90 Day Fiancé
“Three’s a Party” is the rare 90 Day Fiancé episode that beautifully dovetails the messy drama of every couple into a beautiful climax. No one comes out of this episode looking great, and we’re finally given the relationship-ending conversations we’ve wanted these couples to have since day one. Well, I guess Amira and Andrew come out of it okay, but that’s only because they aren’t featured this week.
The biggest blowup comes from Stephanie and Ryan. Things were already escalating between them before there was a hint at this major conflict, but it wasn’t clear why they were fighting. Finally, we learn that Ryan didn’t use a condom during sex as Stephanie asked. Producers, of course, show us the scene we all remember of Stephanie specifically telling Ryan she wanted to use the glow-in-the-dark condoms she ordered until she could trust him again. At the time, Ryan agreed and seemed to understand Stephanie’s need to rebuild trust. That’s what the entire cell-phone conversation was about!
So Ryan’s excuse, that they hadn’t used condoms in the past so he didn’t think he needed to, doesn’t matter. In the context of this trip, Stephanie said she required condoms for consent and Ryan knowingly broke that boundary. So it’s fair that Stephanie called him out. It makes sense that she would make sure he didn’t steal anything and further break her trust. She had just experienced a major violation and was reaching out to anyone who would listen for support, so even her call to Ryan’s cousin Harris doesn’t seem totally out of line when you consider what she’s gone through. Perhaps Ryan didn’t realize how serious Stephanie was about the condom thing. Still, he handled her questions so badly it didn’t give them any opportunity to clear it up. Stephanie was left with only her psychic to call (although, I do aspire to someday have a psychic on call at any hour of the night).
After finally pushing Mike to yet another brink, Natalie was the other person left to find answers on her own. Mike all but broke up with her when Natalie suggested they go back to therapy together and he said she should try going on her own. Mike has no patience left for Natalie, but it’s understandable. After everything they’ve been through and all their other problems, Natalie suddenly brings up an issue from over a year before: When Mike went to his female friend’s wedding, he slept over her house the night before. Mike has explained that this woman is just his friend, oh and also, she was getting MARRIED the next day and he slept on the couch. Mike has tried to provide reassurance over the issue time and time again, but Natalie escalates the accusations to lying and cheating, so what’s the point?
Natalie can’t seem to understand why Mike doesn’t want to marry her and she’s looking for any excuse. Sadly, she doesn’t realize that her personality and behavior are the issue, not Mike’s married female friend. Mike has been manipulative in dangling the engagement ring in front of Natalie, but I think he also sincerely realizes Natalie doesn’t like anything about him. It seems like Mike wanted to see how they would get along in America, and Natalie wanted to see if she could change Mike into the man she actually wanted the second she got to America.
I really hope Natalie goes back home. These two are just hurting each other at this point. As 90 Day Fiancé: Happily Ever After? has shown us, resentment isn’t a great foundation for marriage. The couples this season at least seem aware of that and none of them are eager to rush into anything. Look at Jovi and Yara, my previously perfect couple! They’ve only experienced minor obstacles, but it feels like Yara really would drop all her stuff and go back home in a second!
Yara really does not put up with any of Jovi’s behavior, and watching her whisper how much she hates him while they danced was an instant classic 90 Day moment. I still have some faith in them, though, because Jovi’s family really embraces Yara at the party. If Jovi wasn’t so drunk, I think he could’ve helped introduce her and really made her realize she has a community around this pregnancy. But no, Jovi is just thinking about himself. If Yara does go back home, she’s at least doing it with her and her baby in mind.
Brandon and Jovi are actually pretty similar in that regard. Brandon is also only thinking about himself, but he uses his parents as a projection for his own irresponsibility. He laughed about the pullout method and how they didn’t want to use protection; now he tries to blame Julia for their pregnancy scare. It’s even more irritating because it wasn’t even a big deal! If he had listened to Julia and gotten a test before talking to his parents, they could’ve just moved on. Instead, Brandon’s first instinct is to tell mommy and daddy that Julia might be pregnant.
Brandon’s father is the only person with any sense in this entire narrative now. He was right about Brandon needing to move out and he also thought Brandon’s decision to tell them was silly. When Brandon decided to be a child and play around with the results, his dad’s straightforward “I do not have time for this nonsense” reaction was my favorite moment of the episode. Even Julia knew not to waste time with jokes and cleared things up. This should be a moment that makes Brandon grow up, but I don’t think it will.
Rebecca is in a similar state of arrested development. Even though Zied is no longer a blanket or photo on a debit card or a coaster, but a living, human man who sits in front of her, she can’t accept that he loves her. She’s still upset over Zied’s reaction to a young girl being nice to him in the last episode. They have a tense car ride that makes for an awkward introduction for her son and grandkids. This eventually leads to another conversation where Rebecca demands to know what Zied will do in the future and how.
Like Stephanie and Ryan and their “devil’s work”-psychic situation, Zied can’t really fight against future arguments. Maybe he will want a kid years from now. Rebecca can’t actually stop him from divorcing her and doing that, even if she commands it. All she can do is trust in their relationship. While Stephanie gave Ryan clear directions to earn that trust, Rebecca doesn’t seem to know what Zied can do to reassure her. Instead, everything Zied does becomes a trigger for her insecurities.
Finally, Hazel and Tarik were also in this episode. I guess they come out of it looking the best, but they don’t really do much. They decide to get drunk and tell Tarik’s friend that they’re pursuing an open relationship. It is every newly open couple’s right to be annoying about it for at least a few weeks, so I guess this is why they decided to do this. Their friend, understandably, raises a few concerns, but they don’t really address anything except making it clear that Tarik isn’t pressuring her.
While the trope of the polyamorous man pushing his monogamous girlfriend or wife into an open relationship is very real, it’s so clear that’s not the case for Hazel. Hazel has shaped the rules and dialogue around their open relationship the entire time. Hazel is the one who really, really wants a girlfriend. The question is, does she want a girlfriend more than she wants to be married to Tarik?