'Bachelor Pad' eliminates Michael Stagliano and Erica Rose via surprise twist
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 08/21/2012
Bachelor Pad eliminated returning champion Michael Stagliano and returning player Erica Rose during Monday night's fifth episode of the third season of The Bachelor reality franchise spinoff in which 15 former bachelor and bachelorettes and five "Super Fans" compete for a $250,000 cash prize.
Erica, a 29-year-old law student from Houston, TX, who previously competed on The Bachelor's ninth season, was eliminated based on votes cast by Bachelor Pad's 12 remaining third-season cast members after host Chris Harrison announced a twist at the end of the episode in which all the males and females in the house would individually vote to eliminate one woman, who would then in turn get to choose one man to leave with her.
After determining Michael -- a 27-year-old entrepreneur from Sherman Oaks, CA, who previously competed on The Bachelorette's fifth season and Bachelor Pad's second season, which he ultimately won with partner Holly Durst -- had betrayed and lied to her despite the solid friendship she once believed they had, Erica chose to take him down with her and watch the major alliance in the house crumble.
The pair left following a heated exchange in which Erica called Michael out for being a bad person and friend.
"Well, I'm really leaving Bachelor Pad in a better place than I found it because I'm taking away a dictator, and by removing Michael, now people's minds don't have to be brainwashed. People can be free to make their own decisions. They don't have to have a tiny little man telling them how to vote and who to align with and dictating their every move. I had no problem telling Michael off and letting him know his fate, and it did feel really good. Because Michael got caught in his own lies, he was definitely a sore loser tonight," Erica said following her ouster.
"This is a nightmare, oh this sucks. Erica Rose, Erica Rose. I can't believe I'm sitting here. Erica, people wanted to send her home in Week 2 and 3 and I kept her around if anything. Ugh. Now everyone sees her true colors and that she just tried to play the little victim," Michael explained.
Bachelor Pad's fifth third-season episode began with the remaining 12 former bachelor and bachelorettes returning from the fourth broadcast's Rose Ceremony in which Jamie Otis was eliminated.
Blakeley Shea, a 34-year-old aesthetician from Charlotte, NC, who previously competed on The Bachelor's sixteenth season, said if Chris Bukowski -- a 25-year-old corporate sales director from Chicago, IL, who previously competed on The Bachelorette's most recent eighth edition with Emily Maynard -- didn't win the next challenge, he'd be gone due to the fact he had attempted to get vote her off. Blakeley thought Chris was "deceitful" and resembled the "sh-t on the bottom of her shoe."
Meanwhile, Chris was questioning his good friends' loyalty to him in the house, as he was very disappointed with either Ed Swiderski, a 33-year-old technology consultant from Chicago, IL, who previously competed on The Bachelorette's fifth season or Kalon McMahon, a 27-year-old luxury brand consultant from Houston, TX, who previously competed on The Bachelorette's eighth season, for turning on him when he presumed they voted for Jamie instead of Blakeley.
While Chris was still planning to get Blakeley out, he was seemingly the only one who felt that way.
"Chris has taken up all the assh-le space possible in the house, so I am just honestly avoiding Chris at all costs. If you're name isn't Chris, you are safe. There is a zero percent chance that you are going home. He's on his way out the door and let's just let that happen," Michael said.
Kalon admitted to Chris he had lied to him and voted for Jamie against his word, and Chris was pissed. Kalon told him that he was acting like a loose cannon running around the house and stirring the pot, which he couldn't be involved in. Chris was frustrated and felt his friends had stabbed him in the back although he knew it was just a game.
Chris then confronted Ed about whether he had lied to him as well. Ed also owned up to the fact he had voted to eliminate Jamie and claimed it was simply a last minute decision. Ed said he was following through with the wishes of his partner Jaclyn Swartz, a 27-year-old account manager from Newton, MA, who previously competed on The Bachelor's sixteenth season, to keep Blakeley around. Ed insisted his loyalty to Jaclyn was vital to his gameplay.
The pair then began yelling at each other about the situation. While Ed repeatedly apologized and justified his decisions, Chris was just angry his friend had betrayed him in the game. Once the screaming match was clearly not going anywhere, Ed walked out of the room and smashed his glass on the floor in the process. Chris apparently didn't sleep that night due to the chain of events.
"Kalon just blatantly lied to me, lied to my face, and Ed just went against me at the last second. It's ridiculous. Friends aren't supposed to lie to each other. Before last night, it was myself, [Tony Pieper], Kalon, Ed, and Michael, and now, who knows. I don't know who's in my alliance. I think it's just me," Chris explained the following morning.
Afterward, Chris Harrison told the cast they'd be participating in the season's fifth challenge and there would be no penalty for the man and woman who finish in last place like in previous weeks. He then explained the rules.
The male and female contestants were each instructed to race between two tables seven times while carrying a tray. Each time they arrived at a table, they had to add a cup and saucer to their tray. The first man and woman to successfully stack six cups and six saucers on their trays and make it to the finish would win the challenge. If someone was to drop a cup or saucer, he or she would have to start over.
In addition, the players were told they weren't allowed to touch the items on their trays while walking unless they were at a table stacking cups and saucers upon one another. The women would compete against each other followed by the men.
Blakeley, who had years of cocktail waitressing experience, won the competition and everyone knew she had an advantage on them from the beginning. Sarah Newlon, a 28-year-old bar manager from St. Louis, MO, who previously competed on The Bachelor's eleventh season, technically finished the challenge in first place, but she was disqualified because she touched the cup ontop of her stack prior to crossing the finish line.
Tony, a 30-year-old lumber trader from Portland, OR, who previously competed on The Bachelorette's eighth season, won out of all the guys, and he planned to be the best partner possible for Blakeley going forward. Chris felt bad for Tony because he believed the single father to be under "Blakeley's spell." Chris immediately knew he was on the chopping block following the couple's victory, calling the challenge's results his "worst nightmare."
Chris Harrison then met with the contestants inside the mansion and asked Blakeley whom she'd like to take on her date and whether she'd like to embark on a day-trip or an overnight date. She selected Tony and the overnight date assuming it was going to be extremely romantic, adventurous and luxurious.
Since Blakeley and Tony both won the challenge and opted to go on their dates together, they each were going to have a rose to hand out. Blakeley gave her rose to Kalon so that he could have some intimate alone time with Lindzi Cox, a 27-year-old development manager from Bellevue, WA, who previously competed on The Bachelor's sixteenth season, away from the house. Tony would get to hand out his rose after his date.
Because Blakeley selected the overnight date, Kalon and Lindzi were left with the shorter date. However, Blakeley grew quickly jealous when she discovered Lindzi was going to receive a Pretty Woman-style date, which started off with jeweled earrings and a bracelet as her gift. Kalon also got the keys to a Bentley to drive the couple to their date's destination.
The pair then drove to a bridge that was shutdown just for the two of them. There was a dinner table in the middle of the bridge lit by a large hanging chandelier. During their romantic date, Kalon found it the perfect opportunity to really open up to the woman he had been getting to know thus far.
"You are the one thing that keeps me sane in this whole process. I never in a million years thought I would find this. I really came on here saying it was all about the money, it's all about the adventure, whatever happens happens. I had lost all hope and faith in this concept, and finding you is the most pleasant surprise I could have ever dreamed of," Kalon told Lindzi.
"I know this experience is different than The Bachelorette," Lindzi replied.
"Well obviously, because I'm actually, possibly, maybe in love with the person I'm actually spending time with. With [Emily Maynard], I had to force it from Day 1, and that's why I was so hesitant to do this, but now I'm so thankful I did," he told her.
Kalon said that although America thought he was a villain, he often felt misunderstood.
"When I look in Lindzi's eyes, I see a woman who's going to allow me to be myself and not have to apologize for that -- that gets me and understands me and is going to support me," Kalon told the cameras.
Lindzi was also apparently beginning to fall for Kalon and felt lucky to have gotten to really know him.
"You are one of the most funny, genuine, kind people that I've ever met and I'm really glad that I got to see this side of you," Lindzi told him.
"I really cannot get enough of you," Kalon replied before kissing her.
Meanwhile, Chris was well aware he was the next guy to be going home. However, he didn't plan on going out without taking someone important down with him.
"I'm 100% percent confident I'm going to go home. If it happened the way it was supposed to happen, I'd be ontop of the world right now. I'd have a rose, Sarah would have a rose, Blakeley wouldn't be here. But I made that gamble and it didn't work because people lied to me. Kalon is a liar. I gave Kalon the benefit of the doubt but he just continues to lie and screw me over. I'm definitely going home this week but I'm going to go out like a man," Chris explained.
"I'm not going to go out without taking somebody with me. Obviously we can't send Kalon home this week, so if I break them up, then Kalon is that much weaker. My goal right now is to make sure that Lindzi goes home. Not that I have anything against her, but I feel like this will be a little bit of payback to Kalon. Watch out Kalon, I'm coming after your girl."
The following day, Blakeley and Tony embarked on their overnight date together. Tony thought Blakeley was gorgeous and wondered if they could find a romantic chemistry, while Blakeley was continuously surprised by Tony's good qualities. Everyone in the house was anticipating they'd have an over-the-top amazing date to be jealous over, but the couple drove off in a Jeep and were shocked to end up at an old trailer in the middle of a desert.
Back at the mansion, Chris reconciled with Ed and they discussed how "conniving, untrustworthy, and condescending" Kalon was. Ed soon became onboard with Chris' plan to turn the tables on Kalon and vote off Lindzi to weaken him and slap him with a little revenge.
Michael had also planned his own little date for his partner Rachel Truehart, a 27-year-old executive assistant from New York, NY, who previously competed on The Bachelor's sixteenth season, outside the mansion. They snuggled and kissed on a blanket and both felt like they were falling in love with each other.
Meanwhile, on Blakeley's date, she and Tony enjoyed dinner outside their trailer. Blakeley told Tony she had every intention to get to know him better but needed some time to completely open up because she had been hurt in the past and was always reserved at first when she really likes someone. Tony told her he was excited to see where things could go and then acknowledged his date had "been with the wrong dudes."
The couple then danced under the stars to music in the Jeep and kissed.
The next day, Blakeley and Tony arrived back at the mansion following their special night together, and Blakeley hoped Tony would have her back and put their relationship first. She was concerned his friendship with Chris would sway his judgments.
Chris then approached Tony right away and tried to talk him into his plan of eliminating Lindzi. However, Blakeley sternly wanted Sarah to go home since she happened to be Chris' partner, and she tried to convince Tony that was the best option for both of them. After a little hesitation, Tony finally decided to give his rose to Jaclyn despite Chris' last-minute plea to save Sarah.
Shortly afterwards, Chris Harrison met with the remaining bachelors and bachelorettes and revealed the twist in which everyone had to vote out one woman, who would then take any man of her choice down with her. Everyone was quiet at first because it had been clear Chris was the obvious target, but they all started scrambling to figure out how to handle the new rules.
If they voted out Sarah, she would most likely not eliminate Chris and take out a member of the major alliance, while if they ousted Lindzi, she probably would take Chris out. After weighing his options, Michael decided to pull a fast one and make a play against Erica because she wasn't technically in his solid alliance. Michael believed Erica would eliminate Chris without a doubt as long as he could make her believe that Chris was orchestrating the plan to vote her off.
Therefore, it became Michael's goal to plant a seed in Erica's head that Chris had turned against her and was rallying votes to get her out, when in actuality, Chris had no intention to send Erica home because he apparently tried to have her back throughout the entire game. All the while, Michael was going to make Erica feel as if they were best friends until the end.
Meanwhile, Ed told Jaclyn to her face that he didn't want a romantic relationship although the couple had been allegedly sleeping in the same bed every night and spending endless time together. Jaclyn cried because she felt embarrassed in front of all her friends, and Ed didn't know what to do besides apologize.
Once voting commenced, Nick Peterson, a 27-year-old trainer from Tampa, FL, who previously competed on The Bachelorette's seventh season, Sarah and Erica all voted for Lindzi. Michael told Erica he was voting for Lindzi as well although he had his sights set on eliminating her.
However, Michael didn't need to confront Erica about the potential votes coming her way because Jaclyn beat him to the punch. She told Erica that Chris was voting for her off and Erica quickly became furious. She immediately sought out Chris for answers, but he repeatedly insisted and promised he was voting for Lindzi.
Erica did not believe Chris for a second and told him that if she got voted off, he certainly wouldn't be safe -- which ultimately fell perfectly into Michael's strategy. Chris was dumbfounded and didn't understand where all of that was coming from. He had no idea who was running around planting these thoughts in Erica's mind.
Michael and Nick then confirmed Jaclyn's accusation for Erica, which motivated her to approach Chris again and bluntly acknowledge the fact she was going to take him out of the game. Michael felt his plan was "a stroke of genius" and loved watching it unfold. Erica told Chris he was "such a liar it was disgusting."
However, Michael's whole plan completely backfired on him much to his own surprise. Chris decided to pull Erica into the voting booth with him to show her that his vote was going to Lindzi. Chris knew it was a gamble for him whether Erica or Lindzi was going home, so he felt it was the best thing in his power to prove to Erica he was going to remain loyal to her.
Erica then came to the brutal realization that Michael was most likely lying to her, and she announced to everyone that if she was leaving, she'd be "taking the house down" with her.
Michael acknowledged the fact Chris had made a good play, but Chris' smart move put his own future in the game in jeopardy. Michael admitted he felt very vulnerable going into the Rose Ceremony and couldn't help but assume he was on the chopping block since Erica had every right to believe Michael was betraying her.
In the end, a bitter and resentful Erica was voted out of Bachelor Pad, and she revealed Michael was her selection to leave the game as well. Rachel broke down crying and was clearly heartbroken.
"I am going to try to change things before I go and break up an alliance. If this person has been a real friend to me like I thought he was coming into this, this wouldn't have happened. So Michael, I'm choosing you to leave. Hopefully this will make the house a lot more fair," Erica announced to the group.
After their goodbyes, Erica exchanged some nasty words with Michael and Rachel -- who had insisted she and Michael supported her and therefore called Erica out for being the backstabber.
"He's a manipulator and the little puppet master lost at his own game," Erica said.
"Yes, I got my hand caught in the cookie jar," Michael admitted.
"You told people to vote for me and then didn't. I don't care if you're mad at me, Rachel. You have a boyfriend, or whatever you want to call him, who's a master manipulator. He's a horrible friend. He's a backstabber, and now you're paying for it," Erica told the couple.
"Erica, I tried to get you off. I'm not denying that," Michael told her.
"And that makes you a crappy person and a crappy friend. Michael, you could've included me into your alliance. You're so fake. The smartest thing [Holly Durst] ever did was dumping you and marrying [Blake Julian]. That's the smartest decision she ever made," Erica snapped.
"Whoa, less, less," Michael pushed. "Erica, less."
"Because at least she's with a real man who's honest and doesn't lie. I'm glad you came back so people can see you're not this poor little victim of a love triangle," Erica continued.
"Oh, this is not going well," a seemingly horrified Michael said as he just shook his head back and forth and listened to Erica's insults.
"Instead, you're a bad friend and a bad person and I'm so happy I'm taking you away with me. I could not be happier and I'm serving justice. This is karma," Erica concluded.
The two then got in their limos and left the mansion.