‘The Bachelorette’: Hey, Jealousy

The Bachelorette
September 5, 2022

The Bachelorette has headed to Mexico for the Fantasy Suites and (maybe) Proposals — but not Puerta Vallarta, as I had assumed, to make it easier for filming Bachelor in Paradise soon after. Instead, they are in the Maya Riviera, the land of vast all-inclusive resorts and sweat — so much sweat — nestled between Cancun and Tulum.

Gabby and Rachel have a little reunion ahead of the Fantasy Suite dates to catch  each other and the audience up on what happened on their Dreaded Hometown Dates, and to remind us that this is the moment when Clayton set his entire season on fire. God, what a goon.

Rachel tells Gabby that Bob the Builder’s Dreaded Hometown was a shitshow; and Goose is very forthcoming about his feelings, but she’s not sure she can get there emotionally with him. As for who she’s taking on the first Fantasy Suite date, that’d be Junior, with whom she might be falling in love. But she doesn’t want to say those words to him — or anyone — before the bitter end, not after what that fuckchuckle Clayton did to them.

As for Gabby, she feels like she has a “special” connection to Motherboy and knows how he feels about her (he’s not ready to get engaged); and she has fun with Vanilla Ice (he definitely is not ready to get engaged). But then there is Mullet, whom she has told she is falling in love with. That said, Gabby insists that she needs to use every single minute with these men to figure out what will be best for her. (Which, considering she really only has one option, should be a short process.)

Sounds like everyone is set up for a disastrous week! Let’s go!

Fantasy Suite #1: Gabby and Mullet

Gabby and Mullet had an admittedly very emotional hometown date what with his dying father and grieving family, and Gabby and Mullet confessing they were falling in love with each other. It was intense, and it was difficult to walk away from  at  without some intense feelings developing. When Gabby greets Mullet, she notes that this will be their first date together without any family, and … yeah, I guess that’s right? Their first date was with Grandpa Joe, and then there was the Dreaded Hometown Date, so these people have only had two one-on-one dates before now.


Right, so, for their first date, Gabby and Mullet go to a cenote, which Gabby describes as a “natural hole in the ground.” I mean, yes, that’s technically correct, but it’s more than that: it’s a sinkhole that exposes the natural groundwater. The Ancient Mayans used them for drinking water and sacrifices, so that’s fun!

Gabby and Mullet jump from a platform into the cenote before moving to a taller level of the platform where Gabby proceeds to FREAK OUT about jumping for what must be a solid three hours.

And you’ll never guess it, but with Mullet’s patient encouragement, Gabby finally finds the courage to jump, and then both of them compare jumping off this platform to taking a leap of faith and falling in love.

After they’ve made the Big Leap, they discuss the Dreaded Hometown Date, and how while it was not an easy day, they both felt they grew closer through the experience. As Gabby then ruins the moment by telling him in the middle of the cenote, she “wants to crawl inside of him.” I mean, that is … an image.

That evening at dinner, they discuss their families some more: Mullet tells her that his family is “obsessed” with her; Gabby reminds him that her mother was a nightmare. Mullet reaffirms that Gabby is incredible to have turned out the way she did despite the emotional neglect she experienced and tells her again that he’s fallen in love with her. And that’s the magical phrase that unlocks the Fantasy Suite.

They spend the night together, and the next morning after breakfast, they have an excruciating goodbye, with Mullet telling her that as soon as he goes back to his room, he’s going to cry in the shower.

Gabby says in an interview that she’s more than falling in love with him: she is in love with him, and he deserves to know. BUT. She has to save it for the right moment.

She asks Mullet to be patient with her and to basically trust the process, but he is not interested in trusting the process thank you and goodbye.

Also not trusting in the process: Bob the Builder, who bitches, multiple times, about the fact that Rachel is going on other Fantasy Suites and not just giving him the final rose already. It’s “beyond [him]” that she is exploring other physical connections; it “makes [him] want to throw up” thinking about her spending the night with someone else; he doesn’t need to sleep with other people to know how he feels about her, SO WHY DOES SHE?

He’s being such a Baby Back Bitch about the whole thing that Jesse Palmer has to swing by his room and be like, “DUDE, CHILL.”

He does not chill.

Fantasy Suite #2: Rachel and Junior

Rachel and Junior have a perfectly boring Fantasy Suite date on a yacht EVEN THOUGH THEY ALL JUST SPENT A MONTH ON A DAMN BOAT. Nothing interesting is said or done: mostly the date is spent with Rachel burbling about just how terrific her Dreaded Hometown Date went with Junior and his family, which is not so much about her feelings for Junior as it is about just exactly how shitty her Dreaded Hometown Date was with Bob the Builder. That’s not to say that Junior isn’t great: he’s great! It’s that the Producers are obviously using Junior’s pleasant Dreaded Hometown as a contrast to Bob the Builder’s shitty Dreaded Hometown. And this strikes me as patently unfair to Junior who might be the most mature and emotionally available man left on this show — for either woman. I don’t know for sure where this is going, but I can already say with confidence that he deserves better.

That night, Rachel asks Junior if he can envision himself getting engaged in two weeks, and he’s like, “YEP,” which is good enough for Rachel. She tells him that she is falling in love with him, too, adding that she doesn’t just say that casually after the bullshit Clayton pulled on her a few months ago. With that, she offers him the date card, and he accepts, and to Bob the Builder’s horror, they “explore their physical connection.”

Fantasy Suite #3: Rachel and Bob the Builder

The next day, it’s Bob the Builder’s turn, and he describes the wait as being “excruciating” while also insisting that he doesn’t care about the other guys. You know, aside from all of the bitching he’s done about Rachel sleeping with the other guys.

Rachel brings them to a pair of horses that they are going to ride, explaining that she saw a picture of Bob the Builder in a cowboy hat as a baby, and thus assumed he knew how to ride.

He doesn’t know how to ride.

But the two muddle their way, painfully, through the jungle to another cenote where the production assistants have set up a hot tub a picnic blanket for some reason. There, Rachel and Bob the Builder awkwardly sit on this cliff and Rachel awkwardly broaches the topic of his awkward Dreaded Hometown Date. She tries to find the positive in it, noting that it felt amazing when he told her that he was falling in love with her. She leaves it at that, though, waiting for that evening to tell him that his parents are assholes who clearly hate her. Bob the Builder, meanwhile, says in an interview that Rachel “looks nervous” and wonders why.


That night, Rachel is determined to discuss the Dreaded Hometown Date with Bob the Builder, because he’s just being straight-up delusional. She tells him frankly that she feels like his parents don’t like her and that the Dreaded Hometown was a struggle for her, especially with his father. Rachel is concerned that knowing how much his family means to him, he won’t be willing to go through with an engagement to her, not after what his father said about disowning him if he were to propose to her.

NOW. Not to take away from just how awful Bob the Builder’s father was — because the man was a rude piece of human garbage — but I think what he actually told Rachel is that if Bob the Builder were to propose, they wouldn’t disown him, with the implicit suggestion being that they would nevertheless be VERY disappointed. But Rachel heard what she is going to hear.

Bob the Builder literally this entire conversation:

Bob the Builder insists that his family will come around, and Rachel is like, “If we called them right now and said we were engaged, they’d be fine with it?” Bob the Builder is all, “Yeah … I mean, not immediately … but they’d get over it.” Bob the builder then tells her that he’s not falling in love with her — he’s in love with her

And that’s good enough for Rachel who tells this walking red flag that she’s in love with him, too, and offers him the Fantasy Suite date card.

Fantasy Suite #4: Gabby and Vanilla Ice

Gabby meets Vanilla Ice on Cozumel for another boat date, but she seems skeptical about this relationship going anywhere from the get-go. Despite Vanilla Ice calling Gabby “the dopest girl I’ve hung with,” Gabby is not convinced he’s ready for an engagement.

Because he’s not.

Back on solid ground, Gabby starts asking Vanilla Ice more pointed questions about why he came on the show and what he wants from this entire process. After telling her that he was at a point in his life where he wanted to shake things up and take a chance on falling in love, and thanking her for helping him become a better man, when Gabby asks him if he’s really ready to get married, he’s like, “LOL NO.”

Gabby goes for a walk.

When she returns, she’s like, “Look, you’re a nice guy, but you need to grow up and maybe not go on a show that ends in an engagement unless you’re ready to at least get fake engaged.” Vanilla Ice heaves a huge sigh of relief, runs off to pack his things, and catches a bus to Paradise.

Bye, Vanilla Ice. We all know this show was just a stepping stone for you to get to Paradise. You’ll be happier there.

Meanwhile, Gabby’s third guy, Motherboy, he’s also not ready for an engagement in a week, and meets with Jesse Palmer to tell him, “I’m not ready for an engagement in a week.”

Gabby, blissfully unaware of this development, spends her Fantasy Suite-less evening journaling until a note is slipped under her door: “I need to see you. I’ll be waiting on the bridge.” Gabby has no idea what is happening and is frightened to find out what is going on.

But it’s just Mullet, who says he doesn’t have anything to tell her, he just wanted to see her. Which is good! and sweet! and he should have just left it at that and said his goodnights!

Instead, Mullet whines that he spent all day picturing “the girl I’m in love with” having sexytimes with someone else and it crushed him. He just wants to tell her how he feels! This is supposed to be positive!

“Is it?” a clearly irritated Gabby asks. Because, she points out, they already had a very honest conversation about all of this off-camera. So why on earth is he pulling this stunt now?

Since he’s dragging all this business out on camera, Gabby reveals in a confessional that in the Fantasy Suite, Mullet told her that he feels like she is cheating on him this week, and that he doesn’t want her to have what they have with someone else.

Well, guess what, Bub: it’s not your decision! If it makes you uncomfortable that Gabby might have sex with the other men, you always have the Susie option: eliminate yourself from the competition (and then return as soon as you find out Gabby doesn’t have any other options left). I’ve said this before in other recaps: I deeply understand the jealousy at play here. I get it. I myself could not date someone who was sleeping with — or even dating — other people. BUT I KNOW THAT ABOUT MYSELF AND DON’T PUT MYSELF IN THOSE SITUATIONS. And I know that’s easy to say as a middle-aged woman who has been married for two decades, and I also appreciate that people don’t realize until they are far into this process that they’ve “caught feelings,” as the kids say. But I also believe you should know yourself and your values and expectations for relationships well enough by the time you are in your mid-twenties to be able to evaluate whether or not a temporarily non-monogamous situation is going to work for you or not. If you get jealous — don’t go on this show.

Back on the bridge, Mullet shrugs that he can’t pretend that he’s cool with everything when he just isn’t, and Gabby is like, “OH IF YOU WANT TO GET INTO THIS NOW, WE CAN GET INTO THIS NOW,” but he protests that he really doesn’t

THEN WHY DID YOU INSIST SHE COME MEET YOU? Y’all, I’m about to go down to Mexico myself and slap some sense into this manchild.

Gabby explains that she feels like she’s being tested by Mullet: Why does she always have to defend herself? Why he doesn’t trust what they have?

She then wonders if she is going to leave here alone, and all I can say is, I CERTAINLY HOPE SO, HONEY. YOU CAN DO SO MUCH BETTER, GIRL.

The Men Who Are Soon Going to be Dumped by Gabby:

The Men Who Are Soon Going to be Dumped by Rachel:

The Men Who Have Been Dumped by Gabby:

The Men Who Have Been Dumped by Rachel:

The Men Who Have Been Dumped by Gabby and Rachel:

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

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