Episode 9

Andy, my fiancé (a word I'm still not used to): "It's hard for me to imagine that many fantasies are actually played out in the Fantasy Suite. It should just be called the Suite." (He has a point)

KAITLYN'S ONE-ON-ONE

Chris and Kaitlyn enter a local temple where Chris' is once again challenged to keep his eyes shut. (See Episode 5

I LOVED all the monkeys! How cute were they?! They had so much personality...

It wouldn't be a Bachelor episode without a flimsy metaphor. Kaitlyn bore the brunt this week, saying she wished she could be a like monkey since "they see what they want and go after it". Right.

At "dinner", Chris mentions Kaitlyn's guard having been up. Of course, we know now that Kaitlyn ends up going home, so I always find it interesting when a contestant's guard/walls/lack of vulnerability are brought up. You would think, if the Bachelor/ette isn't completely sold on someone (which evidently Chris wasn't with Kaitlyn), he would, out of respect, gladly let those walls remain a fortress. 

I'm not accusing Chris of being cavalier with Kaitlyn's feelings since I do believe letting her go was a REALLY tough choice on his part and he probably wasn't sure of that decision yet during their date. I just had to voice that observation since it always seems to happen to a Final 3 or 4 contestant who ends up going home that very episode.

Kaitlyn is such a breath of fresh air on this show. Yes, she developed real feelings for Chris (don't they all?), but she has a wryness to her and an awareness of what's silly and what isn't. She was openly amused while reading the Fantasy Suite card and shamelessly cracked up upon seeing this...

... and isn't that how we would all react? 

 this show will never not be funny to me.

this show will never not be funny to me.

WHITNEY'S ONE-ON-ONE

I was super into the ship Whitey and Chris spent their day aboard. So cool:

 Note the cameramen.

Note the cameramen.

I thought Whitney's frustrations with her sister's "lack" of approval were a bit misplaced. Is there a single person who didn't think her sister was totally in the right last week? I suppose it was a sour note for Whitney in an otherwise perfect hometown. I still dig her sister's mindset, though.

It always amazes me when a contestant, when there are still two others playing, has enough faith in their relationship to say...

... but Whitney keeps her wits about her and never seems swept up by it all, so I actually kind of believe her.

In the evening, the topic du jour: Is Whitney willing to give up a rewarding career, which she genuinely enjoys and has worked hard for, to move to Arlington where it's safe to say there are few possibilities in her field? I like that Chris says in an ITM, "Part of me thinks it's absolutely crazy for Whitney to even consider giving up what she's doing now to move to Arlington. It's a huge sacrifice." He also says of Arlington, "It is probably my biggest insecurity in a relationship" and then quite plainly lays out the lifestyle; if you want to do just about anything, you drive. Otherwise you hang out at home. He fully gets the gravity of what he's asking of these women.

Whitney responds, "I firmly, firmly believe that life takes you places. And it's not where you are, it's who you're with." Perfect answer.

Not that this matters, but Whitney's Fantasy Suite a distinct step up from Kaitlyn's. Compare the aforementioned candle-laden, flower petal-stuffed tub with:

The drape-shutting always makes me laugh and this in particular cracked me up:

 So thorough.

So thorough.

 

BECCA'S ONE-ON-ONE

My entire Flare recap was basically a rant on this date, so I won't delve too deep. But what bothers me about all the emphasis on Becca's virginity is it totally detracts from the relationship between her and Chris which, for this far along, isn't a good thing. When there are still several women, fine, but not when we're at Final 3. Case in point, I don't really recall much from this date at all, except that they were told to "make love" by locals..

That's a real shame, particularly when they had a particularly cool date of strolling through Sidemen, Bali's rural farmlands:

That's not to say there was no substance between Becca and Chris. I just mean, all I really remember is the overriding "WILL SHE OR WON'T SHE?" tone of it all.

In the evening, Chris says, "Knowing that Becca's never been in love before, it does raise some concerns as to whether or not she'll ever be able to get to that point with me." I don't really agree with that. I personally don't think the fact that someone hasn't been in love before means they're incapable or even reticent to get to that place in the future. Yes, Becca's probably more cautious than most. But I'm a big believer in timing, and in her case, it probably just hasn't aligned for her yet. Also, since she is clearly looking for her "forever" (meaning, she's not interested in dating for the sake of dating), she is probably waiting for that "you just know" feeling and is dismissive of anything that doesn't strike her as such.

Chris can be quite funny:

ROSE CEREMONY

I felt slightly bad making a .gif of this, but Chris' sniffly man-crying was so precious I just couldn't resist:

Is it just me or was it not totally clear what the drama was with Becca? I get that they had some conversation either during or after the Fantasy Suite (so, off-camera) and that it maybe involved her being hesitant about moving to Arlington. But, isn't she allowed to feel that way? There are still three women and we're talking a complete uprooting of her life and career. 

That aside, how can he pick anyone but Whitney in the end? He mentions more than once that there's one rose he is sure about (Whitney), and waffles between the other two. And frankly, that assuredness is how it should be. Speaking of which, I predict the last lady standing here.

KAITLYN'S DEPARTURE

This was one of the hardest-to-watch departures I can recall ever seeing on this show. Watching Kaitlyn try her hardest not to cry while rapidly processing what just happened was heartbreaking:

The silver lining is Kaitlyn now can and should be the next Bachelorette!!! She's beautiful, sharp, funny, and the perfect mix of crass yet feminine. She's sentimental when it counts but not just generally sentimental (as many women on this show tend to appear). Best of all, she's indisputably authentic. She would challenge the men and keep them on their toes. She's the opposite of goody-goody and would bring it in the ITM commentaries. I envision a similar season to Jillian Harris', which we all know was one of the best. Let's make it happen, guys. #KAITLYNFORBACHELORETTE

BEST DRESSED

The three remaining women are all very well-dressed, and they all brought it for their one-on-one dinners...

I dug Whitney's vibrant yellow maxi. It always amazes me how good yellow looks on blondes. It doesn't seem like it should work but it almost always does. She looks like Little Miss Sunshine and I love it.

My runner up was Kaitlyn with her maxi:

The bold print is striking and the open back adds a hint of sex appeal. She looks beachy and feminine. Love.

My Best Dressed this week was Becca in her unique two-tier pleated number:

Not only am I impressed at how well she pulls off this mango-y color, I'm further impressed she picked it out in the first place. This is totally the sort of color I would pass right over. (Anything remotely orange tends to make me look sickly) But she looks gorgeous, leggy, and tan. And those WEDGES. (Which, for the record, are Target!)

WORST DRESSED

Like I said, these three ladies know how to dress. I didn't actively dislike anything this week!

 

Until next week, fellow pandas!