Bachelor in Paradise
It’s time we admit a few things about Bachelor in Paradise. First, they do not have enough footage to fill four hours a week. CUT AN HOUR OUT! How many minutes of a man walking sadly on a beach throwing sand into the ocean do we need? Second, and this is probably the most important thing:
WATCHING MEN BEHAVE IN A TOXIC WAY ISN’T DRAMA OR INTRIGUE. IT’S HARMFUL. JUST BECAUSE YOU PUT IT ON TELEVISION AND PUT A FUN CRAB WALKING THROUGH THE FRAME DOESN’T MAKE IT ANYTHING OTHER THAN AWFUL.
Bachelor in Paradise decided to put another toxic, gross, violent man in a situation where he had access to women who are looking to ignore men’s flaws to find love on a deadline. This time, Leo lashed out at Joe and Kendall after his gaslighting campaign. Why are we doing this? Who decided this was a good idea? It’s fucking stressful to watch anyone fight and everyone looks tense and uncomfortable with Leo being there. Let’s go back to the beginning of the episode and figure out how the fuck we got here.
The episode opens with Kendall still talking to Leo about him kissing Chelsea. Kendall needs to just WALK AWAY. When confronted with gaslighting, some women think that they can just convince the man to tell the truth and the problem will go away. Oh, Kendall, it won’t go away. A huge part of your personality is obviously based on being the logical, clear-headed one, but this ain’t the one, girlie. Joe comes to pull Kendall away to save her from the poisonous feedback loop. When she sits down with Joe, she’s still trying to figure out what is going on in Leo’s head. She thought if she could just tell him why hurting people is bad — DO YOU HEAR YOURSELF, KENDALL? She makes out with Joe when she realizes that the only thing going on in his head is visions of dancing giardiniera.
Before the rose ceremony, Benoit tries to understand what’s going on in Jenna’s head. Another fool’s errand. He has a perfectly legitimate gripe. He’s upset that when Jenna dumped him she told him it was for his own benefit. She told him it was what was best for him. He’s an adult man with shorts and socks. Do not presume you know what’s best for him. He tries to tell her that she dismissed his feelings and was complicating the situation. Jenna turns on the waterworks and starts yelling, “MAYBE I AM COMPLICATED.” The second a drunk white girl starts screaming “MAYBE I AM COMPLICATED,” run.
Jenna runs to Jordan to tell her that Benoit made her cry. She completely leaves out that Benoit was upset and trying to work through their breakup and deal with how dismissive she was of his feelings. Nah. Nope. None of that. Benoit yelled at me. Jordan tries to storm over to Benoit to let him know that making a lady cry is bad.
Once in fifth grade, I won a debate in my humanities class and the girl I beat was convinced I cheated. She thought I had my best friends fill out my scores before I delivered my talking points. I said she had no idea what she was talking about and she was just mad she lost. She dispatched her seventh-grade boyfriend, who sounded exactly like Homestar Runner, to get in my face about it. All he could muster was, “If I ever hear you’re talking about my girlfriend, you’re gonna wish you never heard my voice.”
That’s basically what this Jordan/Benoit fight was.
The next morning all the couples are deep in sensual bliss and Chelsea is the only one who has a rose up for grabs. So here come the untethered penises. Benoit convinces himself that Chelsea is the real woman for him and he’s never felt this way before. They make out in a hammock.
The date card for the day is for Eric. He takes Angela on a date to a hotel suite with a seafood platter, a cheese cart, a bathtub full of 12 Champagne bottles, and a sundae the size of a toddler. This is the first date I’ve ever seen that I would go on. This is my ideal date. Seafood. Platter. The most adorable thing is Eric cracking up while they wheel in cheese cart after dessert cart after cheese cart. While on the date, Angela and Eric pledge to be all-in. Is this irony or foreshadowing?
Chris tries to show Krystal how much he cares … by asking her to do her job for free. PAY HER, CHRIS.
Back at the resort, Kendall goes to chat with John and kisses him. I think John and Kenny might be tied for most kisses in Paradise. John might surpass Kenny by the end of the episode. Kendall immediately feels bad and runs off to tell Joe. Kendall tells herself and Joe that she’s only kissing other people because she likes Joe so much. I cannot with these people. They both confess that they’re falling for each other.
It’s time for the cocktail party. Leo decides to do a toast. Someone stop this. This toast is basically “Kendall is a bitch and you’re all phony.” He calls Joe “Grocery Store Bitch” and that Taylor Street came out. That’s a Chicago reference. Joe gets riiiiiiiiiiiiiight up in his face, and Leo’s big move is to throw a drink in his face. THIS AIN’T HOUSEWIVES, BITCH. Leo is escorted out and the cocktail party continues. Colton gives Tia a plate of hot dogs and they eat one Lady and the Tramp–style. Why do they keep doing this? STOP KISSING WITH FOOD IN YOUR MOUTHS. Especially hot dogs.
It’s time for the rose ceremony, all the usual couples stay together and it’s time for Chelsea’s wild card rose. She picks John and John thinks it’s because he’s half-Asian and her ex-boyfriend is half-Asian. Is he fetishizing … himself? Oh, Chelsea.
Connor, Benoit, and David all are headed home.
It’s a new morning in Paradise and there are a few new female arrivals. The men have the roses and Jenna sums up the problem with that: “You can’t come to paradise and expect the men to be any better. They’re men.” The first woman to come in is Olivia and she’s got a FULL ON LEWK. She was on Arie’s season … I guess? She takes a few guys aside and everyone is locked down. Except for John. Oh, Chelsea. She takes him to a child’s quinceañera and they make out.
The next female arrival starts a bit more drama. Up next is Cassandra and she’s so hot, everyone loses their fucking minds. She looks like a baby Morena Baccarin and she’s wearing so much makeup in what has to be 90-degree weather. She’s not here to play. She takes a few guys aside and they tell her she’s locked down. Then she takes Eric aside, and suddenly, he’s more open to new possibilities. He agrees to the date.
This is Defcon 1. This is relationship and emotional Defcon 1. Eric tells Angela that while he did say last night that he was all-in, he woke up with a newfound horniness for Cassandra’s booty. He needs to pursue other options to know if what he has with Angela is real.
I kept asking my boyfriend last night, “Why don’t these people just agree to date other people while still being together? They all met six days ago. Just say, ‘Yeah, you’re my boyfriend but kiss other people if you want. The second you have feelings, let’s talk about it. You smooch. I smooch. We good?’ It would solve a lot of problems.”
While Eric gets ready for his date, Angela stands around in the pool with a few of the other people as a coven of sadness. Astrid says that if one couple goes down, what’s to stop the other ones too? Angela retreats to her room to weep while Cassandra and Eric walk off to their date.
TO BE CONTINUED …