(Hustler Multimedia/Emery Little)
(Hustler Multimedia/Emery Little)

Here for the Wrong Reasons: Episodes 10 & 11 of ‘The Bachelorette’ Season 16

A recap of the 10th & 11th episodes of the latest season

December 16, 2020

Welcome to “Here for the Wrong Reasons,” where each week I’ll be recapping all of the champagne-guzzling and petty “Can I steal you for a second?”s of the 16th season of “The Bachelorette.” Nothing boosts your confidence about your own love life like watching a bunch of desperate 20-somethings competing for a stranger’s affection! Check in every Wednesday for episode recaps and updates on Tayshia Adams’s journey to become an Instagram influencer find love. Make your picks in Vanderbilt’s (very un)official Bachelorette Fantasy League.

 

The winter break boredom is starting to set in, and it’s like ABC predicted our need for entertainment. This week, they graced us with two whole episodes which more than delivered the drama we needed. On Monday night, we watched Tayshia say a few heartfelt goodbyes and conduct a rose ceremony, followed by a classic-and-incredibly-catty ”Men Tell All.” Tuesday’s episode featured a pandemic twist on hometowns in which various members of the final four’s families were dragged to La Quinta in what cannot be a COVID-safe manner, despite what Chris Harrison tells us. Grab a snack or pour yourself a drink because there’s a lot to unpack from these episodes. Let’s dive in.

 

Monday Night

Chris Harrison is back; JoJo is gone, and Tayshia’s self-proclaimed “honeymoon period” with her men is over. Judging by the amount of crying on this episode, she’s definitely right.

 

One-on-one with Blake

I think I speak for everyone when I say, “Is Blake seriously still here?” Seriously, I keep on thinking he went home while Clare (remember her?) was still the Bachelorette. Anyway, he finally gets his fifteen minutes of fame on a very hippie date where he and Tayshia visit Gita, a reiki and crystal master. Blake is sweating as much as Tanner did during his proposal to Jade on “Paradise,” probably because he’s in the desert, but maybe because he knows he’s not good enough for Tayshia. Gita tells the very awkward couple that it’s time to disrobe since, once again, the theme of this season is nudity. They do a “tantric breathing exercise,” which is literally just Tayshia straddling a shirtless (and very sweaty) Blake. Tayshia was not having it, declaring that she was “looking for more validation and confidence in the situation” but didn’t get it. Blake, on the other hand, says that they connected deeply and automatically, so he’s either delusional or Blake rhymes with “fake” for a reason.

Tayshia decides it’s time to send him packing and puts him in the limo. At this point, I was cheering, but this girl was sobbing like she just broke up with her boyfriend of five years. The show makes it look like she’s distraught about sending him home despite basically never showing them together before tonight, so I think it’s safe to say she might have just been hangry.

 

Pow-wow with the remaining guys

After sending Blake home, Tayshia sits down with the rest of the guys, cries a lot, says she’s really trying and that they’re all great guys, blah blah blah. Turns out, this is code for “I’m sending one of you home,” and the poor victim is Riley. She takes him aside to break the news and this man is absolutely blindsided, as they say on the show. I’ve never been a huge Riley fan, but after watching this interaction, I like him even less. He kept pressing her about what he was missing, and it was borderline aggressive. He says that the longer he stays and looks at her, the more pain he feels. Can you say “gaslighting”? Anyway, he finally leaves, and Tayshia breaks into tears again because she didn’t want to hurt anyone. If this is how she reacts to sending the rest of the guys packing, I’m not sure how she’s gonna handle fantasy suites and the finale.

 

Rose ceremony

It’s down to five—no wait, six, because Bennett suddenly rises from the ashes again—and only four get to go to hometowns. Bennett gripes about how he thinks he’s mistakenly come off as a “Harvard d-bag, which I certainly am not,” so it looks like someone needs a reality check. Side note: can someone check on Cary Fetman, the “Bachelorette” stylist? He’s been really off with the outfits this season. Tayshia’s pink floral dress isn’t objectively bad, but it’s way more suited for a garden party, or maybe even the beach as a swimsuit cover-up. Read the room, Cary. Anyway, Tayshia announces that there will be no rose ceremony; Bennett dramatically blots his forehead, and roses are handed out. Resident pot-stirrers Noah and Bennett are finally sent packing because, as we all have heard a thousand times, Tayshia is looking for a grown ass man. This means that Zac, Ivan, Ben and Brendan are all going to hometowns. An unproblematic final four? This is a “Bachelor” franchise first. Pop off, Tayshia.

 

Men Tell All

This is kind of a hot take, but I’m not a fan of the “Women/Men Tell All” episodes. If I wanted to rehash the same drama I’ve been hearing about for weeks, I’d just text the name of a guy multiple of my friends have hooked up with in our group chat. Sadly, ABC doesn’t agree, so we get to hear about this season’s beef all over again. 

First, we hear about how much Ed still hates Chasen, even though Chasen fully is not present, so Demar has to stand in for “his man” Chasen. I don’t know why Ed thinks that ragging on Chasen is going to get him more Instagram followers, but apparently he does. Next, of course, we get more Bennett and Noah controversy. Bennett is wearing a purple scarf over his suit, because of course he is, and Noah’s mustache is, unfortunately, back in action. Bennett retracts his statement that Noah is deficient in three of the four categories of emotional intelligence because, newsflash, he’s actually deficient in all four! Somehow, Kenny, the “One Direction party boy manager” (in Noah’s words), gets embroiled in this conflict; he and Noah go at it like they’re trying to out-Regina George each other. Kenny is sporting a camo suit jacket with a gray hoodie underneath, so he wins the award for the worst outfit of the season.

Next, we get to watch some random outtakes from the season so far, because Chris Harrison is clutching at straws for content. We see Blake’s chakras get a little too charged on his reiki date, according to the black censorship box over his pants. Then, we get even more Blake content as we watch Blake waxing Kenny’s nether regions. Literally NO ONE asked for this, and if they did, please disassociate from the “Bachelor” franchise immediately.

On the topic of things nobody asked for: raging, toxic @sshole Yosef is back. I don’t want to give this [email protected] airtime, but this was a whole new level of enraging. Obviously, he refuses to apologize, because he is incapable of feeling regret or remorse. Sounds like he, too, is lacking in all four categories of emotional intelligence. Chris Harrison tries to play the voice of reason, telling Yosef, “I want to try and help you help yourself,” but unfortunately, delusional Yosef is beyond redemption. He says that he’d want someone to call out his daughter for the same “inappropriate behavior” as Clare’s strip dodgeball date, a statement I had to rewind to make sure I heard correctly. 50 Shades of Sexism, anyone?

Good news—Tayshia’s fashion sense is back. She’s rocking a silver velvet long-sleeve dress with a killer plunging v-neck, so all the guys there are missing their time on the show even more than usual. I’ve got to say, Riley puts on a fantastic simp act. I don’t buy it, but he’s almost convincing. Tayshia is the first woman who’s pushed him to share his feelings, so no sh*t he’s obsessed with her. This is why guys need to be emotionally available on the regular, so they don’t fall the second they reveal that they actually like the color pink.  

To conclude the “Men Tell All,” Bennett brings out green juices in champagne flutes, because Château Bennett is a lifestyle, not a choice. Noah’s juice, of course, is served in a sippy cup. This interaction is proof that the fight between Bennett and Noah was just for the cameras: Noah takes his sippy cup like a champ and giggles about it, so it seems like the producers were working overtime fabricating their beef. 

 

Tuesday Night

It’s down to the final four, so you know what that means: hometowns! Well, kind of. Instead of Tayshia visiting each of the guys’ homes, their families are brought to La Quinta in an allegedly safe and quarantined way. Highly suspicious, but either way I really enjoyed this episode. Chris Harrison crashes the guys’ hangout to let them know which of their family members are here, and it’s kind of wild. All four men respectfully listen to each other talk about the most important people in their lives, and a few of them even tear up. I’m so here for this revolutionary non-toxic masculinity. New concept, who dis? 

 

Brendan

Brendan gets the first hometown, so we meet his brother, sister-in-law and niece. According to Google, Brendan is from Milford, MA, but I’m pretty sure this was never mentioned on the date…anyway, there’s a cute little carnival set up for Brendan and his niece, Aliyah, to take Tayshia to, because apparently there are a lot of carnivals in suburban Boston? They play ring toss, then Brendan breaks it down to some music, and Tayshia is delighted to see him let loose. The night portion of the date isn’t too eventful, but Tayshia gets along pleasantly with Brendan’s family and says that Brendan is a “sweetie.” The biggest takeaway from this hometown: judging by her interactions with Aliyah, Tayshia will be a great mom.

 

Zac

Next up we have Zac, whose mom, dad and brother are here. His bio says that he’s from New Jersey, but like everyone who lives in a two-hour radius of NYC, he says he’s from New York. First, he teaches Tayshia how to hail a cab (using a fake wooden taxi), then obviously, they go to a faux-bagel shop. Tayshia eats a blueberry bagel—which is all kinds of sacrilegious—and there are no lox, capers or onions in sight, so again, Zac is not actually from New York.

Tayshia meets his family, and his brother, Matt, asks Tayshia where she is with Zac compared to the other three guys. Tayshia gives him some BS about “falling” for Zac and seeing a potential future with him, but Matt claps back at her for not answering his question. Thankfully, he says this good-naturedly. Zac and his mom have a sweet conversation where he tells her that he wasn’t being honest when he told her he only wanted to be an uncle, and that he really wants to be a dad. Heart eyes. Tayshia declares that Zac’s mom is “the cutest little button,” which is kind of a weird thing to say about your potential future mother-in-law.

 

Ivan

For Ivan’s hometown, his mom and dad are here, but the date starts out with him and Tayshia watching an adorable video from his niece Kehlani (you know, the one who was born when his brother was in prison and for whom Ivan stepped in as a father figure?). It’s a cute cooking lesson, and Kehlani instructs Ivan and Tayshia on how to make lumpia, a classic Filipino dish. Tayshia is so happy cooking with Ivan, saying that it’s a realistic home-life scenario.

I’m a Tayshia-Ivan shipper, so this melted my heart a little. Apparently, Tayshia is the second girl Ivan has ever brought home (well, introduced to his parents, Ivan obviously wasn’t raised at La Quinta). His mom is skeptical—ie. sane and logical—of the whole finding-love-on-reality-television thing, but she isn’t hostile. His dad tells Tayshia that he also got married and divorced at a young age, which is a nice bonding moment. Next, Ivan’s brother Gabe, Kehlani’s father, surprises them, and everyone sobs (by “everyone” I mean “me.” Oops). Tayshia seems to want her goodnight kiss with Ivan to go on forever, and honestly, who can blame her?

 

Ben

Last up is Ben. His sister Madalyn, who helped him through his eating disorder, and his family friend Antonia, who’s a Top Chef (OMG) are here for his hometown (his dad is a doctor, so his parents aren’t here for COVID-related reasons, or maybe because they think this show is ridiculous). Ben is originally from Indiana, but no one wants to watch a pie-eating contest, so his hometown mimics his current home, Venice Beach. In true L.A. fashion, they rollerblade over to a juice bar, where Tayshia takes a turmeric wellness shot that almost kills her. They do some typical boardwalk activities like trying on hats at a souvenir kiosk and getting their caricatures drawn, before going to the “beach,” a.k.a. the La Quinta pool. Classy.

 

Rose ceremony

Honestly, I’ve got to hand it to Tayshia. All four of her finalists seem like great, genuine and emotionally available (?!?!?!) guys. Ben and Chris Harrison have matching ties, and Brendan is wearing a mock neck as per usual. Heartbreakingly, Tayshia sends Ben home (I guess I know who I’m DMing tonight). Apparently, he didn’t break down his walls enough for Tayshia. While this would be a valid reason in real-world dating, I don’t view his lack of saying “I’m in love with you” as a red flag, considering that they’ve known each other for six weeks. SPOILER ALERT: I have good news for my fellow Ben fans, because according to some eagle-eyed members of Bachelor Nation on the internet, Ben says “I’ve never felt this feeling, but I’m in love with you“ in the promo for next week’s episodes, which he definitely hasn’t said yet. Plus, he’s wearing a different colored shirt from tonight’s episode. Skip to the 1:06 timestamp to watch for yourself. *Squeeee*

 

Time to gear up for another two-episode week starting Monday, Bachelor fans. First, we’ll see what goes down in the Fantasy Suites, then tune in for the finale on Tuesday to potentially see a Neil Lane rock glittering on Tayshia’s finger. Not sure how we’re already almost at the season finale, but that’s 2020 for you. Let’s just hope no one gets blindsided. 

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