Marissa May: An Insiders’ Look at Episode 8

Hometown dates! This episode is by far my favorite every season. We get to see the contestants in their natural environment and hopefully get to “meet” their family to get a better understanding of where they come from. As a contestant, I know what it feels like to question what this date would look like, and trust me, I’m probably not the only one in Bachelor/Bachelorette history to discuss the in’s and out’s with a family member to make sure it’s planned perfectly before leaving for the show!

After Ash gives us a predictable breakdown of where she’s at with the guys we get on to the dates. We first visit Constantine in a city whose name shall not be typed, but it’s in Georgia. Off they go to Giorgio’s…what I love about this date that you don’t get on the others is that you see how other people respond to Constantine that aren’t directly related to him.

I think it speaks volumes when you see his employees hug him as he walks through the door and the ladies gawking over him and Ashley. This gives some great insight to him as a person without them being prodded for perfect interview answers as to what he’s like. It’s a genuine reaction and all signs point to the good in him!

Now the family time…first things first…we need to stop this date immediately because I think Ashley may be related to Constantine. Ashley and his sister look so much alike!

His dad is the cutest man ever, mom is the sweetest with her southern accent and the entire family looks like a ball of fun. It’s easy to see where he gets his nurturing and kind demeanor from, as well as his cautious side. His mom and dad both question whether the relationship is forced or rushed but I think both Ash and Constantine have good heads on their shoulders to where if it was rushed or forced they wouldn’t go through with it. By the end of the night Constantine’s family stormed the house and it reminded me so much of my fam…no party is a small party when they’re involved! As Ash said it, she’s in love with Constantine’s family, and it’s safe to say so am I!

I think the most anticipated hometown comes up next with Ames. Ashley keeps referring to him being ‘different’ and I think we all are intrigued to see where he comes from. The anticipation is completely squashed when we see he hails from an all-American family fresh from a J Crew catalog complete with matching outfits.

Ames’ sister is the epitome of what I fear my family would do…turn into a promotional company spouting off every single positive thing about me in hopes of selling me to the highest bidder. Bless her heart, she’s only trying to help her brother stand out amongst the other guys. And while her touting of the bro may have made me cringe a little, her conversation with Ames was perfect. Letting him know he needs to step it up a little on the emotional end of things is what he needed to hear. In this situation the guys don’t have friends and family to bounce their thoughts off of or a third-party that can see the relationship from the outside and give sound advice. The trips home give them that opportunity and his sister told him exactly what he needed to do, it just may be too late. We end seeing a little more of Ames’ romantic side and he may have started to close the gap between him and the other guys.

Ben is the next home we go to and there is one thing that jumps out to me: Ben is the only guy that kissed her hello!

All the others give her a hug and get right to talking about their day that’s ahead but Ben and Ashley’s chemistry is soaring above the others right now! The whole first part of this date these two are all over each other…the romance they share can’t be denied. I thought it was SO cute when he mentioned that Ashley’s mom could come visit during the holidays. He is giving her exactly what she needs…thoughts of a future together, romance, affection and attention. In my mind he is starting to pass JP because he hasn’t brought in jealousy or other guys into their relationship. He has managed to isolate what they have and it’s starting to shine far brighter than Ashley and JPs connection.

I’ve said it before about Ben but I can’t help to say it again…seeing his transformation from being closed off to open and jumping in to love is what this show is all about. Ben thought he would never be in this position, falling in love with Ashley, and look at him! Regardless of how things works out, whether Ashley picks him or not, someone is going to be very lucky to have him because his new appreciation of emotion is so great to see! We even get a peek at it when he speaks about his dad. Ben may be my final pick!

Last but not least, JP brings Ashley to lovely Long Island. I love this date. Being able to let loose and have fun without being concerned about how goofy you may look is a great quality to have and these two both have it! And, uh, Ashley can rollerblade, figure skate, roller skate, dance, clean teeth…what CAN’T this girl do?! While Ben may have the romance side nailed with Ashley, JP definitely has the protective side down. He is so very caring and attentive to Ash. Putting on her skates, telling her to be careful…it’s going to be a tough decision for her! JP is another guy that has his head in the right spot (when he’s not busy being jealous). He has thrown fear out the window and has said that he’d rather go all in knowing that if he gets hurt at least it was because he gave it his all-aww our little green-eyed monster is growing up before our eyes!

JPs family is just as great as all the others but I LOVED when his mom brought out his picture.

This type of embarrassing act is what going home to meet the family is all about!

Back in LA we get prepped for the rose ceremony. This decision has to be the hardest so far yet she is completely confident and ready. This says a lot. I think Ash knows exactly who she wants and now is just enjoying her time with that person and confirming that they are supposed to be together.

It is so sad to see Ames go home but Constantine was SO happy to be chosen. Ames’ departure was sad. This may have been the first time we ever saw him unhappy. His limo exit made me tear up but he’s such a positive person that I know he will be right back on track to finding someone great.

Next week looks to be exciting as apparently someone comes back? Can’t wait to see the sights and love in Fiji!