We’re back in Warsaw, Indiana, for what somehow feels like the millionth time this season. Delicate Ben drives around the “Orthopedic Capital of the World” in a red pickup truck, giving thumbs up to all the folks he knows in town.
Ben meets up with his parents at a diner filled with meth heads. His Dad is still hot as fuck.
The women wander through town as Delicate Ben describes how different his six options are to his parents. “Jojo is unbelievably beautiful… Caila is beautiful… Amanda is shockingly beautiful.” Meanwhile, the women are forced to throw leaves on each other to show how down home they are.
Ben guides the women across a lake to a house right by his parents’ house. Ben tells them not to look in his parents’ windows because they might be banging.
Lauren B.land’s One-on-One Date
Ben tells Lauren B.land she has 30 minutes to get ready and a fully made-up Lauren B.land says, “30 minutes? I might need help!” Girl needs time to give her fake eyelashes their own fake eyelashes. The other women are not emotionally prepared for the paradigm shift of Ben not asking for the date via notecard. Jojo: “This is the first time we’ve seen him ask somebody on a date. Normally it’s on a card. So to see him personally ask somebody seems like it’s more–” Becca fills in: “Intimate.” Becca’s idea of intimacy would be talking in person.
Ben picks Lauren B.land up who has somehow gotten ready in time. Ben: “This is a date that I would do anytime I came home. I drive around the city to see what’s going on.” What? That can’t be a real thing. Lauren B.land is very impressed Ben was the quarterback of his high school football team.
Ben shows her his church and the hotel that used to be the shitty movie theater where he had his first kiss. He goes into this long-winded story of how he wanted to kiss his middle school girlfriend but he couldn’t work out the right angle to do it and she laughed at him. Ben then uses his same middle school line to manipulate Lauren B. to kiss him.
They finally arrive at Ben’s favorite youth club. Weird Coach Tracy calls Ben “Big Ben” so maybe there were some chubster years after all. Coach Tracy asks the kids how many remember Ben from years ago. Some small children who are clearly liars raise their hands.
Ben really “wants Lauren to understand this place.” Lauren is shocked by hands grabbing her and she goes into a dissociative state: “I feel like a giant kid. Like, I didn’t feel like I was Lauren. I felt like I was like, one of the crowd.”
Lauren B.land jump-ropes with the children and has trouble holding her pants up.
Coach Tracy introduces one child, Ronnie Shoemaker, the “Half-Court King”. Coach Tracy challenges the kid to a half court shot and if Ronnie makes it, Ben has to give Lauren a kiss.
Ronnie Shoemaker makes the shot and Coach Tracy over-celebrates Ronnie’s victorious moment.
Ben and Lauren B.land comply with the bet’s demands and kiss, the second kiss Lauren B.land has been manipulated into on this date.
Ben brings in a couple members from the Indiana Pacers to hang with the kids and provide a beautiful dichotomy to Delicate Ben.
For the fourth episode in a row, Lauren B.land says her cheeks hurt from smiling. I’m thinking fillers gone awry. They go to Ben’s favorite Warsaw dive bar and drink with
his friends several extras. Ben wants “to wrap Lauren B.land up”. Lauren says she’s “in love with Ben from Warsaw, Indiana, not Ben the Bachelor.” Did she meet someone else named Ben at the dive bar? Is she still Lauren B. or is she The Crowd?
Jojo’s One-on-One Date
The women are nervous for the arrival of the next date card. Caila is about to read it and Jojo mutters, “God bless me” and God DOES. She’s on the One-on-One.
Ben meets Jojo in Chicago and they have their date on Wrigley Field. Ben makes Jojo put a baseball jersey on that says Mrs. Higgins.
Jojo tests Ben’s bicep strength by jumping into his arms for the third time on their date.
Ben asks her why she’s so scared and she says it’s because she’s always been the person more into her relationships than the other person. She tells him she’s Team Ben so they make out.
Ben: “Jojo has loved the qualities of me that are more me than anything else.” Jojo loves Ben’s Benniest qualities. What are Ben’s Benniest qualities? Delicate? Seth-Cohen-voice? Flushed neck?
Ben meets Virgin Becca, Caila, and Sexy-baby-voiced Amanda on a farm for the group date. Becca and Sexy-baby-voiced Amanda can’t figure out how to row a boat which is hilarious. They then partake in another great American pastoral pastime, flying kites.
Sexy-baby-voiced Amanda tells Ben she called her kids and told them she was going to squeeze them so hard when she sees them. Ben: “Are they ready to be squeezed?"BEN. It would be amazing if Amanda suddenly talks like a normal person when she’s around her kids.
Virgin Becca grills Ben about how she’s not getting special attention from him versus the other girls.
She looks like the long lost stoner sister of Britney Spears. She asks Ben not to blindside her.
Caila tells Ben that she’s anxious because she doesn’t have “super deep roots in an area” while “there’s a big story to tell in his hometown.” Is there? The shitty movie theater kiss? The orthopedic tales? She then tells him she moved “about 17 times before college”. What? How? Feel like there’s definitely more of a story there. Caila’s “pictured herself as moss trying to find the perfect tree to grow with.”
Ben gives Sexy-baby-voiced Amanda the rose to save her the stress of worrying about Ben meeting her children. I LOVE how this show treats single parents like it is a type of handicap.
Sexy-baby-voiced Amanda’s One-on-One Date
Ben: “So I thought the whole purpose of coming to my hometown is doing the things that are normal to me. So I’m going to take you to McDonald’s."You’re a put-upon single Mom. You must take your kids to McDonald’s. Ben and Sexy-baby-voiced Amanda introduce themselves to the McDonald’s worker, Patricia, who tells them they "make a great couple.” I trust Patricia less than the completely un-discerning children who loved Lauren B.land earlier this week.
Delicate Ben then tells Patricia that he’s “always kinda wanted to go back behind the counter. Is there any way that my date and I can get back there?” I know that he has to but I still think less of Ben for going along with this promotion.
Sexy-baby-voiced Amanda’s hair extensions constitute 1000 health code violations. She looks like a Bratz doll.
Then they talk about Ben meeting Amanda’s kids for an ungodly amount of time. Ben says he has a “really great surprise” for her, which in comparison to their current date could be literally anything else that exists in the universe. He takes her to a carnival that the whole town has come out for, including the mayor. After Ben kisses Amanda on the Merry-Go-Round, he says, “Mwah!” and giggles. Ben’s True Delicate Form comes out when he screams like a baby on every single ride.
Amanda is obsessed with all the children at the carnival and why are they not her children and I’m so bored. I fucking miss Olivia.
Twin Emily’s One-on-One Date
Before the date and despite the fact that Ben lives in Denver, Colorado, Twin Emily says, “If Ben were to pick me, I’d come to Indiana and just make babies and start a family right away. This place is too cute.”
Twin Emily leaves for her one-on-one and Lauren B.land astutely says, “I think it could go one of two ways."REALLY LAUREN B.LAND?! IT’S NOT GOING TO GO THAT CLASSIC THIRD WAY THAT BACHELOR DATES GO???? Caila (24), calls Twin Emily (23) "a bright-eyed puppy. Everything is new and exciting.”
Meanwhile, Twin Emily has apparently done a boatload of cocaine before her boat-ride with Ben to his rents’ house. Emily to Ben: “Don’t laugh, are those swans?” HOW DID BEN NOT LAUGH? I think he could have convinced her they were any other animal and possibly aliens.
Ben talks about how Twin Emily only recently became “her individual self”. She has been getting WAY too much credit for literally just being a separate person from her sister. It’s not like they used to be conjoined and in that case would now be ideal marriage material. They arrive at Ben’s childhood home, where he’s got some bizarre modeling photos on the wall. OOOH HE’S AN ONLY CHILD.
Ben calls his parents down from where they were
hiding banging upstairs. Emily is nervous: “Talking to people can kind of be a hard thing for me. I get really like, anxious. I want to make sure that, like, I don’t make an idiot of myself."Spoiler alert, she doesn’t not make an idiot of herself.
Ben’s Mom pulls Emily aside for a one-on-one. Emily admits she’s young and she “overthinks everything."She describes how this process has revealed "things she didn’t even know she needed growing on.” “I’ve dreamed of being an NFL cheerleader for as long as I can remember. So, um, the Denver Broncos, would be very– a great team to cheer for."Well, at least she has figured out that Ben lives in Colorado and not Indiana.
Emily: “I feel like I’m so average at everything in life but I’ve always known deep down in my heart that I will be an above-average Mom and an above-average wife.”
Next is Ben’s Dad’s turn for a one-on-one with Emily. Thankfully, she’s saved some gold for him: “I love watching movies. So if I could sit around and watch movies all day long, that would be my favorite thing in the world… What I don’t like? I mean, I don’t like vegetables.” Has she ever interviewed for anything before? Or answered a question about herself out loud?
Ben then sits down with his Mom who asks, “Do you think Emily has matoored enough to be in a possible engagement?” “Life is going to get serious sometimes. How are you, how is she going to respond to that?” Well, we’ll start by improving her response to vegetables and work our way up from there.
Ben brings Twin Emily back to the dock outside the women’s house. The girls spy and speculate on how the date went. Jojo reads the body language: “They had a fine date. She’s happy.”
Ben tells her to not stop being incredible and boats away into the sunset.
Leaves are blowing. A clock is tolling. The girls look freezing. Delicate Ben calls Lord Harrison over. Ben can’t decide. Chris Harrison: “Could you actually see all five of them as your wife?” Ben: “Ohhhh, nah brah.”
Ben is about to cry during his opening monologue. He can’t handle the emotional toll of this show. He sends Virgin Becca packing even though she asked him to not blindside her. Becca: “Why?!” Delicate Ben stumbles, “Even a second ago I wasn’t certain about this.” Comforting!
Scenes from next week: Amanda’s kid crying… Caila’s Dad looks creepy as fuck and I now get why she’s so nervous about hometowns… Jojo’s brother is threatening Ben like Desiree’s brother!!!