A Bachelorette Recap: Rachel Is the Queen and We Are the Sorry People

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“Let me tell you something. I’m not here to be played. I’m not here to be made a joke of … So I’m really going to need you to get the fuck out.” – Rachel Lindsay of the House Bachelorette, First of Her Name, the Un-to-be-trifled-with, Queen of the Fuckbois, Ruler of the Mansion that Venereal Diseases Built, Breaker of Bullshit, and Mother of Reads

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Can you all hear Rachel’s perfect Texas drawl in your head as keenly as I can while reading the quote of the century? Has any Bachelorette ever held. that. shit. down. as deftly as this one? No. Because this isn’t any Bachelorette. This is the Rachelorette 2K17 and if you are not a man who is ready to hold it down just as tight…than she is going to need you to get the fuck out.

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I did not expect myself to be very interested in this DeMario storyline. I liked DeMario and his hollering out of wedding plus-ones in the premiere; so I wasn’t rooting for him to be the creep [ed. note: hey, stay tuned on that creep front, ‘cuz it’s a big ol’ YIKES] with a girlfriend. Plus, his girlfriend seemed a little too eager to be delivering her gotcha-moment on national television, and a little too unabashed about wearing a stone-cold waffle-weave scrunchie on her wrist while doing it…

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But who cares about DeMario and how many man-rompers he left over at Lexi’s house — this storyline is all about Rachel and how she managed to take the drama-covered receipts from Lexi, the slimy “new phone, who dis” excuses from DeMario, run them through her logic-o-meter (a brain, as it’s called outside of this franchise), and calmly inform these people that she has 25 boyfriends, a dog who can currently only use three of his legs for unknown reasons, and a rented house in what appears to be an upper middle class retirement community to take care of…so she doesn’t really have time to be running on some bullshit. 

As Rachel has stated multiple times throughout her three-episode tenure, she keeps it 100. And if any of these knuckleheads keeps it any less than 100, then they better have a background in computer sciences to make their own sub-100 emoji, and some fresh New Balances to — let’s haveRachel reiterate this one last time — GTFO of here.

Never could I have imagined what it would be like to have a Bachelorette so fully in command of her own experience. Rachel doesn’t accept excuses from anyone, including herself. She seems completely aware of the Hellmouth she has willingly entered herself into, and the only way to make that Hellmouth work for her is to take it seriously and flush out one of these vampires to marry. [Ed. note: Is this metaphor falling apart? Who’s Angel? Who’s Spike?! Obviously Dean is Willow and, yes, he will develop a complex and moving witchcraft/lesbian storyline in season 4.] And speaking of the dumb-dumbs Rachel is dating, I want to take it all the way back to the premiere for a minute when there were 30 contesticles still hoping to woo Rachel. 

It seemed like all anyone could say about Rachel—and the character that the editors seemed to be carving out for her—was that she was so beautiful and smart. Indeed, they had never a woman like her. I quickly ran through a list of all of the women that I know well and couldn’t think of a single one who I would not describe as smart and beautiful. Which is fantastic for me and concerning for these donuts. 

So, I’d now like to turn it over to my girl Hailee Steinfeld — who is quietly an Academy Award nominee, a budding pop princes, and definitive queen of the teenage eyebrow Hunger Games — and her song of the summer:

Yes, Princess Hailee. Most girls are smart and strong and beautiful. If these dudes don’t know any other women that they deem to be both smart and beautiful, then they are not good enough for Rachel. Also, heads up — these dudes aren’t good enough for Rachel! 

Rachel’s only flaw seems to be that she’s not aware when a dude isn’t good enough for her. Rachel can be as smart and funny, and hand as many asses to as many duplicitous dummies as many times as she wants to, but the fact of the matter is, we have this wonderful Bachelorette…because she once truly wanted to be engaged to Nick Viall.

And that is as good of a reality check as any to remind us that this is still the Bachelorette, and two bros will still play a game of homoerotic “I’m not touching you” in the driveway when they get kicked out. Because a peacock cannot change its feathers (which would be a much better reference if this came on NBC!). Yes, of course, I wish that Rachel, Queen of the Fuckbois, Ruler of STD Mansion, Breaker of Bullshit, and Mother of Reads could be a little more like Hailee Steinfeld’s breakout song of summer 2015, “Love Myself.” That’s right, the one where she boldly declares that she maybe, definitely screams her own name while she masturbates. I’m not talking about that declaration, though; I’m talking about the other, less intriguing, but altogether more important: Gonna love myself, no I don’t need anybody else (Hey!).

Alas, us women of a certain age weren’t raised with the raging independence of the SnapChat generation. We must marry, and we must do it quickly — before our wombs rot and there are no Tickle Monsters or sociopathic amateur drummers left for us. We can scream our own name during orgasm, sure. But society and ABC contracts dictate that it would be much better if there were a Peter or Kenny beside us while we do it. Let’s get to know them, shall we…

DeMario’s Return

Y'all. After being told to “get the fuck out,” this dude thinks it’s a good idea to Uber back over to the mansion for a little more screen time. But all it really does is give Rachel another chance to show off her PhD in rhetoric. I mean—the woman can talk, and I think anyone who watched Farmer Chris or Des with Bangs’ season could reiterate the importance of that one simple skill to you.

However, there’s nothing simple about the way Rachel pummels what’s left of DeMario into the ground. DeMario tries to tell Rachel that Lexi assassinated his character and he was just caught off guard. Rachel kindly responds that all that can be true (in a tone that says it’s very much not true), “But I need a man, that when confronted with a difficult situation, does not lie about it.” Similarly, I need a Rachel that will speak for me every time I’m confronted with a difficult man. DeMario says that he had a little chat with his Uber driver on the way over, and that Uber driver — who was, without a doubt, a male— encouraged him to not take no for an answer. Bad advice, brother! Always, always, ALWAYS take no for an answer.

Once DeMario starts spouting “in order to experience joy, you need pain” quotes to Rachel (who literally has 20 other guys waiting inside for her, 18 of them hotter than DeMario) she’s had it. “I’m glad you realized that you need to move forward,” says Rachel, gearing up for something good. “But what I need you to understand is that forward isn’t that way toward the mansion. Forward is outside of it.” Do you understand that, DeMario? Do you smell what the Rachel is cooking? The other bros shuffle their feet behind her hoping they can somehow spin her hate of another man into a love for them. They ask if DeMario is coming back. “Fuck no,” says Rachel. 

The Frontrunners

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Going back a few episodes, it must be noted that a few frontrunners have already emerged. And they are tall, strapping, brunette white men, because Rachel has a type.  

Bryan is a 37-year-old chiropractor who doesn’t look like his name is really Bryan, like he’s really a chiropractor, or like he’s really 37-years-old. All of that is a compliment. 

I really liked Bryan because Bryan is hot and speaks Spanish; I could even get past his Dementor-like kissing style…right up until some of the fellas went on a group date to Ellen and it was revealed during a game of Never Have I Ever—always a cool thing to play with eight guys, one gal, and a live studio audience—that half of the guys on the group date had already kissed Rachel. To the half that had not kissed her, this comes as a surprise. Because, I guess, they’ve never met a human woman and cannot imagine how Rachel might meet 30 dudes, which probably adds up to, like, 150 different abdominal muscles, and want to kiss some of them. To Bryan, this serves as an opportunity for him to showcase that he was the first guy to kiss her, which he unfortunately does by saying to another fella, “You got my sloppy seconds.” It is proof that Rachel likes Bryan that she did not whip off her lace-front and cut him with words right there.

The other guy that had already gotten his kiss? Peter, who got the first one-on-one: a romantic day with Copper the Dog. I don’t care if Peter is boring. I would climb that man like a tree—and I would ask him to keep all of his fashionable suits on while I did it. 

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Of note: Anthony, who Rachel goes on a one-on-one with, riding horses down Rodeo Drive (not a thing, girl, no matter how many times you say it’s a thing), might actually be good enough for Rachel…but he seems far too mentally and emotionally intelligent to be long for this world.

Do We Have To?

Honestly, if it weren’t for the one incredible conversation regarding a banana during the saga of Lukas and Blake, I wouldn’t even get into this because these two are The Worst. Lukas is the guy who nearly gives himself an aneurysm every 10 minutes trying to be funny. His idea of humor is just to scream a word: Whaboom. My idea of humor is listening to all of the other men genuinely not be able to remember what the stupid word he keeps saying is: Whabam? Kabloom? Ska-douche? Who cares!

Blake is the guy who talked about his dick for a full five minutes in his intro package, but thinks Lukas is in this for the wrong reasons. These two somehow know each other from the outside world, because Lukas used to date Blake’s roommate, who Blake says is now being evicted from his apartment for calling him a maniac…ladies, try to keep your panties on, okay?

This all comes to a boil when Rachel tells Lukas that Blake has been questioning his reasons for being on the show, and Lukas responds calmly and not at all like a drunken, unhinged person, saying that he recently caught Blake standing over his bed eating a banana while he was sleeping. Blake’s response to the claim of a moron: “Heh, impossible. I don’t even eat carbs.” Blake, you fucking tool.

Let’s Detox with a Little…

The Pretty Boy Pitbull, Kenny King. If you had told me my favorite man in this group would be a pro-wrestler who goes by the name of the Pretty Boy Pitbull Kenny King, I would have said…Yeah, Jodi, that sounds exactly like you—nothing has ever sounded more like you. 

But still, I did not expect Kenny, the pro-wrestler with a 10-year-old daughter to be quite so cuddly. He has endeared himself to me if for this quote alone: “Being a wrestler, I know all about white dudes acting crazy. And these white dudes are buggin’.” These white dudes are buggin’, Kenny, and you are not. Please stay this pure, and continue not to bug. Also, at some point you have to stop leading every conversation with your adorable love for your daughter. Because I don’t know if Rachel is ready to be the step-mother to a teen. Mentioning that you used to be a Chippendales dancer, however, is a good start.

Lee Is a Sociopath Who Must Be Stopped and Since I Just Saw Wonder Woman, I Wouldn’t Mind If Rachel Donned Leather Armor and Lasso-of-Truth’d His Ass

Ugh, another annoying storyline, but a complex one, at least. Actually…it’s not that complex. 

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Eric is a young man with Steve Buscemi eyes who has clearly never seen this show, otherwise he would know that if you speak a word about the Bachelor(ette) that sounds like anything less than the complimentary rantings of a stalker, you will be taken to task by some dude named Iggy. See, Eric really likes Rachel, and he’s getting frustrated that he can’t tell if Rachel likes him back. He wonders aloud to a few friends if Rachel might be keeping her emotions in check since she’s dating so many men at once.

And men quite literally come out of the woodwork to tell Eric that he is the devil and he’ll never know love.

Listen, I don’t really even like Eric that much. He doesn’t seem particularly interesting, and definitely isn’t mature enough for Rachel, who could legitimately be the President of the United States right now. But there is no doubt that Lee’s sociopathic behavior toward him is fueled by the fact that he thinks Eric is inferior to him. This is obvious because since this season has aired, sleuths have uncovered many a racist tweet from Lee, but also because Lee is a walking microagression with cold, dead shark eyes.

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 After Eric naively tries to float the idea that Rachel might be playing this gameshow like a game, some dude named Iggy that you don’t need to retain to memory comes out of nowhere to confront him about it. Eric raises his voice because Iggy was out of line, and because sometimes people raise their voices when they’re upset and consisting on a diet of protein powder and Belvita breakfast bars.

Lee latches onto the fact that he heard Eric yelling and will not let it go. He tells Rachel that Eric’s aggression made him “uncomfortable” (you code, bro?) and he does’t think Eric is right for her. Rachel asks Eric about it and Eric explains that he just wants some validation; Rachel validates him with the group date rose; Lee demeans and condescends to Eric by repeatedly saying creepy shit like he thinks he’s “an amazing person” and he “loves him to death,” but he heard him get “aggressive,” and that scared him. Then to the cameras: “I don’t care if Eric disrespects me, okay? He means nothing … this is one kid with a bad issue.”

Hey Lee, real quick: Fuck. You. You are transparent, and you are dangerous, and this season pretty much rides or dies on how soon Rachel gets rid of you. No pressure, Rach. 

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Just kidding, there is a ton of pressure on Rachel for this season to work out okay, and it’s very unfair to her. Happy reality TV, everyone! See you back here, hopefully sooner rather than later. My only thoughts on Bachelor in Paradise for now: Sad, sad, sad. Bad, bad, bad.