Bachelorette Des Recap: Home Sweet Home Town Dates
We’ve made it through eight weeks of one girl’s amazing journey to find love, and now there’s only one more thing to do before Desiree forgoes all individual room keys in lieu of exotic fantasy suites. You guessed it! It’s time to head to the final four home towns of Shirtless Zak, Ponyboy, Chris and Brooks! I have to say that I always look forward to the entertaining ramblings courtesy of some wacked-out family member or nosy neighbor, but that didn’t happen this season. And Des’ brother was even back in the picture! Each date was an exact replica of the one before, which resulted in two hours of little to none action sequences or emotional breakdowns.
But it did have its moments.
The following information you are about to read is of personal opinion. However, if you or someone you liked on Twitter happen to personally know, sort of know, is friends with the nail stylist or bowing instructor of someone who is obsessed with the fictional life and devastating death of Matthew Crawley like me and looks exactly like one of the contestants on the show…none of this is personal and I’m sure they are all lovely people.
Home town dates always start off the same way: a dude contemplates his future while surrounded by nature. He stands or sits or pulls a Mesnick on a balcony, wondering (or perhaps sketching through the process) how a person can actually fall in love in a matter of days? It is Mother Earth who provides sanctuary for this confusing time.
Zak contemplated in a Dallas gazebo. Ponyboy chose a cactus garden somewhere in Scottsdale. Chris deliberated in the mossy woods of Oregon while Brooks found refuge in a Utah meadow. Despite the varying difference in environment, Des greeted each beau with a squeaky salutation before running and jumping in their arms. #trademarkjillianharris
After sketching a few circles on the back of a napkin, and Des’ run-n-leap into his arms, the couple settles down on a bench for a quick recap of what’s been going on since they last saw each other. Zak launches in to an extremely random and detailed dream about how he and Des were on a beach and that they were melting and then they started eating ice crystals right before a bunch of kids scrambled towards them. Des and I attempted to hop on board wherever this crazy train was leading us, but I just wasn’t feeling the cultural significance of including so many details. I decided to mentally veg out and appreciate the lack of tangerine hue in his skin. He must be toning down the tan for the sake of the family. I bet he has a brother who figuratively busts his balls every time he comes home with an orange glow. I bet that brother and I would get along. He sounds snarky!
My mental escapade was interrupted when I noticed that Zak had hopped a fence and was running down the street away from Des. He quite literally…hopped a fence.
“He must be going to take his shirt off,” I thought as random b-roll footage of a squirrel filled the screen.
I was wrong. He first hurdled a fence and then ran a 40-yard-dash sprint to obviously show-off, hoping that Des would be reminded of his athletic side before coming around the bend in the family snow cone truck.
I absolutely love snow cones. The fact that Des squirted all the different syrups into one cone was a bit on the reckless side. I’m a snow cone purist you see. I’ve never developed the palate for kamikaze recipes. I have been, and will always be, firmly planted in the red and purple flavor camps.
As predicted by Zak’s dream, millions of kids begin racing toward the van like a bunch of ants piling out of a kicked bed. #circlingback They were everywhere and Des had a look of extreme terror. For a moment, I was confused by the white snow cones and assumed these kids were ordering vanilla or coconut flavored treats. Amateurs. “GO FOR ANYTHING WITH BERRY IN THE TITLE” I screamed at the television. But she kept handing the plain ones out. Then I assumed that these were the gluten-free kids with special instructions that said their moms wouldn’t let them have sugary sweets and they were forced to eat plain ice.
Moments later I saw that the Shirtless Zak Family Snow Cone Van had the flavor squirts ON THE OUTSIDE OF THE TRUCK. I was speechless. I could barely contain my excitement until my friend Ann confirmed that these are a thing now and I should just calm down. My how we’ve come a long way from the days of Snoopy.
So now we have a million kids fighting to get to the flavor station, a teacher who is thinking , “I knew I should have worn that statement necklace with this outfit” and a bachelor who is MIA.
But there is a penguin mascot and he is full of energy, dancing among the line of kids with sticky mouths and fingers. Des uses context clues and quickly figures out that Zak is inside the suit. Ten bucks says he’s naked in there. #penquincommando
It’s time to meet the family! Zak ushers Des into the house where she is attacked by his mom Maryann. She is about as energetic as Zak and immediately wants details, beginning with the first time they met. The family gathers around the living room for the romantic story.
Des: “Well. Your son stepped out of the limo without a shirt on. And stayed that way. The entire night.”
Zak: “Yep. I said, ‘Will you accept these abs?’”
Mom: “AND YOU KEPT HIM?”
Sister: “You’re such a tool.”
Brother: “So. You were that guy.”
Oh yes. I would fit in with Shirtlesses just fine. And you know this family is all about the daiquiris. Let’s face it. Isn’t daiquiri just a fancy word for adult snow cone? FIRE UP THE BLENDER MARYANN!
They sit down to eat, Lord Supper style, as Zak counts on two hands how many times he was nearly nude in front of Des. Maryann dances in her chair, the dad is surprisingly mute, the sister rolls her eyes and the brother refrains from actually busting Zak’s balls. It was glorious.
In a nutshell, everyone loves Des. Maryann approves. The sister is sufficiency satisfied that he has moved on beyond the friend zone. The only way the Shirtlesses know how to properly induct Des into the family (other than snow cone duty of course) is through the medium of music. Buckle up kids. Zak has written a song and his siblings are going to provide the vocals while he accompanies them on the acoustic guitar.
Roughly 200 miles south on I-35, He Who Must Not Be Named sits at the bar of a seedy honky tonk, smiles at the camera and takes a shot of the Mexican tequila smuggled in from his promotional gig in Tijuana. They say…
Des cries during the song. We’re led to think it’s because she is overcome by emotion, but later learn that it’s because she’s just not feeling it for Zak—even with those set of abs.
To make matters worse, Zak takes out a small token box on his Mama’s back porch and explains to her that he’s been carrying it around since Atlantic City. It’s a whimsical container I would probably carry Advil in, but Zak chooses to hide a diamond “promise” ring on the inside.
He whispers that he loves her and hands the ring over. Des scrambles to shove it back in the box and kisses him before he realizes that he’s just secured the final nail in the coffin.
Des greets Ponyboy with the jump and twirl. He immediately begins attacking her face with aggressive kisses that seemed forced and unnatural. Something seemed off. He sits on the ground, careful not to stain his pink shirt, khaki shorts and boat shoes as Desiree joins him, adjusting her non unity scarf so she won’t inadvertently choke herself during make out sessions. He talks about his family and how this is the first time his dad will be at his mom’s house.
They leave to go pick up his mentally handicapped sister Melissa at her house. He prepared Des (and us) for a very loud and exciting reunion, which was accurate. I have to admit I was expecting a huge hug, but I don’t think Melissa is much of a hugger. She prefers to hold hands. The meet-n-greet was a sweet exchange. The only time I got nervous was when Ponyboy took the curve leading up to his parents’ house going about 40 miles per hour. You can stay golden while maintaining a responsible speed Ponyboy. Slow down.
Everyone was excited to see both Ponyboy and Melissa. Once again, the entire family rallied around the wonder that is Desiree.
Ponyboy: “This is my Mom and my Dad. This is my sister. There’s Dallas and Darry. Sodapop and Two-Bit. Everyone? This is Des”
The dad, wearing a Harrison original purple and white gingham pearl snap, pulls Des aside and asks her if she believes in angels. She says yes. He asks if she has ever seen one. I begin to recoil behind my couch cushion, nervous as to where this conversation is going.
Dad: “You have seen an angel. Melissa is our family’s angel.”
Des and I dissolve into a puddle of tears.
After admitting to his mom that he’s falling for Des (she cries) Ponyboy takes a bold approach. He takes Des by the face and tells her that he loves her before passionately making out in the driveway. Then he shouted that he loved her before making out in the driveway. Then he said it again, and again and again.
I think he’s trying to convince himself.
Instead of writing a poem, we find Chris dutifully picking wildflowers for his jump-n-greet with Des. He takes her to the Little League ballpark so they can play a friendly game of catch. Chris insists they wear under eye black to protect their vision from the overcast glare. He writes something with a white paint pen on each of hers.
Des: “What did you write?”
Chris: “Heart Des.”
Des: “I heart Des? So cute!”
Chris: “No. Just heart Des.”
Chris: “Because your eye is right there.”
Des dissolves into a fit of giggles. Just like the dozens of other dates who have stood on this exact pitcher’s mound. #workseverytime
They throw and catch and run bases. For some reason Des gives him a piggyback ride to the outfield to retrieve a ball. They take a time out for a picnic lunch on home plate. After dining on Twinkies and assorted meats, Des pulls out a sketch book that depicts their time together on this love journey.
1. Why did her drawings look like something from an elementary school art show?
2. She totally janked this idea from Shirtless Zak. I bet he is TICKED!
Chris drives her to his parents’ house. Lather, rinse, repeat from the two dates before. Everyone loves Des. She thought she could easily fit in with his family. Blah, blah, blah. Chris’ dad George asks Des if she’s like a back adjustment down stairs in his chiropractic office and she of course obliges because A.) It’s the first time you’re meeting your boyfriend’s family so you kinda, sorta have to say yes and B.) we need something quirky to happen in this episode or we’ll all tune out so we can try to beat level 67 on Candy Crush.
Hello Dr. George. Why yes, I’m totally cool with lying face down with my butt in the air so you can crack my bones! Have at it!
It really wasn’t as bad as it could have been. In previous “scenes from the next episode” we did see Des upside down in some sort of chiropractic torture device while Dr. George tucked her shirt in so America would be staring at her whale tale. I silently thanked the producers for editing that part out.
But nothing could have prepared me for what was coming next.
Chris and his dad discuss Desiree’s ability to join the family, while Chris gets an adjustment. IN HIS NOSE.
Dr. George: “So son. I hear you really like this girl.”
Chris: “She’s wonderful Dad.”
[Dr. George pulls out his trusty balloon apparatus and begins stuffing the deflated rubber up his son’s nasal cavity. Lincee stares, confused as to what is happening.]
Dr. George: “Is she a strong woman?”
Chris: “Yeah. She’s been on her own since she was 18-years-old.”
[Dr. George begins blowing up the balloon with a blood pressure cuff pump. Remember, the balloon is the same one that is INSIDE HIS KID’S NOSE. Lincee begins to gag at the sight of Chris gagging. I have it on high authority that she threw up a little in her mouth after hearing a sickening crack from the general nasal area.]
Dr. George: “wah, wah, wah, wah. Wha!”
Chris: “wah. Wah, wah, wah wah.”
[The voices of the father son duo have morphed into the familiar tone of Charlie Brown’s teacher. The biochemistry in Lincee brain is unable to first hear the sounds issuing forth from her television and then translate them into meaningful sentences because she is horrified by the camera angle that has a clear angular view of the snotty discharge protruding from Chris’ nostril that is simultaneously bubbling out of his nose, as well as clinging to the popped balloon in a long, mucus line.]
The exchange ended with a hearty blow into a Kleenex.
What. Just. Happened?
I may never recover. Truly. Who in their right mind would let their chiropractic father ADJUST THEIR NOSE WITH A BALLOON APPARATUS on national television? Disgusting. Come on Chris, get your head in the game — it should be easier now that it’s clear.
SALT LAKE CITY
Brooks’ date ended up being the exact same date as the previous three, excluding the freaky chiropractic nose adjustment. I’ve decided to give you the highlights in beta form.
Meadow contemplating. Run and greeting. Wine and cheese picnicking. Feelings exploring. Paper rosing. Memory Lane walking. Romantic canoeing. Boat tipping. Des laughing. Brooks chaffing. Parents hugging! Siblings smiling. People multiplying. Statement necklacing. Mom’s blessing. Brother’s blessings. Sister questioning. Driveway kissing.
Let the record show that the best part about this home town date was that all 90 of Brooks’ family members wore name tags and were color coded by family. #awesome
I have to admit I was ready to see some heads roll when Desiree’s brother Nathan came strutting up onto the scene. I pictured him high fiving Chris Harrison for being generally awesome, showing the ABC intern his new artwork on his right forearm and then making the four remaining guys curl up into the fetal position using only his words.
That didn’t happen.
Basically, Des hasn’t seen Nathan since her own home town date made a tremendous turn for the worse when he questioned Sean’s integrity. I’m pretty ABC was willing to compromise when Des’ negotiated a quadruple per diem in exchange for some on-camera one-on-one time with her brother.
They exchanged pleasantries, but you could tell that Nathan was just itching to get in the heads of the four remaining suitors. Des answered with a great big, “NO WAY,” checked her watch to see if the mandated 30 minutes were up and then ushered him out the door. #majorletdown
Our Host Chris Harrison
Harrison sits down with Desiree and tries to get her to tell him something other than, “everyone loved me” in regard to the home town dates. After suffering through some rough recap, he reminds her that she said just last week that she loved Brooks. She giggled and then admitted again that she is in love with Brooks even though he is the only one who hasn’t said it back. PS: She’s falling in love with Chris too.
What are you doing Mike Fleiss? Am I supposed to be going down this rabbit hole, only to be tricked by your editing at the end? I’m so confused. And there’s 20 minutes left in the show! What are we supposed to do for 20 minutes?
Excited, I remembered that Nathan was lurking in the background of the hotel where Harrison was escorting them men up to the roof. I begged Nathan to jump in the elevator and see if he could rattle Chris with vicious rhetoric. (my guess is no) or get violent with Ponyboy between floors nine and 12.
But he just lurked. #courtmandatedrestrainingoder
Des understands that this is going to be a hard rose ceremony because all of the guys are head over heels in love with her (even though Brooks doesn’t say it…she can FEEL that he loves her) and none are expecting to go home. It’s even harder because the hotel is so cheerful with its primary color decorations.
She begins by telling the line-up that the week has been amazing and that she has strong feelings. She gets a little choked up before quickly handing buds to Brooks, Chris and Ponyboy.
Zak looks stunned. Des confesses that she was not feeling it and tearfully hands the ring back to him because she doesn’t think it’s appropriate for her to keep it. She keeps the dainty box because it’s a cute way to store Altoids in her purse.
In a rare scheduling twist, ABC is airing Men Tell All next week instead of the fantasy dates. I smell drama!
What about you? Were you surprised that Des let Zak go? Is Brooks the one to beat? Or is Chris? Were you upset that Des’ brother didn’t get to intimidate his future brother-in-law? Sound off in the comments.
All about the shame, not the fame,