Hello Sports Bachelor Nation. Guess what? Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. Now, a lot of people have very strong feelings about Valentine’s Day, and I don’t mean to disrespect your love or your hate for it, but I honestly couldn’t care less about Feb. 14. In my experience, you’re either in a relationship and stop to buy some Russel Stover chocolates on your way home because you forgot to do something actually thoughtful, or you’re not in a relationship, and you stop to buy some Russel Stover for yourself a day later, when they’ve gone on sale. Big whoop.
However, it does seem appropriate that we usher in this day of love by spending the evening before watching women get their hearts ripped out on national TV. Let’s do the damn thing!
NICK WONDERS IF HE CAN DO THIS, AND CHRIS HARRISON IS LIKE, DO YOU THINK YOU CAN DO THIS?
We spend an inordinate amount of time in the beginning of this episode wondering if Nick Viall can do this, because he sent three women home and had a nervous breakdown at the end of the last episode. The women wonder if Nick can do this. Nick wonders if Nick can do this. Chris “Crest White Strips” Harrison — who shows up on the beach in St. Thomas wearing linen, with his shirt sleeves AND pant legs rolled up, like some psychologist on vacation — wonders if Nick can do this.
We viewers are probably the only ones who don’t wonder if Nick can do this, because of course Nick can do this, because that’s why Nick’s on the show in the first place: To do this. We all know (we do all know this, right? C’mon guys, tell me you know this) that there’s no way he’s tossing away half a season of ratings because his heart hurts.
My main takeaway here is that Sad Nick sitting on an overturned boat on a beach is a lot like Sad Ben Affleck. They both know what they’ve done, they both know they’re the ones who got themselves into this whole mess, and they both have to sit there in front of a large audience and simply take it.
STREAKING TO BIMINI, BRING YOUR GREEN HAT BIKINI
But then Nick snaps out of it, as we knew he would, and the gang heads off to an island called Bimini, which is not only an island, but also the thing that goes on top of a motor boat to provide shade to those aboard.
Fun fact! Anyway — hometown dates are next week, so whoever is left at the end of this episode gets to bring Nick home to meet her family.
The stakes, they are high.
Which is why, when Vanessa gets the one-on-one date, Corinne goes, “you lucky bitch.” I think at this point most of the women kind of like Corinne, so, while they might’ve blown a collective gasket earlier in the season, now they’re just like Miley Cyrus’ friend Leslie in that song where Leslie’s like, “Oh, she’s just being Miley.” The gang rolls their eyes and moves on.
I don’t blame Corinne, however, because she hasn’t had a one-on-one date yet, and here’s Vanessa, going on her second. Corinne gets personal and makes fun of Vanessa for being a saint, given that she’s a special needs teacher. I’m kind of here for this. Not in terms of making fun of Vanessa for doing a very noble profession, but for Corinne’s suggestion that maybe Vanessa is using her job as a bit of a high-horse upon which to perch. Especially since, in an earlier episode, Vanessa gave Nick a scrapbook that she said her students made her that was all about how wonderful she is. A scrapbook that — and I’m just playing devil’s advocate, here — Vanessa might’ve actually made herself.
We haven’t seen much of this in action on the show, but I wouldn’t be surprised if behind the scenes, when the women are just chilling with each other, Vanessa is low-key super annoying about how she’s a Good Person. Good People always love to tell you they’re Good People.
And Good People, in my experience, are the most insufferable kind of People.
VANESSA AND NICK MAKE OUT UNDER WATER
My key takeaway so far, as Nick and Vanessa lie on a yacht, is that I would love to go on a tropical vacation. Nick appears to be wearing a Livestrong bracelet, which is the funniest thing I’ve seen since the stupid romper Danielle L. wore right before she got the boot last episode.
Check this out:
It’s 2017, dude! What you doin’! (Watch there be, like, some touching reason he still wears it, so soon I’ll sound like a total asshole, even more than I already do.)
Vanessa and Nick make out underwater while wearing scuba goggles, and it is decidedly unsexy. I have never made out with anyone wearing goggles, nor do I have any desire to. In fact, I’m surprised the goggles aren’t bumping into each other and preventing these people’s mouths from meeting. But somehow the physics of this work, and no one drowns, which is nice, because making out while treading water below the surface is actually the leading cause of drowning on The Bachelor. And that’s a fact, Kellyanne Conway style.
WHY IS THIS SPOILER HAPPENING RIGHT NOW?
I am losing my mind, because stupid Mashable (I’m sure the people who work there aren’t actually stupid, etc., disclaimer, disclaimer) tweeted that Rachel is the next Bachelorette.
Are you fucking kidding me? You’re gonna drop this when she’s STILL ON THE SHOW? Look, I’m here for this: Having a black Bachelorette is crucial, because there have been 75,000 seasons of this show, and every moron looking for love has been white as a cone of vanilla ice cream in a snow storm.
I just wish they’d been able to keep the cat in the bag until Rachel gets kicked off. I’ve avoided spoilers like the plague, which is hard to do when your job is reading and making internet all day, and I’m very upset that one crossed my timeline. In fact, I am livid. I feel like I just walked in on a cheating boyfriend, the way Raven did a few months before coming on this show. And now I, like Raven did to her boyfriend, would like to beat Mashable over the head with a stiletto.
(Yes, I know, other outlets reported this. It’s not just Mashable. But it was their tweet I saw, so they are bearing my full wrath. Sometimes life isn’t fair.)
Oh, by the way: I called this after Week 1.
VANESSA IS LIKE, I LOVE YOU, AND NICK IS LIKE, EH
Vanessa is beautiful, and I like her hoop earrings, but she makes garbage sartorial decisions. The dress she wears to dinner looks like she wrapped one of those baby-carriers around her body too many times and called it a day. She tells Nick she’s falling in love with him, and Nick is like:
“I’m looking for the type of love I’ve never had before. I do believe there is a greater love for me than what I’ve had. I really, really like you. A lot. But it is incredibly important for me, if I’m lucky enough to feel love or say ‘I love you’ in this world, that I only say it to one person. I’ve never dated multiple women before — “
*Record scratch. Freeze frame. “Yup, that’s me. You’re probably wondering how I got myself into this situation.”*
“ — and so I’m taking it slow. And I’m glad I am, because if I’m lucky enough to say I love you, I want it to feel like in a way I’m saying it for the first time.”
Well, that certainly explains Nick’s mentality and why he gets super butthurt when the women he’s slept with either don’t call him back or don’t love him. This dude’s mentality is monogamous to a fault.
Vanessa is not thrilled. Vanessa, I’m realizing, is also boring. I don’t remember what she says after Nick dumps that on her because it’s not very interesting.
SWIMMING WITH SHARKS
Nick, Corinne, Raven, and Kristina go on a group date. They swim with sharks. My dad must’ve showed my mom how to turn on the television (which is a thing neither she nor I can ever figure out how to do on our own at my parents’ house, because they have too many TV remotes which all have too many buttons) because she starts texting me about the show.
I’m going to let her take the reins on the recap for a moment:
CORINNE IS WORRIED
Nick seems more into Kristina than he does into Raven or Corinne during the part of the date where they’re swimming with sharks. At night, Corinne asks Nick why she hasn’t had a one-on-one yet, and he’s like, “yadda yadda yadda,” and she’s like “cool, I feel better.”
Then she gets really nervous and eats a lot of cheese and I deeply identify with someone on this show for the first time in my life.
Honestly — and this might sound strange — I think Corinne and Nick have more chemistry than Nick has with most of the other women. She’s the only one who makes him seem like he has some semblance of a personality. Like, he’ll be funny with her occasionally, which is impressive for a guy whose chemical makeup is 90 percent Pepperidge Farm oatmeal bread.
Corinne also has great clothes.
NICK SENDS DANIELLE M. HOME, RUINING MY PREDICTIONS FOR THE ENTIRE SEASON
So Nick and Danielle go on a painfully awkward date where they ride bikes around and then go to dinner. “Your face is pretty great,” Nick says, and I contemplate switching the channel over to the Westminster Dog Show so I don’t have to watch this. But it’s a good thing I don’t, because Danielle M. tells Nick she loves him, and then Nick sends her home.
I’m like — exsqueeze me, dude? Danielle M. was the star of a country music video, what more do you want?
I’m upset because I was pretty sure Danielle M. at least made it to the final two, and now I feel like my whole life is a lie. Danielle M.’s ex also died, and now she’s heartbroken, and I just ache for her. I really do. I know this show is largely not made up of real emotions, but at some point, what emotions there are do become real, if only because of Stockholm Syndrome from being cooped up in a house with no cell phones. It’s very sad to watch people be sad. Even I, in my blackened, cynical, Bachelor-hating, Bachelor-recapping heart, don’t love to see this.
OTHER STUFF HAPPENS
Quickly, because I’m running out of steam here, and we need to get to a greater point before this ends: Nick and Rachel go on a date and talk about how Nick is white and Rachel is black, which is, I think, the most race has ever come up in a season before, which is good.
But at this point, thanks to goddamn Mashable, we’re all just waiting for this stupid season to end so we can watch Rachel be the Bachelorette. So who cares whether Nick holds onto her for another episode or not.
Then, Corinne tries to have sex with Nick by showing up at his hotel room unannounced. She drops her line about her heart being gold but her vagine being platinum, which is great news, because now maybe the producers will stop teasing that clip. Nick doesn’t have sex with Corinne and sends her on her way. Corinne winces down the hotel hallway in Christian Louboutin stilettos, which cost at least $800.
Then, Nick sends sweet, sweet Kristina home. Kristina, the lovely Russian woman with the inspiring adoption story. I knew this would happen, but it still hurts.
Our hometown dates will be: Raven, Rachel, Corinne, and Vanessa.
HERE’S THE DEAL
Corinne is going to win this whole fucking show, because it's 2017. We can't have nice things. Donald Trump won the election and the Falcons couldn’t hold on to a 25-point lead in the Super Bowl. Why should The Bachelor be any different?
I used to think it was ridiculous to even begin to think Corinne had a shot, but I’ve changed my tune. We live in dark times. We’re through the looking glass. So, mark my words: Corinne WILL win.
BUT IF YOU KNOW, DON'T TELL ME, BECAUSE I HAVE TO AVOID SPOILERS OR THESE RECAPS WILL TURN INTO EVEN HOTTER PILES OF TRASH THAN THEY ALREADY ARE!
Look, I love Corinne. She’s the most interesting part of this show. But I want to live in a world where Nick picks Vanessa, and they ride off into the sunset in a blaze of boring glory the way The Bachelor is supposed to end. I need, in these bizarre times, some shred of normalcy. And in a normal world, the villain of The Bachelor doesn’t win The Bachelor.
Which is why I’m pretty sure Corinne will be Mrs. Nick Viall when this whole stupid thing is said and done.