“So much to say, so much to say, so much to say, so much to say, ohh,” Dave Matthews Band, So Much to Say
Hello everyone. I know it’s been a minute, but honestly, I needed a break. I tried to recap The Men Tell All episode of Rachel’s season, but even just watching it was painful enough and I Just. Couldn’t. Do. It. We get it- Lee is a racist. Honestly, the episode gave us nothing else noteworthy and I didn’t want to give that toolbox any more than his already diminishing 15 minutes. And as for the finale- well, I think I’ve made my feelings clear about Bryan for some time now. And I was massively disappointed in Rachel for choosing him. She and Peter seemed like a much better fit, but she was so focused on getting her proposal that she totally picked the wrong guy, in my opinion. Let’s just be honest with ourselves for a minute here- this show is never really about getting married. How many of these couples have actually done so? And Peter was right that getting engaged after such a short period of time was a terrible idea, so now she can go ahead and date Bryan for a while and a year from now be lamenting the fact that she gave up her chance of having beautiful, gap-toothed babies for the idea of a wedding that will never happen. But maybe her loss is our gain, because I would happily watch a whole season of Bachelor Peter. Oh, and I’m sorry that I have said nothing of Eric’s dismissal, but I never understood his appeal or thought she would choose him. That said, he was very charming when they brought him out to speak to Rachel on ATFR and looked better than ever with that quasi beard, so there’s that. Anyway, while I am still reeling over what might have been with Peter and Rachel, let’s move on to the main event, shall we?
Paradise was destined to be big news this year, after the alleged sexual misconduct and the halting of production, but this 2-part premiere fell extremely flat, in my opinion. First of all, let me just repeat how much I HATE the intro. It’s really stupid and it annoys me every single time. Of course the entire first hour was just arrivals, which, quite frankly, looked like a who’s who of Nick and Rachel’s seasons. First up was Raven, followed by Dean and then the Russian orphan Kristina, and it plays like a bit of a love triangle between the three. And then Danielle M (the one with the dead fiancé from Nick’s season) shows up and she seems into Dean too. I mean, who can blame them? He’s a cutie. Ben Zorn (one of the only guys NOT from Rach’s season, as he harks way back to the Kaitlyn days) shows up next, and he puts a full court press on Raven, which she seems not at all interested in. Then Iggy arrives with his pit stains on his shirt and the rest of him presumably chock-full of ‘roids and protein powder and it seems he’s into Dean more than any of the other ladies. Jasmine shows up next, followed by creepy Jack Stone whose opening line is “People may think I’m a serial killer.” Yep- you hit the nail on the head there, Jack Stone. Alexis shows up in her dolphin/shark costume, followed by DeMario, and Derek, also known (to me, anyway) as Bobo Jim Halpert. Then tiny little Alex, also from JoJo’s season, shows up and finally, we are treated to the arrival of Princess Corinne. As always, she has a glass of champs in hand, a headful of hair extensions and a look that says she’s here to stir some shit up. She grabs yet another glass of bubbles and says, “To making paradise Corinne again.”
Meanwhile, Dean and Kristina bond over their crazy families, and you know I love me some sweet Dean, but come on dude- “You’re the orphan, right?” is hardly acceptable first date chitchat. Just then some chick named Lacey who I don’t remember at all from Nick’s season arrives, but apparently she met Nick while riding a camel? Couldn’t pick her out of a lineup, but she has just enough crazy potential to be entertaining on this show. Diggy arrives next, wearing a cute pair of glasses and I think I like him. I’m not sure we got to see enough of him on Rachel’s season and I have a feeling that he might be entertaining here in paradise. DeMario and Corinne flirt at the bar and she seems completely hammer times already. Vinny, who appeared on paradise last year and got dumped for the guy with the lamp, is back, but I cannot for the life of me remember whose season he was originally on. Matt from Rachel’s season arrives in his penguin suit and he appears to have gotten himself some hair plugs since last we saw him. Good on him. Nick from some season long ago is wasted and hitting on Jasmine pretty aggressively. They all seem pretty drunk for how early in the day it appears to be. Whatever. They’re young. What else do any of them have to do besides sell tooth whiteners on Instagram?
Amanda Stanton arrives for a third go on this franchise, saying things didn’t “work out” with Josh. Shocking. Taylor, she of the “emotional intelligence” shows up next and she and Budget Jon Krasinski seem to hit it off. Jack Stone is all up on Amanda, who basically says this show was her back-up after being turned down for Raya, the “famous people’s tinder.” Doesn’t she have two kids she should be looking after instead of worrying so much about finding a dude? Alexis says she isn’t feeling any of the guys. Actually, more specifically, she says her “vagina isn’t dancing” which I’m assuming means the same thing. Nevertheless, I like her and hope she sticks around because I have a feeling she will be highly entertaining. CH enters and says Jorge the bartender will not be with them this season, so they bring in Wells who is “here for the right reasons,” which in this case means bringing them drinks instead of hooking up with any of the girls. CH says the ladies have the roses week 1, which means some of the guys will be going home.
Vinny enters with a date card, which is for Kristina. She asks Dean and Wells consoles Danielle, who he apparently knows from Nashville. Who else predicts that the two of them will hook up at some point? Lacey kisses Iggy and I vomit in my mouth a little. Dean and Kristina go to “dinner” where they can’t eat a thing, as is the norm for this franchise, and they dance and make out, too. Back at the resort, Jasmine is over Nick, who is VERY drunk, and Matt swoops right in to make out with her in the hot tub. The next day, Lacey says her grandfather died and she has to go home, which of course Iggy panics about because now there will be nobody to give him a rose. Classy. Soon after, Robby enters, like a grossly spray-tanned, combed-over douchebag with the whitest teeth I’ve ever seen. He lists his profession as “social media influencer” and I hate him more than I did on JoJo’s season, which is saying a lot. He has a date card, which he decides to give to Raven so they can bond over being “runners-up” or some bullshit. They make their way off together and Jack Stone creepily flirts with Danielle. I guess I can stop using that adjective, as everything Jack Stone does is creepy. On Robby and Raven’s date, they ride jet skis and he plays with his hair and talks about himself- A LOT. And correct me if I’m wrong, but he seems to be wearing eyeliner. And he’s definitely wearing a shit ton of hairspray to keep that coif in line. He keeps talking about his “personal growth journey” and it’s as if a lightbulb goes off every time he opens his mouth because his teeth are just so white. He keeps saying things are in his “wheelhouse” and I don’t think I can take another season of him. With any luck, he and his spray tan will fail to couple up and will be sent home early, though somehow I doubt we will be that lucky. Robby is reality TV gold and his lack of self-awarness and complete and total ass-hattery are the gifts that just keep on giving. They go back to the resort and Raven makes fun of him to the girls. Then Matt has a date card and asks Jasmine. For some strange reason, they end up at a drag bar and Matt has to dress up in women’s clothes. It’s one of the stranger Bach dates, for sure. But they seem to have a good time and they make out while Matt has drag glitter all up in his beard. Back in paradise, drunk Nick is mad cause he thinks his rose is going to be given to Matt.
There is a cocktail party before the rose ceremony, where they surmise that 4 guys will be sent home. Iggy works on trying to impress Alexis, which does not work at all. I don’t blame her. I find Iggy abhorrent on every single level. Taylor is busy being the WORST, yet again, and Raven and Ben kiss. Suddenly, producers pull DeMario and Corinne aside, and just like that, the cameras are down and production halts. Of course it’s TO BE CONTINUED, and when we pick up the following night, we are first subjected to the marriage of Evan and Carly. They do a whole recap of their “journey” and quite honestly, I don’t care one little bit. They are both annoying and probably a perfect fit. Or they’ll be divorced within the year. Again, I DON’T CARE. She looks pretty though, and of course CH officiates. We are joined by most of Bachelor Nation for the ceremony, and Juelia and Jade are both bridesmaids, while Wells is a groomsman. Evan has some weird vows and I can’t wait for it to be over.
Finally, we are back in paradise, minus Corinne and DeMario, obviously. They rehash the “dramatic events” and CH really wants us to know that they found “no misconduct.” I mean, except for the obvious- plying young people with liquor and encouraging them to fight and/or have sex, of course. The cast pretty much sides with DeMario and condemns Corinne for drinking so much and the whole thing feels a little icky. According to the footage they showed, it didn’t look like DeMario did anything wrong, but it’s still not cool to slutshame Corinne so publicly. Anyway, they are all happy to be back in paradise, working on making connections. It seems, however, that in the time they’ve been away, a few people have changed their minds about who they had “connections” with. Matt is clearly over Jasmine, who begins acting a bit like a stalker. Alex is all over Amanda and doesn’t seem to catch on that the feeling isn’t mutual. Dean feels “closed off” regarding Kristina. The only “relationship” that seems to pick up where it left off is that of Derek (Budget Halpert) and Taylor, who go on a date and seem to be really into each other. At the end of the episode, both Jasmine and Kristina are crying, of course. Because rejection and alcohol don’t mix well, as this franchise has taught us time and again.
In summary, I think this season will be worth watching, but I’m not cool with the way they exploited the allegations of sexual misconduct. I get that they wanted to milk it for ratings, but I think it was handled poorly. That said, will I still watch? Absolutely. Has Robby gotten even more insufferable than we ever could have imagined? Yes. And will I continue to ask myself questions like this and then answer them? I sure will. See you all next week. Until then, for the greater good of all involved, please don’t buy anything Robby is hawking on Instagram.