I don’t know what I want out of this season, I really don’t. It’s been quite the roller coaster ride and not the kind that ends with an awfully convenient and contrived Chase Rice concert in suburban Cleveland! Part of me is hoping for a little Deus ex Machina action where Hannah B comes storming back to take Peter’s heart (although no doubt it would descend into more of a Deus SEX Machina given their bygones!); but there’s also a part of me that wants Hannah Ann and Madison to play a high stakes game of sudden death rock, paper, scissors for who doesn’t have to marry Peter at the end. I see both of these scenarios as unlikely but as the girls vie for that final rose, I really think it unwise to take anything off the table. Hometowns. Nice. Let’s jump in!
Hannah Ann – Knoxville, TN
Hannah Ann remains a complete enigma, largely due to the dizzying peaks and precipitous valleys that she displays in her solo interviews talking about Peter. “Our connection will definitely skyrocket today” isn’t really the kind of thing you should be saying at such a late stage in the process, and doesn’t really correspond to her then turning around after some very mediocre axe-throwing and telling Peter that she’s in love with him. I was half expecting Bill Murray to make a celebrity appearance because come on Hannah Ann; we’ve seen all this shit before! Another initial observation: Her accent got about 200 times more Southern the second she set foot in Knoxville.
Hannah Ann’s dad is in the lumber industry, so naturally, the two went axe-throwing during their hometown date? Axe-throwing and the lumber industry are about as synonymous as Big Buck Hunter and the Biathlon in the Winter Olympics. Yes in both instances you have a gun, but one is a grueling test of strength, endurance, speed and skill and the other is some Scandinavian guys on skis shooting targets and then skiing off to shoot some more targets. Similar materials; wildly different objectives. As I understand it, axe-throwing is not the major test of beef and brawn that Hannah Ann was intending, but was concocted for sorority girls looking to let off steam after Saturday morning brunch Mimosa genocides… It’s no wonder Hannah Ann’s dad thought California Peter was more like Charmin the toilet paper than charmin’ the personality trait!
It’s never a good start when the first thing that your boyfriend (who has been verifiably “cheating” on you for months on national television) does in your home is reduce your mother to tears… but Peter could probably make up for it with her dad right? Hannah Ann’s father is a huge trees-guy, who according to his daughter: “If you really want to impress, then you can just name all of the trees in the yard.” My heart almost skipped a beat when I heard this. If you think Peter’s pilot pedigree is impressive to bring home to your family, imagine how Hannah Ann’s dad would have reacted if she had brought me and my hard-earned B minus in my sophomore spring science elective “Trees” back to Knoxville? Yes, the class was far more internal chemistry and less straight identification than I was hoping, but still, you can bet your bottom dollar I still know the difference between a Dorian Birch and a Manchurian Elm. If you don’t want no shrubs for your daughter Mr. Sluss, then at least let me attempt the oft’ forgotten 13th Labor of Heracles and take a stab at identifying the trees in the yard!
Kelsey – Des Moines, IA
Kelsey’s hometown visit got off to a flier with her somewhat misleading refrain “we might get a little dirty doing it” in reference to their activity for the day. That activity was the classic Iowan pastime of wine-making! I like to think that this is a deeply data-driven blog and so I thought I would investigate whether anyone else in the United States was completely blindsided by the mere concept of Iowan wine-making! It turns out I wasn’t the only one blissfully unaware of Iowa’s vineyards (including many Iowans themselves), as the Google Trends spike clearly illustrates! Some of my favorite search queries that spiked yesterday were: “Is there corn in Iowa wine?” “Is Iowa wine shit?” and “What is Iowa wine?” Seems like a citizenry of seasoned sommeliers over there!
My suspicions about the legitimacy of the wine operation were peaked when they strolled out of the vineyard with a bottle of wine that they had supposedly crushed just minutes earlier? The words of legal juggernaut Vincent Gambini, the eponymous star of classic early 90’s flick My Cousin Vinny, immediately sprang to mind: “Perhaps the laws of physics cease to exist on your stove! Were these magic grapes? Did you buy them from the same guy who sold Jack his beanstalk beans?” I’m no fermentation expert but I think it takes a little longer than a couple of hours to make wine… Maybe stick to champagne Kelsey?
Kelsey told Peter she loved him. He didn’t reciprocate. He said: “I love hearing that.” I love lamp would have been a more affectionate response. Oof.
It’s certainly been a big couple of weeks for apps in Iowa! The real question I wanted an answer to during Kelsey’s hometown was which recent Iowa app iteration caused more of a stir: the Iowa Caucuses mobile app that was unable to correctly tally votes; or Kelsey’s favorite crispy wonton app, and Iowa staple (?) the crab Rangoon? I think there is no shadow of a doubt the goons are going to win this battle! Iowa, the home of fine wines and crab Rangoons! Who woulda thunk it?
Madison – Auburn, AL
I’m not sure if Peter is interested in pursuing any higher education opportunities, but if he was considering Auburn, he can check it off the list of college tours he will need to go on! I think that all Bachelor contestants should have to take The Bachelor to their college town as well as their hometown. For one, Hannah Ann would be able to hand in some of her assignments for her freshman spring semester, and imagine how great it would be if contestants had to take their dates to their former favorite restaurants? I would love nothing more than to see the looks on the faces of the Aladdin Crown Pizza boys if I were to return to New Haven under such circumstances, or the looks of disgust on the show producers’ faces after I opted to have a romantic candlelit dinner at Main Garden over the conspicuously classier Barcelona!
I was getting major Troy and Gabriella vibes during the basketball scenes, although I was a little thrown off by Charles Barkley effectively leveling death threats towards Peter from the jumbotron if he didn’t treat Madi right! The Auburn head coach looks like he could beat the ever-loving shit out of Peter as well, so it was not surprising that she ended up getting a rose given the physical intimidation he was subjected to down south! Peter’s entire demeanor around Madison is completely different from the other girls. He’s giggly; he does this wannabe-cool-shoulder-roll walk; and they seem to have an excellent time together. Let’s see how Ginuwine Peter really is when it comes to Fantasy Suites and her desire, or lack thereof, to ride his pony!
To dinner. I initially thought Mr. Prewett was Madison’s younger brother, but then he started speaking exclusively in incredibly corny assistant coach idioms and his paternal colors were revealed. I was half expecting him to begin his prayer with “Great moments are born from great opportunities” or break into Al Pacino’s inches speech during his 1-on-1 with Peter. Probably for the best he didn’t start lecturing Peter on inches given his high profile windmill exploits, but the point still stands! It appears as though this coaching jargon has rubbed off on his wife also, who boldly claimed that both Peter and Madison “have greatness in your future.” I sincerely hope that Mrs. Prewett is not in charge of the pregame pump-up speeches for the Tigers… If she is it might explain their lone SEC conference title in the past 21 years!
If Madison loves church so much, you would’ve thought for hometowns they could have at least slipped in Eric’s homecoming anthem “Give Me Back My Hometown…” Alas, no such luck for The Bachelor fans who only watch for the country music. Do better please producers.
Victoria F – Virginia Beach, VA
After last night’s episode of The Bachelor, interrogators at Guantanamo Bay have a new arrow in their quiver… A recording of Victoria F saying: “How are we supposed to move forward from this” on loop will have those poor inmates spilling state secrets the likes of which Area 51 can only dream of. The thing is, their date actually seemed to go pretty well! They cruised around the beach for a bit and then went to one of those only-on-The-Bachelor one song concerts with Hunter Hayes. The entire time I was gearing up for the massive “SIKE, I used to date Hunter Hayes as well,” but alas, Hunter dodged that bullet despite being a self-professed wanter of crazy! The song he played contains the lyrics “it ain’t right if you ain’t lost your mind, I don’t want easy, I want crazy” – this applies to Victoria more violently than Lori Laughlin applies to her kid’s colleges.
Then there was the bombshell. I find it somewhat hard to believe that this mysterious and blurry Marissa character was acting entirely in good faith when she told Peter that Victoria F was crazy, but does Peter not already have sufficient evidence to heed her warning? During their pre-dinner exchange, Peter did ask Victoria of the best questions of this season so far: “Do you ever fight for anything that you really want?” She responded just like Shaggy taught her: “It wasn’t me.”
Victoria’s words and actions are about as divergent as Rush Limbaugh and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (oh wait…) She claims to want to work towards solutions, but then cries and disappears and moans and complains. “I’m just disgusted right now,” “I’m so ready to just like not.” Obviously Peter is poorly equipped to deal with her shenanigans but come on; did the crazy hot matrix teach you nothing Peter??!! (Also wow just watched this video again and it’s fuckin’ awesome – You can add Victoria F squarely into “The Danger Zone” to join redheads, strippers, anyone named Tiffany and hairdressers!) I wish Peter would have just said fuck it and at least booty called Marissa in Virginia Beach to really stick it to Victoria, but he was probably embarrassed by his room at the Motel 6 so decided against it.
The major redeeming quality for Victoria F was how cute and hilarious her family was! Her grandmother can give me Nana kisses whenever she wants because she’s absolutely adorable and the rest of them seemed like very down to earth, fundamentally good people as well. Victoria also shares absolutely zero physical characteristics with any members of her family… I don’t want to throw around the A-word (adopted) too much or the M-word (milkman), but just pointing it out!
My major takeaway from the rose ceremony was largely outfit-centric. Victoria F and Kelsey wearing the same shade of green is a wardrobe malfunction the likes of which I haven’t seen since Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake’s 2004 Super Bowl performance. Madison’s get up was quite something also. Ultimately it came down to the two Green Goblins and we all know who emerged Victorious. Kelsey came on strong this season after a champagne-soaked start. She’ll go back to Iowa, eat some Rangoons, play some ping-pong and will be good as new in no time. For the remaining girls, it’s a trip down under. 7.1% of Australia’s electricity is windmill-derived. Expect those numbers to spike next week during Fantasy Suites!
Best of luck to Hannah Ann, Madison and Victoria F – may the best woman win!
Til’ next week people