"Bachelor in Paradise" recap: John Paul Jones finally gets to shine
When life closes a door, it opens a window. And when reality television takes away a Jordan and a single Demi, it gives a John Paul Jones. After adding so much color to the proceedings from the sidelines, America's favorite nugget-loving, Heath Ledger-impersonating, Shakespeare-memorizing, three-named goofus finally got the spotlight he's very much deserved Monday night. And unlike Jane's evil tacos, he did not waste it.
Life's good on the beach. Not John Krasinski is still sad the show exploding its own rule book to bring Demi and Kristian together on "Paradise," but he's smartly distracting himself by letting Nicole and Clay bury him up to his neck in sand. Personally, I wouldn't trust any of these tequila-soaked Instagram models to bury me far enough from the ocean that the current wouldn't drown me, but at least they were smart enough to bring him a margarita with a straw to drink while getting entombed.
Meanwhile, from a distance, Tayshia is laughing at Not John Krasinski but also feeling interested; she's had fun with JPJ, but her vibe toward their relationship has felt more entertained than enchanted, more for laughs than love. And in case you think that's just me reading too deep into things, Tayshia proceeds to tell JPJ that if a new arrival asked him on a date, he should take it, which, to translate "Paradise"-ese into English, basically says "I'm not our relationship seriously at all." Poor JPJ.
But don't feel bad for too late, however, as a new arrival does make her way onto the beach: Tahzjuan, who was on Colton's season for a cup of coffee. Even Blake doesn't know who she is! So she doesn't have many friends in "Paradise" – and she does not have any plans to make any. She's here to find a man, no matter who's already dating who, and she's here to have a near-constant heat stroke. Within minutes of arriving on the show, she needs a fan because she's sweat out her body's entire supply of water. Tahzjuan is a second away from either passing out or snapping a fully-grown palm tree in half with her bare hands. In other words: PERFECT FOR JOHN PAUL JONES! He says yes to the date card, shaves himself up and heads out on his date with Tahzjuan.
And boy, I could've watched two hours of just these two oddballs on a date. They are two birds of a feather – and that species of bird is loon.
Forget any other drama; all that matters is watching these two martians trying to behave like normal adults at dinner. JPJ must've done a line or twelve of coke before the date because he's CACKLING at any and all jokes as if he's recently discovered the concept of humor. All that vigorous fake laughing has worked up his appetite too, so he decides to dig into the mysterious date food that's at every one-on-one dinner but never gets touched. MAKING HISTORY ON "BACHELOR IN PARADISE"! Hey takes a big forkful of what may have once been chicken nachos and takes a bite despite all of the human brain's self-preservation instincts. Then again, he's already survived Jane'd death tacos, so his stomach's feeling brave. Alas, the mystery meal attacks JPJ from the inside and is given a quick horking exit. Congratulations on JPJ setting new records for most vomit in a single season.
Anyways, this date is such kooky nonsense that you somehow forget that a bat flew in to say hi. But apparently flying rodents and puking up congealed nachos set the perfect romantic mood for these two, because they proceed to go dancing and then making out in a pool.
Back in the world of the sane, while Sydney and Tayshia both bond over Colton's crappy kissing, Dirty Dean and Caelynn are feeling happy and comfortable together. And obviously that cannot be allowed, so the producers send in Demi to be a downer, convincing Caelynn that Dirty Dean's a player who's not mature enough to settle down or stick with one woman right now in his life – and Caelynn should confront him about that.
So she does and, welp, turns out Dirty Dean may have new facial same but the same crappy inability to commit to relationships. In one breath, he tells Caelynn that he's not interested in settling down, that he THOROUGHLY hates dinner parties (what'd dinner parties ever do to you, man?), that he plans to continue nomad-ing across the globe as soon as the show's over and that it's on her to convince him otherwise. And in case all of that sounded too subtle, he straight-up tells Caelynn that she'd be miserable as his girlfriend. WELL DON'T LET THIS DUDE WRITE YOUR TINDER PROFILE! So she's got a lot to think about now – and she certainly doesn't want Blake's help with it. Way to read the room, Blake.
Meanwhile, Tahzjuan is feeling wonderful and great about her relationship with JPJ and believes it's all smooth sailing from here. DAMMIT, TAHZJUAN; YOU KNEW NOT TO EAT THE DATE FOOD BUT NOT ABOUT THE SHOW'S MAGIC WORDS!?
Indeed, as if on cue, Harrison sends down a twin-less Haley from Ben's season – and she's intrigued by JPJ, who charms her with his complete and utter lack of knowledge about anything happening with anyone else on the beach. The two go on a date together, where they go horseback riding on the beach and then JPJ lotions up Haley's butt – which has to be covered with the Black Box of Decency even when it's not getting aggressively rubbed down. Very sexy ... until he starts choking on some champagne. I'm starting to think John Paul Jones just doesn't know how to eat or drink things.
While Haley and JPJ make out on their beach – or maybe it was just Haley giving him CPR because he tried drinking more champagne – Tahzjuan is actively dying on the "Paradise" beach. That's not a joke, as she gets dehydrated and suffers heat stroke because she's been sweating ever since she arrived in Mexico. Thankfully, the crew has the cure: chips and guac. But in case having an internal body temperature of boiling wasn't stressful enough, Tahzjuan's also stuck feeling bad about her romantic interest galavanting off on a new date while she's surrounded by cutely couples making out in every corner of the set. She's definitely A LOT, getting way too attached to somebody she's known for two bat-infested hours at most – but sweating profusely, constantly snacking and getting depressed by all the happy couples surrounding one's single ass? I'VE NEVER FELT SO PROFOUNDLY REPRESENTED ON SCREEN.
No time for that, however, as it's cocktail party o'clock. Blake and Caitlin are hitting it off, but KRISTINA WILL HAVE NONE OF THAT. She demands DRAMA, so she plays weird mind games with Blake, saying that he shouldn't give his rose to her unless he's truly committed. And Blake ... just falls into line and agrees. Huh. Is this a part of Kristina's master plan for revenge? Just constantly divebombing his relationships? There is some seven-dimensional underwater chess going on here that I do not understand – nor do I think I want to understand it. All I know is that Kristina loves drama more than she's loved any person on this show.
Elsewhere, Demi is off chatting with JPJ while Kristian is not happy about it, feeling like she "didn't sign up for this." WHO COULD'VE EXPECTED STAYING ON A SLEAZY DATING SHOW WOULD PUT STRAIN ON A RELATIONSHIP IN PROGRESS?! It's almost like they should've left the beach together after dropping into a completely foreign atmosphere and committing to one another. One can be happy to see a healthy same-sex relationship on television while also annoyed the show broke itself contriving to keep them on air.
As for the rest of the cocktail party, Caelynn isn't sure about things with Dirty Dean – but then he brings over a cake and the cast to celebrate her birthday, so I guess all is well now. Tayshia's also officially moved on from JPJ to Not John Krasinski – which makes JPJ sad because, despite his pair of dates, Tayshia was the girl he was truly excited about. Speaking of those two dates, Tahzjuan calls Haley a pigeon while claiming that she's a seagull? I think? I'm very confused – especially because both are garbage birds. A seagull is just the pigeon of the ocean – diseased, loud, everywhere. Not sure that's what Tahzjuan had in mind when she called herself that. Is she having another heat stroke?
Oh, and you know how during the Oscars, the head of the Academy comes out to talk for a few minutes and that's America's cue to go to the bathroom or pour a new glass of wine or do literally anything else, because it's so boring and nobody cares? Anyways, Gerard Butler will have to decide between Jen and Katie.
Thankfully, we don't stick with that storyline long because Harrison's arrived to start the rose ceremony – with a TWIST! Or not really that much of a twist; his big exciting rule change is obviously letting Demi give a rose to Kristian even though it's the guys' week. Again, I'm happy for these two and happy for acceptance in the "Bachelor" franchise, but they're the opposite of dramatic television right now, one of them doesn't even go here, and it feels like the show's keeping them on less because they're compelling entertainment and more because the show wants to pat itself on the back for finally recognizing diversity about ten years after the rest of the world.
As for everyone else, Dirty Dean gives his rose to Caelynn, while Blake gives his to Kristina because he's an easily manipulated goober. Not John Krasinski hands his carnation off to Tayshia, forcing JPJ to go with Haley. (I think they're better suited for each other, both on the same level of crazy.) And everyone else is so obvious that I'm not even sure "Bachelor in Paradise" aired their roses. So that just leaves ... huh, we're really ending with Gerard Butler's rose? Your big final dramatic note is the show's built-in bathroom break? You do you, "Paradise" producers. Anyways, he chooses Katie, meaning Tehzjuan's gone (probably the best thing for both her physical and mental health) along with Caitlin and Jen, whose names I was never going to remember.
They should consider themselves lucky they're leaving, though, because tomorrow everyone's gotta pack up and go to Chris (no, I refuse to call him Goose) and Krystal's wedding. It's sure to be an event by the word's technical definition!
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