Before I even get into last night’s episode of The Bentleyette, let me just say that I’m confused. When I heard (and saw) that Ashley was on Jimmy Kimmel last week following the horrifically embarrassing episode in which Bentley leaves her with a dot dot dot and a dream, it just didn’t make sense. Isn’t everything supposed to be kept well under wraps until the season ends? Now that we’ve seen Ashley’s reaction to Bentley’s behaviour mid-season, and now that we know that he is coming back, I sort of feel like things have been ruined for me a bit. On the one hand, no one could be that stupid – to watch her heart get splattered all over her Malibu dreamhouse, go through the pain of being judged by a cold, faceless audience (you/me/us) and then at the end of the season face said audience again proclaiming she is in fact, Cozy’s new baby mama. But then again this is Ashley. Is it POSSIBLE, that she IS with Bentley now? Even despite how he has treated her? The season is clearly over if they are allowing her to do interviews already, so we can assume that she either a) has a boyfriend (presumably from the show) or b) she is single again, with only floss and whitening toothpaste to fill her mouth with love going forward. And what is the premise of him coming back? Does he pretend to have rethought things and realize he’s in love with her? Or is it just that he forgot to use some of his best lines and wanted to make sure to get them all in. Or, are he (and the producers, and Chris Harrison) just THAT mean and they are bringing him back solely for ratings, because let’s be honest – this season isn’t exactly a winner.
Ok, I’m getting ahead of myself. Back to last night.
The episode started off with a cold harsh reminder of last week’s emotionally traumatizing (read: amazingly entertaining) event. But just as I was reliving that ‘dot dot do is better than a period’ line again, my enjoyment came to a screeching halt as my eyes were terrorized by the living room. It is official – the palate of choice in this house is orange and forest green. It’s disgusting and I’m just plain sick of it.
When Chris announces Thailand, high fives go flying around the house – funny how in past seasons, the travelling is usually saved for the final four or three. This time around, it’s like – “hey – this season is brutal! Might as well give these viewers some eye candy and take the contestants somewhere nice to look at. The weather in Thailand totally sucks right now so we can get a break on flights – off we go team!” And I think it’s pretty safe to say that normalcy is not in the cards for any of these dates or circumstances in which ‘love’ typically unfolds on this show, so why start now? The only real moment of the episode was when Ashley and Constantin’s date got rained out and you could actually see her lower lip quivering in fear as she tried to figure out what they would do for the rest of the day.
Looks like the budget’s getting cut now too, since as soon as she got there, Ashley has to plan her own dates. Can you imagine what this tour guide (who by the way I’m pretty sure was trying to score her own one-on-one date with Ashley) was thinking? Probably something along the lines of ‘American slut!” Ashley shows up wearing a grossly inappropriate outfit (we get it, your body is cute) and proclaims, “I want to plan some dates with twelve guys – and they’re hot!”
I actually thought at one point as they flew over to Thailand you could make out Bentley’s silhouette in the clouds. That’s how much Bentley there was in this episode. Every time Ashley seemed to be doing okay, it was like a Turret’s tick and she’d go back to him in her thoughts. Not even Nick’s flaming sunburn could distract her.
Still, it’s great to be in Thailand, no? The colours, the landscape, the mystique, the fact that the guys are now living in a house with the soothing water tones of greens, blues and even cream, instead of the hideousness from where they came.
As I said, Constantin’s date with Ashley presented one of the few non-scripted moments, probably in Bachelor history, where they were forced to – gasp! – make their own plans. And just as I expected, they chose to immerse themselves in local culture as they went about the worst hair day in Thai history. I was so proud to see Ashley really embracing the people and culture of Thailand, as she visited a gift shop selling essentially, bobblehead Buddhas and trying on hats. And nothing can describe the stunning buildings and vivid colourful architecture quite like Ashley’s favourite word – ‘cute’. You could really get a sense of being there from her descriptive narration.
My favourite part of the date had to be when they decided if all else fails, talk to the locals – a concept which really seems to intrigue her – and they approached Charlie Sheen’s long lost uncle, who gave them the sage advice that it’s not about winning – of course they had to find the only Thai person whose voice sounds exactly like Fran Drescher – that was pleasant.
I think Constantin really said it best, as they later discussed the fun of their date, when he fondly recounted the success of the day and what it meant to him by saying “ I’m just gonna take you downtown, and wear orange shorts.” Um…okay? Great? The shorts were…fun? I’m sure he was just as surprised as the rest of us to hear Ashley remark how relieved she was to hear that he had fun, because she’s insecure. Really, Ashley? You? Never!
Back at the house, it was great to hear the inner thoughts of some of the guys, as Ben, JP and Blake sat together with two out of three of them ferociously picking their toes the whole time. Hot. I predict at some point, JP truly won’t be able to handle the pressure of watching the other guys with Ashley and will snap and go postal on everyone.
On group date day, Ashley bounced into the date looking absolutely ridiculous – what are you, Jessie from Toy Story? Nothin’ like a feel good story angle to boost ratings so of course by the end of the date, the four-nine-one theory I mentioned in an earlier post was in full effect. Even Ben was getting cuter in his little white newborn cap. Really nice to see Ashley getting into the spirit of things by not lifting a finger and whining as the guys didn’t flirt with her enough as they were trying to make a better life for the kids. What selfish boys. The only one who seemed to have lots to say was the self-proclaimed project manager Ryan – this is not The Apprentice, buddy. Simmer down.
Of course when the orphans came out to see what the guys had done for them, I had a good cry. It was almost as moving as when Brad and Chris Harrison had their one-on-one date at that South African school singing ‘this is the way we wash out hands, wash our hands, wash our hands…”
After a hard day’s work, it’s time to party, so Ashley donned her fanciest fishing net (a treasure from her date with Constantin, perhaps?) Though we didn’t get to see Ashley’s one-on-one time with all the guys (to be honest, I don’t think William has said one word since the roast), it’s nice to see her suddenly aware that there are other guys there besides Bentley.
It’s pretty obvious that she has serious chemistry with JP judging by the display of tongue that took up most of my screen, but still, all I could think about as they sat awkwardly on the wet ground, was how uncomfortable she must be getting gravel marks in her ass from wearing that bikini bottom. Though I cringe at pretty much every kiss on every season of this show, it’s still pretty obvious that JP is a way better kisser, so far, than any of the other guys there.
One of my favourite parts of the night had to be when Ashley was just about to give out her rose, and Ryan literally did a forward lunge to stop her. When he took her aside, all he had to say was ‘I’m really looking forward to moving forward with you.” Really? Was that really worth having Lucas yell ‘Goober!!!” after you? And Lucas: goober? Really? Was it just me or were some of the guys yelling out ‘Free Bird’? Usually the comments are vague when the bachelors/bachelorettes are handing out their roses, but this time around, Ashley basically admitted that something real is developing between her and Ben – that had to hurt for JP, who still had Ashley’s saliva in his mouth.
My call for Ames, at the beginning of his date, was similar to Ashley’s. I thought he would have nothing to say and she would basically set him drifting off rose-less, in a kayak, never to be heard from again. I think we were all pretty surprised. Mostly about his personality but partially because he was not wearing shoes on his date (WTF?). When he ran to Ashley at the beginning like the queen running to a half-price crumpet sale, I’m thinking, isn’t this guy a tri-athlete? I still can’t put my finger on what it is about Ames that irks me, but I must not be the only one, since he’s still single. Clearly he is what society would deem a good looking guy, though I am convinced he may be partially acrylic. He’s nice, sweet, successful – obviously has a nice amount of disposable income if he can jet off to Thailand for a cooking course, great body…funny? Debatable…depends on your standards. What is it? Not sure if anything will happen between them, but it certainly opened her eyes to the possibility that maybe this season was not solely designed to bring her and Bentley together. As they drifted through the gorgeous caves, lost in thought, while the Vaj-cam caught every move below Ashley’s skirt, his introspection pleasantly surprised me, but at the same time was a bit off-putting. Only time will tell with this one, I think.
The night of the cocktail party, I’ve gotta hand it to Blake for being honest with Ryan – not something you see very often on this show. It has to hurt when someone flat out tells you that you are basically disliked by the majority of your roommates, and though they can’t put their finger on it, it’s pretty much confirmed that you annoy the shit out of everyone. Yet, even when he’s being insulted, he’s still smiling. It sorta reminded me of Jake – on Jillian’s season though, before we knew he was a wife beater, not his own season.
I’m surprised that Ashley didn’t give West more of a chance. I don’t know why she has so much trouble believing what people tell her when it’s the truth, whether it’s about her or themselves but she’ll soak up any lie from anyone off the street. I hope the fact that the first time he put himself out there since his wife’s death he got booted on national TV doesn’t tarnish his hope for love in the future. I’m totally rooting for him – maybe he’ll be the next Bachelor. How awkward that he has to stand there and wait for the car while Ashley stands with her back to him pouting.
Once again, classic editing, makes us salivate for next week’s episode. Can’t WAIT until Big B gets back and stirs shit up. Looks like it’s gonna be a good one. And I really need a good one. I’m running out of material!