I have to admit, TV watchers, I was a little trepidatious about episode five. The Bachelor is fueled by crazy, and without it, the show is as weak as Superman in a room full of Kryptonite. So after Megan, Lauren and Tooth Nazi unceremoniously got the boot last week, would Jason's ''journey'' still be worth watching? As it turns out, yes — but not for the reasons I expected. The five remaining ''ladies'' aren't nearly as nutty as the Troika of Terror, but Jason himself has stepped it up in the baffling behavior department, and that — plus an assist this week by Stephanie's increasingly wacky, age-inappropriate wardrobe — is keeping this ''journey'' entertainingly absurd.
The ''ladies'' roll out of bed to meet Harrison in the living room, and he informs them that ''everything is about to change.'' Well, not everything — just the location: We're all going to Seattle! (Cue screaming.) Melissa is excited because ''one of us is going to be moving there and starting our life there.'' I know Jason stays in Seattle because of Ty, but I love how there isn't even any lip service paid to the idea that maybe the Bachelor would be the one to uproot his life and move to his fiancée's hometown — that would be silly, right? It's not like any of these ''ladies'' have ''careers'' or ''friends'' or ''family'' or ''identities outside of being someone's girlfriend/wife/chippy on the side.''
But my cynicism is washed away in an instant when all of us a sudden we see... TY! He's hanging out in the park with Jason's sister-in-law (I'm guessing Ty's mom would rather hack off her own foot and eat it than take part in Jason's ''journey''). Awww, we missed you, little buddy! Go give your daddy a hug! Excuse me... I need a minute... There's something in my eye... Okay, I'm back. So Jason's hanging out at home — and even though Molly later refers to it as ''his actual home,'' I refuse to believe that it's his real house, because it is practically identical to Tom Hanks' houseboat-thingy in Sleepless in Seattle, right down to the dock-style front walkway. ABC has been marketing this as The Bachelor: Sleepless in Seattle Comes to Life since Day One, so why wouldn't they make him pretend to live in a houseboat? Plus, ABC's legal department had to be worried that if they showed Jason's real house on TV, Raquel would track him down and tie him to the bed Misery-style until he agreed to become her husband.
When the ''ladies'' arrive at their swank hotel, Jason's waiting for them bearing a date card, which he nonchalantly pulls from his back pocket and hands to Melissa. ''I'll be back at 7:30 to pick you up,'' he tells her. (That's a little odd, since no one on The Bachelor ever mentions the time of day. It's almost as though the producers want us to remember that Jason's due back at a certain time... like they know in advance that something might prevent him from getting there when he's supposed to... Maybe I'm overthinking this...)
Anyhow, Naomi is pissed that she did not get the one-on-one date yet again. And she'd be really livid if she knew how super amazingly romantic the evening's going to be. Says Jason, ''We're going to start off at the Space Needle, have a really romantic dinner, and then I've got a helicopter waiting and we're going to take off to a beautiful waterfall not too far away.'' (Hmmm, that's odd, too. Since when does Jason give us a description of what he's got planned for the date before it happens? Don't the producers usually like us to be surprised along with the ''ladies''? They sure are working hard to convince us that Melissa's date is going to be really fancy...)
NEXT PAGE: Melissa cleans up Jason's mess