Yeah, Ashley did gravitate immediately to the one forbidden person. That tells me she's not ready to find someone who's ready... she's still in the "I bet I can change you" maturity level... Not ready for marriage!
But I disagree that it was ALL her imagination... Bentley played right into that. All his grabbing and touching and all the meaningless garbage that came out of his mouth, intentionally vague, i.e. "I think you know where I'm at...", "I think we're on the same page...."
For the life of me, why the heck didn't Ashley say, "No, I don't know what page you're on, tell me EXACTLY how you feel about me, and quit talking meaningless sentences!" I was so completely upset at Ashley that she didn't have the guts to pin him down when he started spewing that garbage AGAIN, in Hong Kong. Where is her courage? I can't believe she had the chance to call him out on his garbage on television to teach him a lesson about using LINES like that to trick women... and yet she let him off easy, again.
I hope this will be a huge lesson for the producers to NOT cast feeble people as the lead, since America doesn't enjoy watching that. I don't believe Ashley's apparent feebleness is simply a bad edit. She was played because she's fine with letting herself be played. And, it will happen again in her life, because she STILL hasn't learned how to see through a garbage man. Thus, I don't believe this is a case of TPTB trying to edit strong females as weak and indecisive. Rather, it's a case of editing a weak and indecisive female just as she is.
Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette' episode 7 | PopWatch | EW.com
The hardest thing for me about writing these blogs is deciding where to start. This week I have been debating, do I talk about Emily’s interview first or the episode itself with Ashley? I decided I’d give you a few thoughts about Emily at the end of the blog. Our final big stop on this crazy travel leg of this journey across Asia is Taipei, Taiwan. The week before hometowns is a bit awkward, and always a tough one every season. Most of Ashley’s relationships have moved forward to the point where they are ready to be exclusive, or as exclusive as the show will allow. So the guys are done living together, done seeing each other go on dates with Ashley and done with group dates. With all that said I started off the week by giving the guys a little good news that there would be three one-on-one dates with no roses on the line. This always takes the pressure off those dates so they can just enjoy without worrying if they’ll be sent home at the end of it.
Constantine got the first date and it was a pivotal one. To borrow a phrase from Ashley ,she and Constantine had a breakthrough. He was one of those guys like Ryan that she knew she cared for but wasn’t sure if she had any chemistry with. Constantine really rose to the occasion and they had an amazing date. One not-so-romantic note about their date was the fact that they almost passed out due to smoke inhalation on the train ride. When they went through a tunnel the smoke billowed into the cabin and there was no escape. Ash, Constantine and the entire crew were coughing up a lung and gasping for air when they finally got out of the tunnel.
The next date was with Ben… or was it Constantine again… hmmm… hard to tell them apart! Seriously I know many of you have commented on the fact that they look like they were separated at birth, but if you spend much time with them at all it’s really easy to tell them apart in looks and personality. There really wasn’t a lot to Ben’s date as far as his relationship with Ashley. The two of them are in a great spot and all this date did was move it forward another few positive steps. They have such great chemistry and he knows just what to do and say to put her at ease. There was no question in anybody’s mind that he was getting a rose and a hometown date.
Then came the final dreaded group date of the season. After this week the guys won’t have to endure group dates and they really won’t see each other except at the rose ceremonies. JP was in a foul mood all week and being put on the group date only made it worse. It’s not that he’s necessarily insecure but it’s tough for these guys who care for Ashley at this point to have to watch her date the other guys. JP did deliver the line of the night when he described Ames’ outfit as the “offspring of an ostrich and Elton John”. While JP and Lucas were wallowing in their misery Ames was his usual positive, delightful self. He carried on as if he didn’t have a care in the world and continued to impress Ashley.
Easily the most noteworthy moment of the episode came during Ashley’s one-on-one date with Ryan. He was so excited to finally get his date with her. He was having a blast and really feeling good about everything when Ashley pulled the rug out from under him and sent him home. The usually positive Ryan was crushed and speechless. He didn’t know what hit him and didn’t know what to say or ask Ashley. He never saw that coming from her. Ashley explained herself excellently by letting him know at this point if she doesn’t feel it, why lead him on any further and then drag his family into it? Despite the honest intentions it still hurt her and Ryan. After that date I could tell Ashley was done playing games. She didn’t want any part of a cocktail party. She knew the four men she wanted to go home with and didn’t want to prolong the situation any longer than it needed to be. Although I always play devil’s advocate just to make sure they are positive that’s what they want, I understood and really respected her decision to forego the cocktail party.
Much like her relationship with Ryan, Ashley just wasn’t feeling it with Lucas at this point. Lucas was a little put off in Hong Kong and since then his relationship with Ashley just got a little stagnant, and at this stage in the game you just can’t have that. Ryan and Lucas are both really good guys and I told Ashley she really couldn’t go wrong with any of these guys. I felt any of these four men were going to respect her and treat her right — it’s now just a matter of chemistry between them. Next, Ames, JP, Ben and Constantine will take Ashley back to their hometowns to meet their families. This is always one of my favorite episodes each season and you will see it all play out next Monday.
Before I let you go I obviously want to talk a little bit about my interview with Emily. I honestly don’t have much to add to what she said as I really feel good about the interview. I believe I asked the pertinent questions yet stayed respectful of her and Brad and I feel she answered them fully while doing the same. Emily got out of the car emotional, so I knew it was going to be a tough interview for us both. I care for her and Brad very much, consider them friends and I wish them the best. I talked to Brad before and after the interview and all he cared about was Emily. Before the interview he asked me as a friend to be there for her and not be to hard on her, which I don’t feel I was. After the interview all he wanted to know was how she was doing. These two care about each other very much and respect each other even more. A lot has and will be written about them but the truth is they are two good people that loved each other very much but as Emily said that just wasn’t enough to make it work. I have a lot of respect for Brad for deciding not to show up, yet giving Emily his blessing to do the interview and speak freely. I can’t say enough about how impressed I am with Emily. I always have been blown away by the strength of this woman and she continues to impress. However sad the news I’m glad that the millions of fans that have followed their saga have gotten the answers they deserve. I hope you also got a chance to go online at our official web site thebachelor.tv to watch my interview with Ali and Roberto. I loved catching up with them and was happy to see how well they are doing.
We’re all on our way back to the states for the infamous hometown dates next week so I’ll see you next Monday night as Ashley continues her journey and her search for love.
It seems weird that some on the show this time seem homesick. When they show them on the dates and out there doesn't seem like there is anyone around except them, I mean there are people in droves shown but they seem all by themselves. I think this has been a hard season for being on this show. All the stuff with Bentley was just there for what reason? It was mean how they set her up for that and then how the bachelors thought it was going to be Emily and it was Ashley and then even bringing Emily back while Ashley's show is on taking 20 minutes out of her big finale before the HTD's. Poor Ashley...it was sad when she said she just wasn't cut out for this and was crying and saying she just wanted to go home. I heard her say it a couple of times or more and seems like i heard one of the guys say it too but I'll have to watch again to be sure. It sort of has a depressing vibe. .....I bet that smoke in the train was really scary especially being inside a tunnel.
Thank you, Chris Harrison. You win the award for using the most words possible to say absolutely nothing at all.
It would seem depressing to be in a foreign land/city and spend most of your time sitting in a hotel room. Most of the opportunities for sightseeing, etc. are just not there in this situation. Bummer for the guys. JMHO.
Doesn't he sound a bit defensive about his interview w/Emily? I felt good about it, I asked the pertinent questions, she answered, etc. Maybe he realized it appeared to be a whole lotta nothing.
I am sure that when CH told the guys that there would be no pressure on the dates because there were not roses I am sure he didn't know what Ashley had planned for Ryan...or he could have...its hard to believe anything that comes out of CH's mouth anymore...he is Fleiss's party line boy....and IMO if you had really listened to the interview with Emily she said more between the lines than she said out of her mouth....Brad said it was 100% his fault and that told me that Brad still had anger and committment issues which Emily pretty much said while dancing around not saying it
Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette' episode 8 | PopWatch | EW.com
We have made it through the infamous hometown dates and now it’s time for the exotic dates. You know what that means… that’s right, the fantasy suite card! Before anybody decides if they will forgo their individual rooms, however, let’s discuss this week. Actually let’s go back to last week first. Many of you asked why Ben stayed overnight with Ashley on his date. The reason he stayed was not exactly romantic: Ashley, Ben, and the crew stayed the night because Taroko is several hours away by car and after a very long day and night we didn’t want to put anybody through that travel. Ben and Ashley did not share a room, nor were they given the option to spend the night together. For that to have happened I would’ve had to whip up a fresh batch of fantasy suite cards, and I was otherwise detained. Now back to this week’s episode.
I say this every season and I mean it, I love hometown dates. Good or bad you can’t fake or hide your family. They are truly where you came from and partially who you really are. We started the week in Cumming, Georgia, to meet Constantine’s great Greek family. They started with some food at the family restaurant Giorgio’s. For the record the food is very good at the restaurant; our crew had lunch there and they loved it. The pizza that Ashley brought the guy at the end of the show was not what he ordered, but he liked it. He had no idea who Ashley was or that she didn’t work there. The important part was meeting the family, and Constantine’s family blew Ashley away — this is exactly what she’s looking for in her life. His mom had some very direct questions for Ashley and didn’t pull any punches in letting her know that her moving to Cumming is what would “enhance” her son’s life. Constantine had no idea his entire family was showing up. Everyone brought food and drink and then in a great Greek tradition his uncle started to make it “rain.” Constantine might have been considered the dark horse a few weeks ago but because of the last couple weeks he has definitely moved out of that role and into Ashley’s heart.
I think everybody was looking forward to the next hometown the most. Everybody wanted to see more about Ames, so off to Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania, we went. Although Ashley was also curious to find out where a guy like Ames came from, he really had the most to prove on his visit. He had to really blow Ashley away to raise their relationship to the level of the other contestants. His sister really put it best: If there’s passion and a spark then let there be a little fire. There is no fire between them. At least not one that’s burning nearly as hot as it is with the other guys. The part of their date I really wanted to talk about was the carriage ride. One minute I’m watching this romantic picnic, the next thing they’re on a horse drawn carriage ride along the river. Turns out carriage rides are a very popular activity in Chadds Ford and some friends of Ames’ family allowed them to use their carriage.
The next and easily most revealing hometown was with Ben in Sonoma, California. I’m very interested to hear everybody’s thoughts on Ben after this episode. Up to this point I know everybody liked him but I felt like in this episode and on this date you really got to know him on an intimate level. He revealed so much about himself and his feelings about his late father, and I’m interested to hear your thoughts on him now. Ashley is already taken by him but was really moved by his open, candid emotions. His dad’s death has really affected him but he seems to have turned that into a positive. He has definitely evolved as a man and has great perspective on his life now. Ben’s talk with his mom was incredibly moving. I think it’s great that our hometown date really seemed to bring the two of them closer together as well.
The final hometown date took us to New York to see JP. JP had made other plans outside but the forecast called for rain so he called an incredible ’80s audible, roller skating! Yes, it was kind of cheesy but it was also kind of awesome. Come on, who didn’t have flashbacks of their own “couples skate” moments? I for one was transported right back to White Rock skating rink in Dallas. (Kirsten if you’re out there somewhere, thanks for the memories.) Ashley hit it off with JP’s family. His mother made his favorite lasagna and apparently it’s amazing, not that they saved me a slice.
After the four hometowns with four good men I think it was clear that Ashley really has a solid relationship building with Ben, JP and Constantine. Ames was just too far behind and Ashley felt more of a friendship than a budding romance with him. So Ashley is finally down to her final three and it’s off to Fiji for our final two weeks. As you saw in the previews there is a lot left, and did you hear what she said at the end of the teaser? “I fell in love… today marks the first day of my love story.” Hmmmm , just a couple weeks left in Ashley’s journey to find love.
I want to share the dates of our final shows because it’s a little different this season. Next Monday, July 25, will be the exotic dates and we will be down to the final two men. Then on Sunday, July 31, ABC will air the Men Tell All special. Monday, August 1 will be the finale of The Bachelorette. I look forward to all of you experiencing this season’s amazing finale.