Brad is reunited with his family in South Africa and starts crying uncontrollably, unable to contain himself enough to sit down. I chuckle when I see Brad’s twin brother Chad because all I can remember is Brad’s first season when he tricked the girls by having his twin take his place, pretending to be him. Good stuff.
Brad says he’s falling in love and is 100% considering proposing. His family feigns dramatic shock and emphasizes how much of a new man he is.
Chantal arrives first. She tells the story of how they fell in love in Costa Rica in the pouring rain running back to the hotel room to…uh, well, just talk for hours…
Wes thinks Chantal clicks with the family and that she’s very attractive and vibrant. Wes and Chad get some alone time and they tell her that Brad said he is planning on proposing.
Mom asks what everyone wants to know: “how could you fall in love so quick?” Chantal says it’s easy to fall in love because of what she went through in her divorce working to find herself, now knowing what and who she wants is what led her to a place where it was easy to fall in love with Brad because he’s everything she wants and needs.
That seems to get the stamp of approval from mom.
Brad says he wasn’t nervous about Chantal but he is a bit on edge about them meeting Emily because of her past. I did notice that Emily didn’t get hugs but Wes explains that Emily seems much more reserved than Chantal. Then again later Wes, as a parent himself, is concerned about how much it would affect Emily and her daughter to move to Austin.
It gets really emotional around the table as questions unfold in a natural way about how Ricki’s father would feel about Emily and Ricki moving to Texas. Emily shares her story and there are tears welling up in everyone’s eyes, with a new found respect for Emily and what she’s been through to get here.
Brad reassures his brothers that he welcomes the opportunity to be a father. His brothers are surprised. Wes says “I left this place yesterday feeling like my brother was ready to be a husband and now I realize that he’s also ready to be a full blown father.”
Mom pulls Emily aside and tells her how much she respects her for being hesitant about letting Brad meet her daughter and also for allowing him to. Emily expresses her gratitude in meeting Brad and how much of a blessing he’s been to her even in this short time together. Mom loses it when Emily tells her that Brad is her angel. She knows Emily has had a very difficult time so Brad’s mom is rooting for her, hoping she’ll have a happy ending.
As for the brothers, I know they are on Team Emily too. I can see the restraint in Chad’s face because he totally wants to blurt out “she’s way hotter, dude!” …trust me. I can see it in his eyes.
Mom gives her vote on Emily. Brad says if his mom could pick a woman for him it would be Emily. At this point it’s in the bag.
On his date day with Chantal Brad says his family thinks Emily is the one but he’s looking for Chantal to show him she’s the one today. It’s totally over and I know it when she goes barreling towards him and tries to jump in his arms and he is struggling. Not romantic, and quite frankly, kinda scary. As my smart friend Matt Prince stated so eloquently on Facebook yesterday, “No matter what decision Brad makes tonight he will be dealing with 50 unexpected lbs…for Emily it’s her daughter, for Chantal it’s the weight she’s gained since the first episode.” It’s true. It also may explain why Brad chose to take Chantal swimming with the sharks. Either he knew they’d go for her meaty body first or he wanted her covered up in a wet suit. Just like with the snorkeling on their first one on one date, he took her to face her fears and she overcame them for him.
Chantal gives Brad a map she made showing all the places they’ve been – she says it shows that she has traveled the world for his love. She also wrote him a mushy love letter – front and back (but not 18 pages, a la Rachel Green). Brad says it was very sweet. Chantal says she needs Brad to tell her he loves her. He calls it a night and never said the “L” word so she’s desperately holding onto hope that she’ll hear it the next time they see each other.
Brad’s family chose Emily and he says he is still exploring his feelings with Emily – he needs to feel confident at the end of today. He takes Emily to the Cape of Good Hope via helicopter, naturally. It’s really windy and I’m pretty sure every guy in America forced into watching The Bachelor is sitting on the edge of the couch, eagerly hoping for the wind to blow her short shirtdress up. He tells her that his family really loved her and Emily realizes that she is letting her insecurities get the best of her and it’s all downhill from there. What seems to be the most serious, real conversation they have and should be having is going disastrously. Brad seems upset that she’s looking for the reassurance that he’s actually thought about what it will take to become a stepfather. Brad makes it very clear that he wants to be Ricki’s dad and Emily comes back with a lot of warnings that being a parent isn’t always fun or glamorous. Brad is very frustrated. He asks Emily if she’s ready to let somebody in. She says “not somebody, but you.” It seems as if his anger is getting the best of him so now he’s trying to push the blame onto her for these hesitant feelings. Emily knows her head is sabotaging her heart and Brad walks away defeated from his night with Emily.
Neil Lane arrives the next morning with the rings for Brad to choose from. Brad picks out a stunning sparkler of rock with a split shank band.
Brad is very confident, excited, scared, and happy about being in love. The clue to his choosing Emily is when he says he knows he’s in love and he just hopes she loves him back. I think everyone in America is confident that Chantal loves Brad.
Chantal, it appears, is doomed to be the first girl out of the limo yet again. And yeah, that’s sad and all, but all I can think is “Chunky gold shoes with that dress? Really?”
Brad gives his “you’re so great” speech and then transitions into the “here’s where it gets tough” part and explains that he has stronger feelings for someone else and immediately the tears fly. Brad tries to reassure her by asking “are you alright?” which at this moment in time is probably the worst thing he could ask. No, Brad, no she’s not alright. I wish that Chris Harrison would’ve popped out just to say that. Would’ve been perfect! Brad continues to tell Chantal that the connection they had was very real and she didn’t do anything wrong. I think Brad might have to call Chantal’s dad and break up with him too. If you’ll remember, they too had quite the connection. Chantal wonders how she could have felt Brad was The One when Brad didn’t even love her. Someone get this woman a gallon of Ben & Jerry’s, stat!
Now that the sad part is over, Brad is all smiles when he sees Emily walking toward him. It takes him quite a while to get out his rehearsed speech, telling her about a promise he made to himself to take a leap of faith if he found even just a glimpse of love. He says, “And all it took for me was coming here and finding you. You’re it; you’re The One. You’re so much more than a leap of faith. You’re my once in a lifetime.”
And his proposal went like this:
Please give me your forever.
Please let me be your best friend.
Please let me protect you and your beautiful daughter,
And please give me the opportunity to love you for the rest of your life.
I love you, Emily.
(on bended knee)
Please make me happier than I’ve ever been in my life and marry me.”
And she says “I’d love to!” and has to do the awkward bend at the waist to kiss him. She straightens up and he puts the ring on her finger. She says she loves it and it’s perfect. Cue the montage of their love story unfolded in Bachelor episode clips to the tune of Train’s “Marry Me.”
So, what did you think? Were you rooting for Chantal? Did you know it would be Emily? How do you feel about them not really dealing with the real issues of what their life will be like together as a family with a daughter?