Welcome back to the beach, betches! And while we’re at it, happy Halloween! Bachelor in Paradise is back yet again to show us four hours of footage that could have been an email. That this week’s episodes happen to coincide with the devil’s day is just good timing. If we’re already in the Bad Place, might as well revel in it, amiright? This did mean that I was forced to watch Monday night’s episode in between handing out Dollar General candy to small children. The parents didn’t appreciate their children’s “trick or treats” being drowned out by the sounds of a half-nude Shanae and a more-nude Jacob perverting the simple act of brushing teeth by turning it into some demented form of foreplay, but what can you do? I can only be me!
Speaking of haunted things, though ABC’s programming tells me I’ll be watching this godforsaken show through Thanksgiving, this week’s episodes felt very end-of-days. After all, the four horsemen of the apocalypse are famously famine, plague, and two twins from Long Island who will let you slurp tequila from their navels.
This must be why the women are doing their damnedest to trick the men into expressing genuine human emotion. Lol. Nice try, ladies. Eliza, Kate, and Genevieve all go the extra mile to get their guys in line. By “extra mile,” I mean they verbally box the guys into a corner and watch in real-time as their pea brains try to Cirque du Soleil their way out of admitting any sort of commitment.
It’s a nice try, but ladies, say it with me now: men are idiots. They just don’t have the critical thinking skills that women do. I once watched my best friend find out who was viewing her Facebook profile page—and how many times—by teaching herself computer code. AT A SORORITY PRE-MIXER. As she was taking shots of Jager and crafting monogrammed wall decor for her Little that could put HomeGoods to shame. I once watched my ex-boyfriend mistake a bowl of sour cream for soft-serve vanilla ice cream. Evolutionarily speaking, we are not the same
But what am I saying? You’re going to read all about it. Let’s get into it!
A Rose Ceremony? During Paradise? Groundbreaking.
More evidence of an impending apocalypse: Jesse Palmer gives us a rose ceremony within the first 20 minutes of the episode. Resolution? Forward momentum? On Bachelor in Paradise? It simply couldn’t be.
But Jesse is full of surprises tonight. He tells us that not only will there be a rose ceremony, but the women will be the ones handing out the roses.
SHANAE HEARING THE MEN ARE ON THE CHOPPING BLOCK THIS WEEK:
Back before split week (when humanity was still discovering fire and inventing the wheel), the guys were supposed to be the ones handing out the roses. ABC tries to frame it like they’re doing the OG ladies a favor. Sure, the producers may have emotionally waterboarded them for a week, but at least they have the roses tonight! I’m sure that decision had everything to do with their compassionate response toward human suffering and nothing at all to do with wanting Victoria to implode her love life.
She is in quite the pickle. On-screen, she’s told us multiple times about her strong urge to settle down and procreate. She just doesn’t know who to choose! On the one hand, she has Alex, a man who could impregnate you with a single, smoldering glance. On the other hand, she has Johnny, who thinks cutting out buzzwords from magazines (“PASSION,” “INTEGRITY,” “GIRL BOSS” ) and gluing them to a vision board is the same thing as having a five-year plan. Yeah. That’s really a tough decision there.
Rose Ceremony Couples:
- Serene picks Brandon
- Danielle picks Zaddy
- Eliza picks Rodney
- Genevieve picks Aaron
- Jessenia picks Andrew
- Brittany picks Tyler
- Kate picks Logan
- Shanae picks Jacob
- Victoria picks Johnny
- Aussie Hottie picks Alex
Unpopular opinion: I’m thrilled Alex will continue to grace our television screens. I know Aussie Hottie only chose him because producers were threatening to load her bags with Spencer’s used sex toys should she not comply with their pre-planned storylines, and that his presence will surely trigger an existential crisis in Johnny, but it’s worth it. That face was made specifically for my viewing pleasure.
A Swarm Of
Locusts Losers Descend Upon The Beach
First Jesse Palmer gives us a rose ceremony, then Hayden from Gabby and Rachel’s season makes his Paradise debut. You can practically smell the sulfur in the air. The end is near. My favorite thing about Hayden’s return is that he was too scared to attend the Tell All, but will follow production to a secluded beach in Mexico where no one can hear him scream. Again, where are the critical thinking skills?
For those of you who don’t remember, Hayden was the guy who called Gabby and Rachel—ya know, THE LEADING WOMEN OF HIS SEASON—“bitches,” and then tried to use his terminally ill dog as a living shield to defend his character during rose ceremonies. You hear that, women of Paradise? You traveled all the way to Mexico just to date a guy you could have met in the comments section of a Russian bot’s IG post (he’s the one leaving sexually harassing messages).
Shanae’s like “What are your core values?”, and I’m interested to see how he tries to spin overt misogyny into a quirky personality trait. Do go on.
He eventually asks Kate to go on a date with him. She accepts, not so much because she’s actually interested in him, but because she’s playing a verbal game of chicken with Logan and wants to see if he’ll drive straight into the oncoming traffic of his emotions for her, or if he’ll veer left. One guess as to what he chooses.
I will say, Kate deserves the Nobel Peace Prize for sitting through that date and not committing a violent crime.
HAYDEN: I paid the vet six figures and lent him a copy of Dr. Frankenstein’s lab notes, but the good news is that even though Rambo now looks like an extra from Pet Sematary, at least he can live long enough to watch me vacation in Mexico for an undisclosed amount of time.
HAYDEN: Yeah, I called Gabby “rough around the edges,” but what I meant by that is she’s not a serious person and I don’t take women seriously. Sorry! I don’t take Gabby seriously. And also women.
HAYDEN: Did I call the Bachelorettes bitches? I couldn’t tell you, and neither can the concrete video footage that shows me doing it.
HAYDEN: And if I did call them a bunch of bitches—not saying I did!!—but if I had done that, it’s only because they weren’t there for the right reasons. Not like me, obviously.
And to think, she could have just settled for Logan’s lukewarm attention!
Hayden was not the only
locust loser to pollute the beach. On Tuesday night, the twins from Gabby and Rachel’s season show up and turn the island into their own personal frat party. They take Shanae and Aussie Hottie on a double date. I stopped taking notes right around when Justin stuck a ping pong ball up his butt and Shanae turned Joey into a human-sized burrito.
But the most shocking return happened on Monday night, when Justin of Justin/Genevieve/Aaron love triangle fame waltzed back into Paradise to steal Rodney’s girl.
“I’m dying to know, why’d you come back?”, Jesse Palmer asks, as if production didn’t physically shove Justin down the beach themselves.
Look, I have no problem with Justin getting a second shot at love, especially when Genevieve did him so dirty the first time around. But there are rules to this franchise. People can’t just come back after being voted off the island, let alone receive a date card! If we let Justin back, who’s next? Pizza Pete? I’m not supposed to listen to another minute of Mr. It’s-Not-Delivery-It’s-DiGornio without my therapist’s written consent.
Justin says that he’s here for one person, and one person only: Eliza. Even though he dated Genevieve before, he was really waiting for Eliza the whole time. Meanwhile, Eliza sees Justin’s interest as a way to test her relationship with Rodney. Like Kate, she plays her own game of emotional chicken. She wants Rodney to tell her not to go on the date, because it would emotionally devastate him. Instead, he acts mature and rational. Boo, you whore.
They go on a date, leaving Rodney to sit alone by the bonfire amongst 20 other couples. I love that everyone is just gathered around the bonfire waiting for Rodney’s life to implode. Do we think they’ll throw spoiled fruit and excess tequila at him if his anguish isn’t entertaining enough?
Unfortunately, we get no resolution from the date. Eliza decides that she wants to date both men now, and that has everything to do with her genuine romantic feelings for two individuals, and not her utter panic at having to engage in conflict management. I’m picking up what you’re putting down, Liza.
Genevieve & Aaron Exhaust Me
The above statement is not a subtitle so much as me giving a wellness check to my readers. ABC has been force-feeding us the Genevieve/Aaron love saga for almost this entire season, and you know what?
Rooting for this couple is like rooting for the end of Daylight Saving Time, a thing that also shrouds us in darkness and is ultimately pointless. The problem with these two is that they conflate sustainable love with passion. And I’m not talking about “passion” as it’s defined by Merriam-Webster, I’m talking about “passion” as it’s defined by Stephenie Meyer.
^Aaron and Genevieve in between rounds of Skinny Girl margs
They spend the majority of this week’s episodes arguing. Justin returns and Genevieve gives, perhaps, a too-detailed account of his history on Paradise. Aaron storms off. Genevieve cries. They fight by a daybed over Aaron’s wanting to bro-out with the boys. Aaron storms off. Genevieve cries. Genevieve threatens to leave Paradise. Aaron storms off. Genevieve cries. Are you sensing the pattern here? These two communicate like they are speaking through cups attached by a string across adjoining windows instead of directly at each others’ faces. This is what you get, Genny, for dating a man who has a tiny tattoo behind his ear!
If I’m being honest, I’ve never liked Aaron. Last summer, I wrote in a recap that I think he has a gross savior complex and that his rhetoric on the show is not only problematic, but toxic and misogynistic. At that time, he painted himself as the “defender” of women by standing up for their honor (honor that was only violated when they expressed interest in men that weren’t him) by calling guys he viewed as disrespectful and less than names like “little bitch boy” and “fucking pussy.” Yes, I can literally feel how much you respect my gender, Aaron. It’s really evident in the way you hurl feminized slurs at other men to make them feel less masculine. The feminist movement needs more allies like you!
This summer, it seems Aaron is up to his same tricks. Instead of using feminized insults, he tries to discredit Genevieve’s feelings by calling her “crazy.” “You really need to talk to her,” Victoria says. “Well, is she making sense or talking crazy?”, he responds.
ME GETTING TRIGGERED IN MY LIVING ROOM:
I know Genevieve is annoying and prone to crying, but she literally asked for five seconds of your time to tell you that she loves you. You’re the one who freaked out on her and called her—incorrectly!—a gaslighter because she interrupted your time with the guys. Buddy, I’m about to light YOU up.
Meanwhile, Genevieve is reacting to this fight as if she is the one hostage the armed assailant just let go. She runs off to pack her bags and actually locks both her friends and production out of the room so they don’t dissuade her from leaving.
I’ll spare you the agonizing details, but the this fight results in Genevieve, bags packed and seconds from getting in the Uber, screaming at Aaron that she’s unhappy and Aaron screaming back that HE’S UNHAPPY TOO, OKAY. Then, somehow, what follows those admissions is that they love each other and both decide to stay. Fuck watching Michael Meyers mutilate babysitters and torture Jamie Lee Curtis. This relationship is the scariest thing I’ve seen all year.
And on that note, I’m outtie! See you all next week!
Images: ABC/Craig Sjodin; Giphy (8)