He picked Lauren.
Can I be done now? Great thanks.
Fine. Where to begin. Oh yeah. He picked Lauren. Which for me means the best possible show outcome – JoJo and not Caitlin gets to be The Bachelorette.
I don’t know about you guys, but the last few finales have in my opinion, been the most boring episodes of the season, every season. I mean really, what can top Juan Pablo’s finale, with his own family basically advising both girls to run for the hills and wrapping up with Claire calling him a terrible father and what’s-her-name (the one he picked) trying to fight back tears and convince herself she’s actually in a relationship on After the Final Rose.
At the very least this week, I was hoping for some sort of scene with JoJo’s (presumably heavily sedated) mom when we saw they had been flown in (hopefully she found time over her visit to shop around for some fresh plastic surgery talent while in LA), or even some sort of back alley brawl once JoJo got the boot from the brothers. But instead, we get both families waiting for the surprise wedding we knew would never take place, a pastor with nothing to do but stand around looking like a child predator every time the camera showed him, and the usual – Ben being absolutely, entirely, unequivocally, Ben.
Should we back up? At this point, I’m sure you’re all way over this season, as am I, but gotta go out right, right? Right.
So right. We’re in Jamaica and everyone has a lot of thinking to do. Ben needs to figure out how he can propose to someone wholeheartedly while admitting that he loves someone else. Lauren needs to figure out how to wear those jean shorts once again, while maintaining the full integrity of her labia (I am seriously worried for her vagina) and JoJo needs to figure out the secret to jumping ten feet off a cliff in a bikini and somehow miraculously not losing her top. Like I said, everyone – deep in thought.
The first meet-the-parents-date goes to Lauren, who arrives with nary an accessory on her body, per usual and a vase filled with what are clearly artificially coloured flowers, judging by the deep crimson of the water. Just for the record, unless you are seven and choosing blue flowers for mommy because it’s your favourite colour, at no point is it ok to give a woman artificially coloured flowers. Just ew.
So Lauren hands off the flowers and meets Ben’s reasonably skeptical parents. Sure they like her, but they don’t luuuuurve her. There isn’t anything jumping out at them like, yep! This is our girl! Ben’s mom tests the waters by basically alluding to the fact that Ben is an emotional basketcase to see how Lauren responds and Lauren sheds an appropriate amount of tears to convince mom and dad that she could very well be the one.
The next day, Ben is beyond excited to see JoJo and it shows. JoJo enters the scene looking adorable for a change, and basically convinces me to not totally scoff at the thought of a boob job. Don’t get me wrong, my boobs have pretty much rocked since having kids (contrary to the experience of many of my now concave friends), but why would you not want your boobs to look perfect in every shirt, no matter what, forever and ever without a bra? Why? She could wear a macramé as a top and still pull it off.
JoJo enters the scene and you can literally see Ben’s mom’s eyes well up with tears almost instantly. After a brief embarrassing moment where Ben admits that the helicopter wasn’t the only thing up in the air on their first one-on-one, JoJo has some alone time with Ben’s mom, which further solidified her understanding of Ben. Before his mom even has to say anything, JoJo highlights many of the things Lauren didn’t seem to be aware of about Ben, and reaffirmed her feelings of safety, comfort and friendship that draw her and Ben to each other. You could see the concern wiping off of his mom’s face as she slowly drank the Bachelor Kool Aid.
Despite warm fuzzies flying all around over both dates, when all is said and done his parents offer very little help and Ben is totally freaking out. Clock’s ticking, buddy.
Really, what more is there to say? Ben did seem the hottest and most masculine on both of their final dates that he has appeared all season – even his voice deepened. Both of their final dates were fraught with nerves, stress, tears, confusion, love, fear, and tongue. One was on a yacht, and one was in a lagoon. Both included untouched food, parts exposed on couches and a speech from Ben that was meant to be sincere and grateful for the gifts of friendship and love bestowed upon him by each girl, but instead came out like an ‘it was an honour just being nominated’ speech, which cloaked the ladies in thick layers of paranoia, raging cases of nervous diarrhea and frankly, a bit of a slap-in-the-face as he revealed to each that he basically also loves the other one.
The next day, Ben has to go about the task of choosing a ring for his future fiancée, which is clearly too much for him to handle and it’s no surprise, since usually when a guy is about to propose to a woman, he knows which woman he is going to propose to. I can only imagine the awkwardness on Neal’s part. There are only four C’s that Neal knows of, Ben; colour, cut, carat and clarity. Crapshoot is not one of the C’s of choosing a diamond and it certainly isn’t one of the C’s of choosing a friggin’ wife!
And yet, like the gleaming, spray-tanned manicured man that he is, Neal Lane does what even Chris Harrison couldn’t and helps bring Ben to the decision of who the lucky girl will be. I could have stopped watching right then and there because that ring, slightly boring and conservative, had Lauren written all over it. There was no doubt in my mind she was his pick once he made that choice.
So now it’s time to get ready, which is normally when the most dramatic evening-wear is saved for. Usually there is some sort of common theme with the finale dresses (apparently the only ones of the season provided for the show), like those velvet Christmas tree skirts worn by Becca and Whitney for Prince Farming, or those terrifying capes worn by Courtney and Lindzi on Ben Flajnick’s season.
This time around, JoJo got a bedazzled pageant dress that probably weighed 30 pounds, despite its lack of material in the front and back so as to once again demonstrate the wondrous capabilities of a boob job and Lauren got a conservative, non-revealing, not too exciting, but figure flattering dress. It could have been kicked up a notch with jewelry, but it’s Lauren we’re talking about. I don’t even think she wore studs.
This is where my heart just broke for JoJo and really, I don’t know why these ladies (or any final two contestants for that matter) haven’t learned yet to just shut the fuck up and let The Bachelor or Bachelorette talk. Why embarrass yourself by speaking first? You just look more pathetic when you’re not the one chosen. If you’re the one with the ring, then pledge your undying love. Until then, keep it zipped and let the chips fall where they may, no?
Ben literally looked like he was holding back vomit when talking to JoJo and I could barely make out what the poor girl was saying as she realized she was being let go.
Once she was gone and the infamous phone scene played out which turned out to be Ben calling Lauren’s dad for his blessing (fine, adorable), I pretty much stopped paying attention, other than noticing her mustache sweat and thinking his desire to ‘wake up and kiss her on the face’ was slightly weird. Seriously, I barely know what they said to each other in those final moments, but whatever, he proposed and she said yes. Stellar blogging, right?
Fast forward to After the Final Rose and Chris Harrison is bouncing around in his seat like he’s off his meds just itching to stir the pot for the sake of good TV. Are you going to get married here, Ben? Are you still partially in love with JoJo, Ben? Give me something I can work with!
JoJo comes out looking pretty amazing , claiming she could totally see the love between Ben and Lauren all along and is totally okay with it, when really, she’s thinking ‘Bye Felicia!’ cuz she’s got a boatload of hotties waiting for her on the upcoming season of The Bachelorette. That’s certainly one way to get over it.
At the end of the day, other than the most awkward Jimmy Kimmel intervention ever (not funny at all and reminiscent of a social worker asking a child to re-enact abuse), this had to be one of the most heartfelt ATFR episodes to-date. And how can it not be with Ben’s ode to Bachelor Nation, family photo opp and extra proposal just for good measure. I do wish them all the happiness in the world, and maybe Lauren was the right choice for Ben in the end, but just like with any season (except maybe Andi and Josh – tear), I’m already over it. You?
Since Bachelor in Paradise is way too much to blog about (seriously, you try it), looks like my work is done here for now.
I may take the next couple of months to venture off the Bachelor path and see how that goes, since I’d love to keep writing and frankly, I’m not really a one trick pony kinda girl. No promises that it’ll actually happen (that would mean I have some discipline!) or that whatever I decide to write next may actually interest each and every one of you, but who knows, maybe you’ll be hearing more from me and maybe you’ll like it. Any requests?
Thanks for reading and sharing and liking and all that good stuff thus far – it means a lot to me.
Till next time! xo