ABC knows by now we Bachelor fans just can’t get enough of the mayhem that goes on during the filming of this show. Therefore, some time ago they began airing a wrap-up episode called After The Final Rose. Tonight is Chris Harrison’s time to shine because in the role of moderator, he can finally stretch his acting abilities pretending to care what happens to those involved in the process. In addition, he’s not restricted to such phrases as, “who will go home brokenhearted,” or “ladies, this is the final rose.” He must wait all year for this, his Shining Moment in the Sun.
One of my favorite aspects to ATFR, is knowing that some of the ladies, in hoping to leave us with one final memorable impression, typically wear as little as possible to show off the ‘goods,’ and why shouldn’t they? They’ve probably paid thousands of dollars for them.
Chris opens the show excitedly touting the success stories of The Bachelor: 1) Charlie O’Connell and Sarah B. are still living together in Los Angeles, 2) Byron and Mary, who own a lakeside resort in Texas, are planning a Fall wedding, and 3) Six-months pregnant Trista and Ryan, have been married almost four years. I may be cynical, but I can also admit when I’m wrong, and I’ve got to say I hadn’t realized three couples were still together, and the news is nothing short of…well…amazing (drink!).
We Want Details Of Your Pain
ABC clearly has massive amounts of fake tanner backstage, because as Danielle, Amber and Stephanie, South Carolina, take center stage, all three of them have exactly the same bake-until-golden-brown coloring. Amber and Stephanie are wearing extremely short skirts, and I always wonder how women can cross and uncross their legs without displaying their nether regions when they’re up on a stage like that. Am I the only one who marvels at this? If so, perhaps it’s because when I was young I made it to a county-wide spelling bee, and as I was sitting on stage in the front row staring out at my parents, I can still recall my mother frantically throwing hand gestures my way. Nowadays someone might misinterpret such signals as some kind of gang signs and take the person down, but thankfully this was a more innocent time. Being a naïve kid, though, I thought she was offering me wild encouragement - until later that is, when I learned I had been flashing the audience the entire time. So please, as you continue in life, remember my misfortune and keep your legs together, ladies. Besides it’s a terrific two-fer because it’s also an excellent form of birth control.
A series of clips show the three ladies as they begin their journey (drink!) with Dandy, and as the clips progress, each of them becomes more and more mesmerized by Dandy’s mojo, until he eventually cuts them loose. We witness once again, Amber’s limo meltdown because of her perceived betrayal, and Danielle’s gracious, refined resignation as she realized Dandy wasn’t ‘keeping’ her. Stephanie’s attitude after being cut, can only be described as sadness and disappointment.
Chris asks Amber how she felt when she didn’t get a rose, and she thinks she was mislead by Dandy. She says the only night she felt sure she would be staying on, was the night she got cut, so she was shocked. However, since Dandy said he let her go because of her age, she has taken that as a compliment - if that’s the only thing ‘wrong’ with her, she must be doing something right.
Chris turns to Stephanie and asks what happened between Dandy and her because they seemed to share such a strong connection (drink!) in the beginning. She says after watching the show, she was able to see how tight his relationship was with some of the others, and that during the taping, she had no idea. Now she wonders if perhaps the connection (drink!) she had with him, wasn’t as strong as she initially thought. Chris goes for the jugular and wants to know, in her eyes, if there was any particular time when she went from “hero to zero.” She feels when Dandy asked her about the other girls in Tahoe, her responses of how the women were frustrated with him, might have come across harsher than she intended, and she regrets having that conversation with him.
It’s Danielle’s turn to help us understand what happened between Dandy and her, and she thinks her Hawaiian rendezvous with Dandy just wasn’t as meaningful to him as it was with Tessa and Bevin. Her future plans are to move forward with her career, to move out of her parent’s house, and to hopefully find the right man for her. I’m surprised number one on her list isn’t to find a new psychic.
Break A Leg, Bevin
The ladies join the audience, and Bevin gets the stage all to herself. She is also wearing a mini dress, but her most visible fashion accessory is definitely the stylish hot pink cast (edged in silver sequins) she’s wearing on her left leg. She says she indeed broke her leg on the episode with Sarge, and damn, I offer my sincere apologies for not believing her injury was very serious. I still have no idea how she was able to run around in high heels with a broken leg, but apparently she did. I’d also like to point out she looks stunning tonight, so the weeks after filming have been good to her - not to mention she’s been well coated in fake tanner, too. Clips are shown of her journey (drink!) with Dandy, including her frustration with having to share him. Naturally her clip ends with Dandy telling her he has stronger feelings for Tessa, and she admits it still hurts to look back on it but says Dandy’s a smart guy who picked Tessa because he felt she was the love of his life. Chris points out it’s obvious she still has feelings for him, and adds they had “crazy chemistry” between them - more powerful than what he shared with any of the other women. Did you hear that? I think Tessa just screamed backstage, heh. Bevin thought she would be his final choice up until she was in the limo driving to the Final Rose Ceremony, when suddenly due to some kind of woman’s intuition, she knew she would be going home.
The Golden Boy Returneth
Chris and Bevin remain on stage and Dandy comes out to join them. He gives Bevin quite the bear hug, and is definitely feeling uncomfortable as he faces the ladies. Chris says Dandy is looking pretty emotional, and gives Dandy the opportunity to ‘make nice’ to Bevin. After some stammering, he asks how her ankle is and she responds, “do you want to give me a checkup?” which elicits raucous laughter from the audience. He compliments her cast choice, and is oddly proud that his diagnosis of her fracture was correct (perhaps he doesn’t have such a good track record?). With his typical lack of inflection, he says it’s not every day you find yourself having deep feelings for two women at the same time (although on The Bachelor, it happens. Every. Single. Time.). Continuing, he tells us saying goodbye to Bevin that day was the hardest thing he’s ever had to do, and the reason she made it to F2, is because she’s such a wonderful woman. When she states she doesn’t have any regrets, Dandy gives her a hug, the audience applauds with one woman in particular getting misty-eyed. The times they enjoyed at the waterfall, riding in the helicopter, etc., are moments he’ll never forget, and he promises she’ll always occupy a piece of his heart. I wonder how many people it took to keep Tessa from running onstage to tear that piece of heart out of his chest, heh. Chris wants to know if she has any questions for Dandy, and she says sometimes things are better left unsaid, which prompts Dandy to place his hand on her knee. I imagine three more men are now anchoring down Tessa backstage. A gracious Bevin adds that she respects his decision, and goes so far as to thank Dandy for now allowing her to seek the man who’s right for her. Chris insists she ask Dandy why she didn’t get the Final Rose, but she refuses to play his game. In a quirky moment, Dandy finally poses the question to himself, then answers saying when Tessa eventually opened up to him and told him how much she loved him, that’s when he knew he had stronger feelings for Tessa.
Audience Participation I
Like a sibling insisting on finger-poking a brother or sister, an audience member asks Bevin what words are better left unsaid. Choking back tears, Bevin says she was so deeply in love with Dandy that she doesn’t really want to know why she was rejected. He places his hand on her knee again, and I think I heard another scream from backstage. I must say, Bevin is coming across as a mature, level-headed woman as she further states that Tessa, who was a dear friend of hers in the house, is still in her heart.
The True-Life Shrek And Fiona
Dandy acknowledges that it was difficult facing Bevin tonight, but he looks forward to bringing Tessa out to join him. He says it may be the end of the show, but it’s the beginning of the rest of their lives together (look for this sentiment in a Hallmark store nearest you). Dandy’s “madly in love” with Tessa, and lifts her off the ground as they hug. The cameraman gives us a close-up of the sparkling diamond engagement ring, and she says she’s incredibly happy and relieved not to have to keep their secret anymore. We walk down memory lane as their clips are shown, from their initial meeting when she told the muffin joke to the final proposal. Dandy states there was an element of the chase with Tessa, and says he had to work hard to win her over. Damn, Fleiss is good because even though I can be a hard-nosed cynic, I’m actually buying this love story. Dandy wipes tears from his eyes, and says the collage she made him on their last date, deeply touched him. Chris reminds us that Tessa almost walked away at one point, and she says she’s glad she stayed (obviously). Again, Dandy states he had to work hard for her (single folks, are you taking notes?), and that helped make it so real. He adds that he was smitten during their Japanese restaurant date when she wore the diamonds (I’ve included the link in case you want to try some magic for yourself - disclaimer: diamonds not included), and that she was definitely worth the chase.
Chris congratulates them, and says they look incredibly happy. Tessa says she hoped it would be possible to find love on the show, and Dandy volunteers that when he signed up for the show, he was praying for a gem like her. Chris asks how difficult it was not being able to talk about their engagement until the show aired, and Tessa says it was particularly tough not to tell her sister or roommates. Dandy admits they were able to see each other a few times, and talk on the phone often, but since they couldn’t tell anyone what they were going through, it actually made them closer. Fortunately, when one of them was having a bad day, they were able to comfort each other. Chris jokes that Tuesdays, after the show aired, must have been especially bad days and everyone laughs as Dandy says, “that’s the past, honey!”
Their next step is to return to Pennsylvania to see both families again, then Tessa will spend several days with him in Hawaii. A few months later, she’ll move to Oahu, and Chris asks if she’s ready for the military life. She not familiar with the lifestyle, but respects and honors his commitment so she’ll be keeping an open mind. Chris mentions the ‘M’ word and wants to know if they’ve set a date for marriage to which Dandy replies that Tessa takes baby steps. He says they both know they need to spend time together in the real world before they make a wedding date. Chris teases that he’ll let their parents prod them about having children, and Dandy jokes that she’s already pregnant. The audience roars at that comment and Tessa makes sure everyone knows they’re kidding.
Audience Participation II
A not-so-random question from the audience pertains to the dog tags we saw them wearing on the show. Tessa explains they made them during her hometown visit - hers says, “T-bone, don’t mess with Tess.” Dandy’s reads, “Bach man, sizzling hot.”
The next audience question is whether they plan on running a marathon together. Tessa says she wouldn’t want to beat his time and make him feel bad, hee.
But Wait, There’s More!
Chris makes a pitch for bachelors to sign up for future shows. Some of the more memorable women from previous seasons help to lure potential men to audition by wearing plunging necklines while they cleverly finish the line…the perfect bachelor is a man who…
Knows how to have fun.
Is smoking hot.
Sounds like coins dropping into a piggy bank (tiara-wearing Erica from Prince Larry’s season).
Is a bad boy.
Doesn’t have back hair.
What’s A Party Without A Gift
Chris says Tessa took a chance coming on the show, as her mother took a risk when she fell in love with Tessa’s stepfather on a special trip they took on the Inca Trail. Therefore, ABC is honoring their love and commitment by sending them both on a trip to the Inca Trail. They’re thrilled and beam broadly as Chris thanks them for taking us on their amazing journey (drink! drink!). As the camera pans out, Dandy once again picks Tessa up, kissing her, then twirling her around for all to see his new prize.
I have loved every minute of The Bachelor with you, my wonderful friends, and look forward to getting together with you again in the Fall when we’ve got a new
victimbachelor in the neighborhood. If you’ve volunteered a fiendfriend to be on The Bachelor, let me know in a pm here.