‘The Bachelorette’: Of mice and man-children

The Bachelorette
November 17, 2020

This episode begins with the final group date left over from the previous episode’s dates — if that makes sense. We only had two dates in the previous episode and this is the third. On this group date are Sukhasana, American Psycho, Sir Dumbass, Parachute Guy, Bubble Boy, Dr. Joe, Bobby Fischer, and Vision Board.

They are lead to what looks sorta like a schoolroom where they are greeted by Tayshia and the single-most irritating couple in the Bachelor Universe: Khaste Kardashian and Cousin Max — otherwise known as Ashley Iaconetti and her husband Jared Haibon, whom she convinced to marry her after sobbing for three years straight. The two explain that they will be the hosts of today’s date competition: Tayshia is looking for a “grown-ass man,” so this is The Grown-Ass Man Challenge.

This is the first time you will hear the phrase “grown-ass man” but, dear reader, I assure you it will not be the last.

After a series of competitions, one of the men will be crowned, a “Grown-Ass Man” while another will be labeled a “Man-Child,” a title I can TOTALLY get behind and I don’t need to watch a bunch of these dinguses doing third-grade math to hand it out.

Round One is a math and science test because Tayshia is looking for someone who is “smart.” American Psycho, who, as he reminds us again in the event that our tiny brains have forgotten since the last episode, graduated from Harvard, is pretty sure he has this one under control. “I’m in the upper echelon of ‘grown-ass man’,” he says with all the confidence of a person about to be defeated by a fourth-grade spelling list.

Sample questions: If Tayshia has 25 roses and she gave out 6 on one date, one First Impression Rose, and 3 on one-on-one dates, how many does she have left?


Spell “Limousine.”

And obviously, obviously, OBVIOUSLY, American Psycho gets these and other equally easy questions wrong.

Round Two: According to Bachelorette logic, a “grown-ass man” is able to defend the woman he loves emotionally and physically. To that end, the men will put on waist belts that are attached and then run towards a bouquet of flowers. Whoever gets to their bouquet first wins, because being a grown-ass man means being good at opposite tug of war.

They don’t show us all of the rounds, but it is notable that Sukhasana beats Bubble Boy who is described as having “chicken legs” and American Psycho gets out of competing altogether thanks to an old football injury.

Round Three: The breakfast in bed challenge, a.k.a, the only round that actually counts for anything. I don’t need a man who can spell “limousine” — Momma’s got spellcheck for that, and I don’t need a man who can win a field day game. But what I do need is a man who knows how to make some coffee and cook some eggs and not give me any guff if I need to sleep in a little.

Parachute Guy brings Tayshia a mimosa, which is a good start. Bobby Fischer offers Tayshia the bouquet he won in the previous round, which is nice but not technically breakfast. Bubble Boy, still embarrassed by his chicken-legged tug-of-war loss, makes Tayshia sit on his back while he does push-ups, which, again, is not breakfast. Sir Dumbass takes off his shirt and declares himself the “main course,” AND AGAIN, I CAN NOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH, THIS IS BREAKFAST. American Psycho, in a bathrobe, gets into the bed with Tayshai and presents to her a plate of beignets. Bennett’s Beignets.

With that, Ashley and Jared are ready to call the competition: the Man-Child is Bubble Boy, who is awarded a crying baby doll whom he names “Carlos”; and the Grown-Ass Man trophy goes to American Psycho, despite not knowing how to calculate time or spell “limousine” and despite not competing at all in the second round.

And you know what? As much as I dislike Harvard Boy, I have to agree with this decision because: carbs, man. Carbs win every. single. time. You bring me a plate of beignets, and I’ll give you literally anything you want.

American Psycho continues wearing the bathrobe into the cocktail party to the irritation of the other men, and yammering about how he has “all the confidence of a grown-ass man.” Sir Dumbass wonders if a “grown-ass man” doesn’t compete in physical competitions before giving him grief about his bathrobe and talking about how American Psycho isn’t the type of “grown-ass man” Tayshis needs to be with.


Tayshia arrives, and before she can say hello to the men, American Psycho asks if he can take her aside, but she’s like, “GIMME A MINUTE.” She greets everyone, offers a toast, and before she can even finish, Sir Dumbass asks if HE can take her aside first, to American Psycho’s grown-ass irritation.

While Sir Dumbass is off with Tayshia telling her that he loves his family, that his sister has a baby on the way and that he’s never been in love, American Psycho and Bubble Boy are bitching to each other about what a phony Sir Dumbass is, and how he has a limited vocabulary. This is the kind of snark I can get behind, by the way. In the words of one of Houston’s greatest rappers, Bun B: STEP UP YO VOCAB, SIR DUMBASS.

Meanwhile, Tayshia is having a flirty visit with Sukhasana, with whom she has obvious chemistry. And, AND! he manages to ask for her permission to kiss her before doing so in a way that is not awkward, but actually kinda sexy. It can be done, gentlemen, it just requires confidence and an actual connection between the two of you.

Bobby Fischer asks Tayshia actual questions about herself and what she wants — which again, if there are any single men out there reading this, a dubious proposition, I realize, but in the unlikely event that there are: this is what women want. They want you to demonstrate an interest in them by asking questions about them instead of droning on about yourself. You’ll get a chance to talk about yourself, I promise, you always do. But for a lot of women, it’s a refreshing change to be asked about themselves occasionally.

Bobby Fischer then blindfolds her and feeds her some strawberries which I, as a control freak, can absolutely do without, but Tayshia thinks it’s sexy so, whatever.

Back at the gaggle of men, American Psycho makes a generic comment about how while it’s great Tayshia is the Bachelorette now, he, and some of the other men are concerned that maybe not everyone there is really that into her. Sir Dumbass is immediately like, “YOU TALKING ABOUT ME?” and American Psycho totally throws Bubble Boy under the Dumbass horse, noting that he’s the one who brought it up.

Sir Dumbass admits that he had a “connection” with Clare (he did not), and argues that it’s hard to just pivot. Bubble Boy calls him a bad actor, so Sir Dumbass is like, “OH YEAH, WELL YOU HAVE CHICKEN LEGS.”

American Psycho points out that there’s still a rose to give out that and proposes a toast to being “grown-ass men” …

… and everyone cheers, but Sir Dumbass refuses to clink glasses with Bubble Boy because he’s a petulant baby. Or man-child, if you will.

Bubble Boy uses his time with Tayshia to introduce her to Carlos before tattling on Sir Dumbass for not being genuine with her, using the same language to describe her as he did Clare (which, in Sir Dumbass’ defense, might just be the result of that limited vocabulary of his and not actually a sign of his insincerity) …

… and that he’s a different guy as soon as the cameras turn on. Bubble Boy just wants to make sure the men are all here for the right reasons (drink!) and not for Instagram followers. “ALSO, HE CALLED ME ‘CHICKEN LEGS.””

So, Tayshia obviously asks to speak to Sir Dumbass again and he’s like, “I mean, I was here for Clare and it’s a pivot, but I think we’re vibing, right?” Tayshia kinda shrugs and sends him back with the other men by himself so that she can confer with the producers THINK FOR A GODDAMN MINUTE.

Sir Dumbass makes a beeline for Bubble Boy whom he stands over and yells at for “interfering” in his relationship with Tayshia. Bubble Boy suggests that Sir Dumbass and his medium (or “smedium” as he actually slurs) t-shirt sit their asses down, to which Sir Dumbass hisses, “IT’S A LARGE.”

Bubble Boy makes fun of Sir Dubmass’s use of cliché when he said the night before that he’s “on cloud nine,” like he’s in a Zac Efron movie. And again, Bubble Boy was not on my radar, but his vocabulary criticisms are GIVING ME LIFE.

As Tayshia rounds the corner, and everyone hiss-whispers to Sir Dumbass to SIT HIS ASS DOWN. Tayshia, oblivious, teases Sukhasana with the date rose, but ultimately gives it to Bobby Fischer because I’m telling you, women like it when you show genuine interest in them.

Also, strawberries.


Next up is Tayshia’s first rose ceremony, and Bubble Boy, cementing my love for him, brings Carlos with him, God bless him. THAT’S FATHER MATERIAL, RIGHT THERE. Before Tayshia arrives, Sir Dumbass warns the other men to NOT attack his character, he doesn’t want any drama. He then announces that per the criticism regarding his lack of novel adjectives for Tayshia, he’s come up with an entirely new one for her: she’s a “smokeshow.”

He’s very, very proud of this.

Tayshia arrives and blah blah blahs about finding real love and that she hopes they are showing their “true selves” before having generic rose ceremony conversations with the men. She kisses Sukhasana; eats popsicles with Lunch Meat and bibimbap with Dr. Joe; American Psycho has a cutout Eiffel Tower for her for some reason, and Parachute Guy wrote her terrible poetry. 

Elsewhere, Bubble Boy is still harping on Sir Dumbass, correctly pointing out that “smokeshow” isn’t even an adjective: it’s a noun. And let me clarify: Bubble Boy is, like Sir Dumbass, an asshole. But the thing is, between a smart asshole and a dumb asshole, I’m going to side with the smart asshole every time.

During his time with Tayshia, Bubble Boy doesn’t bore her with grammar lessons but does note that Sir Dumbass became aggressive with him, towering over him and screaming at him after he tattled on him.

Tayshia then confronts Sir Dumbass about it, and he’s like, “I mean, like, yeah, I got aggressive with him because HE MAKE ME MAD.” Tayshia calls him childish and petty and wonders why Sir Dumbass didn’t just talk to Bubble Boy like a GROWN-ASS MAN.

So Sir Dumbass attempts this, asking to speak to Bubble Boy alone, but things fall apart pretty soon and the other men, namely Faux Lou Perlman and One of the Zacs, have to pull them apart to avoid nonsense. “Just bury it,” One of the Zacs advises because he’s an actual grown-ass man adult.

Tayshia then has a conversation with One of the Zacs, who she finds refreshingly mature, maybe because he’s 36, and not floundering around in his 20s, playing at being an adult. Because when you cast a show full of children, you’re going to get a bunch of playground nonsense.

And here’s the thing: she’s obviously going to keep around all the calm, “grown-ass men” like One of the Zacs, but she’s also going to keep around — for at least this week — Sir Dumbass, Bubble Boy, and the actual shit-stirrer, American Psycho because there’s too much drama to continue to milk there. It’s become such an obvious Bachelor/Bachelorette trope that I think it would be genuinely surprising if one of these seasons the Bachelor/Bachelorette would actually send home a Sir Dumbass/Bubble Boy combo on a night like this. (This will never ever happen.)

Rose #1: One of the Zacs
Rose #2: Groany McBadJoke, Esq.
Rose #3: Faux Lou Perlman
Rose #4: Sukhasana
Rose #5: Parachute Guy
Rose #6: American Psycho
Rose #7: Lunch Meat
Rose #8: Four-Eyes
Rose #9: Porn Stache
Rose #10: Dr. Joe
Rose #11: Grizzly Adams
Rose #12: Bubble Boy
Rose #13: Sir Dumbass

Which means we must say goodbye to Covid Car Crash, Vision Board, and Straightjacket, all of whom I completely forgot even existed.

Your time in the bubble is over, guys. Enjoy life on the outside (AND DRIVE SAFELY).

With the rose ceremony out of the way, the next day marks the beginning of another set of dates, beginning with a group date: “Eazy, Bowtie, Dr. Joe, Four-Eyes, Lunch Meat, Sukhasana, Bubble Boy, Sir Dumbass: I’m looking for my perfect match.”

Some genius is all, “WE’RE GONNA DO A PUZZLE!” but someone else is like, “Yeah, I’m thinking wrestling,” and everyone is like, “OK, that makes a lot more sense, especially since both Bubble Boy and Sir Dumbass are on this date together.”

And sure enough, the men are brought into a gym outfitted with a big mat where they are met by Tayshia and two VERY terrifying women, WWE Hall of Famer Amy Dumas and UFC fighter Tatiana Suarez, both of whom could crush these men. They explain that the men will grease up and cage fight, but before that, they are there to teach them some wrestling moves and how to trash talk.

Dr. Joe is either very terrible or the very very best at the trash talk:

Tayshia oils up the men — literally, she smears each of the guys with a bucket of movie popcorn butter with a giant paintbrush — and the “audience” is brought in: the other guys not on the date.

Oh and, All-4-Wells is there to co-announce with Chris Harrison now that the great Fred Willard is no longer with us. R.I.P. Fred.

Dr. Joe faces Eazy and, I mean, Eazy is a former NFL player and Dr. Joe is an anesthesiologist. It’s not a competition.

Four-Eyes soundly defeats Bowtie, with a humiliating balls-to-the-face final pin.

Sukhasana and Lunch Meat’s match ends in a draw, with Sukhasana having cut the bottom of his foot and the medics needing to be called.

And then the final, we-all-knew-we’d-get-here, it’s-the-whole-reason-for-the-date match: Bubble Boy versus Sir Dumbass.

Except! Taking a cue from American Psycho, Bubble Boy claims that he has this weird injury that he completely forgot to mention earlier where if someone looks at him funny, his shoulders spontaneously dislocate themselves. He really really wants to wrestle, but what with the whole pandemic happening, he’d really like to avoid hospitals right now and that’s why he can’t wrestle tonight. Not because he’s terrified of Sir Dumbass. That is definitely not it.

So Chris Harrison asks the audience if there is anyone who wants to fight, and Porn Stache leaps over the fence and into the ring without hesitation.

The other men are OUTRAGED that Porn Stache would literally jump into their date, but … like … Chris Harrison invited him to? Anyway, they grouse that he is greedy and say it’s the only thing more embarrassing than his mustache.

His fight with Sir Dumbass is long and violent but at the end of the day, Porn Stache loses. But! He doesn’t lose everything, because Tayshia, to the profound irritation of all the men, invites him to join her and the other guys at the cocktail party for the date that he was not a part of.

AND THEN, to make matters worse, Porn Stache is the first to ask to talk to Tayshia.

The other men:


Anyway. Tayshia tells him that she thought the whole fence-jumping thing was “bold” and soon they’re making out. However, Tayshia pulls back and asks him to shave the mustache off. Tonight. Right now.

Back at the couches, Sukhasana explains that he’s “manifesting the rose” to himself, while yammering into the camera that he has a whole plan to sit back, let Tayshia talk to the rest of the men, and then swoop in last, have a nice relaxing moment with her right before she hands out the rose which she obviously will reward to him. And it’s a great plan and one I am absolutely positive the producers will respect and not fuck with at all.

Meanwhile, Tayshia talks with Bowtie who has questions about how she felt when she rejoined the dating world after her divorce which I am confident is just an innocent question and not at all foreshadowing. Tayshia repeats that she could see herself with him … AT THE END OF THIS, SO CALM DOWN, CHRIS HARRISON.

As for Porn Stache, he runs back to his hotel room, grabs a razor, and then proceeds to interrupt her conversation with Four-Eyes to invite her to do the honors. Tayshia, cackling, shaves off his mustache.

Porn Stache:

Two things:

1. Without the mustache, Porn Stache literally looks like a different person. I don’t know that I agree with all the screaming on Twitter that he looks better — I thought the mustache gave him a certain ironic je ne sais quoi — but he definitely looks entirely different.

And 2. I don’t care, I’m still calling him Porn Stache.

Tayshia and Porn Stache return to the group and Tayshia is all, “I had so much fun today!” but Sukhasana, who has been sitting around all night, is like, “Uh, wait, can we talk?” But Tayshia tells him the night is over. HE HAD HIS CHANCE.

Tayshia grabs the rose and turns her attention to Porn Stache, asking the men don’t they think he looks really good without the mustache?

The other men:

But Tayshia don’t care and notes that he really fought for her, which is why she’s giving him the rose, which the men all accept with maturity and understanding. 

J/K J/K They’re all stupid babies about it, and bitch and moan and loudly announce that BOY ARE THEY GOING TO GIVE PORN STACHE THE BUSINESS LATER.

The Men Who Have Been Dumped by Tayshia and Clare:

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The Men Who Are Going to Soon Be Dumped by Tayshia:

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The Bachelorette airs on ABC on Tuesday at 7/8 p.m.

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