I want a love that can light the darkness: a post brought to you by The Bachelorette

This week kicks off the travelling! The first stop: Atlantic City. Ben Flajnik took his dates to Switzerland – I feel disappointed.

First date: one-on-one with Brad

Brad and Des head down to the boardwalk and go on a bunch of carnival rides. As Mikey T said, “he’s a good enough kid, but I don’t think he’s the one for Des”. You know what Mikey T, you might be right. I never thought I’d say that. The date goes well enough, they feed each other chocolate and hop on a merry-g0-round.

Later that night they go and sit in a giant sand castle, and talk about what sort of girl Brad would like to date. He’s being vague and says: “someone who’s a good mom.” Well. You might need to be more specific here. They head to dinner and we actually see Brad and Des eat, and while that’s great, it means that they had nothing to talk about and the film crew had to resort to filming them eating. Unheard of! The entire dinner is full of yawning pauses, so they climb to the very top of a light house where Des dumps him. I can’t help but feel like climbing three stories to do this was a bad plan. Are they going to walk down separately?

Unfortunately, Brad’s love couldn’t “light the darkness” for Des. Unlike the lighthouse they were standing in. Oh the metaphors.

Second date: group date

It’s Mister America! The 11 guys compete in a pageant. All our dreams are coming true! I can’t help but feel like the whole reason this is happening is because Chris Harrison wanted to play host again. Judged by Miss America 2013, the Mayor of Jersey and Des, the competition begins. We see the worst tap routine in the world, a terrible strip tease by Mikey T, Brooks smashes a ukulele, there’s a bad Shakespeare reading, and Chris simply walks around heels. Zach W sings a song he wrote and then they all strut around in swimsuits hamming it up for the crowd. Most likely the best segment of any Bachelorette show ever. In the end, the first ever Bachelorette’s Mister America is: KASEY! He did a terrible tap routine and it sealed the deal. He looks like Zac Efron’s older (less attractive) brother.

After the pageant they head to a pool for some drinks and drama. But first, Chris reads Des a poem that he wrote. He is a serious front-runner for us here at Sarcasm Soapbox. Perhaps our new fave? And then we’re back to the Ben bashing. To be perfectly honest, we’re not really sure why they all hate him so much (there must be something we’re not seeing). It’s not like Tierra who was absolutely the epitome of evil. But he clearly rubs everybody the wrong way, even Monk Hair (aka Bryden) who seems very reasonable. Or, maybe it’s a case of too much testosterone locked up in one house competing for a girl with slightly limp hair. In the end Zach W gets the rose for singing Des a song and making her feel special.

Back at the ranch, James sits in a bubble batch eating chocolate covered strawberries. OH MY YUM.

Third date: one-on-one with James

In a completely surprising and perhaps unromantic turn of events, they get in the helicopter not to cruise over the Swiss Alps, but to fly over the Jersey Shore that was devastated by Hurricane Sandy. It’s so, so sad, and it sort of seems like the show is using it’s unlimited funds to spread a message to it’s massive readership, rather than just make them jealous of the sweet vacation packages the contestants participate in. They meet up with Manny and Jan, two residents who had their house destroyed, and Des and James give up their romantic dinner in Atlantic City to the couple so they can enjoy a night out. It’s not going to rebuild their destroyed house, but it’s a nice gesture.

Interestingly, the camera then follows Manny and Jan – who actually eat their dinner – and listen in on their conversation, and show their private confessionals. After dinner, they’re given a letter from the Red Cross and their wedding album, that had been water-damaged, expertly restored. Bless.

We then see James and Des at a little diner, having a delightful conversation, and James has cried twice now. And so, since they obviously have such an emotional connection, James decides it’s time to open up: when he was a first year in college he cheated on his girlfriend. I think that that’s terrible. But I also think that he was 18, ten years later, he’s likely a very different person. Des says that “the temptation might still be there” but I really think that they both need to forgive him and move on.

Eventually the two pairs meet up and dance to a private concert. This date has LITERALLY lasted forever. FOREVER. I get it, you want to shine a spotlight on the devastation of Sandy, but all this time we could have been watching more pageant footage. I just can’t help but feel like this episode might have been poorly edited.

The cocktail party:

First up, Mike G gets to chat with Des, who wrote her an acrostic poem and then made out with her. Then Des and Chris chat, and Chris asks her questions and draws out info from her; a change for this show. And then, dun dun dun, Bryden, calls Des aside, and lets her know that he feels that the connection is falling behind. In a shocking twist, Bryden lets the viewers at home know that his feelings are waning and if Des gave him a rose, he’s not sure he would even accept it. Is it just me or did this completely come out of left field?

The Rose Ceremony:

Tonight, Des sends home Zach, the book publisher who wore the bow tie. It’s a little sad, he seemed so cute. I just hope, that Bryden doesn’t decide to take his monk-hair and leave next week, or I will really feel bad for Zach.

Next week, they head to Munich!

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