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'The Bachelorette': Frank bails on Ali's Tahitian adventure

July 20, 2010 |  9:19 am
Before I begin tonight's recap of "The Bachelorette," I'd just like to thank ABC for completely spoiling this episode weeks ago. Why actually watch the episode when the entire season can fit into a 40-second promo?

At first, this whole thing felt incredibly fabricated and I kept thinking that Frank would come back After the Final Rose, announce that he made a mistake with Nicole, and -- surprise! -- become the next Bachelor. However, halfway through their couch conversation, I got the creepy feeling that we were witnessing something a little bit too real.

When Nicole said, "You need to come home," and Frank smiled at her happily, it became apparent that his feelings for his ex were honest. I was surprised, because he seemed completely obsessed with Ali, but now it looks like he was just overcompensating for his own doubts.

After the Rated R fiasco, I can't wait to see how this goes down. Oh, Frank.

Menwhile, in Tahiti… Is anyone else really sick and tired of helicopter rides? Can't they go somewhere via kayak or vespa or a Chris Harrison piggy-back ride?

Ali and Roberto visit an island that's apparently "in the shape of a heart." You know you're in love when you look at an irregular blob and see a heart shape, I guess.

To be honest, Ali's date with Roberto is pretty boring. They've got the physical chemistry that they've always had, but there doesn't seem to be a ton of substance between them. Still, this is a good week for physical chemistry, since it's time for the Fantasy Suites!

I notice that the cameras spent a lot more time actually in the suites during "The Bachelor" than they are on "The Bachelorette." This entire episode is very tame, considering seasons past. We do get to watch Ali seductively unbuttoning Roberto's shirt, though. Cool.

Chris' obsession with his family is so endearing to me. I loved how Ali fit in with them last week, and now I can just picture them growing old together and having a bunch of preppy kids and a dog and a big back yard in Cape Cod. (Don't worry, Ali, in my imaginary life for you, you're still allowed to work at Facebook.)

Speaking of their future together: Can we discuss Ali's terrible outfit during this date? That is what you wear when you've been together 20 years and the kid vomited on the first shirt you put on this morning and you're too tired for sex so you want your husband to ignore you when he gets home from work. That is not what you wear on the day you finally get to spend the night with your man.

I'm totally Team Chris, now that Frank turned out to be Team Nicole. Chris might not be the brightest bulb in the box (OK, he says "like" four times per sentence) but he seems so genuine and sweet and funny. I loved his panicked search for Chris Harrison when the envelope came out, and when he blurted out, "God, I love you," to Ali during their make-out sesh, I was done for.

I was so swoony over Chris that I almost forgot that we've still got Frank fallout to deal with. Frank does what any sane man who is about to destroy his credibility on national television does: He asks Chris Harrison for advice.

Look, I'm just saying, Chris Harrison's job is to drum up drama. If you need advice on matching your shirt to your eyes, he's your man. If you need advice on how to make a smooth getaway from a reality show? Not so much.

While Frank works out how to be a jerk in the least jerky way, Ali tells the cameras that she's "head over heels" for Frank. "I need this day," she says. Oh, you really, really don't, Ali.

I'll give Frank credit: He seems to be genuinely sorry for hurting Ali. Today, Ali told Zap2it, "I would not put him in the same category as Justin. I still have a lot of respect for Frank. A lot of warm feelings towards him."

This is the sort of thing that happens in relationships every day, but on a reality show schedule there's no room for doubt or spending time working things out.

My real surprise is just how completely wrecked Ali seems by it. I have been avoiding spoilers (except for those ABC shoves down our throats weekly), but I'm guessing that after Frank's big heartbreak, Ali isn't going to choose Chris or Roberto. She seemed like she had her heart set on Frank.

I hope Nicole is worth it, buddy!

What are your thoughts, Show Trackers? Are Frank and Rated R in the same category for you? Are you with me on Team Chris or is Roberto more your type? Are you hoping to never see another helicopter again? Do you know what a heart shape looks like?

Let me know in the comments below, and check back here next week after the reunion special.

--Carina MacKenzie

Photo Credit: ABC