Below Deck Recap: Rhylee Cries Witch Hunt

Below Deck

Season 7 Episode 14
Editor’s Rating 4 stars

Below Deck

Season 7 Episode 14
Editor’s Rating 4 stars
Photo: Bravo

Rhylee gets a lot of shit on this show for being sensitive, and she is, but you know who’s more sensitive than a flesh wound swollen with bacteria? All the men. Especially Ashton and Kevin. The guest chef, Justine, pops into the kitchen to tell Kevin that everyone’s talking about him behind his back. Which he should have known, this being (1) a workplace, and (2) a reality show. But he takes it to heart, and accuses her of being a common land chef who just flips burgers and takes photos of them.

Kevin now has to prepare sushi for Justine and her friends in a fit of anger. He asks Courtney if he should put cream cheese in it, and she reminds him that they send back dairy. Kevin: “Oh fuck.”

Kate tells Rhylee that Ashton told Captain Lee it was Rhylee’s fault they fished in illegal waters. Rhylee is incensed.

Captain Lee pads through the kitchen to complain to whoever’s around about having to sleep on the couch. If he were the primary, he would have told Jamie to “get the fuck off the boat.” Courtney’s like, I can’t believe the guest let you sleep on the couch! Lee says of course she did, this is her vacation — as though he really believes she deserves to be in his captain’s quarters on this ostentatious yacht in her caftans and oversized sunglasses because she happens to be here as a guest of other people footing the bill.

As Kevin tightens up his sushi rolls, Kate and Ashton begin transporting things to the beach for lunch. This leaves the rest of the deck crew to set up the slide. Brian starts to unroll it with Rhylee helping him, but she’s sassy, which frustrates him. He calls Tanner over to help, which frustrates her. Everyone on this team needs to take a moment to say, this is a rubber slide being unrolled on a yacht for people on a reality show, and evaluate how much they really want to care about it.

Kate and Ashton manage to ride to the beach together without getting into a fight. Kate: “If I didn’t do a job every time I worked with someone I didn’t like, I’d be unemployed.” Wouldn’t we all?

Wardrobes are meticulously applied to the guests’ bodies for the excursion to the beach. Molly wears a leopard bikini with sleeves. They stuff into the tender, and Ashton looks like he’s driving the Coachella water taxi. Of course, he can’t not comment on Molly’s looks. You’re always going to have good-looking people on yachts, he says, but Molly “is an absolute cracker.” He says he’s not going to cross the line with her but may “brush the line — is that a thing?”

As the guests bake under their beach tent with their dairy-free sushi, Ashton interrupts to tell them they can go snorkeling with the snorkel stuff they brought. They say, snorkeling? Like, who in their right mind would want to do a thing here in nature that they could only do while here in nature? We want to go take tacky pictures on the boat!

While Kevin makes dinner, Ashton poses for photos with Molly and Justine. He wears a neon short-sleeved shirt, completely unbuttoned and flapping in the breeze, while the girls hang off his shoulders and touch his bare chest. Between the abs and the yacht, the whole thing is embarrassingly obvious and is less #goals than the cover of an ’80s workout VHS — albeit with Captain Lee’s bored face visible through the boat window in the background. Lee sits in his wheelhouse, not trying to avoid being in the shot at all, laughing at how much horny Ashton is enjoying himself and trying to pretend not to.

The guests change into Intermix’s finest for dinner. Except Jamie, who may have died in her room — alone, by her own choice — because when Courtney goes to knock on her door “there was no answer or even rustling.”

Out on deck in the dark of night, Rhylee sits on a piece of machinery to speak with Ashton about why he told Lee the bad fishing trip was her fault. Ashton fixates on Kate telling Rhylee what he said in the wheelhouse. Rhylee tells Ashton that he should support her more as her boss, and Ashton says that the real problem Rhylee faces is being insecure. He says her body language gives off a negative vibe, which is pretty terrible. You can’t exactly blame the angle of her body on a whole group of greasy men collectively hating her and talking about it every chance they get. Rhylee says her insecurity isn’t the problem, rather “it is 100 percent exactly the way of the vibe on the fucking boat.” Ashton points at her and sends her to bed like a child.

In the kitchen, Kevin, who’s now “plating for the ’gram,” puts ceviche pieces on plates with tweezers. He rants about how “Justine will say something about maggots being on the plate” but “hashtag it looks nice,” as it goes out. Justine says it’s actually delicious and congratulates herself once more on being a chef.

There’s a moment at this dinner where one of the guests does something with a photo of Captain Lee on her phone, maybe for an Instagram story or Snapchat, but I’m too out of it to know offhand. The point is, as Bravo keeps hammering home, these are Phone People, Lesser Than Narcissists Walking Among the Rest of Mankind, whatever you want to call them. Dessert is a thin rectangular plate set with several different things, including deconstructed cheesecake. Molly, who apparently has been restraining herself this trip, says, “I’m gonna be annoying and take a picture.”

Tanner asks Brian if he should “make a move” on Kate tomorrow. “It’ll be pretty legendary,” he says. Dear Tanner: Lee sleeping on the couch is legendary, you hitting on Kate is called “nighttime.”

After dinner, Lee tells the guests he has to go to bed because he has work to finish. Which normally I’d say is bullshit but tonight may in fact be true since this time he has to find his jammies in his relocated belongings.

The next morning, Captain Lee struggles through his routine in the uncomfortable environment of the sky lounge. Rhylee pauses from furiously ripping tarps from the deck furniture to ask Lee what she can bring him. “Coffee would be nice, kiddo,” he tells her. As soon as Rhylee steals away from the broom closet for a coffee break of her own, Ashton requests an audience with Captain Lee for “quite a bit of a chat.”

Lee tells Ashton his temporary room made him feel like he’s been rolled up in a bedsheet and beaten with a baseball. As Lee sits there forlornly on his couch next to his pillow, Ashton tells him that he and his team hate Rhylee so much that they want to fire her and do the last two charters a man down. Lee says it would be ridiculous to fire someone with six days left in the season. (Meanwhile, on deck, Tanner to Brian: “I don’t want to call her a cancer.”)

After speaking with Rhylee and bitterly folding his flat sheet, he says he’s going to get some other viewpoints. “One hundred percent, this is a witch hunt,” Rhylee says with the utmost conviction. Well if yachting doesn’t work out for her, at least she can get a job on Fox News.

For breakfast, Kevin begrudgingly serves the guests pancakes and French toast that looks like it was made from Wonder Bread. He’s purposefully giving them a bad breakfast, he tells Courtney, because he hates them. Whipped cream? Blueberry garnishes? Bacon? Not for these jerks.

It’s hard to argue with him when at the table, the primary says to Simone, “Is there real maple syrup that came from a tree?” Simone says it’s from Canada. The primary says he doesn’t care where it’s from “as long as it’s not corn syrup.” Simone says it’s not, but hopefully she had no idea and it was Aunt Jemima.

Meanwhile, Lee’s investigation is underway. Brian tells him he would rather do the last two charters without her. Tanner actually gives Lee his line about Rhylee being “like a cancer on the boat.”

At breakfast, the primary now complains about an “unidentifiable funk” in his cabin. Maybe it was Jamie’s body rotting in the peasant’s quarters below him?

Ashton swans by the breakfast table fishing for furtive glances while Lee calls Kate up to talk about Rhylee. She tells Lee that the guys have ganged up against Rhylee unfairly and Ashton has joined their ranks instead of risen above and managed the situation. At the same time, she says, Rhylee also isn’t blameless.

In the crew quarters later, as Kate does laundry, Ashton confronts her about telling Rhylee he told Captain Lee that she messed up the fishing trip. Ashton says he expected privacy, and is “in complete disbelief.” This is dumb, given that this is his second season with Kate. Kate tells him firing Rhylee isn’t managing, it’s giving up on managing, which is true, though it’s not like Kate exactly manages Simone by these standards.

Kate tells Rhylee that Ashton told Captain Lee he wants to fire her. Rhylee says she doesn’t know what she’ll do if she gets fired from this job. The primaries leave $1,600 apiece in tips, which the crew is happy with. Lee says the deck team is a complete disaster, though, and he’s not sure how he’s going to handle it but “you can’t kick shit down the road and think it’s going to go away.”

Next week: Tanner and Kate may do it, Brian may break Courtney’s heart, and Kevin gets injured, hopefully not with the same flesh-eating bacteria Brian got.

Below Deck Recap: Rhylee Cries Witch Hunt