‘The Bachelorette’: Do you want to see a dead body?

The Bachelorette
June 28, 2021

Typically, an episode of The Bachelor or The Bachelorette consists of three dates (most often two group dates and one-on-one date) and a rose ceremony, breaking the two-hour run time into roughly four parts, each running about twenty to twenty-five minutes or so. Which, it turns out, is the longest I can watch any single one of those segments before I get bored/LOSE MY DAMN MIND. And I know this because this weird-ass episode, it consists of exactly one (1) date and one (1) rose ceremony, making the entire proceedings feel 18 hours long.

And I understand that the producers and editors were working with a lot of story bits and pieces: wrapping up a week’s worth of dates, all of the house drama, introducing a new character … But there has to be a better, less boring way to go about it, guys.

That said … it’s all kinda worth it in the end.

We begin the episode rehashing the whole Half-Witted Villain business, what with the whole “Yeah, I came on the show wanting to be the next Bachelor, uh duh!” admission in front of THE ENTIRE CAST. We spend the first five? ten? thirty? minutes of the episode with the men busily gossiping about what a duplicitous asshole he is. Meanwhile, Half-Witted works out and stares pensively out into the desert, unsure how he’s going to get himself out of this mess, which admittedly will be difficult on account of how VERY STUPID he is.

We finally — FINALLY — get started on the final group date, the card for which apparently read: “Be daring in the name of love.” Those on the date are: Ball Pit; Cousin Greg; Bahstan; The New Virgin; Accent Guy; Little League; Andrew the Lawyer; and The Math Major.

And, yeah, I have no idea who those last three are, either.

When the men arrive on the date, they are informed by Katie, Kaitlyn, and Tayshia that they are about to play “Katie’s Truth or Dare.” They will pair up and go to various stations around the property where they will be faced with various tasks that will punish challenge them mentally, physically, and emotionally.

The stations include:

A carb eating station, where the men have to eat mountains of fettuccine alfredo, or mashed potatoes, or an entire pound cake, prompting one of the funniest reactions from The New Virgin when faced with a pile of Twinkies:

That’s right, this man has denied himself both sex and carbs like some sort of keto monk.

Our boy Cousin Greg meanwhile:

The giant ear station into which the men must whisper sweet nothings to Katie for one minute. Katie and the other women can obviously hear everything that is being said, though they pretend otherwise.

Accent Guy goes with his Bridgerton impersonation, whispering about touching and showers, while Cousin Greg chooses, inexplicably, to name as many states as he can think of.

The waxing station. This is exactly what it sounds like.

Finally, the men are brought to the final challenge, the pepper-eating/fake proposal station. There, the men are forced to eat two habaneros and then get down on one knee and “propose” to Katie while tears stream down their faces and their throats close up. Because love is pain? Or watching people suffering is funny? I’m not really sure what is going on here.

Fortunately for the men and their internal organs, the dare portion of the day is over, and Katie warns them that at the cocktail party, they’ll face the “truth” part of the date.

That night, the men head to the cocktail party, commenting along the way that they didn’t realize New Mexico got so cold. And I am here to tell you, some of the coldest times of my life have been in the New Mexico high desert (the coldest being the great power failure of February 2021 right here in Texas, but that’s a whole other story for another time).

Katie soon arrives and orders them to open up about their “truths” and be vulnerable with her. Accent Guy asks to speak to her first, and leads her to the other room where he has set up his own food challenge for her: some Taco Bell tacos and Sour Straws. Payback is, after all, a bitch.

Accent Guy then tells Katie that he had great fun on the date, and that it was actually something of a bonding experience with the other men, which was a nice change of pace from all of the house drama. They then make out.

Katie also talks with ~checks notes~ Andrew the Lawyer? Yeah, I guess this guy is Andrew the Lawyer, and he yammers some cliché nonsense about making each other better or something, I stopped paying attention, he was so boring.

The New Virgin shares some platitudes about how a relationship should be about sacrifice and not giving 50-50, but 100-100. I’m pretty sure he cribbed this from some locker room speech he heard once.

Katie also visits with Cousin Greg who talks about how difficult it is to be living with a bunch of her other “boyfriends” and Katie goes out of her way to let him know that she is starting to have feelings for him and that if they can get through this, they can get through anything.

25 previous Bachelorette and Bachelor couples would beg to disagree.

Katie chats with The Math Major who tells her that this whole thing has been the most “incredible experience of [his] whole life,” which, you know, 1. no, it’s probably not and 2. bring it down a notch, dude.

Meanwhile, the other men are outside arguing about whether or not to tell Katie about the whole Half-Witted Villain thing. Ball Pit is telling the men that he intends to use his time with her to tell her because she explicitly asked them to tell her these sorts of things; Accent Guy thinks this is a terrible idea that will backfire on all of them, that it will upset Katie and take time away from them; and anyway, they should trust her to figure this shit out on her own.

And I genuinely appreciate the trust Accent Guy places in her as an adult woman. But on the other hand … I’ve seen enough of these shows to know that some percentage of every cast are sociopaths and that it’s remarkably easy to be taken in by them when you want to believe they are falling in love with you, so I, personally, if I were the Bachelorette, would WANT TO FUCKING KNOW.

Nothing that Accent Guy says dissuades Ball Pit from his mission. As soon as he is alone with Katie and they get past the niceties, Ball Pitt is like, “Yeah, so, Half-Witted Villain is a straight-up manipulator and a liar and he told everyone — ON CAMERA — that he came on the show to be the next Bachelor and I thought you should know.”

Katie:

Katie takes a moment to go cry to a producer while Ball Pit returns to the other men and tells him what he did. Accent Guy, disappointed, calls Ball Pit a real “Buzz Killington,” worries what the ripple effect is going to be, and huffs that there is NO WAY Ball Pit is going to receive the date rose.

Katie returns and gives Ball Pit the date rose, and Ball Pit says it feels amazing and that he’s “buzzing.”

The next morning, Katie is still fuming over the whole Half-Witted Villain being a villain and being half-witted thing when Tayshia shows up at her door with some news. Apparently, a contestant from Tayshia’s season reached out to the producers her about joining Katie’s season. Tayshia is not going to tell Katie who the guy is because where’s the fun in that, but she will say that she believes he has good intentions, and that he is here, waiting to talk to her.

Katie finds this news “scary” and worrisome: she’s developing relationships already; will bringing in someone new disrupt that? But on the other hand, doesn’t she owe it to herself to explore whatever this is?

To that end, she agrees to meet this mystery man and … it’s Grizzly Adams.

SORRY, WRONG PICTURE.

THE BACHELORETTE – ABC’s “The Bachelorette” stars Blake Moynes. (ABC/Craig Sjodin)

Upon seeing Sully Grizzly Adams, Katie is surprised but clearly also pleased: she admits that he reached out to her in her DMs following her departure on The Bachelor to compliment her on her “bold personality.” Katie does note, however, it is concerning that he’s dated two previous Bachelorettes (though that was not his fault, seeing as Clare up and abandoned the show). Katie explains that she’s dealing with some dipshits who are on the show for dubious reasons, and so the fact that Grizzly Adams seems to fall in love with every Bachelorette he crosses paths with … you can understand why she’s a little hesitant to bring him on her season.

Grizzly admits that he is aware that this could make him look like a complete idiot, but the potential reward is so much greater that he thinks it’s worth taking that risk. And Katie agrees that there is a spark between them, but she has a lot to think about, including how this could ruin everything that she’s built with some of the other contestants. And in conclusion, she has other things to deal with right now, so he’ll just have to wait a minute before she decides what to do with him.

Katie then has a long conversation with Kaitlyn and Tayshia about this whole Half-Witted Villain mess. She recaps what Ball Pit told her, that Half-Wit told LITERALLY ALL OF THE OTHER MEN ON CAMERA that he came on the show to be the next Bachelor. And if that’s the case, then how could he possibly ever really have been open to falling in love with her? Those two things are incompatible. (Which is certainly true! But I also need a producer to tell me with a straight face that a full 30-70% of all contestants on these shows don’t come on the series with the intention to be the next Bachelor/Bachelorette. Come the fuck on.)

Katie goes on to say that she was picturing hometowns with Half-Witted, and that she has had a moment of sadness over this guy. He made her feel SO GOOD, and now … The women agree that Half-Witted Villain sounds like a real piece of work, and worry that he is plotting right now. As for what she’s going to do next … she’s still processing her anger and thinking about how she’s going to handle this asshole. 

SO. ROSE CEREMONY TIME. Except, when the men arrive, Half-Witted Villain is noticeably missing. In fact, no one has seen him for the past few hours, and Katie is nowhere to be seen, so the only logical answer is that they are together somewhere.

And in fact, that is exactly what is happening. Half-Wit decided that the only way to counter the narrative about him that the men are creating is for Half-Wit to talk to Katie himself. And to that end, he’s going to delay the entire cocktail party in the name of “not taking time away from the other men.”

Because that math definitely checks out.

Once alone with her, Half-Witted Villain tells Katie that he knows the other men are talking about him and that they have, AND I FUCKING QUOTE, “demonsterized” his character.

Katie asks him point-blank if he came on the show with the intention to be the next Bachelor, and this ding dong’s answer is that he came on to the show open to “every possibility,” one of which is that audiences and producers would fall so in love with him that they would make him the star of the next season. Is that so wrong?

Katie assures him that there are plenty of men in the house who have zero interest in becoming the next Bachelor (but I can assure her that there are still plenty of others who do) and Half-Witted is like, “that’s me too! I’ll sign a legal document promising that I won’t become the next Bachelor if you want me to!” Katie says she doesn’t know how to respond to any of this because he’s “so perfect” and says things “exactly as [she] wants to hear them,” to which I say: OK, but, “demonsterize?” That’s exactly what you want to hear? “DEMONSTERIZE?”

Half-Witted insists the other men are painting him as something he’s not, that he will do whatever he has to prove what is in his heart and that he just wants to be with her. Katie’s like, “Yeah, great, now I have other men to think about and talk to, goodbye.”

So, Half-Witted Villain joins the other men and explains that he wanted to talk to Katie about his intentions. He felt he owed her the respect to have that conversation with her before the Rose Ceremony and the last thing he wanted to do is take more time from the other men.

“It’s midnight, bro,” says Bahstan.

And just a couple of things, 1. that’s an amazing quote and 2.:

Katie finally arrives and apologizes for being late, but explains that she and Half-Witted Villain had some things to discuss, before apologizing to Half-Wit that he feels “ostracized” by the house.

The other men:

Katie then first chats with Oh Canada who confirms for her that Half-Witted Villain is a “snake in the grass;” Great Face tells her that he’s relieved that Ball Pit told her about Half-Wit, because he would have had to if Ball Pit hadn’t; and Aggro assures her that the feelings in the house about Half-Witted Villain are unanimous: they all hate him have concerns.

And while Katie certainly appreciates the men sharing their thoughts, it’s also exhausting for her to retread this well-trod ground, which is why she’s pleased to talk to Michael Bluth who only wants to talk about them, their date, and how he had a wonderful time. Katie confirms that she had a wonderful time, too, so much so that she had started wondering if he’d be willing to leave Ohio one day. (Which, I mean, OK, but wouldn’t it be easier for her to get a bank job in Ohio than it would be for him to uproot his kid and move to Washington? As a feminist, I obviously don’t think that a woman should have to give up her career for a man, but  once kids get involved, the math becomes a little more … complicated.)

ANYWAY. It’s finally Rose Ceremony time. Katie apologizes again for taking time away from the men to talk to Half-Witted Villain, and that she appreciates their honesty and showing up for her. For his part, Half-Wit decides that what the other men want right now is to hear from him about how sorry he is if any of them thought for a moment that he was not here for the right reasons, or for making any of them feel disrespected or “diminishing their value as men.”

Great Face speaks for all of the other, “diminished” men:

And with that, Katie begins handing out roses:

Rose #1: Cold Fish
Rose #2: Cousin Greg
Rose #3: Great Face
Rose #4: Oh Canada
Rose #5: Accent Guy
Rose #6: Aggro
Rose #7: The New Virgin
Rose #8: James-in-a-Box
Rose #9: The Math Major
Rose #10: Q
Rose #11: Andrew the Lawyer

When Katie picks up the last rose, she calls out …

WAIT FOR IT …

HALF-WITTED VILLAIN. AND THEN THEY CUT TO COMMERCIAL.

AHHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHA WUT

But! WAIT! Because as Half-Witted Villain, so clearly pleased with himself that he tricked Katie and beat the other men at their own game, steps up to receive his rose … Katie does this:

Katie then tells him that while he told her everything she wanted to hear, she also learned that night that he was selfish, unkind, and a liar. “[His] Bachelor audition ends tonight.”

GOTDAMN.

Which means the men who must buzz off are:

Bahstan; Little League; Highwaters; and, of course, Half-Witted Villain.

But Katie’s not done, because then, at what? 4 a.m.? she stops by Grizzly Adams’ hotel room.

Grizzly quickly gets dressed and goes outside to receive the good news: she’s going to add him to the house because the producers need someone new for the other men to hate. She tells him to get some sleep and then pack up: he’ll be moving in with the other men tomorrow (or really, later that morning). And with that, she leaves, and Grizzly Adams realizes he’s locked himself out of his hotel room.

The Men Who Have Been Dumped by Katie:

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

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

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