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‘The Bachelor’ Recap – Season 17 Episode 8 – Families Weigh In During the Hometown Dates

'The Bachelor'
ABC

On Monday night’s episode, the four remaining women on ‘The Bachelor’ tried to prove that home is where the heart is. Or least where girls who are so desperately in need of validation they’re willing to demean themselves by letting a man they don’t know propose in a game show setting are.

That’s right — Sean packed his bags for yet another whirlwind tour, this time visiting each of the four remaining ladies’ homes and getting a sometimes not-so-rosy look at his prospective in-laws.

Hometown Visit 1 – Houston – AshLee

Here’s what you need to know about AshLee: She’s got major abandonment issues and loves to talk about them. Perhaps that’s why she seems so intent on making these sweeping and somewhat scripted declarations about how she never knew what love was before Sean and she has “been dreaming about this day as far back as [she] can remember.”

She’s not even referring to her wedding day – she’s talking about the day a camera crew follows her to her hometown to trail her and this dude she’s known for about 20 minutes. She sounds like a 7th grader reading “AshLee loves Sean” that she’s written all over her Trapper Keeper.

'The Bachelor'
ABC

Sean didn’t have to try too hard to win over AshLee’s parents. Her mother (remember, AshLee was adopted) acknowledged the abandonment issues and joked that Sean shouldn’t break her heart. There’s probably some seriousness there, though, because the therapy bills would be outrageous.

At the end of the date, AshLee once again dipped into her bag of ‘Bachelor’ clichés and announced, “There’s no doubt I wanna marry this man.” Really? There’s no doubt I, along with an entire generation of men my age, wanted to marry Kelly Kapowski from ‘Saved By the Bell,’ but a little thing called reality got in the way and we dealt with it. Buck up, Ash.

Hometown Visit 2 – Seattle – Catherine

Sean’s date with Catherine got off to a stereotypical start. They caught fish in the famed fish market and took pictures in a photo booth. I thought they’d hold hands in the roller rink, too, before it finally dawned on me this was not 1982.

Sean met Catherine’s mother, grandmother and two sisters, who appeared to try and sabotage her efforts to win this made-for-TV romance. While Catherine gushed about Sean, her sisters seemed skeptical. When they asked if she would accept his proposal, she said, “Yeah, I wanna try this out,” like she was thinking about checking out the new Italian place down the street.

Catherine felt she had to defend her relationship, but things took a turn for the worse when her sisters told Sean she’s messy and moody, proving the old adage that girls can be mean when talking about other girls.

Sean was also miffed when Catherine’s mother didn’t give her blessing if he were to propose. Instead, she says they need to see what happens. This characteristic that is foreign to ‘The Bachelor’ — known as “common sense” — really threw him for a loop, even though he should count his lucky stars.

My in-laws make the Costanzas look like the Cleavers, so I was actually jealous Catherine’s mom exercised such good judgment.

'The Bachelor'
ABC

 

Hometown Visit 3 – Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri – Lindsay

Lindsay, the under-the-radar 24-year-old who talks like she’s 12, continued to do everything right in order to win.

Sean was nervous because her dad is a two-star general (you know you’d be more impressed if he was four-star, right?). Sean really hit it off with Lindsay’s mom — so well you’d think that whenever his relationship with the winner inevitably ends, he can hook up with her. There’s a twist no one would see coming.

Sean met with Lindsay’s dad and asked for his blessing if he should propose. Her father said it was the toughest thing he’s ever been asked and then made some sort of military metaphor before announcing he’s giving Sean the authority to make that decision.

'The Bachelor'
ABC

That’s sweet and all, but does anyone else think it’s absurd a military man can’t control his own daughter from going on ‘The Bachelor’? Clearly, his authority isn’t good and may explain why he’s missing those other two stars.

Regardless, Sean felt great after getting the blessing and it freed Lindsay to finally tell Sean she’s falling for him. It was touching. But not really.

Hometown Visit 4 – Los Angeles – Desiree

Sean and Desiree were making dinner when a nerdy man who looked like a substitute teacher popped in and announced he was still in love with her. It turns out he was her ex-boyfriend! But in the greatest twist since ‘The Sixth Sense,’ this guy was actually an actor and they were pulling a fast one on Sean.

They all had a good laugh and this actor scored a credit on his resume to boost his chances of landing that Pepsodent commercial you just know he’s been dying to get.

'The Bachelor'
ABC

Desiree’s parents and brother soon arrived. Sean easily won over her folks, who seemed thrilled with him. Her tatted-up brother, Nate, though, gave Sean the hairy eyeball from the get-go.

He told Desiree he didn’t think this relationship would work. In the middle of dinner, he asked Sean if they could talk in private (couldn’t that wait until after dinner?) and proceeded to unload, saying Sean is a playboy and didn’t have a connection with his sister.

When Sean said he was crazy about Desiree, Nate said he’s crazy about a lot of girls, which is a really good point. Nate refused to buy into Sean’s claims of sincerity, and they basically didn’t accomplish anything and returned to dinner where the goodwill of the night was sucked out like the soul of a straight man forced to sit through a ‘Twilight’ marathon.

'The Bachelor'
ABC

After Sean left, Desiree and her family bashed Nate for what he did, but he stood by his words. Yes, he comes off as white trash, but he has a point. I don’t know whether to salute him or ask for police protection.

Rose Ceremony

I’m not sure if Sean and his band of merry matrons already polished off all the wine in North America, but there was no cocktail party. Sean admitted he was confused and said he couldn’t figure out whether to send Catherine or Desiree home.

Before he handed out the first rose, Desiree called him aside and apologized for her brother’s behavior, which no one should have to do unless your brother is six and barged in your room while you were making out (wow, there’s a lot of retro references here).

'The Bachelor'
ABC

They returned to the Rose Ceremony and Sean gave out roses to AshLee and Lindsay. Then, Sean put down the third rose and walked out in silence. Whoever lands him is going to have to work on his communication skills. Use your words, Sean.

Chris Harrison (remember him?) fetched him with a look on his face like, “Dude, I’ve got reservations, so can we wrap this up?” Instead, Chris played the part of therapist by reminding Sean to get this decision right and take his time.

When Sean returned, he gave the final rose to Catherine, leaving Desiree in tears. She told Sean he was 100 percent wrong, and he said he’ll miss her. In all honesty, she should save all that raw emotion for her brother Nate, whose confrontation with Sean cost her the chance to pose with phony smiles on scores of tabloids with Sean in another month or so. Way to be, Nate.

Sean, now down to the three girlfriends he constantly says he can picture as his wife, will answer America’s burning questions Tuesday night in a ‘Sean Tells All’ special. We can’t wait.

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