And just like that, ladies and loverboys, it is over. Larl is no more. That is the couple portmanteau I just came up with for Lindsay and Carl before watching this episode and now is precisely the only time I will ever get to use it. RIP, Larl. RIP, my heart. RIP, humanity.
As the episode starts, Carl tells us that he and Lindsay spent every night that week hanging out together, even though the previous weekend all they did was fight. What he does not say is whether any of those nights together included hookups of various intensity, because last we heard all they had done was make out and fingerbang. This isn’t just a prurient detail (though, inquiring minds …). It would shine some more light on why he chickened out on breaking up with her last week, only to spend all week with her and then decide that they’re better off as friends.
When Carl arrives at the beach, he talks to Kyle about the situation. He says that he and Lindsay are great as friends but when it veers into romantic territory, the fighting and stuff gets too intense for him. It seems like what Carl wanted was for them to just hang out as friends and then bone at the end of the night. Lindsay, however, seems to want something more like a traditional commitment.
Carl does not want to do the dumping because he always gets too afraid to end things, especially with someone whom he cares about as much as Lindsay and also because they are going to a Miami Vice night at a local restaurant. If Carl wanted to have a teary, drunken conversation in costume, then he would be a Real Housewife, because that happens with a regularity that even fiber pills can’t promise.
The Miami Vice night is a little weird; I thought it would be a party either at a bar or someone’s house. But no, it’s a dinner? Where they all sit around looking Miami Vice with each other while eating scallops? The costume winner, of course, is Lindsay, who’s calling herself Debra and is dressed in a power suit, a floral blouse, and a long, curly, teased wig that makes her look like an extra right out of Working Girl, which is about the best compliment I can ever give someone. Everyone else looks fine. Kyle, in his signature mullet, white suit, and pastel T-shirt, looks fine, but more like fooooooiiiiiiiinnnnnneeeee. For my money, Kyle is the most handsome man on Bravo. Don’t @ me. (Unless you’re sending naked pics of Kyle.)
I also think that Carl is quite handsome and lovely, but we have never really seen him treat women that well. How he treats Lindsay is very reminiscent of how he handled both Paige and the Wirkus, his former housemate and a cousin of the Kraken, in former seasons. Instead of sitting Lindsay down and having a talk with her when he is certain what is going on, he just starts to push her away, hoping she’ll do the heavy lifting of breaking up with him. We see this mostly when she comes into his room after the party to give him a goodnight kiss and he doesn’t pay her any attention whatsoever. If she said something, he would be like, “What? I was sleeping!” But dude, if you were really into this girl, you could have mustered up at least a little smooch.
The real bad behavior is when everyone goes to Barry’s Bootcamp the next day. For those of you who haven’t been, it’s a combination of treadmill running and weight work in a red-tinted room with a gorgeous instructor yelling motivation at you while 50 other 30-somethings with too much disposable income all give each other the eye. It’s heaven. (But now I am too old for it and the running makes me feel like I have hip dysplasia, like your Aunt Millie’s old dog.) Carl has been flirting with Sarah, one of the instructors there, for a few months while he’s been taking her classes. He and Kyle go to get a smoothie (Barry’s has the best smoothies), and Carl decides now is the right time to ask Sarah out on a date. She says yes, but that is beside the point.
The point is that he is already entangled with Lindsay, and it’s best to give her the courtesy of making sure that is squared away before starting something new. Carl is grabbing a life preserver even before he’s even jumped off the boat. Then, after Sarah says yes, she comes around while they’re with Lindsay and is flirting with Carl and they’re being all handsy. Could we have not predicted this? Could we not have spared Lindsay from the indignity?
After all of this, he finally sits her down and says that “this should be a friendship.” Lindsay is confused because Carl was the one who decided that they should try the romantic stuff but then just as quickly changed his mind. Carl says she moved too fast and it was too much pressure on him. Lindsay asks him if he wants a relationship at all, and he says, “I’m not looking for the relationship you want.”
That is a completely fair assessment of the situation, and I think it’s right for Carl to end it now rather than stringing it out and hurting her more. However, as Lindsay points out, they have had conversations where Lindsay said she was looking for someone to marry, settle down with, and have babies with as soon as possible, and if that isn’t what Carl was signing up for he should have kept things platonic. I don’t think this was all Carl’s fault, though he is taking most of the blame here. Lindsay was, and will always be, very intense in a relationship. She seems like the kind of person who is always testing her partner and then screaming at him when he fails whatever arbitrary test it is that she set.
Still, I was impressed that Lindsay really kept her cool during the whole talk until Carl says, “Let’s just be adults about this and be, ‘Yeah, let’s have fun. More Life.’” Lindsay has the only correct response, which is to get up and walk away and say, “Once you’ve ‘More Life’-ed me …” To invoke his failed catchphrase of old, which sounds like something a Barry’s instructor would have emblazoned on her sports bra, is just some kind of black magic that should be banned from the earth.
While Carl and Lindsay are breaking up, it seems like another couple is making up, and that is last year’s castmate Jordan and new castmate Jules. Supposedly Jules got into the group via Hannah, who says that she met Jules through Jordan. Jules says she met Jordan while on a trip to New York when she still lived in Chicago, and they had a tryst. When she was moving to New York, they were supposed to hang out, but each claims that the other then ghosted. So exactly when did this introduction to Hannah happen if they haven’t been talking since she arrived in New York?
This whole thing is a little curious. If you remember Jordan from last season, it always seemed like he was lying about hooking up with girls. He eventually told everyone that his penis doesn’t work correctly, which is why he was lying about sex. Some of the housemates speculated that he lied about sex because he’s a virgin. There is another fan theory that Jordan is in the closet and that is what is causing this.
When Jordan arrives as a replacement for Paige, who is spending the weekend with her boyfriend who does not want to be on camera, he and Jules quickly squash their beef before flirting again. After the Miami Vice party, they end up in Jules’ bed together and get it on. We see their conversation afterwards, and it seems like Jordan didn’t finish and Jules wonders if that even makes it sex.
While Jordan is at Barry’s with everyone else, they ask if the two of them did it, and Jordan says he would rather keep it between him and Jules. Meanwhile, Jules is at paddleboard yoga (a combination of two tortuous activities at once that I would not wish upon anyone) spilling tea like it’s a Loverboy giveaway. (Guys, Loverboy is a sparkling hard iced tea. Don’t you know?) She says that Jordan can have sex and get hard, but he can’t get off, which is leaving her very sexually frustrated.
There is a semantic argument to be had about whether or not Jules and Jordan had sex. I would say yes, because as soon as P goes in V, I think we can consider that intercourse even if one or both parties doesn’t reach climax. As many women know, sex happens at insertion, not orgasm. However, Jordan’s motivations for all of this seem really suspect. Is he doing it with Jules to prove to the world that he is both straight and has a functional wiener? Maybe. I’m sure the show certainly had some negative ramifications for his dating life in NYC that he wants to correct.
The funny thing is that their tryst did exactly the opposite. Now we all think that he can’t get off and maybe, just maybe, that’s because he’s gay. At least the virgin rumor is dead, though. There could be a variety of factors for his less-than-three-raindrops performance, though. Of course alcohol could play a part. As could certain medications, like antidepressants or antihistamines, which make it very difficult for some people to achieve climax, though they can achieve biological arousal. Maybe it’s performance anxiety, since he knows that there are cameras and this is going to be on national television? Maybe his penis was cursed by a gypsy woman he ran down in the street? None of us can say, really. None of us can say. But there is one thing for certain: Jordan is hiding something.
Hannah is not hiding from Luke, who is all up in her grill this week. They have yet to go out on their date, but Hannah says she needs to tell her boyfriend/non-boyfriend Armand that she is going to go out with him, hoping that’s the kick in the pants he needs to make their arrangement exclusive. However, Jules then tells her she overheard Armand telling Lindsay at the Fourth of July party that they were just “casual.” Hannah then starts to spiral and thinks she should not tell him about Luke after all. If they’re casual, why would she?
I think this is a mistake. I think that Hannah should just tell Armand how she feels and talk about their relationship. Playing games only ends up one place: breaking up with your best friend on the balcony while everyone else in the house listens below. Did you catch when Hannah told everyone to “Shut the fuck up!” so she could eavesdrop on their breakup conversation? That is what I love most about Hannah. She’s the funny one. Paige was missed this week even though she has done little this season. It’s like when your Glade PlugIn runs out of juice. You can tell that something is off but you don’t know what. That is what this episode was like without Paige.
But Hannah. Oh, Hannah. She also told Jordan that it was weird not having him in the house, “because it’s fun.” When Jules asked if Jordan wanted to relive memories in his old bed, Hannah said, “Oh, he has no memories in that bed.” I love Hannah, and I only want the best for her, which is to shag Luke exactly once and then get married to Armand, even though he looks like a wax figurine come to life.