Tonight’s second “special” episode purports to entertain us by further showcasing the Ted Bundy-inspired sociopath Chad and his threats to dismember the rest of the cast. I had more fun at my last mammogram. Et tu, The Bachelorette? You were supposed to be about transparently staged love matches and romantic marriage proposals that end in break-ups a month after fans lose interest. We don’t want to see an Eli Roth movie with boutonnières.
A promo for this episode suggests that a couple of the contestants experience injuries that bleed for real, although probably less realistically than in an Eli Roth movie. IBT reports breathlessly that “the extent of those injuries, or how they sustained them, is currently unknown,” but most likely someone slipped off the diving board while gawking at JoJo’s side boob during the pool party.
In fact, it’s not Chad, but JoJo who will be the one doing the slashing. She will ruthlessly cut three of the 17 guys at the Rose Ceremony. The rest of the men will receive scripts for Xanax, except for Wells. He will be lobotomized after the trauma of sharing his room with Chad, but not so much because of the potential for violence as that Chad leaves his dirty socks on the floor.
Wheel of Fortune fades to black (an idiot guessed “reusable mug” when it was obviously “bag”) and several commercials lacking memorable jingles fill the remaining moments before the seminal event when The Bachelorette 2016 Week 3 Part 2 begins. We first review what happened previously, which is mostly Chad grunting as he pumps iron, his pecs so pronounced they could fit into a bra only slightly smaller than mine, and the other guys describing him as a meltdown, a disaster, and other events that involve evacuation to safe ground.
Chris has dispatched Chad back to the house to smooth things over, likely with an armored tank. “Sup?” he begins promisingly. He then suggests they’ve settled things already, and there’s nothing more to discuss. Evan is astonished. “You ripped my shirt! You grabbed my neck!” he cries, demonstrating the procedure on himself. No one else is wearing a shirt, maybe to avoid Chad ripping it. The result resembles a Soho gallery full of giant arm tattoos.
As the others complain about his dismissal of their concerns, Chad gives up and goes outside to play with some pool noodles. Meanwhile, JoJo is excited about the pool party. She expects it to make everyone relaxed, or least in need of a deep-conditioning treatment. All that bare flesh just makes me nervous about melanoma. Everyone jumps into the water, plays chicken, and climbs onto inflatable animals. The scene is as compelling The Brady Bunch episode in Hawaii.
Next elderly pop culture reference: Rambo: First Blood. It’s Evan dripping blood. He must have struck his nose while pointing it snootily into the air.
JoJo goes off with Jordan. She tells him he makes her nervous. She thinks he’s smooth and great, like high-quality peanut butter. Choosy bachelorettes choose Jordan! Meanwhile, he’s running his hands all over the parts of her they can show on TV. JoJo next sits with…who is that? Robby? Vinny? Chase? They start making out immediately, so it doesn’t matter anyway.
Right now, JoJo doesn’t see the negative side of Chad, probably because she can’t take her eyes off his Michelangelo abs. Chad feels they are on the opposite end of the spectrum. He can’t even guess if she wants ice cream or steak, for God’s sake. This will never work, at least if they ever want to go to dinner.
Next Alex bitches about Chad to JoJo, then another guy (Derek?) blabs to her about the security guard. Chad eavesdrops, so surprise, he’s angry again. Maybe it’s not again, just more. He reacts by tearing apart an innocent branch and kicking a flamingo floaty. What a vile bastard.
Then, in a scene reminiscent of Elliott Stabler with a pedophile in an interrogation room, he questions Derek, who appears visibly threatened despite being a pretty well-muscled guy himself. “Dude, you flip on people,” he points out to Chad, which is funny because he’s in real estate. The scene reminds me of bull sessions in Bunk 9 at Camp Winnatchawakee, only without the giant tats and oiled chests.
Now for the Rose Ceremony, for which JoJo has chosen to wear a sequin-encrusted midriff top and matching long skirt that looks like it came from the Solid Gold wardrobe room. She thanks the guys generically for being there or being great or being open or vulnerable. The first rose goes to Grant, and the second to Derek. She likes a guy who blabs. The next rose goes to Jordan, who sincerely believes Chad will not receive one. Luke gets the next rose, followed by Robby, who is very metrosexual. His skin glows more than JoJo’s. Wells comes after that, then James F. and Vinny. Daniel comes up next. Alex waits, burning like a stubby candle with resentment for Chad. But he gets the next rose.
One remains now. It’s got Chad written all over it, in pesticide. He feels that despite the obstacle of the steak/ice cream dilemma, he and JoJo do have a connection. And indeed, he gets the rose. Evan is crestfallen that he must take out more life insurance.
Christian, Ali, and Nick are sent home. They can’t believe Chad is still there and they are not, even though they each got about three minutes of screen time last week. JoJo now wants to leave the drama behind, so they’re all packing to go somewhere else. I understand that’s why Holocaust survivors moved away from Germany. She feels leaving LA will provide a fresh start, despite the fact that the drama is zipping up his wheelie suitcase right alongside the rest of them. Also the producers’ lease on the mansion was up.
JoJo arrives by a U.S. Mail plane at a remote hotel amid much nature that Chad couldn’t possibly strip clean of its greenery during his stay. I missed what part of the country this is, but apparently it’s where the mail gets delivered in between reality show contestants. The one-on-one date card arrives and goes to Luke. He’s a war vet, so I hope they don’t go somewhere he might experience shell shock.
Their date is going dog sledding without the snow. Even the dogs think this show is idiotic. They arrive to find a wood-fired hot tub for which Luke must chop the wood to heat it. This will secure his status as a man, says JoJo. Jeez, lady, get a gas fireplace. Then Luke takes off his shirt and secures his status as an aspiring underwear model.
The hot tub is too hot. Luke picks JoJo up and dips her gently into the water, much like we dip the carpas into salt water during the Passover seder, although that has a much more interesting backstory. JoJo wonders if Luke is too good to be true, apparently because he’s ripped and likes nature. They discuss the cities he enjoys, just as Tristan and Isolde did before they fell in love. JoJo reveals that she realizes that there’s so much more to Luke than his GQ looks, such as a familiarity with Nashville’s shopping options.
Back at the hotel, Chad hot-tubs alone while plotting his revenge with a malevolent grin on his face. He would make a good Bond villain: “No, Evan, I expect you to die.”
The other guys receive the next date card. Derek, James T., Daniel, Chase, Wells, James F., Evan, Grant, Jordan, and Robby are going. That will leave Alex and Chad alone with Luke. The sexual tension will be incredible.
That night, JoJo and Luke go to dinner. “He’s rugged and sexy and that mysterious thing, there’s something sexy about that,” JoJo reports, similar to how I described both Starsky and Hutch when I was 14. She’s also drawn to his confidence. How did he get that way, aside from four hours a day at the gym and a half-cup of Apollo Secrets on his hair? He describes his experience in Afghanistan, where soldiers’ lives were in his hands. Tinkly piano music underscores the gravity of the moment as Luke explains how it affected him when his friend was killed in action.
JoJo tries to look somber, which is also how she looks when she misplaces her favorite bottle of China Glaze. This tragic event in his life compelled Luke to get in touch with his emotions, so now he cherishes moments like this one with JoJo, even when there is no soundtrack to set the mood. He definitely gets the rose. After tonight, JoJo feels their relationship is so much more than washboard abs and knowing how many layers to wear when running in cold weather. It’s about a guy whose friend’s premature violent death motivated him to truly value her.
They next enter a huge theater and mount the stage as the crowd cheers wildly and a band called Dan + Shay starts singing. The couple sway rigidly to the cross-promoted music. JoJo says all she can focus on is Luke, and possibly the smoke machine making it hard to breathe. They kiss tenderly as the crowd applauds, gapes, and live-streams it against the producers’ wishes. This is more awkward than that time in the supermarket when I knocked over a whole display of Little Debbies while grabbing for the last box of Nutty Bars.
Group date time! The men head for a football stadium, where Ben Roethsliswhatever is waiting. He’s brought a couple of other famous players of whom I know nothing with him. The guys will go through training, complete with tire jumping and donning large inflatable balls so they can slam into each other safely. Ben seems fascinated by the assortment of bachelors as JoJo identifies them. He’s probably laughing all the way to the bank after filming.
Jordan pulls out all the stops on the field to prove he is worthy of JoJo, as you do. Then more of the promo blood is explained: James T. gets whacked in the face during the proceedings, right near his eye. Stitches are advised, but he rejects them to stay with JoJo, as you do. He is willing to be scarred for life for six weeks of TV exposure. Nobody on Chopped ever wants to get stitches when they cut themselves, either, but they’re used to being abused in the restaurant business.
Back at the mansion, Alex and Chad glare at each other as they rehash the “I’m just defending myself from your words with a fist to the face” debate. Oh, wait, Luke is there, too. Who can keep track. Anyway, this topic is more redundant than durian in a Chopped mystery ingredient basket.
The group daters next prepare for a game in the locker room, where ironically no transgender men are allowed among these girlyboys. It’s white shirts vs. blue, but since I know nothing from football, I can’t follow the action. Evan declares he’s in “beast mode,” which is like Snuffalupagus claiming to be in Sasquatch mode. He gets another nosebleed, and the white team loses. They retire to the locker room in desolation as losing not only the game, but the opportunity for more time with JoJo. That’s when they were really hoping to score. The rest of the guys go to have cocktails with her after what she calls “the most fun day of my life.” Good to know the eventual mate won’t have to spend a lot of money on trips to Disneyland and mini-golf.
Robby is determined to moving forward in his relationship with JoJo, which currently consists of three conversations lasting five minutes and a brief grope. “I feel like we’re making progress without even having time together,” JoJo marvels. They now know each other as well as anyone on Snapchat, so they proceed to make out on a pool table. “He’s a man,” she reports. “He makes me feel sexy.” Sitting on some cue balls has the same effect on me.
Next JoJo tells Jordan he’s “so hard to read.” I thought they resolved his failure to open up the last two times? Jordan acknowledges that he must force himself to share his feelings or he will lose her. He tells her he’s falling for her, which is money in the bank for JoJo. Say no more and make out with me, you charming roue.
Now JoJo is ready to present the rose, which goes to Jordan. Poor Robby should’ve chosen the fountain to make out in front of.
The next date card, the rare yet dreaded two-on-one, goes to Chad and Alex. They must battle for the rose in order to remain on the show. As the other men discuss the weather or ibuprofen vs. aspirin, once again Chad is suddenly compelled to leap from his seat and demand to know who has a problem with him, aside from every anger management teacher in the country. Insults and accusations are exchanged. Violence is threatened. This scenario also appeared on pages 3, 17, 22, and 41 of the script. Ultimately, Chad stalks away, as on pages 12, 28, and 34 of the script.
Before leaving for their date, Alex and Chad silently bring their packed bags to wait ominously by the suite door. Then Chad takes a moment to threaten post-show violence against Jordan. Meanwhile, Alex dons flag socks. The remaining guys crowd together on the couch looking anxious as Chad watches them, evil grin intact, until it’s time to go. Alex feels this date will be the battle between good and evil. I thought that already happened with Andi and Josh.
JoJo is uneasy herself. Although drama follows him everywhere, she reasons, Chad has chemistry with her. Comparatively, Alex is a nice guy whom she likes, so there’s no point in pursuing a relationship there. The three meet to go on a hike during which there are opportunities for Chad to fling Alex off a cliff.
Alex won’t let Chad manipulate JoJo. The tension is as palpable as a benign breast lump as the three sit on a blanket atop a rock in the forest. JoJo invites Alex to talk alone, which Chad views as a positive since in his business, no one buys the first house they see. In my business, no one reads another TV recap after they’re disappointed by mine.
Alex drives the convo to become nothing but an indictment of his enemy. However, JoJo is concerned about Chad. She’s shocked that he has been violent and aggressive with the guys, despite his being dismissive and snide with her. Thus we introduce Scripted Conflict #421, in which one character is discovered to be exhibiting the different behavior at the house than s/he does with the Bachelor/ette. JoJo provides this revelation to Chad privately, as Alex trembles alone on his blanket, much like my dog does when I vacuum. Chad insists he’s not an aggressive guy, which is like the Kardashians insisting they’re not an indictment of contemporary culture. JoJo does not accept what he says, so she needs time to think about whether his massive upper body strength is enough to keep him around.
She sits on a log to consider Chad’s inability to talk through his undiagnosed sociopathy in a single filmed conversation in a wooded area. She has “an overwhelming feeling of emotion,” which is a fancy-sounding way of saying she’s got hellish PMS. Maybe it’s because Chad’s mom died recently that he wants to tear the limbs off men whose last names he has not yet memorized.
Meanwhile, Chad himself is again enraged that Alex acknowledged documented facts about him. He returns to join Alex. “I’m not mad, I’m just disappointed,” he says through clenched teeth, before casually expressing regret that he can’t hurt Alex without getting in trouble. The two use bleeped language to complain about each other for a few moments until JoJo rejoins them.
Heaving a deep sigh, she basically tells Alex he’s the messenger she wants to kill. Then she asks Chad if he has indeed threatened anyone. Can’t she just watch the footage? He prevaricates until Alex reminds him of the scene they filmed this morning, when the director advised him to enter from the left before telling Jordan he would stalk him to his home and attack him with his meaty fists.
JoJo picks up the rose resolutely. After condemning Chad for his disappointing behavior, which practically ruined the chemistry between them, she offers the flower to Alex and bids Chad good day, sir. Wandering through the forest as Alex and JoJo celebrate, the rejected Cro-Magnon Man suggests she is a liar or a phony or something even worse, since it’s bleeped, like “rejected mortgage application.”
When he returns to the hotel to collect his suitcase, the other guys cheer and pop champagne. Way to make him find out all your addresses and stab you repeatedly in your sleep.
But it’s not over yet. As Alex and JoJo relax that evening, and the other guys continue reveling in the departure of their nemesis, we see Chad’s bulky, menacing form approaching in the night and looking through a door. Is it where Alex and JoJo are, or back at the hotel? Or perhaps some set back in L.A.? Who will he threaten next–or is it something worse, like revealing he’s got a contract to appear on Million Dollar Listing?
We won’t find out for two weeks, so relax and enjoy some champagne.