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Bachelor Recap Week 8: Hometown Showdown

Ooooooohhhhhh boy folks. It’s Hometown Week, where the giddy ladies (plural) bring their boyfriend (singular) home to their families, friends and loved ones.

What could possibly go wrong? This episode is possibly – in my opinion – one of the most uncomfortable of the season. No matter how I feel about the Bachelor/Bachelorette or remaining suitors, watching them squirm in front of families and have to field questions like “What will you do after the show?” “What can you promise my daughter?” “Is this real love on your part?” is so awkward.

Which, don’t get me wrong, are totally valid normal questions. In the real world.

But this is Bachelor World folks, and it was killer watching poor Nick try to take all the worry and anger from the families as he silently repeats in his head – “Haven’t you ever watched this show before, you crazy people. This is how is works. I DIDN’T MAKE THE RULES”.

Poor guy. But also, poor families. Imagine literally watching your loved ones walk directly towards a deep, dark pit – one that they have 75 percent chance of falling into. That’s gotta be hard.

Ok – I’m getting too philosophical here, time for me to shut up and us to go through the dates.

Raven
Or maybe Rambunctious Raven? Raunchy Raven? We saw a dirtier (PUN INTENDED) side of the southern belle this week as she took Nick home to Hoxie, Arkansas. I don’t know if they tried to make Hoxie boring for the show, or the town really only consists of ATVs, swamps and Raven’s house. Cause that is all we saw. But more on the swamp….Raven and Nick were positively pornographic when their swamp play turned sexy. I’ve never though anything about a swamp could be hot, and they sure didn’t convince me – but boy was I impressed at how hard these kids tried.

Once they clean themselves up (physically and mentally, I hope) they meet Raven’s wonderful family. The whole group finds out Raven’s father’s latest scan has come back cancer free – and an emotional celebration ensues (Nick looks extremely uncomfortable and out of place, remember this is a complete stranger in their home) but it’s a sweet moment. I personally come out of this date thinking Raven might be Final 2.

Rachel
I don’t want to spend too much time on this because stupid ABC already announced that Rachel is the next Bachelorette, so that means she and Nick don’t happen. I should probably retract that statement for the good of my job (I work for an ABC station, after all), but COME ON. Why you gotta do that? I love Rachel, I’m so glad that she is the next Bachelorette, I’ll definitely watch her journey to find love – but I wish I had seen the natural playout of Nick and Rachel’s relationship. Well, as natural as Bachelor World can be.

Corinne
OH THANK GOODNESS. Sorry, I was just dreading the day Corinne was kicked off this show – and thankfully today is not that day. She lives for another week! I know, I know; we give mixed signals about the resident Bad Girl. We love her, we hate her, we love to hate her. Come on, she’s soundbite GOLD!

Corinne continues to live happily on her own island, and doesn’t seem aware of it at all. Case in point – she takes Nick to a high-end luxury mall on their date in her hometown of Miami. We’re sure Nick got a pretty sweet deal monetary for doing the Bachelor, but even his eyes pop out of his head at the cash Corinne is throwing around. My favorite exchange of the night comes after Corinne spends over $3,000 on an outfit for Nick:

Corinne: “This is the best day of my life.”
Nick: “I have hives.”

To be honest, watching Nick be overwhelmed and confused by Corinne is the most we’ve liked him in a long time.

What happens next is…well, weird. We meet Corinne’s family – who seem as oddball as her, and sweet Raquel who likely has no idea the internet sensation she has become, and the biggest debate and worry of the night commences. Is her family worries about Nick picking her? About Nick really loving her? About Nick hurting her?

No.

The Olympios family is really worried that Nick might not make enough money to be able to buy all the things she needs. Which, after the date they just had is a valid concern I suppose. All seems to be made well once Corinne says she is willing to be the breadwinner of the family, and Nick thinks that’s sweet.

Maybe they’re just weird enough to make this thing work together.

Vanessa
Off to Canada to see my personal favorite and frontrunner – although this gal had a tough day. In the word’s of my colleague “Vanessa’s family has got to be the most real hometown in 20+ seasons of this show”.

And we agree! It’s not that the family is normal – which they are – or that they’re worried about Vanessa – which they are – it’s that they methodically and kindly point how all the things Nick and Vanessa haven’t thought about. Where will they live after the show? If Vanessa moves with Nick, what will she do? What would Nick do in Montreal? Vanessa's father in particular is especially hard on Nick - not in a super mean way - but in a very forward and pointing way. And when Nick sort of kind of asks for Vanessa's hand (if it gets to that point), her Dad says no - and then immediately turns around and asks him if he asked everyone else.

The hometown didn’t end badly, but it didn’t end great either. Going into this week I thought Vanessa was the frontrunner, and now I’m reconsidering. If I were making bets – as of right now – I would say next on the chopping block is Rachel (duh), then Corinne (say it ain’t so) and the winner whoever, between Raven and Vanessa, makes Nick emotional cry first.

May the best emotionally exhausted, perpetually tipsy, ridiculously insure woman win!

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