Emily Maynard and her collection of leather jackets have traveled the world in search of the perfect man. Her criteria? Someone who will pack her full of babies, pronto. After weeks of globe trotting, our favorite backwoods hoodrat has whittled it down to four lucky guys: Sean Lowe, Jef Holm, Arie Luyendyk, Jr. (not to be confused with this guy), and Chris Bukowski. You know what that means... hometown dates are upon us!
Of course, first Emily has to reunite with Ricki only to be like "peace, I'm outtie!," but that's a story for another bottle of white wine. So many emotions about this mother-daughter relationship, sob!
Chris Blows Emily Away in The Windy City!
We have some concerns about Emily's hometown date with Chris — mostly because he suffered a mini-mental breakdown in Prague because Em wasn't paying enough attention to him. Although that's nothing compared to the fact that Chris lives in Chicago, aka The Windy City. What is Emily's hair supposed to do with itself, hmm guys? Hmmm?
Anyway, turns out Chris and his tender heart are Polish, so after taking Em on a walking tour of Chicago, they eat dinner at a local Polish joint. And when we say "eat dinner" we mean "stare at food while talking about love." Chris once again apologizes for his freak out in Prague, and Emily instantly forgives him because she's cool like that — and she just wants to be left to stuff her purse full of perogies.
After dinner, Emily finally meets Chris' family (everyone loves her, duh), but apparently the fam think this blond bombshell might break their golden boy's' heart. In any case, Chris better buy a body pillow because he drops the L-word at the end of his date, and Emily definitely doesn't return the favor!
Emily, Get Your Gun!
OMG, you guys, it turns out that Jef is a burly mountain man who spends his free time ranchin' and cowboyin'. Who knew? Emily gets the surprise of her life when she visits Jef's family home in Utah, only to find that her number-one crush is a hipster cowboy. These love birds spend the afternoon touring the ranch and shooting targets (that's right, Jef knows how to use a gun), and then they cuddle on a random hay bale in the middle of a field.
Emily has a fabulous time getting to know Jef's husky side, but when she meets his family, her nerves take over. Don't forget that Jef broke up with the last gal his parents didn't like, so the pressure is on! But no fear, gang, Emily impresses Jef's enormous extended fam-fam to no end, and now it's time to join hands and witness the most romantic moment in Bachelorette history.
Jef decides to take Emily into the wilds of Utah to hang out next to a flowering cactus, where he reads her a handwritten letter that includes the line "I love the way you grab my hand and hold it." Oh, and he also wants to "show Ricki how to fall in love," but we'll forget about that part because we're kinda busy tattooing a picture of Jef's face on our lower back.
Arie Gets Emily's Motor Running
In case Arie's obsession with manscaping and elbow patches has addled your memory, dude is a professional race car driver. Um, move over, Jef Holm. In the words of Arrested Development's Tobias Funke: "I just blew myself."
Arie invites Emily to take a spin in his sweet ride, and after giggling with glee, the happy couple picnic on some grass and head home to meet his family. But wait. Did we mention that Arie's family is European? We know, right? Total culture clash. Unfortunately, Arie's mom and pops are on-the-fence about their son's potential bride-to-be, so they start talking about Emily in some crazy Euro language called Dutch (huh?) and majorly hurt her feelings.
Arie's mom is concerned that he's dating a self-described "hoodrat," so she sits Emily down for a girl talking session, and they totally get their bond on. Phew, what a load off. Oh also, we have a major crush on Arie's dad, Arie Luyendyk, Sr. And not just because he looks like Joe Lando circa Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman.
Sean Shocks Emily With a Secret!
The higher the hair, the closer to God, y'all! It's time for Sean's much-anticipated hometown date in Dallas, and things definitely do not go as planned. Sean and Emily spend a wonderful morning picnicking in the park and gathering wild flowers, and he knocks her socks off when he comes clean about his last failed relationship — but dude has a secret. He lives at his parents' house with a collection of stuffed animals named Whiskers, Buddy, MooMoo, and Froggy. That's right, Sean might have an unhealthy addiction to plush toys.
Oh wait, never mind — Sean is just joking! What a prankster! In other news, we're convinced that this boy's a virgin. Mostly because he won't stop talking about his reluctance to "give himself" to women.
The Rose Ceremony
Well, Emily is a hot mess. Poor girl just can't handle the pressure of sending one of her hunks home, so she partakes in yet another therapeutic bonding session with Chris Harrison. Luckily, Chris is able to sooth Emily's heart with his beautiful musings, and she realizes that it's time for baby Chris Bukowski to leave the love nest, spread his wings, and bitterly fly away. So long, superstud!