COCKTAIL PARTY

Credit: WENN Photo: Ashley Toasts to the Remaining Men in Phuket in Season 7, Episode 4

Just like the last time William hurt her feelings, Ashley makes a speech in front of the other bachelors, telling them she realizes all the guys aren’t going to fall in love with her.

Constantine is sweating through his shirt, but he admits he feels closer to the other guys at this point, but it’s a different kind of closeness. Constantine wants to know where he stands with Ashley before he takes her home to meet his family.

Ashley doesn’t feel like herself. Her big insecurity is coming back — that she’s going to fall in love and her guy won’t love her back. Thanks, William!

Ashley has a talk with JP and he says he was stung by her date with Ben F. He can see a future with her. He doesn’t see anybody else with her. She’s not feeling like herself. Why does JP always have to be the victim of Ashley’s Bentley fixation?

TWO-ON-ONE DATE

Credit: Craig Sjodin/ABC Television Group ©2011 Disney Photo: William Bachelorette Season 7 Promo Photo

Date card: Ben C. and William “Guide me to love”

Ashley can relate to the awfulness of two-on-one dates since she was on one with Ashley Spivey on The Bachelor.

They take a raft journey down river. It looks muggy and buggy. William is at the front as Ben and Ashley talk in the back. Will is worried about losing the rose, as opposed to losing Ashley’s love. He seems to be in competition mode. William keeps forgetting why he’s here. He’s irritated by Bency and wants to make a move.

William talks to Ashley and tells her he thinks Bency is ready to go home. “From what I’ve heard around the house, he’s more looking forward to the dating websites when he gets off here.”

Ashley can’t believe Bency would tell the guys that. Wouldn’t the guys tell her? Will says the guys are open with each other. She’s worried that it’s the same deal for other guys. Probably true. “At this point, some people still have you on their minds, some people don’t.” OUCH. William is just naturally hurtful. What a gift he has for bringing out her insecurities.

Ashley sends Ben home right away, even before talking to him about William’s allegations. He wants to address what was said. He said it’s a betrayal since anyone who heard him say that probably knew he was joking around. Or maybe he’s just upset because fewer ladies will want to date him on those websites.

Ashley said going into the date she was dreading saying goodbye to Ben C. So she already had a plan to dump him?

That night, Ashley and William have dinner. Ashley wants the sparks to return, since their one-on-one date in Vegas was the best first date she’s ever had. William interprets her complete acceptance of his Bency revelation as evidence that she cares about him, when really it’s just evidence of her deep-set insecurities. He’s confident, but Ashley doesn’t have that feeling for William anymore. She’s looking for a man, not a 30-year-old boy.

There’s no spark. So there’s no rose.

Credit: Dave Hagerman/ABC Television Group © 2011 Disney Photo: Ashley Watches Her Bachelors Duke It Out in The Bachelorette Season 7, Episode 5

Some people just have a gift. Ashley Hebert has a gift for going from zero to extremely insecure in 5 seconds flat and William Holman has a gift for helping her get there.

The guy who made her feel like crap on the comedy roast date makes her feel like crap all over again on this week’s episode, when he announces that, oh yeah, some of the guys aren’t even thinking about you anymore. And Ben Castoriano is one of them. He can’t wait to go home and hit up the web to start dating other chicks.

Yes, Prince William is not exactly the Prince of Tact, but we can’t agree that he’s “the world’s biggest f--king jackass” since Bentley Williams is still coming back.

JP Rosenbaum said there's no crying in Muay Thai, but we’re about ready to cry with frustration. Just when Ashley seems to be getting somewhere — how adorable was that “mental kiss” with Ben Flajnik! — a new black cloud flies over her “journey” through the “process.” And we don’t even mean poor Ames Brown wearing pink shorts while getting a concussion. If anyone deserves to feel insecure it’s that guy, but instead he made the best of it.

William is gone and even though we loved him once, the spark is gone for us too. The jury is still out on Bency, since Ashley dumped him before even hearing his side of things. Her quick reaction to the mere suggestion that Bency wasn’t into her just proves that if ABC showed Ashley the comments Bentley made about her behind her back, she would stop pining. She’d dump him and move on.

Ben F. and JP are the clear frontrunners right now. Blake Julian got the group date rose because he, too, played the insecurity card. He asked for reassurance and Ashley — perhaps recognizing herself from The Bachelor — gave it to him. Maybe all dentists are insecure.

Read on for a full recap of Episode 5:

GROUP DATE: FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!

Date card: Constantine, Ames, Nick, Blake, Lucas, Ryan, JP, and Mickey

Ashley wants the guys to have fun and also experience things that are part of traditional Thai culture. So they have to kick the crap out of each other. They train with Muay Thai boxers. Hands, fists, legs — anything goes, Ames explains. Ashley wants to see masculinity in her guys.

We wanna see that too. Hot DAMN, boys!

Ashley has her hands on JP in training. You can tell her favorites already. Ames, on the other hand, is too reserved for this. He falls on his butt during training. He has to wear pink shorts. Just put the poor guy in high heels already.

They have to fight each other with an audience of about 200 people around them. Yikes. ‘Cause the comedy roast wasn’t painful enough!

JP is starting to freak out, ‘cause he’s the smallest guy there. No one seems to want to do this. Once again, the date is about torture more than romance.

Blake vs. Lucas = Ashley finally realizes this date may be too dangerous. But Blake wins.

Mickey vs. JP = Ashley is cringing while Ryan, sitting next to her, is having a blast. JP ends up winning. “The Jew from Long Island kicked the Irishman's ass from Cleveland.” Ha!

Ames vs. Ryan = Ames has never been in a fight in his life. He probably has servants for that sort of thing. Ryan wins, but really no one wins because poor Ames is hurt. Everyone was concerned for Ames, who had a bloody nose and bloodshot eyes.

Nick vs. Constantine = While this heavyweight battle is happening, everyone is worried about Ames. Ashley doesn’t even watch. She runs off to get medical help. Constantine wins.

Poor Ames looks awkward and embarrassed in the back of the ambulance as he’s carted away. The fact that Ashley doesn’t hold his hand or go with him says a lot.

The fighting seems to be done. That night, Ames is still not with them as they have their post-carnage party. Once again, Ashley is having trouble focusing as she talks to the guys. They show off their bruises and she’s still thinking about Ames. Then Ames shows up — not wearing pink shorts. Poor embarrassed Ames. He has a big, bright smile on his face but it can’t be a great feeling. He’s having trouble speaking to Ashley. He had a mild concussion?! This show is deadly. If only he could sue for damages.

Blake and Ashley talk. He looks shiny. He says love is a marathon, not a sprint. He doesn’t trust relationships that are “hot out of the gate.” She immediately thinks of Bentley. We immediately think of The Bachelor franchise as a whole. Blake plays insecure and wants some reassurance that he’s attracted to her.

Lucas is a golfer. She wants golf instructions right there. Isn’t that like a premiere night trick? She’s actually turned on by golf, which is weird, but she is the girl who wants to be called “Cupcake.” Lucas brings up Bentley as someone she’s attracted to. He can see it in her eyes? Really? Can we see producer manipulation in his eyes? Who would even still remember Bentley at this point (besides her)?

Ryan makes more cheesy statements about wishing he would get the date rose, but it goes to Blake. Probably because he pulled an Ashley and asked for reassurance. She responds to neediness. Blake and Ashley kiss. He’s already talking about their kids.

DATE WITH BEN FLAJNIK

Credit: Craig Sjodin/ABC Television Group ©2011 Disney Photo: Ben F. Bachelorette Season 7 Promo Photo

Date card: Ben Flajnik, "Let's fall in love in Chiang Mai"

Ames tells us Ben and Ashley have visible chemistry and it makes the other guys feel threatened. Are they more jealous of him or her?

Ben is such a low-key guy. His voice is so soft and mellow, it’s hard to gauge how much he really cares. However, he is wearing red and she is wearing hot pink. Their clothes want them to break up already.

They have a cool street date, wandering around shopping in the markets. He feels like he’s on vacation with his girlfriend, which is super cute. She said she wants a guy she wants to touch all the time and she has her hands on this guy. They do seem to be comfortable together and he is getting “hotter” to her. Ben says “How beautiful is Ashley?” He tells the cameras he’s starting to see her as a potential fiancee.

They visit a phenomenal temple that does not deserve to be sullied by their clashing colors. There’s an awkward pause where they seem to want to kiss but they can’t kiss on the temple stairs. It’s like Brad Womack and Emily Maynard when little Ricki was sleeping upstairs!

They have a mental kiss, which is the sexiest thing that’s happened on this show in a while. They are letting the tension build. Ashley feels like Ben likes her. And she wants to jump him. Down girl!

That night, Ashley says she’s so comfortable with Ben and it feels like he’s been her boyfriend for a long time. They have a stunning outdoor dinner. She rubs his belly. She really can’t stop touching him. It’s obvious which guys she’s feeling (literally) and who is just sort of there.

They talk about his wine biz again. She wants to know about his day-to-day life and she wants to get involved and help. That’s a good sign. He said probably about a year ago, he wasn’t emotionally available and not ready to do something like this. A lot of that stemmed from his father’s passing about 4.5 years ago. His dad was a big part of his life. In the past few years, even when he dated women, he wasn’t fair to them because he was “an emotional zombie.” In the last year he’s realized he needs to start taking down his emotional walls.

Ashley is hanging on his every word. This is a nice speech for the day after Father’s Day.

Ben said he wants to spoil someone else and make his lady his priority. That’s his “agenda.” He says everything she’s hoping to hear. That little wink. When he said he’d have wine parties for his friends and her friends — “your friends,” wink — that was so cute.

He gets a rose. They kiss. Ashley says there’s so much passion between them. She thinks about how lucky she is to be with him. “This could be the beginning of a very happy ending for me.”

ROSE CEREMONY

Ashley talks to Chris Harrison and says she can’t stop thinking about Bentley. She wants closure to end their “dot-dot-dot” conversation. She realizes people may think she’s crazy. She barely knew the guy, but he’s getting a free trip around the world just to… what? What’s he going to say? The truth? That he wasn’t that into her? Is he going to string her along more?

Ben F. and Blake already have roses at this point. The rest go to:

1. Constantine
2. Lucas
3. JP
4. Ames
5. Mickey
6. Ryan

Nick Peterson goes home. He claims he’s devastated. 

TRIP TO TEMPLE TOWN

Chiang Mai, Thailand, is known for monks and temples and other sacred stuff frat boy types are unlikely to fully appreciate. It’s also apparently “the perfect place to fall in love,” since that’s mentioned 100 times.

They stay at the most gorgeous private villa. They should stay there for the rest of the season. And then they should let us stay there.

COMING UP

They are going to Hong Kong! Hopefully it will be less hot and humid. There’s too much sweating going on. No one seems comfortable. Oh, and Bentley is coming back. He’s in the hotel. Her brain is telling her “This guy is the one.” Did she have a concussion, too?

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