The Bachelorette: Sob stories win over Des in race for a rose

Manisha Krishnan recaps Episode Two


In the real world, a good sense of humour is the way to a woman’s heart.

On The Bachelorette, it’s the opposite. To judge by Episode 2, sharing memories of a messed-up childhood or revealing a non-life-threatening medical condition puts one on the fast track to getting a rose.

The show starts with a one-on-one date between Des and Brooks.

After taking off in Des’ blue Bentley, their first stop is a bridal store. Des and Brooks try on dresses and tuxedos, which Des admits could be “really awkward,” but she’s impressed that Brooks is going with the flow. “I really felt like we were newlyweds,” she says as they grab cake, still in their formal wear.

Then they drive to the famed Hollywood sign where Brooks opens up about his painful past relationship. “I’ll take the chance of getting my heart broken again and again if it means ultimately being with the person I love,” he says. Aww. They kiss.

As night falls, the couple finds themselves in a “shady” area of Los Angeles (there’s some graffiti).

Des drives along a closed road and onto a bridge equipped with a chandelier and private dinner. She chats about her tight-knit family and Brooks gets choked up telling her about his parents’ divorce and abandonment issues with his father.

“What I learned is not to take anything for granted,” he says. Des offers him a rose. The couple hears music playing and out of nowhere appears singer-songwriter Andy Grammer, who puts on a private concert.

I’m making an early prediction — Brooks will be one of the final two bachelors standing.

Back at the Bachelorette mansion turned frat house, it’s time for a group date. The activity of choice? Making a rap music video with Soulja Boy.

Thanks ABC, for giving the audience what they absolutely, under no circumstances, would ever want to see. I basically cringed through this entire segment. Ben, James, Michael and a nearly naked Brandon “spit” solo raps, while the rest of the guys perform a choreographed dance routine.

It went as well as you’d expect it to, but at least Des looked hot in her cut-offs and cropped denim vest.

Come evening, the guys each try to grab some alone time with Des.

While Mikey chats her up, Ben swoops in and steals her away. It’s the second time he’s done this and it irks Mikey.

Ben, meanwhile, talks about his son for a bit before kissing Des. It seems forced, although Ben is pretty confident/arrogant about the connection between them and she does give him a rose.

Brandon, deciding he needs to be more “aggressive,” takes Des aside and barely even asks how her night is going before launching into his own sob story.

His starts with a pretty mundane intro: “I was born and I had a dad and mom like you did.” But then reveals that his father left home at age five and his mother was a drug addict, forcing him to take care of his siblings. It’s not that I don’t have sympathy for the guy, but you’ve got to wonder: Is this really first date appropriate? What ever happened to “What kind of music do you like?”

Des takes soldier Bryden on the next solo date — a road trip where they stop at the beach and an orange grove, do a whole bunch of clichéd activities, and layer on the superlatives to describe how much fun they’re having.

“I don’t think I’ve ever laughed that hard,” says Des at dinner. Bryden does his best to change that, telling her about a truck crash that broke his ribs, neck, and basically almost killed him. He even has hard-copy photographs from the ER handy.

The buzz kill method works though and Des hands over another rose.

On the final pre-rose ceremony evening at the house, Michael seizes the opportunity to tell Des about his Type 1 diabetes. He’s just getting into the nitty gritty of what a normal blood-sugar level should be when Ben interrupts.

I can see why this is frustrating, especially because Ben already has a rose, but I really did not want to hear the end of that diabetes story and I bet Des didn’t either.

Ben makes out with Des again, but when he’s back amongst the other men, they tell him off.

“You’re rubbing some guys in the house the wrong way,” says Michael.

Ben is clearly shaping up to be this season’s villain. It’ll be interesting to see how far he makes it.

Des hands out the remaining roses. Among those going home are Will, the token non-white guy who gets more time in his exit interview than he did in either of the two episodes, and Robert, the ad executive from Arizona.

Next week it looks like there’s girl drama when a woman purporting to be one of the bachelor’s girlfriends shows up on set in a rage.


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