This episode definitely had some unexpected twists and turns so bare with me as I navigate the episode to the best of my ability.
The 1-on-1 this week went to Ben F. which I was really happy about. Ben F. really started to grow on me last week and this week just took leaps and bounds with me. They have such a unique chemistry together and they are so incredibly comfortable together which is so great to see. They relied on each other to make the day fun and exciting which I think they succeeded at. They connected on such an emotional level, especially when Ben was talking about his dad and the struggle he's had with dealing with his grief the last few years. Ashley verbally expressed her affection and attraction to him several times (although it was only to the camera), I mean when you say things like you "just want to jump on him" and that you feel like he's been your boyfriend for years it's probably a good sign. Ben got the rose at the end of the night (which should have come as no surprise to any of you) and they finally shared the kiss that we had been waiting for the whole date.
The group date was pretty intense this week...which is to be expected since punches were involved very early on. The actual fights were pretty intense...I'm not sure why Ashley thought that it would be a good idea to put these guys against each other and have them throw punches at each other. Ashley completely freaked out when JP was getting pounded by Mickey...it was so obvious just how deep Ashley's feelings are for JP, even if she doesn't quite realize it yet. I can't not talk about Ames, I mean the guy went to the hospital so I'm pretty sure he deserves a line or two in my blog. Luckily it was just a mild concussion but he was so out of it he was actually funny! I'm still not sure whether Ames is a pushover or just a super nice guy...thoughts? I have to say that I'm surprised to see that Lucas was once again on the group date instead of getting some 1-on-1 time with Ashley but I have to say that his mini golf lesson with Ashley was absolutely adorable! That was the first time I really saw a spark between them and I really hope that we see more of that in the near future! Blake got the rose which was a tad surprising but not totally out of the blue, I did think that either Lucas or Ames would get it but I'm happy to see Blake stick around.
Then there was the dreaded 2-on-1 date with William and Ben C...I was really not happy that these two were the ones to go on this date because I like them both and didn't want to see one of them go home yet. It didn't take long for Ashley to send Ben home...some might say that it was because of what William had told her about Ben wanting to do online dating when this was over but I think Ashley was looking for a reason to send Ben home. She accepted what William said so immediately without even talking to Ben about it that there had to have been some other reason in the back of her mind to confirm her decision to send him home. Ben didn't fight it either which makes me wonder why he just accepted it so easily...did he really want to go home and was looking for a way to get out? Ashley realized by the end of the date that the spark that she so wanted to feel with William just wasn't there anymore and she made the tough decision to send him home as well. I felt so bad to see him talk about everything in his exit interview...he was so hard on himself and it just broke my heart! I really just wanted to give him a huge hug and let him know that things are going to be ok and that there is someone out there just waiting for him. He has a little growing up to do but he's close to being there and I have no doubt that he'll find someone (I am available fyi).
This week's cocktail party and rose ceremony had a strange feel to it...it was obvious to everyone that Ashley was somewhere else and was just off, what they probably don't yet realize is that it's all because of Bentley. When Ashley was talking to Constantine I couldn't help but feel like he just wasn't really into her....there's just no chemistry there and I don't think he'll be around too much longer. It's so obvious that Ashley has real feelings for JP and vice versa....she's just so afraid that he's going to hurt her like Bentley did that she's not letting herself really go there and that's not fair to her or JP. I loved how Chris Harrison really laid it out straight and didn't sugar coat it with Ashley when it came to the topic of Bentley. She really isn't being fair to all of the other guys by constantly thinking about Bentley and hanging on to him so tightly. These guys are there for her and she's not giving them her full attention and true access to her heart...that's not right and really needs to stop ASAP! Asking Chris to try and get Bentley back so she could talk to him was just too much for me....are you kidding me? Ashley needs to wake up and realize that Bentley left and these guys are still here...focus on them and forget about the guy who chose to leave you!! At the end of the day Nick didn't get the rose and was sent on his way...we never really got to see the two of them interact much and there didn't seem to be any real chemistry between them so I'm not very surprised.
Next week we are off to Hong Kong....and Bad News Bentley returns. Let's all hope that Ashley finally sees Bentley for who he is and kicks him to the curb once and for all!