The Bachelor Episode 6 Recap: Bermuda, Bahama, come on pretty mama
The Super Bowl may be over, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t get your fill of corporate-sponsored misogynists absolutely destroying one another on national TV. Welcome to our weekly recap of The Bachelor.
America’s other favorite national pastime, The Bachelor, picks up right where it left off, quickly resolving it’s previous cliff-hanger of whether or not Ben would rescind Olivia’s potentially-misbegotten rose.
Fortunately for Olivia, she’s quickly spared by Ben like a Koch brother rushing to the aid of Marco Rubio, which none of the women in the house take kindly to. At the rose ceremony, Olivia, Amanda, and Lauren H. all retain their roses from earlier in the day, while Caila, Lauren B., JoJo, The Notorious B.T.V., Leah, and Emily receive roses in the ceremony (despite the suggestion of Emily’s fake-crying narration throughout the whole ordeal).
That means that Jennifer is sent home, because clearly Ben is not a fan of either brunettes or women whose names start w/ “J.” But Jennifer takes the rejection with class, clearly having foreseen the whole thing coming. The emotional toll is starting to wear on Ben, but Olivia can’t stop smiling as Jennifer leaves Mexico City. But the mood picks up when Ben announces the continuation of The Bachelor’s tromp through the American sphere of influence in Latin America, telling the remaining women that their next stop is the Bahamas.
Per the Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine, the women celebrate their arrival in a new nation once savaged by western imperialism by immediately popping champagne. Also per the Harrison Doctrine, we find out that this episode will include three dates: the one-on-one, the group date, and the grandaddy of them all, the two-on-one date. Caila is awarded the one-on-one date (“Let’s see if our love is reel,” -some poor English major now interning for ABC), which Ben shows up for wearing a blue dress shirt unbuttoned to his belly button, a look you can only pull off if you’re somebody who’s name is most frequently mentioned adjacent to Chris Soules.
Although I half expected the show to continue its theme of air superiority by having Caila and Ben hop into a seaplane, the two instead go sailing on a pretty dope yacht. Ben takes advantage of the moment to subtly grind up on Caila while she’s fishing, eventually hooking a huge-ass fish it must have taken a Bachelor producer a solid 8 hours to catch.
Back at the house, Leah is having a genuine-ish breakdown, crying in the bathroom over the fact that she’s never had a one-on-one with Ben despite other women in the house getting multiple one-on-ones. It’s a perceived slap in the face, especially considering that she lives in the same city as Ben, meaning that right this instant they could be having NFL-sanctioned coitus to produce more Broncos fans after the Super Bowl.
At their dinner date, Ben and Caila continue to confuse me by refusing to touch their food, while Caila confuses Ben by telling him that, although she “feels like I’m falling in love with you,” she also is scared to commit to somebody who’s heart she might break. Either she’s starting to reconsider committing to Ben for the 6 months they’d have together before calling off their engagement, or else she’s already been promised a role as the next Bachelorette. Ben apparently likes being confused though, and he’s got his confused-and-slightly-hurt-but-still-earnest face down cold, so he gives her the rose anyways. Good work Caila, you’re great.
We find out that the group date is going to include Lauren B., BTV, Amanda, JoJo, Lauren H, and Leah, setting up a tour-de-force two-on-one date between Olivia and Emily. It’s going to be incredible, like Michael Corleone going up against Leo’s character in The Departed in a no-holds-barred connive-off.
But as if that couldn’t be more incredible, we’re treated to the group date, which turns out to be a trip to a private island in the Bahamas entirely populated by nothing but pigs. The symbolism is juicy, especially when you imagine that the pigs don’t just represent America’s gluttony for reality entertainment, but also that the pigs are actually Bachelors past, turned into swine by Circe for their gluttony. It’s amazing tv as the women are ravaged by pigs squealing for their hot dogs, and JoJo wins the moment by claiming that the scene is “just like a bar in Dallas” — although clearly she’s never been to Boston before.
The day goes south though, as many of the women turn a cold shoulder to Ben after he openly flirts with Lauren B. “How can you date this many women and keep them happy” Ben desperately asks the nation, as the camera shows a pig tackling JoJo for the meat in her hand. Leah decides to confront Ben on why he hasn’t invited her on a one-on-one, instead treating her like “the group date groupie” (which, coincidentally, was my nickname in middle school), in a moment that is made all the more awkwardly painful by a pig rooting around in the sand behind them, clearly upset by Leah’s proclamation that she likes to eat pigs.
At their obligatory after-group-date drinks, Ben kicks things into high gear by asking Becca (a.k.a. B.T.V.) why she was being standoffish. Becca, to her credit, delivers Ben the bad news that it’s hard to see the person you’re dating also date five other people while also refraining from punching Chris Harrison every time he opens his mouth.
Leah decides to go for broke by accusing the other women for not being real to Ben, directly calling out Lauren B as acting different towards Ben than she does towards the rest of the house of people directly competing for Ben’s affection and tv airtime. Poor gentle Ben just can’t stand the thought of such subterfuge, and brings in Lauren B to explain herself. Lauren B struggles to react to that kind of ad hominem, anonymous attack, which all-in-all seems pretty fair, and breaks down crying when she gets back to the group. Leah tries to play off the whole thing, but lacks the cunning guile of a more skilled operator like Emily or Olivia. Et tu, Leah?
Amanda receives the group date rose for no discernible reason other than how well she must play to the Bachelor-watching demographic, and Leah decides to double-down on her effort to toss Lauren B under the bus by bursting in on Ben in his bachelor pad. Ben, despite doing his darnedest to pretend to be asleep while watching football, pops right up to pour Leah some wine and proceed to break up with her. He seems genuinely earnest in his belief that she’s not the Broncos procreator for him, and you actually have to admire Ben’s (or at least the producers’) move to break up with the women of the house in person rather than in the rose ceremony.
Next up comes the two-on-one debate, which U.S. poet laureate Chris Harrison has introduced as “Two women, one rose. One stays, one goes.” Fuck you, Chris Harrison.
The two-on-one ends up feeling a lot like the Super Bowl, as a seeming favorite with a loud personality goes up against a whiny Emily with an oversized sense of her own accomplishment (she’s the Broncos here). But in a real stunner, Emily somehow pulls off the upset, as Ben reveals that he can’t reciprocate Olivia’s feelings. It’s shocking, actually, considering how much more cunning and ambitious Olivia seemed than the overmatched Emily, who honestly has to be surprised she’s made it this far. You can love or hate the player,
And to be real, it feels like a crushing disappointment. For as cruel and coldhearted as Olivia’s been, she’s been playing the game right, which might have worked on a less naive Bachelor but apparently such guile doesn’t play with the gold-hearted boy from Indiana. Olivia also seems genuinely hurt by the rejection, which may have been the first one she’s had in awhile, but we shouldn’t feel too bad for her considering all the open jobs in the field of journalism there are today, and the fact that she’s a dead-on favorite for The Bachelorette in the coming seasons.
The rose ceremony is marred by hurricane weather, which Becca does her best to try and work into a metaphor for the goings-on of the show, and Chris’ announcement that Ben cancelled the pre-rose cocktail party. It’s a move of Trump-proportions, and one with potentially-unforeseen ramifications.
At the rose ceremony, Becca, JoJo, and Lauren B get roses, meaning that, unfortunately, Lauren H is sent home. It doesn’t seem fair considering that Lauren H seemed like a fun and a not-that-morally-terrible-person, but here’s hoping she can find the right man in Michigan. Hopefully either Jim Harbaugh or PuppyMonkeyBaby is available. One can dream.
Now it’s time to get ready for next week, where we’ll find out if Ben is a big crying crybaby, who Ben thinks was a mistake to let leave, and if the women can differentiate between a moth and a bat.