I CHOOSE YOU. PSYCH! (BACHELOR RECAP)
Well, this is what we came for. And I'm pretty sure we're all worse for it, aren't you? Be kind to us today, America, we're feeling like terrible, no good, bad people for watching a nice girl cry on our television for 50 unedited minutes! WHAT THE FUCK.
Our hero Arie has come to the end of the Peruvian road. He's left with two choices:
LAUREN: Cold and mercurial. She's the girl in the office that you don't want to get stuck sitting next to at the holiday lunch because SNOOZE. She's a mystery. She has beautiful blonde hair! She's hot, she's cold, and her siren song awakens Arie's most primal instincts about love. His feelings for her are indescribable, he reminds us incessantly. My theory: his mother weaned him too early and he's been trying to latch on to an unattainable woman ever since. (That's a joke, don't @ me about breastfeeding, thanks.)
BECCA: Fun, smart, positive, stable. She's confident in their relationship! She's a stalwart team player in a sea of boobies and extensions! Arie of course knows he should want Becca because this is what an evolved, self-actualized, thirty-six year old man who says he wants to get married and have children should want. (Though I would argue he could probably have found it in a woman not nine years younger than him, but I digress.)
Becca is like going to bed at 9:30 because you're tired and you know you'll be better at work tomorrow if you have a good night's rest. But Arie doesn't want to go to bed at 9:30! Arie wants to stay up all night chewing his fingernails and trying to figure out WHO LAUREN IS. (Spoiler: a girl is no one.) Except wait, he wants to want to want to go to bed at 9:30 so maybe he should try to go to bed at 9:30, because this is adulthood.
It feels like a punishment to make us watch more dates at this point.
Arie keeps things kosher by telling both girls that he's madly in love with them and that they have nothing to worry about and to "stay out of your head." This is good advice because no man like Arie wants a woman who thinks too much. If you're thinking around Arie, you would be running far and fast, never to be seen again.
LET'S MEET ARIE'S FAMILY, BUNCHA JERKS
The girls must pass a final test: meeting Arie's family, who have all really taken their producer coaching to heart or are just a bunch of insensitive dicks, who knows! Arie's dad literally says to Becca, "Eh, it could be either of you and I would be happy either way." LOLOL, DICK. Becca mentions to Arie's mom that it's been hard that Arie's dating someone else, and Mother Warrior Luyndeyk immediately jumps to his defense and says, "THAT'S WHAT ARIE HAD TO DO." I mean, sort of? He was supposed to date everyone but maybe not manipulate the shit out of them?
Becca spends a lot of this episode being just as confused as the rest of America about anyone's attraction to Lauren and repeats frequently how different they are. Straight into the camera, eyes wide, she's like you guys, WHAT, and we're like, sister, WE'RE WITH YOU. When Arie's dad asks her about Lauren, Becca says in the nicest way possible, she's a frigid bitch basically.
The family all meet for a summit and it's hard to not notice that all the women sitting on this wrap around couch are blonde. Arie’s like Becca’s the reasonable choice but Lauren is undeniable love. Everyone agrees Becca is independent and fun and smart and she’s the smart choice. But Lauren’s broken birdsong still calls to Arie's stupid little heart.
We keep interrupting the drama to meet up with Chris Harrison narrating us through a bunch of justifications for all this nonsense. LOVE! LOVE IS THE ANSWER! Now he's sitting with that heaux Caroline and I'm screaming STOP TRYING TO MAKE CAROLINE HAPPEN, IT'S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN.
Jesus Christ there's two hours left.
Lauren and Arie make out on a train and all around Machu Picchu, which seems a little disrespectful to one of the 7 Wonders of the World but whatevs. Lauren gives a speech about how much she loves Arie, though somehow doesn’t talk about any of his personal qualities that she loves. Or really anything specific about him at all. Arie keeps talking about his indescribable feeling. Arie’s like how do you envision our lives and she’s like “Walking the dogs and going to work," and he’s like “ME TOO!” These two are a Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf commercial and we literally have to watch them tell each other they love each other and make out for like a half an hour straight. It’s torture.
Becca's date is trying on hats and petting a llama? Wow, I mean she really is just getting fucked over this entire episode. True to form she keeps a smile on her face and is bubbly and sweet. She lights a candle for him. She reads him a sweet letter she wrote to him. And then she’s got like a scrapbook of them with a spot for a picture of THEIR FIRST BABY. And we all feel terrible at home because we know what she doesn't yet: ARIE IS TERRIBLE.
The gals wander around in their bathrobes and inspect their gaudy proposal dresses. Arie says he's finally clear and picks out a ring with Neil Lane. A llama chews grass next to the proposal mat and then just chews the entire mat up and vomits it at Arie's feet.
Lauren is the first to arrive so we know he’s going to dump her. I actually feel really bad for her. Like she might be boring but no one deserves to be lied to and manipulated like this. She totters past the llamas to the proposal mat. He lets her give a speech – NOT CLASSY DUDE. She’s like you're the man I’ve been looking for my whole life (25 years, gag), he shakes his head no.
Arie looks all mess on the proposal mat as Becca arrives. She gives a speech. He says they’re a team and his love for her is immeasurable and gets down on one knee and says he chooses her today and every day from here on out, and I'm like "ew". He’s like, Lets have babies right now! and swings her around until her tattered rose falls to the ground, a metaphor.
AFTER THE FINAL ROSE
Arie is like, hanging out with Becca has been cool and all, but I can't stop thinking about Lauren. He says Becca sees his struggle and has been understanding. And here I'm like, Becca, hunty, learning this lesson is going to be painful and it's gonna suck, but you're going to be better for it and you're going to be a gorgeous bachelorette, we are here for you! But girl, don't be so understanding when a man is being a fucking child. NOT. HERE. FOR. THAT. SHIT. I don't want to hear any Arie must follow his heart crap. Arie is THIRTY SIX YEARS OLD. Surely he could've had an independent thought and not gotten engaged if he wanted to be a nice, responsible person, no?
Chris says he can only imagine what bachelor nation is going through at home right now. He says this with no irony.
THE UNCUT UNEDITED FIRST OF ITS KIND REALITY TV HISTORY BREAK UP FOOTAGE
Well this is just a nightmare.
Arie says to Becca, in front of a full camera crew at an Air BnB, I can't stop thinking about Lauren, I want to see if I can make it work with her. Becca says, "You've got to be fucking kidding me," and cements herself right into the heart of every woman in America.
The rest of this FIFTY MINUTE segment is Arie languidly following Becca around this maze of a house while Becca asks him to leave. This house seriously is all hallways and doors, hallways and doors! Let's be real, they should’ve edited this.
I've seen a lot of people on the internet asking, Why didn't Arie leave the multiple times she asked him to? ARE YOU SERIOUS. Here's why:
1. Because clearly he doesn't give a shit about what she wants, even when it's something simple like going the fuck home.
2. Because Arie was waiting for HER to make HIM feel okay about what he did. THAT IS WHO ARIE IS and that's gross ass man child privilege DOWN WITH THE PATRIARCHY!
Becca cries and they film her mercilessly and I think that's really when we all collectively start wondering if maybe Arie isn't the worst, but maybe we are? And now they're all coming back tonight to hash it out on Chris Harrison's couch! I want to go on record saying that I think Lauren is in an impossible position here. Unless she dumps him (which I don't think she's going to do on live TV) it's going to be real hard for her not to be the villain when really you shouldn't be villainized for being boring. It's not an actual crime it's just like an undesirable trait. And she shouldn't be villainized for being like the physical embodiment of Arie's emotional ineptitude. Arie and the producers made this damn mess and both Becca and Lauren are going to be the ones to pay for it, and that's a bummer. But Becca's going to make a great Bachelorette and I am really loving Arie's exes dragging his ass all over Twitter. CLAP BACK GIRLS! CLAP BACK!