don't kiss it Sean. Don't dunk it in milk or melt chocolate and marshmallows on it. Place it on your forehead. That's what real men do.

Sean tells her what a cute house she has. That's code for, where is my eyebrow grooming kit going to fit? Grammy cracker might have a wee bit of a crush on Catherine's man. Sean digs for his long lost rape whistle as Grammy cracker cops herself a feel. Meanwhile, the sisters grill Cat about her new relationship. They then enlighten Sean about her extreme mood swings. Red flag much? Where is her Dad again? See what I did there?

Overall, this day pretty much bombed. 

On to General Daddy. They take a walk around Fort Leonardwood before visiting Sugar On Top cupcakery. Ahhh, a woman after my own heart. Although, I bet it doesn't compare to Cupcakes on Kavanaugh. Either way, Sean needs a cupcake shoved in his face before he changes into his get-army-ready clothes. Pushups, sit ups, slaps on the butt, all to prepare him to meet General Daddy. Although I'm not sure the General requires a kiss with every sit up from his troops.

Dad may spend his time containing his wife's energy. Mom may have sipped on some sauce before they arrived. Although, I'd really like her to finish her running-man impression.

Sean sings Lindsey's praises to the two-star General. He indirectly offers Sean his approval and blessing. Sean survives the most intimidating Dad in hometown history, then finally unclenches so the proverbial toothpick will fall out. But give him props, he only peed his pants a little. Sean walks her out, looks over his shoulder for the General, hides behind the dark SUV and delivers the only semi-romantic kiss of the night.

Next, Des takes him for a hike in the hills of Los Angeles, and she receives the only tonsil hockey session on hometown week. She takes him back to her quaint townhouse in a remote part of LA...annndddd let the drama begin. What an interesting start to the night. A knock on the door. Family's here. Oh, but wait. It's not family at all. It's someone who claims to still love her and wants Sean out of the picture. Who is the mystery guy? Does he want Des for himself? Is he going to punch Sean? Is this the great hoax I foretold of last week? Why, yes. Yes it is. Gotcha, Sean. Payback for the art exhibit prank.

Then the family arrives for real. Bless their hearts. I'm pretty sure her parents are genuinely sweet people. We already know they've led an unfortunate life. Seems they've come out on  the other side with a pleasant disposition. The brother, on the other hand. An entirely different story. Would jerkwad do him justice? Probably not but I'm trying to be a lady here, sooo...

Casual conversation seems to go well. Des talks about her adventures in goat milking and nose spurting. Des' Mom is excited to see her baby with a sweet, good-looking guy who makes her baby happy. Des get the third degree from her brother. At first, as he is telling her not to fall for anyone in the "stupid" process who is clearly NOT her best friend, he smiles and I get skeptical all over that maybe this is leading up to the mother of all pranks. And, in all fairness, he has a fairly valid point that this isn't going to work out. If history repeats itself, then NO, it will not work out. That said, be nice, dude. Just be nice.
Just as the Filets and ice water were served, Nate decides to give Sean the ol' "mind if I holla at'chu real fast?" request. Our unsuspecting bachelor obliges as he calls him buddy and asks him to take it easy on him. Ahhh the irony.

Nate: So far, all I see is that she's into you, but you don't reciprocate.
Sean: I'm sorry I gave you that impression, but...
Nate: I don't believe there's any reciprocation.
Sean: Ummm, well I disagree.
Nate: No man, the reciprocation isn't there. Are you really that into her?
Sean: Yeah. I am. I care about your sister.
Nate: So you really believe that reciprocation is there? Because I don't see the reciprocation.
Sean: Dude. I'm crazy about your sister.
Nate: You're crazy about a lot of girls aren't you?
Sean: And you're crazy about the word reciprocation.
Nate: Yeah, well, I have it tattooed on my lower back.
Sean: What's happening here?
Nate: I don't know, playa, you tell me. Who you gonna choose?
Sean: At this point, I don't know. (Code for: The show won't let me reveal it, but you're killing your sister's chances of reciprocation)
Nate: I think you jus a playboy. You jus havin fun.
Sean: [clinches fist] Nah, that's not me, man. I'm not that way.... but I don't think you're buying it.
Nate: Hair no. Not at all. But it is what it is. Says so on my neck.
Sean: I think we should go back inside.
Nate: Aight, playa. Play on.

They come back in to their cold steaks, water with now melted ice, and a very pensive Des. Everyone knows things went awry outside just now. But what's a family to do besides talk about the distinct four seasons. Nate, most likely fresh out of prison and rehab (which would explain the water), continues his aggressive behavior at the dinner table. Maybe his opinion of this process isn't so far removed from the opinions of millions of other people. However, - and that's a BIG however - he is the rudest, most thuggish, most irritatingly smug piece of white trash that has ever been on this show. 

That couldn't have ended soon enough. Like a gift from the Bachelor gods, one hour and 36 minutes in, we are granted a reprieve from the drama. Thank you, ABC.

Chris grills Sean about his feelings. Chris is honest about his feelings of ambiguity and his lack of clarity on the upcoming distribution of the coveted roses. But he chooses to follow his heart, despite Des' last minute attempt to erase his memory of the evil brother.

Roses go to:

AshLee. He enjoyed her capital L even in Houston.

Lindsay. He's not afraid of a two-star General and a flirtatious Mom. Our girl in the wedding dress moves on. Who knew!

Catherine. Poor girl. She gets a rose because her family is the lesser of two evils. The recipient by default. Next to go home.

And just like that, Katie Holmes is out the door. My pick all along ended up with the worst hometown in Bachelor history. Too much baggage, Des. It's been fun. For the record, he can say what he wants in front of the cameras to preserve the integrity of the relationship he has with whoever he chose. BUT, I'll always be confident that she would've won if not for that jacked up hometown.

From here, they move on to spend their final days in Thailand. Wouldn't be my pick of romantic destinations. But once again, the producers didn't ask for my opinion. What can I say? They're missing out. But props to them for the monkey on the beach. Nice.


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