Love Lessons from ‘The Bachelorette’: Love and Real Estate Are All About Location

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We start off the episode with even more recapping of Why Bentley Sucks, the new Bachelorette spinoff. If I have to watch him and Ashley say “dot dot dot” one more time, I might put my arm through the television. Which would be stupid, since I watch this show on the computer. The show would only be fifteen minutes long if they cut out all the segments that recap things that just happened, but I guess they'd make a lot less money from ad sales that way. This week, we're off to Chang Mai, Thailand.

Love, like real estate, is all about location.

One of the guys voiceovers that they're following Ashley around the world for love, which is a cute idea until you remember this is a manufactured drama planned and plotted by producers, and that these dudes aren't “following” so much as “doing what they got paid to do.” Some person named Lucas says that Chang Mai is the perfect place to find love. Crushable's own secret TV boyfriend JP says that his best moments with Ashley have been one-on-one. (Um, yeah, duh?) “If you can't find love in this type of environment, you're hopeless,” says JP, and considering the rules of logic on this show he kind of has a point. Ashley also voiceovers that Chang Mai is the perfect place to find love. Chris Harrison points out that there are eleven dudes left, and that there are three dates coming up: a one on one, a two on one, and a group date. I'm sorry, but it sound a little porny when Chris words it that way. The recipient of the one-on-one date is Ben F, and I really enjoyed him last week so I'm glad to see more of him. He announces there's a 100 percent chance Ashley will get a kiss on the date, which is cute.

You can't kiss in your head.

Ben F. and Ashley leave for their date hand-in-hand, and several of the dudes have jealous faces. Ames voiceovers that Ben F (which he pronounces sort of like “Beneff,” and which I am stealing) that it's hard to see Beneff and Ashley together since they have chemistry. He says that it's getting hard as they get further along in the process, which he pronounces “pro-sess.” Wait, is Ames Canadian? The only people I know who pronounce it that way are Canadian.

Beneff and Ashley go to an open-air market. Ashley voiceovers that she wants the guys to enjoy their trips, but she wants to ‘balance' it with ‘real life.' I guess her definition of real life is ‘shopping,' because she drags him to a couple of kiosks that are selling dresses, and when she coos over one he offers to buy it for her. It could have come across like a suckup move, but Beneff seems very relaxed and normal. He voiceovers that Thailand is incredible and that he feels like he's on vacation with his girlfriend. I kind of have a crush on him. Next, they make small versions of the giant paper umbrellas outside. That actually seems like a kind of cool art project, and I'm about as coordinated as a sloth. Then they go to a big Buddhist temple. I don't know if they spent five minutes doing things for the cameras or if this date lasted like eight hours, but I'm enjoying the Thailand travel porn in the meantime. Beneff tries to plant one on Ashley but she tells him they're not allowed to kiss at the temple because it's a holy place. Undaunted, Beneff suggests a “mental kiss,” and he goes down a point. Ashley says she just wants to pounce on Beneff and that there's a lot of sexual tension, and I'm like “Get a room.” They do, but the cameras are still there.

You must talk about “taking down walls” or you are not really opening up emotionally.

They change clothes and reappear at a really pretty outdoor dinner table. They have some wine, and Ashley uses this as an opportunity to ask Beneff about his winemaking business. I forgot that that was his job! Yeah, I'd date him. He explains the winemaking schedule to her. Somehow he segues into talking about his emotional and relationship history, because there's an overlap between people who watch The Bachelorette and people who have seen Sideways. Beneff's dad died a few years ago, and he says that it helped him mature and grow as a person and find out what kind of person he wanted to be. Beneff talks a lot about tearing down his walls (drink!) and how he wants to be with a woman who's into casual stuff, hanging out and entertaining at home, and being a good son and brother. “For the first time in a long time I feel really hopeful,” Ashley says, because the Bentley thing happened like twenty minutes ago and she has had time to live four lives by then. She then offers Beneff a rose, and a bunch of Thai women come out to do some kind of ceremonial dance. And then they finally, finally kiss.

Back at the house, the group date card arrives. William is good enough at math to realize that anyone not listed on the group date card will have to go on the deathmatch two-on-one date. The people going on the group date are Ames, Constantine, Nick, Blake, Lucas, Ryan, JP, and Mickey. That leaves Ben C (Bencee!) and our friend William for the doubleheader.

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