It was pretty much love at first sight for Jackie Gordon and Ames Brown on Bachelor Pad Season 2. Ames says the romance was wonderful while it lasted, but it’s over now. And no one is more sad about it than Gia Allemand.
“If it was wonderful while it lasted, what the heck?” Gia asks, joining in the barrage of reporters’ questions during Tuesday’s exit interview with the three castoffs.
Jackie also seems confused about why the love faded after only a couple of weeks. After all, they both live in New York City, both said they are currently single, and Ames keeps gushing about how much he loved spending time with Jackie on the show.
“I, personally, was definitely shocked that it ended as it did. I was certainly not expecting that,” Jackie said of the break-up, adding that she’s already cried it out. So is this just a plan for Ames to keep himself nice and single to be the next Bachelor… or what? He takes a lot of questions on what happened, but stays coy and mysterious — and Jackie just hints to it being Ames’ decision without elaborating. It’s sad but also kind of annoying. It is their personal lives, but still! Going from such a romantic high to a splat on the ground deserves some kind of explanation, at least to Jackie, no?
Anyway, Gia, Ames, and Jackie also talk about other people in the house. Gia says Jake Pavelka is one of the best people she’s ever met. “I’m proud to say I’m his friend.” She hopes he wins the show. On the other hand, she is very hurt by Graham Bunn. She thought of Graham as a friend just as close as Jake, if not closer, and she doesn’t think they’ll ever be that close again.
In terms of power couple Kasey Kahl and Vienna Girardi, Gia said she thinks Kasey is a good guy but this season in particular has brought out many people’s bad sides. “I think Kasey and Vienna just didn’t care much about people’s feelings and were more into winning than anything else.”
Read on for a lot more:
Ames and Jackie, can you tell us the status of your relationship right now?
Ames: Well, we had a great time on the show and it was love over money in the competition and so on, and we’re not still dating but we enjoyed every moment we had together.
Gia, have you forgiven Graham for going behind your back and telling Kasey you had spoken to him?
Gia: I think forgiveness is always essential in life. I believe in forgiving anybody if they want to be forgiven, but yeah I forgave him. As for us ever rekindling the friendship that we once had, I don’t believe that will ever happen.
Gia, it was really a shock for viewers to see you decide to leave. Was it that one thing that made you say “I don’t want to do this anymore”? Or was it a build-up of things that maybe we didn’t get to see?
Gia: It was definitely a build-up of things. Being on the show last year and knowing what to expect, and being on this show this year and not have one person be honest except for Jackie — like, the only people I could trust were Jackie, Ames, and Jake. And just having, like, someone like Graham who I thought was my really good friend do something like that just put me over the edge. It just wasn’t worth me staying there anymore.
For Jackie and Ames, were you guys surprised at how quickly you connected while on the show?
Jackie: Yeah, for me it usually doesn’t happen so fast. Certainly I believe it was love at first sight, for me anyways. It’s possible — and it’s even possible in the Bachelor Pad house, remarkably. I shocked myself in my ability to fall so quickly. But Ames is a wonderful person and he made me feel very, very comfortable.
Were you more surprised that you were eliminated or that Ames was leaving with you?
Jackie: I have to say it wasn’t so much of a shock that I was eliminated that night. I knew that I hadn’t really had my head in the game for quite some time because Ames and I had started our relationship in the house. I was pretty surprised that Ames eliminated himself to accompany me in the limo. It was a pleasant surprise. He had not told me that he was going to do that, so it was a very sweet moment.
Ames, assuming you watched last night’s episode, were you surprised to see Kasey and Vienna go against the pact you guys made?
Ames: We were not expecting Kasey and Vienna to turn on us. They had given us their word but I think I speak for Jackie when I say we wish them the best regardless.
Gia, do you have any regrets leaving the way that you did?
Gia: The one regret I have leaving, I wish I would’ve — before I left — spoke my mind a little more and told people what they’re doing is wrong in every way. I wish I would’ve tried to make more of an impact on showing people that you can play this game in an adult, strategic, and morally right way. I wish I would’ve been more vocal about that before leaving.
Jackie, what are your thoughts on how Erica was portrayed in the episode? She seemed upset afterward.
Jackie: It was really hard to watch Erica go through that much pain — physically and emotionally. She is a great girl. It is the nature of the game. We are put in these very stressful situations where we have to potentially hurt other people’s feelings and that’s the sad part about a game like this. But I believe we all felt for her and all pretty much tried to help reassure her about what a great girl she is and how she shouldn’t worry.
Ames, when we were all watching last night we were comparing Blake to Bentley from your season. It was surprising to see him appear to be cruel, talking about Melissa. Did you see that on your season, about Blake not being so nice?
Ames: Well, one thing Blake did do in the episode from last night is he did honor his friendship to me and to Jackie and voted to keep Jackie with us on the show. So I say we’re pretty much indebted to him. But no, he had outstanding character on the season of The Bachelorette I was in.
From watching the show it seemed obvious that Kasey was in a good position to run the game if you didn’t get rid of him in that first rose ceremony. So why were you so adamant about honoring that brief alliance that you had made with him and do you think he really wouldn’t have voted you out the second he got the chance?
Gia: What it comes down to with me, and the person that I am, anything that I say I really try to do. I try to be real and honest as much as I can be and I just try not to let money get in the way of destroying that good quality I have created for myself. If I had voted for Kasey it may have gotten me farther in the game and I may have won but I have to sleep at night knowing that I was dishonest.
Ames, how was it going on Bachelor Pad so quickly after being on The Bachelorette with Ashley? What were your intentions going on the show? And where are you right now? Would you consider being the next Bachelor?
Ames: I think when I met Jackie I pretty much forgot about everything that I was thinking because she was so beautiful and charming. So I can’t even remember what my plan was coming into the Bachelor Pad because whatever it was changed pretty instantly. On your second question about the Bachelor, it hasn’t been discussed or anything. So, at this point, I don’t even know.
Gia, you were extremely upset in the premiere episode when Jake gave Vienna the rose. Do you think he was being honest when he said he was trying to extend an olive branch to Vienna or do you think he was trying to play the nice guy in front of the cameras? Do you think Vienna would’ve gone home without that rose?
Gia: I think Jake’s whole point of going on that show was to do something good and to be a bigger and better person. And as much as I didn’t agree with him giving her the rose, I understand that that rose, to him, it just meant to him “I’m sorry for whatever. Can we be friends in this house? Can you stop telling everyone to hate me?” ‘Cause at that point, not one person in that house liked Jake or gave him a chance because Vienna had rallied people up for weeks before this game, before this show, and got everyone to think Jake was this monster. So he just wanted to give something to break this fight between [them]. His strategy didn’t work. He’s genuinely one of the best people I have ever had the opportunity to meet in my life and I’m proud to say I’m his friend.
Jackie, you seemed to be skeptical of Jake going into the date on the premiere, then he won you over. But you seemed to be against him by the time you got to the egg challenge. Did you ever develop feelings for him?
Jackie: I, too, can only say wonderful things about Jake. In the beginning I admit that I was skeptical. Vienna made a very strong case against him and I just felt, as another woman, I tend to believe what a woman says of her man, initially. But once I got to know him — and I did get to know him very well from our date, we had a long time together alone — I realized his intentions are pure, they are good, he is there for the right reasons, he wants to make amends with Vienna and put this past him and move on. And I respect him for making as much of an effort as he did to make those feelings known to both Kasey and Vienna. So, as for feelings for Jake? Who’s to say? I don’t know if things would’ve been different if situations or different people had been on the show or hadn’t been. But I think he’s highly attractive inside and out.
Ames and Jackie, everywhere all over Facebook, Twitter, everyone was talking about that moment as one of reality TV’s best moments. So now we’re so sad to hear that you broke up! Can you give us a short synopsis of what happened, why it didn’t work out?
Ames: We had an amazing time while we were together and just after a little while, split up. Nothing too exotic.
Was there a long-distance situation?
Ames: No, there was no long-distance situation.
And you’re obviously still friends?
Ames: Totally, absolutely.
Do you think it was more of how it happens sometimes when there’s cameras around and it heightens the emotions, and then you get back to reality it’s like “Oops, maybe we’re not as compatible”?
Jackie: I think it could be a combination of that. I also think that life situations that come in afterward, you don’t predict certain inside influences and things that can happen outside of your control once you get out of a very controlled environment. I, personally, was definitely shocked that it ended as it did. I was certainly not expecting that. I thought that this had the potential [for] forever, so, you know. But in every relationship nothing’s maybe exactly perfect.
Can you pinpoint what maybe was the one thing that led to the demise?
Jackie: No, unfortunately, I wish I could.
Gia: I’m just finding this out, you guys. I can’t believe I’m hearing this! I’m sorry to butt in. Was it a mutual thing, like where the heck have I been?
Gia, you didn’t find love on The Bachelor and you didn’t win Bachelor Pad 1 or 2. If they asked you to be the Bachelorette would you do it? We need love for you.
Gia: Oh, I have so much love. I have a 6’10” honey bunch that is just the cutest thing ever. I wouldn’t give him up for anything. [Editor’s note: She’s talking about her boyfriend, Ryan Anderson.]
Gia, you’ve done Bachelor Pad before and you said to Chris at the end that maybe it wasn’t the show for you. Was it really so different from last time?
Gia: This time was like 100 times crazier than last year. Last year was like, everyone was strategizing, but people were strategizing in a normal way. You knew who you could trust and who you couldn’t trust and you knew what sides there were and you knew what advantage you had. This time people were saying they’re your friends, people you think were your friends were going behind your back talking bad about you. It was just every bad quality that you can think of was in that house.
Do you think it was because they watched the first season and knew how to play the game this time?
Gia: Yeah. A lot of people — like, I know Kasey and Vienna had a huge advantage beforehand living in L.A., going to a lot of Bachelor reunions. They knew a lot of the people and they formed these alliances weeks before the show. So people like me, Jackie, Ames, and Jake really didn’t have as much of a shot and it was very limited what we could do. It just was a really tough time there this year.
Out of the people who are left, who would you want to win?
Jackie: I, personally, very much relate to Ella. I think she’s a great girl, strong, she has a great reason to be there, she has to provide for her young son. And I think her intentions are also very pure, so I’d like to see Ella win.
Gia: I’d like to see Jake win. Yeah.
Ames: And I was too consumed with Jackie to notice anyone else. I think we won.
What was your favorite moment from the filming of the show?
Ames: Well for me it would be, of course, the exit with Jackie.
Jackie: For me it would be probably the exit too...
Gia: For me it was probably going home! I was just happy to get out of there.
You seem like three of the nicest people on the show. Did you think going into it, and Gia you had obviously been there before, did you think you could be manipulative enough to possibly get to the end?
Gia: I came into this again and I was like, I had a strategy last year but I wasn’t as strong as everybody else. I wasn’t able to fake [anything]. I blatantly told Kiptyn I voted him off. … I thought this year I’m like “Yeah, I’m going to strategize this year, I’m going to do this differently.” I came in there and I was even softer than last year. I had no shot, but I feel so blessed to have went on the show and met people like Jackie and Ames, because there’s not many people out there like these two. And bless your heart, Ames, for leaving the way you did. I can’t even, I never imagined seeing that. Really, I am happy to be part of something with you two.
Jackie: Aww, it’s mutual, Gia!
Gia: Can I stay on the phone with you guys?
Ames: Have all the questions been submitted?
Gia: Okay, I think they left us now we can talk.
Ames: Let’s just make sure.
Operator: They’re still on.
Now I feel guilty. Sorry we’re still here! Gia, today it looked like Vienna and Kasey put out a video with their thoughts on Episode 2. Vienna said you and she made up on the first night and were friends again, then she saw that you were trying to get rid of her on the second episode. Can you talk about your relationship now and what happened with you on the show?
Gia: Yeah, I’d love to actually. Kasey, I’ve always had a big heart for Kasey and I’ve always respected Kasey and love Kasey. I think that he is a good person. I feel bad that we don’t have the relationship that we once had. As for me and Vienna, we did talk in the house a little bit. I never received an apology from her but I did know that I had to live in a house with this girl and I didn’t want to be enemies with her. We were adults to one another. She didn’t yell at me. She did make me feel uncomfortable a lot of the time. She did make Jake feel uncomfortable, which makes me feel uncomfortable. I wouldn’t call Vienna my friend by any means, but I wouldn’t call her my enemy. If I saw her I’d say hello, but that’s the extent of what her and I will ever be.
It looks like Kasey and Vienna are almost getting the “villain” edit on the show. Do you think what we’re seeing from there is fair or are there a lot of good sides of them that the show is just leaving out?
Gia: I think everybody has a good and bad in them. I think that, from the past, when there’s money involved, some people forget and let their bad personality traits come out a little more than their good. I think Kasey and Vienna just didn’t care much about people’s feelings and were more into winning than anything else and I think that’s where they went wrong.
It’s infuriating watching this show. How can everyone not see that you have to break up power couples, like Vienna and Kasey?
Gia: I asked myself that last year, I asked myself this year, not one person — sorry Jackie and Ames, I love you both — nobody understood that. I didn’t want to be the person that’s like “Oh, you have to do this, you have to do that.” I want people to make their own decisions. I want people to learn. And that’s why I wasn’t so hard on Jake. I could’ve — me and Jake are very close, I could’ve made him not give the rose to Vienna, but I know that he wanted to do and his heart was righteous so I let him do that, make his own decision.
It blows my mind, ‘cause you can see Kasey and Vienna getting very cocky, saying they’re in charge. How are all these adults not saying “Wait a second, you don’t tell me what to do and run this game?”
Gia: It’s crazy. People, like, have so much fear of leaving that they put their fate in the hands of the two people that are most vocal.
Jackie: That’s what I have to say as well. I think people are more afraid of them than anything. … People were feeling like they were the ones to try to hold the strings to keep everybody around. It’s unfortunate that other people didn’t speak up more, including myself, but obviously my intentions in playing the game had changed.
Do you guys think this season, in terms of the casting — Jackie and Michelle had a feud, putting Holly and Mike in there, Gia and Vienna had issues, and Vienna, Kasey and Jake had issues — do you think it was just more likely to be dramatic and crazy than it was the first time just in terms of casting?
Jackie: Absolutely. I think that that is no shock to anybody that they chose the cast as they did. The nature of the show is to watch people pitted against one another and see how far they will go to win a quarter of a million dollars. So I am not shocked at all by the cast and I think they were brilliant in casting who they did and, you know, I think the ratings are kind of proving that as well.
Jackie and Ames, how long did your relationship last?
Ames: A couple weeks, maybe? But it was wonderful while it lasted.
Gia: Then why isn’t it still going on? You two just, like, told me there’s no Santa Claus! If it was wonderful while it lasted, what the heck? I’m sorry you two but I had not heard this.
Ames: Let’s just go get lunch, okay?
Gia: There’s no reason for you not to be together!
Jackie: I think it was a shock to myself just as much as all of you guys, so it is what it is. Things happen. You know, I’m not gonna say I didn’t have my share of heartbreak, I certainly did. Sorry, Ames. I have cried it out a lot. It’s been hard. But, you know, you live and you learn and, you know, I’m glad that I loved.
Gia: You are coming over today. I can’t believe you’re going through this and you guys didn’t tell me.
The way it sounds is, this was an Ames decision and not a Jackie decision? Or was it a mutual decision?
Jackie: I was certainly surprised by it. It kind of came out of nowhere, at least for me. As far as I knew for a while things were great. I just saw it lasting much, much longer than it did. But, you know, it takes two. So I guess he didn’t and you know it was hard. It’s a hard pill to swallow when you find love — especially on a show like that where it’s so unusual — and it leaves you. It’s hard.
Ames, can you give us any clue?
You’re being kind of cagey and obviously it’s a personal thing why you broke up, but you seemed so caught up in it enough...
Ames: We just — there’s nothing bad I could possibly say. She is wonderful in every way. We just weren’t maybe the ideal match.
So no chance of reconciliation?
Ames: I don’t think so.
Jackie, you said Vienna made a strong case against Jake. Do you think that all that negativity she put out there could backfire as the show continues? It looks like some people are starting to get their fill of that, particularly Ella and Kirk.
Jackie: I think what we put out in the universe comes back to us. I don’t know. … I not going to say anything bad about Vienna, I think she’s a fine human being but she has a very forceful way about her and it could possibly — I’m sure the personalities in the house will eventually start to clash more than they are right now. It’s totally natural on reality TV.
Gia: I think she just had too many weeks in advance of putting it in people’s heads what Jake didn’t do to her, or over-exaggerating their relationship. I know that there were some ups and downs in their relationship but what she made Jake out to be is completely false. And if that was your strategy to lie about someone’s character, then it’s in everyone’s heads. It’s been drilled in there for weeks. And Jake doesn’t know many — he doesn’t talk to anybody on The Bachelor, he works a lot, he keeps to himself, he went in there thinking he had a pretty good shot to make friends, and he walked out of there not even being able to make a friend because of the judgments already put on him.
Watching the show back now, is there anybody’s behavior that’s really surprising to you, maybe somebody that’s being a little more manipulative and shady, shadier than you actually saw being on the show?
Gia: Graham. Definitely Graham. I still am surprised to this day over Graham because we were like best friends. We were as close as — like me and Jake are really close, but me and Graham were just as close, if not closer. We hung out all the time in New York. I always participated in his charity and do whatever I can to help him out. Being on the show [I was surprised to see him] ignoring me and then voting me off. You know, it’s so hurtful to even stay in that house when a friend for a year and a half is doing that to you.
Ames and Jackie, anyone in the house that you saw a different side of watching the show or maybe they were a little worse than you had thought when you were on the show?
Ames: I was too consumed with enjoying time with Jackie to pay any attention to how people were on the show. So really I had no expectations to be shattered.
Jackie and Ames, given that you are not dating each other anymore, are you both still single or are either of you dating someone else now?
Ames: I am currently single.
Jackie: I am also currently single.
Ames, what was going through your mind when you decided to chase after the limo and join Jackie? You looked kind of confused for a minute. Were you at all considering staying in the mansion to continue competing? Had you pre-planned your exit well ahead or was it a spur-of-the-moment decision?
Ames: It was pretty spur-of-the-moment, but I never really had any doubt and knew what I had to do. If there was any look of confusion on my face it was just how to physically engineer getting into the limo because there are certain rules around rose ceremonies. But it was definitely the best thing I did at Bachelor Pad, and certainly the most rewarding, and I wouldn’t change it for anything.
Gia, you seemed shocked that Graham told Kasey what your plans were to wipe out the power couples. Did you ever get the explanation you were looking for as to exactly what he said and why he would do that to you? And are you still friends with him? If so, how much of a process was it for you to move on?
Gia: I was extremely shocked at what Graham did to me. Graham is like Jake to me, so I couldn’t believe that he would sit there with me for — you guys only saw a few minutes but it was hours of talking, catching up, like planning this and like being “Oh it’s going to be great, we’re going to kick out the power couples, we’re going to get out the drama, we’re going to get out all this madness and it’s going to be good and everyone’s going to have this great shot.” We’ve been really good friends, we live in New York together, and then he goes and does that to me. I just lost a friend on this national TV show. I was heartbroken. I had nothing else there. I knew Jake was going to go home. There was nothing else for me to be there for. The money wasn’t worth it. If you have no friends there and people are being all fake and everyone’s hurting each other, why do you want to be part of something like that?
So are you still talking to him now? Was there a reconciliation?
Gia: Graham has reached out to me a few times and apologized. I do forgive him. He was a great friend of mine. I don’t think we’re going to be as close as we once were, but forgiveness is good.
What are your thoughts about Melissa and her relationship with Blake? Jackie you were on The Bachelor with Melissa, do you think we’re getting an accurate depiction of her or is it just the editing?
Jackie: You know, I respect Melissa. She acts on how she feels and she’s very honest and up front about her emotions. … I actually feel sorry for her that she got caught up in the situations that she did get caught up in. I know it’s unfortunate [what happened on] our season of The Bachelor with Raichel and I know that she regrets that. And also the time with Blake, I think that that was kind of out of her control. She let her heart lead and she’s a very emotional girl. I’m sure it’s hard for her to experience this and watch it later. But I think she’s a good girl.