The burning question about Demi, for her fellow "Bachelor" contestants, was: "Does she not have parents?" Yes, that's right -- dear readers -- we have a new villain!
Good news, Bachelor Nation -- if Colton Underwood's career as a well-chiseled philanthropist looking for love on network television doesn't pan out, he could always work the kissing booth at the Indiana State Fair.
"The Bachelor" returned Monday night with its second installment and Colton was tasked with thinning down the herd of women lusting after him to a slightly more manageable number. While this season's unlucky-in-love-but-extremely-lucky-in-genetics protagonist did take an interest in several contestants, the interest mostly seemed limited to finding out what flavor lip gloss they were rocking by going in for a smooch.
That's right, Colton is a make-out bandit. By our count, he stole kisses from six different women this week with one of them coming back for seconds. There's nothing wrong with smooching quasi-strangers, of course, but we're surprised a man best known for having never slid into Homeplate has somehow managed to hit this many singles in one night.
Also, if he's truly looking for a lifelong partner, it might help to learn a little more about the women's hopes, dreams, passions and backgrounds. But we digress.
Feels Like the First Time
Colton and a cadre of lady companions -- Demi, Bri, Tracy, Elyse, Hannah G, Nicole, Onyeka, Catherine—visited L.A.'s vintage Regent Theater for the season's first group date. Under the tutelage of guest stars and power couple Nick Offerman and Megan Mullaly, the group took the stage and shared stories of their "firsts" in front of a packed house.
Colton went first and delivered a Rose Red Flag of his own, opening up about the first time he came clean in the locker room and told his teammates he was still a virgin. The story was sweet, but how many times can this guy return to the Virgin Well before his suitors run dry? He's never had sex before. Fine. But surely Colton must have something else to offer, right?
The ladies' "firsts" were equally unremarkable and ran the gamut from mundane to downright freaky. Nicole, a Miami native who usually prefers Cuban men, identified Colton as the first white man she's ever dated while Tracy, a 31-year-old stylist, shared a bizarre story about lusting after a different virgin which ended with her getting punched in the face.
Demi, meanwhile, didn't even try and cobble together a halfway coherent story. Instead, the walking, talking Rose Red Flag jumped off the stage, ran to Colton in the front row and kissed him good. Colton was shocked but feeling it while several of the other girls were predictably annoyed.
The group went out for a nightcap later and Demi showed more moxie by being the first girl to pull Colton aside for some one-on-one time. He admitted he liked her, uhh, "confidence," and it wasn't long before the two kissed again.
Demi taunted the other girls afterward by playing with the rose Colton had laid out on their table. Tracy wasn't having it, telling the cameras "it made me slightly sick to my stomach." And thus a rivalry was born.
Speaking of sick, let's hope no one has mono because the kissing did not let up. Elyse, a makeup artist from Alaska who's also one of the only girls on the show old enough to have lived through the Cold War, stole Colton away next. "Age doesn't define anything," he told her, though we all know the older ladies always seem to get sent home early, right? Then the two kissed.
Colton eventually got around to talking to Hannah G., last week's recipient of his First Impression Rose. It's clear he's still enamored, but what really sticks out about their interactions is the voice he slips into when trying to sweet-talk her--it sounds like he's reading a bedtime story to a baby.
His conversations with the other gals were about as memorable as a Wednesday afternoon in August, and he ultimately gave the night's first rose to Elyse after praising her for being open and honest -- about her age, we guess.
For his first one-on-one date, Colton took Hannah B. horseback riding for her birthday.
The bubbly, agreeable blonde was ecstatic to celebrate her special day with a man she's known for a week and desperately wants to marry, but sadly their date did not go according to plan. As the day wore, she in fact turned into a stone-cold bore.
At one point, Colton asked her to come up with a toast while they drank champagne and Hannah B. was literally unable to articulate a sentence. The Alabama beauty queen just muttered a bunch of nonsense and capped it off with a "Roll Tide." Their conversation grew more stilted after the pair slinked into a hot tub together. It's unclear if she was nervous about spending quality time with Colton or if her brain just doesn't work on her birthday, but the poor girl had nothing to say and looked like she was about to cry.
She finally emerged from her shell after the sun went down and the two wined and dined on the Queen Mary. His virginity once again came up and Hannah B. revealed she regretted giving hers away when she did … and that seemed to be all Colton needed to hear as he offered her a rose right there on the spot. She accepted and they kissed passionately on the deck of the ship as literal fireworks exploded in the night sky behind them.
"I absolutely do see myself falling in love with Colton and I see a real future with him," the birthday girl told the cameras, seemingly unaware she nearly blew her chance at a rose earlier in the day.
After horseback riding, hot tubbing and hanging out with more blonde Hannahs from Alabama than most men will know in a lifetime, it was time for Colton to spend a day at a "summer camp" with the leftover ladies in desperate need of an opportunity to impress him before the rose ceremony.
For this adventure, the group enlisted the help of Billy Eichner, who delivered some hilarious lines while Colton wore a t-shirt showing off his man nipples. The ladies were split into two teams which competed in everything from wheelbarrow races to tug-of-war to see who would return to the mansion and who would spend the night with Colton at camp.
Heather, Alex, Katie, Tayshia, Caelynn and Cassie's team emerged victorious and soon enough Colton was seducing them all by a campfire. Caelynn won sympathy points after revealing she contracted encephalitis at the age of two and Katie kissed Colton for the second time in two weeks, but otherwise there wasn't much to see beyond Heather's big revelation.
Heather blew Colton's mind when she told him she had never been kissed. While the 22-year-old SoCal native was terrified her inexperience might turn him off, he took the news in stride and said he respected her courage to come forward. Maybe it's because he's relieved to finally be the "experienced" one in a relationship, but Heather got the only rose at camp.
With all three dates in the books, Colton and the ladies gathered in the mansion for one last cocktail party before the season's second rose ceremony. It was a golden opportunity for dark horse contenders like Sydney, an NBA dancer, and Courtney, a dutiful older sister ("I'm very mom-like, without any children") to finally make a lasting impression.
But those girls didn't stay in the spotlight for long. Onyeka interrupted one private session with an airhorn and a terrible pun: "I'm honestly feeling a little bit horny," she told Colton with desperation in her eyes.
Demi took it one step further and strolled through the sea of suitors in her bathrobe on a quest to find Colton. "Does she not have parents?" Caitlin remarked as Demi walked by. "Like, I'm just confused."
Demi then barged in on a serious conversation between Colton and Tracy. Before Tracy could even figure out what was happening, Colton was excitedly following the Texan up the stairs and into her "fantasy closet," where she gave him what turned out to be a rose-worthy massage.
Tracy stormed off crying while the rest of the ladies just stood there watching, mouths agape in disbelief.
"I think it's hilarious that Tracy came into this thinking she was going to be the most mature one here, and she's up there crying," Demi told the cameras.
"Tonight, I have to follow my heart. If you don't receive a rose tonight, I'm sorry, and I appreciate you all," Colton said before handing out the rest of the evening's roses and sending off four sad women to update their Bumble profiles.
Demi's confidence paid dividends as she was one of the first women to receive a rose while Tracy again seemed on the verge of tears while awaiting her fate. Thankfully, Colton gave her the last rose of the night and her deliciously bitter feud with Demi will live to entertain us another day.
Who went home? Angelique, a 28-year-old marketing salesperson from New Jersey, Annie, a 23-year-old financial associate from New York, Alex B., the contestant named Alex who didn't wear a sloth costume, and Erika, the woman who gave Colton a bag of peanuts.
Here are more quick hits and stray observations from Monday's episode of "The Bachelor":
Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang: It's becoming increasingly clear Colton is a player, so we're going to tally each week's hookups.
Biggest Let Down: Hannah B. lost much of her mojo this week, but the biggest disappointment was Catherine who barely registered just one episode after making a strong case to be the season-long villain.
Creepiest Line of the Night: "Alright, I'm serving the shuttlecock. Here we go." -- Colton at camp.
Current Frontrunner: It's anyone's game, but our new favorite is Elyse who managed to snag the evening's first rose despite (1) going up against last week's First Impression Rose winner in Hannah G. and (2) coming clean about being old enough to be Colton's hot babysitter.
Rose-Budding Storylines: In addition to Tracy vs. Demi and the countdown to Heather's first kiss, Bachelor Nation should keep an eye on whatever's going on between Hannah B. and Caelynn, two beauty queens with a shared past who seem to secretly despise one another. What exactly happened on the pageant circuit last summer? Did one basically assume the other's life after she faked her own death by killing her long lost twin sister in order to get the life insurance money? No, no that's the plot of "A Simple Favor" (sorry for the spoiler). But seriously, something happened between the two of them.
Tune in next week, perhaps we'll find out together!