The Bachelor: Closing Time
It’s finally here, you guys. The end! We made it! I feel like we’ve scaled a great summit together, or cured an incurable disease, or dreamed an impossible dream, or hummed an unhummable song. We did it! Well....almost. There's still the matter of this final episode to get through:
Chris Harrison welcomes us and a live studio audience to our living nightmare! Welcome all!
Nick is in the northern part of Finland, where apparently Santa Claus lives, “which is pretty crazy” Nick assures us. I’m nearly 100% certain that every person on this show still believes in Santa, so I guess I am happy that he gets to see where his hero lives. Although my boyfriend claims that “EVERY Scandinavian country says Father Christmas lives there.” I did NOT know that, but apparently it's all quite heated.
Another thing I did not know, but soon learn, is that Nick’s family is in town! How....fun? I dunno. If they weren’t introduced as his family I’d still know they were related to Nick because they all seem just one harsh word away from bursting into tears. Also Nick doesn't seem that grateful that his family traveled from one arctic wasteland to another.
However, Raven is excited to re-meet Nick’s family! “I know that when you marry someone you also marry their family.” Look, I know what she means and I really don’t WANT to make Arkansas jokes, but this show makes it very difficult sometimes.
The family then sits down to a dinner that I now know they won’t eat, and wine I'm certain they WILL drink.
Nick’s sister (I assume) cannot mask her true feelings at this charade. I kind of <3 her for it.
Side note: Nick’s dad has the odd look of a famous actor who undergoes a lot of makeup to play a role. Like, Eddy Murphy could be under there and Nick’s dad could be an extra in a Klumps movie. Right? Is it just me?
Raven tells Nick’s dad how she loves Nick, and I would like every one of you to just sit back and imagine the first or second time you met your partner’s parents. Think back to your very first time. Can you imagine sitting them down and telling them “I am in love with your offspring?” I have a great relationship with my boyfriend’s parents and I still think it’d be absurd to say something like “I love your son and I’m expecting a proposal. I’m very serious about our relationship and it would be a tragedy if I didn’t express that to you now.” And meanwhile they’d be like “Girl what? We just asked where you wanted to go to brunch.”
Raven continues: “The flame that started, that keeps going strong, has been so effortless.” POETRY, by Raven! If nothing else, I truly believe she has a future as the female Nicholas Sparks.
Nick’s mom takes Nick aside to remind him yet again that this is his FOURTH time doing this, as well as the fact that he was very much in love with Andi and very much in love with Kaitlyn. How many loves can this guy fall into?
Having said everything they need to say and cried their allotted tears, Raven and Nick kiss goodbye, and it’s less that than it is Nick trying to kiss Raven while she backs away.
Back in the house, I love that almost every other sentence out of Nick’s family’s collective mouth is “she could still say no!” They do not have every confidence in him, do they?
Next it’s Vanessa’s chance to meet a disapproving family! She proceeds to tell them about
the first time she threw up in front of Nick their first date, and then she cries. ACE move Vanessa. Meet them on common ground.
Vanessa chats with Nick’s mom, where she’s all “do you think it’s weird that I might dump your son like his last two girlfriends did?” She then tells Nick’s sister that she’d be the first in her family to leave Montreal, so I guess that decision was made.
Basically all of Nick’s family takes him aside to remind him of his abysmal failure at love in the past. While Vanessa is talking to Nick's family about "their journey," a thought slowly dawns on me: Vanessa has zero sense of humor. She’s very serious and well spoken and she’s gorgeous and she seems like a good person, but she is not playful or funny like Raven (or, more to the point, Corinne, who was hilarious).
Nick’s dad starts on about how love is not just about love, it’s about commitment and selflessness, and then breaks down in tears. COME ON VIALL FAMILY. How hard is it to get through a conversation without weeping? Also these people make love sound just terrible. If an alien came down to earth and learned about love from watching The Bachelor, they wouldn’t be able to get past the idea of just WHY is anyone looking for love? It’s just tears and hard work, this show makes it look awful! However, these aliens, whom I’m assuming are perverts, would also probably enjoy the Fantasy Suites week, so in that way they’re just like us humans. Welcome, aliens.
Later Vanessa cries, Nick’s dad hugs her, and I’m as dry eyed as it gets. Vanessa leaves, Nick’s family gathers to YET AGAIN talk about how much he’s failed at love in the past and CRY SOME MORE and I’m......still watching. So I guess who’s the dumb jerk now?
Nick’s dad: “Nick is possibly a few days away from being engaged, and I don’t envy him.” HA. Nor do I!
I’d like to share that every time the show faded to black and played heavy romantic music, I’d turn to my boyfriend and say “wow, powerful stuff," at which point he would sigh heavily.
Back to the show! Chris polls the audience on who will win Nick’s heart, and most people vote for Vanessa, although I know for sure that if he’d polled the audience on if they would prefer watching 3 hours of Corinne outtakes instead of this garbage, the vote would be 100% in the affirmative!
We cut back to Nick and Vanessa meeting up and taking a quaint horseback ride while a local pervert observes them.
While riding their horses, Nick proceeds to remind America why he’s got such a reputation as a creep.
V: I don’t know how to go faster. I’m not sure if I WANT to.
N: Just give him a little squeeze with your thighs. You know how to do that.
GROSS. *Insert the vomit emoji of your choice here.* The date does look pretty, but it’s hard to see clearly through my unrelenting nausea.
These two then stumble upon a hermit’s cabin and force him to entertain them as guests. And oh look, it’s Santa Claus. I’m honestly SHOCKED this show didn’t make more “St. Nick” puns, by the way. That seems to be what passes as high wit around these parts.
Also just what a fun scene on a show for grown ass adults. This show is SO WEIRD!!!!!!! This week they are meeting a fictional (sorry, Nick) children's character and last week they were literally provided sanctioned time for intercourse. I give up trying to figure this show out.
Also turns out that Santa is as much of a perv as Nick.
Vanessa really leans into it. It, specifically, being Santa. “I just want to be next to you, Santa,” she says breathily, and I wonder how embarrassing it must be for Nick to get cuckolded first by the Backstreet Boys and then by Santa.
Some more boring and juvenile shit occurs, and again I’m left desperate to imagine this scene with Corinne instead. She would have straight up got into his lap. Tell me I’m wrong!
These two yahoos then sit outside (in the Arctic Circle, remember!) and Nick does his own version of “are you strong enough to be my man." Specifically: relationships, man aren't they a lot of work? I feel like they’ve had this conversation like 5 times before, and the reason I feel that way is because they’ve actually had this conversation 5 times before. Vanessa is not sure she’s comfortable accepting that Nick also has feelings for someone else. Sorry Vanessa. I’m not comfortable accepting Nick in general.
Nick and Vanessa meet again later that night to talk more about their relationship trouble. Finland keeps up it’s idea of “decoration” as “throw a dead animal on the wall!”
Review this photo of Vanessa crying while Nick tries to kiss her, and tell me that you aren’t chilled to your very bones.
Throughout this whole show there have been commercials for Nick’s illustrious turn on the next season of Dancing with the Stars, which has hosted such luminaries as our current Secretary of Energy. As I’ve said before, Nick can’t dance, and these commercials just bear that out. Also SERIOUSLY WELCOME TO AMERICA, where apparently we can’t get enough of our mediocre white men.
Speaking of! Here’s more Nick! It’s time for his date with Raven! Raven is bright and bubbly and trying not to think too hard about what’s in store. It’s a pretty bad way to approach a relationship, but a much better way to approach a reality show.
I actually gasp when Nick instructs Raven “through here, my love,” while walking. “MY LOVE!” He’s leading her to go ice skating, which seems like less of a fun date than the horseback riding, but what Raven gets in the second act will BLOW Vanessa’s date away. Stay tuned.
These two seem to have a lot more fun together, as evidenced by the fact that neither is openly weeping at the moment. They also have easier and more breezier conversations, and waste no time getting into their favorite position, be it in snow or swamp:
This exchange also occurs:
N: Give me one last favor.....besides looking super sexy and adorable.
R: Oh god. What do you need from me?
Stripped from it’s playful tone of voice when spoken aloud, the above is quite unsettling, don't you agree?
But luckily Nick does something right! THE SECOND ACT:
This is probably the best thing he’s ever done for her, including whatever went down in the Fantasy Suite.
“This is officially the best day of my life! I’m just sorry I had to bone Nick Viall to make it happen.” Raven says just one of those sentences - I’ll let YOU guess which one!
Raven: “I hope my kids with Nick are as cute as these puppies.”
I’m assuming the producers (wisely) knew how bored the audience would be at this point and decided to mollify them with puppies. Smart move, producers!
We then get a few minutes of Raven and Nick talking about their relationship and journey. Nick reveals that he is so stressed he can’t move his neck #romance. Raven does her best to tell Nick that she’ll say yes if he proposes, which is nice because everyone else keeps reminding him that he’ll probably die a spinster.
THE NEXT DAY! The FINAL DAY!
Nick gets a visit from his old friend Neil Lane and selects what I can only assume is yet another engagement ring in a long line of them.
Vanessa is shown, looking beautiful but unsure about it all. Raven is also lovely, but more sure. I look just ok right now, but I am certain (that this is all dumb).
Also, look at how lovingly this guy is gazing upon Chris!
Back in Finland, it’s finally time for a break up and an engagement. A car arrives at the final rose ceremony. We all know that whoever emerges from the car first will be the one who gets dumped, since the show wants to end on an engagement. And who will it be?
I’d know those feet anywhere. It’s Raven. :(
Now that we know he’s not picking Raven, the next few minutes seem awfully cruel. We get Raven saying things like “I think Nick loves me just as much as I love him,” “I have no hesitations,” and “I have all the faith in the world that it’s going to end the way I want it to.” The way she wants it to go COULD actually be her not getting picked. Raven's no dummy.
Raven is also forced to do a little monologue about her feelings for him. The look on Nick’s face is...not promising. And that’s because what’s about to come out of his face is not good.
Specifically: “I just don’t know that I’m in love" and “My heart’s just somewhere else.”
Raven’s accent is so thick that I had to rewind and turn on closed captioning to understand what she says next, which turns out is: “I’ll never regret standing here telling you how I feel.” Aw, Raven. But THEN she turns into a straight up baller.
Nick: I’m going to miss you.
Raven: I know.
OOOOOO that’s incredible. She basically just Han-Solo-ed Nick and managed to not look foolish while getting dumped on national TV. #SHERO
I’ll tell you that my boyfriend was very upset that they never managed to shovel snow off the red carpet. Considering what this show spends on helicopters and hot tubs, you’d think they could have sprung for a shovel or broom or something.
Anyway, Nick says goodbye to Raven, and he is crying 10x more than she is (or has in this whole show, tbh). But once she’s gone, at least now we get something nice to watch, presumably. It's a lot nicer to see someone get relationshipped than get dumped, turns out.
Also, just look at this horror scene.
Against this backdrop, we get to watch Nick declare his love: “I do love you. I am in love with you.”
Vanessa is pretty pleased:
Nick gets down on one knee, pulls out his ring, and asks the questions we’ve all been hoping to hear: “Does this mean my reign of terror on this franchise is finally over? Oh, and will you marry me?”
Vanessa says yes! Of course!
Nick then asks her if she’ll accept his final rose. Having just recently become engaged, it’d be hilarious if she said no, but you remember what I said earlier about Vanessa’s sense of humor?
Instead she says “yes, with all my heart.”
Nick waxes poetic about how great (and unusual) it is to have only one woman in your life, they tell the other that they love them, and then THIS happens:
Nick: “Should we go start our life”
Vanessa: “Let’s go do it. Literally.”
And now it suddenly ALL makes sense! Vanessa is a creep too! And that’s why they BELONG TOGETHER! I’m so happy the season is over and we got our happy, creepy ending.
And Raven - see you in paradise! Stay away from any Chads!