May 22nd, 2012
12:01 PM ET
Monday's "Bachelorette" began in the dullest way possible with a news report about "The Bachelorette" filming in Charlotte.
And since that had to be the most boring opening in "Bachelorette" history, the show tried again, this time with Emily and her daughter getting together with friends and family at the park.
I get more thrills watching grass grow, so maybe the third time was supposed to be the charm as cameras headed to the mansion to show Chris Harrison corral the 19 remaining contestants for a chat.
There were two individual dates and one group date this week, and the first date card went to ex-football player Ryan, with the clue that he was going to be "king of the Queen City." That concerned me somewhat, as I'm imagining Ryan and Emily staging a bloodless coup of Charlotte. Will someone please think of the barbecue?
Ryan figured he and Emily were going to do "something special" on their date, and he was right. Emily's the "snack mom" for her daughter's soccer practice, so Ryan headed to Emily's house to bring in the groceries and bake chocolate chip cookies for daughter Ricki's team.
I'll give the show some credit here - this date is different and a nice change of pace from the helicopters, bungee jumps and cliff diving we usually see. If you have a single parent as the title character, show them and the contestants acting like parents.
Back at the mansion, the men were enjoying an annoying show tradition - the swimming pool. Can't they have a Wii to play with? The men complimented Emily for looking good in "regular" clothes. If she were wearing irregular clothes, I'd be concerned - three-sleeved tops are definitely a "turn-off."
But back to the date: When Emily and Ryan showed up at soccer practice, Emily dropped off the snacks while Ryan stayed in the car to drink his juice box (yes, a juice box).
It should be noted that both Chris Harrison and Emily have emphasized several times that Emily's daughter would not interact with the contestants during filming, and that Ricki has not been told the real reason why her mother is being followed by cameras.
Later that day, Ryan and Emily dressed to the nines - although Ryan looked like he made it to the sevens - for a night out in Charlotte. This apparently involved walking the red carpet, surrounded by hundreds of "fans" cheering and snapping pictures (guess Wal-Mart was closed) for dinner at one of Charlotte's fanciest restaurants.
During dinner, Emily wondered if Ryan's "too perfect," just like Brad Womack. That may be the first time the terms "Brad Womack" and "too perfect" have been mentioned in the same sentence. Nevertheless, Ryan got a rose.
The group date was next, with 13 contestants ready to help Emily put on a variety show for a charity. And who better to help put on the show but some Muppets? (This may be their most embarrassing performance since "Muppets from Space.")
We see two of the men doing stand-up comedy with Fozzie Bear, and their jokes are so bad they make Fozzie look like Jerry Seinfeld. A few others did a dance routine with Miss Piggy, while all of the contestants got on stage at the end to sing "Rainbow Connection" with Kermit.
Even Chris Harrison got into the act, joining Statler in the heckler section (Waldorf called in sick). Glad to know Chris has something to fall back on if this hosting thing doesn't work.
We then headed to the post-show party, where Emily had to give a rose to one of the 13 men. That led to the second week of trash-talking between MC Stevie and Kalon the helicopter hooligan. Stevie told Kalon that he doesn't like him, with Kalon responding that he wouldn't like himself if he were Stevie. Incredibly deep.
I can't blame Stevie for not caring for Kalon – his name sounds like he should be teaming with Skeletor to take on He-Man.
After all that concluded, Emily gave the rose to Jef with one "f". Now that he's safe for another week, perhaps he can go back to searching for that other "f".
Joe, the field energy adviser who performed an ill-advised "potty dance" last week, landed the second individual date, and he and Emily went to West Virginia to check out The Greenbriar, the fanciest hotel this side of "fancy town."
Of course, given this is "The Bachelorette," it was also a good time for Emily and Joe to strip down to their skivvies and jump into the pool.
Later that night, Emily did her best Scarlett O'Hara impression by walking down a classy staircase in a long evening gown. Joe, on the other hand, looked like the guy who sold me the sedan with the non-working odometer when I was in college.
The two had dinner, where they got all philosophical about where Joe sees himself in five years. Joe gave an answer that confused Emily, who responded with a question. Joe responded to that with a question of his own, a classic no-no when it comes to spousal conversation.
Emily opted to give Joe the boot, saying he was a good guy but he wasn't on the same page as her. (I actually place the blame on the mullet-in-training I noticed on the back of Joe's head.)
Joe didn't even get a chance to finish dinner before he left - Emily should have at least given him a chance to eat his roll.
While this was going on, Kalon told several of the single fathers that they made the decision to "put fatherhood on hold" to do the show. It took us just two episodes, but we finally have our villain in Kalon. It's unfortunate that he doesn't look the part of a "Bachelorette" villain - with the sunglasses, blah hair and pasty body, Kalon looks like Hunter S. Thompson after a morning bender.
At the rose ceremony, Emily said farewell to Aaron the biology teacher and Kyle the financial adviser. Admittedly, I forgot that Kyle was still on the show. When that happens, chances are your odds of winning is between slim and none, and slim left town.
Next week, Dolly Parton shows up, ropes are climbed and plaid is worn.
What did you think of last night's "Bachelorette" episode?
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