Well, that was a bit of a letdown, wasn’t it? I feel like Ashley I. because nothing will live up to how perfect Sunday’s episode was. Sunday’s episode was the Jared of episodes, but without the patchy beard, and it manages a better restaurant than the Providence Mollusk Depot. So, it was nothing like Jared. Last night’s episode was the Joshua of episodes. It was fine. This episode did feature Tenley and Carly doing synchronized swimming on their couch and their vaginas being blocked out with giant black boxes. Were their pussies out? Paradise, indeed!
We’ve got all the usual couples with the new additions of Nick and Ashley S. and Dan and Amber. Jared spends his days looking out from his widow’s walk as he watches the mists roll in from the sea. He is one melancholy dude. Bro, just go home. You’re not excited to be here. You had two girls throwing themselves at you, but you’re content to sit around like a world-weary fisherman. I guess the memory of all the oysters who gave their lives at the Providence Bivalve Factory is weighing heavy on your soul.
Ashley I. tries to bond with Joe hoping that they can commiserate over their misery together. (Someone check if that’s the title of an R&B album from the ’90s, because if it isn’t, I’m going back in time to record it with Babyface and Pebbles.) Joe says that Samantha did a total 180 because she couldn’t handle the drama, and he can’t absorb all day, and they had a wonderful two or three day—
HOLD THE PHONE. You’ve known her for three days, and you’re tripping this hard? Oof. Listen, I understand that you got a hand job in a hot tub, a HTHJ, but get it together, man. I was once a 16-year-old girl with an online journal where I pasted AIM conversations with boys I liked so I could save them, and I was not this thirsty. Yeesh. It doesn’t help that Samantha doesn’t seem to have a personality. Neither Jared nor Samantha has a personality, and they’ve become vessels for the affections of two gullible lonely weirdos: Ashley I. and Joe.
While Joe is trying to plot Samantha’s demise in a kind of terrifying way, Ashley I. is deep in a full-blown crying meltdown. Thinking about, talking about, seeing, or remembering the existence of Jared is all Ashley I. needs to start crying. Sometimes she can make it an hour or three without falling apart. Because there’s nothing imperfect about Jared, the fact that he doesn’t like her must be all Ashley I.’s fault, and she will compare every man she dates after this moment to Jared.
Ashley I.? Can I call you Ashley I.? I need you to gather up all those feelings you have about Jared and toss them into the sea because he is not worth it. He’s an appropriately nice man who looks like he’d be a background extra on Boy Meets World. He was kinda cool to you for like six hours and looks like he’d be modeling an ion bracelet in a Skymall catalogue. Hook up with someone else.
At breakfast, I think, how are their meals structured here? Carly brings Mikey a date card, and he asks Juelia. How amazing and messed up would it have been if he asked someone else? Juelia and Mikey’s date has too much pressure put on it from all the other blonde women. Carly just wants it to work out because Juelia needs to find someone who will be loyal to her and her daughter. Twelvely says that because Juelia is a single mother, the possibility of an overnight date is a big deal. Yeah, hi. Mikey and Juelia met like five days ago, but sure, he’s going to be her true love forever. “Out of everyone here, Juelia deserves to find love; if there’s not love out there for Juelia, the rest of us are screwed.” Ashley I.? Get it together. This is TOO MUCH PRESSURE.
We all cool? Everyone relaxed? Juelia, how are you feeling going into this?
“If I fall in love today, it will change my life and my daughter’s life forever.” OH MY GOD. EVERYBODY, SETTLE DOWN. You’re supposed to fall in love today?! Okay, well, Venus is in retrograde, so good luck with that!
Juelia and Mikey go to Guadalajara on a private plane, and she never puts on her seatbelt because she spend the whole flight in his lap making out. They go see a lucha libre wrestling match. Was this date a plant by my male co-workers and my brother, who are trying to get me into wrestling? Terrance? Matt? Jake? Did you do this? After the date, Host Chris sends them an envelope full of a bunch of keys, and if they want, they can bang.
They choose to bang … with the lucha libre masks on.
Meanwhile, back at the resort, Joe tries to confront Samantha, and her two choices are: get all lovey-dovey with him and eventually get engaged, or see her entire world burn down. Hi, women. These are your options when a man has perceived you’ve wronged him. You can have sex with him until he’s not mad anymore, or he will ruin your life. Apparently, Joe went to the Gamergate school of conflict-resolution.
Samantha is one of those girls who in high school would talk about you behind your back about how sensitive you are and how you always think people are out to get you, and she would say it to someone who she knew would report it back to you. And when you finally confronted her, she’d be all, “I don’t know what you’re talking about. I didn’t tell Tabatha that you were kinda touchy because your boobs are asymmetrical while we were watching Blue Crush in her basement. You’re just starting all this drama for no reason. You love starting drama,” while the depth faded from her round eyes and they became more sharklike and bored through you. And you’re just sitting there like, “You guys rented Blue Crush without me?”
It’s a cliché, but people who say they hate drama secretly LOVE drama, and people who say that they don’t have drama in their lives ALWAYS HAVE DRAMA AROUND THEM. If a woman has a framed poster of Marilyn Monroe and says she hates drama, RUN.
Ashley I. gives Joe advice about the whole situation because Venus is in retrograde and she whines, “Why am I the only girl who understands you?” If you’re ever asking a man that, RUN.
At the Camp Paradise bonfire, Joe tries to reintroduce himself to Samantha, but she’s not interested because Faux Tom Hardy has arrived, and he’s got one thing on his mind. Samantha. What is it with this girl? Do these men have drama-blindness? Joe tries to do something close to warning him, but it doesn’t work and Samantha says yes.
TO BE CONTINUED …
Um … ABC, the strength of these cliff-hanger endings is diminished if you use them every week for situations that aren’t actually cliff-hangers. But hey, it’s your show.