Someone finally said it: ‘The Bachelorette’ is a big fat dumpster fire

The Bachelorette
September 13, 2022

For these final two episodes — the final FIVE HOURS … saints preserve me — we’re back in the Bachelor Studio, so as best to drag it all out.

Jesse Palmer begins the finale event by threatening that this will be SO EMOTIONAL and SO CONTROVERSIAL and we will all be STUNNED.

Jesse Palmer then brings Gabby and Rachel out to force them to watch these final hours in front of all of us, because these women haven’t been through enough already.

We pick up where we left off, at Rachel’s Rose Ceremony, which Goose interrupted before she could dump him in front of the other men. They go outside where he tells her that after having been completely honest with her and upfront with his feelings, he felt like the “real” Rachel didn’t show up to the Fantasy Suites: that he was seeing “Bachelorette” Rachel, not the woman he had come to know and love. Goose is upset and disappointed, and Rachel is like, “I dunno, it is what it is, man.” Goose sighs that he really did love her and saw a future with her, but it’s clear he has to leave now.

With that, Goose loads himself into the Ve al Estudio De La Bachelorette Ahora van, and cries that he doesn’t know where it went wrong: in his mind, she was the future Mrs. Goose.

Meanwhile, a stone-faced Rachel watches him drive away while mouthing that it is “so sad.”

Goodbye, Goose! I didn’t like your face for reasons I can’t entirely verbalize but I also think you got treated like trash by Rachel! Fortunately for you and unfortunately for my irrational anger at your face, you’re going to be the next Bachelor, so it all worked out for the best/worst, I guess!

Rachel then heads back into the sweatbox, tells Bob the Builder and Junior that Goose was out here “questioning [her] character” (no, he wasn’t), and proceeds to hand out the two final roses:

Rose #1: Bob the Builder
Rose #2: Junior

Back in the Studio, Jesse Palmer brings Goose out to confront Rachel, and this fool begins by apologizing to her for making her feel like he called out her character (HE DIDN’T). Rachel and Goose agree that it’s difficult to watch the show back and she apologizes to him for not handling everything better.

Jesse Palmer notes that the fans want to know what the hell happened in the Fantasy Suite, and Goose explains that as soon as the doors closed, it just felt awkward, like they were two strangers. Rachel tries to claim that she never accused him of not being ready for marriage; that she asked all three men the same questions regarding how prepared they were for the next step and he wasn’t singled out. The bottom line is that they miscommunicated.

Goose, who is looking down the barrel of his own Bachelor season and suddenly realizing that being in that role might not be as easy as it seems, assures her that she did the best she could in a highly weird situation and that he wishes her nothing but happiness.

Back in Mexico Rachel prepares to introduce the final two men to her parents, the famous Big Tony and Mrs. Big Tony, and her two friends, Nate and Sam. After a loud reunion, Rachel explains to the group that they are going to meet Junior first. Rachel tells them that Junior is super supportive and that when something went wrong during her season, he was the person she wanted to see first. I don’t remember this happening at all: what I remember is anytime anything went wrong at all, Rachel would cry for hours in front of the cameras before canceling dates and rose ceremonies, but if this is how she wants to remember the season, so be it.

Rachel also assures her family that Junior is 100% ready for an engagement: he told her so in the Fantasy Suites.

Rachel introduces Junior to everyone, and after offering Big Tony a cigar, Junior admits that he is nervous and wants to make a good impression.

Junior first talks with Big Tony, who asks him what Junior might have to say to him to make him stand out from the guy who will be sitting in Junior’s chair tomorrow. Junior makes a bunch of noise about being as “open and honest” as he can, and insists that this isn’t a joke to him. He points out that this is about his life as much as it is hers and that it’s important to him that they share the same values. He tells Big Tony that he has told Rachel that he is falling in love with her, and wants to stress to him how strong his feelings are towards his daughter.

All good!

Meanwhile, Rachel chats with her mother, and Mom is Very! Excited! about Junior and how Rachel lights up when she is with him. Rachel tells her mother that she trusts Junior, that she has no doubts about him, that he is very sincere, and that he is ready to get down on one knee: they talked about it at length.

Rachel also talks with Big Tony and insists that Junior is ready for an engagement. Big Tony is like, “He seemed nice enough, and you seem to like him, so, sure.”

And then Junior talks with Rachel’s best friends, Nate and Sam.


Nate asks Junior if he’s “falling in love” or that he’s “in love” with Rachel and Junior replies that he’s “falling in love.” They then point out that the engagement is in a matter of days, and wonder if he thinks it will actually happen. Junior — who according to Rachel is ABSOLUTELY 100% CERTAIN NO DOUBTS IS SO SURE HE HAS THE RING IN HIS POCKET AS HE SPEAKS ready for an engagement begins hedging, saying that he wants to be with Rachel at the end of this and wants their engagement to be “perfect.”

This, of course, is not the same thing as saying he’s ready to propose in 72 hours, which Nate and Sam point out. “So are you there?” they ask. Junior: “I can see getting there, but is there enough time to get there while we’re here? I don’t know. But I’m falling for her very strongly, does that count?”

Junior insists this is just a timing issue, and Nate and Sam ask if he’s made that clear to her? Junior replies that he “expressed that [he’s] ready for an engagement as far as life is concerned.” Which is not the same thing as being ready to be engaged by the weekend. And Nate warns him: look, for better or worse, Rachel is determined to not leave here without a Neil Lane engagement ring on her left ring finger, YOU NEED TO KNOW THIS.

Rachel then checks in with her friends who are like, “Junior just straight up told us that he’s not ready for an engagement.”

Rachel literally:

They try to soften the blow by telling her that he wants to be with her in the end, and that he seems to be approaching the whole thing very logically. But Rachel is SHOCKED: she never would have introduced Junior to them if he hadn’t told her he was 100% ready to propose in a few days.

To that end, Rachel leads Junior outside and he’s out here burbling about how great it was to meet her family and friends and how well it went, and how they asked him some tough questions.

Rachel is like, “YEAH. ABOUT THAT.” She then tells him that her friends told her that he told them that he might not be ready for an engagement. Junior is like, “Oh, I’m ready for an engagement, it’s just that I want to make sure that we are 100% ready, together … at some point … in the future.”

Rachel does not accept this answer, insisting that he made her believe he was ready for an engagement to her right now. And then they do this for a while: Junior insists that he IS ready for an engagement (a hypothetical one to a hypothetical fianceé), and Rachel insists that he promised her that he was ready for an engagement (to her, right now). She starts crying, he gets frustrated, she accuses him of yelling at her, (he was not yelling at her), and they part ways on a very uneasy note.

We swing by the Bachelor studio so that Jesse Palmer can tell us that we are all “shocked” by what we saw. (We weren’t).

When we return to Mexico, it’s for Gabby to introduce Mullet to her family: the beloved Grandpa John, her father, her aunt, and some mystery lady, who I assume is her father’s girlfriend? wife? We will never know.

Gabby explains that she only has one man left: Mullet, and Grandpa John is all, “Hey! I know him!” After jokingly calling Mullet a name that has to be bleeped (ass? shit?) Grandpa John concedes that Mullet is a “likable guy.”

Gabby introduces Mullet to everyone, and he assures them that his family is “obsessed” with her. He goes on to tell them that he realized he was falling in love with Gabby during his Hometown, that he needed to tell her then and there, and he has no regrets.

Gabby visits with Grandpa John who tells her that he thinks Mullet is sincere, before offering Gabby some advice from her grandmother: it’s not about 50-50, a relationship has to be 90-90. And as someone who has been very happily married for more than two decades, I can tell you: Grandma is not wrong. Grandpa John then becomes emotional over his “dingbat beautiful granddaughter” and America falls even deeper in love with him.

Mullet chats with Dad and whoever this lady is, and they  ask how he knows Gabby is the right person. He claims they had a crazy connection at the beginning, but that it grew deeper, and now he can’t imagine life without her. Dad reminds Mullet that Gabby has been through a lot and that she needs someone to validate her and make her feel worthy. YEAH. WE KNOW. WE HAVE HEARD A FEW TIMES.

Gabby also talks with her father, and tells him that while she has moments where she thinks this is too good to be true, she also sees that Mullet loves her in a way she’s never had before: a love that she needs and deserves. Dad urges her to trust herself and Gabby becomes emotional.

Gabby then talks with her aunt about all of her abandonment issues, and her aunt advises her to talk openly with Mullet about all of her feelings. If she truly feels like Mullet is the one, she needs to be able to be vulnerable with him and see her at her worst. “Let him see you and all that you are.”


We still have one more family visit to get through: Bob the Baby Back Bitch and Rachel’s family. Rachel tells her family that she was disappointed to learn the way that she did that she and Junior aren’t on the same page, but that she’s excited for them to meet Bob the Builder … even though his family hates her and everything to do with the show. Her family asks if his family doesn’t like her or doesn’t like the process. Rachel:

With that, she brings Bob the Builder in to meet everyone and he looks genuinely terrified. Bob the Builder tells them about riding in on the first night on a forklift, and adds that this is the most nervous in this process that he’s been since.

Mom and Bob the Builder talk first, and she asks if he thinks he and his daughter have enough in common, and Bob the Builder is like, “Yep.”

She then asks about his family and whether or not he thinks they will become more understanding of this whole thing. Bob the Builder insists they will because “they’ll have no choice.” And famously, in-laws always end up getting along great because “they have no choice.”

Rachel has a very serious, realistic conversation with Big Tony about how compatible her job would be with Bob the Builder’s. After all, Bog Tony points out, Bob the Builder is a contractor who will need to be working on projects for years at a time. What happens if her dream job in Europe opens up and he’s working on some high rise that he can’t leave? GOOD QUESTIONS, BIG TONY. YOU ARE AWESOME, BIG TONY. Rachel insists that Bob the Builder is adventurous and wants to travel, too, and that it will work out, don’t worry about it.

When it’s Bob the Builder’s turn with Big Tony, Big Tony first asks what the fuck is wrong with his family that they didn’t like his daughter. Bob the Builder claims that it took him by surprise too, and to be honest, the only thing he really discusses with his dad is sports. That said, he really believes that his family will come around after a day at the beach with Rachel.

Big Tony then asks about the job thing, explaining that being a pilot is his daughter’s dream and he wants to make sure that is protected at all costs. Bob the Builder insists that this won’t be a problem, and he’ll just find a building to work on wherever they are. I don’t know that this is how it works, but sure. The big takeaway here is feminist Big Tony is literally the best thing about Rachel.

And then, that’s it. Rachel is walking him out. For some reason, Bob the Builder is not grilled by Nate and Sam. I DEMAND NATE GRILL THIS MAN. BRING NATE AND BOB THE BUILDER INTO THE BACHELOR STUDIO AND LET THE QUESTIONING BEGIN. WE ARE DEFINITELY NOT DONE HERE.

As for Junior, Rachel goes by his hotel room to talk. He tries to offer her a glass of champagne, but she’s like “this is not that.”

Junior tells her that he hates that he hurt her, and that he knows that a lot of that pain was because it felt like his feelings about an engagement came out of nowhere. Junior goes on to say that he wants more time with her: he wants to visit her in Florida and have her visit him in Massachusetts, he wants to see what a life outside of this looks like and be fully in love when they do get engaged.

And all of that is reasonable! And logical! And realistic! And I completely agree! And all of that, every word of that should have all been expressed in the Fantasy Suites!

Because the thing is, Rachel just wants to be engaged right now. And when Junior told her he was “ready” to be engaged in the Fantasy Suite, she heard what she wanted to hear: that he was ready to propose by the end of the week — even if that’s not what he said or meant.

Rachel tells Junior that it was so hard to go back and tell her family that she and he were not on the same page when it came to their future after being assured that they were. Junior claims he was “caught up in the moment” in the Fantasy Suites (READ: he wanted to have the sexytimes in the Fantasy Suites and was willing to say what she needed to hear), but that he still wants to be with her and fight for her.

In the end, Rachel wants to be engaged more than she wants Junior, and with that, she dumps his ass.

Back in the Bachelor Studio, Jesse Palmer brings Junior out to talk to Rachel and forces him to apologize to her, too. He’s sorry about the way things ended, and he knows he hurt her by blindsiding her. He cared about her, and sees now that he let her down in that moment.

Jesse Palmer wonders if there was anything that could have been done to salvage their relationship, and Rachel notes that it’s hard because nothing went wrong: at the end of the day, Junior did what was best for him and she respects that.

Jesse Palmer wonders what changed from the Fantasy Suite to meeting her family, and Junior explains that he had some time between the two dates and decided that he really needed to be honest with everyone. He just wishes he had the opportunity to talk with her about it first.

Jesse Palmer asks if Junior feels like her friends sabotaged them, and Junior is like, “No, they were just asking the right questions at the right time.” HOW ARE WE OUT HERE TRYING TO MAKE SAM AND NATE THE BAD GUYS, JESSE PALMER? IN FACT, HOW ABOUT WE MAKE SAM AND NATE THE NEW HOSTS OF THIS SHOW? God knows they’d do a better job.

Anyway, Jesse Palmer asks if Junior has any regrets and he does: he should have communicated with Rachel better, and taken some time to appreciate what she really wanted out of all of this.

Jesse Palmer asks Rachel if she ever has any “what ifs” about Junior, and Jesse Palmer needs to stop being such a messy bitch. They end by saying it was nice to talk things out and wishing the best for each other, bye.

Finally, Gabby visits Mullet in his hotel room for one last time before the big Proposal Day. Cuddling on the couch they talk about the crazy last few days, and Mullet tells her that he truly loves her and wants to spend the rest of his life with her …

… Before adding: “I don’t want to rush anything and I don’t want to put any expectations on us.”

Gabby explains in an interview that while she does want a proposal, she wants honesty from Mullet more: if he’s not ready to propose, then he needs to tell her.

The pair go out on the balcony, where Mullet tells her that he wants to leave with her, but that he wants to date her in the real world before getting engaged. Isn’t that how things usually go?

Gabby, who doesn’t want to force him to do anything, but also wants a proper proposal at the end of this, finds herself very conflicted, and storms out of the hotel room, complaining to the producers that she doesn’t want to do this anymore.

As Gabby herself describes it, the whole thing is “a big fat dumpster fire.”

And we haven’t even gotten to the off-screen Mullet scandals …

THREE MORE HOURS OF THIS NONSENSE, KIDS, AND THEN WE ARE FREE. (Until Bachelor in Paradise begins next week.)

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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