May 24th, 2011
11:30 AM ET
Last night's season premiere of "The Bachelorette" began by reminding us that Ashley Hebert could have won Brad Womack's heart earlier this year on "The Bachelor," but failed to do so.
Ashley informed us that as "The Bachelorette," she's learned from her mistakes and is ready to make things right. And since she goes to dental school in Philadelphia, making things right apparently involves mimicking the "Rocky" pose, which may be city law.
Chris Harrison welcomed us back to the manor for the new season with, as always, a look at some of Ashley's suitors. (At least two of them expressed hope that this year's "Bachelorette" was last year's "Bachelor" winner, Emily Maynard. Well, she appears to be single again...)
After a quick break, Ashley joined Chris at the manor. The new "Bachelorette" said she's ready to fall in love, but added that she's nervous there may be suitors who are on the show for the wrong reasons.
Chris looked intrigued, and asked Ashley to clarify. Ashley revealed that another contestant from her "Bachelor" season (whose name was not revealed) warned her about a divorced dad from Salt Lake City named Bentley, saying he was on the show to promote his new business. Chris, looking shocked that Ashley came so prepared, asked how she and the former competitor knew about Bentley. It turns out the ex-contestant knows Bentley's ex-wife. Small world.
Then it was time for the men to arrive. The first was Ryan P., a solar company executive who said he's looking for something more powerful than the sun. Global warming, perhaps?
Mickey the chef said he had a gift from "all the men in America." When Chantal made a similar offer to Brad Womack on "The Bachelor," Brad got slapped in the face. Thankfully, Mickey just kissed the girl.
Ames presented Ashley with ballet tickets. I should note that Ames went to three Ivy League schools, traveled to 70 countries and ran 39 marathons. He must have taken a wrong turn on his way to the "Jeopardy!" tryout.
We then met Jeff, or, as he will now be called, "The Phantom of the Bachelorette." Why? Well, he stepped out of the limo wearing a mask covering much of his face. His philosophy was that he wanted to "take his face out of the game" and let Ashley learn what's on the inside. Frankly, he looked like the love child of The Lone Ranger and pro wrestler "Hurricane" Helms.
Eventually, Ashley came face-to-face with Bentley, who looked like he had shoulder pads lined inside his suit jacket. He mumbled something to Ashley and went inside.
In total, there were 25 suitors looking to win Ashley's heart, and all of them forgot to pack a razor. Seriously, whatever happened to facial grooming? Even Phantom had a strong five o'clock shadow.
We went down to 24 suitors rather quickly thanks to Tim, a liquor distributor who apparently decided to test his products a little too much that night. After threatening to rip Phantom's mask off, Tim eventually fell asleep on a couch near the pool. Ashley declared him out of the competition and got a few of the suitors to place him in a car so he could be driven home. Surprisingly, the show didn't promote the fact that Phantom won the quickest feud in "Bachelorette" history.
Ashley later met with Matt Colombo, who whipped out a cell phone to call his mother and have her chat with Ashley. Didn't Justin Rego leave last year's "Bachelorette" for, among other things, using a cell phone? Anyway, Matt's mom warned Ashley to use protection. Perhaps Mom should focus on helping Matt's brother, who plays for the Dallas Cowboys, stop Tyron Smith from taking his starting job this fall.
But back to Phantom, who told Ashley that wearing the mask proves that he has all the confidence in the world. Ashley then declared the mask to not be a "cheesy gimmick." It was that precise moment when my head started hurting.
Ashley then spent some time with Bentley, who mumbled something about being ready to tackle the dating pool again. Was Ashley warned about him because he's a bit of a snore? After all that, Ryan the solar company executive received the first impression rose, earning him a spot for next week.
Six other suitors joined Tim in "elimination central." Among those gone are Anthony, a New Jersey butcher who went to the manor sans necktie; Frank and Jon, two guys who carried Ashley around like a sack of potatoes when they first met her; and Chris M., this season's resident Canadian.
What did you think of last night's "Bachelorette" premiere?
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