So, it’s the Big Day for Emily, our intrepid single mom who has winnowed the field of single gentlemen down to just two guys: nice guy Utah Jef and hot guy Racecar Driver Arie. I am hoping Emily can, if nothing else, help Jef find his missing F, just to be nice.
But before anyone can propose (which the promos suggest won’t actually happen) on The First Ever Live Finale of “The Bachelorette” (we know that because we Chris Harrison tells us so, and it matters… well, it doesn’t matter, because the whole proposal thing happened months ago), the guys have to meet the parents. The parents, having probably gotten a little tired of their daughter trolling for step-baby daddies on reality TV, do not seem entirely thrilled by this prospect. Dad Dave and brother Ernie seem downright negative when Jef shows up. Ernie doesn’t think Jef can live up to Emily’s dead former fiance, and Dave doesn’t believe it’s possible to love two people at the same time, no matter what Emily says. Wow, way to sell it, guys. Arie, however, being a smooth operator, presents a box of dried roses — yes, he kept every rose Emily gave him. Swoon.
Now, at this point, I’m honestly torn. Jef seems nice. Arie seems nice. Arie also seems a little slick. But, then again, Arie is a lot cuter. And Emily loves kissing him. There’s definitely chemistry there, perhaps too much chemistry. Well, not sure if there really is such a thing, but it’s probably hard for her to think too clearly about Mr. Hottie Racecar Driver. No wonder Emily’s all tortured and stuff.
Back to business! Emily’s cold fish parents aren’t all that important. The real family, to Emily, is her kid, Ricki. She invites Jef to meet the kid, and he’s SUCH a kid person. He plays! He eats Cheetos! Ricki thinks he’s super cool! Which was not guaranteed, by the way. Having determined that not only is Jef not a pedophile, he’s actually decent father material (which a lot of the aspiring bachelors gave lip service to, but I had my doubts), Emily knows what she wants to do. She’s committed to Jef, and she’s simply too nice to make Arie go through the whole embarrassing proposal rigamarole. Oh, Emily, that’s what we like! You are depriving us! Spoil sport!
That doesn’t, however, mean that we don’t get to see at least some footage of Arie looking like a sad, clueless patsy. He makes a love potion for Emily! He can’t believe he’s getting engaged! He knows it’s right between the two of them! Oh, Arie, stop. You’re killing me here. Soon Emily comes to take his hands and break the bad news. Sure, she loves him — she just loves Jef a little bit more.
Arie is gobsmacked, as you might expect. I want him to shriek, “But I’m WAY hotter than Jef!” but he doesn’t. Still, he doesn’t take this so well. Emily begs him not to storm out, but he does anyway. He isn’t going to be one of those weepy, sweet bachelors. He’s a little pissed. “Thank you for sparing me the embarrassment tomorrow,” he says, dripping sarcasm. “I appreciate that.” Poor Arie.
So, all that’s left to do is accept a proposal from Jef. Emily is so glad she picked Jef. Jef is so in love. Blah, blah, blah. Go to your local Hallmark card store, leaf through the merchandise, and you’ll pretty much get the gist of this. Jef proposes, Emily accepts, love is in the air.
This is all very nice, but I can’t say this finale was too nail-bitingly tense. In the last installment of “The Bachelor,” we were confronted with the horror of Ben actually wanting to be with that vicious sniperette Courtney, and it HAPPENED. Here, we have nice Arie and nice Jef and really, Emily couldn’t go wrong either way. Given that a kid was involved, I don’t think Emily was willing to play into the producers’ usual machinations. She wasn’t going to let a jerk go through to the end for our amusement, given that she’d have Ricki to answer to at some point. Smart for her, but it makes for a slightly dull show for us.
We quickly move on to the After the Rose episode, which is not all that shocking either (no matter what ABC tries to tell us). Jef is still nice, Emily is still nice, they’re still together and Jef is moving to North Carolina. All that talk about Emily being willing to uproot for the right guy? Yeah, well, she had a little more of the upper hand in that conversation, which we suspected anyway. Kid! Oh, and they’re getting separate apartments. Emily is a nice girl, people! They’re cute as bugs in a rug. Arie shows up to express some sadness about being the spurned guy, but he’s been talking to Emily and Jef on the phone (!!!) and knowing they’re so happy and in love is helping him heal. Even Arie can’t work up any crazy or lingering venom when confronted with so much cuteness.
It’s all a pretty happy, feel-good installment of “The Bachelorette,” but don’t worry. “Bachelor Pad” will be coming at you on Monday with all sorts of cray-cray.
Did you think Emily made the right decision? Do you think she should have made Arie go through the proposal? Are you going to watch “Bachelor Pad”?