reginaweasley: the bachelorette

The Bachelorette, illustrated: Week 2

The Bachelorette producers wasted no time in setting up this season’s villain — Chad, a protein powder-guzzling alpha male, embodying the misogyny of Gaston from Beauty and the Beast, and the daily caloric intake of Michael Phelps.

We then move onto the first challenge, which is the classic “save the damsel-in-distress from a burning building” exercise. Grant has an unfair advantage here, being an actual firefighter and all, and is the first to win a one-on-one with JoJo. In the interest of fairness, I propose that the next Bachelorette group activities explore the other professions of the rest of the contestants, mainly the “Hipster” and the “Canadian.”

But wait! The part of the challenge where they hack away at shapes on the ground with axes looked pretty familiar, like the most fun Mario Party game of my dreams:

Moving on! Derek is the first to have a one-on-one date with JoJo, in which they have to make a series of tough decisions (“The first of many!” Derek chirps with just a tinge of desperation) like “Sky or Sea” and “North or South.” The whirlwind day ends on them having a romantic dinner by the Golden Gate Bridge, where they reminisce about just what a great, spontaneous day they had! My favorite part of The Bachelorette is when they pretend like their dates aren’t completely preplanned and every minute detail down what leafy vegetable will get stuck in their teeth during dinner hasn’t already been decided for them.

The next day, JoJo & co. find themselves at ESPN, where they stumble upon a taping of SportsNation. JoJo says some stuff about sports (“Sports: I like ‘em!” -JoJo, basically) and all of the guys are like, “WIFEY MATERIAL!” And that’s exactly what they do: practice proposing to JoJo with a giant rose and cheesy one-liners.

Chad rolls his eyes and makes petty comments about each of the guys’ lines, but when it’s his turn to woo JoJo, all he does is pout about how he can’t possibly find anything nice to say about her. He calls out the other guys for claiming to love JoJo, despite not knowing anything about her yet. True! Chad is making a surprising amount of sense here, as if he himself is not a person who decided of his own volition to enter a reality dating competition show. What other inconvenient truths will you drop on us, Chad?

Oh. Okay.

BACHEORETTE RECAP: THIS CHAD IS ON FIRE

ABC’s really been hyping up this episode with dramatic teasers of this week’s “two-night television event,” and last night’s episode ended with shots of dudes bleeding from the face and (presumably) Chad’s wounded knuckles. But knowing how The Bachelorette producers love a good troll, I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s revealed in tonight’s episode that the only reason they’re bleeding is because they all somehow managed to impale each other at the pool party while running around on the slippery tiles with their weird, spiky puka shell necklaces.

God bless all the non-contestant characters on today’s episode! From the girl who could orgasm on command on stage at open mic night (“I never asked for this” -everyone) to the cameo-thirsty security guard patrolling the Bachelor mansion in case of a roid-rage Chad attack, they were the true stars of this episode. And by “god bless” I actually mean, “Where did they find these people?”

This week’s group date takes JoJo and 12 men to a spoken word event where the guys have to share their most embarrassing sex stories. I guess the guys’ stories would have been much too raunchy for network TV, so the producers cut out pretty much everything. Except they may have left too much up to our own imaginations when the only snippet of Damn Daniel’s story we got was how he always has a knife on him and he cut off some girl’s hair as part of a freaky sex thing. The camera cut to a quick shot of him drawing some kind of stick figure during the 45-min prep period, and I can only guess what kind of scene it might have been depicting:

With tensions at an all-time high in the house, Evan uses the opportunity to take some cheap shots at Chad, insinuating that he takes steroids. Chad does not take this well, and grabs Evan by the back of his American Apparel v-neck, stretching it out a comical amount.

JoJo took James T. the muppet singer-songwriter on a one-on-one date that included a 1950s costumed group dance number that looked like it was straight out of a Johnny Rockets training video for new employees. James T. has two left feet, and you can’t convince me that JoJo wasn’t actually dancing with a cardboard cutout.

And of course, James T. wouldn’t be James T. if he didn’t carry around a guitar with him everywhere he went. He whips out his “second baby” and starts serenading an ecstatic JoJo with Wonderwall some song he wrote, and they kiss! I can’t find anything bad to say about this, he brings out her Texas accent when they’re together and it’s adorable!!

— DAMI LEE FOR THE VERGE