'The Bachelor' recap: Leah Block lies and throws Lauren Bushnell under the bus, Ben Higgins crushes Olivia Caridi on two-on-one date
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 02/09/2016
The Bachelor star Ben Higgins sent a whopping four bachelorettes packing, narrowing his love search to only six women, during Monday night's dramatic broadcast on ABC.
Ben eliminated Jennifer Saviano, a 25-year-old small business owner from Fort Lauderdale, FL, at the first Rose Ceremony last night; Olivia Caridi, a 23-year-old news anchor from Austin, TX, during her two-on-one date; Leah Block, a 25-year-old event planner from Denver, CO, after she snuck into his hotel room to chat but only had bad things to say about another girl; and Lauren Himle, a 25-year-old kindergarten teacher from Ann Arbor, MI, during the episode's second Rose Ceremony.
The Bachelor broadcast began right where last week's episode had left off, with Emily, a 22-year-old cocktail waitress and twin from Las Vegas, NV, ranting about how selfish, disrespectful and fake Olivia Caridi was and Ben confronting Olivia about all the negative comments.
Olivia explained she had a target on her back after getting the First Impression Rose and a subsequent Group Date rose. She said the girls faulted her for being aggressive but she's just a confident woman by nature. Olivia said it was hard to socialize with the group when she knew they weren't her biggest fans.
Olivia also gushed about how intellectual she is and introverted compared to the other bachelorettes who just worry about their hair and painting their nails. Olivia said she reads alone in her room.
Meanwhile, Emily told the cameras she hoped Ben wasn't "falling for this act" Olivia put on. However, Ben opted out of sending Olivia home after their private conversation. Emily felt insecure and questioned her connection with Ben solely because of the fact he wanted to keep Olivia around. Emily just didn't want to be the root of drama in Ben's eyes.
A Rose Ceremony then took place and Ben handed out roses in the following order: Caila Quinn, a 23-year-old software sales representative from Hudson, OH; Lauren Bushnell, a 25-year-old flight attendant from Marina Del Rey, CA; Joelle "JoJo" Fletcher, a 24-year-old real estate developer from Dallas, TX; Becca Tilley, a 26-year-old chiropractic assistant from San Diego, CA; Leah; and then Emily.
Olivia, Lauren H. and Amanda Stanton, a 25-year-old esthetician from Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, already had roses from their dates with Ben in Mexico.
Jennifer was therefore ousted from the competition and she was upset because she didn't feel Ben had enough time to get to know her. Amanda hated seeing good girls leave when someone like Olivia was still in the running for Ben's heart and getting so many second chances. But Olivia was planning to fight for Ben until he became her husband.
Ben and his remaining bachelorettes then traveled to The Bahamas, where Caila received the first one-on-one date of the week.
Leah was "speechless" and called Ben's date decision a "slap in the face" because she had yet to receive a single one-on-one date with him and Caila was now getting her second. Leah was pissed because Ben was giving mostly all of the other girls plentiful time or at least validation through roses handed out at times other than the Rose Ceremonies. Caila felt so lucky and was also in shock about the whole ordeal.
Leah also knew that if Ben was unsure about Caila, he would've taken her on the two-on-one date instead of a solo date. Leah wondered whether she should quit the show at this point, but Ben explained to the cameras he needed more time with Caila because their first date was with two other men around the whole time.
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For their date, Ben and Caila went deep-sea fishing on a boat and relaxed. Ben thought Caila was funny, beautiful, sexy and smart, but he wanted to get to know the deeper person behind her bubbly attitude and big smile. When he basically asked Caila to open up and become vulnerable at dinner that night, she accused him of putting her on the spot in the hopes she cries.
Caila admitted she just wasn't ready to express herself so deeply yet, and Ben assumed Caila was going to choose to go home. But instead, Caila gave a very confusing speech about how she's falling in love with Ben yet fears she might hurt him since his biggest insecurity is being unlovable.
Caila also attempted to explain to Ben that her heart told her that he was the right man for her, but her mind said differently. All she knew is that she had strong feelings for the Bachelor and loved how he just "understood" her. Caila thought having Ben in her life would make her really happy.
Caila's mixed emotions on dating Ben just made her more attractive to him, as she had more layers to her than he thought and showed a real authentic side of herself. Ben thought she challenged him, and he really appreciated that, so he offered her the date's rose. Ben ended up saying it was one of the best dates of his life.
The next day, Ben embarked on a Group Date with Lauren B, Lauren H., Becca, Amanda, JoJo, and Leah, who was in search of some answers.
For their date, Ben took the bachelorettes out on a boat and then swimming with pigs. The situation started to get awkward when Leah told Lauren H. that Ben was basically just obsessing over Lauren B. the whole time and it was clear they had an incredible connection. JoJo also struggled with how much attention Ben was giving Lauren B. in particular.
Ben didn't know why the girls seemed tense and standoffish, but JoJo tried to explain the situation to him to the best of her ability. Ben couldn't grasp how he could go on a Group Date and keep all the women happy.
Leah then cried to Ben about the fact she had yet to receive a one-on-one date. She explained she genuinely felt ready for a serious commitment, and Ben agreed, insisting that's why he wanted to keep her around. Ben begged Leah to make the most of the Group Date for him, and while she did, she later vented to Lauren H. that Ben was an "idiot" for not giving her more of a chance.
That night, Ben confronted Becca about how she was also a little weird throughout the day. Becca explained it was tough to see him with other women, especially Lauren B., and some of the bachelorettes can't help but shut down occasionally because of that.
Becca noted she was only acting strange because she "really, really" liked Ben, which he found cute and endearing. Ben acknowledged his relationship with Becca had strengthened that night.
Ben realized he needed to be more discreet about his bonds with certain women on Group Dates. He just wanted to be fair, honest and open with his bachelorettes.
Meanwhile, Leah could tell Lauren B. was feeling very confident in her relationship with Ben, and because she wasn't herself, the image really upset her. Leah then spoke to Ben alone about how Lauren B. wasn't being real around him because she behaved differently in the house with all the girls. Leah insisted to Ben that because of who Lauren B. is, if he chose her in the end, things would never work out.
Leah's comments bothered Ben even though he wasn't sure whether to believe them. Ben then talked to Lauren B. about what one bachelorette had said. Lauren B. cried because she didn't understand why a woman would say that. Lauren B. felt like she got along with pretty much everybody in the house.
Once the conversation ended, Lauren B. bawled to the girls how someone had thrown her under the bus. Leah promised she hadn't said anything to Ben, and when Becca asked her for confirmation, Leah flat out said "nope" she didn't mention Lauren B.
"I would never be the type of person to single someone out and be like, 'Oh Lauren B.' or whatever," Leah told the girls.
Lauren B. just hoped that whatever was said to Ben wouldn't have a negative impact on her relationship with him. She felt sick to her stomach.
Back at the house that night, women including Emily, JoJo and Amanda talked about how it was crazy someone spoke badly about Lauren B., and everyone assumed it had to be Leah despite her denial. Emily comforted Lauren B. by saying Leah was just insecure in her relationship with Ben and jealous. Emily then flat out called Leah "a liar."
Without anyone knowing except Lauren H., Leah snuck out of her hotel to meet Ben at his. Ben was shocked to see her at his door, but at the same time, he was excited to talk to her more. Leah had told the cameras if she could get rid of Lauren B., she'd have a better chance to end up with Ben.
And instead of bonding more with Ben, Leah just continued to rant and rave about how catty and disingenuous Lauren B. was. Leah gave Ben an example by revealing Lauren B. had noted, "Oh, if Amanda ends up with Ben, that's great." Leah said Ben would eventually find out who the real Lauren B. is because he's a smart guy.
Ben was really hoping Leah would make the most of their time together, but she didn't. He then acknowledged their was a disconnect between them, and while he had an amazing first impression of her, their relationship never really grew from there. He said something was missing. As a result, Ben sent Leah home right on the spot. Their initial spark wasn't enough.
Leah cried about how she never would've talked about Lauren B. had she known Ben was on the fence about their relationship. Leah was blindsided and called Ben "a fool" for letting her go before really getting to know her. She said he "missed out."
Ben was upset because there was so much darkness surrounding his journey at this point. He became less confident about the fact he could leave The Bachelor with a wife.
The next day, Ben embarked on a two-on-one date with Olivia and Emily. Tension ran high the entire time, but Olivia was certain she wasn't going anywhere. The threesome went on a boat ride and then spent some time on a private beach when the weather unfortunately wasn't good. Emily hoped Olivia would show her true colors to Ben on this date.
Olivia told the cameras her relationship with Ben was an "all-consuming, ever-present, constantly-growing kind of love."
During their alone time on the date, Olivia bragged to Ben about how intellectual, strong and grounded she is. She then revealed to the Bachelor how she was feeling about him.
"From the moment I met you, I just knew it was right. And I'm just -- I'm in love with you," Olivia told Ben before he smiled and she kissed him.
Emily was starting to fall in love with Ben and told him afterwards that she would love to experience life with him at her side. He was excited to see this new side of Emily and get to know her without the attachment to her twin sister.
Ben then asked Olivia to take a walk with him on the beach. With a rose in hand, both Olivia and Emily assumed she was getting the rose. However, Ben let Olivia go and said he couldn't reciprocate the feelings she had for him. He also worried his feelings might never get to that point. Ben just had relationships with other women that were further along.
After giving Emily the rose, Olivia was extremely hurt and cried alone on the beach as Ben and Emily left in a boat together. Olivia bawled saying Ben had eliminated a really good person.
This week in The Bahamas left Ben feeling discouraged and alone. He was falling for a couple of women and simply wasn't in the mood to have multiple conversations at the cocktail party.
Therefore, he decided to cancel the party and head right into the Rose Ceremony. Lauren B. was upset she wouldn't get the chance to fix things with Ben, while JoJo cried because she had planned to tell Ben she was falling in love with him this night.
At the Rose Ceremony, Ben gave roses to Becca, JoJo and then Lauren B.
Since Emily, Caila and Amanda had roses already, Lauren H. was sent home. Lauren H. didn't get it because she was starting to fall in love with Ben and thought they were getting along great. She didn't understand why it was so tough to fall in love.