The Bachelor really cranked up the absurdity this week, with girls skiing in San Francisco in bikinis, a contestant leaving voluntarily, one from last season inexplicably returning only to be rejected the same night, one fainting during the rose ceremony (!) and more.
In the end, Ben Flajnik narrowed the field to 15 women, with the rest of us wondering what lengths this awesomely terrible "reality" show will go to next.
Follow this link for The Bachelor spoilers we know so far to see what we think comes next, then join us for THG's +/- Bachelor recap of week three ...
BEST SKI TRIP EVER: Kudos to the story editors for conceptualizing this one.
Lindzi, Kacie, Courtney, Emily and Jennifer get mentions when Ben talks to his nice sister Julia about the journey so far. Sorry, other dozen girls! Plus 12.
For reasons unbeknownst to human kind, Ben thinks his sis would hit it off with Courtney. Doesn't he know his own sister? Isn't Julia normal? Minus 15.
Emily gets the first date card which says that "love lifts us up." Cue obligatory climbing / skydiving / bungee jumping date and associated metaphors! Plus 5.
It actually is! They are climbing the Bay Bridge! Plus 8.
We realize sharing an intense experience is a great way to get to know someone, but they seriously recycle the same cliches every single season. Minus 4.
The girls spy on them via telescope. That's classic. Plus 7.
Ben stops to give a petrified Emily a kiss and the courage to go on. Plus 6 for the Top Gun reference ("Talk to me, Goose!") and for being a good guy.Okay, Em. A little much with the bridge metaphor. Minus 9.
At dinner, Ben says he would love a woman who is smarter than he is, which he thinks Emily is. What a self-assured, grounded guy he's being. Plus 10.
Group date time for Blakeley, Jaclyn, Kacie, Erika, Samantha, Jamie, Monica, Rachel, Nicki, Elyse and Casey S., whose name was held back for suspense. Plus 6.
Monica is this season's Vienna Girardi. The girl is loud as hell and loves to show off her breasts. She may have even been topless in a confessional. Plus 8.
Kacie B. is super cute, even if she's terrible at skiing. Most of the rest of the girls make this date look really skanky, but she's super cute! Plus 7.
"Kacie B went down more than any of the girls," Ben says, in the most unintentionally dirty comment of the night. Plus 15 for obviousness.
Rachel attempts to inhale Ben's face at the cocktail party. Minus 9.
Kacie admits to Ben that she's jealous and that's hard for her. Aww. They kiss and are back on good terms again. She's "trouble" Ben says ... positively. Plus 5.
Blakeley whines about how people hate her. Yawn. Minus 3.
"She's the kind of the girl your boyfriend cheats on you with." - Courtney on Blakeley. Courtney, meanwhile, is the kind of girl you just want to never see again in your life. Minus 10.
Brittney gets the second date card, is pretty indifferent, then takes that as her cute to pack her stuff and peace out. Uhh, hmm? Eh, whatever. Plus 19 for Ben pretending to act surprised or as if he cares.
Somehow we don't see her returning, a la Ed. Another bet? Mike Fleiss offered 10 grand to someone who voluntarily left to make room for Shawntel.
Ben gives the rose to Rachel, because they "really connected." In the literal sense, maybe. She attempt to fuse her mouth to his throat. Minus 6.
Lindzi Cox, a.k.a. Horse Girl, gets the date instead, and what a date it is - private concert from Matt Nathanson!!! How does Ben plan such things!? Plus 8.
Minus 7, because we love Lindzi, but that Dumpsville text is so made up.
Ben Flajnik plays the piano, too? What a catch! Plus 10.
Now the good stuff. Shawntel Newton arrives and mysteriously had Chris Harrison on speed dial. Chris tells her she has to go into the cocktail party. Plus 10.
Courtney tries to stir up trouble between Elyse and Lindzi. Minus 20, because we hate girls like that, and Ben has seemed smitten by her since the first night.
And he still is. They kiss, like a lot. Every week. Minus 12.
Shawntel finally shows up and the girls flip the f--k out. Plus 13 for the fallout, but we're still a little surprised Shawntel, who we liked, would agree to this stunt.
It's just a little over the top that they come up with ways of raising the stakes and changing the rules just to stir up drama. We eat it up, but still, Minus 20.
"Who IS SHE?!" - Elyse. Plus 40 for that soundbite alone.
Apparently Shawntel and Ben have talked before, and she wants in. She tells him she's just hoping for a rose, but if he's not feeling it, that's fine. Mature. Plus 7.
Ben hopes the women are welcoming to Shawntel. LOL. Plus 25.
Courtney, Elyse, Jaclyn and Rachel don't like the rules being changed, which is fine, but get over yourselves. It's a show, and Shawntel is not a banshee. Minus 15.
She's a "bitch," "dumpster trash," "Brad's leftovers," you name it. This show is setting women back generations with every episode. Minus 15 more, losers.
Courtney again threatens to leave. Sadly she does not. Minus 11.
At the rose ceremony, Court gets one. Weak. She says she'll accept but tonight was "a lot" and brings up "whats-her-butt." Stab us in the eye. Minus 30.
Roses do to Kacie, Elyse, Jamie, Jennifer, Casey, Blakeley, Monica, Nicki, Samantha and .... then Erika is nauseous and Jaclyn starts freaking out! Plus 12.
If laughing at Erika PASSING OUT DURING THE ROSE CEREMONY is wrong, then we apologize, because we don't ever wanna be right up in here. Plus 28.
Plus 10 for Lindzi, Kacie and Casey, who are not trashing Shawntel.
Erika, Jaclyn and Shawntel remain, with one rose on the line, and NONE OF THEM GET IT! Burn. It's probably a fair decision, but poor Shawntel. Minus 14.
On her way out, Courtney interjects, "See ya!" Eff you. Minus 50.
EPISODE TOTAL: +39! SEASON TOTAL: +121!
Eliminations: Erika Uhlig and Jaclyn Swartz; Brittney and Shawntel.