'The Bachelor': Nicki, Kacie wonder if Ben is happy with final pick
Throughout this season of "The Bachelor," plenty of women tried to warn Ben Flajnik about one of the women on the show, the seemingly cruel-hearted Courtney.
Courtney, a model who is now one of the final two vying for Ben's affections, was mean to women all season long. She rubbed roses and date cards in the ladies' faces and used sex to get ahead when she snuck out one night to go skinny-dipping with Ben.
Numerous girls attempted to talk to Ben about Courtney's facade, but he typically dismissed their concerns. At the recent taping of the "Women Tell All" episode -- which airs Monday night -- many of the finalists told me they were worried Ben will ultimately end up with Courtney, and that he won't be happy as a result.
"I don't know how he feels and if he's happy or not," said Kacie, who actually flew all the way to Switzerland during last week's episode to again reiterate her feelings about Courtney to Ben. "I think initially he would have been happy with her not knowing [about how she treated the other women], but I think watching this [show] it's very hard to move past a lot of the things you've seen about somebody and hear the opinions that people have and look past those."
Once Kacie began talking, I had to ask: How could she possibly think that returning to the show after getting the boot would be a good idea?
Her explanation? Once she got back to Tennessee, she was devastated. She couldn't understand why Ben had sent her home. Normally after a break-up, she'd call or text her ex to get closure. But she obviously wasn't able to do that with Ben -- so she reached out to one of the show's producers via email.
"I wrote a producer with a random question that probably didn't make sense and he said, 'Well, what do you want to do?' " she recalled. "So it was more of a collaborative thing. Just, 'Do you want to go back and ask [Ben what happened]?' And after a day, I was like, 'Yeah, I do want answers.' "
Meanwhile, Nicki -- who was the third runner-up -- also had doubts about Courtney. As many of you have probably heard by now, the model shows up in an effort to defend herself during the Women Tell All event, and she comes across as genuinely apologetic for her actions. She cries a lot and admits she was horrible to most of the women on the show.
Shortly after Courtney's tearful appearance, Nicki told me she was still questioning Courtney's true intentions.
"Do I want to believe that she's genuine and everything she was saying was sincere? Yeah. I'm just having a hard time jumping on board right away," she said. "The Ben that I know would not go and seek out a model. That has no importance to him. I genuinely wanted to believe that he was in this to find somebody who he could click with and respected and wanted to love and vice-versa. And I guess he saw glimpses of that with her, regardless of her profession. But did she play that up and her sexuality and stuff and did that get her ahead in the game? Yeah. What can you do when you're given that? It's on a platter in front of your face."
For more behind-the-scenes details from the "Women Tell All" taping, check back here after tonight's episode airs.
-- Amy Kaufman
Photo: Ben Flajnik contemplates proposing on next week's season finale of "The Bachelor." Credit: ABC