Recap: The Bachelorette Finale and After the Final Rose Special

Stop reading now if you don’t want spoilers on the finale of The Bachelorette with Kaitlyn Bristowe (original air date: Monday, July 27, 2015).

We kick off the three-hour Bachelorette finale event live in Los Angeles with host Chris Harrison and an audience full of overly-smiling women with fresh highlights and probably spanking new outfits. Harrison promises the usual: “a dramatic and shocking season finale.” And so it begins.

Kaitlyn’s final two men – Nick and Shawn – are packing up their shit in Utah to join Kaitlyn in LA to meet her family and have their final dates before the big final rose/engagement deal.

In LA, Kaitlyn is hanging with her family and admits she’s falling in love with both men. She reveals that a man from a previous season (being Nick V) is still in the running and that him and the other man left despise eachother. Her sister Haley quickly susses out that the re-run dude is Nick, and she’s excited. Kaitlyn’s mom Leslie, on the other hand, is not the biggest Nick fan. Kaitlyn admits that she didn’t think she would be super physically attracted to Nick based on what she saw of him on Andi Dorfman’s season, but that she turned out to be super attracted to him. And we know this to be true because they have crazy chemistry and also banged on one of their dates earlier in the season. Kaitlyn insists that their attraction isn’t just physical, but that her feelings for both men go deeper than that and include strong communication and a mental connection.

Nick arrives to meet her family and Kaitlyn admits to him that her family is aware of their ‘intimate encounter’ in Dublin. Nick seems appropriately embarrassed about that. After being introduced to everyone, Kaitlyn’s sister asks Nick why he decided to go another round on The Bachelorette and join the show after it had already started filming. Nick conveys that him and Kaitlyn had been in contact before she was made the Bachelorette and he liked her so much that he didn’t want to risk her ending up with someone else and so he made the bold move of coming to New York to meet her. Over dinner, the grilling continues with Nick being asked what his true motivations were for coming on the show again (ie. another 15 minutes of fame?). Nick insists that it was all about Kaitlyn and he wouldn’t have come otherwise. Kaitlyn’s mom Leslie is the first to pull Nick aside for a private chat after dinner. She is anxious to speak to him because watching Nick on Andi’s season left her with a bad impression. As a reminder, Nick also made it to the final two on Andi’s season and it really seemed like they would end up together but when she ultimately picked Josh over Nick, he reacted poorly during the After the Final Rose taping and called Andi out for having sex with him if she wasn’t in love with him. So Leslie tells Nick her impression was that he came off possessive, jealous and arrogant. Nick insists that he didn’t join the season just for “a second chance on the show” and gushes that it’s hard for him to “get enough” of Kaitlyn and that he’s in love with her. Her mom gets emotional when Nick expresses his feelings for Kaitlyn and when he adds that he would want to ask Kaitlyn to marry him in the end. Nick also tears up, which mom loves. After their chat, Leslie says she was totally wrong about Nick and would be thrilled to have him as a son-in-law. While chatting with Kaitlyn’s father, Nick describes Kaitlyn as “bold and brave,” and says again that he’s very much in love with her. Dad gives his blessing too. Nick has clearly won over Kaitlyn’s family, and him and the Bachelorette say their goodbyes.

The next day is Shawn’s turn to meet her family, and their turn to meet his biceps. After Nick’s successful fam jam, Shawn has a lot of work to do. He arrives wearing the shit out of a button down shirt and jeans and has gifts for everyone (including sister Haley’s kids, which goes over super well). Haley is quickly on “Team Shawn.” Shawn tells the cute story about seeing Kaitlyn when she was on Chris Soules’ season and watching her be sent home. He snapped a pic of her and captioned it “Don’t worry Kaitlyn…I’m coming for you!” and sent it to his friends. His sisters encouraged him to watch the show because they thought that Kaitlyn was totally his type and he was already in the process of being considered for the next season and it was looking like Kaitlyn might be up for Bachelorette. Those sisters are fucking clairvoyant!

Over dinner Shawn cheers the family saying “I hope this is the first of many gatherings.” When mom Leslie speaks to Shawn alone, she indicates that she’s “concerned about jealousy” and asks how he would handle the jealousy that he’s exhibited in the “outside world” because “people are drawn to Kaitlyn.” She also brings up the fact that Kaitlyn slept with Nick (why?) and Shawn answers perfectly, saying that he understands that him and Kaitlyn were not in an exclusive relationship and that once they were official/engaged the jealousy wouldn’t be a factor. This is a more mature, confident side of Shawn and me likey. He adds that the experience of the show has made them stronger as a couple. Meanwhile, Kaitlyn’s sister Haley is telling her that the difference between Nick and Shawn that has her on Team Shawn now (besides the presents) is “the way that you are around him.” She adds that they already seem like a couple and are obviously both physically and emotionally drawn to each other. Shawn tells Kaitlyn’s dad he’d “be proud to have her as my girl, my wife potentially.” Shawn asks if he can get Kaitlyn’s mom out there too (her parents are divorced but remarried to other people who are both there and also remain good friends) and he asks them for their permission to get engaged. Both parents give Shawn their full support and blessing.

Back in the live studio audience, Chris Harrison takes a quick poll on Team Shawn v Team Nick. The audience seems to be split 50/50.

Time for the final dates!

First up is Nick. They cuddle on a boat and sip wine and talk about how much their families would gel. Kaitlyn’s voiceover states that “Nick brings out a side in me that nobody else really does.” Mostly they make out. During the evening portion of their date, Nick confesses to feeling different being one of the final two for Kaitlyn than how he felt in the same position with Andi. They talk about him showing up unannounced in New York and how despite having not met in person before that night they just totally “clicked,” and it was clear that their connection was meant to go beyond texting, tweets and phone calls. “I am really happy that you took that chance,” Kaitlyn tells him. Nick tells her “I got you a gift, it’s in my bedroom.” This is the first of two times that I will shout at the TV: “IS IT YOUR PENIS?” Kaitlyn thinks how I think, clearly, and assumes he’s kidding around. But it turns out there is a gift: a framed photo of the two of them on their date in Ireland along with a ‘poem’ he wrote. In my entire life I have never had a dude write me a poem, nor have I heard of this happening to a friend and yet at least one or two dudes on every season seems to be a poet (but with a six-pack ). I can’t tell if this bodes well or poorly for the American education system. Kaitlyn’s voiceover exclaims: “When I look at Nick, I know I’m in love.”

The next day it’s Shawn’s turn for his final date. He arrives in a fitted long-sleeved white t-shirt, causing panties to drop all over North America. Nick has what I refer to as a secret hot body. He looks great in clothes but it wasn’t until we saw him shirtless with Kaitlyn that we realize that he’s in amazing shape. Shawn on the other hand? Well, there’s nothing secret about Shawn’s hot body. It’s bonkers. Kaitlyn barely seems to notice and is obviously confused and anxious heading into this date, following such an amazing final date with Nick. At this point, it looks like Nick will be getting that final rose of the season. They sit down at a winery for a picnic and it’s super duper awkward. They can barely make conversation and Kaitlyn is having trouble making eye contact. This could also be because Shawn appears to have all the sunburns on his face. At one point Kaitlyn even asks him if he’s wearing sunscreen. Their conversation stalls and it’s weird. Finally Shawn brings it up and says he’s reacting to her awkwardness. “Nothing’s changed on my end,” he assures her. Shawn adds that he may be feeling a bit off because he knows there’s still another man left in play.

Going into the night portion of their date, we can only hope that Kaitlyn has gotten her shit together otherwise it’s going to be more weirdness. On his end, Shawn is “nervous” and “questioning everything.” With these two, it sometimes fells like every date they’re starting from scratch. Luckily, Shawn makes the effort to reduce the awkwardness and puts his heart on the line. “So I know today was a little awkward,” he says to breaks the ice. “I think it could be pretty amazing after this.” Kaitlyn asks if he’ll watch the show back after, and he says that he’ll likely laugh seeing her make out with Joe. This makes Kaitlyn laugh and her entire posture and attitude seem to change in an instant. They laugh so easily and seem so natural together. “It will never not be fun with you,” Shawn says when Kaitlyn wonders if their love would fade six or seven years down the road. “I’d be so proud to have you by my side,” he states, adding that he knew this the moment he stepped out of the limo. Shawn also has a gift for our Bachelorette (sadly, not his penis): a memory jar filled with trinkets from their past dates. The verdict? These two are back on track. Kaitlyn admits to feeling “so relieved” after their date. But tomorrow is the big day – the final rose. She doesn’t even get a day to think about it? Seems a bit cruel. I wonder if it’s because the production schedule got all fucked up when they switched the timing for hometown dates which many Bachelor/Bachelorette fans think was a punishment of sorts for Kaitlyn for sneaking off-camera time during which she apparently told Shawn he was “the one” and also some on-camera time where she slept with Nick which caused a bit of a ruckus. Whatever the reason, having less than 12 hours to make a decision like ‘who do I want to marry?’ seems overwhelming. Kaitlyn confesses that she is “in love with two men” and one of them is going to be “blindsided” the next day, which she hates. She cries talking about it.

The live studio audience looks stressed as fuck and they’re not the ones picking between two dudes.

Next, jeweller Neil Lane arrives with the box of bling at Shawn’s door. Shawn examines the ring options. Meanwhile, Nick is referring to himself as “an acquired taste” (funky spunk?) and is wandering about stressed out in a parade of handsome outfits. He’s just praying he gets a knock at the door from Neil Lane with a box of rings, and not our Bachelorette looking to dump him before he gets down on one knee. We’re reminded of the fact that this is what happened to Nick on Andi’s season – he was awaiting Neil and instead Andi knocked at his door to cut him loose before the final final rose. Nick breathes a huge sigh of relief to find the jeweller at his door. Neil pretends to admire Nick’s Claddagh ring (Kaitlyn has a matching one from their Ireland date).

Later that evening, both men are a bundle of nerves in suits while sitting in separate limos en route to see Kaitlyn. Kaitlyn is losing her shit and keeps crying and looks like she would rather vomit in her own purse than deal with this. “I really did need to take it this far to figure it out,” she wails.

With a few exceptions, the first person to get out of the limo is the one who gets dumped. When Nick exits first, my stomach clenches. And when we see Kaitlyn’s face on his approach, there’s no doubt that Nick is going to end up in second place. Again.

Nick stands before Kaitlyn saying “I look at you and I am thinking about how in love I am with you” and he starts to cry. After what seems like forever (but is probably only a minute of talking), Nick goes to propose and Kaitlyn stops him.

“No?” Nick stutters. Oh ouch. Ouch ouch ouch. Poor guy.

Kaitlyn can barely look him in the eye. “I did need every single second that we had together…the only explanation I have is just that my heart is with somebody else,” she says. Nick looks completely gutted and humiliated and nauseous. “I don’t think there’s anything you could say that could make me less confused,” Nick states. Kaitlyn responds with: “Everything that we’ve been through and done, it’s because that was real to me.”

Nick half begs her to stop telling him how she cared about him and how hard it was to decide, etc. etc.. He even gets a little angry, but isn’t at all a dick about it (sidenote: I would be a dick about it). “What I felt for you was more than just a moment,” Nick says. He tells Kaitlyn that clearly she doesn’t feel for him what he felt for her and she obviously wasn’t in love with him as she claimed to be because otherwise they would be engaged rightnow. Hemumbles that he doesn’t really have anything else to say and doesn’t want to continue talking because he doesn’t “want to say anything hurtful.” Someone learned their lesson after being eviscerated by Bachelorette fans on Andi’s season! Kaitlyn, on the other hand, does want to keep talking about it. She really seems to want to explain why but there’s nothing left to say and Nick says as much. It’s the most I have ever liked Nick. Kaitlyn walks him out, looping her arm through his. “I’m not trying to sugar-coat anything” she says and they hug goodbye. In the Reject Limo of Broken Hearts™, Nick tosses the ring box and tries to hold it together, saying “I am the world’s biggest joke.” We cut back to the studio audience where his family (seated in the front row) is crying, including his little sister.

Kaitlyn has regained her composure and is awaiting Shawn. It’s even more obvious now, seeing her face when Shawn arrives, that she was going to be saying goodbye to Nick. With Shawn, she doesn’t look like she just ate a bad egg salad sandwich. She looks exhilarated. Shawn tells Kaitlyn that “from the moment I stepped out of the limo that first night I knew nothing was ever going to be the same,” and adds that he “ would not change any of it because it led us here tonight.” Shawn tells Kaitlyn that he sees her as a best friend and “partner in crime” and that he’s already the happiest man in the world. Kaitlyn counters with “You light me up and make me laugh and most importantly you allow me to be myself.” “I never want you to question what we have ever again because I am completely yours‎.” She tells Shawn that she loves him and has never felt about anyone the way she feels about him and ends with “you are the one and you always will be.” I kind of love that she brings the “you are the one” into it given the controversy that surrounded her telling Shawn that off-camera earlier in the season. Shawn gets down on one knee and proposes and she says “no thanks.” Just kidding, obviously Kaitlyn accepts his proposal.

We return once again to the live studio audience to kick off the After the Final Rose special. Kaitlyn and Shawn join Chris Harrison on stage and they look super in love and happy. Shawn reiterates the story about the photo (and they flash it on screen) that said “Don’t worry Kaitlyn…I’m coming for you!” Shawn had taken the photo on the episode where Kaitlyn was sent him on Chris Soules season and he had captioned it and text it to some friends, proving that even things that are borderline creepy can come off super romantic if you have a face like Ryan Gosling and the body of a Greek God. It all worked out for these two! (so far)

The aforementioned Shawn photo and caption

The aforementioned Shawn photo and caption

They exit and Nick joins Chris Harrison on stage, confirming that he feels a “bad case of deja vu.” Oh man, twice rejected in the finale. That sucks. Ooh maybe they’ll make Nick the next Bachelor? But first I’m going to insist that he shave that beard he’s grown since being dumped. I’m not sure if he’s ‘liked enough’ by the powers that be (meaning humans with a vagina between the ages of 24-50 who love rosé and probably own every Twilight book). Chris asks Nick what made him “so confident” in his relationship with Kaitlyn. Nick touches upon their connection before he joined the show and Chris takes the opportunity to dig a little deeper on the extent of that relationship. Nick insists it was “a friendship” that started before Kaitlyn was up for Bachelorette and that his biggest fear in approaching Kaitlyn in New York was that their in-person connection would fall flat. Nick adds that when things got down to the final few men, him and Kaitlyn talked a lot about getting engaged, also contributing to his confidence. He also claims that the fact that their relationship got intimate early on wasn’t weird to them because they had that established emotional connection already. Chris asks Nick why he feels that Shawn hates him so much. Nick admits that they both let their immaturity come out and didn’t show the “best versions” of themselves, making things even more difficult for Kaitlyn.

Now, fans of the show may have read about or seen a ‘spoiler’ photo that circulated a few weeks back that eluded to the fact that Kaitlyn ended up with Shawn. I make a point of not reading spoilers but this one was hard to avoid. Kaitlyn accidentally snap-chatted a photo of her and Shawn together when the show was about 1/2 way through it’s run, essentially spoiling the ending. They addressed it on Jimmy Kimmel last night, if you’re interested. If you’re curious, Shawn is team Ben H. for Bachelor.

So back to After the Final Rose, Shawn comes out and joins Nick on a tiny couch, with Shawn joking “you guys couldn’t have found a bigger couch?” Nick does a cute thing where he ‘introduces’ himself to Shawn and he tells Shawn that he looks nice and Shawn says he likes the beard. DO NOT ENCOURAGE THE BEARD, SHAWN. When questioned about his dislike for Nick, Shawn admits he just had a “bad feeling” since Nick joined Kaitlyn’s man harem a few episodes in. He sort of cops to being a jealous dude, but claims he was never jealous “about anyone in particular.” Shawn says that he’s buddies with Ben H. who was final three and had a connection with Kaitlyn yet Shawn says he was never jealous about that; in fact, Shawn claims him and Ben H. chatted a ton about their respective relationships with Kaitlyn. Shawn kind of shits on the producers for playing up the ‘feud’ instead of showing more moments of their dates with Kaitlyn, and Chris Harrison cruises right past that and declares a somewhat “amicable” end to the Shawn-Nick situation.

Kaitlyn joins Nick on stage (Shawn is gone) and the audience is dead quiet. She indicates that her love for Shawn was simply stronger than what she felt for Nick (and Ben H.), and admits that she could probably have dumped him differently. “Did you really think that picking out a ring and going through a proposal speech was the best way?” Nick asks her, fairly. “No, I don’t,” Kaitlyn admits. Kaitlyn strived for “good breakups” but there really is no such thing, says relationship expert Chris Harrison. Nick is all “I know there were no bad intentions” but wishes that there was “maybe more consideration” for what they had together. He wishes Kaitlyn the best.

Lastly, Kaitlyn and Shawn are reunited and yes yes they’re very much in love. After a plug for the premier of Bachelor in Paradise next Sunday, it’s a wrap.

Thanks for reading and joining me on this crazy Bachelorette “journey”!

xo

 

Bits & Pieces

Happy Friday!

How is it July 24 already?! I feel like Canada Day just happened! Wishing you all a wonderful weekend filled with sunshine, laughter and a patio beer (or two).

Here are some bits and pieces that made my week.

  • Have you seen Trainwreck yet? It’s so so so good. I’ve seen Amy Schumer do stand-up at Just for Laughs (and I’m obsessed with her show) and she’s fantastic in interviews but I had no expectations of her as an actress. Let me tell you: she’s phenomenal. I adored the crap out of this movie. I wouldn’t be surprised if she received a Golden Globe nomination for her performance. For realsies.
  • This Jurassic Park high heels parody is hilarious. At the 1:04 mark I actually choked on my own saliva.
  • A great article on parenting in the Netherlands. Reading this article I realized all the “Dutch-isms” that my father, who was born in Holland and moved to Canada at the age of 18, brought into my life. Particularly the food. And my mom now makes one hell of a stamppot.

xo

Terrarium Workshop at the Gladstone Hotel

A few weeks ago my good pal over at Golden Pouchcakes and I attended a terrarium workshop at the Gladstone Hotel. I’ve attended many events at The Gladstone: trivia nights, a 12 Beers of Christmas ugly sweater party and karaoke, and I’ve always had a blast. So when I saw that they were hosting a terrarium workshop as part of the hotel’s Get School’d Workshop Series, I asked Koshka if she’d join me. I’ll admit I was extra motivated to attend because I just got a window put in my bedroom (yup, you read that correctly – ah, Toronto apartment living), and I wanted to put something fun and plant-y and alive on my new windowsill.

With a $4 pint special in (my) hand, I grabbed my terrarium ‘bowl’ and was instructed to pick three plants (I selected two succulents and one air plant) as well as some stones and figurines (jungle animals and woodland creatures and tombstones, oh my!) and coloured moss and shells and other terrarium decorating accoutrements, if you will. We took our seats (the event was sold out and space was tight) and started to build our terrariums.

Hand to god you’ve never seen a group of more self-doubting, Type-A, typical Toronto perfectionists. We’d all moan and lament over the progress of our terrariums while oohing and aahing over our neighbour’s creation. Strangers turned to strangers with complete sincerity to ask: “Ok, be honest: should I have used the blue sand instead of the white sand?” or “How many shells are too many shells?” or “Is my moss to sand ratio all wrong?”

Around the room you could hear whispers of “I’ve totally fucked this up” and “I used too much/not enough moss/sand/stones/soil. I’ve ruined it!” The woman in front of me turned to her friend and pleaded for guidance – with more sincerity and seriousness than I thought possible: “This is super important: elephant or panther? Or…oh my god…..skull?”

I agonized for 10 minutes over whether to make my terrarium jungle, sahara or forest-themed. At one point I went a little dark with it, adding a tombstone and elk carcass. Then, after the addition of some pine cones I leaned towards a forest theme and never looked back. Luckily I had squirreled (pun intended) away a tony little deer figurine for just such a purpose.

I literally sweat.

I fell in love with my terrarium and moments later hated it again.

I put more thought and care into this terrarium than to learning how to drive.

Koshka’s took on a sci-fi Doctor Who theme (she had brought a few figurines in from home) and while initially she was disappointed with the result, the suggested addition of some dark purple (almost maroon) sand proved to be a game changer.

Friendships were forged.

Beer was consumed.

Extra plants were bartered for and moss was exchanged.

It was one of the weirdest things I’ve ever done.

And in the end, I brought home a super cool terrarium that adds a great visual punch to an all-white closet and windowsill. I love it.

collage1

Gathering my terrarium-building materials and yes that includes beer – I’m not crafty and I second-guessed almost every decision I made

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Coming together after the addition of my deer, mushroom plant, pine cones and stones

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Koshka’s Doctor Who-themed terrarium – Weeping Angels and Cybermen and cool-looking plants

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Welcome to my windowsill

 

The cost of the workshop was $60 and included the glass bowl, 3 plants and a selection of stones, soil, shells, sand, charcoal, moss, and figurines/decorative additions.

 

Recap: The Bachelorette – Men Tell All

Last night was the ‘Men Tell All’ special for Kaitlyn Bristowe’s season of the Bachelorette. This is when the season’s rejects gather to air their grievances, reveal lingering feelings for the Bachelor/Bachelorette and generally demonstrate why they didn’t make it past week three.

Here are some highlights from the show:

  • Chris Harrison announced season two of Bachelor in Paradise – it will (predictably) be a season containing lots of tears and also Claire is back (again!) and everyone loves Jared, apparently
  • Tanner really, really thinks he’s the spokesperson for the entire cast of men this season
  • Everyone still thinks Ian is an asshole but he regrets the things he said and gets down on one knee to beg for forgiveness from Kaitlyn, the other men, his ma and America – it’s a surprisingly sincere apology
  • Corey (no one cares!) thinks some of Kaitlyn’s decisions were in “bad taste” which elicits a ‘boo’ from the audience
  • My boyfriend Ben H. (who got sent home last week) won’t let anyone talk shit about Kaitlyn and is probably the next Bachelor
  • Apparently Kaitlyn’s actions as the Bachelorette have caused a “national controversy”
  • Clint evidently didn’t think Clint’s face was douchey enough so Clint grew a douchey beard and stopped washing his hair apparently and swears that despite the way his relationship with JJ was depicted throughout his time on the show he is 100% straight
  • JJ, for his part, claims the “villain shit” was tongue in cheek: remember their line “villain’s gotta vill?” yeah
  • Some of the men that no one ever cared about are still pissed that Kaitlyn let Nick come on the show – and now Nick is final two
  • Ben. Z is a “mountain of a man” and still hasn’t cried about his mom dying when he was a kid
  • Jared is pretty heartbroken (though seems to be doing just fine according to the sneak peak of Bachelor in Paradise) and thanks god he finally shaved his patchy beard at Chris Harrison’s urging
  • “Ladies across the country went nuts” for my boyfriend Ben H. because his stupid handsome face and overall sweetness, and he doesn’t seem to be overly-gutted about being dumped by Kaitlyn but he strikes me as pretty breezy and he has a good shot at being the next Bachelor based on the reaction of the audience
  • Kaitlyn has been getting a lot of nasty hate on the internet like tweets calling her a slut and a whore – why are people so disgusting???
  • The men all stand up to applaud Kaitlyn and show their support against the grossness of these internet comments – seriously, people are gross
  • Jared and Ben H. are super polite and cute chatting with Kaitlyn, and she admits it was hard to send them both home because gosh darn it they’re such nice guys
  • Kaitlyn politely (she is Canadian after all) calls Jonathan out on complaining about bringing Nick in mid-season by reminding him that he actually voted for Britt to be The Bachelorette – point!

Next Monday night is the finale.

Who will Kaitlyn choose: Shawn or Nick? Check back next Tuesday for my recap.

Recap: The Bachelorette – Week Nine (episode 10)

Stop reading now if you don’t want spoilers on week nine (episode ten) of The Bachelorette with Kaitlyn Bristowe (original air date: Monday, July 13, 2015).

Welcome back rose lovers! Jumping right back into the bro war between Shawn and Nick, Shawn is calling Nick “arrogant” and an “asshole” and basically being all ‘everyone hates you on this season, and everyone hated you on Andi’s season.’ Nick counters with his disgust over Shawn’s alleged bragging about being Eskimo brothers with some country singer.

But let’s focus on our Bachelorette for a bit while she’s focuses on my boyfriend Ben. After a great overnight with Nick, it’s time for Kaitlyn to spend the day and night in Galway with adorable Ben and their date kicks off with some picturesque horseback riding. They meet some feisty donkeys and make out in the fields. “Ben is a calming presence,” she gushes. They make out over a picnic in front of a castle. “Kaitlyn is an amazing person who I have fallen in love with,” Ben confesses in his voiceover. Later that evening, Ben (in a never ending parade of handsome sweaters) meets Kaitlyn at the same castle for dinner. He confesses to turning 26 on the show and Kaitlyn, at 30, cutely asks if he thinks of her as an older woman. “I’d be thrilled to be with you!” Age clearly ain’t nothing but a number for these two, because they are super cute and gushy reminiscing about their first meeting and their dates and Kaitlyn thinks he’s “so cute.” He really, really is. The overnight date card arrives, and recalls that Ben had  commented a few weeks back that their overnight would involve a “lot of talking.” Yawn. Ben tells Kaitlyn that he doesn’t want to stop looking at her or spending time with her and that he’s falling in love with her. So…that’s a yes then? “Best sleepover ever!” Ben predicts.

The next morning finds Ben and Kaitlyn with their arms around each other gazing out over the grounds. Ben departs (oh my god he’s wearing a backpack – I die), and Kaitlyn admits that she didn’t expect to be falling in love with Ben but she is.

The last of the overnight dates is with Shawn. Kaitlyn arrives bearing a gift: a pink golf shirt. They head out on the links with Kaitlyn looking ridiculously awesome in golf attire. Shawn is in to the golfing date, because it’s “something you can do until you’re old and gray” and he wants to be with Kaitlyn forever and ever y’all. As the winner of the golf game, Kaitlyn proposes a game of truth or dare and dares Shawn to streak naked across the golf course. As he de-pants, it’s revealed that Shawn is wearing long johns under his golf pants. “Hey, it’s a tough laundry day,” he explains. Sweet Fancy Moses that man is well built. His junk is blurred by the traditional Bachelor/Bachelorette ‘black box of bits hiding ‘while he runs around in the buff sporting a kicky pair of blue socks.

Source: OK Magazine

Source: OK Magazine

Over dinner, Kaitlyn and Shawn can’t stop smiling and laughing and their chemistry is off the charts. Kaitlyn addresses the Nick v Shawn “beef” and Shawn doesn’t hold back, basically calling Nick a complete assclown. Shawn then tells Kaitlyn that he “won’t lose any sleep” if she ends up with Nick, because that means they simply weren’t meant to be. Kaitlyn gets where he’s coming from, but conveys that she would prefer to continue the conversation “off-camera.” When the overnight date card arrives, they’re both pretty much ‘duh, of COURSE.’ Sadly that’s really all we get to see. The next shot is of Kaitlyn saying bye to Shawn the next morning and then him running into Nick who wants to chat and “respond to some of the accusations” that Shawn hurtled at him a few days prior. “If I hear my name come out of your mouth one more time to Kaitlyn it’s not going to be pretty,” he practically spits at Nick. He also calls Nick a “smooth-talker” who just “likes to hear himself talk.” They talk over each other for a bit and it ends with Shawn telling Nick to “get the fuck out of my place right now.”

Before the next rose ceremony, host Chris Harrison sits down for some therapy/real talk with our Bachelorette. It boils down to this: Shawn is kinda jealous but fun (and hot). Nick is a great combination of all the qualities she likes but maybe there’s some doubt as to whether they could be long-term. And sweetheart Ben is “so good-looking” and would “make a great husband.” Which two will make it to hometown dates? A very emotional Kaitlyn (she has to step away from the ceremony for a bit) says she has to follow her heart and hopes she’s not making a mistake. And we can practically see her heart given that she’s wearing the shit out of the lowest of low cut red dresses. With that said, she keeps Shawn and Nick and sends my boyfriend Ben home.

Leaving Nick and Shawn to hate each other in awkward silence, Kaitlyn walks Ben out and grips the crap out of his hand and admits that she’s frustrated that she’s not the woman for him. Ben wishes he could spend more time with Kaitlyn, and is super sweet telling her it “won’t be easy” not seeing her. OH MY GOD BEN YOU’RE JUST THE CUTEST. Yes, I’m shouting. His parting words to Kaitlyn are to tell her how great she looks and that he’ll miss her. In the limo of broken dreams, Ben says that him and Kaitlyn could have had something great, and that he’s been changed by meeting her. Changed like move to Toronto and attach your face to my face for about 50 years? Just a suggestion Ben. Meanwhile, Nick’s voice-over talks about once again being one of the final two men on The Bachelorette. Kaitlyn is still shaken up from having to say bye to Ben and she isn’t super thrilled to have to re-join Shawn and Nick who’s hatred for one another is palpable. She parts shortly thereafter, leaving Shawn and Nick to swirl their wine and seethe.

And then there were two.

From the beautiful landscapes of Ireland to…well…Utah. Still nice! Instead of going to their family homes, Shawn and Nick’s families will be brought to Utah to meet Kaitlyn.

Kaitlyn meets up with Nick first (he’s grown a beard and cut his hair – me likey!), and he tells her that from the time they first started talking (via text and then on the phone, before he joined the show) she was the best part of his day. Speaking of the last time Nick found himself in final two territory, he gets emotional telling Kaitlyn he has “no reservations” about them and admits to being “totally in love.”

Nick’s family is preparing for Bachelorette: 2.0. They don’t want to see Nick be “blindsided” again and have to go through another heartbreak. They actually cry talking about it, while Nick and Kaitlyn approach the door with flowers and dry heaving. So much dry heaving. Nick reveals that he’s final two after they sort of joke about thinking he was crazy for crashing the Bachelorette in New York. But look, ma, it worked out (at least up to this point). They dance the Carlton dance from Fresh Prince and yuk it up with the fam.

Nick’s sister Maria is the first to speak to Kaitlyn one-on-one. She asks the Bachelorette how her feelings for Nick are different for what she felt for Chris Soules. Kaitlyn admits that Nick isn’t at all who she thought he was but emphasizes that her feelings are strong. Maria finds Kaitlyn to be very “real” and “authentic”. Nick’s brothers share his affinity for mumble talking. Youngest sister Bella asks the real tough questions like “what is Vancouver like?” and “do you love Nick?” Kaitlyn tells Bella that Nick makes her happy and she feels all the good feelings. Bella says she can picture Kaitlyn as her sister-in-law. Precious! Chatting with Nick’s mom, Kaitlyn gushes about their shared “goofy” side and great conversations. Mom says that he must’ve seen something super special in Kaitlyn to put himself through the experience of being on the show a second time. She is also, understandably, very worried that Nick will once again end up broken-hearted. Nick chats with his mom and says he’s “99% confident” that Kaitlyn loves him. He tears up when saying that he really likes Kaitlyn. Nick’s mom is comforted by how she sees Kaitlyn look at him (and says she didn’t see the same with Andi!) and realizes that the next time she sees Nick he’ll either be on cloud nine or…not on cloud nine, I suppose. When Kaitlyn and Nick recap the day she says she feels even closer to him now that she’s met his family. Then there’s this exchange:

Nick: I love you

Kaitlyn: Promise?

Nick: With all my heart…we should make babies some day.

Then they make out more than anyone probably ever has in the history of Utah.

Next up is the Shawn fam jam. He’s excited to tell his possible future wife that he loves her and for her to be grilled by his sisters (and aunt and father, but his mother couldn’t make it). Kaitlyn is all “sisters love me” since she has one blood sister and six (!) step-sisters. Shawn tells the family that it’s down to the final two men, instead of the typical hometown final four. Kaitlyn reveals that she fell for Shawn from the moment he got out of the limo on night one, and everything is easy and light with the family. Lots of laughter, which is good because Shawn can’t be with someone who can’t roll with his kinsfolk. Kaitlyn charms Shawn’s sisters and both feel pretty strongly that Shawn and Kaitlyn will end up engaged. Dad is a bit of a skeptic but Shawn is adamant that he’s changed through this experience and ultimately he gets his dad’s blessing. When they’re alone again, Shawn tells Kaitlyn that he’s not just falling in love with her, he IS in love with her. Kaitlyn looks equally thrilled and terrified, and later admits that she’s gutted to have such strong feelings for both men. Shawn is mostly bummed that Kaitlyn didn’t tell him she loved him back. In her private on-camera interview, Kaitlyn breaks down because she’s feeling all the feelings.

Next week is Men Tell All! I can’t wait to see the JJ – Clint reunion!

Recap: The Bachelorette – Week Eight (episode 9)

Stop reading now if you don’t want spoilers on week eight (episode nine) of The Bachelorette with Kaitlyn Bristowe (original air date: Monday, July 6, 2015).

Welcome back rose lovers! It’s getting down to the wire and the action remains in Killarney, Ireland, where my boyfriend Ben. H receives the first solo date card of the week. After a short boat ride they play hide and seek and sit on a feelings bench to talk about what makes someone husband/wife material. Ben H. is a big fan of Kaitlyn’s hotness, telling her that when it comes to physical attraction “you kill that one, babe.” Cute. On her end, Kaitlyn is feeling all the feelings she should be feeling in this game called love. On the evening portion of their date, Kaitlyn and Ben H. warm up by a fireplace and drink Irish coffee and are generally just aw shucks adorable together. Time for a fireside confession: Ben H. fears he is unlovable. “I feel like I could, and I am, falling in love with you,” Kaitlyn reassures him, and Ben responds in kind. When the conversation turns to the pending overnight dates, Ben emphasizes that should he move forward to overnight dates, he won’t “focus” on the physical aspects of what the Fantasy Suite dates typically entail. Kaitlyn begins to suspect that Ben is a virgin, and asks him outright.

But first, the action turns to the bro-tel where a group date card arrives for Shawn, Joe and Nick. Joe has yet to get a one-on-one date with our Bachelorette, while Ben H. is on his second.

Back on their date, my boyfriend Ben H. confirms he is not a virgin, but looks forward to “talking all night.”

The next day, Kaitlyn and three members of her dwindling man harem embark on a scenic group date where. She is quickly pulled away by Shawn who is thinking a lot about where things ended with them last week (with Kaitlyn suggesting they ‘take a step back’). After talking about how weird it was that they didn’t kiss the last time they were together and then kissing because not kissing is stupid, Kaitlyn decides that now is the time to confess that she slept with Nick. Luckily, she is interrupted by her “intimate” partner in crime Nick. Shawn departs feeling like they are back on track.

Kaitlyn wants to get a read on Nick, mumcling “how do you feel about that?” in reference to their post-date coitus. “I feel good about it,” Nick enthuses, laughing. That seems to ease some of Kaitlyn’s anxiety. “You know I’m falling in love with you,” Nick mumbles back. Seriously these two need subtitles. Meanwhile, Joe and Shawn are chatting and Shawn’s asking Joe if he’s going to “get in there” and try to grab Kaitlyn for some along time and Joe points out that Shawn has Kaitlyn’s lipgloss on her moustache. A-W-K-W-A-R-D. Since Shawn has been pouty for weeks about Kaitlyn dating other dudes, clearly he does not view Joe as any sort of threat and therefore is all ‘go for it bro!’

Finally Joe gets some private time with our Bachelorette, where he confirms that he’s ready to get engaged. “I have a really great time with you,” he assures Kaitlyn. I honestly can’t remember really seeing them interact that much this season. After gushing that he could spend the next 60 years kissing her and be the happiest man on earth Joe says he’s in love with her. Oh god her face, Joe – LOOK AT HER FACE! Kaitlyn can barely make eye contact. Finally she decides to be “brutally honest,” telling Joe that she’s not on the same page as him and though she can’t “imagine saying bye” to him, that is precisely what she’s going to do. It’s as if she’s flicked Joe’s nice guy switch. He immediately shuts down and is all “cool”, “fine,” whatever. “It’s your decision,” he says. “No worries man.” “Can you give me a hug or something?” Kaitlyn pleads, and Joe responds “I guess.” Kaitlyn walks away and Joe stalks off into the woods. Perhaps he can go join Chris ‘Cupcake’ on that cliff of broken hearts.

Back on the world’s smallest bench, Nick and Shawn are speculating on why the conversation between Kaitlyn and Joe is taking so long, and both are pretty sure it’s because Joe’s getting the boot. Kaitlyn finally returns and admits that Joe told her that he was falling in love with her and she didn’t feel the same way so she ended it, but isn’t ready to hand out the date rose. She tells Nick that she’ll see him at the rose ceremony, but tells Shawn she’ll see him later. Is it finally sex confession time?

Nick returns to the bro-tel and chats with Jared and Ben H. about the date and the fact that Shawn is getting some private time with Kaitlyn. “That’s all I know,” he ends.

Shawn just keeps “falling harder and harder” for Kaitlyn, and is stoked to be able to continue on their date alone. “I’m just so happy to be here with you but I do have something on my mind…” Kaitlyn hedges. She tells Shawn that she just wants to be honest with him and she knows how important trust is to him and then tells Shawn that after her date with Nick they went back to her room and “it went too far.” “It’s hard for me to admit it but we had sex,” she adds. Shawn looks understandably gutted but keeps his composure, eventually asking “do you regret it?” “I feel guilt,” she admits. Shawn decides to regroup in the bathroom (for his sake I hope there’s whiskey in there) while Kaitlyn silently panics on the couch. This would be an amazing time for us to learn that this bathroom has an affable attendant named Liam who’s all about doling out life lessons and hand towels.

Nick is complaining about his lack of alone time with Kaitlyn this week to Jared and Nick. There’s fractions and shit. Seems a bit in poor taste to moan about this to your girlfriend’s other boyfriends while meanwhile she is risking losing her favourite dude by confessing that she touched you in your bathing suit area.

Shawn returns to the confession couch and thanks Kaitlyn for being open and honest with him. He admits to being upset about Kaitlyn sleeping with Nick but doesn’t want to make this about Nick. “I’m just going to man up and deal with it,” Shawn says, and tells Kaitlyn that he wants to be with her and “I think you’re worth it.” Impressive! Shawn’s face is made of handsome and his awesome abs are apparently made of (grudging) forgiveness. Once Shawn returns to the bro-tel, him and Nick have a confidence-off, both saying they feel pretty good about their chances of getting a rose this week.

As the men wait around for the COCKtail party to begin, Shawn reveals in his private interview that he’s got some questions for Kaitlyn and depending on the answers he receives he may need to walk away or – gasp! – turn down a rose. Chris Harrison arrives to blow that out of the water, announcing that Kaitlyn has made up her mind and they will be skipping straight to the rose ceremony.

Kaitlyn, in a disco ball dress, offers Shawn the first rose, but he does not immediately accept it and instead asks to speak to Kaitlyn alone. She looks about ready to puke. “I did a lot of thinking last night,” Shawn starts in. “I understand that there are other connections and other relationships and I don’t want to be naïve…I don’t understand why him,” Shawn questions Kaitlyn. Fair! Shawn is not a fan of Nick, and he doesn’t understand why Kaitlyn would potentially jeopardize their connection. “I am here to explore other relationships because at the end of this I will never explore another relationship,” Kaitlyn states. She also reiterates that conveying to Shawn that he was “it” a few weeks back was a mistake. “I’m not sitting here being ashamed of myself,” she says, adding “you need to let me figure things out for myself.” When asked if she’s still someone Shawn could trust, we don’t see Shawn’s response and instead we return to the rose ceremony where Shawn accepts Kaitlyn’s rose with an “absolutely!”

Phew!

The second rose of the night goes to Ben H., meaning Kaitlyn can look forward to their Fantasy Suite date of talking and talking and talking all night long.

It’s down to Nick and Jared, and ultimately Jared is left rose-less. Ah poop. Jared is sweet and funny, and I saw him making it to the final three over Ben H. A true gentleman, Jared offers Kaitlyn his coat when they walk outside to say their goodbyes. “I cannot believe the moments that we’ve shared,” Kaitlyn offers by way of explanation. “I’m really glad I met you,” he tells her, adding that she’ll always have a special place in his heart. “Just make sure you find the man of your dreams because you deserve it,” Jared says, making Kaitlyn cry. He boards the sad sack car to lonely town and has a breakdown of his own. Later, Kaitlyn cries some more over Jared’s general awesomeness. But, she says that she wasn’t feeling as strongly about their connection as the one she has with Nick, Shawn and (presumably) Ben.

Jared and his sculpted eyebrows for next Bachelor anyone?

The next day, Kaitlyn’s final three are packing for Cork. Shawn no longer calls Nick by name, referring to him instead as “the other guy.” Ben H. is so cute packing up his stuff that I don’t actually listen to a thing he has to say. Nick and his never-ending parade of attractive sweaters greet Kaitlyn with an exuberant kiss while her voiceover hopes that their connection isn’t just physical. Nick and Kaitlyn wander into a cathedral where he regales her with the cute story about how his parents were introduced in a church and engaged six months later, which comforts Kaitlyn that their connection is equally as “spiritual” as it is physical. Afterwards, and over whiskey (of course), they giggle and make out and talk about their first kisses. Their connection and “energy” is undeniable. They’re joined by some locals who talk about “the craic,” which means having a good time, and declare that the secret to a happy marriage is trust. Nick toasts the bar to having the “craic” and to happiness and love.

Back at the bro-tel, Shawn is all kinds of grossed out about “that other guy” spending time with Kaitlyn and generally just “getting in the way.”

Kaitlyn and Nick spend the evening portion of their date in jail. A converted jail that is decorated with blankets and a shit ton of lanterns. “I go out of my way to see the good in people,” Nick announces, but adds that he can’t respect a dude who brags about being Eskimo brothers with a country singer. Huh? Turns out Nick is referring to Shawn, who I guess banged some girl the same night as some country singer or something? Well, he is from Nashville so I’m sure country singers are in abundance there and perhaps this is a common occurrence. Weird that Nick would even bring it up when, until now, he’s done a fairly good job of at least pretending not to hate Shawn. It hasn’t gone unnoticed by Kaitlyn that Nick and Shawn only have bad things to say about one another, and she chalks it up to jealousy.

Nick apologizes for “showing up late” but adds that he’s not sorry for falling in love with Kaitlyn and taking a chance. “The only thing that’s keeping me breathing in this world is knowing why I’m here,” he says, making Kaitlyn super emotional. Kaitlyn presents Nick with the invitation to forego their individual rooms and stay together as a couple in the Fantasy Suite. Nick accepts, saying that he wants Kaitlyn to be the first thing he sees when he wakes up. She tricks him for a bit into thinking their Fantasy Suite is a jail cell. They eventually head to their real room for the evening, and Nick once again mumbles into his fingers about how falling in love with her has been super fun. They make out in bed and we return the next morning to find them in PJs talking about the great debate: bacon v. ham and there’s a shout out to Canadian bacon. Nick, shirtless and sporting a bunch of bracelets, sips coffee and talks about being allergic to dogs. Kaitlyn says that they spent the night talking and eating chocolate. They kiss goodbye and Nick takes off.

Shawn calls the front desk asking for Nick’s room number, and the last thing we see is Shawn showing up at Nick’s room saying he needs to get something off his chest. Shawn tells Nick he believes Nick has ulterior motives, and that if Kaitlyn saw in Nick what they see he would’ve been sent packing weeks ago. “You’re manipulative, you’re arrogant,” Shawn states, and Nick counters that he could say the same about him. Shawn calls Nick an asshole and says that it seems that Nick is just here to change his reputation that he earned while on Andi’s season. Whoa. We’ll have to see how the rest of that confrontation goes next week.

We visit with ousted Bachelorette hopeful Britt and her boyfriend (?) Brody, and he’s heading home to Nashville so they’re going to try long distance. Pretty sure they’re already broken up.

And that’s where we leave off for the week!