Week 8: A Tale of Four Cities

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Recapped by Keegan L.

So here we are, down to the final four. Making allusions to Game of Thrones and football has been a tried and true coping mechanism for me as I have suffered through this season of The Bachelor, so let’s not stop now! Ladies and gentlemen, I give you The Bachelor Playoffs!

Let’s go ahead and map the final four contestants to the last four teams who stood in the NFL before this year’s Super Bowl: The Pittsburg Steelers, The New England Patriots, The Lords of the North (long may they reign) Green Bay Packers, and finally—The Atlanta Falcons.

First up, let’s go ahead and let Rachel represent the Green Bay Packers. Clearly the best contestant, destined to not “win” the season, but gearing up for a big win next season. Rachel has been the saving grace of the season and knowing that she will inevitably be sent home has made this season all the more torturous to watch. She is the epitome of class and none of the other contestants come close to her level of swag so I can’t think of anyone more deserving to represent the best team in the NFL.

Next up, Corinne has got to be the Patriots. Vapid, braggadocios, and seen by everyone else in a “please God, anyone but her” light by the vast majority of the viewing public, Corinne is on track to derail any hope for humanity that exists in the world of The Bachelor. Let’s just hope that this season turns out better than the Super Bowl did.

Then we have Raven who has to be the equivalent of the Atlanta Falcons. Originally an underdog and unlikely contender, Raven “flew under the radar” for the first few episodes before claiming a spot in the final four. She also has the southern charm flare that is hopefully enough to undercut the mad sex offensive powerhouse that is the New England Corinne.

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And finally, the Pittsburg Steelers may as well represent Vanessa. This one is more of a personal equivalence. People had really high hopes for the Steelers back in the playoffs, but I wasn’t really surprised when they fell to the Patriots. In the same way, I don’t think Vanessa has much of a shot going up against Corinne, but I’ll keep my fingers crossed all the same.

So there we have it! Our bracket for the final four. Let’s fill the stadiums, buy a few cups of overpriced beer and let the games begin!

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Game one kicked off in Arkansas as Nick joined Raven for some four-wheeling fun. I was cringing uncontrollably when the cop pulled up for an awkward exchange. When the cop first pulled up, I was thinking how hokey it was and furiously scribbling notes about the forced drama that this show insists on putting together. Thankfully, it was Raven’s brother which fit in better with the show but it was still awkward as all hell to watch Nick pretend he didn’t know who it was at first. Honestly, Raven’s brother had a more confident camera presence than Nick has had all season. Let’s let that guy be the Bachelor.

Then we got to meet Raven’s parents and that was all fine and well. It was fantastic news to find out that Raven’s father was in remission after battling lung cancer and as sleazy as the producers are, it was good that they didn’t play up that angle. I honestly could have seen a cliffhanger before commercial break playing out like, “Raven there’s something we have to tell you about your father.” Then the music ramps up the drama and the commercials roll. Luckily, that didn’t happen and the producers get humanity points for not trying to cash in on cancer.

Of course the big drama of this part was Raven not being able to say “I love you” to Nick. And to be honest, I’m happy she didn’t. All season long, the Atlanta Falcons boasted a strong defense and Raven followed suit in her bracket by playing a solid emotional defense. But will it be strong enough to counter the powerhouse mad sex offense boasted by the New England Corinne?

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All of Rachel’s segments are totally undercut by the knowledge that she will eventually be going home. I can’t be the only one thinking this, right? After this writing gig is done, I have no plans to watch any future seasons of The Bachelor or The Bachelorette so knowing that Rachel is out of the running and is going to be the next Bachelorette, really makes these segments drag on for me.

I’m honestly kind of disappointed by that. Rooting for Rachel is almost as much fun as rooting against Corinne and knowing that Rachel is headed for the door either this week or next is almost as bad as seeing leaked internet pictures of Nick and Corinne’s engagement photo shoot. I should probably clarify that those pictures don’t exist, but can you imagine if they did? Fans of the show would have a field day with that.

Anyway, Nick and Rachel go to church before meeting Rachel’s family. I don’t know if there is any sharper contrast between two contestants with Rachel taking Nick to church and Corinne taking Nick shopping for a $1,000 thermal shirt. I’m not going to spend time talking about the specifics of Nick’s visit with Rachel’s family. Fans of the show will get their fill of that when Rachel’s season airs.

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All I can say is that watching Rachel’s segments evokes a pale shadow of the same despair that I felt watching the first quarter of the Atlanta vs. Green Bay playoff game. You know that the end is coming but you’re glad that it’s been a good season. And for both Rachel and the Green Bay packers, next year is sure to be a great one.

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In case you’re not a fan of football, it’s worth noting that the New England Patriots are pretty much disliked by everyone except their fans. Don’t get me wrong, they’re a great team but they play dirty, win in spite of most of the country cheering for them to lose, and they generate a ton of money. They are basically Corinne in NFL form.

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So for his third hometown date, Nick flew down to Miami to join the New England Corinne for a full day of shopping, kissing, and awkward interactions with Mr. Olympios. Really, the strangest takeaway from the episode seemed to be that people were more concerned with Nick being able to provide the sort of lifestyle that Corinne is accustomed to while Raven and Rachel’s families seemed more concerned with their daughters’ compatibility with Lil St. Nick. They also made a really big deal about how much the clothes Nick bought while out with Corinne cost, but honestly they didn’t look any different than the outfits he’s been wearing all season.

Either he, or more likely the show, has been footing the bill for some expensive clothes all season or the outfit Nick bought was somehow better just because it had a higher price tag. Now I’m starting to wonder if that’s how Corinne assigns value to things. Does she think that something is better just because it costs more? Is that how she’s trying to present herself to Nick? “Oh Nick I’m clearly the best! Look how expensive I am!”

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Like the New England Patriots, me and most people who have been following the show have been eagerly awaiting the fall of Corinne all season. I don’t think she’s going to be eliminated tonight though. They played up the whole “Nick and Corinne are taking it slow” (sexually speaking) for her not to get a fantasy island night.

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And last but not least we have Vanessa. I’ll be honest with you guys, my interest was seriously fading by the time Vanessa’s segment rolled around. I have to give her dad some serious props since he seemed to be the one who was most concerned with the entire scenario of the show and Nick’s four other potential true loves.

I’m way jealous of Vanessa for being a Canadian citizen though and the ability to marry for dual citizenship has got to be a definite plus during this political climate. Honestly, this show has started to look more and more like a metaphor for all of America to me.

Will Nick run away with Vanessa to the welcoming country of Canada? Will he embrace the giggling whipped cream-covered embodiment of American Consumerism and “Make America Corinne again”? Or will he choose something real and meaningful in order to build a better future?

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Huh, with that analogy it’s looking better and better for Corinne every minute.

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