The Bachelor Hometown Dates: The Dez Disaster

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The hometown date will make or break you.  That’s always been the case with few exceptions.  Without further ado, let’s discuss how each of the final four women did this week and where we go from here:


(1) AshLee’s Houston, Texas hometown date.

First – we’ve got to give it up for AshLee for styling herself in “Sean Lowe gear” by wearing a cute, fitted plaid button down shirt, tied at the mid-section and the first flat shoes of the season.  BRAVO to AshLee for not wearing heels to a picnic.  Sean will surely appreciate that.  She also brought out the plaid picnic blanket to match her plaid shirt and a cute little dog named Bailey to complete her outfit.  If they were selling Halloween outfits to look like the ideal woman for Sean, it would be exactly what AshLee wore.

So if I was retained to advise AshLee on how to improve her chances for getting the last rose from Sean, I’d tell her this: TAKE IT DOWN 10 NOTCHES.  Let’s recap.  They’ve known each other for about 7 weeks at this point. And she’s throwing out “L” bombs at every chance possible.  What is Sean to make of this?  If he’s feeling a little bit in love, she’s laying it on thick.  If he’s not really in love yet, she’s throwing some serious pressure at him.  It’s not like he’ll forget what you said, AshLee.  He gets it.  He also knows that you had a very tough time in the foster care system and as a result you’ve got some control issues.  But it’s like she’s cast Sean for the role of “HUSBAND / SOULMATE” and there’s nothing anyone can say or do to convince her otherwise. In fact, she’s not capable of speaking or thinking about anything else (except her adoption, perhaps).   I cringed when I read Sean’s blog today, as it said this about AshLee: “My only reservations were about AshLee’s intensity and her ability to let loose and have fun.”   YIKES.  On the positive side – he hasn’t given her the boot yet.  Which means he’s feeling something strong for her.  Plus she does seem extremely mature in comparison to the other girls.

As for AshLee’s family, I really liked her parents.  They seem like pretty generous and loving people to take in numerous foster kids over the years (I think they said SIXTEEN foster kids altogether???).  I also liked that AshLee’s father had a similar background to Sean’s father and grandfather (all pastors and reverends).  Religious beliefs play a strong hand in Sean’s decision even if we don’t see much discussion on it during the episodes. As for the actual date – a few comments:

(1) AshLee’s parents have a 3 car garage home.  Call me judgemental but could that mean they are semi-well off?

(2) How awkward did Sean feel when AshLee was telling her parents about their dates?  He was squirming in his seat.

(3) I loved how Sean handled all of the parents on this episode, particularly when asked if he was in love with the girls.  Notice how he never once said, “Yes, I am in love…”  Other Bachelors have fallen into this trap before. They don’t know what to say, because it kind of doesn’t make sense to ask permission to marry a girl unless you’re in love with them, right?  So they falsely say they are in love and then later we are all shocked when The Bachelor doesn’t choose that person.  So instead, Sean says, “love is on the horizon” and “would you be ok with me proposing to your daughter if I felt it was right?”  Oh man – did he come up with this stuff on his own or was he coached? This is pure gold falling out of his mouth.

(4) I did love hearing Bruce tell Sean the story of the first time he met AshLee. We’ve now heard this story from both AshLee and her dad’s perspective. I’m guessing Sean might have a version of it by the end of the show too.

I will end this AshLee segment by listing the most INTENSE and CRINGE WORTHY love lines that AshLee said to Sean.  I kept thinking that these lines were becoming a turn off to Sean, but at least once, Sean did say in response to all these love dovey lines: “You should be pretty confident in what we have.”  Hmmmm – ok, so he does like her, and we are left t o think that she just needs to calm down a bit:

•           “You amaze me every time” (this was said when AshLee explained to Sean that his response about her having been divorced as a teenager – ”You’re not broken” was similar to what her father might have said).  On a scale from 1-10, this is about a 4 are on the “eek” scale, but it gets worse.

•           “You’re so handsome.  I love looking at you.”   (EEEK. What guy wants to keep hearing this?  Oh wait, I gues all guys like hearing this, but it’s like she doesn’t see him as a human being any longer – just a person on a pedestal).

•           “I’m madly, deeply in love with him.”  (EEEEK).

•           “You’re the best” (followed by looking deep into Sean’s eyes and hugging him, followed by one more, “I love you”).  At least she won’t have any regrets about holding back.

(2) Catherine’s Date – Seattle, WA

I’m still wondering how Catherine made it this far and was chosen over Lesley, but what can you do?  These two have had the least amount of time together going into the hometown dates, so not sure it’s even possible for Catherine to catch up.  The biggest thing coming out of Catherine’s hometown date with Sean was the VERY STRONG contrast between his time with Catherine and his time with AshLee.  With Catherine it’s about laughing, having fun and taking things lightly.  Their time in the Pike fish market is the perfect example of this.  They were laughing and holding hands the whole time.  She wasn’t telling him how much she loved him the whole time.  My favorite Catherine moment of the episode was watching her dance in front of the banjo player while they were walking around Seattle.  Sean joined in too and they just seemed to have a very easy, natural chemistry between them.

Finally, we get a reference to Catherine being Filipino as she teaches Sean how to greet an elder in her culture.  It was interesting to get a warning from Catherine about her mother being intimidating.  Still, Sean tried his best to blend in. I loved that he put on an apron and started helping with the food.  Of course we can’t go 15 minutes without Sean showing off his muscles, so the push-up scene was unavoidable.  Catherine’s sisters are BEAUTIFUL.  Lookswise, they could out-match the Kardashians any day.  Should we starting calling her “K”atherine? Cathernie and her sisters are just naturally beautiful ladies who obviously care a lot about each other.  But unlike the Kardashians, Catherine’s sister are extremely down to earth, smart and practical.  It was nice to see Catherine’s family stepping in and challenging her in whether the relationship with Sean was more than “fun and goofy.”   But I was surprised at the “warnings” the sisters gave Sean about Catherine.  We learned some interesting things here: Catherine is moody.  She can be overly focused.  She wants to spend time in New York developing her career (this was something Sean mentioned in his blog, as he had not been aware of this).   It was also interesting that Sean did not receive Catherine’s mom’s blessing to propose.   So we leave Catherine’s hometown visits with a lot of questions marks.  They probably have the best chemistry of all the remaining girls – but it doesn’t seem like that will translate very well in the real world.  Not looking too good for Catherine at this point.

(3) Lindsay’s Date – Fort Leonard Wood, MO

What the heck is a 2 Star General in the US Army?  I know this is a very important person, but sad to say, I’m clueless about this stuff, so I went to the Internet. Here’s what Wikipedia had to say:

In the United States Army, United States Marine Corps, and United States Air Force, major general is a two-stargeneral-officer rank, with the pay grade of O-8. Major general ranks above brigadier general and below lieutenant general. Major general is equivalent to the rank of rear admiral in the other uniformed services, and is the highest permanent rank during peacetime in the uniformed services. (The higher ranks are temporary ranks linked to specific positions, although virtually all officers who have been promoted to those ranks are approved to retire at their highest earned rank.)

I still kind of don’t get it, but suffice it to say, it’s a very senior person in the army worthy of a lot of respect and praise.  And we should be extremely intimidated if meeting this person to seek permission to propose to this person’s daughter.   I liked how nervous Sean was trying to figure how to address him.  Lindsay’s current hometown seems like a great small town America type place which I see Sean enjoying.  The whole “dress Sean up like an army doll and scream commands at him like – do push-ups and kiss me” was pretty cheesy.  Some comments on Lindsay’s date:

•           When asked directly if he is falling in love with Lindsay, Sean said that he “Hopes it comes.”  Ok, so no love there either at the moment.

•           How awesome did those cupcakes look that they were eating on their date?

•           I loved Lindsay’s mom.  Even more so that she appreciated Sean explaining his current feelings for Lindsay and his intentions for their future.  She appreciated his honesty and made him feel at ease.

•           Despite the numerous guns hanging on the wall of her parents’ home, Lindsay’s dad seemed pretty down to earth.

Overall, I think Lindsay’s date went the best and Sean felt the most comfortable with her family.  If only he could ensure that Lindsay would not wear as much make-up as she had on this week’s episode.

(4) Last, but not least – Desiree’s hometown date in Los Angeles, CA

Another BRAVO to Desiree for greeting Sean in workout gear, ready for a hike.  That’s “so Sean” and seemed like an actual real date that they’d enjoy doing in the real world.  Also, I want to know what shampoo Dez uses because her hair always looks so healthy and shiny.  At night, we’re taken back to Dez’s home where we see she’s an artist of sorts (which may explain why he took her to an art show on their first date).  Some of you have pointed out that there were all sorts of degrees hanging on her wall.  Yes, we have no idea what those are (maybe they’re art??) since we know she’s a bridal consultant.  Perhaps she’s got a doctorate in bridal consulting

Let’s break down the 2 key things that happen on this date: (1) fake actor shows up confessing love for Dez.  Nobody is buying this.  Not The Husband, not you, not anyone.  And we’re pissed that clips of this scene were substituted for Sean’s interaction with Dez’s brother.  They are trying to manipulate us once again and we don’t like it.  We learn this is a prank, but nobody’s amused.  Not even Sean, who was riled up and ready to deck the guy.

Part 2 of the Dez Disastrous Hometown Visit – her brother.  Now Chris Harrison reveals in his blog this week – an interesting interaction between Sean and the brother that we did not get to see.  Apparently before they had their heated discussion, the brother and Sean initially had a very pleasant conversation and the brother indicated his support of their relationship.  They didn’t air this footage because they found it extremely confusing in contrast to the footage they did show us.  So not only is Dez’s brother rude, he’s a tad schizo.   Or maybe he was just trying to make a name for himself on international TV as the guy who busted the Bachelor’s balls.  His sister is getting all the attention, why shouldn’t get his 15 minutes?  I wish we could have kept a pulseometer on Sean during his conversation with the brother.  When the words “playboy” and “no reciprocation” came out, I thought Sean was going to lose it.  But being the awesome Bachelor that he is, Sean kept his cool.  Amazingly so.  How awesome it would have been, however, to see a full out brawl on TV.

The dates are over and Sean has a big decision to make between Dez and Catherine.  Who is he “more crazy” about.  And can he really be “crazy” about 4 women at the same time?  Chris Harrion’s advice was pretty useless. He’s basically like – yeah, buddy, don’t make a decision until you know for sure.  Gee, thanks, Chris.  Dez pleads with Sean to look past her brother’s mean remarks but he can’t shake the fact this could potentially be his brother-in-law.  Thousands of miles of separation between LA and Texas is apparently not big enough of a distance to make him forget that fact.  I think we all feel pretty bad for Dez, whether we like her or not, because clearly it’s the brother that’s the deciding factor for Sean.  Had the brother gotten stuck in traffic and missed the dinner, I think there’s a pretty good chance that Dez would have made it to Thailand.

Now that we’re down to 3 ladies, I’m pretty confused.  If Sean is remotely interested in AshLee, they’d probably have the best shot at a lasting relationship because as the whole world knows – she really loves that guy.  Plus their families are similar, so he’d get along well with hers.  Lindsay could also be a good match for Sean, but not sure I see it lasting long term.  Which really means that I see him potentially having regrets long term in any of his choices – unless he suddenly decides to give Lesley another shot.  I don’t know – I need to see something more, some real big spark from Sean that tells me he’s head over heels for one of these ladies. The fact that he can’t distinguish one over another is not a really great sign for me.

What do you think?  Do you have a favorite?  Til next time, please “Like” my Facebook page at http://facebook.com/OfficeStace and “Follow” me on Twitter http://twitter.com/OfficeStace

PS  Does anyone miss Tierra?


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Stacey Becker is a writer disguised as a full time, corporate lawyer at a global financial institution living in New York City. She created and has run her own blog on ABC's reality TV series, The Bachelor / The Bachelorette for the past several years. Stacey was interviewed as an expert blogger by ABC's 20/20 in an on-air TV segment focusing on the phenomenon of the show. She is currently the "Couch Critic" for Radio & TV Business Report for The Bachelor / Bachelorette. A published author since the age of 15, her non-fiction story, “Softball People,” was published in Chicken Soup for the Father’s Soul (2001) and republished in Chicken Soup for the Dad’s and Daughter’s Soul (2008). Her current blog, which can be found at www.OfficeStace.com features all of her Bachelor writing and documents her day to day adventures. Stacey's email is [email protected] and her Twitter handle is: @OfficeStace.