The Bachelorette recap: Close to Home

Andi's meet-cutes with the parents are overshadowed at the last minute by some sad news about "one of their own."
Ep. 08 | Aired Jul 7, 2014

THE AWFUL TRUTH: Andi gets the news from Harrison that Eric Hill died after a paragliding accident.

Perhaps she should be worried. Aaron is clearly king of that family—first he gives the toast at dinner (come on, dad!), and then he immediately launches into his adventures at "pro day," which is apparently something to do with the NFL. Andi does NOT love it. "I also want to make sure that the family is excited for Josh, too," she complains disingenuously. Sorry, that's incorrect. Why are you really pouting, toots? "Part of me feels like there is this expectation that if I end up with Josh, every Sunday is going to be spent at Aaron's games." That is correct! Still, the Bachelorette feigns enthusiasm for the pigskin-groupie lifestyle, assuring Josh's dad Dennis that she'd "love" to spend her weekends traveling to football stadiums across the country.

Josh, who wept with emotion upon reuniting with his family, starts tearing up again during a heart-to-heart with his mother when she says, "You know, Josh, you have put you last for so long. I want this for you." Seeing how overwhelmed the big lug is by that statement—which resonates as a tacit acknowledgement that he'll always feel like the No. 2 son in his parents' eyes—is honestly a little heartbreaking.

All right, shake it off Baldwin! We've got one more date to go. Welcome to Dallas, rose lovers. Marcus picks Andi up at her hotel and drives her to... a strip club, for a romantic re-enactment of their first (group) date. Wait, what? Isn't this supposed to be the "let's enjoy the Chamber of Commerce-approved sights of the city" portion of the date? Performing a one-man strip tease in an empty nightclub seems like an odd welcome to your hometown, Marcus—unless Dallas is so drab you felt the need to create your own scenic vista. The good news is, Andi LOVES it ("I mean, he is hawt")—but the bad news is the Bachelorette still hasn't figured out whether her feelings can "catch up" to Marcus' undying love for her.

Speaking of which, Andi and Marcus' sister Cathy have an interesting conversation about his penchant for "overcaring," which Cathy attributes to his role as the "caretaker" during their tumultuous upbringing. "Does that bug you sometimes in a way?" sis asks Andi, who admits that she does "worry" a bit about Marcus' fire hose of feelings. Halina, meanwhile, finds it a bit "shocking" when Andi reveals how open Marcus has been about his past—which is the Bachelorette's coded way of saying I know you weren't Mother of the Year, betch. Whatever happened in the past, Halina and Marcus seem to have a strong bond now. "I love you, I trust your judgment, and I'm proud of you," mom tells Marcus, wrapping him in a hug. Good God, am I getting misty again? We haven't even gotten to Eric yet!

So, let's get to it. Andi and the suitors must have known it was serious when they were summoned to Chris Harrison's home on April 23. They assemble in the host's living room and fidget nervously as Harrison informs them that once the Bachelorette arrives, "we'll tell everybody at once." Their minds are clearly racing—Did ABC cancel the show? Did Andi decide she likes women? Oh crap, is she pregnant?—but no, the news is more upsetting than any worst case scenario they could have imagined.

NEXT: "I kicked him out!"

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