Welcome back, rose lovers, and as always, thank you for joining me on this “journey” to find temporary relief from the ennui of daily life by watching the humiliation of others. (Speaking of which, did I mention I joined Twitter?)
But before we begin, Chris Harrison would like to take a moment to honor Eric Hill, the contestant who died last month in a non-Bachelorette-related paragliding accident. “In the coming weeks you’ll see that Eric was a vibrant man,” Harrison tells us, as photos of a chiseled young man with sky-blue eyes and perfect teeth flash on the screen. There he is in front of the Eiffel Tower; posing next to an Egyptian pyramid; surrounded by little kids in Africa. “He will be greatly missed, and we dedicate this season to him.” I mean, of course they do. But, my God: 31 years old. His poor mother. Everyone go hug your loved ones. I’ll wait.
Okay, rose lovers, shake off that sobering reminder of your own mortality – it’s time to find Andi a man! Even though she “worked really hard” to establish herself in a competitive field, a single girl’s gotta do what a single girl’s gotta do – and according to Andi, that means “leaving behind a good profession and leaving my family.” (That’s too bad, because as we learned on Juan Pablo’s hometown date with Andi, her dad Hy is a big, awesome teddy bear with a fierce growl.) After a brief shopping montage (no to the rose t-shirt, ixnay on the irt-dress-shay, and hell no to those orange pants), and a klassy photo shoot in front of a wall of fake law books, it’s off to the Casa Bachelorette guest house, where Andi’s sister is waiting to tell her which cocktail party dress makes her look a little bit hippy. (Hint: It’s definitely that gold lamé number, which is why Andi changes into the spangled, flesh-colored sausage casing before the Big Night begins.)
The men, meanwhile, have been waxed, oiled, and herded into the limos for the ride to the meet market. It’s go time!
Marcus, 25: “I have a lot to give and offer,” says the admittedly nervous Sports Medicine Manager. (Is that, like, a steroid salesman?) “God willing, forever.” Ruling: Too much, too soon. Limo exit grade: B-
Chris, 32: This farmer from Iowa is far more relaxed. “I’m excited to get to know you and have fun,” he says. Ruling: His hugs seem a little too forceful, but whatever. Grade: B+
JJ, 30: A handsome, dweeby dude in a bow-tie who claims his occupation is “Pantsapreneur.” Ruling: Calling Andi’s “journey” a “noble quest” is, somehow, endearing. Grade: B
Marquel, 26: Brave enough to wear pink. Tells Andi she looks pretty. Ruling: If that’s his “A-Game,” he might not get drafted. Grade: B
Tasos, 30: At last, someone with a gimmick! This “Wedding Event Coordinator” says he loves to travel, and asks Andi if she’d mind replicating Paris’ “lovers bridge” with him by placing a lock on Casa Bachelor’s iron trellis. (He’s clearly into women, amirite?) Ruling: Oh, he was so close to sticking the landing! But I’m gonna have to deduct some points for the tacky gold piece of man-bling on his right earlobe. Grade: A-
NEXT: “Anal, but with an m”