The Bachelorette came back from its NBA Finals-induced week off and picked up right where it left off, with Chad prowling through the woods of Pennsylvania while the other guys celebrated his elimination. He showed up, had an anticlimactic confrontation with the guys (hopefully he didn't ask about his protein powder), and left. Finally. Good riddance. After that there was a rose ceremony where James F. and Daniel were sent packing.
Then it was off to Uruguay, where Jordan and Robby had one-on-one dates. Derek got the group date rose after the gang went sandsurfing. He had some conflict with the other guys, but it was too boring to even qualify as an awkward moment. At the second rose ceremony of the episode, Grant, Evan and Vinny were eliminated.
As distasteful as I found Chad, his presence on the show will be missed. Now that he's gone, The Bachelorette is going to be a dull march toward Jordan's inevitable victory. Chad at least brought an element of unpredictability. Now it's just going to contort itself to hit the beats it needs to hit to keep any semblance of drama alive. The only thing to left to argue about will be gets chosen to be the next Bachelor (I say Luke). There was some tension as the guys realized that now that Chad's gone, they no longer have a common enemy and all that's left is the competition. The competition that Jordan's going to win. His victory is so certain that JoJo wants to impress him. It's ridiculous.
Let's get to the awkward moments.
8. Daniel's job is changed from "male model" to "Canadian"
When the contestants were announced before the premiere, Daniel's profession was listed as "male model." However, we know The Bachelor and The Bachelorette will identify people not necessarily by job but by whatever best describes them. So in this episode, Daniel's chyron changed from "male model" to "Canadian." And that's more fitting. His accent is so thick and his personality is so silly that "Canadian" feels more accurate, even though no one else's body is on his level.
7. James F.'s cringeworthy poem that got him eliminated
James F. (the F stands for "Forgettable") read JoJo an embarrassingly bad poem he wrote. JoJo was just like "wow." Then Alex interrupted them, saving JoJo from having to pretend like James' poem wasn't terrible. It was sad, because sharing personal, creative work with your crush runs the risk of painfully crashing and burning, which is what happened to James in a very brutal way. He opened his heart and read his poem, and an hour later he was on a plane back to Nashville. Damn.
6. Uruguay. Uruguay. Uruguay. Uruguay.
The product placements are always awkward, but it seemed like the Uruguay tourism board was paying by the mention. They must have said "Uruguay" 50 times. Uruguay does look beautiful, though.
5. All Chads get thrown under the bus
Between Chad "not Ochocinco" Johnson and her ex-boyfriend Chad Rookstool, who cast a shadow over this episode via gossip magazine article, JoJo has a terrible track record with Chads. "I am so done with Chads," she said. "I apologize to all the Chads out there who are good men, I just haven't met one." Are there any good Chads, though? Chad is the go-to douchebag name. The name Chad needs an image rehabilitation.
4. Robby and JoJo's "spontaneous" cliff-jump
During Robby and JoJo's one-on-one, they went cliff-jumping. JoJo gushed that Robby was "spontaneous," but they were both wearing bathing suits under their clothes, which indicates that this was not at all spontaneous. Which is fine. Nothing wrong with a planned jump. But why put the line about spontaneity in there if it isn't important and makes the show look dishonest? This season has been all about giving men dates that play to their strengths (Jordan plays football, Grant fights fire) and Robby is a swimmer. Of course they go swimming. Why even bother to act like it wasn't planned?
3. Alex makes a full heel turn
Chad's gone, but Alez still needs to be in conflict with somebody. He can't function without confrontation, because he's toxic. So this week he set his sights on Derek, who apparently isn't masculine enough for him because he may have asked JoJo for reassurance. Alex called Derek an "insecure little bitch." It was way over the top. In pro wrestling, when a good guy turns into a bad guy, he's said to have made a "heel turn." Alex started as a good guy, but now that Chad's gone, he's The Bachelorette's heel.
2. Chad's anticlimactic exit
You would think with all the teasing promos of something really bad happening and all of Chad's threats of violence that something would have actually happened when he went back to the house to confront the guys, but all that happened was he squeezed Jordan's hand too hard and got in a sick burn at Evan's expense when Evan brought up his ripped shirt again ("Are you that broke? I thought you owned d--- companies"). For all that huffing and puffing, you wanted to see a house get blown down. But instead he just whistled his way off into the night.
1. The planted magazine
While the guys were getting haircuts in Uruguay (sidebar: now that Vinny's gone, who will cut the guys' hair? Does the production hire a hair & makeup professional once there's an affordable number of contestants remaining?), they "found" a magazine that Vinny "kept" in his "barbershop" that had an article about JoJo getting back together with her ex-boyfriend Chad Rookstool after she wrapped filming on The Bachelor and dumping him when she got The Bachelorette. This became a controversy as the guys thought maybe JoJo wasn't here for the right reasons and she had to tearfully explain herself. The awkward part here is that The Bachelorette's producers control the access the participants have to the outside world. They didn't even bother to hide the fact that they planted the magazines. They forced JoJo to reckon with embarrassing dirty laundry she shouldn't have had to deal with on camera. It was needlessly, pointlessly cruel to the star of the show. If I were JoJo, I would be furious. The producers showed their hand while stirring up trouble that wasn't there. It was too UnReal.
I don't feel good about this episode, you guys. Hopefully next week feels more organic and lively.