"The Bachelor" recap: Peter finally does a few smart things (but only a few)
If you're going to make us dedicate five hours of our week to a dopey guy stumbling his way into finding an Instagram influencer to date, it better be worth it. Unfortunately, after night two on Wednesday, it wasn't.
Normally when "The Bachelor" dumps a marathon like this on the audience's lap, there's some big drama or overlapping storyline to rationalize the audience spending a not-insignificant part of their week on a reality dating show. And this massive chunk of entertainment that can only be described as "Irishman"-esque did not have that, instead serving up some real pedestrian petty drama and flagrantly forced conflicts that had me feeling just ... tired. There was a nice telenovela-based date, but even so, after five hours, I don't even have jokes or snark; I'm just defeated. Petey Propellers and his cadre of needlessly snippy Insta-sobbers have defeated me this week. Bring me back to life, Bota Box. (*drinks straight from the wine tap like it's a Capri Sun*) OK NEVER MIND I'M BACK; LET'S DO THIS!
We head to Santiago, Chile for the second lap of this week's Iditarod-like endurance trek through romance – and this may surprise you, but Mykenna is crying again. You see, the ladies are at brunch together and they all cheers to no more drama (lol) and moving forward without all the emotional craziness (double lol). Indeed, that lasts a whole 17 seconds as Peter shows up and snags Hannah Ann Bananarama for a solo date that everyone else wanted for themselves. Cue more crying and lamenting, so much so that Victoria F. eye-rolls about it to the camera. OH REALLY NOW?! Madam Has A Sob Attack At The Runway Date Then Crushes It Because She's Actually A Model Then Cries Again When She Doesn't Win has thoughts about other people being too irrationally emotional about things? I look forward to this moment becoming hilariously ironic in about 57 minutes.
Meanwhile, on the one-on-one date, Peter and Hannah Ann Jenna Dewan dance around with a bunch of random drum players vibing through the city and rub messy hot dogs on each one another's faces. (It's exactly as un-romantic as it sounds.) To balance that out, they run into the season's requisite Random Adorably Old and Wise Couple, and ask them for advice considering their long marriage of ... 20 years? Hey, I'm not going to slight their marital dedication – two decades is still good work – but 20 years is not exactly the impressively long "Notebook"-like commitment that has people awing and "awwwww"-ing. Their run-in, however, inspires Peter to ask Hannah Ann if she's ever been in love before, and she says no – which FREAKS PETER OUT. He doesn't like that and needs to find out TODAY if she's ready and able to fall in love ... which I think even Hannahannahannahann knows does not seem like a healthy and responsible way to go about things.
Much like Peter's harrumphing at Kelley's rational mind on Monday night, this feels like a smokescreen from the producers desperately finding some drama in order to make a clear finalist seem a little less obvious. And much like that short-lived drama from two nights ago, it's not working.
At the dinner portion of the date, Peter straight-up asks Hannah Roseanne Roseannadanna about her past relationships, to which she calmly answers that she dated someone for three and a half years, but it was never love. And Peter is DISMAYED – to the point of leaving the table and having to pace around and think about what this means for their relationship and decide if she's here for the right reasons. Is she able to have the emotion necessary for love and a serious relationship? Uhhh, probably – not sure what grand love stories you expect a 23-year-old to have had. So Hannah Ann, sly and savvy, goes to talk to Peter and cry on command, because Peter doesn't respond well to rational human conversation but he responds INCREDIBLY to sobbing, grand dramatic demonstrations of "openness" and "honesty," and big emotional pleas ... so of course that's what gets her the rose. And HE'S the one concerned about other people's emotional knowledge and maturity.
Back with the rest of the ladies, we discover that Victoria F. has earned herself another one-on-one date with Peter, making Mykenna cry for the second time in 20 minutes. Girl's gonna be dehydrated if she keeps that faucet running.
Instead she's on the group date, which travels to a soundstage where they will star in a telenovela Spanish soap opera (as if this show needed more drama) called "El Amor de Pedro." They each get an all-too-fitting part, such as Mykenna playing the underappreciated maid or Tammy playing the emotionally volatile diva who stab-murders oxygen with a knife. As for the rest of the cast, Sydney gets into her role by summoning all of her "Grey's Anatomy" knowledge, and Kelley plays a horny granny – or "GILF," a Grandmother I'd Like to Fantasy Suite. AS IF YOU NEEDED MORE EVIDENCE THAT SHE'S THE BEST. Can you imagine if Mykenna got the grandmother role? She'd spend the whole time sobbing in a corner for not getting to be sexy or something. Instead, Kelley has fun with it, makes some legitimately amusing jokes, manages to flirt with Peter under the wig and old woman voice anyways, and proves once again that she is too good to be on this show. Kelley, you are one of the few saving graces of this season. MVP! MVP!
At the end of the fake soap, Peter discovers he's been overlooking his true love – Mykenna the maid – and the two kiss and fall in swooning love ... UNTIL A MUSTACHIOED HARRISON ARRIVES! Roll credits on the telenovela. NO, MORE OF THAT PLEASE! "El Amor de Pedro" looks like infinitely better entertainment than "The Bachelor" right now. Meanwhile, Tammy graduates from arson and now threatens to stab anyone who gets in her way. God help the cast and crew if she lasts for another episode.
During the cocktail party portion of the group date, Peter gets some private time with all of the ladies – including Stretched-Out Demi, who oddly asks if she can sit on him and then even more oddly folds herself into his lap like some bizarre human folding chair. And in case all of that isn't strange enough, she decides to bring up Alayah as if we HAVEN'T POLITELY MOVED ON FROM THAT NONSENSE BY NOW. She talks about how that got in the way of their relationship, which seemed to be going very well before then, to which Peter agrees, saying that they started off strong but now he doesn't see a future with her at all. Hold on – ARE YOU BREAKING UP WITH HER!? Well, that escalated. What a bizarre interaction; it was as if Peter misspoke, saying that their relationship was done instead of just saying it hit a speed bump, and instead of correcting himself and fixing the verbal typo, he just stuck with it and dumped her. You kept her all the way through the tedious Alayah drama – but now you send her home in the middle of a perfectly fine group date?! Peter, you make no sense sometimes. Scratch that: You make no sense all of the time.
After that sudden goodbye, Peter takes all of four milliseconds before brushing off his hands and going to flirt with Madison. Meanwhile Tammy's getting into another tiff, this time with Mykenna. She doesn't like that she's so sobby and emotional – to the point that she packed her bags before the group date thinking that this wasn't working and assuming that she was going home. Sure, maybe it's a tad dramatic – and Mykenna is DEFINITELY a lot – but much like the Kelsey debacle, it seems a lot more like Tammy is just easily annoyed by people, which just makes her even more annoying. It also smells a lot like the producers are just launching Tammy at various dramas and she's all too willing to comply as the two get into a mild shouting match that even Peter and Madison hear from outside the villa. Tammy argues that this show is getting serious for her now ... and really? You've spent more time threatening physical violence on this show than you have talking with Peter. Settle yourself.
Feeling bad about the yelling – and feeling GREAT about throwing Tammy under the bus – Mykenna goes to complain to Peter. Normally this is where I would say that using your rare Peter time to sob about drama and wine about a contestant seems like a misuse of your valuable seconds, but considering Peter's bizarre rose choices and habit of rewarding drama, maybe she's playing this exactly right. Thankfully, he gives the group date rose to Madison instead. So maybe, Peter is ... learning!? That can't be right.
No, it almost certainly isn't because cue the solo date with Victoria F. Together, they hang out with a huaso, or basically a Chilean horse whisperer, who teaches them how to walk underneath a horse without getting kicked in the teeth and dances the ponies around them while they make out. But even though this all seems to be going well, when the two sit down for some private time, Victoria F. starts crying and getting emotional and confused for no particular reason. Hey, weren't you just ridiculing somebody for being emotional and crying too much literally an hour ago? Because that'd be hilariously hypocritical if you did! Boy, would that be egg on your face!
If you're looking for a decent explanation for this meltdown at the dinner portion of the date ... welp, you will have to keep looking, because even with gulping down some liquid courage, Victoria F. can't come with a decent reason why she's so guarded and confused and not confident in her situation with Peter to the point of running off to a very swanky bathroom for a sob session after he calmly challenges her about her reservations. To quote a great and not-at-all relevant Vine, I am confusion! To add to the confusion, Victoria F. eventually comes back, explains herself by saying "I don't know; I'm just being weird," and Peter, I guess, figures that's fine and gives her a rose. Because sure. What a very on-the-level date.
Credit where credit is due, though, because Peter finally does an unquestionably smart thing: He calls for an unexpected two-on-one date with Mykenna and Tammy with a card saying "enough is enough." It only took him three countries and six episodes, but Peter finally discovered that rewarding drama is a bad idea and that he has the power to nip it in the bud. GOOD FOR YOU, PETER! SOMEBODY'S BECOMING A REAL BACHELOR NOW!
Tammy and Mykenna each take their turns making their case to Peter about why their rival should go. Tammy argues that Mykenna is there for the Wrong Reasons, that she was ready to give up and that she's only there for the hashtags – a bold thing to say since you've been mugging for the camera for most of your scant screen time, Tammy. Mykenna calmly answers that no, she's not. In between that, she drops a bunch of big, very rehearsed emotional speeches about finding her voice that all sound like they came from a bad inspirational movie that I will never watch. Throw in some very unconvincing back-and-forth wrestling-style smack talk between the two, and I nominate you send them both home, Petey Propellers.
Welp, he gets it half right, as he decides that he trusts Mykenna, walking Tammy out of the house. And as much as I thought she ruled for the first few episodes, I'm happy to see her go. Over the past few episodes, she's caused all matter of fake, contrived and overblown drama in the name of telling Peter that the women are emotionally high-strung, fake, drink too much wine and cry a lot. WELCOME TO "THE BACHELOR."
And funny how, as soon as Tammy leaves, the show gets a lot more relaxed, enjoyable and focused on actual relationships. STRANGE! Things don't stay relaxed long, though, as there's one more rose ceremony to get through this week. Kelsey gets the first carnation, while – surprise! – Natasha gets the second. Good for her; she's spent this whole season just wanting time with Peter and deservedly complaining about not getting it because of all the annoying drama, but she still gets to live another day. Yes, she's basically the Whitney of this season in that you don't know how she's still around, but you're not unhappy that she is. Keep getting those free vacations.
That leaves Kelley, Sydney and Mykenna on the chopping block with only one rose left – meaning SOMEBODY significant is leaving tonight. Surely he wouldn't axe Mykenna after literally ten minutes ago picking her in a two-on-one date, right?! WRONG; SHE GONE! He did get rid of all the drama after all – not the way I would've gone about it, but success nevertheless! She tries Inspirational Empowering Speech #17 on her way out, but nobody is listening. I bet even the cameraman had his earbuds in.
He also gets rid of Sydney, which is surprising since she had a decent date with Peter just two days ago ... but maybe not that surprising since you almost certainly forgot that she went on a merely decent date with Peter just two days ago. PETER DEFINITELY DID! On her way out, she also busts out some third person, so now I fully support and understand sending her home.
Amazingly, that leaves us with only six women: Kelley, Hannah Ann Susquehanna, Kelsey, Madison, Natasha and Victoria F. There's two obvious winners here, but we'll see if Peter can keep this streak of not-dumb decisions going and figure out who they are.
I would not bet on it.
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