'The Bachelorette': Cloud 9 and a message in a bottle (that smashes on the rocks, probably)

desiree-brooks-bachelorette.jpgDesiree and her "Bachelorette" contestants have jetted off to Madeira, an island off the coast of Portugal and Morocco. Looks beautiful.

It's also time to lop off one unlucky fella whose family Desiree will not meet. Who ya got? We would say that out of Brooks, Chris, Drew, Michael and Zakkkk that Michael is the one heading home. *kitty!*

Drew says, "[Madeira] is built for love." The "as am I" is left unsaid.

Catherine, Jackie and Lesley are there to help Desiree decide! Fun times. Sure, it's weird to invite the girls who were also vying for your last boyfriend's heart, but ... nah, we don't care. We heart Jackie, Catherine and Lesley!

They chat about the men, all of the good points for Dez on each guy, but she doesn't say anything too specific, of course. Really, there's no reason for the girls to be there unless they get to meet the guys -- and no sooner do I type that then here come the guys.

Except it doesn't seem like the girls are going to hang out with the guys, just scope them out with binoculars (like a creeper, like Jackie says). Things get a little "Sex and the City" when Catherine asks who has the biggest package and Desiree posits that it's probably Chris. But as Catherine says, you never know.

You know what would be fun? If I got to tag along on the next "Bachelor" season. Not as a contestant, I am a deliriously happy married woman. But just to hang with the ladies and go on the group dates. That'd be so fun. Hook it up, ABC!

Brooks' Date

They are cruising around in a wind-up toy car that only goes 20 mph, because clearly there is a line of cars behind them getting ready to lay on the horns. Seriously, it's surprising there's no footage of them having to get out and push the car up the hill.

Eventually, they drive up a mountain that takes them through and above the clouds. That's beautiful, what an amazing place. Also, this date just seems easy. It just seems like they are very comfortable and easy together, which is key.

There are too many "cloud" puns and metaphors for us to keep track, so just chug your wine
and go get another glass.

That night, -- kitty! -- they dine on a roof top and we thought we had escaped the cloud talk, but no. Stop it, guys.

Talk turns to the hometown dates. Brooks is nervous about his family getting attached to her, plus Desiree is nervous about the guys wanting her to meet their families. Also, I cannot abide Brooks' fugly sweater over a denim shirt. What is happening there? No bueno, Brooks. You look like Cliff Huxtable meets a Duke brother.

But the big news is that Desiree says her feelings are "breaking into a run" for Brooks, which is one of their made-up stages between like and love -- but Brooks says in a talking-head that he's not there yet. Hmmm.

Fireworks! And a fireworks metaphor, everybody drink!

Chris' Date

Desiree looks especially sparkly fresh in a striped dress-jumper thing as they head out on a yacht. Oooh, fancy. They strip to their swimsuits and slather each other up with sunscreen, then make out. Rowr. If he makes it to the overnights, he might be getting lucky.

On an island, they picnic and talk about their selves that they are with their friends. Chris is cute for sure, but we don't get a huge spark between these two. They seem more like buddies.

Chris then wants to write a poem and put it in a bottle that they throw in to the ocean. Oh, dear. Luckily, Desiree has figured out poetry doesn't have to rhyme -- nope, spoke too soon. Heh.

Also, Chris gives a talking head where he says, "I'm up here" and puts his hand above his head. You know the first take he was like, "I'm on Cloud 9" and the producers were like, "Nope. Try again."

He then tosses the bottle into the ocean and it's ... terrible. Terrible toss. Maybe we'll say that was because of the rocks that he threw the bottle like a skee-ball? (A skee-ball that got no points, no less).

*kitty!*

Tonight is apparently the night Chris is going to go all the way with Desiree. No, sorry -- tell her that he loves her. But first, let's talk about how many kids they want. Desiree wants three or four and so does Chris, except he weirdly says that it's great for siblings to have each other and "not necessarily have to have other friends."

Hmmm. Red flag! Red flag!

He also says she'll meet all five of his family members on his hometown date and it really matters to him what they think, so no pressure.

Speaking of pressure, Chris starts freaking out about telling Desiree that he loves her. He's sweating and fidgeting and getting all wacky. But he finally whips out (no, not that) a poem called "Individually Defined."

As the plinky-plunky strains of an ASPCA commercial play, Chris reads his poem and ends with "I love you" and Desiree grabs him for some smooching. That was seriously a baller move, we must say.

Then in a talking-head, Chris basically says that he likes it and is ready to put a ring on it. Wow. Are we in for some heartbreak? Are they setting him up for a big fall? Yikes.

But our money is still on Michael to go home.

Michael's Date

Speaking of Michael, he gets the take-in-the-culture date, which means they are going to wander amongst street vendors and the many, many cats that apparently inhabit Madeira.

Michael says, "Coming right on the heels of hometown dates." Um, no, genius prosecutor guy. This is on the heels of the James debacle. Hometown will be on the heels of THIS.

They drink wine next to a ridiculously beautiful lake in the middle of a park and they kind of blather on about stuff. There is no spark here. None. Zero. No matter what Michael's nasally little voice would have us believe.

Then they make some locals push them down a hill in cart. There is a metaphor about being out of control. Not only is that another silly date metaphor (drink!), but it's not even accurate because the presence of the locals means they are not out of control. Now, if the locals jumped off and waved as Desiree and Michael careened down the hill -- that would be out of control (and hilarious).

That night, I'm not digging Michael's James Crockett v-neck under the suit jacket look. And honestly, does it not seem like every time he talks, Desiree is doing long division in her head so as to look interested in what he's saying?

Bio dad blah blah diabetes blah blah forgiveness blah blah. You have to bust out a better sob story than that nowadays.

He then pays Desiree all these compliments and she conspicuously does not return them. Then they come across one of the island's many cats, but this one sings and is accompanied by some old men with guitars.

Desiree and Michael try hard not to look horrified, then they make out a little.

The Two-on-One Date

Drew and Zakkkk are on the two-on-one, though there's not as much pressure because no one goes home from it. There is a rose to be had, but the non-recipient stays for the Rose Ceremony.

Anyway, the first part of the date is totally awesome. They are racing go-karts on a spectacular race track. Terrific. Dez then says, "Why don't you two go at it? Then I'm not getting in the way" and the date takes a weird turn.

Haha, no. It's just a race between the two guys, which Zakkkk easily wins. Drew is eating his dust. Unfortunately, Zakkk doesn't win anything. That should've been one of those date activities where the loser goes back to the mansion.

Drew says in a talking-head that he's going to tell Dez he loves her, while Zakkkk has already said that he's known "for weeks" that he loves Dez. Um, slow your roll, Zakkkkkk -- this show has only been filming for like two weeks.

Desiree then says that this rose is "going to be hard to think about" because she has two great guys. We'll assume she means "hard to decide who to give to."

Zakkkkk takes his alone time as Drew has to sit on some pillows all alone in the infield of the track. Heh. But anyway, Zakkkkk has made Desiree some drawings of "all these weeks" that he has been in love with her.

Highlights include shirtlessness and some rocks, though the idea is very sweet and his drawings aren't bad at all. But he chickens out on saying "I love you" because he respects Drew too much? Hmm.

During his alone time, Drew talks about his severely handicapped sister, both conveying how much he loves her and also preparing Desiree for what it will be like when she meets her. It's very deftly handled and you can tell Drew is such a great guy.

He also is not as shy about the "I love you" as Zakkkkk was. He tells Dez he has fallen in love with her and they smooch it out. And Drew gets the rose, not a huge shock.

I Need to Talk to Chris Harrison


Love, love, love Desiree's electric blue dress with the drapey back. Desiree seems to indicate that she's leaning heavily towards Brooks, but she also admits to falling for Chris (Chris the contestant, not Harrison, though that would've been AMAZING).  "I am falling for someone ... it's you. I love you, Chris Harrison."

Also, we all know Michael's toast, right?

Rose Ceremony


The roses go to Drew (already had) and Brooks, Chris and .... Zakkk. Yep. We didn't even need to have this episode!

Michael takes it like a champ, though he sheds a few tears in the limo for his mama, who is now denied the pleasure of meeting Desiree. Wait, then he calls his mom to break the news immediately. Huh.

Next week: Somebody's family sings to her! Oh lordy. Is that Zakkkk's family? The Zakkkk Attakkkk, if you will. Wow. That might rival the dove funeral and taxidermist dad.

And the return of Desiree's punk brother. Yippee.
Photo/Video credit: ABC