The Bachelorette Recap: Him?

The Bachelorette

Week Five
Season 19 Episode 5
Editor’s Rating 2 stars

The Bachelorette

Week Five
Season 19 Episode 5
Editor’s Rating 2 stars
Photo: Craig Sjodin/ABC

When I sign up to watch a show like The Bachelorette, I expect a few things: romantic trips to exotic locations that are the perfect place to fall in love, obstacle courses centered on the bachelorette’s childhood trauma, and bathtubs full of unusual liquids. I also reasonably believe that I’ll be watching a show about one (or two) women wearing mediocre-to-good gowns standing on ritualistic altars. What I absolutely did not sign up for was a television program whose main character was Logan.

Logan? Logan. LOGAN? LoGaN!!!! LOGAN. I’m sorry, I just want to make sure I’m getting this right: Logan?!?!??! We are here doing all of this for Logan? Did Gabby see literally any other man on this entire boat? The guy who brought two baby chicks and kissed both of them on the first night? Logan? Am I getting that right? We got more sweeping shots of Logan pensively walking around the ship, thinking about what he will do when Gabby obviously falls in love with him, than anyone getting a one-on-one date card. I don’t think we saw either Aven or Johnny open their one-on-one date cards, but we got to see Logan staring out into the sea. I will definitely be needing @BachelorData to run the numbers on this shit because things are skewed!

But really, how did we end up in a season that’s basically counterfeit FBoy Island instead of the fun, girlie-time romp we were promised? Where are our standout men? Where is our guy with a macho occupation and a sensitive hobby? No one here is a firefighter who does needlepoint! Where is our carpenter who came in seventh on The Great British Bake Off? A forklift driver who can ice-skate!! I’ll take someone with a fun shirt at this point. Even Grocery Store Joe popped, with a “unique” accent and a humble attitude. When we have a season of men who are just fine and one Logan, the show isn’t able to deliver anything other than emotional torture for our leads and an entire story line devoted to the most Gumby-looking Jason Mraz impersonator.

Let’s get to it.

It’s a new day and a new European country! The ladies are feeling great and hopeful despite not having any reason to believe that good things can happen to them. Welcome to Belgium, home of waffles and possible disappointment. The drama gets going early when Rachel’s group date card shows up and Logan’s name is on it because of course it is — he’s accepted like three roses by now. He decides that right before the group date is the perfect time to tell Rachel that he’s more interested in Gabby.

He saunters up to Rachel’s stateroom and tells her how honored he felt when he received a rose from her. Rachel says, “Well, that feels good to hear you say.” Oh no, Rachel. That’s just the beginning of his speech. He says that he’s been holding back because he felt a real connection with Gabby from the first date they went on and he’s been thinking about it ever since. Rachel, very reasonably, says that he should have brought this to her much earlier and Logan says, “I kept thinking, You’re crazy; look at Rachel, look at who she is.” And Rachel cuts him off and goes, “You don’t have to keep explaining it.” The scream I screamed.

Just a quick lesson for any men out there: If you’re trying to break up with someone, especially if you’re getting together with their friend, do not spend your time performatively beating yourself up about how beautiful and amazing the person you’re breaking up with is. Do not curse the gods for making you not attracted to the fantastic lady pilot. Damn you, Zeus!!

Within 15 minutes, Rachel has put on the free bathrobe and is crying on her bed. Jesse comes to Rachel’s door to pick her back up. You know who would have been perfect in this moment? Tayshia and Kaitlyn. This is nothing a DVD of Center Stage, your two best friends, and a pitcher of margaritas couldn’t fix, but Jesse doesn’t have those tools at his disposal so Rachel is choosing to cancel the group date. Girl, the men have already been dispatched! Just gently wander into their path of romantic destruction.

Meanwhile, the men are just walking around Bruges wondering when Rachel is going to show up. Is this part of the date? Do they have to find her? Could this be a Taken situation and Zach and Tyler will have to team up to save Rach — oh no, Jesse’s here. The date is canceled, everyone back on the ship!

It’s time for Logan to make his pitch to Gabby. I think the best way to sum up Logan’s point of view is when he says, “I’m so glad you got to sit here and hear me out.”

Hi, everyone, this is Ali’s landlord. I’m writing this because I discovered Ali wandering the halls of our building as if she had seen some sort of Lovecraftian monster that drives you insane once you perceive it. I ran into her apartment with my eyes on the floor and a baseball bat hoping to defeat the monster but could only find The Bachelorette playing on her TV. She was driven mad by Logan, and I worry she’ll never return from the brink of reality. 

Gabby goes to Rachel to catch up on the privilege of Logan coming to her. Gabby is fully stunned that Rachel canceled the date, and you can see her doing the mental math about how she can date Logan and still be friends with Rachel at the end of this. Again: over Logan!! Does he smell really good or something? Is his dad rich? Because the tall ones aren’t always packin’, y’know?

It’s time for the evening portion of Rachel’s group date that never was and the men gather beneath one of the ship’s 200 staircases. Rachel explains that Logan has defected to the other side and she’s plagued with constant rejection and tells the guys that if anyone is thinking about choosing Gabby, now’s the fucking time!! Tyler leads her into a hall of mirrors to aggressively make out, and Tino tells her that canceling the group date was actually about him and he’d appreciate it if she apologized. Someone in the preview for the rest of the season calls him a “baby-back bitch” and that’s the funniest thing ever uttered on this program.

Oh! Speaking of the rest of the season, Rachel says that there are only two weeks til hometowns. I’m sorry, what. Okay, now I’m worried for my gals. I don’t even know who most of these men are. Like … who’s Ethan? I don’t think he’s spoken a full sentence on camera that wasn’t narration about someone else. We gotta slow this down. Can we bring in some of the Nice Guys from FBoy Island to pad this thing out for the rest of the season? What’s Casey up to?

Tino gets the group-date rose.

Next is Gabby’s group date, and it’s your classic “walk around a European city” group date. They ride on a fun li’l boat; they make waffles and commit several health-code violations. A big beefy guy slaps them in the face with a fish. That’s the Belgium game! But the real treat is during the evening portion of the date when Logan saunters in without any warning wearing his turtleneck and chain necklace. My kingdom for a tasteful print! Logan explains that Rachel gave him a rose because she saw something in him. He tells them, “She said we could be something special,” and I wanna know when. But he didn’t see the same thing (which makes the whole thing sound like Rachel was full-on in love with him and he had to let her down gently), so he must go pursue Gabby. All the guys are pissed and nervous about their connections. But Logan isn’t enough of a villain to do anything with this position of relative power, and none of the guys on either team are confrontational enough to say something to him about it. I was promised drama! What is this!! Nate gets the group-date rose.

It’s time for Rachel and Aven’s one-on-one date. (I would prefer if the format were all of Rachel’s dates and then both of Gabby’s dates; that’s the only way this makes sense.) Rachel finally gets some of that Belgian chocolate and then she finally gets some of that Belgian chocolate. They find out that they’re both water signs, and a Scorpio and a Pisces are extremely compatible. At the evening portion of their date, Aven just starts talking, explaining that stability is a huge thing for him. He talks about how his parents separated when he was 10 and he spent time going back and forth between his parents’ houses and how he’s rebuilt a relationship with his mom. He gives Rachel a bracelet his mom made him and she absolutely melts. Rachel is basically in love. Way too many fireworks are set off. The amount of fireworks is not proportional to anything in the known universe. The sky is only fireworks.

It’s time for Gabby’s one-on-one date with Johnny … who is a man … who is on this television program. He’s cool???? He looks like Jason Schwartzman if Jason Schwartzman was Lance Bass. Just close your eyes and think about it. Uncanny, right? Gabby says that he’s a little bit macho and a little bit goofy. They head to a brewery with a man who looks like a boardwalk caricature of a master brewer. But before Gabby and Johnny can get too drunk, it’s time for a romantic beer-based spa day. Gabby beats him with branches and they get into a beer hot tub together. They’re laughing, they’re sipping on the beer bathwater that has been circulating around their bodies. Johnny says he never acts like this, but if you can’t sprinkle an exfoliating agent on your date’s back like salt bae, can you even call it a first date?

It’s time for the evening portion of the date, and Gabby is looking for Johnny to tell her the opposite of a fun fact about himself. Gabby keeps asking him questions that will cause him to open up, like, “Do you feel like you’re super-guarded?” Johnny tells her that he’s incredibly hard on himself and he lacks confidence. He also says that he has suffered from anxiety and depression, and Gabby is excited to talk about depression. She tells him that they have to be a little easier on themselves, and she thinks he’s telling her things he’s never told anyone else. Gabby’s type is either “Been in a lot of therapy” or “Actively signing up for BetterHelp during this conversation.” Johnny gets the rose.

Heading into the rose ceremony, everyone is stressed about Logan switching teams and … nothing really comes of it. If you’re going to make me watch 14 confessionals with Logan, I better get whatever the equivalent of straight men throwing shade is. Instead, Gabby slaps Logan with a fish, not for his crimes but so he doesn’t feel left out. Time to give out roses, I guess?

Rachel gives her roses to Zach, Tyler, and Ethan???????? And Gabby gives her roses to Jason, Spencer, Erich, and our plot device. In the preview for the rest of the season, Gabby says that all her dreams are coming true, which means it’s her time to suffer!

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The Bachelorette Recap: Him?