'The Bachelor': Jake makes a virgin sacrifice
Am I the only one who found tonight's episode of "The Bachelor: On the Wings of Love" excruciatingly boring? Perhaps it's because Jake has been spoiling us with surprise eliminations left and right, so tonight, when everything went as planned, it felt a little flat.Jake kicked off the episode by announcing that they were doing away with handing out roses on dates. Perhaps the producers realized that they've been putting a little too much power in Jake's hands. If he'd kept going at that rate, the show would be over by now. I'm curious as to how they're going to fill the episodes now that Jake has sped up the process by making extra eliminations, but perhaps the powers-that-be were more prepared for those moves than I'd thought.
The girls settled into their luxury hotel suite in San Francisco. and Tenley prepared for her first one-on-one date with Jake. I'd normally be jealous of their fancy accommodations, but they all must be so sick of one another's company. They've got no Internet, no TV, no cellphones. ... It seems like they just sit around on couches all day pretending not to hate one another. (Except when it comes to Vienna. Nobody pretends not to hate her.)
Tenley's date consists of a bus tour of San Francisco with a stop in Chinatown. "It's amazing!" Jake says. "You feel like you're in another country!" Really, Jake? Which one? (For the record, there are Chinatowns in 27 U.S. states and Washington, D.C. For a pilot, Jake really needs to get out more.) They drink tea, make each other fortune cookies with secret messages inside and generally seem to leak shiny happiness all over the place. It really seems like these two are cut from the same cloth. The exact same cloth. Unfortunately ... that doesn't really make for an interesting or dynamic couple.
Jake takes the opportunity to ask Tenley a little more about her emotional baggage: also known as the husband who cheated on her, also known as the only man she's ever been with. When he asked her what she'd do differently in a second marriage, Tenley said she regretted "not jumping off the couch or up from the desk to come meet him when he came home. That was one of my biggest mistakes." Forgive me, but if I were Tenley, I'd probably say, "Well, Jake, I regret marrying a cheater. I'm going to try not to do that this time around." It seems like she blames herself too much for her marriage's failure ... until she gets over that guilt, she's probably not wife material.
Read on to hear about Vienna and Gia's double-date power struggle and Corrie's bombshell, and for a red-carpet video of "Bachelor" host Chris Harrison addressing the Rozlyn scandal from earlier this season!
The next day, Vienna and Gia go on a double date. Beforehand, though, Jake sends over a huge trunk of clothes for them to try on. The trunk includes a bunch of beautiful, classy outfits: jackets, scarves, dresses galore! So why do both girls end up going on the date in jeans and tacky tops that look like they were left in the reject pile by the Forever 21 changing rooms?
"I'm going to be the third wheel," Gia predicts on their drive to a beautiful hillside castle ... and at first, she's right. Vienna definitely dominates the conversation, and Jake's attention, in the first part of the date. She complains about Ali's over-the-top reaction to Vienna receiving a rose last week. Normally, I think it's bad form to whine about the other girls during your date, but I think Ali really was out of line. When she tried to play it off like she wasn't talking about Vienna, I rolled my eyes so hard they nearly fell out of my head.
Recognizing that he was giving Gia the cold shoulder, Jake steals her away for some alone time in the creepy-looking wine cellar. Again, I roll my eyes dangerously hard as Gia complains about Jake sitting with other girls' legs over his lap. "I thought like maybe that was our thing," she says. Please. Jake isn't interesting enough to have a different "thing" for each of the women he's dating. "Is it OK to fall?" Gia asks him. "It's okay to fall," he replies. Yikes. Famous last words ...
Later, when Jake shows Gia and Vienna to their bedroom, Vienna gets greedy. She pours two glasses of wine and takes them to Jake's bedroom. "I'm lying in bed, not quite nekkid but almost nekkid," Jake says. "Vienna walks in with two glasses of wine. I had dirty thoughts."
Something about Jake gives me the impression of an innocent altar boy who has just learned what the birds and the bees are. Unfortunately for Vienna, Jake is too worried about what Gia might think to let things get past a G-rating. I was glad for that! It must have been awful for Gia to lie there, alone in the room, wondering about what was going on in Jake's room.Next up for a solo date is Corrie. Their date is a snoozefest. They paddle around in a boat, "The Notebook" style, but it fails to stir up any sparks. Later, they get after-hours access to the California Academy of Sciences museum. Ever since I read "The Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler" as a kid, I've dreamed of exploring a museum late at night, but their experience isn't quite so cool. They do, however, get to have dinner in the aquarium, where Jake asks Corrie if she's saving herself for marriage. He practically has to drag it out of her, but once he does, he takes the news like a gentleman. He is, after all, a good ol' Texas boy. After that, they finally get their long-awaited kiss.
Finally, it's Regina George's turn for a one-on-one. Ali puts on her prettiest summer dress and her heaviest winter boots to show Jake around her San Francisco neighborhood. I'd forgotten that she lived in San Fran! It must have been awful for her to have to sit around that hotel room with Vienna and company, knowing that her friends and her job and her life were just outside the doors.
After some uncomfortable PDA in a park, Jake finally asks Ali about her problem with Vienna ... sort of. "I feel like maybe there was something you needed to talk to me about at the rose ceremony," he says. I can't decide if he's being diplomatic or just cowering away from any kind of confrontation. Ali, caught off guard by the fact that he has noticed her childishness, wavers and promises to drop her preoccupation with Vienna and focus instead on Jake. Then they go running around in the waves, laughing and frolicking like they're filming a commercial for Sandals Vacation Resorts. At least her ugly boots are ruined.
Chris Harrison has been M.I.A. for the entire episode, but he shows up for the rose ceremony to do his thing. There aren't really any surprises here. Jake ends up sending Corrie home, since there is "something missing" between them. I bet I can guess what that something is.
This means that Gia, Tenley, Ali and Vienna will be bringing Jake home to meet the parents next week!
Did you miss Chris Harrison's looming presence in this week's episode? L.A. Times reporter Amy Kaufman caught up with Harrison on the red carpet before Sunday's Grammy Awards ceremony. Check out the video below to hear what he had to say about going easy on Rozlyn and keeping up with Jake's breakneck pace.
I can't wait for all the drama and to find out why there's apparently no rose ceremony next week. Who do you think will be the next to go? Who is your favorite contender at this point? Are you looking forward to Gia's family's awesome accents as much as I am? Let's dish in the comments below, and don't forget to come back next week!
-- Carina MacKenzie (catch up with me on Twitter @cadlymack), additional reporting by Amy Kaufman
Photos: Top, Gia and Vienna roughhouse at the castle. Bottom, Jake laughs in the wine cellar. Credit: ABC
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