What a fantastic season. I look back at how I thought Emily might be dull or fake and I’m so happy I was wrong. In one of my first blogs regarding Emily’s season I said that I thought she had the potential to be the best Bachelorette ever. I’m not willing to put her above Trista Sutter at this point but I think she’s on equal ground. I think this may be the first season since Trista and Ryan where I one hundred percent like both parts of the couple. Oh, I’m sorry – in case you didn’t watch – Emily picked Jef!
The fact that I could just have easily put Arie’s name in that last sentence and felt the same way just goes to show that, finally, creator Mike Fleiss and his crew got it exactly right. My only fear is that they will take the wrong lessons from their success. Emily didn’t succeed because she was a beloved past contestant. I hope they learned from Ben F. that you CANNOT rely on America’s love of the 2nd or 3rd place contestant to have a successful season. Instead, you must focus on whether that person has real presence on camera and truly is looking for marriage and true love.
The night started with the family visits which were almost exactly the same for both men, with Emily’s family unable or unwilling to help her choose. Jef was smooth and genuine and Arie babbled like a baby (adorable if not suave). Emily’s family is strange. Her mom reminded me of Arie’s mom, her dad was sweet but quiet. Her brother came off a little scary psycho but chilled out a little the more he spoke with the guys. Both guys asked for the blessing to propose and got it!
Emily didn’t think she was going to introduce anyone to Ricki but after talking with Jef on date day she decides she’ll take him. The best part of watching this decision-making process was the discussion beforehand. It seemed like she was really going to tell him he couldn’t come, but then we saw something rare that confirmed for me the coming success for Jef. They had an actual conversation. A real, back and forth, thoughtful conversation where they decided TOGETHER. It was exactly the thing a real couple would do and the consideration they gave to each other and the points each was making told me that Arie was toast.
When Jef met Ricki, it was obvious they were going to be a family. They all fit together so well. I started to feel a little sorry for Emily that she had to spend the day with Arie, but in a Bachelorette first, she didn’t.
Probably the most painful awkward part of the evening came when Emily told Arie (after a deep discussion with Chris Harrison to figure out what to do – right!) that she wouldn’t be able to go on their date because she picked Jef. However, she was woefully bad at explaining this and Arie just had to infer from her behavior, tears, and small comments that she had more confidence in Jef that he wasn’t the one. I felt really bad for them both.
Fast forward to the proposal. Can Jef speak or what? That boy has a golden tongue and his words were romantic and confident. He swayed Emily to say yes even after she was unsure she would actually get engaged again. If we are to believe them both (and I only halfway do), she didn’t expect the proposal because they hadn’t talked about whether he would do it. Uhuh, right. But I have to say it brought tears to my eyes and I felt like I was watching something real. When they brought Ricki out after it was obvious that this was a family.
As far as the live show with Chris Harrison? I think it was a bust. I didn’t care for watching the show with the audience and his questions were dull. Then we had to sit through a half hour with Arie, who we discovered flew to Charlotte unbeknownst to producers and left his journal from the experience for em to read. He didn’t go see her out of respect for Jef and she didn’t read it out of respect for Jef. I think everyone, including Arie realized after watching the show that Emily made the best choice for herself.
There was so little time to hear Emily and Jef. We had to sit through them watching their own proposal scene again and Chris asking stupid questions like tell us how you feel about Emily. Chris! I just sat through a whole season about how he felt about Emily! Tell us about wedding and baby plans. Apparently Jef is moving to Charlotte (Did anyone doubt Emily would come out victorious on that point?) and will have his own place until they get married. Of course a couple who didn’t use the fantasy suite wouldn’t live together before marriage. Emily says she’d like a spring wedding.
Another thing that disappointed from the live show was the lack of time with Ashley and JP. They didn’t even get to come to the stage! Here you have a couple that is actually happy, living together and planning their wedding and you don’t give us an update? Arrrghh…at least we did get to see them and their spark is still there and real!
For those people looking to know who the next Bachelor is…rumors still say Roberto. I’m OK with him but I’d rather have Arie. I think Sean would end up being another Ben (not in the geeky way b/c Sean is awesome) because of his lack of conversational skills. The lead in this series has to talk! If you go back and watch any of Sean’s dates he never brought up anything besides he’d be a good husband or dad, his faith, or his family. Good man but despite how much America loves him now, the wrong choice for Bachelor. Arie on the other hand? Brilliant choice – better than Roberto – but doubt they can pull it off this fast after the word is out that they already signed Roberto.
What a great season! Looking forward to Bachelor Pad, Ed and Reid, and watching Chris B rebound with three different chics! Debauchery!