'The Bachelor' Recap: Love and Heartbreak in Thailand
'The Bachelor' Recap: Love and Heartbreak in Thailand
Bill King
Bill King
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
Is it just me, or did this season of The Bachelor go by really quickly? We're already down to our final three women, and in two short weeks, it'll all be over! It seems like just yesterday that Fifty Shades of Crazy was getting drunk and trying to convince Sean Lowe to do naughty things to her with a necktie. There were models, hopeful black chicks, Lindsay in a wedding dress and a pretty girl with extra ambition and fewer arms. Now, there's just AshLee, Catherine and Lindsay, and we're already speculating whether the next Bachelorette will be Desiree or Sarah. My, how time flies. I was 32 and 3 months old when the show started, and now I'm 32 and 5 months. How I long for my youth...

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It's time for the romantic overnight dates in Thailand, as Sean is forced to eliminate another potential bride. Will he send home AshLee and her over-sized heart? It used to be two sizes too small before the Whos taught her the true meaning of Christmas. Or maybe it will be Lindsay, the 5-foot-nothing ball of sexpot fun who is apparently the best kisser in show history. Or is it the end of the line for best-friend-in-waiting Catherine, who almost quit after Lesley left just because she though Lesley and Sean would've been great together? Three will enter, only two will stay, and I'm pretty sure only one is a lock for the fantasy suite. (Love you, Lindsay!)

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Sean Contemplates His Choices

The quartet is heading to Si Kao to continue their journey toward love and a possible eight-month life-long bond, and Sean is crazy about all three girls. He describes Catherine as weird, nerdy and goofy, and since he's all those things, their relationship is special. They have a balance between the fun and the serious, which he doesn't have with the other two. 

Then there's AshLee, which he believes is the strongest relationship so far. She's open and honest and communicates, usually by standing on a chair and shouting her emotions to the world. Blindfolded. But her abandonment issues are a potential red flag, as is her intense nature. But Sean pictures them with a house and kids, living the American dream.

Finally, there's Lindsay, who Sean initially thought was crazy, and not in the good way. He assumed she was just fun, but worried she didn't have the depth or maturity he was looking for. Then they ate dinner in front of a fireplace in Montana, and Lindsay talked about when she "was an adolescent," and they connected on an emotional, physical and spiritual level.

Sean licks his lips when talking about the potential of the fantasy suites and finding his wife, and after a couple months of hot and heavy makeout sessions, he really, really wants to find his wife this week. 

Sean Bugs Lindsay

LIndsay is up first, which means she gets him when his lips are freshest, and she is determined to drop an L-bomb on him. They kiss a lot in the back of a rickshaw on the way to a market with multi-colored chicks (like, actual dyed baby chickens), where they sample the local flavor and scarf down some cooked insects. The crunchy part is the thorax! (Bonus points if you can guess who said that quote. Comment below!)

Next, they sit on the beach and talk about how much they like each other. Lindsay assures that she is ready to settle down and would be lucky to start a life with Sean, who tells her she is the best friend he is looking for. Anyone else feel like there were some awkward moments of silence between their talking? That thought is fleeting, though, because they then feed adorable tiny monkeys. Can Sean get rid of Lindsay and keep the monkeys? Best date ever!

Damn, Girl!

Lindsay is looking h-o-t in a dress as tiny as the monkeys when they meet for dinner in front of traditional Thai floats. Girl is putting it out there on the overnight date. They enjoy some wine while she struggles to tell Sean she loves him. She is soooo close, right on the verge of saying those three little words, when a bunch of dancers jump out and ruin it. 

He drops the fantasy suite card, which she happily accepts. If she can't find the perfect moment to tell him how she feels while they're all naked in bed, she'll never be able to say it. She womans up before that, though, telling him right before they head off to bed. The show plays triumphant music like the hero just slayed the dragon, rescued the princess and carried her off into the sunset, and the happy couple retire for the evening. One thing Lindsay has over the other women is that she's not holding back at all over the fear of getting hurt. She's laying it all on the line. 

Wait, AshLee Has Abandonment Issues?

AshLee's date is up next, and Sean is still really excited to be in the south of Thailand. He has a lightness in his step that he didn't have before, like a huge load has been lifted from his, uh, shoulders. 

AshLee describes how she loves Sean, like, a lot, as they take a romantic boat ride. She doesn't know where his head is, though, and he worries about her residing in her comfort zone too much. So they're swimming through a deep, dark cave to get to their own private island, and AshLee is freaked out because she was abandoned as a child and apparently worries Sean will leave her in the cave. Jeez, girl, we get it. You have issues with vulnerability. But I'm so tired of hearing you say the word "abandonment." At some point, you have to get over it!

It seems like it would be an awesomely cool experience, but instead, she is terrified and just trying to get out alive. Thankfully, she has another AshLee analogy to help get through it. Because when you're in a relationship, you're going down a dark alley and it's scary to take a risk when you don't know the outcome. The swim represents her completely letting go of every structure she has and doing something far beyond anything she thought she'd be doing. Sean is her missing puzzle piece, and blah blah blah, eye roll. Ugh. Sometimes you just do cool stuff without there being a big lesson behind it. But damn, that girl looks good in a bikini.

The Overnight Date: Will She or Won't She?

AshLee wants with all her being to be Sean's fiancee, but she has been dreading the fantasy suite invitation since the beginning. She doesn't take the idea of spending the night together lightly, especially because he's doing the same thing with two other girls. She's not willing to morally put herself out there, and the idea he might be (with the others) does not sit well in her jumbo-sized heart. 

Sean, knowing AshLee and how she might perceive the fantasy suite, says he wants to put her mind at ease and that the perfect night for him would be if they just stayed up together and talked. She completely trusts him and knows he won't cross that boundary, so she accepts the invitation. He tells us (not her) that he's falling in love with her, and they head off for an enticing night of deep connection and conversation. Very different from Lindsay's overnight, I imagine, and it's tough for even us to guess where Sean's head is at. 

I'm a little turned off by her describing her ideal engagement ring -- really, diamonds all the way around the band? I assume she's keeping in mind that the show will be paying for it -- but then she gets really sweet and calls Sean her soulmate. She says he healed her broken heart and broken spirit, and if she gets the chance, she'll do everything in her power to make sure he's happy. It's very touching and very intense, and I worry for her if he doesn't pick her.

Catherine Gets Serious (Sort Of)

Catherine happily and giddily jumps into Sean's arms, and she reminds me so much of my own weird, goofy girlfriend that I find myself pulling for her. But Sean still has concerns about their lives blending together, though he admits being away from her made him realize how much he missed her. 

She wants him to know that she also has a serious side, and that she hasn't been this comfortable and open and herself as much with anyone in nearly four years. He calls her his best friend, which seems like a messed up thing to say after he already told Lindsay that she was his BFF. He expresses his worries over her being a free spirit and questions her willingness to settle down, and she assures him that she'd give it all up for the right guy. 

They do some snorkeling and some smooching in the rain, and Catherine thinks she may finally be ready to tell Sean that she is falling in love with him.

Catherine Jumps the Gun

Sean feels like Catherine "gets him" better than anyone else, and he sees the potential for marriage in their future. She considers herself traditional and always thought she would pass on the fantasy suite so she could remain "a lady." But now she realizes it's just about spending time with him, so she basically accepts the invitation before he even offers it. Like he did with AshLee, Sean reassures her that his intentions are just to talk and have some intimate alone time. Still, he's attracted to the fact that she's scared of the overnight date. 

She calls him a hunk and he says she's smoking hot, then there's an awkward moment of silence during which everyone at home is screaming, "I love you," from their couches, but those words aren't coming out of Catherine's mouth tonight. While their connection might be the strongest and the most "real" outside of TV land, her hesitation could end up leading to her elimination.

A Strange Moment in Bachelor History

"Picture this. A man finds himself in an exotic land, entangled with three beautiful women. There are breathtaking vistas, romantic dates and dreams of happily ever after. Sound familiar? Well, not so fast. We'll have plenty of time to discuss Sean and his adventures on next week's The Women Tell All. But in this case, I'm talking about Disney's upcoming film, Oz the Great and Powerful. But don't take my word for it. Ladies?" -- Chris Harrison

Cue Michelle Williams, Mila Kunis and Rachel Weisz talking about their new movie. Guess they needed some extra filler (and promotion) this week. That came out of nowhere. 

Back to the Roses

A shirtless Sean wakes up knowing who he needs to send home. He knows how special she is and what she brings to the table, but his relationships with the other two women are just stronger. This is the week during which he had his heart broken by Emily, and he knows it will be hard to send home a girl he never anticipated saying goodbye to. It will be even harder than saying goodbye to Desiree, and he worries he doesn't have the words or courage. Still, he's in love and expects he will be dropping to one knee at the end of all this. 

But before the rose ceremony, each woman has left a private video message for Sean that could sway his feelings. 

Lindsay is falling in love with him and wants to be his wife. She met him in a wedding dress, and she'd like to wear one again for him soon. 

Catherine finally tells him she is also falling in love, and she feels accepted and comfortable being herself. Also, ever since their first kiss, he gives her "the wiggles." 

AshLee is the happiest she's ever been in her entire life, and Sean is tearing down the wall she's been building since she was a kid. She can't imagine one day without Sean or walking away not having him as her partner for life. She feels that together, they are whole, and then she starts crying because she now knows that she is no longer broken. And for that, she will always love him. He cries too, because it's so serious that it's hard to smile. 

Someone's Gotta Go

A thunderstorm is setting a depressing tone for elimination day, and Sean remains confident in his decision. Still, he's heartbroken, and he's worried she won't be okay once it's all over. And at this point, I have no idea who it will be. I have a guess, but it could really be anyone. 

Sean gives a nice disclaimer before handing out the roses, apologizing in advance for whoever he blindsides with heartbreak. He just wants that person to know how much he cares and how agonizing the decision was. 

The first rose goes to an expletive-dropping Lindsay, and the second to a nearly hyperventilating Catherine. I thought that's why he was crying while watching AshLee's video. And she is pissed. Not the reaction I expected. 

She walks off without saying goodbye to the other girls, and even tells Sean not to walk her to the car. It's only when he asks for the chance to explain himself that she turns around. In the end, he just felt like there was too much intensity there. He thinks the world of her and doesn't want her to doubt that. There's no hug, no handshake, no words spoken. Not a single tear comes to her eye. 

All she has to say in the car is that this wasn't a game to her and that it's the ultimate reject. Then the tears come. Welcome back, gaping soul hole. Hopefully, we'll find out next week that she is doing okay now. 

Sean is down to his final two women, and in two weeks, we'll find out which one is now his fiancee. Both Catherine and Lindsay will be meeting Sean's family, and his mother tearfully urges him not to propose to either of them right away. There's also a letter from one of the ladies that rocks Sean's world. I'm sure we'll have plenty of time to digest it during the three-hour live finale. But first, the women tell all next Monday. 

Which girl do you think is better for Sean? They're both very different, but he can be fun and serious with both. Do you think he'll make the right decision? Will the relationship last? Will there be a Bachelor wedding? We'll find out soon enough.

You can watch The Bachelor every Monday at 8pm on ABC. 


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(Image courtesy of ABC)



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