The Bachelorette – Season 8, Episode 3 – Emily Maynard surprises Chris with a performance by Luke Bryant on their one-on-one date. Later, Emily's friends question the 12 bachelors on the group date and Dolly Parton gives Emily and Arie a private concert at Dollywood. (ABC)more pics »Just in time for this week’s release of the dark reworking of Snow White starring Kristen Stewart, last night’s episode of the Bachelorette took cues from the original fairytale, with 16 dudes filling in for the dwarves.
Things kicked off with a return to Bachelorette form: an extreme sports challenge coupled with a forced metaphor about relationships courtesy of 25-year-old Chris, aka Baby.
Being that this series is set in Charlotte, the producers settled for a local restaurant in place of the usual national monument, and Chris’s assurances: “Climbing a building is definitely like love, you’ve got to start somewhere and we’re starting at the bottom,” he informed us, before dipping from his wise-beyond-his-years pool of knowledge about the way climbing works “we’re going to work our way up, and we’ll end up at the top.”
Still, if we weren’t wholly convinced, our Bachelorette, who managed to dress for her target demographic (or at least her target demographic when she was 25) in a distressed tank top emblazoned with a motorcycle and black skinnies and silver hoop earrings, surely was: “I want a man who stays by my side through good and bad,” she reminded us. “So this is the perfect test.”
Yes, we always say, if it’s going to last, see how he copes with a harness aperitif.
After a steamy high-five to celebrate their Spidie skills, the two settled in for dinner and a conversation in which Chris attempted to gloss over his age by reminding Emily that he left for college at the age of 17 (as opposed to the 50% of college freshman who leave for college when they’re 18, which makes him more like 25.5 years old in life experience terms), and otherwise focused on their mutual attractiveness.
Next up: the group date, in which Emily invited her mommy posse to grill the contenders, while she distracted them by tossing around a football in her cutest daytime outfit yet: a floaty green and white striped blouse paired with her umpteenth pair of denim shorts, in this case, a ragged edged dark denim incarnation.
Our favorite cast member from Real Housewives: Charlotte was, of course, Wendy, a lascivious blond with a taste for making men do push-ups, a preoccupation with cheating, and a way with a catchphrase: “Can’t get fat on that one,” she trilled in reference to Ryan, aka Dopey, who earned his nickname by interrupting the ladies’ girl talk to remind Emily that were she to gain weight after they got married he’d love her but not “love on” her.
Em’s pals went on to strip-search Faithy, aka all-American Christian Sean, and even gave Stevie his very own dwarf name, Jersey. (It was just in the nick of time too, since he would later be the one sent home at the rose ceremony.) But not before the guys’ kidpatability was put to the test on the playground via a busload of rowdy kids who Emily terrifyingly conjured with a whistle.
Once Jef was convinced to vacate the slide, the Bachelorette rewarded her suitors with an adult-only dinner and a fashiony nighttime ensemble that won our much coveted Favorite Sequined Separate Yet Award: a gold and brown geometric patterned mini (left).
Unfortunately, parental supervision hadn’t quite wrapped for the day, and Emily had to send Weepy (aka single dad Tony) home for a permanent time out. The rest of the men praised her selfless choice, because it was incredibly selfless of her to
Finally, it was time for a one-on-one date with Dreamy, aka Arie, and a trip to Emily’s happiest place on earth: Dollywood. And who do you imagine they met there? Yes! You got it! It was the bedazzled country legend herself, who even penned a song in the would-be couple’s honor, and sequestered Emily for a heart-to-heart.
Said chat proved a better aphrodisiac for Emily than a boatload of oysters wrapped in denim shorts, because before long she was making out with Arie on a carousel as viewed through a Vaseline smeared camera lens.
But it can’t all be fun and scenes from Japanese karaoke videos, it was time for Emily to get insulted while wearing a glittering gold spaghetti strap gown and a splash of perfume. (For those of us without smell-o-vision, daughter Ricki helpfully described said scent as eau de “Millie’s house.”)
First up on the charm offensive was Sleazy, aka helicopter luxury guy Kalon: “I love it when you talk but I wish you’d let me finish” he cooed.
Next up, Creepy, aka self-proclaimed gypsy king Alessandro, who earned himself a limo ride home after he had the nerve to use the c-word with our Emily—that’s ‘compromise’—as in: compromise is what he’d be doing if he ended up with her and her daughter.
At this point, the nicest thing anyone had done for Emily all night was courtesy of Freaky, aka Travis, who decided to destroy that bizarre giant egg he’s been carrying around, which, if we remember correctly, was meant to illustrate the way he’d treat Emily and her daughter?
Clearly it all sent Emily running back to Dreamy for a smoochfest in the corner, which in turn left Dopey no choice but to rename the racecar driver “Dainty.”
“He’s more of a dainty man and I’m more of a physical guy,” Ryan explained, adding, “I know how to compete, so Arie’s in trouble.”
Yes, Arie certainly has his work cut out for him. He may be a racecar driver (an occupation we all know Emily is partial to), he may come with Emily’s lifelong hero’s seal of approval, and he may have devastatingly good looks and a proven record with single moms, but does he even know how to love on someone? Is that even something you can learn?
It’s going to be a nailbiter.
See more photos from Episode 3 here: