After 12 weeks of crisscrossing the country and 21 girls being eliminated, we are down to the final two on Rock of Love Bus with Bret Michaels. This go-round Bret managed to look beyond the blonde and the train wrecks, to end up choosing between two fairly normal brunette beauties in the finale: Taya and Mindy. Of course, other than the fact they’re not blondes and they’ve carried themselves with as much class as you can on a show like Rock of Love Bus, Mindy and Taya couldn’t be more different. Mindy is a gorgeous girl next door from Cincinnati, Ohio who no one expected to make it this far on tour. Taya is the 2009 Penthouse Pet of the Year and Bret was instantly smitten with her, so it’s really no surprise she’s made it as far as she has on the road.
Neither Taya nor Mindy’s road to the finale has been smooth. Mindy often suffered from mood swings, which worried Bret. Taya’s motives were questioned throughout her tour because of her modeling career and as we later learned, a possible singing career. However, now that they’re in the finale, both Mindy and Taya are convinced they will be Bret’s Rock of Love. Taya, in her practiced, well-written way says that “When this is over, it’s going to be he and I.” Mindy takes a more competitive approach, “There’s no stopping me, I want Bret.” However, Mindy is aware she’s facing some stiff competition in Taya, the Penthouse Pet. “It does look like Taya is the perfect Bret Michaels girlfriend, born and bred to be with a rock star. I’m just regular Mindy Hall, from Cincinnati, Ohio.” Which is exactly why most of America is rooting for you Mindy, it’s about time Bret tried his hand at a relationship with a real person, not another model. Remember how it turned out with Pam Anderson, Bret?
After a brief recap of both Taya and Mindy’s time on the tour, the episode starts with dreamy romantic music. Bret has stopped by Mindy and Taya’s room for a little morning coffee and conversation. Over breakfast Bret wants to know what the girls think of each other and the possibility the other will be Bret’s Rock of Love. Basically, Bret wants to the girls to tell him what a huge mistake he’d be making if he chose the other one. Mindy tells Bret that, “the best parts of me keep coming and coming. I just keep getting better.” Obviously Bret inquires if Mindy means she physically or emotionally keeps coming and she says both, to his delight. Taya on the other hand tells Bret that she should choose her because, “I don’t pretend to be perfect.” Really Taya? Because I think that’s exactly what you’ve done this entire show. Mindy says as much, prompting Bret to ask the girls if they’re going to have a cat fight, to please rub butter on their breasts and fight that way. Thankfully, Mindy and Taya decline. After his enlightening conversation, Bret tells the girls they’ll be flying via private jet to the “Dominican Republic” (the quotes are Brets, not mine) for their final dates.
The limo pulls up to the Paradiso Resort in the Dominican Republic and there are couples dancing and a butler is waiting with blue girly cocktails for Bret and the ladies. After enjoying a little bit of dancing, Taya and Mindy are led to their room, which is stunning. Taya remarks, “this place is paradise.” Which is a genius comment seeing that the resorts name means paradise. A note from Bret is waiting for the girls in their suite, it says that Mindy will be having her date with Bret tonight and Taya will be going on her date tomorrow. Mindy is thrilled she’ll be enjoying Bret’s company first and Taya is furious about it. “I’m jealous and pissed off. Now I’m just in this jealous funk. I don’t know how low Mindy will go to get him.” Well, let me answer that for you Taya. Mindy will get low, on top, and many other various positions to get Bret.
Bret has planned a “super hot romantic date” with Mindy, that includes dinner, a dance lesson, and some time on the beach. While Bret wants to relax and enjoy his time with Mindy, he’s also using the date to do a little recon and to see if Mindy can open up emotionally to him. Mindy is equally worried about being able to verbalize her feelings for Bret, because she seems to stumble over every word when he is near. Over dinner Bret asks Mindy about her feelings and she cannot eke out a coherent sentence, it is painful to watch and I imagine, even more painful to sit through. After their stumbley worded, semi-silent dinner Bret is feeling distant from Mindy, so he decides to get a little closer to her with a dance lesson. Mindy is smitten that Bret, “this cowboy hat wearing rock star kind of guy” is willing to take a tango lesson with her. But I see through Bret’s ways, now that this is his last Rock of Love, he wants to be on Dancing With The Stars. And truth be told, Bret’s not a bad tangoer, he could definitely make it through a few rounds of DWTS.
After their dancing lesson Mindy and Bret take a moonlit stroll on the beach. Mindy is in awe of the romance novel like setting, but knows it’s do or die time for her to tell Bret her feelings. Mindy’s written some notes to help her tell Bret her feelings and Bret is loving every minute of it. When Mindy tells him she’s the one for him and that she wants to be the one to leave this tour with him, Bret says “had Mindy said this 10 weeks ago, this may have been a much shorter tour.” After enjoying their time on the beach, Mindy and Bret return to Bret’s room for some off camera enjoyment, which lasts all night long. Meanwhile, Taya is getting angrier with each passing minute that Mindy does not return, so she decides to take an angry bath. When Mindy returns to the room the next morning, Taya is furious. She says that she’s lost 99% of the respect she had for Mindy and calls her a slut. Really Taya? Miss Penthouse Pet of the Year and feature dancer? You act like you’re so above using sexuality to get what you want, when that’s actually your career.
Taya has to get out of her jealous funk and fast, because it’s time for her one-on-one date with Bret, which just so happens to be Taya’s first one on one date of the competition. For his date with Taya, Bret has decided to take her into the middle of nowhere for a zip line adventure. This is hilarious. Taya is freaking out, because she is definitely not the adventurous date type of girl. Not to mention, this date is nowhere near as romantic as what Bret had planned for Mindy. Taya says Bret’s choice for a date is killing her, because she is scared of heights and worried the zip line will break. However, once Taya lets go and flies through the jungle she is sold. She says she feels like she stepped out of a Tarzan movie, and she is Jane.
After their adventurous date, it’s time for Bret and Taya to sit down for a romantic dinner, where Bret hopes to clear up some long held concerns about Taya. Bret admits that he has a lot of questions for Taya that he’s been putting off asking for a long time and he doesn’t beat around the bush asking them now. Even before dinner is served, Bret asks Taya, “Were you only here as a promotional tool, like lets admit, a few of the other girls were?” It seems Bret is upset that Taya wasn’t more forthcoming about her career from the get go. “First I learn she’s a Penthouse Pet. Then it turns out she’s Pet of the Year. Then it turns out she disses strippers, when she’s a feature dancer. Then she surprises me with being a singer. This is like a big long advertisement. What’s next, is she going to wear a shirt with Penthouse across her breasts?” Obviously, Bret hasn’t been watching Taya’s confessionals, where she is in fact wearing a tank top that says Penthouse Pet right across her rack. Taya back-handedly assures Bret that she’s there for him, saying “just because I seem too good to be true, doesn’t mean I am.”
This dinner has gotten serious and somber fast, so Bret decides to get dinner wrapped up to take back to his room. Taya says after the dinner, “I feel like pregnancy, on top of menopause, on top of the worst PMS in the world.” Wow, Taya, that’s a glowing endorsement of spending a day with someone. Taya may be smoking hot, but she doesn’t seem like much fun. Back in Bret’s room, the mood lightens up with a make out session. Despite the fact that Bret definitely wants to spend the night with Taya, Taya decides to take the pious road and go back to her room for the night. While Taya is worried she may have ruined her chances with Bret by not spending the night with him, Mindy is pleased and knew it was what Taya would do all along. However, Mindy shouldn’t be so pleased. Because Taya’s evil virginal plan worked; Bret can’t stop thinking about Taya after she rejected the offer of his bed.
The day of the final elimination Bret sends Taya and Mindy to the spa for some pampering and grooming. After their spa day, Taya and Mindy are separately lead to a room where a jeweler is waiting with engagement rings. Wow, we’ve gone from Rock of Love does Dancing with the Stars to Rock of Love does The Bachelor suddenly. Taya, of course, picks the gaudiest gigantic diamond of the bunch. Meanwhile, Mindy is freaking out about the whole diamond ring thing. The fact that she’s looking at engagement rings reminds Mindy what low expectations she came into the show with. Mindy says she only brought a couple of dresses because she only thought she’d be there for a few eliminations. And here she is, looking at what could be an engagement ring from Bret Michaels. With the engagement rings coming into play, both Mindy and Taya become increasingly nervous. And I would be too, this has suddenly gone from becoming Bret’s girlfriend to possibly becoming Bret’s fiance.
Cue the dramatic music, it’s time for the final elimination. Both the girls wax poetic about how they’ll have either won or lost Bret by being themselves. Taya says she’s carried herself with grace and class and that she deserves to be Bret’s Rock of Love. Mindy says Bret already feels like he’s hers and that they are meant for each other. Bret on the other hand is wondering if running screaming off set and swimming back to the US would violate his contract with VH1.
Bret tells the ladies that they both carried themselves with class and beauty, and that only makes his decision more difficult. Bret tells Mindy that she’s shown him some really beautiful qualities, but he is worried about her mood swings and being able to make her happy from the road. In the confessional Taya chimes in saying, “If he picks Mindy, I know it’s not going to last. And down the line, he’ll regret his decision and wish he picked me.” Back to the elimination, Bret tells Taya that she caught his attention immediately but that he holds it against her that she wasn’t honest with him about her career. In the confessional Mindy says that if Bret picks Taya, “A month from now, he’s going to be annoyed.”
It’s time for the final decision and Bret calls Mindy first. Oh no, is this good or very bad? It would be kind of cruel to propose to Mindy in front of Taya, but I would definitely be excited to see it. Bret tells Mindy that he adores her and has absolutely loved how close they’ve become, but that the ring he has isn’t for her. Are you kidding me, Bret Michaels?!?! Wow, that blindsided me. I was totally positive he’d pick Mindy, seeing that the Penthouse pets and models haven’t worked out before for him. But as, you’ve all been telling me in the comments, this show isn’t about Bret finding a lasting relationship and now I am in full agreement. Anyway, back to breaking sweet Mindy’s heart on national television. Bret is trying to small talk sweet nothings to Mindy about how he hopes they stay close and Mindy is having none of it. “Spare me. Spare me the small talk. I don’t think he’s who I thought he was. He’s just a standard asshole in a rock star uniform. You can find that anywhere.” Preach it sister!
And now it’s time to watch Taya gloat, this is going to make me feel sick to my stomach. As Mindy walks away defeated, Taya’s face lights up. “Oh my god, you’re Bret’s Rock of Love, it’s me. I could be the luckiest girl on the planet.” Gag me, Taya. Your promotional plan worked out a little too well ‘eh? Now you actually have to date the guy when the cameras aren’t rolling for a little bit. Bret tells Taya, “I wasn’t sure that either of you was my Rock of Love. And then it donned on me, that you’re the best of both worlds. You are this beautiful mom. You are this rocking centerfold.” Gag me Bret Michaels. Also, why aren’t you on one knee after the whole engagement ring picking out? Bret says he’s not ready to propose to Taya, surprise surprise. He says he’s going to hold on to the ring and propose when he feels it’s 100% the right time. Which guess what guys? Never going to happen. Still, it would be awesome if he did propose and then Taya would have to give her actual birth date for the marriage license…that could throw a wrench into things.
And there you have it America, Bret Michaels took 23 girls on a 12 week tour of America, all to end up with the Penthouse Pet of the Year. Because that’s not a predictable rock and roll stereotype at all. Congrats to Mindy for dodging a bullet with Bret Michaels, hopefully her heart will mend. And congrats to the “happy couple.”
–Abbey Simmons, BuddyTV Staff Writer