As Juan Pablo traveled to meet each of the four remaining women's families, it was in Atlanta with Andi and Sacramento with Clare that he met the most resistance. While Andi's dad was on the defense almost the minute the pair sat down, in Sacramento it was Clare's older sister Laura whose disapproval left Clare in tears. But even though Juan Pablo appeared to have a tougher time with Andi and Clare, he sent Renee home after a nearly perfect date.
Should Juan Pablo have taken single mother Renee through to hometowns if he had an idea he wouldn't keep her around? And why have the remaining three women yet to profess their love to our Bachelor? Plus: Are the promos for Tuesday's "nightmare" of a fantasy suite date as bad as it looks? Host Chris Harrison weighs in.
Nikki had the first hometown and her family was immediately welcoming to Juan Pablo. Did that surprise you?
Chris Harrison: I wasn't sure what to expect with any of the parents, but Nikki's was probably the most amicable and easygoing. They just said, "Well she looks happy, she's a smart girl. If this is what she wants to do, we're all for it." So it was by far the easiest of all the hometowns.
She wants to say, "I love you," but doesn't. Was it just a case of cold feet?
Harrison: I can't think back to another season where we've hit this point and not one woman has professed their love for the Bachelor to his face. I don't know if that has to do with Juan Pablo or our women, I'd say it's a combination of both. Juan Pablo doesn't make it easy. Maybe Bachelors can't say, "I lov e you," back, but they can definitely show that they are open and wanting to hear that and making the women in many other ways feel loved, and I don't know that Juan Pablo has done that. Obviously he hasn't garnered any of the women to say it so maybe he hasn't made them feel comfortable enough. Heading into exotic dates, this usually doesn't happen in this day and age of the show.
I did not take Andi to be the kind of woman who shoots guns.
Harrison: Probably being Assistant District Attorney, you have to have a little bit of that training in your background. But she's a bada--, my kind of girl!
Andi's dad, who was very skeptical of Juan Pablo, was the star of the episode.
Harrison: Hy is awesome. I always think of how I'd act if my daughter brought a guy home, and it was this scenario and he spoke for all us dads out there. Juan Pablo has weeks to show his emotions and feelings, but to walk into a pretty tense situation and try and articulate everything in one evening, it's a little much. I don't think Hy was rude at all, but brutally and lovingly honest which is what made Juan Pablo take the direction as more endearing than [thinking] he was a jerk.
Juan Pablo came away from the date thinking it went really well so it felt like he didn't get the seriousness of his conversation with Andi's dad.
Harrison: I think we've seen throughout the season, especially with Sharleen and Clare, he's not great at reading body language and understanding the moment. He's missed a lot of cues and red flags and this is really no different. I think a lot of other guys would've come off that date thinking, "Man, that was not smooth sailing." But he's a little bit oblivious to that kind of stuff.
Andi said in her interview she could be falling in love. Did that surprise you that she got to that point already given their slower build?
Harrison: I was a little surprised, but I feel like with Andi she might've talked herself into it. You'd have to specifically ask her, but that's the impression I get. She wants this so bad she's going to convince herself after spending this much time with him [that] there's something there.
The Bachelor's Chris Harrison: I was surprised Sharleen stayed this long
Juan Pablo got to meet Renee's son, and her parents were very supportive even though I'd expect them to be the most protective having a child.
Harrison: With a son comes amazing responsibility and she's incredibly mature with a great head on her shoulders so I think it leads her parents to worry a lot less about her decisions. Her family actually seemed more of a fit with his life than any of the others. Having been around his family off-camera, Renee's family felt more like the Galavis clan than anybody's.
In Sacramento, Clare's sister Laura was a tough cookie.
Harrison: It was an uncomfortable situation. When this traveling circus pulls into town and comes into your life, it's a lot, and Clare signed up for this, but her family didn't. People have to understand Clare has gone through this for over eight weeks and is immersed into Juan Pablo, and you expect everyone to go along with that and understand, but it takes a special person to really be able to digest all of us quickly. I think Laura was just very protective of her mom and her family, and her guard was up.
Renee was eliminated. Do you think he shouldn't have taken Renee to hometowns knowing she wasn't the one?
Harrison: I'm OK with it. If you take Juan Pablo's word with the way he treated the two single moms, I get why people might say that because of how he set it up, but I think it was the right thing to do. He liked Renee a lot and wanted to see more of her, and it could've been her with the rose. It was really close, and I know that [by] talking to him in deliberations.
The promos for Tuesday make it seem like something major goes down with Andi. What can you tease?
Harrison: We've never had a fantasy suite turn into a nightmare and we've never had one seemingly begin so well and end so badly and easily change the end of the show.
Check back after Tuesday's episode (8/7c, ABC) for Harrison's thoughts on exotic dates!