I hope by now you’ve heard the great news that the finale for this season will be a three-hour event — including the live After the Final Rose special — airing Sunday, July 22nd. The next day, Monday July 23rd will be the premiere of Bachelor Pad 3. We’re in production on Pad right now and it’s amazing. But before we jump too far forward let’s talk about the hometown dates and how Emily is holding up as we head down the home stretch here. After some incredible travel around the world we were all happy to be back in the good ol’ USA. The first stop on the hometown dates was with Chris in Chicago. The minute you saw Chris and Emily together you could tell there was just something a little off about them and their usual chemistry. Is it just me or did Chris’ dad kind of accidentally set his son up for the fall by telling him Emily said she was falling in love with Chris, when it turns out she never really said anything close to that? Chris is twenty-five years young. Now, that’s only a year younger than Emily but they are really in different places in their life. It didn’t really seem in the end that Chris is ready to provide what Emily is looking for, especially when you stack him up against the three other men remaining.
After Chicago, Emily flew over to St George, Utah to see Jef and his family. Emily summed this scene up best when she said who knew that Jef (and his skinny jeans) has so much country in him? Unlike with Chris, the chemistry here was amazing. It’s funny to see how nervous Emily gets around Jef and how much she really wants to impress him. Jef’s letter was beyond romantic and it really blew Emily away. To be honest she was blown away by the entire visit with Jef. His family really loved her and it seemed like she really fit in. After such an easy date in Utah with Jef, Emily had a bit of a rough start in Scottsdale with Arie and his family. The date started off on the right track… sorry just have to throw in those cheesy Bachelorette lines every now and then. Arie took Emily along for a ride in his two-seat IndyCar. Emily loves the track and loves cars but knows nothing about IndyCars. She really enjoyed being there and seeing Arie in his element.
Arie’s hometown is a great example of why I love these dates so much. His family is Dutch and it took a bit for everybody to warm up and feel each other out. After a while they all did hit it off and by the end the family seemed to love Emily as much as Arie does. I really enjoyed the talk between the two Aries. Listening to Arie talk to his dad you could really see they have an amazing relationship. At the end of the date Arie made it a perfect three for three of guys that expressed their love for her. Sean broke that streak in Dallas but he was more than clear about how much he’s feeling for her right now. The more time Emily spends with Sean the more impressed she is with him. The practical jokes Sean and his family played on Emily were funny. She really fell for it when he was telling her how he lived at home.
Sean really took a huge step up after their date in London and ever since then their relationship seems to be growing by leaps and bounds. There was never a doubt in my mind that Sean, Jef and Arie would be her final three guys. She’s some ways she’s actually falling for all three of these guys right now and that’s what led to a very serious deliberation and rose ceremony. By the time I met Emily for deliberation at the Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills she wasn’t herself. She was on edge and it seemed the weight of the situation was finally getting to her. The fact that she has three great men falling for her and she’s feeling so much in return really made her feel like time was running out a little too fast. Not only is she worried about how she’s going to say goodbye to these guys but, she’s wondering how she could be possibly be feeling so much for so many of them. While this is an embarrassment of riches for Emily I think deep down she was hoping at this point she really would have had this figured out and she could just sail to the finish line.
The way things have gone and the way these guys have stepped up Emily has her work cut out for her in the weeks to come and there are heartbreaking decisions ahead. Emily has done a fantastic job of narrowing it down to three really good men. Now it’s a matter of trying to figure out who really fits in to her life best. I can’t remember a season where we’ve had so many of our fans divided on who they think is best for Emily. I’ve seen a lot of support for all three and I think that just shows why Emily is struggling as well. We have some great weeks ahead as we head off to the beautiful island of Curacao to wrap this up. I look forward to talking to you this week via Twitter @chrisbharrison, and you can always keep up with the latest Bachelorette news on our official website www.thebachelor.tv.
More Bachelorette from EW:
Bachelorette episode 8 recap: Relative success
Check out Emily’s blog on people.com