This week's episode of The Bachelor was fairly tame compared to the mystery guests, catfights and dramatics of the previous four, but it's evident that Ben is starting to take each girl a bit more seriously, though some more than others: can you blame him for seeming hooked on Courtney after she takes him skinny dipping?! Read on for a full recap!
Ben brings the remaining women to a beautiful resort in Vieques, Puerto Rico; the perfect location for the show with its lush greenery and multiple hot-tubs and pools. His first date is with Nikki, the laid-back brunette divorcee, and he lays the charm on thick: transporting her around in a helicopter and attempting to impress her with his Spanish speaking skills. First stop: sno-cones in the city square! Romantic. A torrential downpour could have put a damper on the day, but perenially optimistic Ben turns it into an opportunity to walk around barefoot on the cobblestones. Eventually, they decide to go buy new - dry! - clothes. Ben opts for a look that's half innocuous tourist and half young Colonel Sanders, proudly declaring: "I feel like I've got a little bit of Latin swagger!" Sorry, Ben. A linen outfit and white fedora does not a lothario make.
Nikki is fun, if not slightly cheesy, and Ben seems at ease around her. But again we see that one most of his one-on-one dates, there's little spark or chemistry: they mostly revolve around trying to do wacky things, and then a deep discussion about their past over dinner. On their walk, they 'happen' to see a wedding service proceed out of a nearby church, and have a requisite eye-lock romance moment. The date concludes with the pair sipping wine and discussing her divorce and history, and he gives her the date rose. Now, for the group date!
A huge baseball fan, Ben and his group dates ladies (Lindzi, Jennifer, Kaci B., Emily, Rachel, Courtney, Jamie, Blakeley and Casey S.) compete for his affection on the field. Host Chris Harrison comes to inform them that after the game is a romantic beach party with Ben, but not everyone gets to go: they're being split into two teams, and the winners get the beach party. Since there are nine women, Ben has to choose one who will play on both teams and automatically gets to come to the beach party - the lucky lady is Lindzi.
Spoiler alert: the red team are the victors (Casey, Jennifer, Kacie and Courtney), and the blue team returns to the hotel with their tails between their legs as yet another helicopter lands on the field to bring the five winners to the beach party. Blakeley, who at one point yelled "I hope you guys throw up!" at the red team, cries over the loss, as does Jennifer, albiet slightly less gracefully than Blakeley.
The beach party is very tame: wicker furniture around small fires, and lots of one-on-one time for the ladies. Kacie B., in all her curly haired glory, get some coveted conversation time with Ben and he tells her she's got the ability to make him open up, which is music to her ears. She listens and sympathizes with his love fears, and he rewards her with the date rose. Courtney seems concerned, and steals him away for some oceanside kissing.
His next date-venture is with Elyse, who seemed very emotional before the date even began. It seems she's been hurt pretty badly in the past: a broken engagement, and various letdowns. She confesses that she missed her best friend's wedding AND quit her job to be on The Bachelor, which I personally think is too big an admission for her to lay on Ben because it implies pressure, even if that's not her intention. Also, what does it say about a person who is willing to give up on things that are crucial to her own happiness and sense of fufillment in life? A career, your best friend's wedding - all to have a chance at marrying a man you haven't met who's dating multiple women? Tsk, tsk!
They spend time on a luxury yacht, mostly talking, and then a candlelit dinner, mostly talking. He picks up the rose and launches on a speech about how he liked her from the moment he saw her but his relationships with the other girls are already so progressed that he doesn't think he and Elyse would be able to catch up. She's visibly crushed, and you can tell she thought the rose was a certaintey. Lesson learned: don't spend an entire date talking about your past, acting emotional and clingy. You'll get sent home!
"I feel like I'm winning." Courtney is still very confident in her ability to snag Ben, and sure enough, she surprises him by sitting in her bathrobe, waiting to bring him skinny dipping. Hook, line and sinker! Smart move, too - it happened the day before the rose ceremony.
During the cocktail party, Ben chats with redhead (and his vote for best kisser in the house) Jennifer, and Blakeley, who has decided to confess her feelings and reveal that she has deep feelings for him. Unfortunaltey, she makes multiple comments that belay her low self-esteem, which is shocking because she is a beautiful woman who seemed very confident. He does seem a bit shocked, but is happy that she opened up to him. It could have been a last-ditch attempt to save her spot in the house, but it worked - Ben had been unsure but said he did a "180" after her speech.
Emily, who made what could have been a critical error last week by airing her Courtney greivances to Ben, was given another shot. Well - she blew it again. Right before the rose ceremony, she has a private talk with him where she once again drags up the topic, and opines about how Courtney is two-faced - at one point even calling her a "weirdo". Ben seems put off, and relieved when the talk ends.
Jennifer is the unlucky woman this week, meaning she will not be joining the group on their next location in Panama City - what Ben calls "one of the most glamorous cities in the world." The preview shows exciting one-on-one dates, as well as drama with Casey S., who seems to be on the recieveing end of some really bad news, and Ben appears that he might be catching on to Courtney's game. Stay tuned for next week's recap!