After that came the group date, which was a further emotional manipulation of the highest order. The women were told they’d be doing a fashion shoot — yay! — that would help out a charity — double yay! — and there were even fucking puppies — OMF-YAAAAAAYYYY! — involved. Puppies! Adorable, adoptable shelter puppies! And then came the assignment of scenarios and outfits for the photos, which was nothing short of a producer-crafted circle jerk to throw these women into an insecurity-fueled tizzy. Cool story!

Some of the girls were in bikinis. Others had conceptual looks, like a dog or a fire hydrant. And others still were dressed to look like that bastardization of Old Hollywood Glamour that literally no one can get enough of these days. Lucy, the free-spirited naked wonder was initially dressed as a fire hydrant; Kelly the dog lover was painted to look like an actual hairless dog. And Andi and Elise — the goddamn district attorney and first grade teacher — were told they must post straight-up naked, because conceptual integrity or whatever.

I mean, seriously? There are not enough blergs in the world (Liz Lemon, you’ve failed me!) for this nonsense, for so many reasons. First of all: COME ON, ABC. This is just obvious manipulation, telling these women whose integrity is very much tied to upholding a particular image. Clearly someone was baiting these girls for a reaction, or at least playing out some tired old sex fantasies. But also, GIRLS: just fucking say no if you don’t want to get naked. Seriously. No guns to your head, it’s just a TV show. Puppies will not die if you’re not comfortable taking a naked photo.

Of course things were remedied: Andi ended up being swayed when she heard Juan Pablo would be naked, too (solidarity), and Elise asked Lucy to switch costumes, which she was more than glad to do (but not before taking a naked and — I shudder at the thought, more so than being naked — barefoot stroll in Hollywood). Though it was far from cute or appropriate for Elise to then have the gall to complain about the fire hydrant outfit not being cute enough or whatever. Girl. GIRL. Perspective. And also shut the fuck up you got what you wanted.

See what I mean from before though? This barely feels fun to snark-watch anymore. It feels like a gratuitous bashfest against women. Mostly because we have barely anything to make fun of Juan Pablo for — he doesn’t talk except in interviews or his fed little introduction lines. (In fact, my roommate also surmised that he’s likely got an in-ear feeding him the names of the girls during the rose ceremony. Which, let’s face it: seems legit.) So it’s all about the girls, and all about how absurd and inane their edited bits of sad-sack desperation come across. Hey, ABC: if you don’t want people to think those that run your little dog-and-pony show don’t hate women, maybe let Juan Pablo look as dumb as everyone else on the show. We’re sure there’s plenty of comedy on that cutting room floor: I mean, c’mon, the guy barely speaks English. All’s fair in love and making fun of each other.

From there things just got sloppy. Victoria the 24-year-old proved herself emotionally incapable of being a mother figure to Camila (imagine that!) following a case of the schwasties that was impressive even for this show. It was, in no short order, a drunkicane of crazy. She was straight up belligerent and completely inconsolable. It almost made me feel bad for how she probably felt about it now, watching it as a viewer. Almost. Juan Pablo sent her home the next morning in what was an admittedly mature moment (hey, at least he let the talking count this time).

But before we say goodbye to Victoria forever, a moment of recognition for the beautiful life lesson she bestowed upon us this evening: “That’s what life is about, straddling people… and things.” I guess that’s the hymen maneuver.

The night went on quite uneventfully form there, with Nikki stating the obvious: “I feel like I’ve never been in a situation like this.” A valid statement, because you haven’t done anything like this before, have you, Nikki? I think us Internetters would know about it if you had.

In the end Amy’s audition for every on-air personality job in America didn’t cut it with Juanie P, as she was sent packing alongside Chantal, who was apparently really falling for our main dude for some reason. I guess that reason is feelings. Or emotions. Or insecurity — whatever! Ahh, sorry, guys, I forgot: desperation for love isn’t sad and pathetic, it’s totally cute and ~romantic~ right? The journey. It’s all about the journey.

The favorite is still Sharleen the opera singer. Renee the perma-mom was also up there. Oh and question: does anyone want to play the “which professional basketball player is the father of Cassandra’s child” game? Because it’s got to be, right? Somebody else who cares more than I could research that and post their findings somewhere and I wouldn’t hate it. Just saying.

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