Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Let's chat about The Bachelor (Week 8)

This week's post is brought to you by Michelle asking specifically about me:

Sadly no Michelle, I'm still here and will be until season 4,095 of this show, which is probably only a couple of years away (we'll get into who she's actually talking about soon). 

It's "hometowns" week! I am astonished we made it here because there were still 45 women here last week and now we're down to 4?? Even though I *just* passed my required college math class, even I can recognize how big of a differential that is. 

Anyway, Matt is excited and nervous because, as he so poetically shares, "You only get one first impression." Wow, thanks Matt for translating what "first impression" means for us. And people think he's not deep. Let's jump in!

Michelle is entirely too good for Matt

Michelle is up first and Matt really kicks the love up a notch by showing up in the same top as her.

While they can't visit Michelle's hometown in Minnesota, Michelle has still planned a fun day that will show Matt what's important to her and close to her heart. This begins with riding bikes (because Michelle and her family often went on evening bike rides) and holding hands and yes this is one of those Notebook-level things I find completely adorable.

Next, she surprises him with a Zoom meeting featuring a bunch of her students back home, who proceed to ask Matt a bunch of random, kid questions. 

From this, we learn that Michelle genuinely loves being a teacher (and we're reminded she's entirely too good for this show and for Matt). We also learn that Matt has apparently still not gotten that seed out of his teeth:

After a fun day of wearing matching sweaters, Matt meets Michelle's parents that night, who are so incredibly sweet.

Matt tells Michelle's dad that he likes how Michelle "tells it like it is" and has strong convictions. Her dad then asks if he's in love with her and Matt's like "lolllll wut" (and okay he does admit he's falling in love with her). 

Even though Michelle was one of the later arrivals, she tells her mom that none of this feels fast and that if Matt proposed tomorrow, she'd say yes. And overall, Michelle's parents seem to like Matt because they can tell he makes her happy and they're supportive of whatever Michelle decides. They then wrap up parents time with a game of 2-on-2 and Michelle's mom is like BUCKETS!! 

With our first hometown coming to a close, an old friend is brought back into our lives — the ol' Bachelor Bench:

Matt tells Michelle he's happy with how their relationship has progressed and she tells him that meeting her parents was a big step for their relationship and that she's falling in love with him. And the bench tells them both "I've heard that before."

When the racism is just tearing through you

Racist Rachael is up next and she decides to surprise Matt with skydiving before meeting her parents. 

We get plenty of hints that this segment of the date will fall apart beginning with the fact that her sweater is literally falling apart, and then the plane they're jumping out of is being held together by tape:

And to top it all off, the skydiving instructor she's attached to looks maybe 14. Seems fine! After they jump out of this duct tape plane, things are fun and (literally) breezy until Rachael's landing where she essentially slams into the ground. Matt jogs over to "help" her, which primarily consists of asking if she's okay while being disgusted by how much grass is in her mouth and hair and nose. 

This incident then becomes referenced as a sort of life-or-death experience, as if Rachael was just free falling thousands of feet without a parachute as opposed to simply not following instructions for properly landing. Matt reiterates how worried he was and that it made him realize how much he cares for her. And he shows her he cares by making her hold his long ass legs even though she just slammed into the ground and told him her back was hurting. MEN.

Later during the parents meeting, Rachael tells her mom she's in love with Matt and if he proposed tomorrow, she'd say yes. Her mom asks if she's seen any red flags and we learn that Rachael does not know what "red flags" are because she says no, even though the fact that Matt is the Bachelor is in fact, one giant red flag.

Rachael's dad is skeptical about this entire thing as is evident by his skeptical drinking face:

I mean and also because he literally says he's skeptical. Anyway, this conversation between her dad and Matt ensues:

Rachael's Dad: How can you be serious about Rachael when you're dating 3 other women
Matt: LOLLLLL pretty cool right, but yeah I like Rachael a lot and when I'm with her, I'm only thinking about her
Rachael's Dad: I bet you say that to all the women though
Matt: What no, never, I am always very original with the things I say. And I'm here to tell you that I'm falling in love with Michelle, I mean Rachael, your daughter is Rachael right, lollllll

Those LOLs are not an exaggeration, he really does laugh to begin and end almost every sentence.

In the end, her parents say they're here to support her and if she wants to be with Matt, they're happy for them. Matt and Rachael then follow Bachelor protocol and retire to a rickety old bench outside where Rachael tells him she's falling in love with him:

Honestly, this is the worst bench of the episode. Zero stars, would not sit on again. And you let me know what shaped things it looks like are on the antique fence looking thing behind them. 

A reminder that Bri quit her job for this man

For their date, Bri tells Matt she's planned something that is "payback" for when he almost killed her on an ATV during their first date.

As a note, the "payback" isn't her gymnast vaulting into Matt's arms, it's that they're going off-roading in this really ugly Jeep. They eventually reach a little area to sit and chat in and you're probably wondering, oh which super scenic area among these gorgeous red and orange and yellow fall trees did the producers pick?

Mmmm nothing screams romance and love more than dead trees and grass and weeds. THIS WOMAN QUIT HER JOB AS A COMMS MANAGER AND THIS SHOW CAN'T EVEN PROVIDE A GRASSY SPOT FOR HER TO SIT ON.

Later, Matt brings a giant stuffed bunny as a gift to meet Bri's mom and her best friend, who coincidentally enough, is also named Bri.

I'm guessing the bunny is actually for Bri's younger baby sister who as "younger baby sister" implies, is a baby. And like, I don't know a lot about babies, but I know enough to know that you can't put a giant 10 pound stuffed animal in their crib. The only other option here is he's gifting one of these grown women an oversized bunny, which is also weird, so all in all this is a terrible gift is what I'm saying.

Bri's baby sister joins the party for a bit and you can actually see and smell Matt's fear:

While Bri is holding and hugging her baby sister, Matt nervously stares like the baby is going to cling onto him at any point. Looking like he's holding-in-a-fart, Bri's mom asks if the baby makes him uncomfortable and he's like "[LOUD NERVOUS LAUGHTER] no not at all [LOUD NERVOUS LAUGHTER] I am not nervous at all [LAUGHTER WHILE ALMOST CRYING FROM NERVOUSNESS]." 

When Matt chats with Bri's mom, he tells her that he connects with Bri on a completely different level than the other women because they have so many shared experiences from growing up with a single mom. Then Matt, who remember told Rachael's dad that he doesn't say the same thing to all of the women, tells Bri's mom that he's falling for Bri — which is the same thing he's said to all of the women (and their families). His conversations with every family have just been copy/pasted over and over.

During Bri's conversation with her mom, she admits she's falling in love with Matt, but scared about it. She starts crying and Bri's mom wipes her tears with THE NAPKIN THAT ALL MOMS ALWAYS SEEM TO HAVE???

How do all moms have access to napkins all the time? Simply amazing.

Bri's mom reassures her, saying the "worst case scenario" is they'll have to mend a broken heart together and anyway, CRIES BECAUSE THIS IS THE SWEETEST, MOST LOVING MOM THING TO SAY. And as a note if it happens, Bri will also have help from at least one IG sponsorship for protein shakes or wellness gummies (code BRI10, swipe up!).

The date then concludes ON THE SAME BENCH AND CREEPY VINTAGE BACKDROP FROM RACHAEL'S DATE. So this show won't get her green grass OR her own bench, even though she QUIT HER JOB TO BE HERE?!!! I QUIT THIS SHOW.

Jk, I'm back. Oh right, Bri also tells Matt that she "feels like" she's falling in love with him. 

I think Serena might not like him, eh

Serena is our last hometown date and she tells Matt she's "bringing Canada" to him. We quickly learn that the bringing of Canada does not include Celine Dion, Drake or Ryan Gosling, but instead, means this: 

My only guess is they simply ran out of budget by the time Serena's date rolled around. While surrounded by more Canadian flags than I think are in actual Canada, Serena quizzes Matt on Canadian trivia and okay sure sure let's get to THE REAL STAR OF THE DAY:

They eat a bunch of Canadian foods including poutine and can't you just tell how crispy those fries are. They're so delicious we even get scenes of Matt and Serena actually eating them, something that only occurs maybe once a season.

After filling up on poutine and other meats and desserts, they head outside to play hockey because that doesn't seem risky — being in a fries- and meat-induced haze while standing in shoes that have knives attached.

Throughout this date, especially this part, Serena seems like she is forcing herself to be excited about spending time with Matt.  She keeps saying "This is fun! I'm so excited!" and okay Jessie Spano, we get it, something is off.

Later that night, Matt meets Serena's family and this is just the first of many amazing and relatable reactions her sister gives us over the course of the evening:

Matt tells Serena's mom that he's been interested in Serena since the beginning because she's smart, beautiful and challenges him when he takes on her wack ass dates like tantric yoga.

Meanwhile, Serena sits down with her sister to talk, who immediately asks if she's in love with Matt. Serena says she's falling in love because he "checks so many boxes" and is "good on paper," which "good on paper" is in the same camp as telling someone they're photogenic, like you look great in photos! Ugly in real life, but in these photos! Anyway, this is Serena's sister's face while Serena is skirting around actually talking about loving Matt:

Can't you just hear her saying "UMMMM, okaaaaaay, sooooo..." Her sister eventually says she can tell Serena isn't smitten with Matt and hearing this forces Serena begin to face the fact that she does not actually love him (gasp).

This doubt intensifies when Serena talks with her mom and she admits there's something that she can't quite put her finger on that's causing her to doubt her feelings. I'm not usually one to grab someone's finger (unless they tell me to pull it, you know, for a fart noise), but I'm here to put Serena's finger on what's causing her doubt and it's that DO ANY OF US REALLY KNOW MATT??? THIS MAN HASN'T SHARED ANYTHING ABOUT HIMSELF??? I THINK THE STRONGEST CONNECTION HERE IS BETWEEN HIS PELOTON AND THE WIFI???

Anyway, Serena came into this family meeting seemingly sure of her feelings for Matt and is leaving with, well I'll just let her sister's face speak for her current feelings about Matt.

Love how she's like, I am never seeing this man again, so, BYEEEE.

During their designated bench time on a bench that is camouflaged by the house, Matt provides plenty of awkward silence for Serena to fill by admitting she's falling in love with him (as he's expected all of the women to say). 

Looking at this picture hurts my head because of this show is in general, but also because of how much that bench is blending in. OPTICAL ILLUSION BENCH. Sort of like how Serena's feelings have been an illusion, OHHHH BRINGING IT FULL CIRCLE.

She ends the night by being the only woman to not say she's falling in love with him, which I have to applaud.

However, this just won't do. Matt needs all four of his girlfriends to say they're obsessed with him before he can feel good about dumping one of them. So before the Rose Ceremony, he stops by Serena's room to talk. He actually opens up for maybe only the second time this season, telling her that he was intentional about spending the most amount of time with her because he can see a life with her. And this is her face, letting us know she's about to break up with him like a Nature Valley granola bar:

She tells him she's had her doubts and she now knows for sure that he isn't "her person." We then get the longest silence ever as Matt's brain tries to process that a woman is in fact breaking up with him.

He finally says he can't force her feelings before repeating "this stinks" over and over, honestly to an extent that it made me wonder if something in the room actually did stink? Things end with him asking her to walk him out, which for a second makes it seem like Serena is the Bachelorette and she's sending Matt home, lolllll.

So with Serena gone, that means......

3 roses and 3 women left, I wonder what will happen

It's like an episode of Oprah's Favorite Things because Matt's like "YOU GET A ROSE AND YOU GET A ROSE AND YOU GET A ROSE." However, because she gets the last rose, Bri wonders if she would've gotten one had Serena still been here and HOW DARE THIS MAN MAKE HER DOUBT HERSELF WHILE SHE'S WEARING THIS AMAZING DRESS:

Also, I cannot scream about this enough, SHE QUIT HER JOB FOR HIM. HER JOB. AS A COMMS MANAGER!!!!!

We end the evening with Matt saying "We're so close to the end, I can smell it," and again, is there an actual smell in the room. Why are we getting so many scent-related descriptors. 

And that's it! We're onto Fantasy Suites next week and I know I say this every season, but dear God I cannot wait for this all to be over. Mostly because I think we can all agree that Matt has no real chemistry with any of these women, right.

See you next week! Til then, find me lurking around Twitter (@cocoakristis) and Instagram (@kristimac9).

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