It's the last week in Asia before Hometown Week, and a Bentley-free Ashley is determined to make a fresh start with the guys. Well, with four of them, anyway. Two of them will get the boot after three one-on-ones and a group date.
In Taiwan, JP is confident about his "unbelievable connection" with Ashley after their great date in Hong Kong, but he's annoyed that she has to go through the charade of dating these other fools when it's obvious that she wants to be with him and him only.
But Constantine gets the first date card, which involves a train ride to the Lantern Festival in Ping-Shi Village in Taipei and lots of hand-holding and leg-touching. Back at the hotel, everyone still hates Ryan. He still hasn't had a one-on-one date with Ashley yet, and he's not having the next one, either: Ben gets the card. At dinner, Constantine warns Ashley about his loud family, particularly an uncle who might corner her and start asking crazy questions. Brilliant, Constantine. But Ashley is clearly smitten. He's playing it cool, telling her she's only seeing one side of him, and if he can take her home, she'll be seeing all of him. Ashley looks like she would like that, yes indeed.
At Taroko National Park the next day, Ben has high hopes as he speeds around the gorges on a scooter, with Ashley behind him. Ashley says Ben is one of a couple of guys she has strong feelings for, which becomes clear when they start making out at dinner. Ben says that he wants to go to the "next step" during Hometown Week, but Ashley looks like she doesn't want to wait until dessert, much less next week.
It's the next morning at the hotel, and guess who's not back yet? JP is silently seething on the couch, and the guys can't help needling him. He's completely confused about the whole Ben-spending-the-night-with-Ashley-thing. Meanwhile, in walks Ben, acting all nonchalant-like, as JP stares daggers at him. He just wants to get the group date over with, and he's hoping there's nothing romantic about it whatsoever.
Nope, just wedding pictures! That's right, JP has to take wedding pictures with Ashley, and then watch her take pictures with Ames and Lucas. It's like the producers are trying to make his head explode. Ashley says they'll be wearing some "interesting" apparel. Lucas gets a gold metallic kurta and Ames gets a light blue and peach bedazzled suit. JP is laughing, but he's sure his will be the worst, so of course he gets a fancy black-and-white tux. A tux. As Lucas correctly points out, if he'd gotten either of the other outfits, he'd have thrown a fit. Ames and Lucas are at least trying to go along with it, but JP has a good pout going on. Ashley has to punch him in the arm when they're taking their photos just to get him to smile.
At dinner, Ashley gets some private time with each of the guys. Bland Lucas says all he wants is a simple life and some kids. It's clear there's no real connection, but they kiss anyway. For some reason Ames brings along a picture of himself as a kid and tells her about how he was unpopular until high school. Ashley says he's "unique," and Ames doesn't understand that this is code for "no rose for you." And why is he wearing fuchsia pants? JP gets his private time, and they barely sit down before he starts to complain about how hard this week has been for him. He looks like he's going to cry when he talks about Ben not coming home and then having to watch her take wedding photos with other guys. He has such strong feelings for her that he had an "absolutely terrible" week. For a minute Ashley seems rightly concerned about all this jealousy after one good date. As pretty much any woman would at this point, she excuses herself to get the heck out of there. Except it's Ashley we're talking about, so the only place she's going is to fetch the rose and give it to JP. Ugh.
Ryan finally gets his one-on-one! Ashley describes Ryan as a "positive person, [with a] great outlook on life. He's successful, he's gorgeous, he's the sweetest guy, he makes me feel really special." But she doesn't know if she feels a connection with him. If that doesn't make any sense to you, just remember she really liked Bentley. But Ryan is clueless and thinks everything is going great. He decides their romantic lunch by the lake is the perfect time to quiz her on her environmental ethics. Ryan was literally telling her about how water heaters work. On a date. The only way it could have gone worse is if he suddenly told her that he really wished he could tell Emily about how water heaters work. Ashley finally stops him and lowers the boom. She doesn't want to talk about water heaters anymore, not with him anyway. He looks stunned. She's "not feeling it." She just wants to be honest with him, and he looks like he just wants to jump in the lake behind them and swim away. Oh, and he's not going to any rose ceremony, either. Hit the bricks, Ryan. You and your pink shirt. Before letting him go, though, she makes sure to tell him that the reason she isn't into him is purely physical, so that's a nice parting gift for Ryan. He can't even do his post-boot camera interview without crying about how he so badly wants to find someone to love unconditionally. Real love, never-ending love. So say hello to your new Bachelor, most likely.
And then there were five. Creepy JP knows he's in the clear, so really it's just four guys worrying. First she has to chat with Chris Harrison about how hard it was to dump Ryan and his water heaters. But then she's all business. No cocktail party, no talking to the guys. She's got her mind made up. She says she sees her husband in this group and that they mean the world to her. Well, all except one.
Constantine and Ben get roses, of course, but how can she possibly pick between expressionless Lucas and boring Ames? In the end, she chooses Ames, leaving Lucas looking, well, who can tell? Maybe his dog died, maybe he won the lottery. Someone sign that guy up for a poker tournament. Anyway, he's gone.
And now it's time for the much-hyped Brad and Emily update! Spoiler alert: they broke up. But you knew that, already. Emily rolls up in a black town car, and she's crying and shaking before she even sits down, and it only gets sadder and harder to watch after that. "I'll always be in love with Brad . . . Not a day will go by that I don't regret how things have turned out and wish things are different," Emily tells Chris. "Nobody's more disappointed about it than I am. I felt like it was a fairy tale going through it, and I feel like everybody else did, too. So I don't want anybody to feel that they were lied to . . . I just always believed that, or thought that, as long as you love each other that it'll work." How Chris wasn't crying at this point is a mystery. She says she felt like since they'd opened their lives to the public, people had a right to know what happened.
Emily tells Chris that she hopes this can be the end of all the publicity and paparazzi, so she can focus on being a mom and not have to worry about some guy in the bushes trying to take her picture, or about who she can trust to talk to who won't sell the story to the tabloids. Basically, the whole interview was just awful and sad and how did someone that nice end up on a reality show in the first place? There should be some screening process to weed out all the good people, so it's just jerks like Bentley and dopes like Ashley, and we don't have to watch interviews with nice, crying ladies and robotic hosts.
But on to next week! When the final four take Ashley home to meet their families and JP finalizes his plot to trap her and take her back to his lair.