'The Bachelor' Week 9: Just Bring on the Finale Already

Reality contestants have transparent motives. They want to win the show and aren’t looking to make friends. Still, we speculate on what’s driving them.

Becca reminded us all last night that she was cast for the show shortly after ending a seven-year relationship. I’m no expert on love, but I’m pretty sure appearing on a reality show famous for exploiting people’s emotions isn’t a good way to deal with heartbreak. Maybe taking some time for reflection or rediscovering your independence would be better than vying for social media dominance in the dating version of The Hunger Games.

Her ex, Ross Jirgl, trekked all the way to Peru to win Becca back. I’d give him points for commitment if it weren’t so obvious Bachelor producers helped every step of the way. Seriously dude, you contacted “everyone you know on the internet” to get here? Sounds like doublespeak for “the producers heard I was still brooding about Becca and thought this would make for some juicy scenes.” And hey, it did.

The shot of Becca walking across the set while Ross approached Arie’s door was the season’s most riveting moment thus far. Turns out Ross is a former football player and current strength coach at Stanford, so the episode had the potential to turn into a full-blown ass kicking. But when Becca rejected his transcontinental proposal, Ross was pretty quick to see the error in his ways. Not a lot of fight from someone who “would’ve swam” there if he had to.

Finally, there’s Arie. I didn’t want to call the Bachelor out after he dealt with Ross so cordially (almost like he saw it coming! *wink*), but then he dared to question Becca’s commitment to him. What more could Becca possibly have done? She didn’t know her ex was there. Anyway, she actually dealt with him more forcefully than Arie did.

Peru, a country whose booming tourism is actually causing some problems, provided a pretty backdrop. We got a little bit of Lauren’s super repressed emotion, which is cool, but I don’t think anyone watching is really sure of how she feels. Maybe if she took some time away from stiffly cuddling Arie to actually enjoy Peru, she might’ve loosened up a bit.

Despite claiming to love her quirkiness in previous episodes, Arie opted to keep the show’s two blandest contestants and eliminated Kendall. As I’ve written before, every woman eliminated dodged a bullet. Kendall made off with a boatload of Instagram followers, kicked Krystal to the curb, introduced the world to her taxidermy obsession and still got off Arie-free. I’d take those over a lifetime of “I love thats” any day.

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