As if The Bachelorette's Ashley Hebert didn't have enough reasons to cry this season (and all of them start with "Bentley"), the producers went for the equivalent of shoving her face in the mud tonight by tasking her suitors with a Friar's Club-style roast on the group date.
Things started off mildly enough, with the dashing Ryan P. falling flat with a joke about why Bentley was still there and most of the guys just ripping on each other. But then the seemingly kind of sheepish Will.i.am, who's actually been on a solo date with Ashley, who tore right into her with, "So beautiful, so gorgeous, so used..."
And it was all downhill from there.
"Didn't know there'd be ppl in the audience??? This roasting thing just got a WHOLE lot worse. C'mon...who is coming up w/ the dates?!" tweeted none other than O.G. Bachelorette Trista Sutter, the only one to be successful at this game to date, after watching the episode.
After stoically putting up with jokes about her small bust and the guys' disappointment that she wasn't either Chantal or Emily, douche royale Bentley was the one who spotted her crying in the corner.
"I'm not going to pass up the opportunity to mess with her head," he told the cameras later. "I hate it when people cry. It's not that attractive."
"Of 25 guys, I promise you, at least 24 of them were really excited it was you," Bentley told her, having already admitted in an aside that he, for one, was disappointed not to see another one of Brad Womack's finalists standing there.
"For some reason, with Bentley being there, I just felt better," Ashley admitted later (to her detriment, as it turns out). "I love the way he thinks. He's just a real guy and that's what I'm looking for...There can be alternate agendas, but with him, I don't feel like he has one."
In an unexpected twist, however, after Ashley confronted Bentley with the fact that "a friend" (who turned out to be last season's she-wolf Michelle Money, of all people!) tipped her off to his less-than-honorable plan to spend a few weeks there to promote his business and split, the single dad decided it was time to skedaddle.
"These tools, these friggin' idiots…They believe me," Bentley scoffed at his fellow contestants, who gave him props for following his heart. (The only thing the guys were wrong about, really, was the existence of the aforementioned heart.)
"[Staying] is not an option for me," he admitted to the cameras, "so I'm going to make Ashley cry. I hope my hair looks OK."
"I don't know if this is going to work for me now," Ashley cried as he broke the fake news to her (the fake part being that he gave a damn, of course).
Good riddance, dude!
At least she gave the dreamy Ryan P. the group date rose and then had a really sweet one-on-one date with J.P.
"Tonight is about me and Ashley," J.P. said in what sounded like a foreign language after an hour full of Bentley's B.S.
Sadly, she went into the rose ceremony saying, "I'm emotionally drained and heartbroken. Last week I saw my husband in the room, and this week I don't know what I see anymore. Bentley was my guy."
Host and voice of sanity Chris Harrison tried his best to make her see the light, that a guy who really wanted to be there would have moved heaven and earth to stay, and it sort of worked.
Ashley nixed the night's cocktail party, having already bestowed safety on Ryan P., J.P. and Ben C., but dutifully doled out nine more roses to Constantine, West, Mickey, Ben F., Blake, Nick, Ames, Lucas and—in a slight twist—William, who gets another shot at being a gentleman after proving himself the worst roaster of all time.
Meaning, Jeff finally took off his mask—he was perfectly cute underneath, of course—and got nothing in return.
Do you think Bentley's departure has ruined Ashley's ability to find happiness with one of these other guys? Or will she finally get a clue and realize she dodged a bullet? Share your thoughts on tonight's creeptastic episode in the comments section!
(Originally published June 6, 2011, at 7:30 p.m. PT)