renee son ben juan pablo the bachelor 'The Bachelor': Andi and Clare's hometown dates are a little roughAfter a lengthy preview of all the drama that we can look forward to on this week’s special two-night event, “Bachelor” fans, we dive right into the hometown dates.

Nikki’s Date

Nikki is from Kansas City, which has the word “city” right in the title, yet the first shot is of cows, like farm animals are just wandering the streets in KC. She’s not from a place with one stoplight, editors. Stop that.

We get our first “literally” of the night when Nikki says she’s literally been around the world. Sorry, that is a misuse of that word. Everybody drink!

The cows are then explained when Nikki takes Juan Pablo to one of the best BBQ places in Kansas City, which … just seems mean, but we guess the cows aren’t watching, so. Juan Pablo pigs out and rightly so. KC BBQ 4EVA.

More cows, only the fake kind. JP has to ride a mechanical bull, which we can tell you all is a lot of fun. If you ever get the chance, do it. JP is not bad at it, probably he has a lot of hip-swivel prowess because of the Latin dancing he does. Though Nikki calls it “hot” when he’s on the bull and … we wouldn’t go that far. If that was supposed to be indicative of his bedroom style, we would say she’s in for a lot of flailing and lunging about.

Nikki’s also sad because she wants to tell Juan Pablo she loves him but she just can’t. Maybe it’s because you’ve known him like four weeks at this point? Don’t spazz out, Nik.

The family includes Nikki’s parents Tom and Jennifer and two younger brothers Eric and Alex, plus Alex’s wife Kayla. They have a dining room that I am drooling over — look at that table, y’all. Anyway, the family seems very open and welcoming. Jennifer asks Nikki privately if she’s in love with JP and Nikki says she is. Jennifer says she’ll support Nikki in whatever she does, as long as she’s happy. That’s a great mom right there.

Meanwhile, JP sits down with Tom, who wonders what JP sees in Nikki. Juan Pablo says he loves her honesty and that their relationship just feels easy. Tom cautions him that if his heart isn’t there, don’t propose to Nikki — but the family trusts her to make her own decision and would welcome him and Camila wholeheartedly into their family if that’s how it ends up with Nikki and Juan Pablo. That’s a very honest answer.

andi juan pablo the bachelor hometown 'The Bachelor': Andi and Clare's hometown dates are a little roughAndi’s Date

We’re in Atlanta for Andi’s hometown date. They head to the shooting range and we all have to drink again because Andi says Juan Pablo is “literally” ecstatic about it. Think about what that means. Ew. And also, no, he’s not.

Andi says she can’t take JP home to meet her family until he hits a bullseye, which he eventually does. Do we call shenanigans on that? He was not even hitting the target and then magically he hits it dead-center? Hmmm.

After the gun show, Andi expresses some honest fear about how this is going to go with her family. They must not have been overly-excited about her going on the show because she seems to have a sense it’s going to go poorly (and it does).

Andi’s dad Hy is particularly prickly, grilling Juan Pablo about how his daughter hadn’t had a one-on-one date until it was down to five girls. Andi doesn’t help things when she says when she finally got a one-on-one, her parents can’t watch that episode. Ugh, don’t just say that right in front of the guy you’re talking about.

Dinner continues to be a big ball of awkward, then it doesn’t get any better when Andi’s mom Patty wants to see Juan Pablo dance. He makes Andi dance with him and it’s so, so awful. She is a terrible dancer, but thankfully, Patty steps in and seems to be enjoying herself.

Of course, then Hy comes back into the picture to make it all awkward again. We mean, it’s understandable to be skeptical about “The Bachelor/ette,” but there’s a difference between being skeptical and leaving all social niceties aside. Hy actually says, “I don’t know him well enough to wish him any ill will.” Ha! Also, oh my god, dude.

Hy then won’t give JP his blessing because Andi isn’t the only one left. He says that when JP can say Andi is the only one, JP can come back and ask. Meanwhile, Andi tells her sister that she’s not “quite there” yet but she thinks she could be. Rachel pipes up that she doesn’t really think JP is the one for Andi and later, her dad says he just doesn’t want Andi to get hurt. He’s also concerned with things moving too fast.

Yeah, we’re OK with those points. Andi and JP don’t really strike us as the match made in “Bachelor” heaven. At the end of the date, she says she’s “very, very close” to being in love with Juan Pablo. Hmm.

Renee’s Date

Sarasota, FL is where Renee’s date is taking place. We’re so excited about Renee because she’s the best person left, right up until she says, “It’s been two months since I’ve seen my son. I’m going to literally eat my son when I see him.” DRINK.

Also, did they send her back to Sarasota and NOT let her see her son until just now? That can’t be right, that’s super weird. Surely she’s seen Ben since she’s been in town. Or are these out of order and maybe they flew right back from New Zealand to this date? Hmm. Seems fishy.

Anyway, she cries when she sees Ben, it’s nice. They watch his little league game, it’s nothing really noteworthy. That night, JP meets Renee’s parents and brother. While Renee tucks Ben in, JP talks to first the brother and then the mom about how great Renee is. It’s terrific, but it’s really the problem that we’ve felt with them all along — there’s no spark. These two should have playdates with their kids, but there’s no big romance brewing. Renee is totally going home tonight and we knew that before the episode even started.

Case in point: We only wrote three paragraphs about this date. Now look at how much we wrote about the other ones. It even got less screen time, we’re pretty sure. Sorry, Renee.

clare juan pablo the bachelor hometown 'The Bachelor': Andi and Clare's hometown dates are a little roughClare’s Date

The last stop is Sacramento, Calif., which is where Crazy Eyes calls home. As they walk through a rose garden, Juan Pablo says, “I can’t wait to see why you are the way you are,” which he means in a nice way but still — ha! It sounds like quite the back-handed compliment.

Anyway, Clare shares about her dad, including telling JP how they did her father-daughter dance before he died. She picked out the song she wanted to dance to at her wedding and they danced and  … geez, show. Juan Pablo is tearing up and so are we. Stupid Crazy Eyes, making us cry.

Why was the hair-cutting scene (ahem) cut? There are pictures on ABC, as evidenced above. What was that about?

Anyway, speaking of crying, it’s kind of sad to see how excited Clare is to have Juan Pablo meet her family and we know how much they are going to crush her dreams — based on the previews, anyway. It could be an editors’ trick.

Clare tells her sister Madeline that she’s ready to marry Juan Pablo and her sister asks, “How long have you known him?”, which is valid. But Cl
are’s counter is that their parents got engaged after three weeks, which is a pretty big trump card since it’s all so emotional regarding Clare’s dad.

JP assures two other sisters that he’s falling for her, but then sister Lara and Clare’s mom say they can’t give their blessing yet. Clare says she doesn’t care, she’s following her heart, but then Lara kind of wigs out about Clare manipulating “mama” and how disrespectful Clare is being. It’s very weird, it’s totally unclear what Lara is unhappy about.

It really crushes Clare’s spirit and while we do think she’s a little bonkers, it’s really unkind on the part of her sister. What is that about? Is the thing with Lara a jealous-sister situation? Hmph.

Lara finally buzzes off so that Juan Pablo can talk to Clare’s mom alone — wow, Clare looks like her mom. If that’s any indication of how she’s going to age, jackpot. That woman is gorgeous. And now that mom can get a word in edgewise, she gives Juan Pablo her blessing about being welcome into their family.

Does it seem like JP will choose Clare? It really does to us. It seems like we’re headed for a Nikki/Clare finale, which is kind of awesome — “Did you pay for it? Did you pay for it?” Hahaha.

Rose Ceremony

The roses go to Nikki, Clare and … Andi. Yeah, not even a little suspense there since we already know via previews that Andi has an issue with the fantasy suite. Not that there was suspense anyway.

Sorry to see you go, Renee. You’re easily the best woman left out of the four. However, we’re also not really rooting for you to be the “Bachelorette” because you’re … kind of boring. Sorry.

Tomorrow night: Horses, waterfalls, yachts, drums, beaches, mountains, loving, kissing, kissing, kissing, “I love you,” drama, tears, tears, tears and some hurt feelings. We’ll confess to being uber-curious about what is about to go down on this show tomorrow night, y’all.

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."