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'The Bachelor' Finale and 'After the Final Rose' Recap

by Kim Potts, posted Mar 1st 2010 10:00PM
Oh, Jake. Jake, Jake, Jake. In a choice that came down to the so-called good girl vs. the girl who'd been called everything but good, 'The Bachelor' Jake Pavelka chose the bad girl, by proposing to blonde vixen Vienna Girardi and sending good girl Tenley Molzahn packing.

Yep, he chose Vienna, the woman hated by many other bachelorettes; the woman who said she was in love for the first time (despite being married once and engaged to another man); the woman who both viewers and tabloid magazines had trashed since Jake had chosen her as a finalist.

And the woman who got not only the final rose, but a huge rock on her finger.

"Vienna, I love you with everything that I am," Pavelka said, before dropping to one knee. "Vienna, will you marry me?"

She said yes, and, cue the music, because -- surprise! -- ABC actually sprung for the Jeffrey Osborne version of 'On the Wings of Love,' this season's theme song and the subtitle (because, you know, Jake's a pilot) of the season.

Not that the choice was so clear cut at the beginning of the finale, especially when it came time for Vienna to meet the Pavelkas. Jake had let it slip to his family that Vienna was the woman all the other women disliked; when Vienna met them, her contentious relationships with the other women was one of the first things she told Jake's family about herself. And this came on the heels of Mrs. Pavelka telling Tenley that it was especially important to her that the woman Jake married would get along well with her other sons' wives.

Getting along well with other women ... not exactly a part of Vienna's highlight reel.

But, in an obviously heavily-edited, and relatively brief, bit of footage we still don't fully understand, the Pavelka women went from disliking Vienna to really disliking Vienna to, in the case of one sister-in-law, crying and saying she'd misjudged Vienna, to the family giving Jake the thumbs-up to choose her as his bride.

Despite wowing Pavelka's entire family -- and eliciting a few tears from Papa Pavelka when she described how Jake had lovingly described his parents' marriage -- Tenley's final date with Jake was marred by a discussion in which he asked if she worried that they lacked physical chemistry (which, of course, meant he was worried about that very thing). They made up later in the day, but the lack of physical chemistry was apparently the deal breaker for 'The Bachelor.'

"I do love you ... you're just perfect. And I don't know what it is ... something just doesn't feel right," Pavelka told Tenley, the perky divorcee whom a fellow bachelorette once compared to a Disney cartoon character, before he bid her adieu.

Said Tenley: "My heart feels broken right now ... Jake will see the mistake he made, and I feel bad for him. I don't think he knows what he wants."

"With Tenley, I just felt like there was something there that had to be forced ... I just wasn't comfortable being myself," said Pavelka, the Dallas-based airline pilot who was himself a reject from Jillian Harris' season of 'The Bachelorette.' "I know what's in my heart, and I know what I'm doing is right."

And, if you're not too bummed out by his unpopular choice of significant other to see more of Jake on TV, it was announced during 'The Bachelor' finale that he will be among the 11 contestants on 'Dancing With the Stars' when the show debuts its 10th season on March 22.

Highlights from the 'After the Final Rose' reunion special:

Jake to Tenley:
"That was the best and worst day of my life" on the day he proposed to Vienna and broke up with Tenley.

Tenley to Jake:
"Do you feel like it was a little unfair to Vienna that you were so attached to me, yet you were going to be a very, very big move with her? I can say that I'm relieved that I wasn't her if you were felling that much passion about both of us," which elicited applause from an audience that, like most of us, still doesn't really understand why he chose Vienna.

Jake on Vienna:

"Vienna's my baby. I am so in love with her ... Once you get to know her, she's the kindest, most gentle person."

Jake on Vienna as the controversial choice:
"I know that girl. I know her heart, I know her motives, I know her values, I know her passions. And she, out of all 25 women, and all the women I've ever dated and ever met, she is the best girl for me, and everybody's gonna have to trust that I let my heart lead, and hopefully celebrate with us as we move towards a marriage."

Vienna on the stories tabloid magazines have printed about her since she became a 'Bachelor' finalist:
"I have a secret boyfriend that's so secret that I don't even know about him."

More from 'After the Rose':
- Jake and Vienna confirmed she'll be moving to his hometown, Dallas, immediately
- 'Bachelor' host Chris Harrison surprised the happy couple with a return trip to Saint Lucia and a live performance, by Jeffrey Osbourne, of their season's theme song, 'On the Wings of Love' (during which they slow danced and made out ... Jake and Vienna, that is)
- Harrison revealed the name of the next 'Bachelorette' star, and it is ... Ali Fedotowsky, the 25-year-old finalist for Jake Pavelka's heart who chose to leave him and the show when her employer demanded she return to her job.
- Jake and Vienna said they haven't set a wedding date, but would be discussing it soon

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