Saturday, March 6, 2010

Bachelor Episode 10: After the Final Rose . . .Finally

Welcome to a special edition of Think-It and thank you for waiting patiently for my take on the After the Rose show. I’ll disclose the fact that I’m feeling a bit cranky and edgy today for a host of reasons, including but not limited to the fact that I have to look at Jake on television strolling around various cities with that smug I’m-better-than-you smile on his face in that skin tight purple turtle neck that someone convinced him looked bitchin’ along with Vienna and her rusty reputation acting like both of them are better than what we all know to be true. I honestly hope we’re all wrong. I really do. I wouldn’t take that bet to Vegas, though. I’m not exactly taking off the gloves this week, but be prepared for me to unload a bit more than usual.

Let’s get to it.

Immediately following Jake’s big choice—which was made in November—we are treated to the After the Final Rose show—taped in February—in order to get an update on our new couple, give Tenley an attempt at closure, confirm that Ali is the new bachelorette, and break the news that Jake has agreed to be on Dancing with the Stars (WTF?). Apparently, the box step is taking the place of the paso doble this season. I doubt he’ll be setting the flamenco afire, but it’s comforting to know that if I ever become a commercial pilot, I’ll have months of vacation time to discover myself or whatever.

Woody Allen said, “In California, they don't throw their garbage away - they make it into TV shows.” That’s exactly what happened with this show. The entire thing was as contrived and insincere as Jake himself and, sadly, it came off that way. Even Harrison’s pull with the audience couldn’t rescue the show and at times, he looked embarrassed. Nonetheless, I watched the whole damn thing. Go figure.

Of course, we begin with the predictable, canned montage of Jake’s “amazing journey” from start to finish as we relive every aspect of the exact same montage from the Final Episode that ended three minutes prior to this show. Noticeably absent were any shots of Jake on his moped with that giant helmet. It’s refreshing to know that ABC pays attention to its focus groups. I found myself nostalgic for the giant helmet. Life was so much easier back then, wasn’t it? Perhaps ABC will see the error of its ways and film a Bachelor: After Jake Stopped Wearing the Helmet episode where we, the viewing audience, will be allowed to say a proper goodbye to the helmet and move on with our mundane lives. I wouldn’t take that to Vegas either.

Harrison enters in is customary tailored navy suit with a blue/gray oxford and monochromatic tie carefully selected to blend gently into the softly lit, blue neon round stage surrounded in Zen-like peacefulness by fresh roses and white candles. He attempts to convince us that we’re in for “surprises” and that Jake’s choice came from his heart. Fat chance on both of those. It was a lot like watching someone with a pair of twos attempt to get his opponent to go all in for fear of him holding a royal flush. This show should have been royally flushed in favor of a rerun. You can only run the bucket down the well so many times before it runs dry. Regardless, I continued to watch.

Harrison sets up Tenley’s impending arrival in order to allow Tenley the closure she’s probably no longer seeking but contractually obligated to find. She shows up looking—of course—smiley, positive, and nervous in her teal off-the-shoulder silky short dress thing. I doubt it’s true, but I allowed myself to think that she chose to wear the same color Vienna wore in the final rose ceremony just to show that she looked better in it than Vienna; which, let’s face it, is about as difficult as counting to one. Tenley looked great and was gracious. She seemed surprised that she got “a lot of love” from the audience—or at least she acted that way. I’m sure she reads the tabloids.

Tenley tells us that today is a big day to revisit her emotions. It’s been a magical journey. As we will soon see, everyone on the show takes a stab at the magical journey language, but Tenley is clearly the only one qualified to classify anything as a magical journey. After all, she did tour the country as Cinderella, Belle, and Ariel—all of whom unquestionably went on magical journeys.

Harrison begrudgingly turns the knife and cues the footage of Tenley getting dumped while a picture in picture shows her reaction to all of her pre-dumping “I have a bright future with Jake” comments. In retrospect, it would have been a much better finale if Jake would have taken someone more bitter—say Ashleigh or Michelle--to the end so the loser could bash Vienna and Jake after a few pops in the limo on the way off the island. Tenley, however, keeps it together while the scabs are sanded from her wounds and the open sores are filled with salt.

Tenley plays along with the script and sets up the “unanswered questions” talk so we can bring Jake out after he taped his shameless cross-promotional introduction to Dancing with the Stars. I have to admit I didn’t see that one coming. Then again, Nostradamus didn’t see that one coming. I’ve checked the quatrains. On second thought, Nostradamus did cryptically predict the end of the world. Perhaps this is what he meant. Jake and both of his left feet will be competing with the likes of Pam Anderson, Erin Andrews, and that chick from the Pussycat Dolls. The Pussycat Dolls? I saw that act the first time. It was called the Spice Girls. The cast members of Dancing with the Stars are all women who have appeared nude at one point or another in their careers. This begs the question: Why wasn’t Vienna asked instead of Jake?
Do ANY of these people actually have jobs? I mean aside from the ones who have fake jobs like working for Facebook in San Francisco or—apparently—being a pilot from Denton. They have one hell of a pilots’ union up there in Denton. Jimmy Hoffa didn’t have that much vacation. Jimmy Hoffa doesn't have that much vacation now.

In the next segment, Jake comes out, hugs Tenley in his black suit and dark shirt looking like a pit boss at Harrah’s Casino. Tenley and Jake share an intimate, insincere, contractually predetermined, scripted exchange. He gives her the “it’s not you, it’s me” speech and some garbage about “exploring and pushing hard.” All of a sudden he’s Vasco De Gama?

Jake assures Tenely that he was looking for the “magical spark” while they were going through their “journey.” Tenley awaits, patiently listening, but confesses that she clearly doesn’t get the “lack of physical connection” thing and asks Jake for a clarification. “Hey Tenley, Vienna puts out. You don’t,” I screamed at the TV while Jake fumbled around saying that she didn’t have some “intangible, unexplainable thing.” Intangible, unexplainable thing? Yea, loose morals. Come on, Jake. Call a tramp a tramp. To be fair, Jake is used to having satisfying and prolonged sexual experiences. The only difference is that now he has a partner.

For the people who asked me on email, the bottom line for men is the same as it is for women. We all pretend to want someone who’s toured the country as Cinderella, Belle, or Ariel but, given the opportunity, we chose someone who challenges us. Someone a little dangerous. That’s why Johny Depp and Robert Downey, Jr. are the sexiest men alive and not Burt Bacharach or Barry Manilow. It’s really that simple. Too nice is eventually too boring. Ironically, it’s the same reason that dolt Jake has been dumped by everyone he’s ever dated.

Tenley is sweet, kind, and genuine but she’s also clearly a doormat. Add that to the ever present “I’m divorced and I don’t sleep around” and all of a sudden, Vienna starts to gain ground. Top that off with the fact that when it comes to relationships, Jake is developmentally in high school and, bingo, Vienna wins. I saw it coming all season and I wrote about it. My prediction is that Vienna will get tired of him and dump him after several plastic surgeries and a failed attempt at a career in television. I think he chose incorrectly. He made his bed and it’s only a matter of time before he discovers Vienna and another man lying in it without him.

Back to Tenley. Harrison mercifully but tardily steps in, pulls the banter out behind the shed, and puts it out of its misery. Tenley chokes on the name “Vienna” and gets some sympathy applause from the audience when she asks if it was unfair to Vienna if Jake had feelings for Tenley. Jake manages a “good question” to fend off the audience’s obvious preference for Tenley over Vienna before going back to his horseshit “magical spark” answer and “closing the door on your heart” metaphors. Between this scripted exchange and his Dancing with the Stars announcement is when I got truly aggravated. Tom Cruise was less of a sanctimonious A-hole in his interview with Matt Lauer. Tenley is genuinely nice. Aware of this, Harrison takes a stab at “clarity,” compliments Tenley, and we move on to the next inane segment. Tenley exits and presumably goes back to her life. I honestly wish her well. Perhaps she’ll find someone soon who can actually do the box step and figure out where her heart is. You dodged a douchebag, honey.
Jake carries the next segment alone about as well as his new fiancé carries class. When asked about his attraction to Vienna, Jake actually drops “Vienna is my baby” and the Are-You-F*cking-Kidding Me look on Harrison’s face was priceless. Jake tells us he’s had a “series of high caliber relationships”—whatever that means--but has “never had this kind of heat in a relationship.” That’s what happens when you date someone who is constantly in heat, Jake. Just be sure and hide your Rolex when you go to sleep at night and never leave your PIN number and ATM card in the same place.

Jake spins Vienna’s image unconvincingly and Harrison attempts levity by referencing Jake’s penchant for crying on balconies like Jason in season’s past. Jake assures us that knows Vienna, her heart, her motives, her values, and her passions. That’s a big line to draw in the sand for a 23 year old ex-Hooters waitress whose daddy has taken care of everything, Jake. Hillary Clinton was convinced of the vast right wing conspiracy against her husband. She’s been putting those words between wheat bread and mayonnaise for years now. Let’s hope you’re not reliving that moment in a picture in picture on national TV after Vienna kicks you out of your starter home and claims squatter’s rights to your gazebo. You might want to transfer title in that motorcycle over to your parents as well. Sure, you have the argument that it was a gift, but it was technically given to you in California and it’s doubtful that it can be classified as community property when you get divorced. Better safe than sorry.

Next, it’s time to attempt to rehab Vienna and legitimize Jake’s journey. Vienna impersonates her family tree by walking a straight line to Jake in a magenta sparkly dress to a polite smattering of applause in order to show off the new highlights in her powdered wig and begin her reputation rehabilitation publicity tour. I’ve seen people with eyes like Vienna before but I had to pay admission and walk into a giant tent first. Vienna finally dyed her roots, which is a shame because it is apparent that she was once dark and pretty—when it got dark outside, she was pretty. Unlike Tenley, Vienna did not look virginal. In fact, she looked more like a Minneapolis freeway in December—like she gets plowed a lot. Vienna toned down her makeup a bit too. In fact, if you looked closely you could almost see the stretch marks around her mouth.

I told you I was cranky.

Vienna demonstrates that she’s obviously been coached by the same person who coached Jake and Tenley by dropping “magical,” “journey” and “fairytale” references. Don’t the producers watch their own show? Vienna came across about as sweet as lemon juice. Harrison makes a false “we’re so happy for you” announcement as Jake and Vienna giggle amongst themselves while the audience collectively rolls its eyes and fails to applaud when she shows them the ring ABC bought her. Jake talks about his “one first time” to propose. Well, to be fair, it was Vienna’s third time. Details, meh….

Vienna addresses the “fabricated stories” in the media apparently extracted from attention seekers she knew from junior high and everyone on stage ignores the fact that her bad reputation has been fostered by the ABC for the past 9 weeks. Again, details. We learn that Vienna will be immediately moving to Dallas, which is nice because she will be only 30 minutes South of Jake’s starter home in Denton. When I heard about the move I immediately pictured Vienna’s family loading up their truck with meth lab supplies, moonshine, live fowl, and all of their belongings, and leaving the swamps of Florida for greener pastures with Vienna’s dad’s motorcycle in tow.

In an attempt to shield Jake from blogs like this one and all of the other negative publicity surrounding his bride-to-be, Harrison announces that ABC will be sending them back to St. Lucia and, simultaneously, the guy who has been filling in for Jake for the past 9 weeks at his super important commercial pilot job launched a throw pillow at his television before putting down his scotch, walking upstairs to his children’s room, and letting them know that Daddy would be missing a few more soccer games and dance recitals.

Jake. What a jackass.

In the cheesiest moment in Bachelor history, Jeffery Osborne emerges from the dark in order to serenade our lucky couple. Osborne does his best Lee Greenwood impression by dusting off what used to be a great song. He was still wearing the yellow shirt and black vest evidencing the fact that he took time off between his shift dealing blackjack and doing two shows a night in the lounge of the nearest Indian casino. He performs On the Wings of Love as Jake and Vienna giggle obnoxiously and demonstrate just how much work Jake has to do in order to truly dance with the stars.

In the final segment, Ali emerges in a black version of Tenley’s dress in order to confirm the worst kept secret since Madonna traveled to Malawi to adopt another kid. Ali looked happy, rested, and ready to mingle.

Well, there it is: One full season of the Bachelor down and one full season of the Bachelorette waiting to film. I’ll be blogging about Jason and Molly’s wedding and then perhaps taking a week or two off while I plan my next move. Perhaps I’ll take some flying lessons.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Bachelor Episode 9: Jake Makes Mistakes

Well, it’s finally here. The big finale when Jake, our plastic, insincere tool of a bachelor must chose between the virgin and the vixen. Yes, it’s Holy Water versus Hooters Waitress. It’s hurry up and wait versus hurry up and bang me. It’s hot and wet versus heavenly and wedable and we’re lucky enough to have a courtside seat. Let’s get to it.

We begin, as we have the previous eight episodes, with serene sunsets and picturesque views of tropical islands with a voice over from Jake explaining that he’s finally figured out where his heart is and he’s convinced that “what he’s doing is right.” Nevermind that we will spend the next two hours hearing him hem and haw over his decision; this is the moment. He’s endured awkward exchanges, many kisses, exotic places, and eight heart wrenching rose ceremonies. He’s booted crazy and desperate women and separated the game players from the women here for the right reasons. Only the virginal Tenley and the . . .uh . . . not-so-virginal Vienna remain. We get shots of Jake crying on the balcony followed by Jake experiencing the sheer joy of a waterfall mud rub with Vienna and a presumptuous leg wrap greeting from Tenley. Clenched and anxious, we all took a sip of our pinot grigio and a bite of cheese and settled in to see what Jake would do. Frankly, the whole thing was a lot like hearing about that German porn that all of your buddies tell you about. It sounds awful, disgusting, and terrible; yet, somehow you have to see it.

We begin at Jalousie Bay, St. Lucia with Jake in his carefully planned royal blue v-neck and linen pants throwing rocks into the ocean contemplating his search for true love. We cut next to Vienna in her ruffley green hide-my-junk-in-the-trunk swimsuit reminiscent of Ed’s green short shorts from last season’s Bachelorette wandering aimlessly on the beach. Apparently, Forever 21 and Just Add Water were out of her bikini size before she left for the show. Tenley is also wandering in her swimsuit on the beach in search of love.


Presumably, both of them were on the lookout for a stray rock thrown by Jake skimming off the ocean. Everyone professes love for everyone else and the set up is complete. Just once, I want to see Harrison drop his surfboard and mai tai and join the show at this stage. For crying out loud, it’s like jumping on a Greyhound bus and not having a driver. Damn you, ABC budget cuts. Damn you, other television projects and obligations that prevented Harrison from being there. Couldn’t Rachel Ray just Skype him in like Oprah does?

Confident of living far beyond actuarial tables, Jake again drops the next 60 years in the future with his wife reference then dons a bright pink linen shirt and khaki pants to join his family who have thankfully arrived to “help him fall in love.” I’m glad they didn’t break it to him that they just made the trip for the free vacation. Nonetheless, perception is reality and Jake and his pink shirt enlist the fam in order assist him with what should be an easy choice. In a stunning Darwinian moment, Jake’s dad immediately begins to cry, proving that the pussy gene is indeed hereditary. Jake’s mom and her Heath Ledger as the Joker in the Dark Knight haircut seems anxious to meet both women. Jake’s sisters-in-law and two brothers complete the jury panel and Jake makes a canned speech about love and life before opening the floor to oral argument.

Jake does his best DaVinci impression and paints Tenely in broad, loving strokes as a picture of all that is right and good with the world. His picture of Vienna is more like a first grade finger painting. Jake’s mom asks “is this the one that everyone hated?” and Jake realizes that Vienna is going to have to climb Everest in order to please Mommy Dearest. We pray that Vienna has not made the mistake of hanging her evening dress on a wire coat hanger. Jake’s dad just sits there and cries and we wonder if in the pinnacle of his youth he too cried on balconies. We learn from the Joker that it is important that the woman in Jake’s life gets along with Jake’s “sister-in-laws.” Bad form, mom. Some words have irregular plurals. Goose, geese, mouse, mice, are examples. Some words with adjectives and hyphens form the plural by adding the correct affix to the noun portion of the word. Sister-in-law is one of those words. Ergo, SISTERS-in-law is the plural. The error is common; however, and not nearly as egregious as Vienna’s “Jake and I’s relationship,” but annoying anyway.

Tenely arrives appropriately in a white car looking newly virginal and stunning in her hot pink sun dress schlepping a large bouquet of the local flora purchased by a staff member in order to lure the bees away from Jake’s mother’s Heath Ledger perm. Good plan, Tenley. You’re on the 10 yard line. Just don’t fumble the football. Tenley is sufficiently nervous but proves to be articulate, considerate, and passionate when relaying her feelings about Jake to the family. Jim Jones was less convincing when he handed out Guyana punch. She even used her standby my-ex-husband-deflowered-then-cheated-on-me story to her benefit in order to seal the deal with mom and her Heath Ledger haircut. Tenley loaded the bases and then hit the ball out of the park. Frankly, I was shocked at how well it went. She made Snow White look like a whore. The only thing she didn’t do was an interpretive dance in honor of her love for Jake and her desire to be part of the family. I’m certain that would have gone well too. Nice job, Tenley.

Jake’s sisters-in-law attempt to get Jake to commit by asking Jake if he’s going to chose Tenley. Clearly, the entire family loves her. Jake says he cannot answer the question for fear of being sued by ABC, tied to a pole, and whipped repeatedly by Chris Harrison in a roman soldier costume; all of which are enumerated terms in his contract. Jake satisfies his Oedipus issues by obeying his mother’s wishes and showing Tenley that he can “play rough.” Jake “spontaneously” jumps in the pool for a make out session with Tenley and his brothers join in the fun by jumping in the pool and trying to make out with Tenley as well. Tenley reminds them that she has not been with many menly and they back off, happy in spite of their failure. Jake’s mother uses words like “perfect,” “blessed,” “happy,” and “welcome” to describe Tenley’s visit and, in a foretelling moment says that “the woman tomorrow better be really special.” At that point, we all got up to pee and refill our wine, giddy at the possibility of Vienna walking into the lion’s den and finally getting a taste of her own medicine.

I’ll give Tenley credit. Clearly, she was in a tough place at the start of the season. She proved herself to be resilient, sweet, honest, and sincere. Like Gia, she pleasantly surprised me and I found my belief that Jake’s head is planted firmly up his colon to be more solid than ever before.

Vienna, who has been repeatedly sacked and pillaged by a series of foreign invaders and is now well-known for her ability to handle large, elaborate balls . . . oh wait, that’s Vienna, Austria. Honest mistake. At any rate, Vienna arrives the following day to meet the family dressed in an innocent white dress. Frankly, that’s like putting a silk hat on a pig, but at least she cared enough to pretend. She carries a giant basket of contaminated fruit in order to attract flies that will inevitably end up in Jake’s mother’s Heath Ledger hairdo. That will be a nice reminder of her dislike for Vienna when she has to declare the fruit at customs and submit to a search of her belongings. Jake pulls Vienna aside in an attempt to warn her about the thirsty Roman mob on the other side of the fence. Oblivious, Vienna refers to Jake as her “potential future husband” and they trod on, undefined and uncertain, into the Coliseum in order to face their fate.

Jake’s mom offers a fake greeting in her orange tank top and black dress. She was obviously still upset that a house fell on her sister. To be fair, Jake’s mother seemed sincere and her radar was clearly on red alert when Vienna entered the room. The fact that Vienna died her roots black for the occasion was not enough to overcome the instant judgment of mom and sisters-in-law and the awkwardness began to spread like hot sauce on an order of Hooter’s wings. Vienna shows us that she failed to shave under her arms. To be fair, that’s the way they keep the flies off their watermelon in the swamp.

The inquisition begins and Vienna begins to stumble like a drunken sailor in Hong Kong. She doesn’t admit to her illustrious Hooters career; instead opting for the “I just graduated” speech. We wonder what her future holds in store for her. I suppose her newfound notoriety will bring her many career opportunities. However, it is clear that she will never become a teacher. She can’t keep her pupils straight. Alright, that’s a mean cross-eyed joke and I usually don’t tend to attack immutable characteristics. But, since it’s the big finale and all, I figured I’d give it a run. Sorry, Vienna . . . sort of.

After admitting to being from a Florida swamp and fooling no one with her “really honest” defense, Vienna is clearly on the ropes. Eye rolls and nervous laughter mask the hostility breathing inches below the dinner table. Jake’s brother looked extremely annoyed. We could almost hear the “free vacation, free vacation, free vacation” mantra echoing in his head as he tried not to bite his tongue off at Vienna’s lack of class. Helpless, Jake chugs orange juice wishing for the first time all season that he had alcohol.

The sisters-in-law take charge of Vienna and mom pulls Jake aside for a talking to. Mom makes it clear that she f*cking hates Vienna and the in-laws do their best to let Vienna know that they don’t ever want to be forced to spend Christmas with her. Vienna again ignores actuarial tables and says that she sees “Jake and I’s” relationship lasting the next 80 years.

Clearly in denial, Jake sits helplessly outside blaming himself for ruining his mother’s impression of poor, sweet Vienna. Is he really that dense? Jake could fall into a barrel full of boobs and come out sucking his thumb. The family read her perfectly and he was too blind to see it. Eventually, the producers attempt to save the sanctity of the ending and offer Jake’s family a couple more freebies if they pretend to accept Vienna. Done deal. We move on to the final dates.

We cut to Soufriere Springs and soon learn that “Soufriere” means “sulphur” in St. Lucian. Jake dons his gray thinking shirt evidencing his contemplative and troubled mood and quietly reflects in the rotten egg smell of the sulphur pit before Vienna “surprises” him in order to gain a few points. In response to Jake’s “do you like sulphur” question Vienna says that her parents use it in their meth lab back in Florida. They coat each other in mud presumably in fear of being attacked by Predator and eventually retire to the hotel where Vienna offers up a poorly written cliché of a note secured by the wedding ring her father gave her when she married him a few years back. Vienna loves “hem” and wants to spend her life with “hem.” They make out for a while beneath a mosquito net and use a lot of code language for the word “horny” before Jake relaxes in an attempt to let his erection subside before hitting the road to pawn that cheap ring in his linen pants in exchange for a knit shirt that actually fits him.

Next, we see Jake—confused again—awaiting his date with Tenley in board shorts, t-shirt, and the mysterious edit-ruining orange watch. Tenley performs the standard jump, giggle, leg wrap greeting taught in Bachelorette 101 and off they go for some scuba diving and touchy feely feelings talk. Jake broods. Tenley broods. Jake eventually confronts Tenley with the fact that there is no physical connection between them despite the fact that the emotional connection is overpowering. Translation: Vienna slutted it up pretty well for me last night and I’m wondering if you’ll ever be that good in bed. Put out or get out. Tenley does her best thinkin’ real hard face and listens to Jake circle around the point. Tenley is hurt and she and her French nails seek solace in Jake’s strong arms and orange watch.

They return to the hotel for their final evening together. Again evidencing her commitment to the show, Tenley presents Jake with an extremely thoughtful gift book and frame of pictures and forget-me-nots that makes Vienna’s hastily written note look like a bucket of feces before throwing all caution to the wind and letting Jake know that she’s his for the taking. To be fair, she realized that her only hope was to jump right into the pigsty with Vienna. Sometimes a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do. Even the Karate Kid had to kick that mean kid in the face in order to win the girl. We are left to wonder if Vienna’s penchant for promiscuity will prove too formidable. Tenley again swung for the fences and we all poured another glass of discount wine and began to sadly accept what we had suspected.

Jake wakes up shirtless in his pajama bottoms after apparently sleeping outside all night. He walks over to his private balcony to ponder his choices. Tenley wakes up in her innocent blue t-shirt and boxers amid soft lighting in order to picture life with Jake. Vienna sits on her balcony in her Jacqueline Bisset in The Deep linen shirt sans underwear. All of them don bathing suits and do some more semi-nude soul searching. It’s scenes like this that make this show two hours. Why can’t they just tell us that they soul searched and contemplated?

Jake showers and puts on a purple blouse in order to meet with the highest bidding ring sponsor, Neil Lane, in order to select two diamonds befitting each potential Mrs. Denton Housewife. Jake tells us that “a ring is a promise between two people.” Yea, and it’s also a huge cash layout for something that can be pawned in the event of a break up or the need for more plastic surgery. Ask Vienna’s ex-husband.

Jake is confused again and gives us a sniffley confession about letting his “heart lead” while we see Tenley and Vienna get their make up done and their hair did in preparation for the Engaging and Ejecting Ceremony. Vienna spackles her face and Bondoes her eyelids while bluebirds and rabbits from the Enchanted Forest delicately assist Tenley in putting on her dress over a symphony of whistles. I could have sworn I saw dwarves in the background, but I was pretty loaded at this point in the show.

Like Tiger Woods’ Sunday red Nike golf shirt, Vienna dons her customary teal dress. The dress looked like something that Wonder Woman’s real family would have worn on that Amazon island on those episodes when Lynda Carter would take the invisible plane and return home. The teal sparkly belt was likely a metaphor for the Lasso of Truth. Both woman profess their nervousness and board helicopters oblivious of the crash risk and take a ride toward Jake while Wagner’s Ride of the Valkryies plays in the background. I was ready for Robert Duval to emerge in a cowboy hat and a yellow dickey and profess his love for the smell of rose ceremonies in the morning.

Jake sits sweating like Vienna in church in his shark skin suit amongst the bouganvillas, orchids, and aloe vera plants, awaiting the arrival of the broads. What was up with that suit? He looked like he should be playing piano at a casino lounge in Branson rather than proposing to someone.

Being the first to arrive at a final rose ceremony is like being the token comic relief black guy in a horror movie. We know Tenely is destined to be dumped. She looked stunning in her gold Fay Wray from King Kong dress. Amid the jungle background, I half expected a giant ape to pick her up and carry her away to his lair after stepping on local tribesman and blowing her dry. No such luck. In lieu of a giant ape, Harrison takes a break from playing shuffleboard and downing screwdrivers at the local resort and arrives just in time to escort Tenley to her demise.

I will give Jake credit for cutting to the chase. No long speeches or professions of neverending confusion, he just went for the jugular. Jake force feeds the poison apple to the virginal Tenley and she loses with more class and dignity than anyone in Bachelor history, proving what an idiot Jake is to select Vienna. Jake cries and eventually escorts her back to the able emotional safety net that is Chris Harrison and he cries on that giant balcony prior to composing himself in anticipation of throwing the rest of his life into a swamp. We could almost hear Jake’s mother’s arteries hardening.

Jake tells Tenley in parting that “some part of him was not coming naturally with her.” We all know that Vienna is much more skilled than Tenley at making things "come naturally" and Jake finally shows his hand. Leading with his heart, my ass. Memo to Jake: there’s a reason that I Want to Be a Millionaire allows a confused contestant to call a friend and ask the audience. They are usually correct. You had the benefit of both and you ignored them. Nice job. Start carving up the gazebo now and save yourself the aggravation down the road.

Vienna arrives in the slutcopter, uses I as a possessive pronoun again, and refers to Jake as her Prince Charming. Jake returns the trinket wedding ring that Vienna’s father gave her and confirms that she and her father are, in fact, divorced before dropping to one knee and ignoring the millions of people screaming at their televisions and choking on their chips and queso in order to propose to Vienna. Vienna uncrosses her eyes for a moment in order to inspect the new hardware and some legal secretary in a Denton divorce lawyer’s office began to type In the Matter of the Marriage of Jake Pavelka, Petitioner v. Vienna Girardi a/k/a Vienna Pavelka, Respondent filed in the District Court of Denton County, Texas, in anticipation of handling the divorce. We end with a montage of Vienna whoring it up over the last nine weeks, making Roz look like Tenley. Like watching Rocky for the twentieth time, I knew it was coming, but I was still sad when it happened. The good news for Jake is that he won’t be wasting any money on the opera every weekend. Vienna is not likely to put on a funny hat and sip mint juleps on the outfield grass. I hope he has a taste for fried pickles and hot wings. I’m sure she’ll be named an honorary Denton Hooters girl if she chooses not to work there right away.

With the final Amazing count at 134, Absolutely at 33, and at Journey 39, we see Jake (which rhymes with ‘mistake’) and Vienna ride off into a St. Lucia sunset in search of more publicity.

Thank you all for continuing to read every week. I will submit another blog entry this week on the After the Rose show and I plan to submit more on Jason and Molly’s wedding and the 20/20 Inside the Bachelor special. In the meantime, submit your comments and questions and I’ll try to answer all of them from the male perspective. Until next week, I’ll literally be crying on a balcony. If only I knew where to get a shark skin suit.