July 17, 2017

The Bachelorette: Rachel Meets the Families

7/17/2017 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 7

Rachel heads to her first hometown date with Eric in Baltimore, Maryland. They shoot some hoops, get a visit from Eric's friend/wingman, and hear more about Eric's tough life growing up in his old neighborhood. The family visit is big for Rachel, but maybe even bigger for Eric who has never brought a girl home to meet them. His family is so welcoming and excited, but not afraid to ask the real questions about race and her role as The Bachelorette. Eric has the ability to talk and mend fences with his parents about their past, but talks about how he's ready to find love with Rachel. Rachel loves how Eric challenges her and they get through it together. Around the table, Eric makes a wonderful toast about his family making him the man he is today. Eric tells Rachel how strong his feelings are and is close to saying "I love you" without it being the exact phrase.

It's off to Miami for a date with Bryan, complete with a rip-off of the Miami Vice theme song. Bryan and Rachel play a quick round of dominoes for a hot second, then head off take in some snacks and dancing. Bryan gives Rachel the lowdown of everyone he'll be meeting and gives the warning about his mom being protective of him. Rachel's a little nervous to meet his mom given her involvement in the dissolving of Bryan's last relationship. When Bryan says "I know she's the one," mom makes a very odd facial expression and urges him not to rush. Rachel tells Bryan's mom how she loves his confidence, openness, and how wonderful he treats her. It all goes well with mom and the family, and even better with Bryan who tells Rachel he's in love with her. 

Rachel meets up with Peter in Madison, Wisconsin and both are wearing gray to complement Peter's salt and pepper hair (I can only assume). They wander a farmer's market to pick out flowers and eat some treats before meeting up with Peter's friends at a bar. Peter takes the guys aside to level with them about how he's scared about three weeks from now he's supposed to propose. This is a running theme with Peter, who talks to his mom about this and Rachel expresses this as her main concern. Peter's mom thinks he's ready for a commitment but maybe not a proposal and Rachel's not super pleased to hear this. Peter tells Rachel he's very hopeful and happy, as is Rachel... but she's still nervous the amount of time for this process might not be enough.

The hometown dates conclude with riding four-wheelers with Dean in Aspen, Colorado. Dean explains to Rachel that he'll meet his siblings as well as his dad, a converted Sikh yogi who he hasn't spoke to in two years. Dean is terrified about this but Rachel tries to soothe his nerves. Inside, there's some gong meditation and a tribute to Dean's mother, who passed when he was fifteen. But overall Dean is still very uncomfortable and has time alone to talk with his dad and confront their issues. Rachel tries to talk to Dean's dad but he's a bit thrown off by the evening and doesn't want to proceed with the night, but invites her back if they continue their relationship. Rachel heads inside to talk to Dean who has had an overwhelming night but tells Rachel he's falling in love with her.

With four hometowns complete and only three roses available, Rachel talks to Chris Harrison who offers up deep conversation like "What was his family like?" You're getting rusty, Harrison. It's time for Rachel to make her decision and convenes the Rose Ceremony. Unfortunately, it is Dean who does not receive a rose. They say their goodbyes and part cordially, though Dean is upset he said he was falling in love and Rachel sort of said the same back.

[All images credited to ABC]

July 10, 2017

The Bachelorette: Swissed and Dismissed

7/10/2017 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 6

It's off to Geneva, Switzerland this week with Rachel's finale six, though of four of them you have any vested interest in (unless you like terrifying doll likenesses). This week there's no Rose Ceremony and instead roses on the 1-on-1 dates and the group date.

Surprise, surprise: the first 1-on-1 date is with Bryan who is clearly the frontrunner of the season. Rachel and Bryan embrace the luxury lifestyle of Switzerland, cruising in a Bentley, making out on a boat, and buying fancy watches...on ABC's budget. They continue to connect and by that I mean talk and makeout in various scenic locations, leading to the usual romantic dinner. Since family visits are next week, Rachel wants to get a better sense of Bryan's background and life growing up. Also, Bryan reveals his last relationship was passionate but it ended because his girlfriend and mom didn't hit it off - which is a bit intimidating for next week. It comes as no surprise that Bryan gets the date rose and the fancy empty theater they're "dining" and the night continues with more making out while violins appear in the theater boxes to serenade them.

Dean's date card asks him to put on his "Sunday best" to go to a French Catholic mass together which screeeeeeeeeeams romance. After church they walk around the quiet city and Dean looks visibly uncomfortable, dodging Rachel's more serious questions. In Dean's defense, favorite dinosaur is something you should ask on a first date. But Dean's awkwardness stems from the thought of bringing Rachel to his hometown into his awkward family situation. At dinner Rachel tells Dean she loves his fun side but needs to hear from the real side, so Dean opens up that his family visit is not going to be happy-go-lucky like all the rest of the guys. Dean's honesty and openness is exactly what Rachel likes and hopes she can meet whoever is the most important to Dean in his hometown, family or not. Rachel gives Dean the date rose and they head outside to "explore" (kiss with a view).

Rachel takes Peter in a helicopter to visit the Alps in the final 1-on-1 date of the week. Ditching one mode of transportation for another, the couple debarks the helicopter for a dog sled ride through the snow-capped mountains. Peter admits to Rachel that it's been hard to watch her date other guys and even pondered if it was worth staying, but he feels their connection is so strong. They ditch the parkas for formal wear and head to an estate for full-size glasses of wine and more conversation. Peter talks about the family members Rachel will get to meet and how close he is with his family and friends (and yes they'll love her). Rachel wonders if they'll be concerned she's Black (no) and then reveals a lot about his last break-up which didn't end well and he holds responsibility for it. But red flag time: Peter's honesty that if he's not 100% ready for marriage at the end of this experience he won't propose scares Rachel. She's a little scared of the risk but she's super into Peter, so he gets the date rose and then they kiss on a balcony.

The last date in Switzerland has three guys (Eric, Adam, Matt) and only one rose. The group hops on a boat and sail over to France for the day to chill at a fancy estate. Eric gets alone time first and talks about how he gets so happy around Rachel now after a rocky start. He suggests they toast for this to be hard but worth it. Next up is Matt who we've seen maybe for three minutes total before this episode and he's still holding on hope that there could he happiness together but he doesn't have any idea about his future invisible edit. Rachel begins to cry because she thinks they're so similar but other relationships have moved faster and she's going to have to let him go. Matt leaves Rachel and takes his champagne to go. Fast forward to the night portion of the date, which has transformed into a 2-on-1 with Eric and Adam, a guy who has had no air time but to complain about the word "difficult" and have a doll doppelganger. He asks if she thinks they could fall in love to which she says yes, and then he goes on a long ramble about how strong his feelings are and how when they're together he forgets everything else but her. Adam is so excited to bring her home to his family. Eric also can't wait to bring Rachel home to Baltimore and she'd be the first girl to meet his family, but shares more about the tough life he experienced which made him become a positive person. Rachel insists she's torn by the decision and in the moment perhaps but to the viewer it's no surprise when Eric, who actually has been on this show, gets the rose and Adam is eliminated.

[All images credited to ABC]

June 27, 2017

The Bachelorette: Dating in Denmark

6/27/2017 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 5 - Night 2

Kenny and Lee's 2-on-1 date continues with lots of bleeping as Kenny gets upset about the lies. Rachel decides to dump Lee on the date and continue the date with Kenny to see if maybe there is a connection worth pursuing. But Kenny puts Rachel on hold, much to her chagrin, to go back to Lee and confront him again and tell him there's a decent person inside him. Just stop, dude. Rachel knows Kenny is there for her but isn't sure if she can trust him, but also wonders how he'll react in a relationship with her. Rachel sees sincerity and a genuine person with Kenny and gives him the date rose. Kenny then calls his daughter and had a good cry sesh.

It's time for a Rose Ceremony and we're thankfully spared a cocktail party again. Clearly Rachel knows who she's digging... and it's not an overconfident Josiah. Josiah and Anthony are eliminated. Now Rachel and her remaining men are headed to Denmark for their next batch of dates.

Eric scores the first 1-on-1 date in Denmark, exploring the city of Copenhagen together and getting to know each other. There's also a random hot tub park so of course they partake and then get flashed by a very overeager hot-tubber. Before dinner, they make a stop at Tivoli which is a pretty awesome amusement park where they have a blast together. Over burgers that they don't touch, Eric opens up about being an overly good kid but didn't receive a lot of love as a kid, so it was hard to reciprocate those feelings in the past. But he knows he's falling for Rachel now. Rachel gives Eric the date rose which he very enthusiastically accepts, sharing a kiss and then a thrilling ride on a rollercoaster. Maybe it's best they didn't eat the burgers.

The group date guys row out to sea on Viking ship then debark to compete in some Viking games wearing some sweet costumes. And Uggs. The games are a lot of pushing and shoving each other out of a circle, but only two men will compete in the finals for Rachel's heart. The two best competitors are Kenny and Adam who grab shields and swords and fight, both eventually splitting their eyebrows by banging each other too hard with shields. The group cleans up for cocktails and more time to bond with Rachel. Rachel and Bryan continue to grow closer, talking about what city they'd live in and if his family would accept her. Kenny is feeling the most insecure because he hasn't had a lot of time with Rachel and hates being away from his daughter. The two have a frank conversation about their relationship status and given where they are at this point, it's sort of mutually agreed the best place for Kenny to be is home with his daughter. Rachel gives the date rose to Peter who she appreciates she never has to question where they stand.

Rachel's last date of the week is a 1-on-1 with Will where they hop on a boat to leave Denmark and head to Sweden for the day. They meet an old-ish married couple and they have a lot more chemistry going on than Rachel and Will. Despite a lot of sightseeing with lots of awkward pauses, Rachel still continues on to see if the night portion is better. They return to Copenhagen, Denmark in an old brewery and the giant copper vats are very cool. Will thinks their day date was such a great time but Rachel isn't as sure. Rachel asks about what he has looked for in a woman, and Will explains he's typically has dated white women. Will opens up about wanting love again and that great feeling, but unfortunately it will not be with Rachel who really hoped for a little more of a physical connection. Will apologizes for working harder on building the friendship than the relationship and the two part.

The dumpfest in Denmark wraps up with one last Rose Ceremony, kicked off with a quote from Hamlet (a real play of romance). With only four roses to hand out, and only two guys with hardly any screentime all season, it seems like an obvious choice that one of those will go home. But it's not! Somehow Adam and Matt both score roses and it's Alex who is eliminated.

[All images credited to ABC]

June 26, 2017

The Bachelorette: Matters Of The Heart and Handball

6/26/2017 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 5 - Night 1

Picking up where we left off, it's still the never-ending group date finally ends with Bryan making out with Rachel and getting the date rose. Lee and Kenny continue to go at it, and there's a lot of bleeping but I definitely know when you're bleeping the phrase "balls on chin." Later, Will explains to Lee that using the term "aggressive" against a black man may have offended Kenny. Lee doesn't "understand" the race card and boy are my eyes rolling.

After remaining in date-airing-date-limbo, Rachel has her 1-on-1 date with Jack Stone and if that's not the name of a thriller novel protagonist then I clearly need to write the new best seller. Rachel and Jack head to an oyster festival to shuck and suck down some tasty treats and dance. Jack is so into Rachel, overly so in a cringy way that you feel bad for him. Rachel is not feeling Jack and his alarmingly white teeth and that dude can't read the obvious signs that every single viewer can see. Rachel doesn't want to lead Jack on and explains while they have a lot in common, there's a missing energy and connection between them so she's not giving him the date rose.

Rachel forgoes the cocktail party which is a relief so we can get this show on the road. Lee and Kenny's rivalry lives on while Iggy and the Tickle Monster (giving Rachel one last squeeze) are eliminated. Sorry fellas, but you're missing out on a trip to NORWAY!

Bryan accompanies Rachel on the first Norwegian 1-on-1 date where they take in a scenic view high above at the Olympic ski jump... then rappelling down it (with some loud kissing midway). It's the classic Bachelor franchise metaphor date about letting go, trusting your partner, etc. Rachel is super smitten with Bryan and he feels justified in his overconfidence. Over dinner, Rachel opens up about her insecurities and Bryan talks about his past longterm relationship and reiterates his strong feelings for Rachel with an admission that he's falling in love with her. Of course Bryan receives the date rose and they makeout all over the place.

The group date card invites along all the guys except Kenny and Lee, who of course at paired in a 2-on-1 date - but more on that later. The guys put on their best unitards and play a rousing game of handball, which is a much more intense sport in Europe. The guys all try to showoff for Rachel and get noticed, though I'd say Dean's choice of jockstrap on the outside wins the night. Rachel uses the after party to get a better feel for her connections with the remaining men and it's a success as they all open up, some maybe too much (Josiah, who thinks Rachel is the girl of her dreams but doesn't ask about her). Will gets the group date rose, but I'd say Peter doesn't have to be worried considering he spent a reeeeeal long time making out with Rachel in a random group date hot tub.

Kenny and Lee's 2-on-1 Thunderdome date card arrives and each prepare differently: Kenny calls his daughter at home, Lee shines his cowboy boots and reads a book about Norway. A helicopter picks the men up and this date annoys me so much I'm not even excited for a Bachelorette helicopter date. The helicopter lands for the trio to awkwardly sit by the choppy water and pretend this is all normal. Kenny tells Rachel how amazing she is and hopes she'll see the real him, hoping to get away from the drama and back to her. Lee's time alone is immediately about Kenny all the names he called him, which Lee blames on alcohol. Rachel wants clarity but feels she isn't getting the full truth from either, so she pulls Kenny aside again and says Lee said he has a "dark side" and pulled him out of a van, to which Kenny can't believe the lies. But hey, guess we'll finish this off tomorrow since it's to be continued.

[All images credited to ABC]

June 25, 2017

Big Brother 19 Pre-Show Winner Prediction

6/25/2017 Posted by Mel Got Served , , No comments
It's not officially summer until Big Brother is on the air. Well everyone, the time is here! Big Brother 19 begins on June 28 with a two-hour premiere and I'm excited! This cast of all newbies has a great variety and a lot of people I actually like - not to mention actual fans of the show!

While I won't be writing recaps on the blog this year (but follow me on Twitter for blog-esque photo updates), I HAD to continue doing my pre-show winner prediction. As I do every season, I suffer through watch all the Jeff Schroeder cast interviews on CBS.com and read the contestant bios and try to predict the winner. Could this finally be my year?

Melissa predicts....

MATTHEW CLINES will win Big Brother 19

When I saw Matt's video and bio, he popped as winner potential to me. He has charisma but not on a level that will bother people, like many of my past picks. He isn't a major Big Brother fan which could be a detriment but he's a nice guy and hopefully a fast learner. I need to give a shoutout now to my runner-up for winner pick: Christmas. I loved her video and think she's  a great personality and potential player, but her career as a "fitness superstar" might make her a target.

Who do you think will win Big Brother 19? Use the handy form below to submit your pre-show winner prediction. Winners will receive [a picture of a] trophy at the end of the season! 

[All images credited to CBS]

June 19, 2017

The Bachelorette: Blimps and Bees

6/19/2017 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 4

Picking up from the last episode, it's still the cocktail party and many guys are making excellent impressions with Rachel. But then there's Lee, the instigator who after antagonizing Eric decides to interrupt Kenny's alone time to show Rachel that he can carve words into wood. Dean points out Lee's "intolerance" but its not dwelled on much because Kenny is more upset by having his time interrupted. Rachel is feeling a lot of pressure being the first black Bachelorette and let down by the men's drama, pretty annoyed by the whole evening. She calls the Rose Ceremony to order and explains the good conversations helped her get through the nonsense occurring that night. Diggy and some other guy I don't know don't receive roses.

The AirBnB rental of the Bachelor mansion is up, so Rachel and her men head to Hilton Head, South Carolina for the next round of dates. Dean gets the first 1-on-1 date where they get to ride in the freakin' Good Year blimp. Blimps are a dream for Rachel, but a nightmare for height-hater Dean who slightly loses his mind. Nothing a little hand holding (and kissing) from Rachel can't help. Plus the Good Year blimp flies by to inform the men that this is in fact Rachel and Dean's super awesome date. Rachel and Dean move along to the quiet dinner portion, where he talks about his mother passing away from breast cancer and dear god is it sad. But wipe those tears away because there's a concert for Rachel, Dean, and cheering women by a random country singer to close out the night.

Still nursing the wounds of the Good Year blimp's sick burn on them, the group date card arrives to invite men out for a boat ride. The group imbibes some cocktails via Krazy Straw which leads to some poor dancing, poor rapping, a makeshift Limbo competition, and then the guys showing off how many pushups they can do. Rachel also re-enacts the "King of the World" Titanic moment, a true staple of sailing. But this is all just a lead-up to departing the boat to compete in a spelling bee, judged by children. If you're wondering, some of these guys are terrible at spelling (Peter, you won't have coitus if you can't spell it). Josiah wins the spelling bee with the final word of "polyamorous" and the most amount of time BSing. 

The date still goes on with a night portion, which Josiah move along from kissing to sipping booze from his trophy. Rachel and Peter continue to grow closer, with her being open to the idea of moving to Wisconsin. She also enjoys time with Eric and sharing her love of cleaning (he likes hugs). Continuing his streak of being that guy who has nothing to talk about but other guys, Iggy tells Rachel that Josiah isn't right for her. Continuing the streak of throwing men under the bus, Lee babbles on about his argument with Kenny. And so Kenny has to follow-up another meh freestyle with defending the shouting match he had with Lee. Kenny feels worried that Rachel doesn't believe his side and heads inside to get Lee. So, this is how the first 30 minutes will begin next week? Wonderful.

[All images credited to ABC]