The Bachelor NZ 2017 episode 17 recap: The Bachelor after dark

Tonight's episode of The Bachelor got a touch racy as the overnight visits were proposed - a defining moment in any season. Or, as my colleague so elegantly put it: "Is tonight the bang episode?"

Well, yes. But was it? 

Lest we forget the infamous overnight stays of season two - where Naz, Fleur and Erin were all offered the overnight stays by Jordan. Erin was the only one to decline and whoops! Out she goes. Not saying there's a correlation but...

Anyway, let's not take that as the yardstick to measure against, because look how well that turned out in the end.

Tonight each of the remaining Bachelorettes got taken on fantasy dates. I don't know whose fantasy they were tapped into, because my personal fantasy would be a date on which I could wear pyjamas and eat a wheel of brie the size of my face. But that wouldn't make for particularly flattering television, so Zac took the women sailing and sh**.

Lily was up first, surprised with horse riding along a rugged Hawke's Bay beach.

The Bachelor NZ Zac and Lily riding horses
Zac's used to having more than two on his dates, so he brought along the horses (The Bachelor NZ)

Lily being Lily, she wore an oversized woollen jumper and flared jeans. If I wore that, someone would try and give me a dollar to buy dinner on the street. But she looked fabulous. As per usual. 

The pair then moved into a cottage, where they drank red wine in front of a fire that was blazing almost as hot as the chemistry between them. Then… the moment. Zac passed Lily the letter that offered an overnight stay. 

This is definitely the face you want a girl to make when you propose she stays over. 

The Bachelor NZ Lily grimacing
That's what you want (The Bachelor NZ)

Lily's discomfort, which she said she "wore all over like a fur coat", was because this is one of those moments in life where you truly realise the guy you're dating is also dating two other women. Except you can't throw your glass of Shiraz in his face, you have to deal with it. As Lily said, "it's not normal". 

So she declined, telling Zac: "You can have all of this if it's just me". 

Surely that would send any sane man running to call the other two and tell them thanks, but no thanks, enjoy the complimentary Koru lounge buffet on your flight home. SMH. 

Viarni, who was taken out on a boat on which she showed she had no understanding of basic nautical knowledge despite her "affinity for the water", showed a similar attitude.

The Bachelor NZ Zac and Viarni on a boat
All aboard the good ship! (The Bachelor NZ)

After a leisurely lunch in a winery, they pulled up to an incredible house with views over the Hawke's Bay. Again, while cuddling on the couch, Viarni was given a card by Zac, offering for the pair to stay together "as a couple" in the house overnight. 

There's something about seeing all three women receive the same proposal to sleep over that gets my hackles up. Maybe it's just the dramatic change in the date card's contents - no more riding elephants.

However eventually, like Lily, Viarni chose not to accept the offer. That's two for two. 

The Bachelor NZ Zac and Viarni on the couch
Keep those hands where we can see them Zac, she ain't staying (The Bachelor NZ)

Finally, Claudia rolled up for her fantasy date. Wearing a pretty unflattering Alice McCall playsuit, she was taken on a helicopter ride above Black Barn Vineyard. 

Which was apparently absolutely WASTED because during the chopper jaunt, she said that the view of Zac was better than the postcard scenery laid out below. Are you absolutely frigging kidding me Claudia? Yes he's fine, but jayzus. 

The Bachelor NZ Zac and Claudia in a chopper
Look at the actual views Claud, you're gonna need the memories (The Bachelor NZ)

Over their romantic dinner, Zac dropped one of the best lines we've heard him say in any episode: "One of my mates used to babysit you."

Oh my f**king lord. Well, this is a good start. 

However the awkwardness of that moment didn't deter baby Claud, who finished all her dinner and so was allowed to stay up late with the grown-ups. After expressing excitement at enjoying some 'off camera' time with Zac, we were all waiting with bated breath for her to get the same card, offering for the pair to stay "as a couple" for the night. 

Claudia put her money where her mouth is, saying: "It would be a shame to waste this beautiful house." 

They got a private chef for the night, endless wine, a beautiful house - I mean, you can't blame the girl. I've done a lot worse for a lot less. 

The Bachelor NZ Zac and Claudia on the couch
Another date, another couch, another cuddle (The Bachelor NZ)

And then, the Earth-shattering moment. ZAC TURNED HER DOWN. 

"I want to spend time with you off camera because we don't get that much… but I don't think it's appropriate and I don't feel comfortable staying the night."

Ouchhhhhhhh. I felt that one right in the gut. 

At the dramatic Armageddon of a rose ceremony, to nobody's surprise (for various reasons), Claudia was sent to pack her bags and return that badly fitted ball dress. 

It was an emotional moment, in which Zac didn't seem to know how to react when an eliminated woman didn't tell him she wished him all the best, and that he had a great group of ladies to choose from. 

Instead, Claudia cried her eyes out on the car ride back, opening up emotionally to the driver just like all of us in an Uber at 3am on a Saturday.

The Bachelor NZ Claud crying in the car
Oh honey, we've all been there (The Bachelor NZ)

Now we're down to the final two: wild child Lily and "dream girl" Viarni. This week it all goes down, fam. We're nearly at the end. What a ride… or not, as this episode turned out. 

Will Zac choose Viarni? Or will Zac choose Lily? 

Tune in this Sunday at 7pm to find out. 


Watch the episode again on Three Now