Following the wafting stench of desperation and hair gel seeping out from underneath the cracks in the door, Meredith approaches the house to find all seven guys waiting for her like slobbering dogs at the door. I mean, I know these guys have all filled out applications, gotten blood tests, been psychologically screened, and left their homes and jobs all for the possibility of getting engaged to a girl they'd never met before, but still, you guys...way to play hard to get, here.
A quiet, understated stretch Hummer ride later and we're on a helicopter, Chad telling us about the trip sitting next to Meredith with the color commentary of a trained raconteur: "I kinda liked it, y'know, when our pilot would make a sharp left turn or a sharp right turn," he narrates, "and we leaned into each and we both felt our stomach kinda go, like, 'whoa.'" Wow. Kinda makes you agree with Chaplin that this might have actually worked better as a silent medium.
Way out in a location we're told is called "Coyote Dry Lake" in Paradise Valley, CA (perhaps named so because it appears that the "paradise" part might line the sides, because it certainly seems absent down here valley-side), Brad ups the already absurdly high "dumb hat ante" by throwing his blue-striped skull cap into an already crowded ring. He and the rest of the gentlemen come across a dessert floor filled with ATVs, which he tells us is a good thing for some reason, because "just the fact that we're all gonna get on these ATVs and cruise around the desert in this no man's land was unbelievable." They don their helmets probably as a method on the part of the producers to get them to cover up their stupid hats, and off they go. Oh, ATVs are big dirt bikes, if I didn't mention it and you didn't know. Ryan M. expresses admiration for how "crazy" Meredith was on her bike. This makes Matthew feel "drawn" to her, and he expresses a desire to "make an impression on her." Well, you're doing a good job so far. Just keep reading the script from every other season of this show and Meredith will do the same, and if you've been cast in the role of "Ryan" rather than in the role of "Jamie," you'll come out on the other end looking just fine. Unfortunately, I think you might be something of a Jamie.
You know what excites real men? Date boxes. This is why a simple black box sitting on a pedestal outside of ManToLay Bay (I can't remember if I've used that nickname before...I'll grant you that it sounds very familiar) causes stark girly delight in Ryan R. and Eliot, who just happen to find it, right in the middle of the two of them spending some alone time together. Those two, at least, are probably disappointed to find Meredith staring back at them, this time making with the bling and also, well, the bling, in her diamond necklace, peach prom gown, and white fur shawl. Meredith invites Rick on a faaaahncy one-on-one date. Rick thinks this would work better in black-and-white. Meredith thinks it's the pictures that got small. Eliot thinks he might want to try the dress on if nobody minds.