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The Bachelorette: Emily and the Package Deal 4

Episode 4!

This week, the tension is thick. The men are set up for competition, and they start to determine who's "there for the right reasons."

It's a brilliant twist that no man could ever truly understand: Each one must prove that his reasons are "right" by winning without competing. Compete actively and openly, your alienation of the other souls reads as cruel, ugly, unseemly. Fail to win -- openly competing or no -- and you don't care enough, you're "not there for Emily."

Best of all, the whole crew's off to Bermuda (Ricki included of course)! It's the first place Emily gets to prematurely sentimentalize as she envisions her future with husband and babies...pushing a pram along the beach.

Of the suitors, Travis (the egg guy?) is straggling at the start of this week - he hasn't "had some of the time ...that these other guys have," so he's clearly missing his chance to make a more intimate impression.

Daddy Doug wins the one-on-one date -- "let our senses lead the way" -- and his lack of certainty about returning with the rose brings the dogs out, Arie leading the pack. Emily sniffs the tension, and Doug's version of the pre-date drama charms Emily enough to lean her head against his shoulder. Poor Dougy, he gets the I'm-probably-gonna-dump-you-at-the-end-of-this-date shopping excursion amongst the locals, which is especially laughable cause Bermuda's so chock full of tourist traps, they really could be back in Charlotte, strolling around with 6 kids and a pair of frappuccinos.

At dinner, Emily is skeptical - can Doug possibly be as perfect as he appears? His dutiful daddyiness inspires her doubts, but when he puts her on the spot, she's "uncomfortable," and decides maybe Doug's "just that perfect of a person." But at the crucial kiss moment, Doug dredges up grandpa and Emily looks petulant. No man's done the she-has-to-make-the-first-move thing and moved on for too long, so unless Doug can get it up, it's likely he'll be getting axed in a week or two.

The group date -- let's set sail on the sea of love -- is anticipated more because it narrows down the candidates forced to be on the infamous two-on-one date. As if they couldn't guess, the guys are going sailing! Teams are chosen and the course is set, and the surprising results send the football players packing, Ryan captaining the motley crew -- Arie, Jef, and Kalon -- to victory. (Oddly, Kalon the rich kid looks just as clueless as the nerds and the jocks...what kind of a rich kid is he?) At the climax of the race, Emily confides to us: "To be honest, I hate to watch guys compete." But she looks forward to a more intimate group at the evening party.

The losers head home, with Emily's sympathy, at least.

At the party, Arie's the first to jump at alone time, and the couple "can't wait to spend more time," and, evidently, make out. Jef's up second, and finally "starts to open up," though Emily nearly flubs her attempt to coach him subtly. He should have attempted a kiss, doesn't, and Emily looks on the bright side of holding off. Ryan's convinced that, "as the Bachelorette, she's been given a great responsibility," and thank god he's here, because, he wants to make sure she'll "do a lot with it." Fortunately, Emily confronts his sensational arrogance...and ends up being as titillated by it as he intends for her to be..bringin' her southern out.

And then OUT OF NOWHERE, they're having this fourth wall breaking conversation -- Emily's "not just any Bachelorette," and should be playing herself as a role model for young women. Basically it boils down to Ryan covertly calling her a slut for kissing Arie at last week's rose ceremony. She's graciously apologetic about "throwing it in [his] face," but her interview clips belie a deeper frustration. Jef gets the date rose, and Ryan continues to talk about "the depth" between them as evidenced by Emily's political savvy (and his recognition of it? whatever he thinks they're in on together, it's clear the production team is not into his penchant for meta game play analysis).

Meanwhile, the four left at home -- Doug, recovering from their romance, no doubt, Alejandro, Mike, John and Nate -- dread the arrival of the two-on-one date card. Predictably, the back-of-the-pack John "Wolf" and "Last Rose" Nate are selected. The men are invited (cautioned?) to -- "explore this Bermuda triangle" -- on the date that all three parties are dreading. In interviews before the date though, Emily resorts to terrible cliches about anticipated heartbreak, and neither of the guys can look into the camera when they say Emily's name. (Maybe they should all go home?) By the dinner portion of the date, it's clear that the suitors have held up admirably, and Emily (as always) is brave and cheerful in the face of finality. She sends tearful young Nate home, with "I just can't see us together forever," and he's a respectable gentleman all the way out the door.

At the pre-rose ceremony party, the tension among the suitors starts to come to a head: the scuttlebutt is that Ryan, who's "confident about everything" is going home, but Ryan just feels "sorry for 'em," and makes such an obvious ploy for the spot of Bachelor-to-be, it's easy to sympathize with the rest of the guys. Arie's become more and more enamored. What he's got with Emily is "real," and Emily seems to agree - telling him "you're the person that I think of" when alone. Their finger-kneee flirtation is a little intrusive. Meanwhile, the gorillas have been rubbing chests: Doug & Ryan pull the you're-too-young-to-handle-it card, and Chris is really miffed; when he throws down the fake card in a tete-a-tete with Doug's unruffledness, he's easily out-smoothed.

Emily & Chris Harrison's prep-talk is unusually candid. Emily "never wants to hurt anybody," so she still struggles with letting them go. Thunder, long looks, and nodding heads punctuate the ritual, as Mike and Charlie go home, tearfully.

And they're off to London!

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