WEEK 3: 'Is This Not Paradise?!'
|Aug 30, 2018||Public post|
If being French Canadian is the Diet-Coke of being French…then watching Bachelor in Paradise is the Four Loko of watching The Bachelor(ette). And we're talking O.G. Four Loko here, like the one with ketamine in it that could kill you if you'd had a Tylenol within the last calendar year.
Much like Four Loko, Bachelor in Paradise should certainly be discontinued, scorched form the earth like the danger to society it is — but I would also miss it once it was gone, only realizing 10 years later what I'd had at my disposal, thinking back fondly on the times I risked my life to dwell in its sticky, watermelon-flavored depths. Making sense of Bachelor in Paradise feels like shotgunning a malt liquor energy drink because surely there is no other show on television world-building its own unique set of rules, ideations, and societal structures quite like Bachelor in Paradise. Eat your fucking heart out George R. R. Martin (and while I have you on the line, if I may be so bold, please release Winds of Winter — our children are dying).
On BiP, something people love to yell out in frustration when they feel they should be able to exchange HPV with as many fitness coaches as they'd like without being questioned about it is: But this is Paradise! As though that's not like me going into a Walgreens and yelling But this is Walgreens! just because I think I should be able to pop two safety pins out of the container without buying the whole thing because who would ever need that many safety pins, and now I've been asked to leave, but I don’t understand because THIS IS WALGREENS!!! You can't just proclaim your own rules and the place in which you're currently standing, and expect people to understand the correlation.
Doing my best to read between the lines, I've come to understand that on Bachelor in Paradise, the worst thing you can do is express honest confusion about your own feelings; and the most admirable thing you can do is display a past littered with broken engagements and failed relationships. WUT, you might be asking. Let me explain:
When Benoit, that petite slice of French Canadian earnestness, arrives on the beach fresh off a broken engagement with Claire from Bachelor Winter Games, he says, "This environment has worked twice for me, so why not a third time?" This is always fascinating logic to me; everyone loves using it to justify their continued matriculation through this franchise, but their very availability to be on another show is proof that It! Didn't! WORK!
Benoit's logic is like if he trained for a marathon twice using the same method, puttered out at the 25th mile marker, shit his pants, and when the next Montreal Marathon deadline approached, thought, This method has worked for me twice now—why not shit my pants one more time? The worst thing that can happen is guaranteed dehumanizing embarrassment! You better believe that even sensible-seeming Becca, whose chest cavity was cut open using a Fisher Price scalpel by this franchise, marched her happy ass right back all, I've seen this process work! when The Bachelorette came calling.
So if Benoit got broken up with fourth-from-last on the Canadian Bachelorette…and then got engaged as a result of Bachelor Winter Games…but is now single enough to be on Bachelor in Paradise…how is that this environment working for you, Benoit?! BENOIT! This environment is destroying you.
Every time you return to Bachelor in Paradise, or Bachelor Winter Games, or Bachelor Vegas Vacation, or 2 Fast 2 Bachelor, or Honey I Shrunk The Bachelor or whatever, it's like you’re creating a horcrux — a sin so grave, it breaks off a part of your soul. And now, Benoit, a piece of your soul lives in a World Market throw pillow that's been sitting outside, slowly accumulating mildew for the last two weeks because the BiP interns are supposed to take the pillows inside at night, but they don't. They DON'T, Benoit!
[Ed note: is Benoit starting to seem like it's not a name any more? If I just started calling him Lacroix, would you even notice the difference?]
Still, what I am forcing myself to understand as Bachelor in Paradise Stockholm-syndromes me into submission one exposed abdominal muscle at a time, is that this environment doesn’t work for Benoit because it's a good environment in which to find a lasting love; this environment works for Benoit because the people inside of it are operating under some sort of collective logic that you and I — people who understand that off-the-shoulder swimsuits are cute but laughably impractical — could never hope to understand.
In this environment, Benoit has found his like minds. In this environment, Benoit has found Jenna, who in the middle of their successful date, says to the camera, "He was engaged not too long ago, so I feel like that is just a sign that he's open to commitment." Sure, sure, that’s just simple math, Jenna.
If you've noticed that I'm dwelling on something that happened in the last 20 minutes of the second episode of week 3, that's because remembering everything that happens in four hours of Bachelor in Paradise is harrowing, particularly this week. To my count, there were upwards of four love triangles, three love squares, two aggressive male outbursts, and more mouth noises than I could ever believe God has written into His divine plan.
And, listen, I understand that if you're watching the season live, then you've already watched four more hours than what I'm discussing here. My only hope is that recalling back to last week’s BiP has the effect of when you have a sudden memory, and you're like:
Was that a dream or did that really happen? Nooo, it almost definitely had to be a dream, because it SEEMS very real that I told a manicurist I once microwaved a Wendy's Junior Bacon Cheeseburger in the foil wrapper and nearly burnt my house down when I was seven…but then the manicurist turned into a clown. So that was definitely, probably not real.
Well, my friends, it was real, and this is that clown:
TIA (BRIEFLY) GETS HER GROOVE BACK
Of all the wonderful things that will fall to the wayside in this recap like John's dad jokes and Eric so sincerely saying, "If Joe leaves, I will be honest — I will be hurt," and Krystal sage-ing vaginas…Tia swatting down Chris' gaslighting like Patrick Ewing blocking an eight year old is something I shan't soon forget. I must have looked like I was watching a highlight reel of my own life while I gazed gleefully at Chris flounder around in his own idiocy — I tell you, it was pure bliss.
Week 3 picks back up on Chris bragging about how he has now kissed, not one, but two women in his life, not knowing that one of them has already heard the news herself. Tia marches up to Chris and demands the truth, something Chris is quite incapable of delivering on account of being filled right up to the eyeballs with bullshit (presumably, that is why his hairline looks like that). Tia says, "It's not that big of a deal, it's fine, but do you understand that you looked me in the eye for an hour and told me, 'I'm gonna fight for you'" What Tia means is: I was never into you, so it means nothing to me personally that you kissed another woman, however, I need you to acknowledge that you are a liar…
”Yeah, and that was real,” says Chris of his assurances from the night before that he’s only there for Tia, moments before kissing Krystal and telling all his bros about his smooth player moves in his cool, slick bandanna.
If you don't know what gaslighting is, it's a form of psychological manipulation wherein someone (often men) seek to make someone else (often women) question their own perception and memory by convincing them that they're insane for believing what they believe. This is what Chris attempts to do here, and you can go ahead and call Tia Benjamin-Fucking-Franklin because she just invented electricity, and she has absolutely no use for your old ass gaslight technology, CHRIS!
Chris, who has been bragging all over the beach that he kissed someone else, tells Tia he likes her a lot, so she says, "I don't believe you." Then this dummy says, "If that's what you feel…" as though he is not the one who's being an insane, manipulative liar. But have no fear: Mrs. Tia Franklin herself snaps back, "It's not because I feel that, it's the fucking facts!"
Chris actually uses the motto written on the Gaslighters R’ Us crest — "You're making no sense" — while Tia is reminding him of the factual evidence that he told her he was invested in her, and would "fight for her" [ed. note: I still honestly do not know what this means] one hour before making out with the first woman to show an interest in him. It is sick.
"How dare you say that I deserve the best and that I deserve someone to fight for me, and then go behind my back and do something completely different," Tia says. Tia might be frustrating sometimes with this Colton stuff, but Tia is perfection in the face of Chris's nasty manipulation attempts; it's incredible how much more clearly you can see someone when you're not at all attracted to them. Basically, she just laughs and laughs and laughs in his D-list-Ron-Perlman face.
The entire take down is both euphoria-inducing, and also really terrifying to watch knowing that Chris is out in the world right now, likely interacting with other human women. Especially watching what happens when an unassuming, and definitely a little drunk Krystal wanders over to see what's going on. As Krystal is approaching, Chris tells Tia, determinedly still thinking he can convince her he hasn't done anything wrong: "Tia, I know what I want." Meaning that he wants Tia…
And the second Krystal arrive, he starts saying to Tia that he assumed she was trying to make it work with Colton, and when Tia asks why he wouldn’t have just asked her about it, Chris says…"I feel like it's not my business." As if Chris has ever thought anything, anything, anything, ever, ever, ever was not his business.
Tia tells Krystal not to worry about it, because she’s taking herself out of this isosceles. And Chris — this absolute nightmare person — says, "That's fine, I had already made that decision." When Tia asks what decision he could possibly be referring to, he says, "That I was pulling myself out of this."
I once saw an industrial snake have to be brought into a camp for middle school boys to unblock the plumbing, and even that was not as full of shit as Chris. Tia just laughs in his face, and he tells her they're "more than fine" here. But the second she walks away and Krystal tries to talk to Chris about what just happened, he ignores her and sulks away to the bar, where he asks Jordan, I kid you not:
Jordan — Jordan! — tells Chris: "Do me a favor, and when you make moves, just tell the fucking world you're making moves." I could have said it better myself, but I won't, because if even Jordan knows Chris is an idiot, then why spend any more time on him?
BIBIANA FOR BACHELOR
We have lost a queen too soon. It was clear from the moment Bibiana stepped into Paradise with her talk of vagina whispers and killing her Paradise brethren via booty, that she mentally stood above the rest. But in week 3, Bibi proved that she also emotionally stood above the rest. When Krystal is upset because Chris snubbed her, Bibiana tells her what a good person she's been in Paradise, and not to worry: "If you and I are talking right now, think about that — I know you're not a bitch, Krystal!"
Only Bibiana could make calling herself a bitch a really nice moment. And certainly only Bibiana could make me somehow…kind of…I don’t know what's happening…root for Colton and Tia??? It's not like I want them to get married…I don’t care — I don’t know these people! I just want them to get happy or get off my screen, and Bibiana is a key player in making that happen for me. She sits Colton down, and basically scares him into being vulnerable.
Bibiana shares with Colton that most of her own relationships have been bad. "Everyone just keeps saying to me, like, wait around for that person," she tells Colton, getting emotional: "Here's a person that's, like, madly in love with you, Colton — do not complicate it."
I've been trying to understand this whole "fight for the relationship of someone you've only been on two dates with ever" thing, and I think I finally get it when Bibiana tells Colton, "In the end, the only person [Tia's] waiting for is you." Tia doesn’t want someone who will "fight for her" — she wants someone who will listen to Bibiana when Bibiana tells him to love her. And in Colton, she has found that.
Once Colton and Tia have finally decided to, I don't know, see what it's like to like each other — and once Tia has gotten every single memorable Grey's Anatomy line out of her system (that's "my person" and "choose me" officially marked off your Bingo cards) — Bibiana does her best work yet…
All of the other Paradise dwellers notice that Tia and Colton are finally having a chaste makeout on the daybeds after deciding to couple up, and they give a big cheer. Except for Chris, who's sulking at the bar and has the nerve to whine to the group at large: "I was used as a pawn, is that fair to say?"
And Bibiana, a legend among knuckleheads, finishes zipping up her makeup bag, rolls her head over to him drolly and says, "Chris, I'm gonna be a little bit of a bitch here — it was never about you."
KENNY THE KING
At least my other favorite, Kenny, got his due in week 3. Jacqueline from Arie's season — who I always think is concert pianist of some kind, but she isn’t, she just looks like she'd be a concert pianist of some kind — arrives in Paradise, like, five minutes before the rose ceremony which is on her birthday because the BiP producers use their powers strictly for evil.
But when Jacqueline asks Kenny on a date, it seems like they might have actually made a connection. There's not a lot of sexual chemistry, but this is now the second week in a row that has featured a Bachelor in Paradise date where things were discussed that I actually had to google to make sure I was getting the spelling correct. Which is to say, they didn't just say "I'm looking for someone I can trust" over and over until they turned to dust and were reabsorbed into the Earth's atmosphere. They mention two different works of Edgar Allen Poe — they were both thinking of a different one, you see!
It's a wild time, but is it enough to make up for the fact that Kenny is basically the only tolerable man left on the market?
No, no, it is not. Back on the beach, Annaliese is plotting how to turn her friendship with Kenny into a rose and Bibiana is — well, Bibiana is pulling her tots out.
It's not a bad plan, but Kenny ultimately responds more strongly to Annaliese's rational call to action: "For me, it takes a while to sometimes present a sexual energy,” she says, uh, honestly. “I'm not as open as I could be, but I don’t want to close doors — even though I know we probably have a very close friendship at this point, I don’t want to close that door." Those are the words of a 33-year-old woman who has done some introspection and knows what she does and does not have to offer. But if we were only dealing with rational, straighforward Kennys and Annalieses, we wouldn’t have much of a show, now would we…
EGO IS A HULLUVA DRUG
I don't think Jordan is an evil man; I think Jordan is a desperately egotistical man who confuses confidence with pride. When Jenna briefly entertains David giving her a stuffed dog for no reason except because production told him to, Jordan, uh — how do I say this sensitively — loses his gotdang mind? David suuuuuuper sucks (man that guy sucks so much!), and perhaps if Jordan had been able to keep his cool and explain to Jenna-who-he-is-maybe-already-in-love-with that David has a history of petulantly trying to get under his skin, that would have been fine…
Instead, Jordan marches over like a deranged toddler, snatches the dog out of Jenna-who-he-is-maybe-already-in-love-with's hands, drags it down to the water, briefly pretends to choke it in what is suspiciously not a very performative way, and then throws it in the ocean. Have I mentioned that Jordan is wearing a tropical-print three piece suit that he seems to have lost both the shirt and blazer to, leaving him in only pants and a vest, having the effect of a waiter at a Honolulu TGIFridays? Because he is.
Eric gets it:
When Jenna, much more graciously than I, tries to speak with Jordan, he tells her "nothing" is wrong and stomps around pouting: "I'm confident, I'm fucking floral, you want to clap at me — okay, I'll bring the thunder." The thunder is acting like an upset seventh grader and lashing out at unsuspecting victims because he's feeling hurt.
Due to the grown man playing dress up and tossing around stuffed toys, most everyone else is nervous laughing, trying to figure out what's going on. So, Jordan sees Chelsea and Jubilee laughing, and rather than acknowledging that he's feeling vulnerable and sharing that vulnerability with Jenna, he screams at Jubilee and Chelsea: "Stop chirping at me — I've got a real connection, you're envious! You wanna hate? Shut the fuck up!"
You know, i think a lot of the reason I watch the Bachelor franchise is because it gives my superiority complex a nice, unhealthy stroke — but when observing many of the women in Paradise this season, I constantly find myself thinking: Wow, they are much more patient, level-headed, and not at all rage-y in times of intensity than I could ever be.
But even that is stroking my own ego, thinking about what I might have clapped back at Jordan in this moment. You know what I would have really done? Cried. Maybe I would have laughed nervously like Chelsea and Jubilee, but then I would have gone in the un-air-conditioned bathrooms and had a sweaty cry, wondering why this angry man yelled at me. Because that's what you do when someone unexpectedly gets really aggressive with you and you have no idea why.
But not Chelsea and Jubilee; I would think they'd be the worst women there to cross because they both seem incredibly self-assured, but I guess that's the exact reason that they just shrug it off.
Jordan does some more stomping around on everyone else's night, complaining that he's been such a good guy this whole time.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: nothing screams "good guy" like a guy who’s a.) tired of being a good guy, and b.) feels that he's owed something for it. To Jordan's ever-so-slight credit, he is above the likes of Chris, or later, Leo, because he at least listens to the people who inform him that he was taking he was being an aggressive, insecure, scary jerk when he screamed at two women to shut the fuck up. Annaliese and Eric both take the time to talk Jordan down and let him know that it's clear he took his anger with David out on two undeserving people, and he needs to apologize.
And when Jordan approaches the Rose Ceremony late, Eric tells him in front of everyone, "I think you owe all these ladies an apology, brother … maybe you was in your pride, you was in your ego, but they do not deserve that, especially on this night where they don't have the power and could be going home."
We. Stan. A. Mothafuggin. ALLY.
And we perhaps tolerate, at least for one more week, a Jordan who owns up to what he did, looks everyone in the eye and says he's genuinely sorry for misinterpreting the situation and lashing out. Jenna, for her part, still gives Jordan her rose, but she's not some naïve pushover. "If something just flows out that easy, I guarantee its not the first time it's happened,” Jenna says. “I don't talk to anybody like that."
SOMEONE SAVE KENDALL!!!
Let it be stated first and foremost that Leo has been accused by multiple women (mostly via Bekah's M’s Instagram page) of sexual harassment, which he has denied. But the women of Bachelor in Paradise don't know that — they just know that he is a new, large man, and they go all starry-eyed, proclaiming him many variations of "a whole lotta man."
Which is crazy, because Leo has a number of my own personal least attractive qualities in a man:
We have the exact same hair.
He likes to say "How are you single?" which I just such a dumb question to begin with because what is Chelsea going to say: "Oh I actually have deep seated vulnerability issues and a whole ass child I'm raising by myself?" But also because he intends that wonderment at Chelsea’s singleness as a compliment. Which is a real shoots-and-ladders-style shortcut to knowing that Leo only sees a woman's value in direct correlation to her relationship with a man, or more specifically, him. Is that a leap? NO. This guy is gross!
And I know that because he calls grown ass women "Miss Kendall." Yuuuuuuck.
From the moment Leo pulls Kendall aside and asks her how everything’s gone for her in Paradise, and she says, "Everyone is so sweet!" without mentioning her two-week courtship with Grocery Store Joe…you know it's over for Grocery Store Joe. After she says yes to the date card from Leo, Kendall tells Joe, "I think right now, it's so early on in this, it would just be detrimental not to go on this date." Joe's all, Not to me, but go for it, I guess.
Listen, Joe is not an extraordinary man; he is a simple man, and in Paradise, that makes him a little bit extraordinary. When Kendall tells him she's going out with another dude, he doesn’t freak out and get mad at Kendall, or freak out and get mad at Leo…
He just repeatedly tells Kendall that he hopes she has a bad time on her date. "I hope it rains, and I hope it's a terrible time," Joe says in a Chicago accent thicker than Leo's hair could ever hope to be.
Narrator voice: It did not rain, it was not a terrible time.
Watching Kendall grow closer to Leo over the course of a very weird date was like watching Godzilla pick up a human woman and having that human woman suddenly come to think, “Sure, I could fall in love with this large lizard.” I'm not calling Leo a lizard-person, per se, but he did always seem to be warmer than he wanted to be, and he definitely likes to dart his little forearms out to unexpectedly stroke women's hair and cradle their necks. It really creeps me out! KEEP YOUR KINO TO YOURSELF YA'NASTY.
Anyway, this date…is absurd. Jorge is there, whose efforts I will always support, but ain't no way en infierno my guy wrote a romance novel called Lágrimas En El Paraíso. But Leo looks like Fabio, so naturally, Kendall and Joe have to pose for sultry photos to go on the cover of Jorge's pretend romance novel. Sultry…isn't really Kendall's thing.
So they more than make up for it by eating each other's faces all over the AirBnB porn set on which they're filming…
And let's just quickly state for the record that the blurring of Kendall's clearly covered butt is some sexist-ass-nonsense (literally). If we're going to keep pretending the women are showing their butts every time they're in a mildly sexual situation on this show, how about how about we start throwing in some fake boner-blurs for the dudes, huh? I take very few stands here, but ban the black box, or bring on the boners blurs, Bachelor in Paradise!
Kendall and Leo exchange the typical "You're deep? No way, I'm deep too! Oh, you know who you are? I know who I am too!" statements that basically equivocate the fact that they are both human people. (I mean they're 100 percent both humans and not at all a lizard person, no chance. No…chan…ce…) But mostly, Kendall seems to be exploring a, uh, physical connection to Leo that she was perhaps not finding before.
While Leo and Kendall make out, Joe is telling Wells that he was falling in love with Kendall, and still very sincerely hoping that she's having a bad time, but he's seeming less and less confident as time goes on. I would say that confidence that Kendall had a bad time with Leo plummets to an all-time low when they both arrive back on the beach wet and clad in robes. Kendall sits down with Joe, and tries to be cute and casual, but Joe is ready for the post-game breakdown:
"We kissed, yeah," Kendall responds, which kind of like Chris Harrison saying, "I take the occasional day off, yeah." Joe, who's really been keeping his nose clean briefly spirals into some light slut-shaming, slurring back to Kendall, "Oh, you're just kissing everybody now?" And that's when I realize…Joe is quite drunk!
Jordan confirms: "Leo is talking to every girl here, and Joe…is drinking."
Kendall frets over her situation, telling Astrid, "Leo is so open, he talks so much. It's such a freakin' contrast to Joe!" Meanwhile, Leo — who has previously declared that he would commit to Kendall right then and there if she wanted to — is off weirdly kissing the forehead of every other blonde woman he can find. Proving once more that evergreen Paradise proverb:
A brochacho telling you an honest little is worth far more than a brochacho telling you a lying lot.
"Deep down, I know Leo is right for me, and I see him as more of a long term thing," Kendall says while Leo tells Chelsea that he wants to get caught in the rain with her — AAAACK — and they hardcore make out (I’m talking boner-blur-worthy).
The next day, when Kendall asks Leo if would be jealous if she continues to see how things go with Joe, Leo replies — I kid you not: "Well, yeah, I'm an alpha, and I don’t want any guy to really think they could have you if I'm here." Excuse me, ‘have you’?! But wait, he's not done dragging his knuckles across the ground just yet. "You want your woman to just kind of be yours," Leo says, but I can't quite discern which of the women whom he has tongue-bathed in the last 12 hours he would be referring to. And Kendall, bless her appeasing heart is all, Oh yeah, absolutely, I'm the same way. Open your eyes, Kendall; you in danger, girl!
Joe is off somewhere with a Charlie Brown cloud over his head, shoring up his confidence: "I gotta put in some work ta prove ta Kendall dat we should be ta'gedder." This is going to take everything you've got, Joe — please, whatever you do, don't consult Jordan.
What to say about a date card for Colton that comes in and ruins the perfectly chaotic time we were having with Jordan throwing dogs in the ocean and Leo definitely-probably-maybe-but-it's-possible-have-you-ever-seen-him-in-a-room-with-another-reptile not being a lizard-man. Colton chooses Tia and they head to another date where Jorge has been ripped from his entrpreneurial tourism business once more. This time — because the producers are apparently as exhausted by filling four hours as we are — Jorge is hosting a game of musical chairs.
But wouldn't you know it, Jorge needs another couple, so Raven and Adam come trotting in because the producers need just one more emotional moment from Tia. And, wouldn't you know it, I fall for it hook, line, and sinker, weeping in this coffee shop like I'm watching the chair scene from Dead Poets Society instead of…well, this chair scene:
(He wasn’t kidding, he is good at musical chairs.)
Raven and Tia are best friends from childhood, having grown up with that same Arkansas moxie that has somehow still allowed them to enter into what sounds like a lot of terrible relationships. I can't always muster the energy to care about the BiP romances, but my emotional reserve for unwavering female friendship is deeper than the Sayulita seas. Raven looks like she's about to throw up when they sit down and Tia can’t stop talking about how Colton "treats her like a princess" (okay, Tia). And when she tucks her hair behind her ear before telling Tia what she's really thinking, Raven's hands are shaking; that's when my eyes first start welling up.
I believe Raven when she says she's trying to be supportive, but she questions Colton's intentions, and I audibly rejoice when someone finally points out that Colton has a history of "dating the It Girl." The only thing Raven could have done to make me love her more is mention Aly Raisman by name, because what are we doing never addressing how Colton stays sliding into semi-famous women’s DMs and asking to date them?
But Raven makes it up for it when her voice breaks, she takes Tia's hand in hers, and says: "You are so deserving, Tia … you should not settle for anything less than someone who mirrors the best part of you." These Arkansas brunettes may sound like they're talking through a biscuit sometimes, but they really have a way with words. Raven means what she says, and Tia listens, and that is the hallmark of valued, lifelong friendship.
Tia values Raven’s concern, but only she can figure out if Colton is being sincere with her. And when she talks to him about it, Colton is all, Yes, of course things are totally going to be different now, and I suddenly like you as much as you like me, and we’re still not talking about Aly Raisman, and DO YOU WANT TO BE MY GIRLFRIEND?
And, if you can believe it, she does!
Okay, whatever, it's kind of cute and I cried again. Four hours of Paradise has me weak. My greatest hope is that this means that ColTia will spoon on a daybed for the rest of the season until Neil Lane shows up, so that we can focus on the good stuff…
BENOIT OOH LA LA
Benoit comes in…well, not hot, as I agree with Jordan that the tall socks and dark denim shorts are a tough look. But Benoit does come in, and right now, that is enough for the women of Paradise.
Krystal is excited to see him, Chelsea is excited to see him, but nothing clicks until Benoit's earnest energy meets Jenna's wild energy. Benoit tells Jenna that he's looking for someone who's loyal, honest, outgoing, and as generous as he is, and Jenna is floored. “That’s so interesting because you're the first person to say everything I'm looking for," she says, as though everyone else has been trotting out the old standbys, but missing her unique desire for honesty. I would really love, just once, for someone to be like, Oh you had me pegged until that last one, but I'm a selfish nightmare who takes more than I give! Maybe try Jubilee?
Alas, these two fall in love on the spot, and Jenna accepts Benoit's date card without saying shit to Jordan because she's keeping him at arm's length after the whole, uh, dog-choking incident.
Jenna puts on her beachiest red matte lip for a night out in Sayulita's finest tornado; it’s a poor choice on Jenna's part, but an incredible gift to us because the editors are just too tired to even try anymore. After Jenna and Benoit toast, the camera comes back to Benoit asking Jenna about Jordan, and he looks like the kid from elementary school who always somehow seemed to have a Kool-Aid mustache morning, noon, and night.
And after Jenna answers — back to a clean mouth! It's magic. But not as magical as this connection:
Jenna: "Do you go deep, can you go deep?"
Benoit: "I can go deep."
Well now that that's settled, cue Jordan spiraling back at the beach, saying Benoit, a French Canadian, is the "Diet Coke of French" which made me laugh, so sue me. Jenna might be able to quit Jordan, but I JUST CAN'T.
Or can she? When Jenna and Benoit get back, Jordan is waiting for them all alone, after everyone else has already gone to bed. It's very creepy! But the man is doing his best to pretend like he's a person who can have remorse for his actions and learn from them. "If Benoit and her have a better connection than her and I, I will fight for her, see if I can get her back," Jordan says. "Always fight for what you want, no matter what it is, and Jenna sure does deserve the guy that's going to fight for her."
If Bachelor in Paradise has taught me one thing (beyond the fragility of male ego), it's that "fighting for" something can make many forms. In this particular instance, it's Jordan drawing in the sand with a stick.
Jordan takes a surprisingly-not-scared-of-being-murdered-Jenna down to the beach and shows her that he's written "I'M SORRY" in the sand like a toddler who's proud of using the potty for the first time but doesn't realize that he's gotten pee everywhere. "I told you I don't apologize a lot, and it was a flaw," Jordan says, not apologizing. "But sometimes you overcome your flaws for the right person whenever you're wrong," Jordan continues, not overcoming his flaws, and still not apologizing. Then he pulls out the big guns" "I do respect you, and I am sorry, and…what's a guy gotta do y'know?"
Well definitely not any more than that, bro — that was perfect!
But Jordan is at least honest about his feelings for Jenna: "If I can leave you with anything, it's that I'm attracted to you; you fascinate me; you're just wonderful and you should know that. So if it takes losing the battle to win the war, that's okay — I don't need an answer right now." He kisses her on the forehead, and walks off the beach, saying whistfully…
Dammit Jordan!!! Stop living in the gray area, I need to be able to cast every person in this franchise as good or bad, hero or villain, willing to fight for a one-date-relationship or…not willing to fight for a one-day-relationship!
And at the end of this battle, dear reader, if I can leave you with one thing, it's this: I'm attracted to you; I find you fascinating; I will fight not to get the next Bachelor in Paradise recap to you a week and a half late…
And by that, I of course mean that I will write it in the sand. If you enjoyed this recap please forward it to your friends! And I you didn't, please don't forward it to Chris Harrison, because…