Seriously, are these people’s families really so cool with the whole situation? Have they Googled The Bachelor(ette)? Do they know the track record? It always shocks me that more family members don’t say things like “Why don’t you wait to propose, and see how you get along in real life?” or “She seems nice, but cameras are rolling and she’s still dating three other guys”. Anyway, on with the recap – Ali visited Roberto, Chris, Kirk and Frank at home this week.
At this point, I’m starting to wonder if Roberto is like Will Smith in the movie Hitch – a professional dating coach. That guy has smoother moves than a speed skater. From the salsa dancing to the classic “I’ll just stand right behind you and help you swing the bat” move, the guy does everything right. He even gave Ali one of his own baseball cards from when he played on her hometown team!
I loved hearing about Roberto’s family. There’s his dad Roberto, his mom Olga, his sister Olga…and some dude named Peter. I wonder if Peter ever feels left out. Or maybe he just thanks his lucky stars every time someone says “Peter, the phone is for you!”
The problem with these hometown dates is that every time someone does a camera confessional, it sounds like they’re answering a direct question. Like “Do you want your mom/dad to like Ali?” The answer inevitably includes the phrases “important”, “future daughter-in-law” and “very important”. I mean, what do they expect these people to say? I’d love to have seen one guy say “You know, I don’t really care if my family likes Ali. Screw ’em. Their opinions have never mattered that much to me anyway, and to be honest I’d rather be at a movie right now.”
Papa Roberto definitely took the lead with questioning Ali and commenting on the situation, and he came the closest of any family members when it came to scoffing at the whole situation. “It’s hard not to have a good time when you just came from Portugal,” he said. In these shows, so much focus is put on The Bachelor or The Bachelorette as “the prize”, as the one everyone else should be working for. I liked that he said Roberto was “a very big prize” and that he was sure Ali would be happy, but his main concern was that Roberto would be happy.
Things got awkward, though, when Roberto’s Sr. quizzed Ali on her career goals. Apparently her silly little woman’s career shouldn’t interfere with Roberto’s great big man career. He wanted to know what she’d be willing to sacrifice in order to support Roberto and his career. Ali answered well, considering I’m sure she was thinking “Jeez, I dumped Ty last week just to avoid crap like this!” Ali’s answer of “For me to make him happy, I have to be happy. So I would need something that fulfills me, too. For me the question would be first and foremost what’s best for our family,” was probably the best thing she could have said.
Then the family salsa-danced the rest of the night away. Overall, it seemed like a pretty good hometown date.
Chris’ whole family seemed great. He lives in the house with his father, one of his younger brothers is married and the other engaged. I couldn’t help feeling sad for Chris, as he said to his dad that it hurt that his brothers had had the chance to introduce their future wives to their mom, but Chris missed that opportunity. Chris’ dad was incredibly charismatic and funny, but still told touching stories about meeting his wife and the family’s words to live by, “Love is the only reality” – scarily appropriate, right?
Overall, Ali seemed to fit in really, really well with Chris and his family. While I think Roberto is too good to be on a reality TV dating show – couldn’t he find a nice girl in Tampa? – I think Chris is too genuine. There’s too much at stake for him. If Ali hurts him, I think I’m actually going to be angry with her.
First Ali met Kirk’s dad, stepmother and little sister. Not long after Ali arrived at the house, Kirk’s dad said “So, Ali, would you like to see my basement?” And, for the record, I thought he said it in a super creepy way. No one ever says “Would you like to see my basement?” unless they’re either going to kill you down there or show you something unpleasant. Otherwise they say things like “Ooh, come see the basement – we just got it redone!” or “Oh you want to throw those jeans in the wash? Come down to the basement”. Otherwise, anyone who has ever seen a cheesy horror flick will not go down to the basement.
Kirk’s dad didn’t kill Ali in the basement, but death was definitely a theme. The place was packed with stuffed animals – is taxidermy his profession or his hobby? I find it hard to believe that anyone but a museum would want a stuffed bobcat to display. There was also a freezer full of dead animal parts, which may or may not have contained Popsicles and ice cream as well.
The overwhelming theme of Ali’s visit to Kirk’s dad’s house, other than stuffed dead animals, was that Kirk almost never brings girls home.
Next Kirk took Ali to meet his mom, grandmother and sister. His mom had a Snooki poof, which may or may not be worse than the dead animals. I couldn’t decide. They talked some more about the geeky scrapbook that Kirk gave Ali on the first night, his battle against mold, and the fact that he almost never brings girls home. If the promos for next week’s show hadn’t already spoiled the outcome, Ali’s trip to Wisconsin made it painfully clear that Kirk would be crying in his childhood bedroom rather than jetting off to Tahiti.
Frank’s parents seemed to like Ali, but overall I found their hometown visit really, really boring. His family was just too positive, and they accepted the situation too easily. They were more confident in Frank’s relationship with Ali than Frank himself was.
“Thank you, I guess”. That was the best.
So next week Ali takes Roberto, Chris and Frank to Tahiti, and since The Bachelorette likes to give absolutely everything away in the teaser scenes, we know that Frank will drop some sort of relationship-killing bomb on her. I think I know what the deal is (but please don’t post spoilers!), but it would really fulfill my wishes if it was something super-scandalous, like he just found out that he fathered a child in Iceland.
Are you looking forward to next week’s show? How many buckets of tears do you think Ali will cry?