'The Bachelorette': Is Ben the Tierra of this season?

ben-desiree-the-bachelorette.jpgNow that we've weeded out the real weirdos, let's get down to business on "The Bachelorette," shall we? If you've always been wondering why reality shows don't do more rap music videos, well, you're in luck tonight -- this show has the answer.

Brooks' Date

Kix gets the first date (Kix Brooks, get it?). He's the guy I think looks like Kevin on "Shameless" (pictured here). Right? It's uncanny. Anyway, their first stop is at Desiree's bridal boutique (where she works, not that she owns). And they leave in their wedding finery.

brooks-kevin.jpgDesiree likes how Kix is having fun with it, but what else is he going to do? Throw a big fit? I maintain this is a weird start to the date, especially with all those extras they paid to freak out at the cupcake truck.

Then they head up to the Hollywood sign, where they get to have a picnic amidst the clouds and by "clouds" Kix clearly means the left-a-grimey-film-on-all-my-stuff-when-I-lived-in-Los-Angeles smog. Blech. They're lucky they don't have black lung by the time they're done.

As they picnic, Kix talks about how he's only had one big, serious relationship that he got out of not that long ago. But he's open to taking the chance again and again. It's not some big sob story or anything, sounds pretty normal.

That night, there's a lame gag where Dez drives them down a "closed" road and Kix says he's all nervous. Um, please. We were not born on the turnip truck yesterday. And also, didn't they use this schtick on "Bachelor Pad' last summer?

As they eat, Dez recounts how happy her parents' marriage is and how that means she won't settle. Conversely, Kix's parents are divorced and during his teen years he was estranged from his father, but they're working on their relationship still. He gets very emotional and it seems pretty genuine, which is cool. That's a big place to go on the first date.

Naturally, he gets the rose. And they smooch. Then get a private concert from some Andy guy. It hardly matters. They dance in the street. But hey, at least they aren't on some platform in the midst of a crowd of people pretending to be excited, because that's always really weird.

Group Date


The fellas who get the group date are Dan, Juan Pablo, Kasey (#whooppie), Zack, Will, Brian, Drew, James, Mikey, Zakkkkk, Nick, Michael, Brandon and Ben. The date card says, "Who's here for the right reasons?" Dun dun dun.

So, it's the rap video with Soulja Boy we've been seeing for weeks. It is ... pretty much as awful as we thought a bunch of bachelors on this show would be doing a rap video, but Desiree likes guys who can laugh at themselves and so forth. Hmm.

Kasey says they had no idea this was coming -- #oopspowsurprise. The guys have to "audition" with some impromptu rapping, which features some bad rhymes and Mikey shimmying his pecs. Brandon, Michael G., Ben and James are chosen as the soloists and the rest of the guys are backup dancers.

This "Here for the Right Reasons" thing is getting some guys' hackles raised in regards to Ben (who seemed so genuine with his kid last week) about how he's a bad dude, so they decide to heckle him while he does his solo as Wes -- until they realize that Dez might see them as total tools for doing that and they stop.

They all get costumes and apparently Brandon's costume involves no pants and him jiggling his manparts at Desiree -- is that something Kasey Kahl did? We do not remember that. At least he's not in prison, though, right? But Brandon really struggles with it and gets hearty boos.

That night, the guys take various one-on-one time. Zakkkk gives Dez an antique journal that has never been written in. The inscription doesn't it make that look old, atually, but it's a nice thought.

Meanwhile, everyone stares at the rose and Brandon says he's going to regard the love of Desiree as a butterfly -- don't squash it. Heh.

Then Ben steals Dez away from Mikey and thus begins the "I hate Ben" club from the guys. They really don't like him and nobody really knows why -- it's just a feeling. Hmm. We aren't getting that feeling yet, but I'm definitely intrigued since it's probably not all in the guys' heads.

Someone else who isn't getting that feeling is Desiree, because she's totally smitten with Ben and they make out. He seems great, for sure. But the guys are just not happy about Ben.

When it gets more into the Ben stuff, Mikey says he just doesn't seem genuine and the other guys agree. So Mikey decides to talk to Ben about it, which is a bold move. Mikey tells Ben he's like a politician -- he's only nice when he has to be.

Ben says he's not a backstabber, he's not a trash-talker, and they bond over their shoes. But in a talking head, Ben says he's here for Dez and he doesn't care about the other guys. On the one hand, that's fine because it's not "The Bachelor Frat House" show, but on the other hand -- you spend a lot of time with these people and you can't be a Tierra.

Later, Brandon takes his alone time and talks about how his dad left when he was 5 years old and he hasn't seen him since and his mom was a drug addict, so Brandon raised his siblings when his mother would go off for a week at a time. Geez. But he can't wait to be a dad, which is so wonderful. He seems like an outstanding guy, even if he's not the one for Dez (which isn't a spark I necessarily see).

However, Ben gets the rose and the guys are look pretty sour about it.

Bryden's Date


They road trip to the beach, taking flip cam video and romping in the surf with a kite, then eat at a seafood restaurant. Next stop is an orange grove for a picnic and Bryden doesn't know what brie is, which is kind of adorable. Then they end up in Ojai, which I've heard is a beautiful town in wine country.

That night, they eat dinner and Bryden talks about a pretty bad car accident he was in in college and how he used to use the military as his scapegoat for not getting close to people. It's quite the serious discussion, so if that's what you're looking for, Desiree's 2 for 2 on these solo dates.

He gets "her" rose," which is a weird way to phrase it. Dirty.

Then in the hot tub, Bryden is adorably nervous about kissing Desiree -- you can tell he wants to, but he's not sure about it. So she finally says, "Just kiss me already" and then he does. Heh.

Cocktail Party

Desiree shows up in this beautiful green dress with some fancier hair and makeup than she usually wears -- she really is a looker, but not in that plastic way like Emily.

Then we dive right into the serious stuff with Michael G., who whips out his Type I diabetes. OK, that's fine and all, but -- it's like, do you get the feeling they all just wrack their brains for what serious thing they can bring up to make them more sympathetic?

My dad left, my parents are divorced, diabetes, etc etc. It's like -- when do we get a guy who sits down all serious and is like, "So ... I have in-grown toenails. It's a pretty serious problem."

Anyway, Ben swoops in during "As the Diabetes Turns" and takes Desiree away from the other guys. It, of course, rubs the guys the wrong way and they all gather 'round so Michael can regale them with the tale of how Eviiiiiiiil Ben stole Michael's damsel away just as he was telling her about his critical illness! Get the torches and pitchforks! Storm the castle! Rawrrrrr!

Not that diabetes is a joke, but ... c'mon, guys. You know what I'm talking here. This is really silly.

Ben comes back and the guys jump on him about being so rude, which -- that's the name of the game, fellas. He was probably being poked off-screen by a production assistant with an electric cattle prod to go interrupt.

So then Mikey keeps making a federal case out of Ben swooping in to take time with Dez and so he, Michael G. and Nick M. take Ben aside to tell him to stop rubbing guys the wrong way. As they insist that Ben behave differently, Michael actually says, "I'm not going to step out and tell you how to act ... I honestly don't care whether or not you make friends with us."

Uh, then shut up about it, dude. Stop being a whiny baby. Michael G. then says, "He thinks he's so mature," which is how I like my irony, folks, and then has the gall to say Ben is setting a bad example for his son because he's lying about how he swooped in and stole Desiree away.

Oh, please. Shut up, Michael. #TeamBen.

Then a bunch of the guys stand around all "pick a little, talk a little, pick a little, talk a little, cheep cheep cheep, talk a lot, pick a little more" about Ben's businesses and his sons and blah blah BLAH.

Just get over it, guys. Are you jealous? Are you jealous because Dez likes him a lot and he's good-looking? Because you are being the biggest bunch of whiners. Just ignore him and handle your business.

Now, Ben may turn out to be a total snake. The way this show works, he probably will. But so far, he seems fine and the other guys seem like punks who can't handle a little healthy competition.

Rose Ceremony

Bryden, Kix and Ben already have roses. The remaining 13 go to James, Kasey (#relieved) , Dan, Juan Pablo, Brad, Chris, Brian, Zakkkkk, Drew, Mikey, Zack, Michael and Brandon, which leaves Nick M., Robert and Will going home.

No big surprises on Robert and Will, they've been kind of non-entities so far, but Nick M. is cute and has been shown at least somewhat. But nobody I'm crying in my pillow over losing.

Next week
: A couple adventure dates, including some dressing up like a Western, plus Brandon being intense and the guys being jealous about Ben seemingly sneaking off to see Dez on the sly, then some girl shows up the show hired to play someone's girlfriend who is just livid that her man isn't on some solo journey of self-discovery. Dra-ma!
Photo/Video credit: ABC