One episode to go, Bachelor fans, and at the rate women have been prematurely dropping off the show, this season finale can't come soon enough. If Nikki or Clare weren't both sure "yeses" to whatever kind of proposal Juan Pablo cooks up in two weeks, I'd say they should try and bang the finale out in ten minutes. Things are that dire.
Well, not dire. Underneath the deep "romance" everyone is desperate to feel and express at every turn, The Bachelor is still a game show in which there's a definite winner and 24-26 losers. So let's not forget what it is we're watching here! But at the same time... some of the things that Andi said about Juan Pablo can't be ignored. Most of the things Andi said can't be ignored. To wit:
- Juan Pablo seems less interested in learning about the people he's with than rattling off his own stories and accomplishments, never really engaging because it's all about him, him, him.
- The sheer volume of "it's okay"s out of his mouth, a go-to expression that neutralizes conversation by reducing real feelings to verbal missteps that should be swept away quickly.
- Not paying attention. "What religion am I?" asked Andi.
- Not caring.
Now, 1) this is a game show, and 2) we've seen Juan Pablo cry sending home women even 3-4 weeks ago, when the stakes were not nearly so high as they were tonight. The guy's not a monster. (We say before the "Women Tell All" special next week.) But it is kind of upsetting to hear Andi's interpretation of their Fantasy Suite night (which I'm assuming is the correct one) and then to watch JP essentially dismiss every one of her concerns. No, it's not incumbent on him to change or really take to heart what these women are telling him. That's not a part of his show mission, let alone contract.
But this IS a show about love, and connection, and to watch the star of a show about love fail to acknowledge one of its most important components — open communication, and a willingness to hear your partner — is at least a little upsetting. What the hell are we even doing here if you can't f***ing listen?
Nikki, Clare — one of them will be the winner of this Bachelor season (I suspect neither will be a fiancée, at least not immediately), and the other will be crestfallen. But it's Andi who emerges from the JP Carnival of "Okay"s having actually tried to address some of the relationship issues on display, issues that need serious addressing before anything resembling "marriage" can be bandied about. In all likelihood, Andi will be the next Bachelorette . And good for her if it happens, because having been through this experience herself she'll be able to discriminate amongst d-bags more readily and create an atmosphere that reinforces the positive aspects of love.
JP, from the beginning, has harped on Cameela Cameela Cameela — and rightfully so, to an extent, since you've got to consider yourself a father first and foremost. But in trying to tick off that box (among others) so forcefully, JP has failed to understand that most important here is finding a relationship. A partner. I'm disappointed — as I'm sure many of you are, too — that Andi left, but she finds herself in a far better environment (i.e. not vying for Roses on St. Lucia) than she was before.