When I first saw the lineup of guests for this week's episode of The Bachelor, I honestly yelled, "Did I cast this episode?" I fully take credit for introducing several of my friends to Parks & Recreation, and I have shed real tears about how much I love Billy Eichner. I have been in a severe depression ever since I realized I'm never going to win Quizzed in the Face. (If you haven't watched Billy on the Street, it's on Hulu. You're welcome!) But, really, here's the main thing I took away from this episode: If there's ever a time when Chris Harrison feels the need to step away from hosting this show, two-time Emmy Award winner Megan Mullally and her husband, Television Critics Award winner Nick Offerman, should take the reins.
This week's episode was our first "real" episode of the season, and man, it did not disappoint. But this episode could only be improved with more Offerman and Mullally, husband and wife pair and future hosts of this show. Here's a few reasons why they're best suited for the role.
Reason #1: These two wrote the book on love.
Quite literally. Thankfully for Colton, Megan and Nick are on hand to help him on his romantic journey to find love and finally lose his virginity so people will stop talking about it. Wait, no—if he loses his virginity, then all the questions will be about what it was like. Man, I'm breaking out in hives just thinking about it.
Anyway, after an unnecessarily gratuitous selfie cam shot of Colton talking about the day's events (I feel like we've seen Colton shirtless more than any other Bachelor so far, and we're two episodes in), the girls on the date card—Demi, Bri, Tracey, Elyse, The Other Hannah, Nicole, Onyeka, Catherine—all head to the Regents Theatre to share stories of memorable firsts in their lives, and also they're going to do it live on stage in front of 200 people. Megan and Nick's stories are wonderfully dirty, and I hope they get a book deal for a literotica novel. I'm only 40 percent kidding.
Did anyone else cringe as soon as Demi said she wants to prove she's "bold and out there?" Demi got that villain edit early in this season, surprising everyone who was convinced Catherine was That Girl last week. (They wouldn't let a girl with a dog that cute be a villain forever.) They do this every season: you've got your First Night Villain (see: Lace, Chelsea) and your Season Villain (see: Courtney Robertson, Corinne). Demi's clearly taken tips from the Corinne Olympios playbook, though: get sexy early and shame the other girls. I especially loved when she called Elyse "brave" for admitting she was an older woman at 31.
What I do know is that I'm fairly certain no one understands what "firsts" are, save for Elyse (who I adore) and Nicole. Elyse talks about Colton being her First Younger Man and looks amazing while doing so, I love her so much, make her The Bachelorette please. I'm also fairly convinced she's Rhylee from Below Deck's sister, given that they're both from Alaska, have red hair, and look alike. That is the only measurement I have.
Colton goes on stage and talks about his virginity again, and I can no longer see because my eyes have rolled down the hallway, into the street, and are hanging in the bodega next door. We're never going to escape Colton's virginity. Nicole talks about how Colton is the first white guy she's dated, and then it's all nonsense from there. The Other Hannah's first is being handed a “meaningful rose;” Onyeka talks about saving Colton from thirsty girls; Catherine responds to being called thirsty by knocking the mic over; Tracy talks about dating a virgin? And competing for a guy with a friend who then punched her in the face? None of these are firsts. These are just stories.
Then Demi gets on stage, and essentially her first is getting to be the first girl to kiss Colton on a group date, and she basically jumps off stage and leaps on him, before finishing by saying "And that’s the story of how I got the first group date rose." Needless to say, the girls are not thrilled. Tracy, in particular, is perturbed. And when Demi's the first to snatch Colton at the after-party, Tracy is shooketh. And then Demi comes back after her time with Colton and dares to touch the ROSE.
I actually gasped. Harry Potter and the Audacity of Demi.
But Colton does get his time with the other girls, including some sexy fun time with Elyse, who reveals that the girls 27 and up all live together and call themselves "Colton's Cougars," which I both love and hate. As a 27-year-old woman, I am far from a cougar. This show treats women in their 30s like they're geriatrics. But they make out, so it's okay. I love Elyse. Give me more Elyse. Nicole and Colton bond over their mutual...love for taking care of people, I guess? But it's not enough to get her the group date rose, which goes to my queen Elyse. Nicole cries about it. Girl, it's been like four hours.
Back at the house, Hannah Alabama With Bananas gets the date card.
Reason #2: They likely give a lot of toasts!
Unlike Hannah Alabama, who gets the one-on-one date this week. Colton picks her up in a truck that I think I'm supposed to be impressed by and they drive to the desert for this season's first obligatory Hot Tub In The Middle of Nowhere date. Hannah is mad nervous and basically can't think of anything to say other than "mhmmm," and "yeah," and smiling so big it gives the impression she's just trying to hold it together. The worst moment is when he asks her to make a toast, and she just... can't. Isn't part of being a pageant queen being good at the interview portion? It's so awkward, I had the cringe sweats. Megan and Nick certainly wouldn't let this happen, they would have trained her first!
At dinner, Hannah, who couldn't talk at all before then, finally opens up and asks Colton...about his virginity. Head, desk. You don’t say anything all day and all of a sudden you’re asking about a dude’s virginity?
This is also when we get our first hint of future pageant drama on par with my favorite dark comedy, Drop Dead Gorgeous. Caelynn, Miss North Carolina, and Hannah Alabama, Miss Alabama, were roommates at Miss USA, and were the bestest of friends until Caelynn placed and Hannah didn't, after which Hannah turned on Caelynn. They mutually dislike each other, and the beef is USDA grade A, baby.
The next group date card is revealed, and there's 12 girls going on the date: Alex, Erica, Katie, Caelynn, Sydney, Tayshia, Nina, Kirpa, Caitlin, Courtney, Cassie, and Heather.
Can you imagine Billy Eichner, Megan Mullally, and Nick Offerman all ribbing Colton and reminiscing about Parks and Rec and probably calling Amy Poehler? I could have watched an hour of Billy Eichner on The Bachelor, but I can't help but feel like this was a missed opportunity for a round of "For a Dollar," or "Plants, You Can't," or even "IT'S DEBRA MESSING, YOU GAYS." I never knew I needed a Bachelor/Billy on the Street crossover until this moment.
Reason #3: They'll give us Parks and Recreation reunions!
A photo posted by on
But basically, the group date takes place at Camp Bachelor, and they’re gonna have competitions and the losing team has to go back to the mansion, and the winning team gets to spend the night under the stars with Colton. Our teams are Caelynn, Katie, Alex, Cassie, Heather, and Tayshia on the red team, and the yellow team is comprised of Sydney, Nina, Courtney, Erika, Caitlin, and Kirpa.
They do all the camp games—egg in a spoon, wheelbarrow race, the one where you jump in a bag with another person. I don't know, I never went to camp. Then they do a canoe race and I'm shocked no one took the opportunity to knock the canoe over. Also, where were the lifejackets, ABC?
At the house, the losing girls are shook at the "intimacy" of this slumber party, and the girls at Camp Bachelor are all getting in their smooching time with Colton. It seems like everyone is making out with Colton, except for Never Been Kissed Heather, who takes the time to reveal her fun fact to Colton. Their actual interaction: "I've never been kissed before, it's kind of weird." "YEAH." Nice, Colton. Heather's worried her entire time with Colton will be about never having been kissed, and that's exactly what will happen. Look what they did to Colton's virginity!
Anyway, her brave confession gets her a rose.
Reason #5: Imagine how fierce Megan would look at every rose ceremony.
I don't watch The Bachelor for the fashion, but I might if Megan Mullally were wearing ensembles every week. She would show up the girls at every cocktail party. Speaking of cocktail parties, tonight's the first one, and it's a rollercoaster ride.
First, we hear from Courtney, who is 23 years old and trying to convince Colton she's ready to settle down. Then, Colton is with Sydney and they're digging deep when Onyeka comes in with a green sparkly dress and an airhorn that she is not shy about using. Not to be shown up, Sydney responds entirely like an adult and basically gets the entire kitchen to interrupt Onyeka. It's very reminiscent of one of my favorite reality TV moments:
The Demi and Tracy saga continues when Demi, in a white robe, decides to steal Colton away during his Tracy Time to take him to her "fantasy closet." Last I checked, a fantasy closet is the one Cher Horowitz had in Clueless, not whatever weird massage dungeon Demi lead Colton to.
The rose ceremony begins, and Tayshia, Cassie, Caelynn, Courtney, Demi, Nicole, Kirpa, The Other Hannah, Catherine, Bri, Sydney, Onyeka, Katie, Caitlyn/Sasha Pieterse, Nina (who????), and Tracey all get roses. That means we're saying adios to Annie, Alex B., Angelique, and Erika.
Next Week: More shirtless Colton, more Colton makeouts. The Hannah and Caelynn drama heats up. Sydney gets stretched. Demi spanks Colton with a Bird Box blindfold, and Courtney and Hannah Alabama have had enough. See you next week!
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Amanda Mitchell is a writer and podcaster with bylines at Marie Claire, OprahMag, Allure, Byrdie, Stylecaster, Bon Appetit, and more. Her work exists at the apex of beauty, pop culture, and absurdity. A human Funfetti cake, she watches too much television, and her favorite season is awards season. You can read more of her work at amandaelizabethmitchell.com or follow her on Instagram and Twitter @lochnessmanda.
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