The Bachelorette Finale began last night with a clip of Kaitlyn saying "I'm in love with two guys."
On one hand, she had Nick Viall, a late comer to the show, a bit of a teen-talking player who was having a second go around at this show because Kaitlyn wanted him there.
On the other hand we had Shawn Booth, a man totally in love with Kaitlyn, seemingly brimming with hatred for Nick. If you read my blog regularly, you know I have favored Shawn for the last few weeks. He fought hard to end up with Kaitlyn, even forgiving/understanding why she took it too far with Nick. More on that later.
We kick off the evening in Malibu California, in a rented house on the beach where the men will meet the Family Bristowe.
When Nick arrives in a guffuffle of awkward shyness and fast talking/slurring, Leslie takes him aside for the Spanish Inquisition. They cry together, both getting emotional over their shared love for Kaitlyn, basically. Hmmm? Really?
The two lovebirds neck at the car and Nick leaves her breathless.
The next day is Shawn's turn to meet the family and he comes bearing a large flower bouquet and gifts for Haley's children, who aren't there. Looks like he even brought the Booth Family jam or something in a mason jar. Mike, Kaitlyn's father, is wearing the same shirt as Shawn, a good sign, and a toast is made at the table, by Shawn, a toast to put the Toastmasters' Club to shame.
Shawn is eloquent. He makes eye contact, he speaks from the heart, not like the day before when Nick could not look them in the eye.
By the end of the visit, the Family Bristowe all seem to be on Team Shawn. Haley tells her sister she definitely is.
A day or two later, Kaitlyn waits for Nick to board a catamaran in Marina del Rey and when he does they take off on the kissing cruise. Soon after they hit open ocean, I thought about getting myself a Dramamine or those sea band bracelets because the sailboat was riding the 12 foot waves like a son of a gun and I felt queasy. Good thing I wasn't the Bachelorette, or I'd be feeding the fish at the back of the boat. But the lovers were undaunted. There is a sweetness to their relationship, I'll admit.
Cue the romantic acoustic guitar music playing the Bachelor poignant love song, and it's suddenly dark, the ship has landed and it's time for drinks. Nick has a condo with a picturesque patio so they sit outside and drink wine and kiss. I loved Kaitlyn's sparkly/shimmery eye shadow. Did anyone notice this? Nice effect on camera.
Cut to the studio audience, (everyone must've been told to wear a colorful cocktail dress with a bold necklace,) Chris Harrison in his purple suit and pink shirt, stands by Nick's family and tells us that what's is coming up will amaze us.
The next day we find ourselves at Malibu's Saddle Rock Winery (probably owned by one of the producer's cousins) where Shawn and Kaitlyn are very awkward with each other. Aside from checking to see if he's wearing sunscreen, she looks like she's about to break up with him. Kaitlyn is in an emotional crisis, because she either loves Nick more, or loves them both and is so confused it ruins her date with Shawn.
Later, they meet at a little cottage where things are slightly better. Shawn gives her a memory jar he's made in craft class the day Nick had his catamaran date (kidding) and Kaitlyn is touched. It's full of pictures of them, notes about them, and trinkets to remind them of their dates.
When we cut to the studio audience again, there is a quiet hush and C.H. let's all this sink in. Nick's little sis looks worried, especially after C.H. says "looks like the parents like Shawn better."
The next day we get to see everyone waking up. Having read the tell all book by Courtney, I know from a production standpoint how this strange morning goes down. The film crew comes over, you pretend to get out of bed, you must stare off at the scenery thoughtfully for 127 takes, then they leave until Neil Lane shows up at the men's door. I'd like to mention here that this was where we lost Nick on Andy's season. And this time, he fears the worst but no. Kaitlyn does not come to his door, it's Neil Lane!
Big sparklers are chosen, both men get dressed, Kaitlyn cleans up good, and the big night begins.
Or you might have a grudge against him and want to get back at him for something.
Nick arrives, cuing us to the fact that this is a death sentence for their relationship. The first one to get out of the limo always leaves. Nick has no idea, gives his speech and pulls out the ring but Kaitlyn stops him. She's crying too hard to speak. He's shocked, but gracious until they start arguing about whether Kaitlyn ever loved him or not. Long story short, Nick insists she doesn't, is pissed and leaves feeling foolish and like a ___ ing joke. Oh my. Nick's little sister is crying in the studio audience front row now.
Shawn arrives and I'm giddy with excitement. He doesn't know if he's first or second, but he's hoping. Has she told him he's the one again? Maybe. His speech about loving her is beautiful, he gets down on one knee, proposes and Kaitlyn says yes! Finally she can tell him she loves him and does, over and over. They are the two "happiest kids in all the land." PHEW!
The Final Rose comes on next and it's three months later. But if you're thinking of C.H. in that studio audience with Nick's family, it's still then. He introduces Shawn and Kaitlyn, the happy couple, and they look soooo happy and cute and in love.
Shawn and Kaitlyn leave the stage and Nick comes out. His teenager way of speaking is completely gone. He's expressing himself perfectly, graciously, in understandable full sentences. He's not touching his face nervously, he's not pulling at his collar, tugging his earlobe. Is that because he's not lying? Was he lying before when he was doing all that squirming with Kaitlyn and her family? C.H. asks questions but can't let Nick answer and keeps interrupting him. Is that because he feels Nick got enough TV time to clear his name from the Andy season? AND, (here's an idea!) did Kaitlyn keep him until the end to help him clear his villainous name? Maybe. Nick and Kaitlyn were telephone buddies before she became the Bachelorette. This has been explained. They had a pre-existing relationship over electronic devices. Maybe Kaitlyn said something like this: "If I get on, I'll take you to the end, dump you, and America will feel badly for you, okay, Nick?") Or, did K find out something bad about Nick when she and Shawn had their first private, off camera conversation and was stringing him along since then? With a big ole grudge.
Nick doesn't hate Shawn with a red hot fury but Shawn hates Nick that much. I believe (from reading between the lines) that Nick said some stuff to make Shawn just plain despise his character. Maybe he admitted to all the guys that he came on the show to clear his name. Nick won't say, but he heard something. Both men admit they wasted time by being immature and should have spent less time worrying about the competition.
Shawn tells us that he spoke very little on camera about Nick but when he did, that was what the producers chose to use for his interview. He indicates the producers liked this angle instead of going with the love stories developing. And time is wasted again with C.H. going on and on talking to these men about their differences, trying to stir the pot, instead of asking Kaitlyn and Shawn, "hey, what's next?"
After the commercial break K comes out and we wonder if this new, nice Nick will be gracious or hit her with a social zinger on national TV, like he did to Andy when he revealed they slept together. K barely hugs him, looks mad, and something is going on. Kaitlyn is very mad, standoffish and strangely nervous to see Nick. It looks like she's trying to not hit him.
But Nick is also mad, mad she let him almost propose again, knowing him the way she did. I was wondering about that too, thinking it wasn't nice of Kaitlyn, until he used the only ammunition he had against her by saying she told him she loved him. Twice. The world already knows they slept together so he couldn't use that zinger again. She's not supposed to say I love you and that was a hit below Kaitlyn's sparkly belt. Not nice, Nick.
Bachelorette Dating Handbook.
Rule number #7 Do not tell any of the men you love them until the proposal or you will be considered in breach of your contract.
When we come back from the commercial break, Nick's gone and the happy couple are back. They can't wait to go to Starbucks, be seen in public, be normal and Shawn can't wait to defend his woman against all the cyber-bullying that Kaitlyn has taken. Sweet!
Today's news tells us that Kaitlyn went shopping for wedding dresses and that she bet someone $1,000 that she and Shawn will not break up. And to a Canuck, that is A LOT of money!!! We are notoriously cheap.
Well done and congratulations go to both Kaitlyn and Shawn who I am sure will be married and happy in another few years. I can't wait for her tell all book to explain what exactly happened during the taping of this show. I bet we missed a lot of juicy stuff! I, for one, would like to know exactly what Nick said to make Shawn hate him. But Shawn is too much of a gentleman to say it on national T.V., I think.
Bachelor in Paradise airs on Sundays and Mondays starting this weekend. Looks terrible/fascinating in a train wreck sort of a way!!!
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Kim Hornsby is the author of The Husband Hunt, a free Amazon romance ebook that is based on a TV dating show like The Bachelor. She also writes award-winning, bestselling suspense for which she thankfully uses an editor.
The Dream Jumper Series