The Bachelorette Watch: London Calling

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Nick Ray / ABC

Eight lucky bachelors meet Emily at Stratford-upon-Avon on a group date. Some of men embrace the opportunity to become thespians for the day, acting in scenes from Shakepeare's famous "Romeo and Juliet."

First thing’s first: I feel guilty mentioning The Clash in the same sentence as The Bachelorette, so let’s all pretend it’s a World War II reference or a euphemism for a drunk phone call from our friends in Old Blighty begging us to rid their country of the teeming hoards of douchebags we exported. Tough luck, London! You taxed our tea and sent us the Osbournes, consider the scrum of skanks retribution. Oh who are we kidding, there are plenty of germs to go around. Especially from Emily who has some cold germs that she is more than willing to share with the 10 remaining bachelors.

Let’s see who set off the air raid sirens this week:

Worst Use of London’s Tourism Dollars: Whatever money London’s tourism board spent to bring The Bachelorette to London paid off in spades when Emily described the town as “old” and “cold.” Adding insult to expensive injury, pro-trainer Ryan described the bustling metropolis as a backdrop for Emily to grow her feelings for him. So basically he’s calling the seat of British government a garden of gross.

First Date Card: Sean is very forgettable, in the sense that I keep forgetting his name, his face, his very existence. Yet Emily gives the good, clean-living Christian the first London date card. They have rented a double-decker bus, or as they call it in London, a bus, for their tour of the city. During the excursion, Sean acts like an obnoxious American (“Goooooood morning, London!”) and Emily reads cue cards (“This is West-Mint-Ster Abbey.”)

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Biggest Foot in Mouth: Back at the hotel, Kalon reapplies his facial lip gloss and sticks his foot in his mouth announcing that pretty much any date with Emily is going to be a group date: You, her and Ricki. Jef stares at him blankly before asking Kalon the only rational question: Why are you here? Duh, because his people sent him from their planet to meet women and breed, hence the overwhelming interest in reproducing his species. Jeeze, Jef, pay attention.

Speaker’s Corner: Sean takes part in a London tradition of standing on a street corner hollering incomprehensibly. He announces that he is seeking an “eternal type of love” like a Steve Winwood or Richard Marx type of love. Emily looks wildly uncomfortable, but she interviews that Sean’s weird rant on love was “hot.” Then she remembers that there’s a lot she doesn’t know about him. You know, stuff that hadn’t come up over the last three dates—like what his middle name is and whether he’s allergic to peanuts and whether he’s going to take up all the counter space in the bathroom with his hair gel.

Most Normal Date: To get a taste of what their day-to-day life would be like, Emily and Sean go out to dinner in the Tower of London. Totally normal, everyday activity. Emily twirls her hair and calls Sean her “prisoner of love,” and the poor beefeaters try not to barf on their collars.

Choose Your Own Adventure: Emily grills Sean about what he’s hiding. What balls does he have in the air right now? Sean assures her that has no balls to drop. Make your own dirty joke!

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Biggest Warning Sign: Emily reminds Sean that she has a six-year-old, but she wants a lot of kids and she wants them soon. Like yesterday, soon. Then her eyes get Bugs Bunny big and she starts nodding her head wildly like a bobblehead on a stock car. Sean smiles indulgently, ignoring the giant red flashing “Reproduce Now” sign over her head.

Group Date: When the group date card arrives bearing a quote about a rose smelling as sweet, one of the high-quality contestants on this show shouts from the back, “Guys, I think that was Shakespeare!” Chris, Arie, Ryan, Doug, Alejandro, Travis, John and Kalon are all heading to Stratford-upon-Avon, the birthplace of Shakespeare (shush, conspiracy nerds). Stratford-upon-Avon and its world renowned theater have seen a lot of men in skirts over the years, but they haven’t seen so many men chasing a single skirt as a Bachelorette group date. Yep, in America we like our dates and our soft drinks large.

Most Awkward Cross Dressing: While most of the men are playing various Capulets and Montagues, Arie and Doug are playing nurses. Female nurses, to be specific. This makes them extremely uncomfortable, because despite the amount of hair gel or cologne they use, they are manly men. And despite the fact that Shakespearean plays have been casting men as women for around 400 years, for these two, it’s still awk-ward.

Best Acting: Kalon. Not only does he take his part in the production of Romeo & Juliet very, very seriously (to the extent of shooing Emily away during rehearsals because she is distracting), but he also plays a human being almost convincingly. His ability to alienate Emily and the audience with his injection of unnecessary gravitas into his performance is truly Oscar-worthy. If only they gave Oscars for being dicks. It’s probably a technical award.

Level Up: After he got to first base on-stage, when he got to kiss Emily during the action, Ryan thinks it is time to take things up a notch. He pulls her aside at the bar where they have gathered and presents her with a shiny necklace. Silly girl totally falls for it too. Oh Ryan, having good taste in jewelry doesn’t make up for not having a soul!

Biggest Drama: Lest you think only contestants on The Bachelor are middle-school grade gossips, Kalon’s big mouth sets off an urgent game of telephone among the men. Chris tells Arie who tells Doug who, as the responsible father figure, finds he has no choice but to tell Emily what Kalon said. And what was that? That Ricki was “baggage.” What? On Kalon’s planet that’s a compliment.

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Best Line: “I want to rip his limbs off and beat him with them.” That was from Emily after Chris told her what Kalon called her beloved baby. After his quiet conversation with Emily, Chris brought her out, handed out name cards, fixed the punch, sat everyone down, and started the meeting. Kalon freely admits he called Ricki baggage and Emily immediately starts to sizzle. Kalon tries to cut her off, and Emily cuts him off right back, “I love to hear your talk; but not until I’m done. I got that line from you.” She hollers at him for awhile and the tells him to get the @#$! out.  I love Emily when she’s sassy!

Best Back Pedaling: After taking some alone time to fix her hair and make sure her Botox is still working, Emily comes back inside to talk to the remaining men. She is very disappointed in all of them for failing to adequately defend her and her daughter. They all start trying to justify the fact that they didn’t punch Kalon in the face for voicing his opinion. At the end of the night, Emily remains disappointed in all of them and refuses to hand out the date rose. I’m not sure why she is including Doug in that bunch. After all he dad-handed Kalon pretty quickly. It’s just too bad that Kasey Kahl isn’t on the show this season to guard and protect Emily’s heart. Also to make fun of.

Second One-On-One Date: Emily is still reeling from her shocking dismissal, so she’s a bit rattled when she meets Jef at a quaint little manor for afternoon tea and some unexpectedly tough etiquette lessons. After getting scolded over scones, Jef and Emily engage in the worst behavior of all: They dine and dash in the middle of the tea. The etiquette instructor stiff-upper-lips the rejection, but you can tell she will sob quietly into her handkerchief while staring out a window onto the rainy moor for at least a minute, maybe even two.

Best Training By an Ex-Girlfriend: When Jef and Emily are ensconced in a pub with a pint in hand, they discuss the Kalon situation. Jef dutifully discloses to Emily that he told Kalon off. Emily is touched by his defense of her reproductive choices. Then Jef ices the cake and tells Emily that if Ricki is baggage, “She’s a Chloe handbag that I want to have forever.” Wrap him up, I’ll take him. Although, a well-groomed single man with such exquisitely coiffed hair who can namecheck handbag designers? It’s slightly suspicious. Emily doesn’t notice this potential warning sign and after an intimate dessert in the London Eye, she gives Jef a rose.

Best Out-of-Context Quote: “We are high!” said Emily, looking down on London.

Cocktail Party: Emily makes the rounds of the party, grilling the chuckleheads about whether they have her back or not. Sean scores a 10 by assuring her that he will never lie, Arie miffs the landing, and Ryan (Ryan!) comes out on top by ignoring the controversy and giving Emily a repeat performance of …what’s that guy’s name? Oh right: Shakespeare.

Rose Ceremony: Jef is already safe. Doug is rewarded for his valiant Ricki-defense maneuvers by getting the first rose. He’s followed by Sean, Ryan, Chris, John “Wolf,” and Travis. That means that after a ridiculously unsuccessful tension builder, the final rose goes to Arie. That means Alejandro, the Latino mushroom farmer, is going home.

Advantage: Jef and, …sigh, Ryan.

Next Week: The streets of Croatia get 100% more Axe and all the men rush to Emily’s defense all the time no matter what.

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