JUAN PABLO WEEK FOUR: "my future husband is waiting for me in Korea and I don't even have a kimono"

How many likes do you think this pic got when this Korean teen uploaded it to Instragram?

JA: For Week 4, I was joined in my apartment by our friend and schoolmate, the inimitable Laura Marks. She hasn’t been watching this season, but her first words upon seeing Juan Pablo: “His eyes are a little too close together.” Well said, Laura. We are also both of the mind that a more exciting trip for the Bachelor crew would have been NORTH Korea. Just saying. Dennis Rodman clearly has access; why shouldn’t a bunch of drunk, emotionally unstable blondes? And whoever it was that said, “Korea?!? I don’t even have a kimono” should probably enter a beauty pageant.

SA: It was Clare and I believe her sentence right before that was, 'my future husband is waiting for me in Korea'. This is my least favorite kind of contestant, the one who thinks they are engaged to said bachelor from the moment they walk out of the limo, the hesitant, unsure ones (looking at you Sharleen) are much more appealing. Also, when they were walking to the hotel screaming, I imagined Sharleen felt like the girl really embarrassed by all the other American students on a study abroad program.

I found this whole K-pop date shrill and annoying. I also have just realized what it must do to people to have to be constantly excited and screamy about everything. And these Korean Spice Girls seem really annoyed having to deal with the Bachelor. Although when I saw they were doing their concert in a mall, I’m a little like, America stopped doing that with Tiffany around 1987.

I loved when Nikki said she was upset she had to go on a group date with five other girls she found quite annoying - it's true that they really did split off the dum-dums for this K-pop date. With the exception of Danielle who I didn't even realize was on this date until almost the end, that's how little screen time she gets. 

Also, dear Kat. Stop trying so hard to be a backup dancer. I get it. You tried. You danced with vigor. You shared some childhood trauma about your alcoholic dad. And apparently, your mom “made lemons out of lemonade.” But don’t you know by now that the Group Date Rose doesn’t go to the person who does the best? It goes to the girl who sucks the hardest at the task and pouts the whole time (looking at you, Nikki). Who was it who said, "if she wants to stay in South Korea and be a back up dancer for 21, she should do that." That was awesome, and if Kat quit to bachelor to stay in SK - that might be the coolest thing ever.

I had my head down writing when someone said “my childhood dream was to be Britney Spears’ backup dancer.” I couldn’t rewind because it just made me sad. It made me sad for a whole lot of reasons. I noted that as well, it was Chelsie. Which makes me less sad bc it's pretty much what I expected of her.

Fia, did you think when Elise used her one-on-one time with Juan Pablo to smear other contestants that she was signing her own walking papers? That’s never a good move. I thought we got two good bachelor lessons on this date. Kat brought out her trauma at the exact moment other girls were accusing her of being "too fun". Good move. But yes, Elise warning JP to be careful - always, always a bad move and it's no surprise we said goodbye to Elise tonight. Can't say I was sad to see her go though, she was just rocking way too many sequins for my taste. Also, he srsly likes Nikki - did you see how he wiped the strand of hair out of her face, then brought up Camila? He seems sold on this one which is why I was surprised in the next scene when he told us at this point Sharleen is still his favorite.

I have mixed emotions about this Sharleen date. On one hand, she’s definitely being honest and being her weird cold fish self. And I’m glad JP appreciated her honesty about kids. I feel like he’s still so taken with her that her complete lack of any maternal instinct isn’t a problem… yet. But I doubt that this can last. I know Juan Pablo thinks he and Sharleen have “a lot in common” (both of them lived in foreign countries???) but I’m just not seeing it. Fia?

I say it every week - I really like Sharleen. I like that I feel like we get to see who she actually is, and it's the kind of person I recognize from real life. Did you hear her say, "I don't want to get ahead of myself but I feel like I might get the rose tonight." Sharleen, silly goose, of course you are getting the rose tonight - it's a one-on-one and JP is obsessed with you. Do you not know what getting ahead of yourself on this show means? Clare is already referring to this man as her fiance!

However, as much as I like Sharleen, and maybe want to invite her to my wedding, I do not know about the whole JP thing for her. Like, I really don't see her giving up her career as an opera singer and moving to Miami to become Camila's stepmom. If the franchise wants to continue on their success streak a producer might need to step in and force Sharleen to pull a Brooks in the penultimate episode.

That fish pedicure? Cannot unsee. I have wanted a fish pedicure for so long!! Also props to JP for actually letting all of the ladies see some of the city. Man would it suck to go all the way to Seoul and then have to stay in the hotel room (which has happened before on travel dates).

Also, I’m sorry, but Clare’s whole bit with the octopus was a perfectly orchestrated ploy for attention. If she really hated octopus, why would she bring it up out of absolutely nowhere? She did it so that the focus could be on her and so that she could look like she was facing a fear. And JP fell for it hook, line, and sinker. (Although when Andi and Kelly reenacted the octopus moment later, they basically won the episode.)

Kelly the dog lover has really grown on me. Don't get me wrong I don't see her with JP at all but they really need to keep her around for comic relief. Re: the octopus when she said Clare has definitely swallowed bigger things? That could have been a line from Clueless. I also love how she lies so effortlessly ie when Clare walked in on Nikki talking trash about her and without missing a beat Kelly tells her they'd been talking about Lauren's awkward date.

But the most amazing thing about this group date was JP’s improvised “rule” that he’s not going to kiss any more women because he didn’t want his daughter to be watching him kiss multiple women (again with his idea that the children of America are watching The Bachelor). This sudden moratorium on kissing was only in place while he was around women he wasn’t really into, and Renee and Lauren HAD TO KNOW the real truth -- that he just wasn’t that into them. Because the second he got in front of Clare, the rule went out the window. Also, it’s the most ridiculous “rule” I’ve ever heard. There can be no Bachelor or Bachelorette without the constant risk of a cold sore outbreak. You have to kiss. You can’t not kiss. That’s, like, in the Constitution.

Josh, are kindergarten classes around the country hosting bachelor viewing parties and we are the last to know? 

The Rose Ceremony yielded few surprises for me, except for Danielle still being around. I constantly forget she’s there. Elise? Bye. And Lauren… poor Lauren. When she cried to the other girls about Juan Pablo’s flat-out refusal to kiss her, they comforted her by saying, “Don’t negate a relationship just because you start off as friends.” Um… yeah, I guess that’s true… if you were here longer than two weeks and he wasn’t slobbing down every other girl in the house. No kiss = flying from Korea to LA in coach.

Next week: Clare and Juan Pablo totally have sex, don’t they? It’s clear that he can’t control himself around her.

Ya, I think we found out the answer to which lady pulls the Courtney in the ocean. 


WEEK THREE and Juan Pablo's publicity scandal

Things heat up between Juan Pablo and Andi in the snack bar kitchen.

JA: Okay, so before we cover this week’s episode, we have to address the controversy that’s taken over El Bachelor. For those of you who don’t know, here’s a rundown, thanks to Sean Daly of The TV Page:

The former Venezuelan soccer star said Friday night that he would be 100 percent opposed to having a cycle of the reality dating show feature an openly gay or bisexual bachelor. “I don’t think it is a good example for kids to watch that on TV,” he told me while promoting the show at a network party in Pasadena, Calif.

“Obviously people have their husband and wife and kids and that is how we are brought up.  Now there is fathers having kids and all that, and it is hard for me to understand that too in the sense of a household having peoples… Two parents sleeping in the same bed and the kid going into bed… It is confusing in a sense.  But I respect them because they want to have kids.  They want to be parents.  So it is a scale… Where do you put it on the scale?  Where is the thin line to cross or not?  You have to respect everybody’s desires and way of living.  But it would be too hard for TV.”

Juan Pablo’s awkward — and somewhat unexpected — comments continued as he then accused gay people of being “more pervert in a sense.” The single dad — who has been known to ditch out on dates to spend time with 4 year-old daughter Camila — was careful to note that he has many gay friends and co-workers. But he still believes the show would be “too hard to watch” with a non-straight leading man or lady.

Juan Pablo later took to Facebook to apologize for his comments, saying, "What I meant to say was that gay people are more affectionate and intense and for a segment of the TV audience this would be too racy to accept."

I’m always a person who tries to give people the benefit of the doubt, or at least the benefit of having English as a second language. He might legitimately not understand how intense the word “pervert” is. And to be honest, I have no earthly clue what some of those comments even mean. “The kid going into bed”... huh?!? And exactly how many kids does Juan Pablo think are watching The Bachelor? In 2014, though, there’s really no excuse for this kind of crazy talk. Because a household with a husband and wife and kids is actually not how we ALL are brought up. For a good portion of my upbringing, I had a single mother. And some of us did actually grow up with gay parents. It’s not a new phenomenon. I’m happy he apologized, but it’s a terrible, incredibly clumsy apology. To call gay people “more affectionate and intense” and “too racy” is basically to call us all sluts. And what could be more intense than the crazy women they pump full of wine on this show? I mean, I could go on and on about this, but I’d love your thoughts, Fia.

SA: J, completely agree with you on all of the above. I actually had not read his apologize which I think is, in a way, more offensive than his original remarks. Both of which are major hate marks against this franchise, and not in the love to hate kind of way either. On a benefit of the doubt note, I think ESL plays a major role in this. Those statements are brimming with grammatical mistakes, most of which make absolutely no sense. So yes, I think JP definitely did not realize just how offensive, his admittedly offensive remarks would come across. My mother told me that in a gender class she teaches a girl from a latin american country (though not Venezuela) referred to a gay person as a pervert and they all had to correct her - so, hopefully, JP did not realize he was essentially equating being gay to being a child molester. That's how we take that word in the US, JP, take note.

None of this excuses behavior that is just flat out dumb and irresponsible. You're a public figure, JP, get it together. I don't attempt to assume other bachelor stars do not share such outdated views - after all, many of these people commonly post bible scripture on Instagram, but to say something like this publicly is a truly egregious.

To close I would like to correct the real reason why we could not have a gay or lesbian bachlor/ette and it has nothing to do with values. It's because the spine of the show would be broken. This show is built around what happens when you trap people in a house and see what happens when they all try and date the same person. Were the bachelor mansion to be full of gay men or lesbians - they could choose for themselves out of 25 potential mates whom they would like to get to know, no one would give a shit about whatever dweeb the bachelor/ette happened to be. It would be more like dating in the real world and the bachlor/ette would have significantly less power over the house. Duh. 

On to this week's ep - 

Watching the teaser for this episode, I couldn’t help but think about how much better The Bachelor is than The Bachelorette. Women are just better at this. Women guzzle wine and make great television. But Chris Harrison, what was that two-tone monstrosity of a shirt you were wearing? It’s like someone dipped you in bleach. Also, how have a dozen women gone home already? In just two episodes?

It's because the women overanalyze everything that happens, even when what's happening is very little whereas the men just go to the gym and spot one another.

And the first date card goes to Cassandra. I agree with you, Fia, that a two-year-old is really young to be left with his grandma for days and days on end. I’m gonna need her to stop saying she hasn’t been on a first date “since she was 18.” A) You’re 21. It’s not like you’re 30. B) There’s a pretty compelling reason you haven’t been doing a ton of dating. That reason is two years old and is staying in a hotel room in Santa Monica while you share a man with two dozen other women.

This date feels like statutory rape. Cassandra is SO YOUNG which we know because she keeps telling us her last first date was at 18 - so, your senior year of high school, Cassandra? PS - I watched with Tess and Liana and Tess kept saying she couldn't tell if Cassandra was just shy or dumb. Unfortunately, I think it's the later.

I’m all about this date. A nice adventure in a car version of that Duck Boat thing that all the midtown tourists like to ride. Making out in the marina. Making dinner with JP in his fabulous rental house. This is a pile of win in my book. Ooh, Fia: what do you wanna bet that Cassandra’s baby daddy is an NBA player? Did that cross your mind as you looked at those baby pictures? Also, did Juan Pablo seriously just ask if a two-year-old goes to school?

Josh, stop being racist. You only think Cassandra's baby daddy is an NBA player because that baby is obviously half black. And yes, I thought the exact same thing. Maybe that's why she's a former NBA dancer - relations between dancers and players are strictly forbidden you know.

And now here comes the most unimaginative and inevitable group date of all time. I’m surprised it took them THIS long to do a soccer group date. I love Sharleen saying how happy she was because it was her first time out of the house. At first I thought Sharleen was purposely getting herself injured during the game so that she could get pity (and the rose) after the game. But then I realized she was just totally sucky at soccer. Oh, yeah, and at kissing. WHAT WAS THAT? I’ve never seen a worse kiss. Ever. I’m not even sure I can talk about it. It was an abject failure on just about every possible level.

People keep hating on Sharleen but I LOVE her. I love how she always says exactly what I would say if I were on the bachelor, ie "I'm so happy I get to leave the house" and "It's hard to act normally with all these cameras everywhere." Some may say this makes her awkward, I think it makes her awesome. But yes, agreed, that kiss was...weird.

I thought the group date rose was definitely going to Andi - that kitchen make-out session was muy caliente. But then Nikki snagged it, after having done nothing to set her apart to those watching at home, proving she's one to watch. Early group date roses (when not given out of pity, ie last week) are very telling. 

Elise got totally snubbed this week. I feel like they’re making her the first villain of the season. The way she went after Chelsie was so weird. I loved it when she got called out on it, though. “Chelsie’s just, like, a girl, you know? She’s so young.” “I think she’s 25. How old are you?” “I’m 27.” Right. A world of difference. That was awesome.

This Chelsie date was yet another completely unimaginative heights-related date. I’m terrified of heights, but that segment went on for so long that I was ready to shove Chelsie off that bridge myself. And yet another private concert afterward. I had to Google this singer, Billy Currington, and apparently he’s a country artist who’s been around for a while. He’s also been arrested for elder abuse:

I was astounded that Chelsie knew all the words to that song. Also, I wish for once someone had actually not jumped during the obligatory fear of heights one-on-one and then we got to see the awkward, "you didn't jump" rest of the date. Would JP have given her the rose anyway to not look like a dick then gotten rid of her next week? I have no idea! I want to know! Thought it was gonna be you to break the mold Chelsie, but you disappointed me.

Okay, what is Clare’s problem? She needs to seriously manage her expectations. No one’s going to be texting you, Clare. What show do you think you signed up for? Can’t wait til next week when she goes to Stage 4 Clinger territory. Hope Juan Pablo doesn’t have a bunny at home, because if so, it’s headed straight for the stove.

Renee has got to stop being the hero every time someone has a mental break or else she's going to be hospitalized for exhaustion before the season ends. That, or ABC should put her on the pay roll.

Another sad Rose Ceremony, this time for Christy and Free Spirit. I had honestly forgotten Christy existed, but I’ll never forget her Forever 21 outfit and jewelry from Claire’s. And unfortunately for Lucy Free Spirit, there were no opportunities to get naked this week to show Juan Pablo what he could be missing.

I wasn't expected Lucy to leave this early, but now that she's gone the question remains...which lady is rubbing body parts with JP in the ocean???? Maybe we'll find out next week. See you all there.


JUAN PABLO WEEK TWO - who let the dogs out?

props to JP for giving the rose to the gal who actually was the best sport - not the girl who got naked...this bitch.

JA: Okay, where do I even begin? I’m tempted to do this like a notes call and start with my overalls before I get into page notes. This episode basically taught me that Juan Pablo is the most perfectest Bachelor in the history of The Bachelor. He makes Ben Flajnik look like an even bigger tool (which I didn’t know was possible). Also. Who could have known that the “DIE JUAN PABLO DIE” meltdown would happen in Week Two? Christmas came early.

SA: Uh, Josh, I had forgotten that turd Ben Flajnik even existed, then you reminded me, then I remembered that he's now dating Kris Jenner. 

This Clare date starts off pretty obnoxiously with all the girls seeing Clare and JP off. And where exactly are they going? Someplace with a lot of fake snow and a hot tub? But Clare won’t let a little sexy hot tub time stop her from fulfilling her contractual obligation to dig out her Personal Trauma for the One-on-One date. I wonder if she has a copy of the DVD her dad left for her future husband, just in case she makes it to the finale. Also, bonus points to Clare for relating the frigid winter theme of the date to her emotional state. #metaphor Also, mega bonus points for getting the first makeout of the season. But I’m afraid we’re gonna have to revoke those bonus points for saying JP tastes like snow. I’m from Chicago. That is not a compliment. Unless you mean he tastes like the fake snow coming down around you. Which is… also not a compliment. I won’t even address the private concert because I have no idea who that was and I don’t feel like Googling. The obligatory private concerts by musicians no one has ever heard of are just part of the bachelor franchise - they are never going away, they will outlive us all. 

I have this bad feeling Clare gets really far (maybe even wins?) and someone is going to have to talk me through it because I am still not feeling her. She busted out her trauma while giving JP a back massage and she is constantly referencing her lack of relationships. I know the 'meet the ladies' special is not the last we've seen of that DVD from her deceased father and I am just praying she does not pull it out at hometowns, or worse, have it in her bag at the mansion. Also the 'you taste like snow' line was just too embarrassing to even talk about. Especially because this is fake snow. I guess "you taste like fake snow" just didn't sound as good in her head.

I love how Clare gets taken to some random backlot in Santa Clarita and Kat gets to fly on a private jet to Salt Lake City. I especially love, though, how Kat thought there was a chance they were flying all the way to New York. That’s right, Kat. Dream big.

How could Kat not have gotten that rose? Could you imagine having to run a 5K in a radioactive outfit and then dance at a rave and THEN not get a rose? Okay, I take back my earlier jab at the backlot in Santa Clarita. I would rather make out in a jacuzzi than run three miles.

Between us, I am not sure that Kat and JP actually ran the whole 5K, there weren't a lot of shots of them actually running - more of them starting to run and then dancing at the finish line. That said, I thought this date seemed pretty fun, if a little friend zone. Side note: Did you notice that the banner of this race said it was the Salt Lake Thanksgiving Electric Run -- does that mean that this show films over holidays and none of these girls got to spend the holiday with their families? Would love for a bach insider to clear this up - thanks!

I love this group date. Mainly because I love all these adorable shelter dogs. Former NBA Dancer is in her element at this photo shoot. Wait. Wait. Hold. The phone. Is it just me, or is Kelly kiiiiiiindof in blackface? Well, I guess it’s to make her look like a dog. I’m still a little uncomfortable. But hey. Whatever gets you the rose, I guess?

I also do not blame Elise or Andi for being less than enthused about wearing an index card as an entire outfit. But I guess that’s what you get, Andi, for leaving your promising legal career to be on The Bachelor. Elise was like, “Screw this. I’m happy to be a fire hydrant. Hey, Naked Girl? Wanna be naked some more?” And Lucy was like, “Obvi. I like being naked so much that I DO IT ON THE STREET.” (How was that not super illegal?)

Awww, look at JP, making Andi feel better about being naked by letting her (and America) know that he too will be dropping trou. Now, magically, she feels better about it. (Sweet Mother of Manchego, who WOULDN’T feel better?) Lucy, however, needed no pep talk. Her Ladytown was on full display in every photograph.

At first I thought the 1st grade teacher played this one better by opting out and going for tradesys with Lucy but now I know that no, Andi is definitely the winner here. She used her lawyer skills and played it right - be uncomfortable, get JP to comfort you and then agree to do it - he now thinks she's moral and brave, the producers gave her a big dog to cover herself, JP is cuddling up to her and Lucy is...still just naked. She's definitely the odd man out in this ménage à dog adoption commercial.

And now the moment we’ve all eagerly anticipated. Apparently, Victoria’s Secret is that she is an insane alcoholic. But before we get to that good stuff… I thought JP’s reaction to Laker Girl having a son was so adorable. And boo you, Renee, for not getting that kiss on the rooftop. You didn’t even have to awkwardly bring the subject to kissing. You were already talking about kissing.

I think Renee wanted him to kiss her, but if she had just gone for it they definitely would have had a nice lil make-out. Also, is it totally unfair of me to want Renee to be here and think she is a good mom but to be judgmental that the Laker girl left her not even 2 yo son home to do this show?

But oh goodness, does the evening belong to Victoria. I want a calendar that’s just 365 Days of Victoria. Each day can be another gem of a quote. A few of my favorites:

“I just got here.” --Victoria, on the speculation that she might be wasted

“That’s what life is about -- straddling people… and things.” --Victoria, on what she’d do to Juan Pablo “if he were hers”

“I’m not a dog. I’m just a bitch.” --Victoria, on self-awareness

“Today I gave him the hymen maneuver.” --Victoria, on lord knows what.

If memory serves, and my understanding of female anatomy from 9th grade health class holds up, the “hymen maneuver” is NOT effective in saving someone from choking. But maybe it is. I’ve never tried it.

Then she wanders around, wasted, with stuff dangling from her bikini bottoms (what is that?) until she decides she’s had enough wasted crying in the bathroom and it’s time to leave. This is when the Mangiest-Looking Producer Ever (he looked like Adam Duritz’s homeless cousin) It's Elan! Of Twitter Fame! has to convince her not to leave without shoes on. And even through all this craziness, Juan Pablo still handled it with grace and compassion, like a total champ.

Have you noticed how nice all these girls are being to each other? Like, no one was even a bitch about what a shit show Victoria was being. This sorority sisters thing can't possibly last much longer, but its a welcome relief from the Tierra's eyebrow. Also, they cut away before it happened but did you notice Victoria's run back to the bathroom after talking to the producer, that was an "I'm about to puke run" if I've ever seen one!

Victoria was apparently so out of her mind that she couldn’t even come back to the house? That must have been one hell of a meltdown. Maybe she figured she was gonna be sent home anyway, so she might as well just really lose ALL her shit so she could spend her last night in a nice hotel room. I love how Juan Pablo was like, “Yeah no I’m not subjecting my child to this level of crazy. Kthanxbye.”

Can you imagine the shame spiral she must have went through when she woke up in a hotel room, in her bikini and started to piece together what happened the night before. If you are too drunk to go back to the bachelor mansion, a place where you are contractually obligated to have a glass of white wine in your hands at all times, then it's probably time to seriously think about the life choices you've been making. 

JP even took the time to have private convos with the ladies who didn’t get dates. He’s such a pro. And what does Amy do with her precious private time? Some terrible reporter gag. I can’t. Not only is this gimmicky and weird, but she’s clearly showing America that she is a terrible reporter. At least cry and tell Juan Pablo how being left out of dates this week reminds you of your father abandoning you at age seven. Give him something to work with.

That reporter nonsense was some first night shit, totally inappropriate in the second week.

My “Most Improved” Award of the night goes to Sharleen, who totally apologized for being an asshole in Week One. What do you think got her in the game this week?

I, in fact, know what got her in the game this week. It's having spent a week in the bachelor mansion with no date. And she realized, oh shit, I am NOT EVEN ALLOWED TO READ in this house and my only chance to go into the natural world is when JP invites me out, I better start loving my captor NOW. Just another example of how the bachelor is the most celebrated example of Stockholm Syndrome we have, and why I love it so much. 

(SIDENOTE: I just watched the promo for Sean & Catherine’s Wedding Special. I feel this deserves a special edition of Playwrights Discuss. You up for it, Fia? 100% It's on.)

After JP has yet another amazing and classy convo with Laker Girl, he does a simple, elegant Rose Ceremony and sends Reporter and Only Black Girl on their way. I really liked Chantel’s dress. She moved well in it and it flattered everything she’s got going on.

Not to sound like Renee's biggest fan, but I thought it was kind of insane when JP said he can tell Laker girl is a good mom bc she misses her kid - when Renee has been showing us she's a good mom all episode by mothering every girl who has a breakdown. Keep those eyes open, JP. But yes, I agree, JP is super classy and anyone who wears a dress as classy as Chantel's deserves another week, if only to break up the sequins.

Great work, Week Two. And it looks like Week Three promises more greatness, as the women all begin to really turn on each other. Can’t wait.


JUAN-UARY starts now

JP gave Sharleen the first impression rose, but has yet to impress her with his bachelor charms

JA: First of all, happy birthday, Fia!! You were my first friend at Juilliard (real talk) and it’s an honor to snark with you for this, our fourth season together. The moment we’ve all waited for has arrived -- JUAN-UARY!! -- and we embark on a new season of “El Bachelor,” also titled “Camila Gets A Crazy New Stepmom.” But seriously. Watching Juan Pablo with Camila makes my ovaries hurt. Although, if I were Camila’s mother, I would want to be slightly more involved in helping JP pick a crazy stepmother for my child. Maybe we’ll meet her later in the season.

SA: J, you are the sweetest and I am so glad I get to go on this blog journey with you every season! Also, I literally just said "Alright, Omar let's watch Juan Pablo find love" to my dog. So...I think you might need to move back to NY so we can watch together.

Passing thought - did JP put the rose over his peen during the photo shoot and then smirk at the photographer? I think he did. Also, yes, Camila Valentina is the cutest and it is way less embarrassing to do the obligatory Santa Monica pier / beach visit with a child. Sorry, Des.

Oh, look! It’s a quick visit from our favorite Texas Tomato, Sean Lowe!! Am I the only one who sat through that “skunk sprayed our dog” story wondering why the hell he and Catherine are living in Burbank??

Yes, Josh, yes! Also, loving that JP really does not want to refer to this as a journey and Sean was basically like, sorry buddy, you are contractual obligated to call this a journey and as much as you may try to make "la adventura" happen - fetch is just not happening.

My memorable moments from all the video intros of the ladies -- first off, Lauren, the girl from Oklahoma who gave us our first trauma of the season. Her trauma was apparently being dumped by phone by her live-in fiance, which is pretty horrific, not gonna lie. I also enjoyed Clare, that girl from Sacramento who is vaguely “part” Mexican and whose trauma involves a dead father who left a DVD for her future husband. I’m not even gonna talk about that girl Lacy who is trotting out her special-needs family (yep, I’m looking at you, Drew from Des’s season) and who also apparently opened her first elderly care facility at age 20. I have so many follow-up questions that mainly revolve around permits, but I’ll leave it alone.

But what about Amy the psycho massage therapist? My notes from this section literally read - crazy eyes, pod person, INSANE, might kill you, run JP run

As far as limo arrivals, I don’t really have much to say for the endless parade of girls, except that I really enjoyed Piano Tricycle Girl (Other Lauren?). I thought it was a really good sign that he followed her inside the house to get her name. Clare with her cray-cray baby bump also scored points. I HATED the fact that Kelly brought that dog with her, and that her career is listed as “dog lover.” How long are we gonna have to deal with that dog Molly who clearly hates Juan Pablo and hates this show and hates everything?

Okay, at least the free spirit knows that's not a real job. I just don't know how much more of these made up careers I can take - like even current NBA dancer is not a job and so I don't know what that former NBA dancer is trying to pull here. Also, Chantal - way to bring your A game with the proper pronunciation of Juan Pablo - killed it.

I like the nanny in Sambas - I liked her last night during her initial intro too - she may be an early fav for me - is her name Alli? I also like single mom Renee though they might find they have nothing in common except kids - still too early to tell.

Already you can also tell that Alexis is staying (she got a “cuuuuute” out of JP), as are Sharleen (“I like singers!”) and Gang Prosecutor Andi (did you see all that cute flirtation?).

I thought Alexis was a definite too, but nope, JP is full of surprises. Andi and JP have the most chemistry I've seen yet and Sharleen is way too smart and classy to be here. Also, I love how she was like, "yeah maybe you'll hear my sing, maybe, but I'm not gonna trot that shit out like some hobbyist"

This cocktail party did not disappoint. I was wishing to see multiple girls butcher 9th-grade Spanish, and my wish was granted. Remember when JP was talking to Nikki the Nurse and he was all “maybe I’ll see your hometown next week” and then he forgot that hometowns don’t air for another two months and so he tried to back-pedal?

No no, Amy the Massage Therapist. 1) Stop wearing a dress made out of theater curtains. 2) Stop giving massages to Juan Pablo. He’s weirded out by you and your essential oils. As am I. As is America. JP is not into this bitch and she is like having an orgasm over touching his hands. Get this girl out of here stat. Like, ABC, you cannot make him keep her for ratings, she is making us all extremely uncomfortable.

I love these producers. They were clearly like, “No one’s crying yet. Everyone’s having too much fun in the photo booth. Let’s just sit the First Impression Rose out here on a literal silver platter and let things get real for a second.” And it totally worked. First Impression Rose + Open Bar = Lauren is the first to cry.

Which brings me to my awards for the evening. My Mad Props Award goes to Gold-Star Ashley, the girl who spent her evening psychologically unraveling Lauren until she was a crying mess and then unleashed her on Juan Pablo in a state of complete meltdown. Lauren’s sitting there weeping about how this whole experience brings up all her issues and Ashley’s like, “So what are you gonna do?” Sure, Ashley also went home tonight, but what a ballsy move to actively exploit a fellow contestant’s insecurities like that. Ladies, take notes.

Also, were you following this girl's timeline - her fiance only dumped her 'a couple months ago' WTF! And she only met him 'a little over a year ago'. And now she thinks she's strong enough to handle America's most manipulative, sanity testing, social experiment aka ABC's the bachelor. Oh honey, thank god you got sent home on the first night.

My Thumbs Down Award goes, without a doubt, to Sharleen. JP basically proposed to her the second they sat down. He talked about how elegant she was and draped his jacket around her and complimented her dress a hundred and fifty times and gave her Sexy Soccer Eyes. Oh, right, AND THE FIRST IMPRESSION ROSE. And as he’s coming back with the rose, all she can say is, “Seriously?” And she hesitated for about an hour and a half before accepting the rose. Why? “I just feel like the connection is forced.” Um, hello, Sharleen? This is Bachelor Nation, gurl. Forced connection is WHAT WE DO. And from the season teaser, she doesn’t seem to improve her attitude. What does she think she signed up for?

I also like how he said, "I don't want you to feel uncomfortable or worried about tonight" while the thing that's really worrying her is how not into him she is. But, not gonna lie, I still like her. Just the fact that her voice is an octave lower than everyone else's gives this cast a little diversity.

As for the Rose Ceremony, it would have gone down as pretty uneventful were it not for that terrible moment with Kylie where she thought JP said her name, but he really said Kat’s. Wow, that was a soul-crushingly embarrassing moment. That moment was like that dream where you’re in the school play and you’re naked in front of everyone and you don’t know your lines. Mortifying.

Did you notice Kat mouth all bitchily "no, he didn't" when Kylie says she thought he said her name? Kat's got some claws,  except I seriously didn't remember seeing her at all before this. And how the F did dog lady get a rose and Alexis didn't? Oh god, now Kylie is crying and talking about how great it was to imagine her life with JP while it lasted - shut up, Kylie you're only 23.

I’m sorry we had to say goodbye to all those girls I didn’t recognize. And to Ashley, who was so busy playing Lauren so masterfully that she forgot to talk to Juan Pablo. And to Lauren, who is undoubtedly going to add this to her list of relationship traumas. P.S. my TV keeps telling me she is a “mineral coordinator”... what exactly is that? Is that an Oklahoma thing?

I know you like Clare, Josh, and you're instincts about Chris last season were right from the start, but you and JP are gonna have to sell me on her because from what I've seen -I'm not into it. Other thoughts - can't wait to get to know Alli the nanny better, to see Sharleen break JP's heart when she prematurely leaves, and to get more of that saucy chemistry between him and lawyer Andi. But for realz, we need to start sending some of these tan blondes home bc I don't care about them and can't tell them apart anyway. Also, I'm pretty sure that was the free spirit pulling a Courtney and skinny dipping with el bachelor. That's such a free spirit thing to do.

I’m so glad to be back in the Bachelor swing. I can’t wait to see what this season brings. And I definitely can’t wait to see which girl is crying in the bathroom saying she hopes Juan Pablo dies. That’s gonna be epic.