Guard and protect your Pavelkas, people. Bachelor Pad 2 is already a dirty backstabbing mess.
The first act of the three-hour premiere is a fast-paced meet-and-greet where everyone sizes each other up, then trashes the hell out of each other to the cameras. Fun! But then the Jake and Vienna Show takes over and gets a little too self-serious for too long before the third act picks back up as the housemates strategize over which guy and gal to vote out.
And sorry — blame it on the editing, the astrological signs, the elephant in the room, or her actual personality — Vienna Girardi comes off like a drama diva Lady Macbeth, allowing her ex Jake Pavelka to at least give the appearance of taking the high road. Perception is reality. If you don’t want him to be seen as the good cop to your bad, don’t make it so freakin’ easy for him.
Just like last season, there’s a core clique of veterans — led this time by Vienna and her “puppet” Kasey Kahl — and a sad-but-sweet little group of outcasts — led for a second time by Gia Allemand. That should’ve been their first sign of trouble. Gia always has good intentions, but things don’t usually go her way on this show.
Maybe 20 minutes into the premiere, it’s the most obvious thing in the world that power couple Kasey and Vienna should be broken apart and sent home first. Justin “Rated R” Rego — who played The Bachelorette Season 6 like Survivor — sees this right away and tries to go for it, a la Wes Hayden on Season 1. Hate to call him the voice of reason, but on this one point he’s right. Unfortunately, BP2 isn’t Survivor and trying to play both sides only works if people know how to do it right. And his alliance-mate Alli Travis does not know how to do it right.
You know who does? Kasey and Gia. As annoying as that cross-rivalry alliance is for stopping the outcasts from voting out King Threat, it’s smart. And it probably did help save Gia’s butt this time. She needed the help after Jake made the uber-dumb decision to “save” Vienna with a rose. He thought he could play the hero and win her over — or at least win over viewers. Not quite. (Why do guys keep trying to guard and protect Vienna when she’s the one most likely to attack?)
Vienna should’ve just refused the rose — if you don’t want anything to do with him, don’t take anything from him — but instead she keeps it and keeps trashing Jake to the cameras. She doesn’t want to listen to his “I’m sorry” speech. She calls him a monster. But Vienna also fights with Kasey when he fails to die for her during the sex simulation challenge. She knows his integrity is important to him, but she wants him to go back on his word to Gia. At the same time, she and her team vote out Rated R because he has the audacity to shake their hands then run to the other side. What is he supposed to do when a team of people who dislike him approach him with a plan — say “Sorry, guys, I’m going to have to pass on this”?
As Blake Julian put it while voting, “Trust is key.” The first two people voted out of the Pad — Justin and Alli — failed to pass the trust test and that was that. But now the game is just being handed to the “strong” couples in the house. Maybe Rated R should stand for ROTFL at the dumb decisions being made already.
MEET THE PADAWANS!
Or at least a few of them. Only the big guns get full introductions. Others, like Kirk DeWindt and Melissa Schreiber, get about two minutes of air time in the whole episode.
Justin Rego says "so what" if he was caught calling his girlfriend on The Bachelorette Season 6. Now Rated R stands for revenge. And reality star. “My strategy going into Bachelor Pad is to play dirty.” He’s gunning for anyone from his season, since a lot of them held grudges and trashed him at The Men Tell All. So... look out, Kasey and Kirk!
Jackie Gordon wants to find love. She's tired of being single. But she doesn't want to see Michelle Money again. Jackie trashed Michelle on The Bachelor 15: Women Tell All and she doesn't think they could ever be friends. Really? That seems like a stretch. If people can get over being dumped by the Bachelor by the time they fly home, why can’t they get over their rivalries?
Michelle Money says it's been hard to be Crazy Michelle, but when she's on Bachelor Pad there will be some of her classic "fireworks." $250K would allow her to put some money aside for her daughter Brielle's education. But her father has also been diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer and she wants to give some money to research.
Gia Allemand gives us the update: Jake dumped her on The Bachelor, she went on Bachelor Pad 1, she broke up with her boyfriend, dated Wes Hayden, Wes cheated on her with Vienna, and now she hates Vienna. (Why does no one ever just blame Wes and bond over it?) Gia says Vienna only cares about fame and being on TV. "She'll kill you in your sleep." Yikes! Vienna can make herself cry, she's good at that. She thinks Vienna wants to be enemies going into the show because she loves the drama. "It's like a turn-on for her. Vienna's so skank in my book. I just threw up in my mouth thinking about having to live with her." So why are you here?
Vienna Girardi says "I'm competitive and I'm awesome." Jake Pavelka picked her on Season 14 and she says this about that: "God, the prize from The Bachelor sucks. I would've rather lost The Bachelor. Man, that was like a lose-lose." Yeah.
Kasey Kahl says he's put his whole heart on the line, but Vienna hasn’t and he's worried that she might hurt him. He gained 30 pounds of solid muscle before going on the show, but it’s not like he can push or punch Jake. But he can say stuff like this: "I'm going to go take a Jake and wipe my Pavelka." Ha!
Jake Pavelka said he and Vienna were together for eight months and everything was going great. (Great? Really?) Then one day he found out that Vienna had sold their break-up story to a tabloid for a large sum of money. He's nervous going into the house. He's never met Kasey. He doesn't know what it will be like.
Erica Rose wears her tiaras again. She was only 23 on The Bachelor: Rome and admits she was a spoiled brat. She has a trust fund and she's used to having a maid. But she doesn't want to get a job so she'd rather just win the $$. Her astrologer thinks she's going to win. So there you go. She'd hook up with anyone — girl or guy — if it would help her.
Graham Bunn says he's grown up a little bit since The Bachelorette Season 4. He had a pretty serious relationship (with an actress from All My Children) but it didn't work out. Graham said his initial strategy is to focus on the money, no matter how insanely attractive the women may be, because the money can help the children's charities he supports.
Ella Nolan is the single mom from Jake's season. Her son Ethan is the light of her life. They live in an apartment and she wants to buy her son a house. When she was 3, her mother was murdered in front of her and her little sister — by her stepdad. Wow.
Holly Durst, who was originally on Matt Grant's Bachelor Season 12, says she has a commitment issue. Then she met the love of her life, Michael Stagliano. (No mention of Jesse Csincsak?) They dated for about 11 months, then got engaged. (At one point they were planning a double wedding with DeAnna Pappas and Michael’s twin brother Stephen.) Holly called off the engagement. They got back together, but then he dumped her because he couldn’t get over how she broke off the engagement. She said not only did she break his heart, she broke her own heart.
Michael Stagliano said he loved Holly like a husband loves a wife. He's never loved anybody like Holly and that kind of hurt is hard to bounce back from. And now they are together in the Pad. Awkward!
In the house, the first four are Michelle, Blake, Holly, and Graham. Rated R comes in and says the women in the house are more attractive here than on The Bachelorette. (Hear that, Ali Fedotowsky? But he named one of his kittens after you!) Erica shows up and Blake makes a face to the cameras, saying she's a little "thick" and hopes she doesn't stick around. Nice. Holly and her ostrich skirt, on the other hand, he loves because those heels really show off her legs. And Holly is into Blake since he has nice teeth and uses "big words," which is really attractive to her. She doesn't want Michael Stagliano to show up anymore. Wow, that took about half a second on her side. When Stag shows up, Holly's first reaction is "Oh sh*t that's my ex." It's immediately awkward.
Erica tells the cameras she’s heard that Vienna is a b*tch who never has her own apartment, which is apparently weirder than wearing tiaras all the time. When Vienna shows up she starts preparing for Jake's arrival by dissing him to everyone else. Gia also disses Vienna to the cameras — and Chris Harrison — on the way in. Michelle smiles at Gia and says it’s “great” that she gets a second chance on the show, but it’s obvious she means the exact opposite. Blake is genuinely glad to see Gia, though, and the other guys are probably happy too. Gia is chilly to Vienna so, of course, Vienna gets upset. She's waiting for Kasey to protect her. When Vienna walks out, Gia tells everyone that Jake is a good guy. So Gia is captain of Team Jake and Kasey is obviously captain of Team Vienna.
When Kasey arrives and hugs Vienna, Rated R gags behind his back. Justin calls Kasey his arch nemesis on The Bachelorette and his job is to get "Kermit the Frog" and "Miss Piggy" out first. When Ella shows up, she says she wants to feel sorry for Vienna but she also thinks Vienna is just being melodramatic.
Obviously Jake is the last one to arrive, because that's best for drama. He tells Chris he wants closure with Vienna. When Jake walks in the room he hugs Gia and glad-hands the room. When he meets Kasey his eyes light up. "Hey!" Why can't they all just get along, really? Everyone is so anti-Jake when he shows up, it's like the cool clique freezing out the nerdy guy. He's the underdog here, which is weird.
Jake tells Gia he still cares about Vienna. He doesn't know what to do. Gia recommends talking to Kasey first — get it all out now before Kasey has a chance to drink too much and throw a punch. So Jake and Kasey have a pretty cordial talk. It's nice. Kasey says he knows there are two sides to every story and the side that he's heard isn't good. True — he's only heard Vienna's side. Kasey said he's in love with Vienna, so it just hurts him to see how much she is hurt. Without Vienna in this mix, things could be okay. But because Kasey is already tied to Vienna — and there's no way she's going to bury the hatchet anytime soon — there's no closure to be had.
THE HOOK-UP CHALLENGE
The couples have to pair up for the first challenge. The winners will get immunity at the rose ceremony.
At some point Graham and Alli seem to have, um, paired up. And Melissa is flirting with Blake. Blake likes Holly and isn't head-over-heels for Melissa, but he'll do whatever he can for $250K. Kirk had too much to drink and ended up with Erica. Ha! Oh, Ames and Jackie are already lying on top of each other after what must be less than 12 hours. They both move FAST. But they have a strategy — the couples are always targeted, so they are pairing with different people for the first challenge. He will be with Michelle and she will be with Jake. Funny how Gia is with William, who is the second coming of The Weatherman, her platonic buddy from BP1. William's worry: "What if somebody here gets an erection?" Maybe it’ll help you stay up.
Here are the pairs for the "Hook-up" challenge, where the couples are hoisted over a bunch of beds:
Gia & William — First out, 10 minutes after the competition started. Wills didn't seem to do enough to hold her, even though she weighs about 90 pounds soaking wet. William still thought he won, since he got Gia. Gia doesn’t see it that way.
Holly & Michael — Second out.
Graham & Alli — Third out.
Melissa & Blake — Fourth out.
Kirk & Erica — Fifth out.
Ames & Michelle — Sixth out. There's some Kama Sutra-style stuff going on with these two.
Justin & Ella — Seventh out. The final couples have been up for more than 30 minutes at this point.
Vienna & Kasey — Eighth out. Ugh. Everyone's legs are turning purple.
Jake & Jackie — Winners! They get immunity. We hear the "3,000 feet to her death" quote and it isn't about him wanting to kill Vienna. It's his fear of dropping Jackie to her death. "Jake the Bachelor is back," claims Jake the Bachelor. Now he and Jackie are going on a date. Um, congrats?
Rated R is excited because V&K are the ringleaders in the house and this will help him get rid of them. Vienna is ticked off. She blames Kasey for not guarding and protecting her enough. They fight in the hot tub. "Pack your bags," he says. Vienna tells the cameras Kasey needs to know he's there for her, not himself. Sorry, but BARF to that. Vienna is anti-Jake, anti-Gia, and now anti-Kasey. No one is good enough for Vienna. They have a sweet little make-up session involving peanut butter cookies, but these two are exhausting already.
TIME TO MAKE AND BREAK ALLIANCES
Date card: "Jake and Jackie, it's time for dinner above the stars. On your date there will be a third rose. Upon your return to the house, please give this rose to the person you both would like to keep safe at the next rose ceremony."
Gia reads the group date card and you'd think Jake would give the rose to her. Or Jackie would want to give the rose to Ames. Nope. Holly thinks Gia will get the rose. She also thinks everyone wants Gia gone, probably because she already had a shot to win $250K last season. But chances are only the women really want Gia gone.
Back at the house, Kasey and Vienna already have another couple for a final four — Michelle and Graham. When did Michelle and Graham pair up when, last we saw, he was with Alli? Graham said he can take care of Alli. Kasey said they also have a good connection with Kirk, Erica, Holly, and Michael. This is all Kasey's plan. He is the Dave Good of the season so far.
In the rose ceremonies, the guys have to vote to out the girls and the girls vote out the guys. There are nine guys in the house and the core alliance wants Justin to be the swing vote, but only because they need him. They try to give him "the numbers game" speech. Justin shakes hands as an okay. What else can he do? Justin knows, of that group, he's the most disposable. He likes being the swing vote. He wants to be the rebel and go against the core group. Why not? If it works, he could be the leader of his own alliance.
Justin gets to Alli first, saying Graham is planning to "work on" her. So — bad idea alert! — Alli confronts Graham with that, in front of Michelle, Kasey, and Vienna. Now they all feel betrayed by Justin as if he really owes them anything. They all seem to hate him, so why should he vote with them, just because they put him on the spot to shake hands?
JAKE AND JACKIE’S DATE
It's not true that everyone hates Jake. There's a little Sanjaya girl out there who cries — in a good way — when she sees him. (Set-up?) Jackie is impressed with how Jake handles himself around his fans. He's changing her opinion of him. They have fun on the roof of the El Capitan theater. She has nothing negative to say about Jake. She's comfortable around him. But she wants Jake's side of things in terms of the Vienna breakup. He says "Vienna was a really controversial figure” on The Bachelor 14. They went through this journey together and then the show started airing. The tabloids came down hard on them. Around the eight-month mark they had the normal problems that couples have. He got a call from a friend saying that Vienna went to a tabloid and sold their breakup story. She left the ring in the apartment and moved out.
So now Jackie is Team Jake.
It may be worth noting that Vienna has already fought with her own boyfriend after one day on the show, but Jake hasn't fought with anyone yet. Does that make him “fake” and phony or just mature? Jake tells Jackie he made a fool of himself lashing out at Vienna during their breakup special. He doesn’t throw Vienna under the bus because he was not perfect in the relationship either.
Back in the house, Michelle and Vienna are talking about Jake — misunderstood villains love to bond! Vienna is bashing Jake. Does that make her more “real” and honest or just immature?
WHO GETS THE THIRD ROSE?
Jackie brings up the idea of giving the rose to Vienna because Jake wants to have a conversation with her. The next day, Jackie freaks out and wants nothing to do with the decision. “You’re the pilot. You work well under pressure.” Girl, please.
Rated R says it’s a “dumb, dumb, dumb” idea to give the rose to Vienna over Gia. He thinks it would be the dumbest move in Bachelor Pad history, which would let Gia off the hook since she currently owns that title from saving Wes over Craig M. last season. Jake thinks if he “saves” Vienna, he’ll be the hero. That is dumb. Even Gia thinks Jake is dumb at this point. Gia is sick of Jake giving roses to Vienna over her. It’s Season 14 all over again.
In front of everyone in the house, Jake says he’s giving the rose to Vienna "for some very specific reasons" and he wants to talk to her and Kasey. She could just refuse the rose, you know.
Gia is "so hurt and heartbroken." Why? "He didn't think about my feelings. He didn't think about keeping me safe." But Jake didn’t come on the show to deal with Gia. Gia already had a shot on this show last season. What is she even doing there?
Jake gives a speech to Vienna (and Kasey) about how their great times were great and their bad times were bad. "I'm just going to be real honest in front of the man you love and get some things on the table. Vienna, I'm sorry that I raised my voice to you on TV. I’m so sorry that I did that. I didn't mean it. I was losing you and not ready to accept what was going on. And I'm very sorry that I told you to quit interrupting and slapped my knee like a fool. Because it doesn't really matter what happened. You don't talk to people like that, that you love. You just don't do that. ... What it was, Vienna, it was two wrong people trying to make something work that wasn't going to work. And I was wrong and I'm sorry."
There are no tears or interruptions. It appears to go well, with Vienna telling Jake she is happy now. Jake tells the cameras he has been waiting a year to have that talk with Vienna. Vienna tells the cameras that to sit down with Jake and listen to him apologize was "torture." It literally made her sick. She's not going to listen to it. Her response, to the cameras is, "Jake Pavelka, I think he's a phony robot. He has no real feelings. He's a complete monster. He's playing everyone like a fool. And I think the real reason he's here is to make my life miserable."
Ouch! Kasey and Vienna tell each other they love each other. She says he's her everything and she's going to marry him and have his babies. Kasey calls Jake an a**hole. For some reason we have to watch grainy footage of them going to bed together.
Gia is ticked because now Vienna and Kasey have the power. "They won. They won." Gia thinks the only shot she has is to go to Kasey and try to make a deal. She thinks she has more guys on her side. He thinks he has more guys on his side. But they decide to make an alliance together. He won’t vote for her. She won’t vote for him. Clever, but V won’t like that. And of course she shows up because Kasey can’t do anything without her.
But now Jake is guarding and protecting Vienna, and Kasey and Gia are guarding and protecting each other.
WHO SHOULD BE VOTED OUT?
Vienna thinks her "team" is voting out Gia. Rated R is worried that Alli is playing both sides. Alli is blindsided. She's surprised that her name is on the chopping block. Has she met herself? Because of what she did the day before, Justin is probably going to get voted out. True. "Trust is key," as Blake says. Not sure why he's the one to say it, but he's right.
Ella sits down with Justin and tells him the girls want to dump him because he's been playing both sides. He does that all the time in the real world and it usually works, but not this time. He's just upset because he doesn't get to swim in the pool!
Blake talks to Jackie about how Kasey and Vienna are such a strong couple, if they don't try to get rid of Kasey now it will be impossible to break up the big guns later. Good! That's the best strategic decision to date. All of the “outcasts” seem to be on board... except for Gia, since she made an alliance with Kasey. They are guarding and protecting each other. Gia is still bitter about Jake's rose move. She is the swing vote for the women. So, once again, Gia is going to make a bad BP1 decision. This is her forte.
Jake and Jackie have to hand out the roses to the other contestants, since they won the first challenge. This really is turning into Big Brother. Rated R calls Ali “a drunken moron” for throwing him under the bus. Chances are plenty of people are going to come up with even more creative names for him after tonight.
First rose: Ames — who did NOT get enough air time tonight
4. Holly — her laugh is going to get old by Episode 2
9. Michael — not that it matters, but how short is he?
Ladies, gentlemen, these are the two final roses left tonight. There are four people left.
So Justin and All are gone. Congrats to Gia and Kasey for (drink up for the buzz word of the night!) “protecting” each other.
Justin doesn’t even want to shake hands with the guys. He makes a speech about how Kasey didn’t even save his woman, he left that to his girlfriend’s ex. (True.) He takes Jake’s rose anyway. “I’m walking out here with a rose one way or another.” Sore loser alert! In the limo, he trashes Alli and her big fake boobs for ruining his plans. Ha. She’s part of it, but as usual, Justin is the one who ruined Justin’s plans.
Poor Alli feels blindsided. Sweet girl, but not the sharpest thorn on the rose when it comes to strategy.
Kasey is really proud of himself at this point, even though he personally saved his g-friend’s nemesis. Jake hasn’t trashed V at all. He saved her. Gia is the one really going after Vienna and she’s the one he protected.
COMING UP THIS SEASON
Now that the Jake/Vienna/Kasey/Gia drama square is up and running, it’s time for the Michael/Holly/Blake/Melissa drama to take off.
Wanna know what happens next? Check out Reality Steve’s episode-by-episode spoilers.
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