Backstabbing. BAM! A tumble down the stairs. SPLAAT! A world record makeout session. WHACK! Volleyball catfights. CRACK! Sabotage. KAPOW! Suspicion. KER-PLOP! Sick kids. WHAMM! Bikinis. ARRGGHH! Tears. UGGH! Damage control. OWWW! A shocking rose ceremony. BANG!

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this is an episode of The Bachelor that has it all! Two one-one-one dates, one with a side order of kisses and the other with a delayed start due to a(n un)timely fall. One hot and steamy group date with more tension than clothes. One woman’s scheme to end Sean’s relationship with two other suitors. Tears, tears and MORE TEARS! Oh, how the drama never stops as Sean whittles down his women from 16 to 13, meaning that by the end of this night, he will have eliminated exactly half of his potential brides, and nearly every woman who looks exactly like him (and Emily Maynard).

I use the word frequently in these articles, but stay tuned for Sean himself to drop a crazy-bomb on one of his ladies. Will she make the cut? Will Tierra need Sean to play nurse? Will the Starlight Foundation children like Six Flags? Let’s find out the answers to all these burning questions (not the same type of burning that results from Bachelor Pad).

On a side note, holy crap, does EVERY episode have to start out with Sean exercising topless? We’re three for three so far, and I need to buy a treadmill.

Four Minutes in Heaven

The first date card goes to Lesley M., much to the dismay of Leslie H. the poker dealer, who got really excited before the last name initial was announced. The theme is “How long will this love last?” and at a minimum, it’s like 10 more weeks. They had a little heat on the last group date, when Lesley stole a kiss and drew the wrath of the other women. She thinks “long” means they’re taking a trip somewhere, but instead they’re headed to the Guinness World of Records. That’s where Sean’s dad holds the world record for driving the contiguous 48 states in the shortest amount of time. Now, Sean and Lesley will try and set their own record for longest on-screen kiss, which previously clocked in at 3 minutes and 15 seconds.

They have to show the entire kiss on camera to break the record, so we get to spend roughly 1/22 of the total episode watching a horribly awkward makeout session. They finally stop laughing and get into it about the 2-minute mark, but they still don’t really make out. They just press their lips together and hold them steady the entire time. Yet Sean still says, “Lesley is a really good kisser,” and she says it’s the best day of her life. Are lonely people’s standards that low? My favorite moment was when Chris Harrison dropped a line about Sean copping a feel. But a world record is a world record, I guess. I don’t have one. Anyone want to go on TV and break this record with me? I doubt there’s an easier one to break.

The Political Consultant was a Nerd in High School?! No!

Sean and Lesley click over rooftop drinks, because she belonged to a ton of clubs in high school and her parents are still madly in love. Sean makes her take control because he still has no closing moves, and she jumps right in and kisses him just before the awkward “kiss me” moment really feels awkward. At least he found a solution to the problem he faced last week, as he now flat out tells them to make the first move. He gives her a rose, and now Sean has fallen in love with all three of his one-one-one dates. At least the feelings are mutual in all three instances, after just two weeks.

Volleying for Love

The group date card arrives, and Kacie, Robyn, Leslie H., Kristy, Catherine, Desiree, Taryn, Amanda, Lindsay, Daniella, Jackie and Tierra will all be playing “Who will win my heart?” That means Selma, Sarah and AshLee are out in the cold, with only one of them getting the second one-on-one.

The women head to the beach for a two-team volleyball showdown, with the winning team getting the night with the Bachelor and the losing team heading home in sand-filled crevice shame. And that means two things: Bikinis and tears! And more shirtless Sean, so three things. Chris Harrison keeps his top on, though. Amanda, who everyone hates, looks more and more like a brunette Chelsea Handler each week.
Team Sean (the blue team) is Kacie, Lindsay, Jackie, Robyn, Desiree and Amanda. Team Love (the red team) is Catherine, Taryn (who is JACKED), Leslie, Kristy, Tierra and Daniella. The girls are much prettier than their gameplay, particularly when it comes to serving. The frustration grows because they’re so terrible that there’s really nothing they can do to help themselves win. Desiree serves the deciding point for the blue team, which eeks out a 21-19 win. The red team cries, and Kristy and Daniella are particularly sad. Leslie is worried she will lose her husband without ever getting a real date.

A Devious Night at Sean’s

The winning team gets to spend the night at Sean’s pad, and we get our first real peek at Lindsay. The substitute teacher gets major screen time in a one-on-one kiss-fest with copious amounts of tongue. Desiree gets some more alone time immediately afterwards, and that means some of Lindsay’s sloppy seconds. Amanda then claims to be everything Sean is looking for and overbearingly says that if they got married, she would be “light” and “airy.” Desiree heads back to the crazyland border, toeing the line by questioning if Amanda is there for the right reasons.

Kacie sees an opportunity to exploit the Desiree-Amanda tension, counting on Sean not finding the drama attractive. She claims she feels like she’s been “punched in the face,” because she’s friends with both of them and feels stuck in the middle. But Sean totally calls her bluff and can tell she’s not being genuine, asking her why she’s even involving herself. “I want you to act like Kacie, not like this crazy person that I’m seeing.” Boom. Backfire! Panic mode sets in, and now Kacie is a mess and fearing for her own survival. It gets even worse for her when Lindsay ends up with the rose.

Date, Interrupted

The final date card goes to AshLee, and Sean wants to know if she believes in magic? Tierra makes a joke that Selma’s name is also on the card, which greatly offends Sarah. Cue the eye roll. Good thing Sean didn’t prank her. Right before he arrives for the date, AshLee says “Nothing can and will go wrong today.” Then, as if on cue (or just good editing), Tierra takes a tumble down the stairs. Paramedics arrive and want to take her to the hospital to see if she has a concussion, but she vehemently refuses medical attention, leading the other women to believe she’s a big, skinny faker. AshLee is particularly incensed, sure that Tierra stole her thunder and that a skilled medical team would’ve been able to see through the ruse. She is clearly forgetting the values she learned as a pastor’s adopted daughter, but it’s possibly with good reason. Any woman who would throw herself down a flight of stairs for a shot at love, and not just because she’s really ditzy and clumsy, clearly cannot be trusted.

Six Flags of Feel-Good Bachelor Emotion

AshLee and Sean are spending their date at Six Flags Magic Mountain, which is shut down except for them and a few special guests. Thanks to the Starlight Children’s Foundation, best friends Emily and Brianna are meeting for the first time. They met almost two year ago on the foundation’s social network that links chronically ill children, but they didn’t previously have the opportunity to make their cross-country friendship a physical reality. AshLee and Sean both feel blessed to offer the girls the opportunity, which caps off with a private concert by Sean’s favorite music group, the Eli Young Band. AshLee is brought to tears, and it really is a touching moment.
They finally get some alone time at the end of the night, and AshLee opens up about her adopted life, being physically but not sexually abused in a foster home and finding her place with her family. Now it’s Sean’s turn to shed some tears, and he may have just fallen in love for the fourth time. She gets the rose, and she might be emerging as a favorite. He genuinely admires her, and she really seems like she has good intentions. She also tearfully tells the camera she’s falling in love with Sean, and while I appreciate a bit more discretion, I understand the nature of the show.

Cocktails and Roses

Sean always gives first crack to the women who didn’t get a date, and he’s got a special surprise for Sarah to show her she’s still important to him. Unfortunately, the first part of the surprise terrifies her, as he takes her outside and a limo pulls up. She starts crying, thinking he’s sending her home. But then the door opens and her French bulldog Leo hops out. Her sad tears change to happy tears, and Leo is the man. I’ll get me one of those dogs, and the Bachelorettes will swoon.

Jackie frets over her own lack of connection, or more specifically lack of opportunity, when Sean pulls away Tierra for some one-on-one time. Tierra wants even more time, and he has to remind her that he’s spread pretty thin and the winner could get a lifetime. Desiree jumps in and pulls Sean away, and Tierra “wants to punch some [expletive] walls.” THEN, Tierra steals him right back a few seconds later, and Sean might be getting a clue about what Kacie was fake-talking about. Then it’s Lesley’s turn to interrupt, and then Leslie and Robyn and it’s a full on klepto-cocktail party. He notices the tension and says the dynamic of the house has changed.

Kacie tries to smooth things over, and Sean tells her they took a couple steps back the other night. But before he can elaborate, Selma AND AshLee interrupt. He hasn’t had more than a minute with anyone, and he’s gotta get some of these crazy chicks out of here. Three of them, to be exact.

AshLee, Lindsay and Lesley M. are safe, and the remaining roses go to…no one, yet, because Sean has to finish his conversation with Kacie first. He tells her they hit it off for a reason and he wanted to see if they could be more than friends, but that’s not working for him anymore. He thinks they’re best as friends and knows in his heart they don’t have a romantic future, but he respects her too much to put her through another rose ceremony, so he sends her home on the spot. Not terribly shocking, but still not a run-of-the-mill ceremony.

NOW, the roses go to: Tierra, Leslie H., Catherine, Daniella, Robyn, Selma, Sarah, Jackie, Amanda (Ugh!) and Desiree. Fitness club owner Taryn and model Kristy are going home.

Taryn offers your standard “I-didn’t-open-up-enough” reasoning, and she thinks it might be her lot in life to remain alone. Or you could try to open up more next time. Kristy handles it much more maturely through her tears, saying you can’t force things and hopefully she still has a shot at love. Michael Stagliano, are you single?

We started off with four black girls and three models, and now there’s more of the former (2) than the latter (1), so yaay diversity (Class action lawsuit, what?). And I just don’t think Amanda a) has the look or b) can hold off the crazy long enough to stick around til the end.

Sean is four-for-four falling in love in his one-on-one dates, so favorites are emerging. Lindsay also impressed in her debut, and women like Jackie and Daniella are still waiting for their shot at making a connection. Who do you think will stick around? Which girls will succumb to the crazy curse and get kicked off a la Kacie? Do you think she had a shot if she hadn’t tried to get manipulative?
Tune in next week, when everyone continues to whine about Tierra and the women kick the crap out of each other playing Roller Derby. Robyn also asks Sean if he wants to “taste the chocolate.” Oh, and I think a few of the girls will cry. See you then!

The Bachelor
airs on ABC Mondays at 8pm.

Compete in Fantasy TV: Make your picks on who you think will be going home. Hurry, you have until January 28 at 12pm PST to cast your vote!

And don’t forget to add The Bachelor to your watch-list with the free BuddyTV Guide mobile app.

(Image courtesy of ABC) 


Sean Lowe” />

Bill King

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Emmy-winning news producer & former BuddyTV blogger. Lover of Philly sports, Ned, Zoe, Liam and Delaine…not in that order