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25 to Life: Abundantly Confident

25 to Life: Abundantly Confident

Four hours later we have completed this week’s firing squad episodes of The Bachelorette. Also, thanks for missing me last week and I’m glad to be back.

MONDAY

So we start the episode continuing the back and forth between Lee and Kenny. This is a complicated exchange and remains so through the end of the episode. The fact of the matter is, Lee just straight up is picking on Kenny because he is black. Period. He tried it with Eric, but he didn’t get the rise out of him that he wanted. Then he preyed on Kenny and because Kenny is emotional, he fell right in his trap. As I have said before, it is not only emotionally draining but dangerous for the producers to put Lee on this show for “drama.” And the fact that many of the contestants (not all of them because at the least Dean knows what is actually happening) are dismissing Lee’s behavior as “drama” is concerning to me. Don’t they know they are vying for the heart of a black woman? Don’t they know that they will have black children with this woman? Don’t they know that their relationship will inherently be subjected to this kind of behavior? It is upsetting to watch and for it to be dragged out over the course of the last few weeks. The moment when Will tried to explain to Lee why his behavior was problematic instead of saying, “Oh, I get it. I am being uncool,” he instead said, “Oh so he’s playing the race card?” I was floored and enraged. If I am exhausted by it, I can’t imagine how Rachel, Kenny and many of the other contestants of color feel about it.

Remember — This is still all a continuation of last week!! After all this fighting Bryan gets the group date rose. I can’t even remember what this date was about, but I do remember that Bryan reminds me of Josh Murray and not in a good way. He always know what to say and how to say it. He’s a salesman. A 37 year old salesman. She definitely is thinking about all of those things when she is with him, but god if she doesn’t want to put that V on his P. I don’t blame her.

Next, Jack Stone gets a 1:1 date. If there was ever a time for you to watch this show and think to yourself, “Some of this has to be fake or a product of the producers manipulating the contestants,” this is it. Rachel very clearly doesn’t like Jack. She has never liked Jack and now she is forced to go on a date with him where he says creepy things. The nail in the coffin was when he described his perfect day with Rachel would be to lock her in a room and lay in the bed all day. NO. Her face was my favorite part of that whole date. After all that, Jack goes home.

We get a rose ceremony (FINALLY) and we lose Iggy and Jonathan.

Next up we go to Norway and Bryan gets his first 1:1 date. The two of them repel off the side of a building and cement their relationship with a physical challenge. Bryan continues to be smooth and Rachel continues to be cautiously optimistic about their relationship. She likes him for sure and has been vocal about this not being a fantasy. He begs to differ. He gets the rose and she asks if his family would be ok with him brining a black girl home. That means he is at least getting to hometowns and he is definitely going to the fantasy suite.

This week’s group date includes all of your favorites except Kenny and Lee so you know what that means… the dreaded 2:1 date. But let’s talk about the Handball group date which was the most fun I’ve had in a long time. What is there not to love? Peter in wrestling spandex, Dean wearing his jock strap outside of his uniform, and the now famous quote, “Handball is life,” being uttered by a gruff on the surface, but teddy bear type coach gave me life. Will was surprisingly good at handball and had a great attitude about the date which made me think twice about him being a potential dark horse in the competition. More on that later. Rachel spends the evening talking to the guys, but the highlight is our first hot tub event of the show with Peter. WHEW! That was hotter than hell and I loved every second of it. Even with all of that canoodling, Will gets the date rose.

SO. Now the 2:1 date. I don’t want to spend a lot of time on this because it is so emotionally draining. Basically what happens, Kenny keeps his cool and Lee decides to spin wild tales about Kenny putting his hands on him, being physically violent, and some other bullshit. Now, if Kenny had tried to fight Lee or put his hands on another contestant, he would have been gone. That is Reality TV 101. Everyone knows that. Lee goes home because he sucks, and instead of letting him go, Kenny had to give Lee one more verbal beatdown. The Men Tell All is about to be fun! Not.

TUESDAY

Back again. Great to see you. We start the show with a bit of aftermath from the 2:1 date, but most of our annoyance with the subject matter is melting away into relief. This feels better when you don’t have someone on this show whose main job is to antagonize all of the black contestants.

We start with a 1:1 date for Eric. He has been having a rough time of it lately. He has self-sabotaged his own relationship with Rachel and he needs a little bit more validation than some of the other guys. Rachel was clear with him that his emotional roller coaster needed to chill the hell out and he has been pretty cool about it. So when we heard that he was getting a date this week, I wasn’t sure how he would take it. Surprisingly, Eric turned it on. He was a light in a dark tunnel. He was joyful. Making dad jokes. Bright. Fun. This is the Eric I have been waiting to see. This is the Eric that could win this thing. He went into detail about his past and growing up with an emotionally unavailable mother which creates issues for him when building relationships with women. Now it all makes sense. Rachel understands and she gets him. He gets a rose and all is right with the world.

Later, the bros dress up as Vikings for their next group date. Usually at this point in the show, the guys get pretty pissed about going on group dates, but the guys are having a really good time which makes me think that they have picked an incredible group of guys who have a fun time together. Oh, and remember that insane clip that they kept showing of Kenny bleeding? Yeah, he and Adam ran into each other on the date. Classic Bachelor misdirect. On the evening part of the date, Rachel has a real heart to heart with Kenny who has been struggling with where she is in this process and introducing her to his daughter. They discuss and decide that it is best for him to leave. She doesn’t want to lead him on and doesn’t want to get his daughter’s hopes up. It was a grown-up conversation and frankly, I’m glad he’s able to go home.

Finally, we have the last date of this week. Will who has been a dark horse in this process gets to spend some time with Rachel. I walk into this date thinking this is going to be amazing. They are going to find out they have so much in common and they are meant for each other. Will is a total package. He’s super cute, crazy smart, charming, and fun. All signs point to yes, right? Wrong. The chemistry with them wasn’t there during the day portion of the date. It was almost like he didn’t know how to approach her or was nervous. Weird, right. Well come to find out, Will had pretty much exclusively dated white girls. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but it seems as though Will didn’t even really know how to approach someone like Rachel. The moment he said that to her, I could see the wheels turning in her head as she rolled over all of the questions she had for him, “If you have never dated black girls, why are you here? Do you even like me?” The politics of this were complicated, but I completely understood where Rachel was coming from. She sent Will home and our dreams of him winning the show were dashed.

Another rose ceremony and we lose Alex who has been a delight this whole season. She keeps Matt and Adam which still baffles me, but meh.

What happens next week and on to the finale, we can’t be sure but it smells like next week, someone walks out.

Enjoy — thanks for sticking with us for a long episode and an even LONGER recap.

XO,

Taylor

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