Bachelor makes his pick, but retains eligible status
Today wraps up the Hawai'i's Bachelor dating challenge. After five dates and many roses, there's definitely no love connection.
By Tanya Bricking
Advertiser Staff Writer
|Winning bachelorette Brynn Leake kept smiling even after Hawai'i's Bachelor Kelly Komoda rejected her offer of a playful kiss to end the game. After dinner at Michel's at the Colony Surf, the couple rode off into the night in a carriage. Leake shared her winning bouquet of roses with runner-up Angela Hoan and insisted Hoan would not be a third wheel if she came with them. More photos from the final date are available in the Hawai'i's Bachelor photo gallery.
Jeff Widener The Honolulu Advertiser
See the video from the last date, view the photo gallery and read the dating diaries on the Hawai'i's Bachelor website.
You can meet the Bachelor and the dating-game contestants at the Hawai'i's Bachelor Party, tonight at The Ocean Club at Restaurant Row. It's open to the public after 9 p.m.
Last date credits
The Advertiser organized a romantic setting for the last date in the Hawai'i's Bachelor game with help from these sponsors.
Dinner: Michel's at the Colony Surf
Carriage: Honolulu Horse & Carriage
Flowers: Bella Rosa
Catch the details of the last date in the dating diaries on the Hawai'i's Bachelor website. Here are a few excerpts:
"We made a deal that whichever one of us won would kiss Kelly. Strictly for entertainment. I mean, you all hung in this long, the least we could give you at the end is a kiss, right?! ... Being that he wants to get into acting, I thought he would be game.
Kelly's response was rather disappointing. He got all squirmish and would not do it. I understand him trying to protect his name, but come on, he wanted to play this game, and this is what it is all about."
"To borrow a saying from Sally Field 'You like me! You really like me!' can sum up how I am feeling upon winning 'Hawai'i's Bachelor' game. What a surprise!
I never thought I'd be writing a victory diary when I entered this contest. What an incredible journey this Bachelor game has been. It's had its share of highs and lows, its scandals and moments of listlessness. But here we are at the end, and I still can't believe I am the winner.
Thank you Kelly, for choosing me. I am deeply flattered and don't quite know what to say."
They wanted to add some spice to what turned out to be a less-than-passionate pursuit.
Whichever bachelorette received the bouquet of roses from Bachelor Kelly Komoda to end the game, they decided, would give him a playful peck on the lips.
But Komoda, a 26-year-old teacher who wants to be an actor when he grows up, had trouble pretending to be excited about puckering up.
He congratulated bachelorette Brynn Leake as the winner and handed her an armful of two dozen red roses, saying she made him feel the most comfortable throughout the game. When Leake revealed the plan to kiss him, however, that comfort turned cold.
"Oh, I ain't kissing," he said, sending Leake into a fit of embarrassed laughter.
Bachelorette runner-up Angela Hoan tried to coax them to smooch for the photographer who had been trailing them. But Komoda refused.
"You guys can kiss," he told the bachelorettes. "I'm not drunk enough."
The twist in the story of a Hawai'i Bachelor looking for a love connection is that he really wasn't looking for love at all. He had kinder things to say about the food than his dates.
He suggested that the bachelorettes give him a kiss on the cheek for the camera. (That's when Hoan said, "Do I have to?" But she obliged.) Then the women split the roses, and Leake insisted that Hoan join them on what was supposed to be a romantic horse-drawn carriage ride around Kapi'olani Park.
Worried about his image
Hawai'i's Bachelor says he wasn't jilting anyone. He was just looking out for himself.
He didn't want anyone thinking Leake was his girlfriend now. He wants this thing to be over.
After a month of dating in the spotlight, he's decided it's not the way to go.
"It's so not personal," he said. "The dates are group dates, and, you know, the camera's always on me. It's hard. It's not like a normal date. I would probably not do this again. I would never apply to be a Bachelor guy. It's hard work. I've had enough."
He says he hopes being recognized will open the door for print ads and commercial modeling work.
As for dating?
"I date a lot, I mean, I go out with a lot of girls," he said. "But, I mean, as of a girlfriend now? It might be hard because I'm traveling and doing a lot of stuff."
Not that he's left any broken hearts.
"Disappointed? No," said Hoan, the 21-year-old bachelorette who became branded in the game as "the former Miss Waikiki." She says Komoda wasn't really the prize of the game because he wasn't looking to get involved with anyone. "The only prize we really got was the roses, and we split them."
As for Leake, a 29-year-old fifth-grade teacher, winning the game but not the guy leaves her happily in a spot that's akin to something like Hawai'i's Most Eligible Bachelorette.
She said she was flattered to be chosen and glad that she and the Bachelor are parting as friends.
This kind of attention can mean only that her love life is looking up, she said, and she's looking forward to a fun summer of dating.
"I think I'm a really great girl," she said, "and I think I deserve someone great, too."
Moving right along
The fact that Hawai'i's Bachelor and his dates are still single at the end of this is no shocker to any of the players. From the beginning, the bachelorettes bonded while Komoda struggled with his role at the center of the game.
Each week, Komoda eliminated bachelorettes. But when they teasingly flirted, he flinched. Early on, Hoan said she might feel some chemistry toward him. He never made a move.
A sampling of their dinner conversation Saturday night at Michel's (a fancy oceanfront French restaurant near Diamond Head):
Leake: So, what cologne do you wear?
Hawai'i's Bachelor: Actually, I have a cologne collection. ... I've worn this one before. This one is Pleasures. Calvin Klein Pleasures.
Leake: Pleasures, baby, you wore Pleasures for us tonight. (Laughs.)
Hawai'i's Bachelor: Uhhh.
Leake: Yes! Just say yes.
Hawai'i's Bachelor: Yes, yes.
Leake: OK. (Laughs.)
Hawai'i's Bachelor: But I have like 10, 12 different ones. 'Cause I don't drink wine, so when I wanted to start a collection, I was like, "Hmm, I don't drink wine, no sense I collect wine," like lots of guys collect wine. So I have a cologne collection.
... And later, after their entrees arrived:
Hawai'i's Bachelor: Wow, this is good.
Leake: We are not eating crab-stuffed lobster right now.
Hawai'i's Bachelor: For free! (Laughs.) It tastes good free. Because, usually, say I took someone on a date. I would be paying for all this stuff.
Leake: Well, Sweetie Pie, you've got two hot girls with ya, and you ain't payin'.
Hawai'i's Bachelor: It tastes much better when you're not paying.
Leake: You've got to admit that both of us are prime candidates. And you're just not into us, and that's OK.
Hawai'i's Bachelor: I'm just not into anybody in general.
That just about says it all.
Tanya Bricking writes about relationships for The Advertiser and was moderator of the Hawai'i's Bachelor game. For comments about the game, reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.