Farewell to the “short stack Southern piece of garbage.” Lee is finally fucking gone, but Kenny still has some work to do. After Rachel and Kenny walked hand and hand to the helicopter leaving Lee’s ass behind, Kenny can’t help but turn around and give Lee a piece of his mind. Rachel feels foolish for Kenny, and unfortunately, it’s not the best look for him. After an adult conversation with Rachel, Kenny ultimately redeems himself. He’s honest, open, and genuine, and he put a lot (read: his 10 year old daughter, Mackenzie) on hold to be a part of this experience. Rachel rewards him with the rose because there is something about Kenny that she trusts. The producers hand Kenny a phone so he can facetime Mackenzie in the confession cam. His daughter comforts Kenny as he cries and tells her how much he misses her. Men have feelings. Men love their families. This includes black men.
Josiah goes into the Rose Ceremony cocky as hell. How can you be so sure that you are right when you are so clearly WRONG, my good man? Of course, Josiah doesn’t get a rose. I didn’t see this coming, but our good friend Anthony of the Rodeo Drive 1:1 also gets sent home. This stings, particularly after a short segment from Monday’s episode when Eric and Anthony had a conversation about how Anthony has been the only black guy to get a 1:1 date. This raises a red flag for Eric, because maybe this means Rachel is not into black dudes, i.e.: him. Anthony reassures Eric that there’s no way Rachel views all the black guys as interchangeable, same goes for the white guys. She is looking at individuals and trying to see whom she feels most connected to.
This snippet was absolutely curated to reaffirm the haters’ thoughts about how it’s shameful that she’s sending black men home. For some, interracial coupling translates to a snub of your family’s cultural background. Of course there is an undeniable strong camaraderie that exists between people of the same background, but I don’t think that venturing outside of that culture in romantic or platonic relationships is problematic. By displaying, and probably prompting, this conversation between Eric and Anthony, ABC heightens Rachel’s emotional strain as she copes with the pressure of being the first black bachelorette while still remaining allegiant to and honoring the black community, a population historically excluded from this fucking nightmare of a TV show. ALSO I bet you dollars to donuts that the producers arranged the eliminations in such a way that two black men would be the only two men sent home during this Rose Ceremony to perpetuate the notion that she is betraying her people. Does the market research on black viewers for this show tell us that they typically subscribe to the belief that interracial dating is a no-no, and do more viewers in general tune in when they are cranked up/in disagreement with the content they are watching? So many fucking questions. I’m spiraling.
Off to Copenhagen!
Date Card: I’m cOpen to love.
Eric and Rachel have their standard embrace and dance sesh greeting before hopping in a boat, sipping beers by the canal, and taking a dip in a hot tub. Rachel was giggly and giddy in response to Eric’s bubbly energy from the moment the date started. After enjoying the city these cuties play bumper cars, ride a Ferris wheel, and shoot mini hoops at the Tivoli Gardens amusement park. As they sit down for “dinner” Eric shares that he didn’t receive any love from his mother growing up. As a result he would run from love in relationships because it felt unfamiliar. He admits that he’s never been in love, but Rachel has him feeling out of control and he knows for sure he is falling for her. Rachel appreciates Eric’s openness, and she gives him the rose. Their date ends with Eric screaming “Life is beautiful” as they ride a roller coaster. Amen, Eric. I like you now.
Date Card: I’ve taken a Viking to you guys.
Featuring: Dean, Kenny, Bryan, Alex, Matt, Peter and Adam
The gentlemen hop into a Viking ship with Rachel and some authentic Danes and row to a neighboring beach. Upon reaching the windy beach the crew is greeted by Tom and Morton, Viking Fighting Instructors. These professionals are there to show the guys how to live that Viking life, a life of honor and strength. This event included intense physical games while wearing classic Viking costumes. Poor Dean is really not feeling this date. He’s a lover not a fighter. No physical competition is complete without some light bloodshed. Kenny, i.e. The Viking Magazine Man of the Year, and Adam fought to win Rachel’s heart, and the both suffered some light eyebrow injuries.
During the cocktail party after the Viking date, Bryan lays it on thick letting Rachel know that he can envision their future together and it’s magical. Jesus, Bryan. Rachel whispers, “Do you think your family will accept me?” Bryan lets his future wife know that yes of course they will, because anyone who loves him, his parents will also love. Interesting that he didn’t say, anyone whom I love, my parents will love. Think about it…Way to assume the sale/you are the illuminati. Rachel gets teary eyed as she tells the audience that she truly feels accepted by Bryan. She loves how he constantly reassures her that he’s here for her and he’s not going anywhere. But wait, Bryan doesn’t give out roses…I repeat: illuminati.
Rachel is drawn to Peter because he is handsome, but also because he’s a little nervous, and that’s cute. Peter admits that she has inspired him to look into the future. Rachel is smitten by Peter and coyly asks: Can you kiss me? PUKE.
Kenny being away from his daughter ultimately takes a toll. His relationship with Rachel isn’t exactly where he wants it to be, and he doesn’t want to mix Mackenzie into something that isn’t 100% for sure for real. This is inspirational fatherhood. They both agree that it’s best for him to go and be with his little girl. No hard feelings, just two adults navigating the emotional battlefields of life. How different. I am going to miss Kenny.
Peter lands the group date rose. Bryan’s like, wtf?
Date card: Will you be my Sweedie?
This date…man, I was waiting for Will to really shine. I’ve had my eye on him from week one. Rachel is in “wifey mode” and she is thirsty for romance, but Will didn’t follow through.
After taking a boat from Denmark to Sweden, Will and Big Rach stroll around soaking up the local vibe. They play some Viking lawn game with a bunch of Swedes, and they chill at a café while drinking lattes and munching on pastries (the fucking dream, am I right?). Whaddaya know, this old Swedish couple sits down next to them and surprise, they’ve been married for 35 years. The couple shares marriage wisdom with Will and Rachel. At one point the couple kisses. Rachel goes “awww” and then looks at Will and says: Kiss me. For someone who shat hard on Fred for asking permission to kiss her it’s kind of brutal for me to watch Rachel ask (read: command) these dudes to kiss her.
At this point in her journey, Rachel has “strong connections” with both Bryan and Peter. Every time we see her with these opponents she spilling her guts and/or getting DOWN. Peter and Bryan have been in the game from the second they walked out of the limo. Bryan stole the first kiss and won the first impression rose, and Peter got the first 1:1. These guys easily have had the most time with her, and therefore they are the standard by which Rachel is measuring her other relationships. If the others aren’t as physically intimate, confident or communicative she is cutting them loose.
Rachel is frustrated Will isn’t being cutesy and touchy with her. Good conversation is not enough. She wants to be wooed and cuddled and smooched, and he’s frozen. Is he nervous? Is he not really into her? Will is shut the fuck down by Rachel the second that she learns:
- He’s typically attracted to/has predominately dated white women.
- As a boyfriend he is an affectionate and passionate.
Rachel gives a big what the fuck facial expression to him the second she learns about his dating history. I can understand her being defensive because she’s not white; however, how the hell are you going to be pissed at him when you are dating white men slash went on Nick Viall’s season of The Bachelor? Will shares that he grew up in a predominantly white community. Rachel claps back with me too, but I didn’t only date white guys. Ok, it’s not a pissing contest. And no one is right or wrong for whom they’ve dated. Also, the second he reveals that he is a passionate person she knows that he’s not feeling it because there’s been literally zero flame emojis all goddamn day. So long, Will.
Another Rose Ceremony, and the emotional stakes are getting higher and higher. Rachel has to step away from the men at one point and get her shit together because she doesn’t like to be emotional. WELL, YOU SURE PICKED THE WRONG GAMESHOW/THE WRONG SETTING TO FIND A HUSBAND. Are you lost? We say farewell to the Russian. I feel truly blessed to have known him in this season, and to have bared witness to his shirtless twerking on Ellen. Da svidahnia, Alex.
PS- Yes, you’re right, Matt, the stranger from Connecticut whom we know absolutely nothing about is still in the mix. What is happening?