“The Bachelor” finale is upon us. Who did Brad Womack choose, Emily Maynard or Chantal O’Brien?
After the family meet-and-greet, two final dates and a supremely awkward conversation about being a father, Brad finally proposed to Emily Maynard and she said yes. Chantal was heartbroken.
But let’s see how we got there.
The part of the show that is not a video recap or a coming up montage sees Brad gazing thoughtfully off his balcony out at the beautiful Cape Town seascape. His family arrives and it’s his mom Pamela, twin brother Chad (hellooooo Chad), younger brother Wes and sisters-in-law Dylan and Prima . Brad is really overwhelmed with emotion, it’s quite adorable. He also assures his family that he’s definitely proposing.
Chantal’s Family Date
Chantal’s outgoing vibrant personality goes over big with the brothers. She tells them she initially had doubts about Brad both choosing or not choosing, but now she’s all in and she would get married on the spot. Pamela grills Chantal a bit about falling in love so quickly and Chantal talks about finding out who she is after her first failed marriage. The whole family seems completely smitten with Chantal.
When she leaves, they seem so wonderful and in love and he talking-heads that she is extraordinary, the family loved her and that he “will marry her” if “everything works out.” Hmmm. What does that mean? What would NOT work out? And if she’s not the girl you want, that’s a weird thing to say.
Emily’s Family Date
Emily looks like a little island Barbie doll. The brothers notice how much more reserved Emily is as compared to Chantal and they are concerned about the fact that she has a kid and brother Wes asks if Ricky’s father would be OK with them moving to Austin, TX. So Emily has to tell the whole story and everybody is in tears.
Wes and Chad take the time to say to Brad that being a father is hard and this is an instant family. He can’t not be ready to take it on. Brad assures them that he gets the warmest feeling from it and that he’s very taken with Ricky.
Pamela is dumbstruck (in a good way) by Emily calling Brad “her angel” and hopes for the best for Emily because her life has been so hard. As she leaves, Brad is hoping his family can give him good advice. Does he not know yet who he is going to choose?
Chantal vs. Emily
The family sees it as “fun loving” on one hand and a “rooted-down family” on the other, which is kind of true, but it’s not like Chantal is just some crazy party girl. I think Brad could really build a family with Chantal, but the family thinks she’s to free-wheeling. The sisters-in-law think Emily is already fitting right in with them, since they are already moms and Chantal is the girl they’d call to go out drinking.
Pamela says he can’t keep his hands off Emily and that she’s the whole package – Pamela has cast her vote, as have the rest of the family. It’s interesting because I find Emily a little boring compared to Chantal and I see more chemistry between Chantal and Brad than between him and Emily. Guess we’ll see.
Chantal’s Romantic Date
Swimming with sharks. And not little nurse sharks, these are great big honking maneater Great Whites. And while a fear of sharks is basically silly because they don’t hunt humans and they’re endangered and blahblah, that would still be scary. “I got no spit.”
“You go inside the cage? Cage goes in the water, you go in the water. Shark’s in the water. Our shark …. Farewell and adieu to you fair Spanish ladies. Farewell and adieu to you ladies of Spain. For we’ve received orders for to sail back to Boston. And so nevermore shall we see you again.”
Ahem. Sorry. That night, Chantal gives him a map with all the places they’ve been marked on it with a little narrative to go along. She talking-heads that she “basically traveled the world for him.” Uh, it’s not like you paid for it, chica.
She also has a wonderful letter for him expressing all her feelings. They part for the night and Brad just seems … like he knows he’s not going to pick her? And I type that not knowing the outcome, but it seems like that, right?
Emily’s Romantic Date
After a helicopter ride and a hike up a lot of steps, they have a cliff-side picnic and he can’t stop telling her how much his family loved her, which she thinks it’s great. But then she brings up being a dad again. She’s not sure if he has fully realized what that means.
That night, he says that ever since he met Ricky, he’s wanted the chance to be an actual father to her. Not a replacement to Ricky her dad, but more than a stepfather. So she asks what that means to him, what his role would be.
He says it means unconditional love, a provider, a protector, a friend when it’s appropriate and a disciplinarian when that is called for – good answer, Brad. But he’s very uncomfortable having been put on the spot like that. Emily just keeps repeating, “It’s not always fun.” Uh, we get it, mom! We get that kids are hard. Sometimes I worry Emily isn’t the brightest bulb on the bush.
Brad is getting upset about her repeated grilling of him, which probably has a lot to do with the fact that she’s acting like he wouldn’t be there for Ricky in the emergency room if she fell and hurt herself. Uh, I don’t even know Brad in real life and I feel I can say with certainty that he would care if Ricky got hurt. I mean – good lord.
So Brad kind of turns the tables because this is making him worry that she’s not ready to let him into their lives – that is completely fair, she’s being a little nutty at this point. So he says he’s ready and he hopes she’s ready.
Emily is worried her head screwed it up and Brad is defeated at the rejection with which his declaration was met. Yeah, that was epically bad.
Also – Chantal who?
You know what, guys? You know what Brad needs. He needs to talk to Chris Harrison.
There are misty water-colored memories of the season so far and lots of faraway looks over various bodies of water. Bleep bleep bleep.
The ring guy shows up and – OK, obviously those diamonds are beautiful, but the diamond-crusted band? Too much. Brad picks a big one, but there aren’t any small ones. All the rings are big and sparkly.
The voiceover by Brad as he waits and the women ride in their limos makes it sound like Emily is the one. And what, no Chris Harrison time?! Stunning.
Chantal is first. Bummer. She walks up and she seems to know she’s getting the “It’s not you” speech. He says he has “stronger feelings for someone else,” like she doesn’t know that’s Emily? Don’t be a turd.
She starts crying and he says a bunch of nice things, but she doesn’t really care that much. Just once, I’d really like the rejected girl to just lose her mind and like scream at the Bachelor, “I slept with you!” Hee.
She says on the way out that she wants someone who is just as crazy about her as she is about them and she’s sorry it isn’t Brad. Very nicely done, all around. Very adult. Though one of these years – I demand screaming and fit-throwing.
In the limo, she cries and looks beautiful and says she feels so stupid because she thought for sure it was her. She has such a pretty cry-face, I’m jealous. Mine is awful.
Emily pulls up and Brad starts grinning like a fool. He gives a nice speech about how she’s the one and he loves her and she says it back, then he proposes, she says yes
, they kiss and the music swells.
Awww. So who’s happy? And who’s disappointed? Don’t forget about “After the Final Rose” – are they still together?