We have spoilers! I mean, other than the show itself spoiling your good mood since Parasite won all those Oscars.
Peter banished 10 women during last week’s double-episode extravaganza that struck fear in the hearts of everyone for whom elitesingles.com isn’t working. I’ve seen lesser bloodbaths in a Saw movie. Tonight he will send home two more under-performers.
Scroll down if you want to be surprised by more than how much cleavage is revealed tonight: Taking the Limo Ride of Shame will be Natasha, who was getting pretty ornery, and—somewhat unexpectedly, although is anything surprising when no one can tell any of these women apart without checking if they’re former pageant contestants—Kelley.
This leaves the Fab Final Four as Madison, Victoria F., Kelsey, and Hannah Ann. Madison seems to have surged forward out of nowhere, like a Jeep Grand Cherokee in a commercial. Maybe she had clever negative marketing like Mike Bloomberg. Apparently she’s a fan favorite, but since I prefer any of the cast in The Good Doctor, I’m oblivious.
Also unusual for Peter’s Bachelor experience, in addition to the number of Jesus lovers who approve of it: This season seems to end right on the tail of the After the Final Rose special. That could mean Peter hasn’t made his choice among the damsels in de dresses, despite the final rose ceremony being taped last November. I suspect Rudy Giuliani is involved.
Tonight we’ll see making out on mountaintops and leaning against buildings, as well as crying in the dark and laughing in Peter’s embrace. The group is in Lima, Peru, where alpacas are as common as wearing sports bras outside the gym is here.
Peter chats with his mom via Skype. He’s growing concerned as the need to make a final decision approaches. “You really, really, really have to be honest with yourself,” Mom advises sagely, adding that he must follow his heart the way he follows the air traffic controller’s directions. But Peter fears he will be blindsided the way he was with Hannah Brown, and like Harvey Weinstein was when they finally arrested him.
Peter joins the girls in their suite. His biggest fear is falling for someone who is not sure this is what they want, so he asks that they be honest with him. My accountant often tells me the same thing.
The girls discuss how to make Peter confident about their feelings. Madison wants a life with him, but wonders what that would be like. Maybe she should spend some time finding out instead of fighting with the other girls and getting mani-pedis.
Madison gets the first one-on-one date. She has a lot in her heart to share with Peter, and wants to ensure they are on the same page, which is likely the one with the copyright information. He’s already calling her Maddy, a good sign. When he moves onto Shmoopy, she’s got this thing sewn up.
Peter is pleased that he can feel so good with Maddy as they fish off a boat and she wraps her legs around his waist. They toast to their second amazing date. She tells him she doesn’t want him to have doubts about her, although she offers nothing to allay that. Peter feels the stress of impending family introductions, and the odds of her having her period during Fantasy Suite time.
The other girls reveal that Madison is very religious. Apparently, she belongs to a faith that mandates tight jeans and making out with strangers. Maybe the Church of the Holy Sexpot? Yet, for all her reassurances that she is being open with Peter, she has not addressed this significant aspect of her life. Why is she holding back? Is she a Satanist, or is it just that everyone associated with this show seems unholy?
The girls also review each of their own relationships with Peter, comparing how much time each has had with him. Ladies, this is not an attorney’s billing system. As with DeMille movies and sex, it’s the quality of the time, not the length. They learn that the next one-on-one goes to Natasha.
That evening, there’s more dancing to some local musicians’ sounds, and then a dinner under the stars. Will this mean they develop an even closer connection, perhaps even becoming adjacent, or will he send her packing?
Madison tells Peter that she can see a future with him after this, barring their need for federal safety-net programs. She finally reveals how religion is her whole life, except those evenings when she just feels like watching MeTV and going to bed. Peter initially seems perturbed, then claims he loves that she has faith. What faith? Can she point to a god or a book or even a religiously affiliated college?
While Peter feels he could be stronger in his own faith, also unnamed, he wants to work on that. Maybe start with worshiping a football team or Rick and Morty. He breathes deeply, then tells Madison he is falling in love with her. They are thrilled to take this huge step toward a three-month engagement and a People cover story.
Peter gives her the rose and what we now presume is a chaste kiss. He looks forward to meeting her family, and maybe sighting a Buddha or a crucifix in their home so he can know a little more about his potential life partner’s inner life.
Even though he is falling in love with Madison, the next day Peter admits he doesn’t want to close off his other relationships. He meets up with Natasha. She remarks that his band-aid is off. He should put some Dermablend on that scar.
They tour Lima, trying on hats and buying stuffed alpacas. Naturally, they come upon some colorfully dressed street performers. Couples on this show never encounter a hit-and-run accident or even a liquidation sale. Meanwhile, Kelsey and Hannah Ann confess that they want Natasha to be denied a rose.
Peter tells Natasha that she has shown him more sides of herself than any of the other girls. She’s the rhombicosidodecahedron to their hexagons. Natasha agrees that there’s a strong connection between them, like the grease to my stove top.
A date card arrives at the suite. Kelsey gets the third one-one-one, leaving the remaining three to date as a group. It’ll be like going to dinner with the Flying Wallendas and not getting a fractured skull.
That night, Peter wonders if he has progressed as far as he should with Natasha. How would you measure that, with a yardstick or an anemometer? He asks her how she feels. She cites their connection, still without meaningful parameters, and how good she feels when she’s with him. I feel good with my laundry done, but I don’t want to marry the Whirlpool.
Does he feel the same, she queries. Peter can see their potential, but is it really all that special? To be fair, no one thought there would be so many successful variations on the original Star Trek. She thinks they have something good going on, but is concerned that several other girls also look good in a bikini.
Natasha wants to know if Peter has thought about a life together with a wife. He has, but not so far as starting a 401-k or deciding what color to paint the powder room. As it turns out, he cannot give her the rose. “I’m so sorry about that,” he says, as if he opened his car door in the Target lot and rammed her shopping cart. It’s just too far into the process for him to fritter away time learning her shoe size and whether she prefers crunchy or puffy Cheetos.
Morning in Lima. The gals are feeling stressed by Natasha’s departure, which underscores that this could end at any time for any of them. Either Peter will send them home or North Korea will fire missiles at South America.
Meeting with Kelsey, Peter says it’s easy to get lost in her eyes. But does he want to shop for large appliances with her? They climb onto ATVs to observe horses and sheep in the mountains. “I like not really knowing where I’m going,” he enthuses, which might be disturbing to future passengers on his plane.
They agree that this was a great date, but Kelsey wonders if she is really who he wants. It’s like having a successful job interview when you suspect the position wasn’t posted until after it was filled.
That night, the other girls observe that Kelsey’s bag is still there. Nevertheless, they also recall the champagne nonsense and her noisome habit of crying when sad. The scene switches to Peter greeting Kelsey happily. She looks lovely, with her smokey eye and Farrah waves enhancing the shine of her veneers. Peter reminds her how next week is a potential hometown visit, so he wants to hear about her family. Too bad she forgot to bring her 23andMe report.
Kelsey says her mom is very sweet and will have baked cookies for Peter. Her dad will not be present, however. They didn’t talk for years after her parents’ divorce, but when she confronted him about it, he didn’t explain himself sufficiently. Then he texted her, and now they’re in touch again again—but her mom doesn’t know because Kelsey wants to set her own terms. That was a a yearlong plotline in Friday Night Lights.
Peter has to keep this secret if he meets her mother. Despite this less than promising start to a potential marriage, he’s inspired by her strength and determination. For her part, she’s been looking for certain qualities in a man she might marry, such as kindness, acceptance, and a solid investment portfolio. She sees Peter as having at least two of these traits, and the windmill story can’t hurt either. He wants her to know he validates that. He will meet Mom in Iowa, but her cookies better live up to his expectations.
Kelsey is grateful that Peter is not put off by her family situation. Where does she think he’s been living, in an episode of Leave it to Beaver? He feels they are exactly where they need to be, in a mature relationship that is not conventional. Unfortunately, that could also describe Will and Grace.
The date card arrives at the suite. Kelley, Victoria F., and Hannah Ann will be sharing Peter as a group, much as one does with Ethiopian food. Kelley is particularly put off at the prospect of competing with those two woman-babies. After all, she is a lawyer, sophisticated and knowledgeable about not answering phone calls from numbers she doesn’t recognize. One of them is destined to go home, and Kelley feels strongly she should not be the one, so it’s as sure as my breaking a fingernail making the bed that she will be.
The gals pack their bags in anticipation of the looming result of the three-on-one. Kelley continues to complains that Hannah Ann is too young, while Victoria is an emotional model airplane made of balsa-wood. The three meet Peter at a hacienda with horses, vineyards, and centuries of rich history. They will not be adding “location shoot for The Bachelor” to their Wikipedia page.
Peter first goes off with Hannah Ann. She immediately starts whining about how difficult this week has been for her. She not only watched a lot of other girls get roses, but she dropped her favorite toothbrush in the toilet. After doing a lot of reflecting, she has written down the reasons she is falling for Peter: He makes time for her (when?), assures her she doesn’t need to be perfect, and purchased tech stock with large market capitalizations.
Meanwhile, an anxious Victoria is losing it, just as Kelley predicted. Kelley is smug about her relationship with Peter, who appears to chat with her next. She tells him she was a little frustrated this week, although she really likes him and things with them add up. Peter seems to be glaring as she chatters about how relationships can be easy-going and fun, a description he resents, as the ratings demand continuing bitterness and acrimony. But he leans in for the kiss.
After this convo, he goes off with Victoria. He reminds her that they parted last time in kind of “a weird spot.” His vocabulary is usually limited to telling people they’re currently third in line for take-off and are expected to be in the air in approximately seven minutes. She snootily says he’s “always in a mood” when they’re together. This makes him feels attacked. She objects to his characterizing her whining that way.
Peter explains that he has doubts because she always pushes him away. The waterworks begin, and he has to mop up. Many marriages are just like this, so she’s ready for her first divorce. Victoria then returns to sit with Kelley, envious that Peter’s relationship with her never involves genuine emotion. Feeling triumphant, Kelley grins like she was just awarded a high rating from Super Lawyers, although winning this show is equally lacking in value.
Peter sits with the three of them. He appears to have made his decision, but then asks to talk with Victoria privately again. He needs a last dose of goat voice before the day is done. As they stand in front of the limo, he tells her sullen face he appreciates what they have, which is mostly lust. He offers her a rose.
“I love what we have,” he tells her. I guess the plane flies him, too. A happy Victoria returns to the suite, apparently no longer upset by his moods.
As Hannah Ann and Kelley see Peter return, they realize he isn’t carrying a rose. Now he must dispense the other. He describes both of their relationships with him as positive in different ways, such as Victoria has larger breasts while Kelley has a rounder behind. But one must be sent home tonight. He gives Hannah Ann the rose. As we walks Kelley to the exit, Hannah Ann bursts into heaving sobs. Maybe some Midol would help.
Kelley seems unsurprised, accepting her dismissal with quiet dignity. The advantage of being an attorney is she can refer Victoria to a good divorce lawyer. She reasons that Peter wants to marry a young girl, not a woman with credit card debt and a classic camel coat. He shouldn’t waste her time unless he pays her a retainer.
Peter assures the final four that he can see himself with any of them. I once got a Valentine’s Day card that said that. Next week, he meets all their parents, siblings, and legal representatives. We also find out that Madison has been saving herself for marriage, while Victoria reenacts the pre-electroschock therapy scene from The Snake Pit.
We will soon learn the substance, or lack thereof, of what Chris tells a Neil Lane ring-clutching Peter about something they “just found out.” Peter gasps and gazes downward in dismay. He expected Bernie to win Iowa.