Previously on The Bachelor: Nick was threatened by an angry dad and Cass visited reality for the first time ever.
Tonight on The Bachelor: We find out how reliable women’s magazines are.
Yes, we’ve been shown photos purporting to depict the departure of Brooke from the Mansion. On the one hand, the evidence looks compelling. On the other hand, c’mon, how could Brooke be going home? Brooke and Nick have been, for all intents and purposes, married since episode one. And yet, we all know how disappointing life can be. If we didn’t, we’d hardly be watching The Bachelor, would we?
Anyway, here we are, in the bush, with Nick running without his shirt. One assumes he is fleeing a murderous clan of hill people/Brittany’s father, because why else would someone run through the bush without a shirt?
But no, Nick is actually running from his feelings. He doesn’t know who he’s going to take to meet his family, in what should be the series’ most anti-climactic moment given they’ve already met his family, like, ages ago.
Each bachelorette gets another date so Nick can figure out which one he will choose and which two he will see on the side. The first date is with Sophie, who has a lot of trouble saying how she feels but very little trouble making softcore porn in a prime-time slot. “I feel like today’s make or break,” Sophie says, affirming her total commitment to the process of dehumanisation that the show represents.
This is going to be a flashback-heavy episode, it would seem. We keep having to see stuff that’s already happened.
For today’s date Nick is taking Sophie on what he calls “the scariest” date yet. From the looks of it he’s going to drive her off a cliff. “Did you have fun with my family?” Sophie asks. Nick says he did, and he’s probably telling the truth, as Sophie’s family compared quite favourably with Brittany’s homicidal maniacs, Cass’s mental hospital ward, and Brooke’s best friend telling him to stay away forever.
After a bit of banter on the subject of the Sophie Family, they arrive at their destination: a small plane. That’s right: it’s the skydiving episode. Will this be the date on which Nick finally realises his long-held dream of killing both himself and a bachelorette? It is an excellent choice for a date, because there is nothing more romantic than jumping out of a plane, and since this is the most important date of all, it’s perfect: what better way to decide whether a woman is the one for you than pushing her out of a plane and seeing how hard she lands?
So up they go, and although the music editor would have us believe otherwise, it’s not particularly dramatic television. Both Sophie and Nick are very scared of jumping out of planes, due to the human brain having evolved to be very scared of jumping out of planes. “I’m as nervous as a goose in a doona factory,” says Nick, proving himself as ignorant of ornithological psychology as he is of bedding manufacturing processes. And he thinks he’s good enough for Brooke?
For what seems like an eternity, Nick and Sophie quiver in terror at the open door of the plane, until, with tension reaching breaking point, suddenly they don’t jump. The pilot tells them the wind is too strong and they have to go back down without skydiving even a little bit.
Nick and Sophie sob with relief and kiss each other, knowing instinctively that going through the incredibly traumatic experience of not jumping out of a plane together will bring them even closer together, much like a platoon in Vietnam. Afterwards they sit on one of those weird couches that just sort of pop up out of nowhere, sink a bit of piss and tell each other that they have feelings in large quantities. “I’ve never been more vulnerable,” Sophie tells him, like some kind of of mad idiot. She tells him she’s falling head over heels for him, which is a line she stole from a Go-Go’s song. Plagiarism at its most shameless.
The next day, Brittany walks to a lighthouse atop a windswept cliff, from where Nick will attempt once again to plunge to his death. Brittany is still obsessing over whether Nick had sex with Cass, even though Cass has been sent home, which is a really healthy way for her to live her life. Brittany thinks there could be a real future for her and Nick, just as long as he promises her that he has never been with another woman ever in his life.
Nick shows up in an ice-cream truck, to symbolise how easily he melts under pressure. They sit and eat ice-cream, which could be described as a more sedate way to conduct a date than hurling yourself out of a plane. Nick asks Brittany how her family liked him. Brittany lies and says that they all thought he was great.
“Today is about classic romance,” says Nick, and you get the distinct feeling they’re going to pull a heist together. But actually they’re just going to the top of the lighthouse, to re-enact scenes from the most romantic television show ever made: Round The Twist. At the top, they look at the harbour. “Not many people get to do this,” says Brittany in delight, having not heard about how common it actually is for people to walk up stairs and look at the harbour.
One of the ads that plays during the show is for a stool-softener. Make of that what you will.
After a hard day’s standing and looking at things, Brittany and Nick repair to the mysterious couch for some more heavy drinking. A string trio comes onto the lawn to play some a waltz. Nick and Brittany dance in as stiff and awkward a fashion as you’d imagine they would. It’s worth noting at this point that Sophie got neither a string quartet nor a dance. Nor did she get any ice-cream. She just had to be taken up in a plane and threatened with her worst fear. There’s something asymmetrical about these dates, quite apart from the fact that, you know, hasn’t this guy ever heard of going to the movies?
Moving inside to another couch and some more liquor, Brittany tells Nick that seeing him at her home, the way he fit in with her family and the way her family took it in turns to threaten him, she knew that he was The One. But she has just one nagging doubt: why didn’t he give her a detailed blow-by-blow account of his sexual interactions with Cass as soon as he met her? She feels incredibly hurt that Nick was not honest about the vague allegations that her sister told her that she had read on some website somewhere or something.
Nick assures her that he is not still dating Cass and that his past relationships are definitely some of her business. “I’m all in,” Brittany says in response, like a woman who has just been pressured into buying pet insurance. “Hearing that is really special,” says Nick, slightly less non-committally than he could theoretically have.
It’s time for Nick’s date with Brooke, the woman he is obviously going to choose but also maybe she’s going to leave tonight according to that magazine but maybe not. Nick is riding a motorbike and pondering “where his heart lies”, due to his inadequate medical education. Nick does not want to stuff Brooke around, at least not in a bad way.
Brooke is walking amongst the trees and worrying that Nick might have a connection with the others similar to the one he has with her. She needn’t worry: Nick’s only connection with Sophie and Brittany is that he really really wants to have sex with them over and over again. Nick invites her to hop on the back of his bike. Like any sane person, Brooke is frightened of riding on a motorbike with Nick, but she’s a tough lady so she gets on and they ride off to Fernbank Farm, where they will milk cows or something I guess.
Brooke’s date will involve bodypaint. She and Nick are both going to paint each other, or to put it another way, they are both going to smear fluids all over each other. It’s reminiscent of the time they had to describe each other to the sketch artist, but it’s a lot filthier. “The eyes are the window to the soul,” says Nick, as he gazes in rapt wonder at Brooke’s chest. The couple look in the mirror to see what they’ve painted on each other. Brooke now has two people painted on her, and Nick has a tree. So that’s meaningful in some way I guess.
Then they wash each other off and totally get it on while they’re all slippery and wet. “Everything about her is perfect,” says Nick, which in many cultures is seen as a sign of affection. Then they sit on a couch and drink as is the way of things. Brooke tells Nick that he is the most decent guy she’s met in a very long time, but then she is from Perth.
Brooke demands to know where Nick stands. He tells her usually he’s out on the wing but at times he roves infield to take an inside ball off the flyhalf. Then, after the misunderstand is cleared up, he admits that he is “struggling feelings-wise” due to having three girlfriends, which is a really weird situation to be in and also the reason why going on The Bachelor is an incredibly dumb thing to do. Almost as dumb as telling Brooke that you’re struggling feelings-wise instead of just saying, yes you’re ace, I’m totes into you. Especially when on the voiceover all he could talk about was how perfect Brooke is and how much he adores her. Instead he’s pissfarting about with this “I don’t know what my feelings are” crap. Who is he, Sophie?
Brooke asks him for reassurance that he likes her – that whole tongue-kissing and groping each other five minutes ago apparently didn’t send a very clear signal. Nick, who has declared Brooke perfect, is just not ready to commit to anything as final as “I like you”, and simply stares blankly into the middle distance. He makes Brooke cry, like a total bastard. This looks very ominous, but then again that might be just what they want us to think.
Time for a rose ceremony. Will he send Sophie home for being too bland, Brooke home for being too perfect, or Brittany home for being too closely related to violent murderers? If he has any brains he’s already picked Brooke, but we have yet to have conclusive evidence that he has any brains.
Suddenly, before Nick enters for the rose ceremony, Brooke walks out to find TAFKAAG, who is hiding in his pantry. She demands to speak with Nick. The depressing couple go to the garden for a sad talk. “Yesterday was pretty amazing,” Brooke begins, which isn’t good because it can’t be followed by anything but “but”. She repeats that she needs reassurance that Nick wants to be with her, and Nick has constantly refused to give her that reassurance.
Nick, who now knows beyond any doubt that he will lose this woman if he doesn’t come straight out and say that he can definitely see a future for them, cleverly completely fails to say this. “I need a guy who knows what he wants,” says Brooke, making her decision to go on a show where a man dates two dozen women at once utterly baffling. “You are incredible,” she adds, somewhat inaccurately, before finishing with “I need to go home”.
Nick, knowing that sitting staring like a brick at his own feet is the way to a woman’s heart, does so without delay. Then he says that he won’t stand in her way, “as much as I don’t want to”. Which you’d think was a pretty good indication that, you know, he doesn’t want her to go. But still, even though it’s blindingly obvious that these two people are wildly in love with each other, he walks her to the car and she gets in the car and he says “fuck” and so, frankly, do I.
What a couple of dumbasses.
Tune in tomorrow, when honestly who even cares anymore it’s all ruined.