Are You the One? Episode 6 Recap
I have a confession to make.
This week, MTV didn’t post the most recent episode Are You the One? online. I had already seen it, but I needed to write my recap, so I actually paid two dollars to buy it on Amazon. I’d like to say that I did it because of my sense of duty towards you, consummate reader, but that would be a lie and this is a confession. I did it because the episode was that good. I paid money for it.
See, reality TV shows often fail to live up to their premise. There’s been no shortage of ingenious concepts for reality shows, but the execution is often flawed. But as of episode 6 of Are You the One? the show is fulfilling the promise of its premise. So many different elements came together in this week’s episode that I can confidently say that it was one of the most engaging hours of television a person can find. I am convinced, Are You the One? is the best reality show outside of The Challenge.
Episode 6 opened on a positive note. Last week, the house finally found their first perfect match in Dillan and Coleysia, and managed to identify five out ten perfect matches correctly. After spending half a season spinning their wheels, the house was ebullient after the matchup ceremony. Still, the house isn’t without strife. After an intense, multi-episode, manipulative fliration, Scali and Paige finally separated, leaving the door open for Paige to explore a relationship with her strongest initial attraction: Chris T. But even with Scali’s blessing, Paige starting a relationship with Chris T. will be difficult. Scali summarizes the situation best, “At this point, it’s over between me and Paige, and it’s not really hard to see her with Chris. But no matter who Chris’s match is, he won’t be happy. Shanley will make him happy.” A sweet statement, but since the truth booth declared Chris T. and Shanley’s love invalid in the first episode, their continued attraction threatens everyone’s chance at a million dollars.
We don’t have too long to dwell on the Chris T.-Shanley debacle though, because we’re treated to another bout of Brittany’s surprisingly reliable insanity. She interrupts Adam when he’s having a conversation with Joey and Wes, because she “has to talk to him.” Apparently, things have been a little weird between them since Adam almost gave himself a heart attack screaming at her, but she’s been “trying to move on, and show him that she has the upper hand, and that I’m not gonna chase him anymore.” This stunning display of delusion only escalates when she actually begins her conversation with Adam by telling him that she’s been ignoring him. Now, Adam’s an asshole, but he’s in the right when he stops her to point out that she clearly hasn’t been ignoring him, and produces the damning evidence, “You made me breakfast this morning.” At this point, the conversation has drawn a peanut gallery, and it’s almost sad to watch the whole house laugh at Brittany. Almost. As the argument ends, we’re treated to one of the best quips on the show so far, when Brittany complains to the house that Adam is “So immature, he’s gonna go try and flip it and make it seem like I’m the fucking crazy one.” To which Dre promptly replies, “It’s working.” Mic drop.
Simone then introduces us to the real central conflict of this episode when she tries to convince Chris T. to give up on Shanley. Of course, he’s too dumb to really take this advice to heart, and Shanley is obviously pissed off that Simone is trying to convince Chris T. to give up on her. The two love birds seem to feed each other’s devotion, and Chris T. declares, “If I could give up $50,000 and leave with Shanley today, I would fucking do it.” Now, this makes the rest of the house a little uneasy, as it only takes one uncooperative player to ruin the game for the whole team. Wes continues to be my absolute favorite in the house as he tries to explain to them: “The fact that you all were able to hit it off the way y’all did on the first day is great, but for the sake of everybody in this house, you gotta try and thin out that attachment you have, ’cause right now it’s real thick.” Predictably, this just pisses Chris T. off even more, causing him to declare the whole enterprise as “malarkey.” Then he gets trashed, fucks Shanley on camera, and entreats Shanley’s mother to send more birth control. Sort of a Romeo and Juliet tale for the modern world.
We’re then greeted to our first interaction between Joey and Brittany, who we know are a perfect match. I’m frankly surprised to see anyone able to get along with Brittany, but it appears that Joey is so reasonable that he’s able to cancel out her craziness. I really didn’t expect them to find each other, so this bodes well for the house.
Finally, after a dense intro, we launch into this week’s challenge, which is infuriatingly called “Kiss my Ice.” It’s an endurance challenge in which couples have to eat disgusting variants of shaved ice. If either member in a pair gives up, or throws up, they are eliminated. The top four couples go on a date, and the number one couple gets to go on an extra special separate date. Here’s the play-by-play:
First Round: Tomato Soup and Pickle Juice
-Scali doesn’t want to go on a date with Simone, so he promptly gives up.
-Jacy and John both give up, but they’re pretty supportive of each other.
-Ashleigh can’t handle it, and takes Adam out with her.
Second Round: Jalapeno Juice or Fish Juice
-Ryan throws up, disqualifying himself and Kayla
Final Round: Kimchee Juice or Pigs Feet
-Jessica and Wes wave the white flag
-Joey and Brittany are the first couple to finish, meaning they win the extra-special super date. Brittany really seems to be pretty good at challenges
-Chris T. struggles after Paige finishes: “After every bite I throw up. Then I just swallow it and throw up again.” Still, he manages to finish the challenge. I’m pretty sure he sings an excerpt from a Nickelback song in celebration.
The final tally finds Chris T. and Paige, Dre and Shanley, Ethan and Amber, and Brittany and Joey going on a date. These are fine couples, but Chris T. and Shanley being in the same group raises obvious complications.
Joey and Brittany’s individual date is surprisingly idyllic, and they get along well as they go cliff diving. The dinner afterwards is just as nice, and even the fact that Brittany talks about Adam and continues to be pretty insane doesn’t really derail anything. Joey solidifies his status as the only person that could be matched with her, when he frankly states: “To be honest with you, she is crazy, girl’s crazy, but who’s not? You just gotta look past that stuff. She’s a sweet girl.” I’m glad these two found each other.
Meanwhile, back at the house, people are trying to figure out who the best candidates are for the truth booth. Initially, the consensus is to send Ethan and Amber into the truth booth, as that will allow them to figure out who wasn’t a match in previous matchups. However, Simone leads an increasingly powerful splinter movement that’s focused on breaking up Chris T. and Shanley by sending Chris T. and Paige into the truth booth. It’s a solid move strategically, but is completely cold-blooded, especially since Shanley can’t even really deal with Chris T. talking to Paige.
We’re also treated to some side drama on the Kayla front, whose juggling act with Ryan and Wes is really starting to piss people off. And I understand why. In one scene, we see her lying on Wes’s stomach, delivering one of the stupidest lines I’ve ever heard emerge from a human mouth: “It’s a different world. And this house is a different universe. And you, baby, are out of this world.” Wes isn’t really having it, and seems hesitant to take Kayla seriously.
In the next scene, Kayla’s inviting Ryan to sleep next to her. He also doesn’t know whats going on with her, and resists her request to accompany her to the “boom-boom room.” Her antics are just too much for Shanley, who, after deeming Kayla the “tease of the house,” goes back to her shit-stirring ways. She calls a summit to end the Kaylathon, which rapidly devolves into a shouting match between Kayla and Shanley. The whole thing isn’t very productive, although it does yield a great soundbite when Shanley calls Kayla a “fucking moron” and a “whore.” In the end, Kayla stands by Ryan, and proves her dedication by blowing him on national television. We know that Kayla and Ryan aren’t a match, so it’s too bad that she didn’t opt to stand by Wes. At the same time, Kayla sucks, so hopefully she’s a match for someone shittier than Wes.
Then we’re right back in the Chris T. and Shanley drama. We’re treated to a lovely speech by an inebriated Chris T. where he rebels against the truth booth. I’ve recorded this piece of contemporary poetry below.
“Let me tell you something right now, Thomas Edison had a dream about light. He defied the laws of gravity and what was wrote down in paper. And created something that everybody uses on a daily basis. Because he went with his gut. When everyone else said no, he said ‘fuck you!’” If my heart tells me something, I’m gonna follow it, because that’s my fucking yellow brick road!”
Finally, our four couples go on their zip-lining date. The first portion is fun, and everybody is having a good time. However, unbeknownst to them, the house is deciding to vote Paige and Chris T. into the truth booth. Ultimately, the vote is almost unanimous. This decision is particularly tragic, because during the second part of the date, Chris T. says that he doesn’t care if he and Paige are a match, he wants to be with Shanley. This has the predictable effect of making Paige cry. It really is sad, since Paige is one of the best girls on the show and all she wants is for Chris T. to give her a chance. The tragedy is magnified by the fact that she’s going to be thrown into the truth booth as soon as she’s finished wiping her eyes.
As soon as it’s announced that Chris T. and Paige are going into the truth booth, Shanley immediately picks a fight with the entire house, calling everyone there “fake” and saying that she “saw this coming.” In particular, she calls out Simone, saying she’s glad her feelings with JJ didn’t work out. The house is mostly snickering at Shanley at this point, but she seems genuinely hurt. She’s immature for sure, but it’s hard not to feel bad for her.
Watching Chris T. and Paige walk into the truth booth was easily the most nerve-wracking moment this season. We were too afraid to fast forward through the commercials in case we caught a glimpse of the final verdict. But finally, the moment arrives, and our guess was vindicated: Paige and Chris T. are a perfect match.
Simone jumps up and starts screaming, “One step closer to 50k. I want my money bitch!” while, simultaneously, Shanley has a genuine meltdown. The fight between her and Simone escalates into death threats as the house works to separate the two.
Meanwhile, in the truth booth, Chris T. isn’t even able to put on a brave face for Paige, who doesn’t get to be happy, even though she’s found her perfect match. This was a situation where nobody but the producers came out on top. And it was some of the best TV you’ll find.
There was no matchup ceremony this week, which means we weren’t able to make much progress on the grid, but even though we learned so little, this was easily my favorite episode of the season. Watch it.
-I’m pretty sure they were all hungover during the challenge this week, and it was great to see who had the stomach for it. A lot of these cast members would be good on The Challenge, and I’m hoping MTV thinks the same thing.
-The Shanley and Chris T. love story got all the attention this week — and I think it deserved it. Their storyline complicates the straightforward premise of the show in the best possible way.