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A Manly View of Bachelorettes in Alaska, Episode 6by Rob Daughtery, aka The Manly Man -- 07/10/2002
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The moment is here! After almost three weeks of non-stop thrills and excitement, we find ourselves at that very moment when we get to see these five "empowered" women somehow reduced to whimpering beggars as they are forced to wait outside in below-freezing temperatures while their "Men on Ice" are given the choice to sweep them away to a wonderful life of marriage and devotion or ignore them, thus forcing them into a life of loneliness and failure.
This is not how it really is, of course, but this is the impression I was given by the attempts at drama this show offered.
(For this to work, you need to add tension to your voice, read these increasingly faster, and add volume...)
Allow me to review the major players.
Sissie - Frizzie-Hair with Southern Belle Charm who actually looked pretty darn good when she had that Swiss Miss look.
Cecile - Void Of Personality Petty Drama Queen, American-Asian exotic beauty with dimples who acted sort of like a college freshman instead of her 26-years-old when it came to relationship issues.
Andrea - Redhead who seemed to get the most out of her Alaskan mini-vacation hook-up camp. She had a great sense of humor and a tell-it-like-it-is personality.
Karen - Blonde Non-Blonde With Issues Older Than She Wants to Admit, supposedly she was a lot of fun which never made it to the cameras. Instead, she just came across uncommunicative, reserved, afraid to let someone touch her, distant, still not yet over being royally dumped by her husband for a stripper, repeatedly thinking 20-something guys would want to date a 30-something woman. She had a 20-something body, though. But still, it was quite clear she had no interest, whatsoever, in moving to Alaska or doing things that might break a nail.
Rebekah - LA Princess Prom Queen Runner-Up Increasingly Large Wrinkles Woman was the girl who knew how to make the guys drool and think she liked them. She had a great TV body (bones-showing skinny) and when she wore a push-up bra and a low-cut shirt, the guys couldn't help but desire fondling action. Rebekah was initially very attractive in that not entirely beautiful but still acceptable way but as she talked more and more, her attractiveness decreased and it seemed like she added more wrinkles each time she flirted like a high school sophomore at a college fraternity party without her parents knowing about it and each time she smiled her snarl smile.
And the Men on Ice...
Brent - Big Hair Man who was Sissie's "Hunka Hunka Burnin' Love." Brent is one of those guys who you just can't seem to find anything negative to say about him. A bit on the reserved "I'm not going to act crazy but more my age and more like a divorced father with responsibilities" side. Everyone seemed to like him as much as they did Sissie.
Will - Laid Back Non-Specific Subject Teacher Man Boy. Will was Cecile's #2 man and he handled it quite well and seemed to go along with the flow, never challenging her but always knowing that she's still hung up over another guy. When she got comfortable with him (because she seems the type to always need a guy around) he got comfortable right back. Someday, this guy will make some woman very happy. But not Cecile, because she's hung up on...
Tim - Super Shy Cannot Tell a Lie Guy with an easy-on-the-eyes face. For the longest time, people thought that Tim was just incredibly shy and attributed his shyness to why he didn't ever kiss Cecile or have many heart-to-heart discussions. As it turned out, he simply didn't find her all that attractive and was doing the typical guy thing and going along with the flow instead of outright ending the relationship. Finally, he ended it when he was asked a question about being honest to his partner and he could not tell a lie.
Kristian - No Long-Term Thoughts Grins in a Knowing Manner Man. Repeatedly we heard, often more than once during the same show, how he just didn't see himself with Andrea long-term. He came across very intelligent and had the ability to express more thoughts and emotions in a simple grin or eyebrow-raise than many of the other guys expressed throughout their entire stay at Northern Light.
Kurt - Rock 'n Roll Roadie Earrings Guy. He and Karen were perfect for each other - neither of them knew how to communicate even the most simple thought. Karen kept picking him for her Man on Ice and it probably would not have mattered in the least to him if she went for someone else. If HE would've been able to choose a woman, Karen would never have been his choice.
Jason - Grown-up Boy Snowboarder who seemed to be here more for the hell of it than to actually meet some woman and marry her. Rebekah chose him repeatedly as her Man on Ice. He liked her, but it never seemed like he would die without her. Given a choice between Rebekah and a new way-bitchin' ski slope, he'd probably choose the latter.
Those were the major players. Bear with me as I try to not be as boring as this final episode was.
This last episode opens with more incredible scenery. We see a huge black bear running through the snow and, as Alisa pointed out to me, "We now know what Discover Channel videographers do for a living." She added, "The Saving Grace for me was the photography."
I totally agree. As was said before, I'd like to watch this show in an IMax Theater.
The host tries to be serious and dramatic, "Yada yada... right now, ladies, you must choose THE man you want to marry."
That word "marry" just doesn't fit. 20 days. Marriage.
I guess it's just easier than saying, "Ladies, you must choose THE man you would like to spend more time with opening yourself up to the possibility that you two may hit it off and someday develop into a serious relationship and possibly even marriage."
The problem is that this show isn't FORCING them to marry. Either force them to marry or stop parading them around in wedding gowns. Dammit.
Over the last 48 hours, the women had selected a second Man on Ice. Now, they had to choose between the first choice or their second choice. There weren't many surprises.
Blonde Non-Blonde With Issues chose Rock 'n Roll Roadie Earrings Guy after pretending to have an inner drama.
Void Of Personality Petty Drama Queen needed to chose between Laid Back Non-Specific Subject Teacher and the Goofy English Teacher. Once again, no surprises. She chose Will after pretending an inner drama, which instantly told me that they were coached to hesitate and pretend ponder.
Redhead, surprise, selected No Long-Term Thoughts Grins in a Knowing Manner Man over Very Large Man whom she probably spent but a handful of hours with.
After each of their choices, we are shown terribly saddened and distraught faces of the men not chosen. If ANY persons on this show should achieve post-reality TV fame, it's these guys because their acting abilities are star quality!
Prom Queen Runner-Up was asked, "Who do you want as your husband, Jason or Tim?" Being that the only reason she selected Tim (Cannot Tell a Lie Guy) was so that Void Of Personality Petty Drama Queen could be with him once last time, it wasn't much of a surprise as she went with her Snowboarder Boy-Man. Her profound love for this man she wants to marry was very convincing as she made her selection, "I think I'll go with Jason."
Frizzie-Hair selected Big Hair Man without hesitation.
All the couples were given one last evening together in a secluded cabin so that they could get to know each other better.
The host states his memorized script, "No one knows what the next 48 hours hold. To all of you, I'd say use this time wisely. Ask the questions that have not been answered. Share the feelings that have not been expressed. Leave nothing unsaid."
What?! You mean, 20 days isn't enough time? They need yet MORE time together?
We see that she still can't get Cannot Tell a Lie Guy out of her head. "I was comfortable with you from Day 1. I like the way you and I talk. I can't talk that way with Timmy."
Here's a life lesson, kids. If you're about to marry someone and this person is still comparing you to a past girlfriend or boyfriend, even if the comparison makes you look better, call off the wedding. Such a thing does not bode well. Years from now, you will throw it back in his/her face, "Oh yeah! Well, the night before our wedding you were STILL talking about Asshole! I KNEW I shouldn't have married you. I KNEW IT!"
Rebekah & Jasons’ Cabin
These two discussed their FIRST kiss.
You know, people have given her all kinds of crap for being so slutty/flirty, but during this whole show she has kept her clothes on probably more than any other girl.
Either that or Jason simply did not find her all that appealing.
Andrea & Kristians' Cabin
(Well, at least they are consistent with where they put the apostrophe. [Even if it is wrong – Ed.])
He brought her flowers. Is he changing? Is he becoming no longer scared of commitment? "Commitment is a stranger to me. But as I get older, you start to think about it more and that's where I'm at - starting to think about... commitment."
Karen & Kurts' Cabin
They both insist that they like each other and have feelings for each other and I'm just not buying it.
They must have gotten some action from each other, though, because we hear him say, “Gee, I must have been really tired, because I can't remember where I ended up last night.”
And she followed this with a little trying-to-be-a-bad-girl-but-not-pulling-it-off grin, "I think he might have tucked me in. I'm not sure where he went after that. Hee hee."
Couples with chemistry I don't mind. The others just annoy me.
Sissie & Brents' Cabin
We hear, and are shown, this tidbit of their conversation:
BRENT: I've a waited a long time for something good to happen to me. And I'm not gonna pass this by.
SISSIE: That's so sweet. I feel the same way about you.
We see Brent making breakfast as Sissie is asleep. Awww... breakfast in bed.
(And we aren't shown anything else or any other couple. Personally, such a short thing does not warrant its own heading.)
We see Cecile and Will leaving and giving each other hugs after loading their suitcases into the SUV. She says, and you need to remember this, "I think I could see myself definitely falling in love with Will."
Okay, so she THINKS she can DEFINITELY fall in love with Will.
Isn't language neat? In one simple sentence she not only demonstrates that she likes Will but she also shows her hesitation. Just think about all the things you can learn from someone if you hear EVERY word they say.
Rebekah and Jason say goodbye and I could only see more snarling and fakeness smiles.
Karen and Kurt continue their terribly non-emotional relationship with one of the least romantic kisses I have ever seen between two people who supposedly like each other who may not ever see each other again.
Andrea and Kristian, on the other hand, look like they really get along well and really enjoy each others' company. Will Mr. Non-commitment break his pattern?
And instead of just going to a commercial, the producers must've realized that their show up to this point is REALLY dull because they actually have previews of what's coming up next, with a subtitle even - Coming Up Next. It reminded me of Entertainment Tonight, which spends more time promoting what's coming up later in the half-hour show than it does actually showing what's in the show.
The women are shown putting on their wedding gowns, with the host's voice-over, "Shortly, each women will learn whether she's found the man of her dreams or whether she'll be left waiting at the altar."
Okay, so far the show was boring. Now it gets REALLY boring. To demonstrate just how boring it is, I'm going to type whatever I see on the screen in real-time. I'm a pretty fast typist, but not lightning speed. If it seems like I've typed a lot of words, it's really not. It's just that they had a HUGE amount of fill-in-the-gap nothing.
During college, I was a DJ at the college radio station. Occasionally, someone would be there with me selecting the music to play. A couple times this person hadn't made a selection and just as he heard the song ending I also heard him scream, "OH SH'T! TALK OR PLAY A PSA (Public Service Announcement) OR SOMETHING!"
If you've never tried to just talk off the top of your head for a solid 1-3 minutes while inside a tiny room with basically nothing but a microphone and a control board to inspire you, you should try it. It can be very difficult. Do it right now. Sitting at your computer, just start talking and see if you can make up useless stuff to fill in just one minute of dead air.
This is the same challenge the producers had! They had to fill up a lot of dead air.
Unfortunately, they failed. Thus, I shall type just what I see on the screen real-time.
Before I begin, I need to know why the time is significant. Once again, the idiot executive with a big office overruled the writers who argued, "But sir, we don't need to show the time. It's irrelevant to what's happening on the show."
"I make the decisions around here and I want the time to be shown. It'll be more dramatic if the viewers see that the women are forced to wait an hour for the plane."
The writers groan.
Ok, beginning my real-time typing...
Karen walking in the snow by lake holding up dress, dragging it in the snow. Host says boring obvious stuff. A shot of the original plane arrival. Shots of the first few days. Shots of Kurt. Kurt in jacuzzi. "He's got a nice body." More shots of their pseudo-dates. Host, "Your relationship progressed despite the age difference." Kurt's earring screams, "I wanna zoink 19-year-olds who want to get backstage to my roadie gigs." All her other dates, one at a time. Bear Hug Man appropriately named. Her excuse for dumping him. Mike Very Worried Scared Little Man deemed second man on ice. Unromantic moments with Kurt. They almost touched a few times!
Back to the present, smile in the snow. Host walks away in thick fur coat. Runway model during faux fur show. Slowly he walks with his nice poofy hair not moving in the breeze.
She's all alone. Plane flying. Still flying. Karen looking out. Nice mountain shot. Many clouds pass - fast motion. Karen STILL looks. Karen thinks, "He's not coming so why do I have to endure this? I should never have done this. Alaska? There's no way in hell I would move to Alaska." Hears plane, turns around. Plane zooms in and almost crashed into her head. THAT would've been a memorable ending to this show, "Reality TV contestant killed by plane. Man who dumped her thanks God he wasn't on the plane about to propose!" Karen alone some more. Plane lands. Another plane angle. Surfing in. I REALLY want one of those. Karen looks around some more - tries to spot all the cameras pointing at her. Judging by the cloud formations, she's been forced to stand there for 30-60 minutes. Plane pulled into dock by man. Driver looks back like, "Yo, woman. He dumped you!" Karen anxious. Plane is shown empty. Karen even more anxious but sad now. Another shot of Sad Karen.
Host strolls up, "Karen, there's no one on that plane. Kurt isn't coming. So, you're free to go home... alone." I think this would've been fun if he just shouted this through a mega-phone out of camera's view. She walks. Walks some more. Different camera angle of her walking. Now on the dock. Almost to the plane - more walking. Boarding plane. Kurt's excuse into cameras for leaving her alone. Plane takes off. Karen sitting alone in plane forlorn and lonely. Plane flies off. Frozen tundra scene.
Yawn as I wonder how the hell anyone could ever think that Kurt was ever really considering asking this woman to marry her and she, even less so, was ever considering moving to Alaska.
To everyone's surprise, especially mine, No Long-Term Thoughts Grins in a Knowing Manner Man steps out of the plane and nervously strolls up to Andrea. He's nervous but he does seem truly happy. "Hi. You look beautiful."
He pulls out a handwritten note "to help me get through this," and reads, "Andrea, you are a very unique and wonderful person. I feel blessed and privileged for the time we've shared. I've seen your beautiful and strong sides. I like the way you carry yourself through life - straightforward, honest, and open. Yet if you had a worry you shared it with me. I loved our nightly chats. You've shown that you're wild enough or crazy enough to take some risks when opportunities appear and confident enough to savor the resulting experiences, sweet and sour.
"I want to see more of you, see more of these qualities, and discover some new ones. Our adventure is just beginning. So Andrea, will you make some time to spend with me in Alaska and let me get to know you better?"
Throughout all of this, she looks sincerely happy. She responds with a gleam in her eye, "Absolutely. I'd love to do that."
Really bad, new-age-ish Yanni romantic music played in the background as they hugged and climbed into the plane together.
The idiot executive with a big office thinks to himself, "I am SO happy I forced them to play this CD that I have in my collection. I LOVE this music!"
(Maybe the idiot executive with a big office wanted to demonstrate that they kept the show on schedule...?)
She arrives full of confidence and with a reminder of her $23,000 dowry and the memory that almost every man made a plea to her. The plane flies past, turns around and docks.
She looks confident some more. Gives a big smile as the plane pulls in, a smile of anticipation and greeting for when the plane's pilot swings open that door and allows Jason to BOUND ACROSS THE SNOW and beg for her hand in marriage. She wants him to know that she's so very happy he's here.
The smile continues - and I mean this is a BIG smile - until it hits her: NO ONE IS ON THAT PLANE! The smile drops into a shocked, embarrassed scowl. "I was dumped! Someone actually dumped me. I am pissed."
All over America, women cheered as they won a moral victory over the sexy, flirty girl who always captured the interest of potential boyfriends only to ignore them later, thus wasting a good man and forcing the good women to go home alone.
After the review of Cecile's dating experiences in Alaska, she stands in the cold wondering if her #2 man will fly in and ask for something more.
A few minutes of Cecile shots and plane flying shots...
The host walks up, "Cecile, Will is not on this plane." And she doesn't seem terribly disturbed. The host continues, "But, there's a gentleman that wants to come up here and have a few words with you."
Angelic music plays in the background (seriously, it's new age angelic. CEO, "That was my CD, too!") as Tim steps out of the plane. Cecile grins with loving glee.
He walks up to her in his casual stroll, decked out in one of those poofy, down-filled coats (how come the guys didn't have to wear a tuxedo but the girls were forced to freeze in wedding dresses?), "Well, hello."
"Hi." Confused grin.
"Well, here I am. When I came here, I was really nervous and I was feeling an awful lot of pressure not to be here. I didn't come here with a very open mind. That wasn't fair to you and that wasn't fair to me and I ended up running scared."
Tim's eyes are red from almost crying and he nervously reads from his notes.
"But while I was here I met a beautiful woman who is wonderful both inside and out. I guess my question to you is, would you be willing to give me a second chance before you go and possibly come up here at some point and check out my little world away from all the cameras...?"
"I would love to."
Majestic, romantic Yanni music kicks in and she adds, "Absolutely." And it's clear, at this point, Cecile is the happiest she's ever been during her entire Alaskan adventure.
They give each other a big hug, say a few more kinds words, and Tim thanks her for saying yes.
Sappy music volume increases.
But I must admit, I still have my doubts. Someone doesn't say the things he said to the cameras with no hesitation only to turn around and suggest that he meant none of them.
So far, I've been surprised twice in that Kristian came back for Redhead Andrea and an even bigger surprise just happened with Tim and Cecile. I hope there are no more surprises because it would really suck if Sissie and Brent don't end up together.
After the same review of her Alaskan experience, we are forced to watch several minutes of the flying plane. Finally, it docks and Brent strolls out with a big smile - reciprocated by Sissie.
He shyly says, "Wow, you look very beautiful."
He has no notes.
"First of all, I want to tell you that I've had a wonderful, wonderful experience with you. And then second is the fact that I've actually met somebody, become friend with, and fall in love with. To me, that's amazing that it could happen. You've shown me what love feels. I haven't felt that in... years.
"I feel like I'm the luckiest man in the world. I do.
"Second is, I have some questions: First question is, would you be willing to come to Alaska and visit my family and my kids - you know my kids are really important to me - and also my family. Would you be willing to do that?"
She responds very quickly, "Yes."
"Second question is, I would like to go down to South Carolina and visit YOUR family. It's important for me to know your family and have them know me as well, what I'm like, and your relatives, what your life is like and background.
"Since you've answered all these questions, it sounds like you're willing to do that..." He takes a deep breath, fighting back tears.
Sissie smiles, "Don't make me cry."
"Things do fall into place. After seeing what I'm like up here and after seeing what you're like down there, and visit each other's families..." He takes another deep breath and says to himself with an embarrassed grin, "Be strong, be strong..."
He continues, "Would you be willing to move up to Alaska, leave everything behind, and..." he sees her shaking her head yes and pauses... "Would you marry me?"
She nods a big yes. "I would." They hug and we hear them talking to each other and so clearly see how happy they are together.
They literally walk off into the sunset together as the lake reflects a golden hue from the mountains and sky.
The show ends with more scenery and final updates on the couples:
Sissie moved to Alaska to pursue her relationship with Brent.
Karen returned to New Hampshire. She and Kurt have not seen each other since.
Andrea returned to San Francisco. She and Kristian are maintaining a long distance romance.
Rebekah returned to Los Angeles. She has not seen Jason since.
Tim visited Cecile in California. Afterwards, he told her he did not want a relationship.
So, what did we learn, kids? We learned that, despite my biting criticism of this show, statistically-speaking, 1 out of 5 is actually pretty good odds; far better than the bar scene or church socials for meeting that special someone. (And it may even be 2 out of 5 if Andrea and Kristian work out.)
We learned that if someone has major hesitations in the beginning, chances are the relationship won't work out in the end.
And we probably learned several other things that I don't feel like writing about because I am so done with this show. It was a guilty pleasure. It was easy to comment about and make fun of, but I've had enough.
I'm happy for Sissie and Brent and I hope that Andrea and Kristian somehow work things out.
Have any comments? Difference of opinion? Further insight? Email me at Rob@LetusPonder.com. If you liked my commentary and my various opinions and such, check back soon as I comment about the most psychologically-damaging show on TV: Big Brother. And, as always, visit www.mp3.com/robdaugherty and listen to my Guided Imagery/Hypnosis CDs. I joke around here but I do have a serious side. And I guarantee you that there isn't anything like these CDs anywhere on the market. Everyone who listens to them loves them. You will, too. And, as always, visit www.manlythoughts.com for more commentary, www.hypnosite.com for more hypnosis, and www.LetusPonder.com for my short stories.
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