The Bachelor Finale Recap: Higgins' Decision
Maybe Chris Harrison’s all-blue ensemble had me hypnotized tonight, but I genuinely felt like it was the most dramatic Bachelor finale ever. Turns out, you don’t need an angry family member or suddenly surfacing snail mail from an ex to build the tension. You just need exactly what would blow minds in real life: one guy telling two girls he loves them and ping-ponging back and forth between their Sandals corner suites, tearfully refusing to figure it the hell out already. The whole thing felt stressful from start to finish—and then really, really stressful at the finish. Let’s dive in like Ben and Jojo did at the eloquently named “Blue Hole.”
Episode MVP: Ben’s pastor
Who ever said these finale live audience segments were worthless? At the producers’ behest, Ben’s pastor got to re-read the entire Bible and pace a tiny hallway, like a God-fearing hamster.
Most disappointing lack of backstory: Lauren and Ben’s mom clutching each other
How did this happen? America needs to know. My best guess: Ben’s mom reached for her wine and Lauren misunderstood, tragically separating Ben’s mom and Ben’s mom’s wine when they needed each other the most. Surely, this was the moment Ben’s mom liked Lauren least until she saw tonight’s episode and realized that Lauren’s favorite jean shorts look like they were pulled from the rubble of a fire.
Coldest comfort: Ben’s pre-elimination consolation prize speeches
Ben told both Lauren and Jojo that no matter what happens, they “stood beside him.” OK. That counts for… exactly nothing. I mean, in their position, I’d rather he remind me that if he didn’t propose to me, I’d get to quit my almond and watercress diet twelve hours earlier than the other girl.
Least effective strategy: Kiss-ault
Ben thought he might be able to simplify his decision by injuring one of the girls with painful looking kisses. Alas, both have the neck flexibility of a lady ghost in a foreign horror movie.
Most annoyed at this episode: Jojo’s actual best friend
Somewhere there’s a girl who’s been going on bad Grouper dates and eating Reddi Whip with Jojo for six months as she licks her breakup wounds—only to spend tonight listening to Jojo call Higgins her “best friend” at every turn. And I know how this girl will spend tomorrow: stopping by Jojo’s place to passive-aggressively collect the Sex and the City DVDs she lent her.
Hollowest words: “Hey beautiful”
Since there are 50,000 ways to greet another human being, maybe try not to give your entire harem the same opener.
Biggest source of confusion: Bathroom rules
People on reality shows never seem clear on whether they can be seen or heard in the bathroom. Whispery Jojo certainly seems to think that microphones turn off automatically when they’re within three feet of a toilet. Ben, on the other hand, enunciates like he’s trying out for Fiddler, seemingly enjoying getting to test the acoustics of the room. Privacy fail.
Dumbest plotpoint: Ben’s ring revelation
Are we supposed to believe that Ben truly didn’t decide between Jojo and Lauren until Neil Lane slut-shamed him into it? C’mon. If I found out my boyfriend had a little to-do list in his pocket that said “buy ring—FOR ???—figure out who on way there,” nothing could make me say… what’s that? How many carats? A hundred thousand dollars? Well, I guess I could always graciously accept, then hock the ring and skip town as soon as Ben asked me to help him flip through the New Testament for tattoo inspiration.
Most callous rejection: Ben
For all his inner conflict, Ben lets Jojo ramble on about how great he is for a good two minutes before he even steps in, and then he drops the little “I found love with you… but” just to be extra douchey. A true gentleman cuts off the loser after 30 seconds, you know? Now I sort of feel like Ben might just be Juan Pablo inside a Build-a-Bear.
Most believable schtick: Ben and Lauren (maybe, but eventually not) getting married tonight!!!
This seemed insane to me (really? You want to tie the knot in front of that audience dude in the black tee who’s been smiling like a serial killer all night?) until I realized that it behooves Ben to lock Lauren down before she thinks too hard about all the things he said five minutes before proposing to her, such as: “I don’t want to say goodbye [to Jojo]” and “I could’ve married Jojo and been very happy.”
Hardest goodbye: “Unlovable”
Yes, Ben seemed torn up about sending Jojo home—but does anyone else feel like what he’ll miss the most is calling himself “unlovable?” That catchphrase just refused to die.
NO: The “After the Rose” proposal redo
Cool trend idea, guys. Now all our most narcissistic cousins won’t just have three wedding dresses—they’ll have three proposals, too. Sigh. I’m as happy for Ben and Lauren as I am ready for a nice long break from them. If you need them, I assume they’ll be summering at Sean and Catherine Lowe’s house, sampling salsas from the farmer’s market and failing to think of anything to say about them.
Photos: Courtesy of ABC