It’s been twenty-four hours since Leah left the mansion, and her parting words are still playing over in my mind:
“Have fun cutting through the fake bullshit.”
Fake bullshit. If there is fake bullshit, then there must be real bullshit, but is the real bullshit fake? Oh my god. It is doing my head in.
Anyway, whatever that conundrum, we will have to wait for the answer to another one. Leah’s gone, but has she done enough to secure her a gig on I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here? I guess we’ll just have to wait a few months to find out.
Meanwhile, back at the mansion, the girls have roughly divided into two camps: the ones that think it’s all sunshine and butterflies now that Leah has gone, and the brunettes. Well mostly Sharlene. She’s the right little Debbie Downer this morning, because she reckons she has spent about twenty-seven minutes with Matty and hasn’t spoken to him in over a month.
Jen also reckons she’s overdue for a single date, so when Alix breezes in with a date card, she’s positive her name is all over it. “It’s time for a breath of fresh air…” the card says. And the single date goes to…GET OUT OF TOWN…ELORA!
The women are outraged. Matty has already been on a single-date with Elora, so as far as the rest of the girls are concerned, this is very STALE air indeed. But of course their wrath is not aimed at Matty, but at Elora, who had nothing to do with it, except for a steaming hot body, luxurious locks of hair and perfect teeth…
Sorry. I think I may have started to turn for a minute there.
Matty loved his first date with Elora because it really made him think. Mostly it made him think about what she was thinking and she thunk right back at him.
Despite all that mental activity, Matty really needs to think a little more about his dates. In particular he needs to give these girls a little hint about footwear. Would it kill him to tell a girl to put on a sturdy pair of hiking boots when you have planned to traipse through the bush to some secluded swimming hole?
By some miracle, Elora makes it down the hill to Jellybean Pool without snapping an ankle, but it’s all a bit strenuous so they spend the next few hours lazing about on cushions. Then Matty produces an inflatable swan the size of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and together they spend so long blowing it up that there is a change of seasons in between. Surely, Matty, you could have asked the minions who delivered the pillows to throw in an Air Dragon, that convenient, nozzled can of compressed air that they are constantly flogging off on day time tellie.
“With Air Dragon, you’ll never have a problem with flat balls again…”
Swan inflated, Elora changes into a bikini so skimpy that there is plenty of skin to rub against the vinyl swan, resulting in a farting noise every time she moves. So it’s little wonder that she pushes Matty into the water, unbalancing herself in the process and once they are both dripping wet they share a long, moist, lingering kiss.
Meanwhile, back at the mansion, Sharlene is still whinging. “He thinks I’m the outside catering!” she laments. This is not boding well.
Back in the Blue Mountains, Matty has taken Elora to a secret mountain retreat where she gets just a bit too excited about the fire pit. Maybe they don’t have fires in Tahiti, but it’s more likely that Jellybean Pool was freezing cold and she’s desperate to thaw out. She just wishes she could stay there and not have to go back to the house with the girls.
Don’t you love foreshadowing?
Matty cuts to camera, and he inadvertently reveals that he has been sneaking around the Bachelor mansion when the girls haven’t been looking.
“I’ve been in Elora’s shoes before,” he admits.
Thankfully on this date there is a bit more talking than thinking, and soon Matty produces a rose and they share another kiss. Then he reveals a surprise. He has booked accommodation and they will be spending the night. It’s separate cottages – of course. What do you think this is? Bachelor in Paradise? Matty is a man of morals, remember and besides, Sister Kate probably left him a list of who the best George cousin-makers are and when they are at their most productive. Despite this, Elora looks at him seductively and invites him in and…
…we cut to an ad break.
It is morning when we return and Matty tells us that he did not take Elora up on her offer because he doesn’t want to rush things. All he is trying to do at the moment is whip the other girls into a feeding frenzy so that something interesting might happen. Besides, if Channel 10 is splashing out for two cabins, then by god, they are both going to be slept in.
Osher is also there bright and early, so maybe he spent the night spooning Matty. The girls arrive and Osher announces the “Inaugural Bachelor Bush Bash”. The word ‘inaugural’ makes me cringe, because it always implies that there may be more to follow.
The premise of this game is that the girls run a course stopping at a series of stations. Each station has a multiple-choice question to test their compatibility with Matty. If they get it right they collect a little red heart. Get it wrong and they have a minute penalty, timed by a little timer they pull out of the boxes. Producers must have been breaking into children’s bedrooms and stealing all their games of Boggle for months.
Florence’s strategy is to answer all the questions they way she would, which kind of ruins the compatibility element. This tactic results in her getting one answer right, and enough of a break between her and the other girls that she can cheat without getting caught. By the end of it she’s just opening boxes until she finds a heart, and dispensing with the questions altogether.
“There is no-one here to see me,” she says to the cameraman, but her own irony is lost on her.
Anyway, safely away on a single date and glass of wine poured, Florence confesses her sins. Matty is Mr Straight and cheating doesn’t sit well with him. And Florence is a cheat.
“Monopoly, cards…” she lists. “Tram fares, queues, tax returns…”
Sensing Matty thinks he is dating the female equivalent of that guy Leonardo Di Caprio played in Catch Me if You Can, Florence qualifies:
“But never on people. I never cheat in relationships.”
And that’s enough assurance for Matty, who produces the rose and they share a kiss.
Back at the mansion it’s cocktail party time. Sharlene is hitting the chardonnay and we learn that she has recycled all those little egg timers and is using them to precisely calculate how much time she has spent with Matty.
“Twenty-seven and a HALF minutes,” she confirms. She’s decided to make her move. Too bad she chose this evening to wear her Auntie Mildred’s dressing gown. Seriously, she’s wearing a dark brown smock with bunny rabbits printed on it (or are they pugs dressed as rabbits?), while all around her are visions of sex appeal: plunging necklines of gold lame´, lace-up bodices and frilly white mini rompers.
After letting Jen barge in in front of her, Sharlene finally decides to make her move.
“I am a bachelorette, not the external caterer!” she screams at Matty.
Unfortunately for her, Matty’s nailing this “telling it like it is” stuff. Sort of.
“I like what we have here,” he tells her. “But is it likely to evolve into a romantic connection? For my part, I don’t think so.”
Or to paraphrase: “You are the brunette-est of all the brunettes. And your name is Sharlene. This is not going to happen.”
Sharlene momentarily stares at him with her mouth agape, before making a dignified retreat upstairs to pack up all her evening wear pyjamas and egg timer collection and return home to her collection of musical theatre DVDs and her pug.
Osher arrives to announce the rose ceremony, and finally the Maths is starting to get tricky for the first time this season.
“There are two girls with roses. There are ten girls remaining. There are eight roses on the table. That means that there will be…(counts on fingers)…two of you leaving the mansion tonight.”
He could really do with an egg timer right now.
Anyway, after a terribly unsuspenseful rose ceremony (mostly because Channel 10 has been playing promos for next week’s episode for the last half hour of this one), Steph the Invisible and Alix the Bore, are sent home.
“Thanks for having me,” says Steph with all the emotion of someone who has been invited to the boss’s place for dinner for the first time and has been forced to eat eggplant.
Alix is disappointed. She’s not only boring, she’s delusional.
At least that’s what I think.