This week brings us to Belgium.
Trigger warning: this post contains discussion about why Belgium sucks.
Weird coincidence that this episode is airing the same week that the United States takes on Belgium in the World Cup. Why ABC decided that this waffle eating, Congo torturing, Flemish speaking, easily conquered, bureaucrat’s paradise was worthy of a visit is beyond me.
This is the week before hometown week, so the pressure is really on the guys to up their game and secure their position. There will be no roses on the one-on-one dates, but there will be a rose on the group date. The guys have jumped out of the frying pan and into the waffle iron.
-Marcus gets the first one-on-one.
It is a classic WALKING AROUND date. Andi says that this is what traveling is all about to her, immersing herself in the local culture. They proceed to walk from touristy shop to touristy shop. Really immersing themselves in the culture. If you want to immerse yourself in Belgium’s culture, try laying down on the street and letting everyone walk all over you.
Marcus starts talking about how he’s been journaling lately. This guy fits right in here in Belgium. At dinner, Marcus discusses how he has struggled with abandonment issues since his dad walked out on the family and how his dad wouldn’t be there on a hometown date. Marcus has been a laid back and soft-spoken guy all season, and Andi seems really happy to see him open up about his difficult childhood. He also drops the love bomb several times and she seems as happy about that as Belgians are about headquartering huge inter-governmental organizations. There’s no rose, but Marcus had a rose-worthy performance.
-After Marcus’ one-on-one, Nick deduces that Andi is staying in the same hotel. He easily fools the Belgian front desk lady into giving him Andi’s room number. No wonder this country is so easy to invade. Nick surprises Andi and they go for a walk. I know all six guys are in Belgium, but Nick seems like the only one getting ready to visit the Low Countries
if you know what I mean. BOSS MOVE OF THE WEEK
-Josh gets the second one-on-one.
Belgium is so boring that they have to have a second WALKING AROUND date. What’s the matter, they don’t have catamarans in Belgium?
But then, Josh and Andi came upon a parade. A marching band of terrifying clowns was leading a parade of geese.
A DANG PARADE OF GEESE. Belgium, maybe you’re alright after all.
In stark contrast to Marcus and Nick, Andi feels that Josh isn’t opening up to her enough. But then Josh drops the love bomb and all is well for Andi. Josh still seems like a anipulative douchebag failure to me, but all he needed to do was say “love” and Andi is more excited than me watching a parade of geese. Andi says “I have one more thing for us to do,” and that “one more thing” is just furiously making out in front of a spotlight and fog machine. Oh, no wait, it’s a private concert from an American folk band. Belgium gets invaded yet again because it’s too lame to provide a final act to a date.
-The final group date: Nick, Dylan, Brian, Chris
Andi takes them out to the countryside for a WALKING AROUND date there. I think this is the first ever walking around date trifecta. But because this is an Andi group date, the guys are going to have to humiliate themselves. They jump on a rail car that they have to pedal like a bike, and Andi is delighted to watch them exert themselves to exhaustion for no reason. They arrive at a monastery, where they evidently have a rule that there is no kissing. Something tells me that rule is going to be violated more often than Belgium’s sovereignty.
Andi takes some time to talk to the guys individually, and decides that NICK will get the rose. As the rose recipient, Nick also gets to spend the rest of the date alone with Andi. They make out while fireworks go off. Tough to say whether they were actually fireworks or if Belgium was just getting shelled by artillery again.
Back at the house, the other guys are unanimous that Nick is a “douchebag.” That is a direct quote. They think he is manipulating Andi and that he will “walk” and leave her like she left Juan Pablo. When Nick gets back they attack him for being too arrogant and for watching past seasons of The Bachelorette. Hey now, guys, let’s not crucify people for watching this show religiously.
Chris brings up the point that he thinks Nick is approaching this as a strategic game rather than a way to form a relationship. That seems like a solid point, but Nick implicitly points out that all of the guys attacking him are objectively stupid human beings. That is a solid counter-point. It is going to be interesting to see how this plays out at the rose ceremony.
Rose Ceremony: Nick, Josh, Marcus, Chris get roses. Dylan and Brian go home. Nothing too shocking there. I thought Brian might have had an outside shot, but it’s hard to argue that those four have been the top tier for a few weeks now.
Best Moment: A dang goose parade
Worst Moment: There are many, many things wrong with Belgium. But it has one redeeming feature: beer. For being such a small and pointless country, Belgium is one of the great producers of beer in the world. Belgium is famous the world over for the beer brewed by its Trappist monasteries, a tradition that dates back centuries. Andi took the guys to a monastery in Belgium, AND THERE WAS NO MENTION OF BEER. Andi, you have dragged these guys all over the world. You have made them strip in public, you have made them act like mines, you have made them hang out with JJ the pantsapreneur. They have been through a lot. The least you could have done is throw them a bone and let them spend an afternoon at a beer-making monastery.
Right/Wrong Reasons Tally: 14.
4. Chris (Farmer, 32)
Chris seems to be falling behind some. Andi still likes him and he pulled some good moves this week like pulling her aside several times during the group date. But it seems like her relationship with the other guys is accelerating quickly and he’s just pedaling a rail car.
3. Marcus (Abandoned, 25)
Marcus finally showed that he gives a shit by confronting Nick about whether he is there for the right reasons.
2. Josh (Former success, 29)
Andi claims that she has her guard up with Josh but her guard is worse than Belgium’s because all it takes is for him to say a few words and she melts right in his hands like she was Belgian chocolate.
1. Nick (Strategery, 31)
Nick is really pissing off the other guys. They claim it is because they think he is treating this like it is a game to win rather than a show where he is supposed to fall in love. But really it is because everything he’s doing is working.
BOLD PREDICTION: The guys will get some revenge on Andi when they get her in their hometowns and will make HER do embarrassing stuff. It will backfire on Josh when he asks her to throw him batting practice and he swings and misses on all of her underhand throws.