The Bachelor recap: A Napping Suspicion
Nick picks his final two before The Women Tell All brings the focus back to Corinne and Taylor
I know what you all are wondering: Did Nick get the job done? Is he better in bed than that poor guy who can never again show his face in Hoxie, Arkansas? Oh wait, you weren’t wondering that but instead were hoping to never have to listen to Raven talk about orgasms again? Well, then we’ve got a treat for you! Because although The Bachelor has never been known for its subtlety, they take this opening to another level. After Raven tells us all, “Nick is really good at what he does, so I’m pretty satisfied today,” I choke back some vomit while Raven pulls a 500 Days of Summer — high-fiving strangers, creating snow angels, and basically telling the world that she had a very good night. Maybe even multiple nights. You’re welcome for that.
Today, it’s Rachel’s turn to have a night of her own to spend some time with Nick in Finland, which she claims feels like Narnia, and all I want to know is, Does that make Nick, like, Aslan, or is he more of a Mr. Tumnus?
Together, the two of them are going cross-country skiing, which Rachel has definitely never done before because she’s excited to give it a try. Spoiler: It’s actually pretty difficult, so it’s a good thing their trip ends with some adorable reindeer.
Sitting down, Rachel tells Nick that she’s scared, and guess what? He’s scared too. To help her open up, he tells her that they can be scared together. (Is it just me, or did they just write their wedding vows? Scared together, till death do us part.)
Finally feeling safe enough to really open up, Rachel tells Nick that he’s “rare and refreshing,” which she follows with, “That’s not normal.” Well, that’s one way to make someone feel special, I suppose? Nick, taking things one step further, declares, “I might be white but I’m still a minority.” No comment.
With that, they hop in a sleigh pulled by a reindeer and hopefully led by a human being, though one is nowhere to be seen. One uncomfortable St. Nick joke later, and we’ve made it to the evening portion of their date, where Nick toasts “to those moments when you’re willing to be vulnerable.” Wow, real subtle there, buddy. In case you didn’t pick up on it, Rachel, you need to tell him you love him or you’re done for.
Nick continues with the subtlety when he tells Rachel he can’t do anything unless he knows where he stands. Rachel admits that’s it’s hard for her to verbalize things, to which Nick responds, “Like what?” SHE JUST SAID IT’S DIFFICULT FOR HER TO VERBALIZE IT.
At this point, Rachel only has one option, so when Nick tries one final time by asking her, “If you were to check your ego at the door, what would your heart say?” — what is this, a therapy session? — she responds with, “That I’m falling in love with you.” Then she adorably hides in her sweater and Nick tells her that he’s falling, too. (Yes, that is allowed, because he said “falling,” meaning he hasn’t fallen completely at this point.)
Rachel then accepts the fantasy suite card, and the couple is so happy about that love revelation that they forget to shut the door. She then, regrettably, says, “I know we’re going to go so much deeper than we’ve gone before.”
Thankfully, her morning after has nothing to do with how the night went and everything to do with her penguin onesie. After Nick makes her breakfast, she ponders the possibility of meeting his family. “Hopefully we can seal the deal,” she says. Sounds to me like she didn’t have the same type of night Raven did, if you catch my drift.
Finally, we get to our final overnight date with Vanessa, who shows up in what must be a show-assigned beanie, because all three women have the same hat in different colors. After proving that running through snow is not easy, she and Nick head to their date: Once again, Nick decides to test Vanessa’s physical abilities, and this time it involves the two of them running back and forth between an ice bath and a sauna. Because nothing says romance like the potential of stopping your heart.
Nick’s plan is for the couple to stay in the ice bath for 10 seconds… which lasts all of three seconds before he ditches Vanessa. If you thought this date was going to be romantic, you were wrong, and also, why did you ever think that? By the time Vanessa gets to the sauna, she curls up in a ball and really doesn’t even care if Nick’s there.
She eventually uncurls and the two realize that body heat could be helpful in this situation, but after a second dip in the ice bath — they last 7 seconds — Nick declares “every man for himself” as he runs back to the sauna. Meanwhile, Vanessa has gone from wanting to chop Nick up and feed him to the reindeer to having the time of her life. This is way better than that time she vomited in zero gravity!
Their third and final time in the ice bath, Vanessa gets smart and distracts Nick with a kiss to get them to the 10-second mark before they leave it all behind for the hot tub.
And here’s where things get heated (and not because of the hot tub). Nick is quick to bring up that Vanessa’s family is very traditional and he is not. Apparently, one of Nick’s past relationships involved a family that was very present in his relationship, and over time, that complicated things. In other words, Nick wants to date you and not your family and doesn’t know how to say that.
But Vanessa’s not here to comfort him. She tells Nick that she has certain “core values” that she won’t compromise on, one of them being Sunday lunches. (Finally! A flaw! She might speak three languages and look like that, but she thinks lunch is a “value.”) Vanessa claims that spending three hours a week with her family is what keeps them close. Translation: She’s not leaving Montreal.
In this moment, Nick realizes something: “What if we’re too similar?” he asks. He’s realizing that there’s the chance that they’re both too stubborn to make a relationship work. Proof? Vanessa says she hopes that Nick remembers that a relationship is built on compromise… minutes after she’s the one who says she’s unwilling to compromise. So she’s either really stubborn or she also suffers from short-term memory loss.
Over dinner, they find a way to relate: Montreal and Chicago both have bad winters! Maybe this relationship can work! But then the conversation quickly comes back to the idea of compromise and meeting in the middle. When Vanessa asks about Nick moving to Canada, he admits that he’s never pictured living there. But at the same time, he claims he’d do anything for the woman he loves. Vanessa, back on top of her game, follows that with, “Then why is it something you can’t picture yourself doing?” Translation: “DO YOU LOVE ME?”
Nick uses the “proud to be an American” excuse, so Vanessa switches gears to a more light-hearted topic: “Hey Nick, what do you consider your flaws?” Well, they’re pretty much the same as Vanessa’s flaws — he’s impulsive, he’s hard-headed. And now we’re back to the whole “are we too similar” conversation. Round and around we go!
The one thing they can agree on: If Nick proposes, it’ll be because he can’t picture a future with anyone else. With that, Vanessa tells him that she’s been waiting to tell him that she loves him for a while now. And when she says that, Nick tears up.
Once in the fantasy suite, they put all their similarities aside because Vanessa knows in her heart that this is it for her. And one “do not disturb” sign later, Vanessa wakes up with “more of an appreciation for who Nick is.”
That brings us to the rose ceremony, where Nick sends Rachel home. Sitting down with her, he doesn’t know what to say, which is arguably his one job in this situation. Eventually, he tells her that she’s one of the most incredible women he’s ever met and that, selfishly, he hopes they can be friends one day. According to Nick, Rachel’s amazing and he thinks about that fact all the time.
But even though he seems to enjoy sitting around and thinking about how amazing Rachel is, in the moment, he clearly forgets, because he leads her out into the cold without a jacket. But Rachel won’t be cold for long; we already know she’s our next Bachelorette — that is, if she survives the icy drive out of Finland.
Now, to the Women Tell All, otherwise known as two hours of reliving the season, watching women fight, and wondering why we do this to ourselves. But at least this time we get to see Chris Harrison say “platinum vagine,” so I’d consider that a victory.
After Chris Harrison and Nick break into a few homes in L.A. to crash viewing parties — not sure if I’m more disturbed that Nick is twerking with college girls or that the Backstreet Boys are wasting their time watching this show — it’s time to reacquaint ourselves with the women from this season: Jaimi, Liz, Elizabeth, Josephine, Lacey, Christen, Alexis, Dominique, Astrid, Hailey, Taylor, Sarah, Jasmine G., Danielle L., Corinne, Whitney, Danielle M., and Kristina.
It takes the women about 60 seconds to start in on Corinne and that one time she slept through a rose ceremony. “Babies take naps,” Jasmine claims, thereby offending babies everywhere with the Corinne comparison. But wait, this actually isn’t about a nap. It’s about disrespect. And speaking of disrespect, some girl named Elizabeth is apparently “all about unleashing her inner Khaleesi” but calls Corinne a “slob kebab” before telling her outright, “You have issues.” (With insults like that, why haven’t we seen more of this surefire star??)
But, thankfully, Elizabeth doesn’t just have thoughts on Corinne. Elizabeth then turns her judgment on Taylor because Elizabeth was actually a psychology major, and she thinks that if Taylor were good at her job, she wouldn’t have put Corinne down the way she did. If only we had time for every psychology major in the world to chime in on this, but sadly, we have to move on.
By the time Josephine chimes in that Taylor had no right to bully anybody, Chris Harrison literally has to whistle to get the women to shut up.
Moving to the Hot Seat portion of the show, Harrison invites Liz on stage to share her story. According to her, when she first met Nick, she was still interested in someone else. It wasn’t until Nick was going on the show that she felt they were at the same place in their lives. And although she doesn’t regret the show, she hints at something ominous happening in her small hometown in Nebraska, which sends her on a rant about how nothing’s more important than staying true to yourself and how all women deserve to be fought for and deserve to be loved. According to Liz, it’s not about what you do, it’s about who you are, which makes me wonder: WHAT DID SHE DO?!
At this point, Hailey chimes in that you should “never feel ashamed of what you do with your sexuality,” and I’ve never been more curious what this is about. Are we just saying that Liz’s hometown shunned her for sleeping with Nick in the first place or did something juicier happen after the show? There’s no way this is about Liz building wells in orphanages… right?! Sadly, it doesn’t seem like we’re getting an answer on this matter. On to the next one…
Taylor joins Harrison on stage to share her definition of”emotional intelligence.” For Taylor, it was always about Corinne’s “ability to regulate her emotions and to empathize and pick up on the emotions of the other women in the house.” At this point, Taylor just wants Corinne to know that her words had a negative impact on her life. (Apparently, being called a “swamp monster” is the worst thing to ever happen to Taylor’s career. In related news, no one actually knows what a swamp monster is.)
But as far as the women in the house are concerned, Taylor walked around like she was better than everybody else. So, once she’s backed into a corner, she does the only thing she can do: She cries. So Corinne does the only thing SHE can do: She gets a glass of champagne.
Taylor gives a speech about how anyone in the “helping profession” should be encouraged. (Why, because they’re a good person? Maybe even better than others? I’m sorry; it’s just so easy to get sucked in.)
Taylor swears that Corinne has no idea of the impact her words have had — seriously, they’ve had a DIRECT IMPACT… even though she won’t say how.
But Corinne isn’t ready to give Taylor the apology she literally asks for (because that’s how all heartfelt apologies start). That then gets us into the argument of whether talking about someone’s behavior is the same thing as talking about someone’s character, but long story short, Taylor is still annoying, and now it’s Corinne’s turn in the Hot Seat.
Corinne is the first to admit that she came off a bit more promiscuous than she intended — apparently she thought having Nick lick whipped cream off her boob was pretty low key before she watched it back — but she’s ready to defend her nap: She actually had an anxiety attack that night. As for her comment about how Michael Jordan and Abraham Lincoln take naps, her point was simply that everybody naps. “Just like everybody poops. There’s a book about it. Read it!” she says, instructing adults to read a children’s book and furthering the theory that she needs a nanny because she’s still a child.
A million interruptions later, Harrison asks about the two-on-one date, to which Corinne responds: “I’m not perfect; I’m human. I’m not the brightest crayon in the box.” No, honey. You are not.
But for Corinne, the thing that bothered her most was Taylor saying she wouldn’t be her friend because Corinne wasn’t smart enough. Taylor denies saying those words, which somehow, brings us back around to freakin’ naps. Taylor naps too, guys! She even has a shirt saying she loves naps!
Taylor, once again crying, apologizes if she made anyone in the house feel like she was better than them. And once Harrison confronts the women, Corinne says she’s not one to hold grudges, and Taylor apologizes for saying she wouldn’t be friends with Corinne outside of this process. The takeaway? Corinne manipulated that entire situation so that she never had to apologize. Corinne wins.
Moving on, Harrison wants to talk about Racquel. Corinne reveals that Racquel moved from New Jersey to live with them when her mother was battling ovarian cancer. She only called her her “nanny” out of respect because she would never call her her “cleaning lady.”
And, out of respect, she had Racquel cook up a huge batch of cheese pasta so that everyone in the audience could have some. Everyone except Taylor, who’s way too good for pasta.
Now, it’s Kristina’s time in the Hot Seat, otherwise known as everyone’s chance to realize how stupid they’ve sounded thus far and how embarrassing it is that you have been bickering about naps when there are more important things in life. As Liz puts it, women should be building each other up, not tearing each other down!
Once Kristina’s reality check is over, Nick joins in on the fun mediocre time. Lacey, whom none of you will remember, is the first to embarrass herself by asking Nick, who sent her home, if he friend-zoned her, which seems like something she really should’ve figured out by now. And then there’s Alexis, who was perfectly happy in the friend zone.
From there, Corinne and Nick share a lovely moment of appreciation before Kristina has some questions: Switching from good Russian to bad Russian, Kristina fires away at Nick. She demands yes or no answers to three questions: Did we have chemistry? Did we have fun? Did we have intellectual conversation? THEN WHAT WAS MISSING?
This is my least favorite part of the process: when the women ask the Bachelor to explain a feeling, which simply isn’t possible. With both Kristina and then Danielle L., who, by the way, sounds just like the “Redrum” kid from The Shining when she cries, Nick is left to try to explain that other relationships were simply moving along at a faster pace.
After Dominique tries for her 15 minutes, it’s Christen who decides to play the role of Chris Harrison: She wants to know if Nick found that great love, a question they obviously won’t answer considering next week is the finale.
One set of bloopers later, and it’s Rachel’s turn to join Chris Harrison on stage. Gearing up for her time as the Bachelorette, Rachel is looking for a confident man with a great smile who’s ready to get married and start a family. As for the women, they loooove Rachel and are more than happy to take her leftovers.
As for being the first black Bachelor/Bachelorette, Rachel feels like the perfect word is “honored.” She doesn’t want her race to be the focus of her journey, but she’s happy to be the person who gets to do it.
After Nick comes out and says hello, Rachel gives us all a glimpse of the class that we’re in for: She thanks Nick for making her a believer in the process and helping her discover what she wants. So suffice it to say: Rachel’s season will, hopefully, be very different from what we just witnessed.
And thank god THAT is over. If you all need me, I’ll be fixing cheese pasta and donating money to the Women’s March.