The Bachelor Finale: The Last Man Alive on Earth
It's the Bachelor finale!!!
First, a little mea culpa. The Bachelor, as they say, waits for no person. So the old maxim goes: It will air whether your life is v. normal and things are chill or whether you are going through the most disruptive few months of your life. There’s been a mystery afoot, and that’s the case of the missing last few recaps. They are somewhere around here, no doubt, but they’re buried under piles of life and bullshit so deep that they’ll likely never see the light of day. I regret that I missed some recaps, though I’ll always come back to you, Bachelor Nation.
So let's get to it! The Bachelor finale is here and I'm sorry to report that Arie is still the Bachelor! I had campaigned for a mid-season swap out, but ABC execs don't have my vision.
So we have Arie, a man who is so boring that he’s outclassed at every level by this line of Aerie underwear....
...and he can't decide between two human women that have voluntarily decided to be in the same room as him. We all on the same page?
The finale, which I genuinely should NOT be recounting in case I'll be operating heavy machinery later, is extremely historic television about which we shall one day tell our children. Or so Chris Harrison keeps popping up and informing us.
Basically, Arie spends the first hour of the show wandering dumbly around Peru while narrating about his man feelings. It’s so hard because he’s in LOVE WITH TWO WOMEN and both of them have breasts so that’s four breasts he has to contend with and WHAT MAN could decide given those options?
First at bat is Lauren, who is still here! She's been a calming presence on the show, and she's also made it much easier to recap this show because there's almost nothing to transcribe anymore!
Arie’s family is in the mix as well, and I’m deeply surprised that they continue to claim him as their own after everything he's done. Is there an age limit to placing a son in a wicker basket amongst the willows of a riverbank, Moses-style? Asking for a friend of Arie's family.
Lauren manages to nearly make almost one whole facial expression during this episode. It’s quite a leap for her, but that's what love does: changes you deeply.
It’s quite difficult to recap this episode as barely anything is happening. When I think that we could be enjoying an emotional Peter grapple with his sexy feelings and also maybe taking off his shirt to soak up his tears (NEVER FORGET), I am livid. But also deep into my second glass of wine so I'm feeling everything quite strongly at the moment.
Next up! It’s Becca! I know it’s Becca because she’s taller and has darker hair. She talks more, too, but it’s all about the same nonsense, so who can even keep track? Maybe in later scenes they’ll make them wear name tags so I can keep everyone straight.
Editor's Note: I have a well-worn tradition of smoking weed to make The Bachelor more enjoyable and here’s where things start losing their narrative thread, just FYI and FTR and ROFL.
Both couples amble aimlessly around the country, where they have the typical getting-to-know-you conversations one has when one is in the honeymoon phase of a relationship: “say, I know you’re in love with me and this other girl but when are you going to decide between us and stop being nearly engaged to both of us at once no pressure or anything!” Ah, c'est l'amour!
Also there’s a lot of talk about “this journey” which as they happen to be traveling right now is REALLY hard to follow. I doubt the typical audience of this show has a strong grasp on the variance of metaphor.
Lauren and Arie travel to Macchu Piccu, where everything is “crazy,” “insane” and “unbelievable.” This show is like the opposite of a guidebook in that I want to visit absolutely no place where these yahoos have traipsed. Also - is being basic an airborne disease? If so....people of Peru: take caution!!!
I ask myself the same question as always: How much can one person talk about love? In fact how can three people talk about love as much as they do on this show? If I were an alien sent down from Heaven to figure out what love meant and I was only given The Bachelor as source material (a thought experiment I play with every season, btw), I would conclude that love was some sort of thing you had to endure in order to go on an island vacation. But also...would I be wrong? I'll fall in love with ANY of you in order to get the opportunity to park myself on a beach somewhere.
Becca also gets her chance to enjoy the banal company of a mediocre white man. I’m sure she has met another man in her life...surely she has! So doesn’t she know she could choose one of them?
The rest of their time in Peru is taken up with dates and talking closely with one another's face and sticking tongues down one another's throat. But nothing gold can stay, and pretty soon it’s DECISION TIME! It's just so crazy how every Bachelor manages to make one of the biggest decisions of their lives JUST as the finale is about to air. What are the odds and all that and so forth and so on?
Arie selects some diamond ring and declares “SHE’ll love it.” So we have our first clue.
And then it's finally here.
The moment we’ve all been waiting for The moment we’ve all been sitting by passively and letting happen to us! It’s the proposal!
It’s a truth universally acknowledged that whoever gets out of their limo first is the “runner-up,” so to speak, and this honor goes to Lauren. Sorry, Lauren.
The cruelest thing is that they make her give her little speech about how much she loves Arie (which is honestly the most words she’s ever strung together on this show), and then we proceed on to her scheduled on-air dumping.
She doesn’t take the breakup well, though who can tell with that one. She promises that she thinks Arie is making a mistake. REMEMBER THIS THIS IS FORESHADOWING WE'LL BE BACK TO THIS!!!
So after those “fireworks,” it’s a relatively calm affair when Becca arrives on time to her own proposal. She says yes, though really she didn’t have to because, again, the world is full of heterosexual men. The two newly engaged lovebirds discuss getting her knocked up as soon as possible and I’m nearly positive Arie has a pamphlet of Scottsdale real estate shoved somewhere in his pants pockets.
OH WAIT NOT SO FAST! There’s more to the story! We get a rare glimpse after the engagement, with these two crazy kids just bein’ silly and posing in various athleisure wear and making pizza because apparently there aren’t any delivery places in Scottsdale? I dunno.
So this is all very unusual, neigh, unprecedented, but it's all because we’re building up to one last final punch in Bachelor Nation’s collective gut: Arie just can’t get over Lauren, the nearly silent woman who has so transfixed his consciousness with her general blondness and surprising beverage condiment decisions. NEVER FORGET!!!
In fact, Arie just can’t shake her off and so he has decided, very reasonably, to break up with his one TV girlfriend for the other. But not before we as a Bachelor Nation are forced to endure what feels like 15 hours of him breaking up with Becca. Much is made of the fact that this is the first “unedited live footage” ever aired on TV and truly, it is footage that ought to give every reality show editor a huge increase in salary. They are really doing god's work.
Becca tries to extricate herself as respectfully from the situation as she can, which is actually impressive because I’ve seen some of the things she was willing to do to be on this show. There’s also lots of crying, and lots of Arie sitting nearby while crying is happening around him.
Because god hates us and apparently we did something very wrong, we are quickly promised/threatened with ANOTHER NIGHT OF THIS BULLSHIT. Arie is like this cold that I’ve been battling for the past week: just when I think it’s almost out of me, I’ll spasm with coughs and genrally feel unpleasant. Actually...that’s dead on. Arie is the virus in all of us.