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TV Review: Bachelor Rome – Episode 5 – Romance Jumps the Shark

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First, apparently it’s not true three bachelorettes tried to leave the show after the news broke that Ryan Phillippe and Reese Witherspoon have separated. There is also no truth to the rumor any lady said anything about Ryan being a real celebrity and not just some guy from the Home Shopping Network.

By the way, Ryan Phillippe as the Bachelor would be huge. Can you imagine an episode where Reese comes by to choose his one on one dates? They could even use the house from Cruel Intentions.

Second, John Kerry apparently has cancelled his appearance on the finale after his diplomacy lessons with Erica encountered some sort of snafu. Come to think of it, Erica is college educated and has had a good life, why are people with her “breeding” and talent volunteering for overseas duty that includes fantasy suites but not for the war in Iraq? It’s good that hard working, college educated young people like my friends Jenna and Barbara have volunteered in Iraq. Otherwise, people might get the wrong impression of wealthy young Americans.

You’re a student of the Bachelor and you’ve made the final four, which means you get a hometown visit. Your best friend just happens to appear at the door mid-date with a wedding dress for you to try on. A real student of the Bachelor would refuse to try on any gown that wasn’t pink. I’m sure everyone is talking about the wedding dress, the bridal magazines, and the repeated revelation of Lisa’s timetable as the kiss of death for her ambitions on the show. I do agree Lorenzo is more likely to “cut and run” with Lisa than he is to “stay the course”. For one thing, Lisa’s plan doesn’t seem to figure in anything about actually having feelings for Lorenzo himself. Men are funny that way sometimes. Many are okay having sex with strangers, even if it’s on a floatie in the middle of the lake, but most would rather not marry one — a stranger, that is.

I’ll tell you the real kiss of death for Lisa Borghese’s plan. She brought a dog along on the hometown date and Lorenzo, the dog lover, appeared to be completely uninterested. In fact, he was so uninterested that he passed up his chance to include Lisa’s dog in Mom’s pilates session.

They’d also have a hard time convincing me the producers didn’t put Jennifer’s dad up to the whole gun thing. You’re going to be on national television and you naturally want America to think you meet your only daughter’s date with a cocked shotgun? I mean, the guy’s never going to get to be the coach on next season’s installment of Two a Days. By the way, Jennifer’s family has a dog, or a rat with hair dressed like a dog, and Prince Lo, dog spa magnate, basically ignores this one, too. This guy’s a bit on the cold side. It would have been great TV for Dad to have taken a shot or two at the dog. I’m not saying hit the critter, just make the animal think twice about licking Jennifer’s toes in front of the camera.

By the way, I don’t blame Dad. He asks the guy, “What do you like about my daughter?” Prince Lo’s basic answer is, “Well, she looks really hot and well, uh, um….I can’t find anything wrong with her personality.” I wouldn’t get out the shotgun, but that answer was down there with Moana's, “He totally rocks my world.”

Again, I don’t think the preview-hyped second amendment lesson had much to do with Lorenzo’s supposed “hesitation” at the end of the date. This was, after all, a woman who was perfectly comfortable kissing a shark, then throwing the creature back in the water. Can we say “plenty of fish in the sea, your highness"?

Talk about your metaphors! If this were a book, we’d call it the The Young Bachelorette and the Sea. Do you think if he were alive today that Hemingway would be watching reality TV? Hemingway aside, had Jennifer not gotten her rose, this would have been the ultimate "jump the shark" moment, or at least "kiss the shark". I could see the guy maybe getting into something like The Amazing Race or Fear Factor.

They talk about the bachelorettes getting a bad edit, but I have to say the whole Agnese Venice home date really hurt Lorenzo. The date itself went well enough. Lorenzo went on with the language barrier business and then this lovely gentle foreign movie scene played out. Lorenzo and familia Agnese were dancing around the living room in carnival masks. Lorenzo tasted various northern Italian delicacies. Most of all, he grabs Agnese in the gondola and makes like that whole thing from A Little Romance and Il Ponte Sospiro. Agnese even channels Lisa briefly and shows Lorenzo the church she where she wants to be married (producers must have been salivating for that wedding), with Lorenzo voicing over that very moment with “Agnese is the perfect tour guide.”

The only problem with this whole exercise in feelings and romance — somehow being beyond words or language itself — is that Lorenzo dumped the woman with whom he appeared to have the most palpable romantic chemistry. She even gets the most eloquent line in this entire installment on her ride in the limo of shame and its live video camera, “Too much head and not enough heart.”

Lorenzo is sensible enough and appears to be a nice guy, but that sums up the problem with Bachelor Rome. It’s not supposed to be about accountants. They were trying to sell us on romance with a prince. This was the guy who said, “I’m more concerned that a woman have a good heart,” and who they put through the whole Pretty Woman parody.

Dude, you want to be practical? Let me give you a bit of advice. "If you’re going to let your tongues intermingle like that, they’re already speaking enough of the same language." If this wasn’t viciously edited, you led her on and the whole “I want to communicate more easily” thing was a cop out. You’re more like a prince who uses your royal name to open a casino than any prince from a fairy tale — Prince Charmin instead of Prince Charming.

I’m convinced that the main point of the Sadie visit was to have the family say grace at the table shot by the camera crew from Wife Swap. There’s also this great moment when Sadie tells her mother Lorenzo reminds her of “Dad.” Not only is this Electrafying confession a bit disturbing, it’s also pretty obvious Sadie’s dad and Lorenzo have, like, nothing in common. We next see Lorenzo and Sadie by one of the fire pits after dark at Moonlight Beach.

I’ve hung around the very same fire pit with my wife and her family. One of the last times, there was a group of guys by the fire pit next to us who had gotten either so drunk or so stoned that one of them stopped breathing while one of his friends babbled at us incoherently and attacked us for not doing more to help out. We called 911 and they took the fellow to the hospital while the police questioned his friend. Somehow, our own cookout wasn’t quite the same after that. Anyway, I kept waiting for a whole Baywatch rescue scene to unfold around Lorenzo and Sadie instead of “I want you to choose me and kiss me again, Prince."

I’m down with the whole "you can be intimate and affectionate" while still, um, "guarding your heart" vigilantly, but Sadie is surprisingly physically aggressive. The previews do promise a test of her resolve in two weeks, when Lorenzo plays his fantasy suite card. Nah… even Mike Fleiss wouldn’t try to make money off of a scene of someone giving up her virginity on television. While we're at it, am I the only one who thinks Sadie might be trying to do Reese Witherspoon's character from Cruel Intentions?

Finally, after five “We’ll hear more from Erica” lead-ins to the commercial break, Erica’s actual contribution to this episode was to talk incoherently about champagne milkshakes?

I say have her volunteer for duty in Iraq instead of putting her on future installments. Not to turn too somber, but you want to talk about people worth our attention — between episodes of Lorenzo and his harem, that is — look elsewhere.

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About Chancelucky

  • http://bonamassablog.us Joan Hunt

    Congratulations! This article has been selected for syndication to Advance.net, which is affiliated with newspapers around the United States.

  • http://www.chancelucky.blogspot.com chancelucky

    Joan,
    thanks for sending it to Advance.net