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'The Bachelorette': Jonathan cries, Justin hobbles, and Hunter is in the friend zone

June 8, 2010 |  7:23 am
119824_0189_ful Episode 3 was by far the most awkward episode of "The Bachelorette" ever. Jonathan crying because he's afraid to kiss Ali? Awkward. Rated R trying to lie and failing miserably? Awkward. Frank wobbling while watching Kirk and Ali roll around in bed? Holy awkward, Batman. Hunter trying to make out with Ali in the hot tub because they had nothing to say to each other? You catch my drift.

Roberto gets tonight's first solo date. He was the first man with a rose this season after getting the first-impression rose on Day One, and Ali's obviously still quite smitten with him. They hop in a helicopter, which gives Ali more time to complain about her fear of flying. Again.

They have to traverse a high wire across downtown L.A. skyscrapers to get to their dinner. I hope their dinner was worth it, because In-N-Out is pretty good, and it's on the ground. Ali and Roberto share a high-wire kiss.

There's something about Roberto that inspires Ali to speak only in a tiny baby voice. It's kind of annoying. They eat and discuss what a cunning linguist Roberto is and then they spoon and tell each other how cute they are. It's all very "You hang up!" "No, you hang up!" Roberto gets a rose. Shock!

The group date is next, and it includes Frank, Craig, Rated R, Jonathan, Jesse, John, Kirk, Chris N. and my favorite, Chris L. They meet Ali under an overpass, and then they go meet some random dudes with instruments. Once they start playing "One Week," we realize they're the Barenaked Ladies, minus Steven Page, the only recognizable band member (who left the group in 2009 after a drug arrest).

Ali and the boys get to be part of the band's new video for "You Run Away," which all the Bachelors can relate to because Ali always runs away from them. Get it? Ali appears in a vignette with each of her men. She slaps Frank nine times in a row, cozies up to Chris L. in a bathroom, and makes out with Kirk in a bed … long after the director calls cut.

The most painful part of the video shoot is Ali's vignette with Jonathan. He's so terrified of kissing her on camera that he cries. In front of everyone. Does he realize that he's on a reality show? About dating? Between last week's tattletale whining and his nerves getting the best of him this week, I'm starting to hope Jonathan goes home just so I don't have to watch him be super awkward ever again.

Later, they go out for drinks, and Ali gets some one-on-one time with some of the guys. Chris L. finally tells her about his mother's death. I respect that he's not spilling his guts entirely, though; he recognizes that it's not necessarily appropriate to talk about something so important when you're just getting to know each other. He keeps his feelings about his mom close to his chest.

Jonathan. Is. Awkward. So awkward that as he's going in to kiss Ali, I almost collapse in relief when Craig (Toby Flenderson) interrupts.

Apparently, Rated R didn't get enough alone time with Ali (or enough camera time, if you buy what Toby Flenderson is selling). The next day, he decides to walk to Ali's house to talk to her. Of course, that's easier said than done, because he's on crutches. The last time I was on crutches, I couldn't even make it from my dorm to my 8 a.m. lit class. His hike is impressive.

Ali seems impressed, too, when he interrupts the talking head she's filming. They look at some photos of Rated R's family and then she drives him back to the mansion. She's pretty touched by the whole thing. I'm wondering why Justin didn't just call a cab or something.

Back at the house, the guys really start in on Rated R. Honestly, I don't think he's as bad as they make him out to be, but I can see where he'd get a little annoying. He's a horrible liar, for one thing, and if he keeps up that I-know-something-you-don't-know smirk, he's liable to get punched. Kasey is the major instigator of this particular fight -- which leaves Rated R pretty emotional -- and I'm surprised, because I didn't think Kasey was the type to get into it with a "professional" "entertainment" "wrestler."

Ali picks Hunter up for a date back at her place. Awk. Ward. She's in jeans and a T-shirt, and they barbecue and chat before hanging out in the hot tub, which is pretty much an ideal first date, if you ask me. It's casual and relaxed and doesn't involve hamming it up for tourists on Hollywood and Highland.

Still, Hunter just can't win her over. He gets her talking about her family and her childhood, but there are a lot of long pauses. When he tries to fill them by kissing her shoulder in the pool, she starts talking and pulls away from him.

I wasn't surprised that she sent him packing at the end of the date. If drinking in a hot tub doesn't make you feel amorous, nothing will.

At the pre-rose-ceremony boozefest, Ali accidentally tells Roberto about Rated R's little off-the-books hike. Oops. If he wasn't the most hated one in the house before, he certainly is now. I'm hoping Rated R's stunt inspires more creative wooing techniques.

Oh, and for the record, this week's "Rated R" joke from Craig: "Rated R stands for retired." Good one. Almost as good as Rated Bad, Rated Dishonest and Rated I Don't Believe a Word You Say. Awesome.

The rose ceremony is boring. John and Steve go home. Since I haven't written one thing about either of them, I'm not crying in my Cheerios. So far, my favorites are Frank and Chris L., but I think Roberto tops Ali's list. I would like him too, but I still don't like the way she develops Paris Hilton voice when she's around him.

The best part of the episode is the outro, in which Chris L. and Steve try to trap a mouse in the house. I want to hang out with these guys.

-- Carina MacKenzie

Related Articles:
Craig M. gets what he deserves
Ali meets 24 potential husbands and a guy named Rated R

Photo: After the waterworks, Ali lays one on Weatherman Jonathan. Credit: ABC