Will You Accept this Recap?: "The Bachelorette" Season 16 Episode 3

Since it’s Halloween week at Her Campus at Geneseo, we have to acknowledge the unusual. This week’s episode of The Bachelorette was definitely a little spooky, from the men who are planning their disappearance to the devil possessing Yosef and Zach J.

 

Yosef Digs His Own Grave

Rebecca: I’m all for people being honest, but when he used the word “atrocity,” I thought things might go south. I understand that he was upset when Clare confronted them last week. Like he said, it is a “two-sided” relationship. I actually agree with everything he said about the dodgeball date. When he said the other guys were “appeasing” her, that’s when I saw things shifting. Don’t speak for others. Also, referencing her age isn’t a smart idea. He said, “I expected a lot more from the oldest Bachelorette.” Then he said he was ashamed of being associated with her and called her crazy. Holy crap that crossed a line. There were better ways he could have gone about speaking his mind, but the way he did it just undermined his point. I’m glad that she defended herself, and I can’t believe she brought back the iconic line about she’d never want Yosef to be the father of her children. Wow. If Yosef dug himself a hole throughout this conversation, there was no way he was getting out, especially when he repeated the same thing about Clare being a mother to his children. The fact he kept saying sh*t was awful. He took things way too far. It was extremely disrespectful, and I felt bad for Clare. I’m glad he showed himself early and left.

Jess: So here’s the thing about what Yosef said. Like Rebecca, I totally get the points he was making before going to talk to her. If Yoself felt uncomfortable and his expectations of who Clare is, or what The Bachelorette experience is, did not match up with the reality then go for it; voice those concerns and possibly go home if you’re not feeling it with her. If he had brought this to her in a mature, calm way, I could definitely give him points for being honest. 

Except, Yosef did exactly the opposite of that. 

You could tell how heated he was, calling everything an “atrocity,” and constantly referencing his daughter. I think his daughter is irrelevant to the point. If it was something he was uncomfortable with, just say you’re uncomfortable with it. 

The first part of the interaction was valid, I completely agree that while the guys are there for Clare, Clare is also there for them too and sets the tone as the lead. As soon as Clare cut into Yosef talking to say, “my mom is dying,” you could see the rage flash through Yosef’s eyes and could see that this was not going to end well. 

Then he goes on to speak on the dodgeball date, saying he was “appalled” by it which, again, I get, it doesn’t translate into finding a husband. But he took it too far almost immediately by saying the guys are “appeasing” her, that it was a “classless display,” and that he “expected a lot more from the oldest Bachelorette.” Also, that Clare is “not setting the right example for my [his] daughter,” and the real zinger, “I’m ashamed to be associated with you.” So yeah, absolute dumpster fire. Which producer should’ve gotten his luggage the minute he used the word, “appease?” 

Then he calls her crazy, again? And doesn’t let her say anything when she just let him rip her to shreds for the past five minutes? I give Clare props for not going off on this man because I would have been fuming the second he tried to sit down and lecture me about literally anything. 

Telling him to get out was totally the right move. Talk about classless! The way he handled this entire situation was classless. While following her yelling, “she’s not fit to be the mother to my child,” as she tries to walk away and screams, “I expected more from the oldest bachelorette in history, remember you’re almost 40.” 

Ageist, misogynistic, much? 

Overall, the lesson learned is #JusticeforTylerC

 

Clare’s Feminist Moment Of the Episode 

Jess: Despite the rest of my problems with Clare, I still absolutely loved what she said: “To sit there and say ‘you’re the oldest bachelorette’—guess what, I’m the oldest bachelorette, that’s 39, that’s standing here that’s single, because I didn’t settle for men like that.”

This iconic moment should be printed on t-shirts and mugs, which the company Betches already took the liberty of making

As Chris Harrison has said in regards to this episode, monumental. Plus, Chris Harrison is quickly ushered in to get a control on this narrative: “maybe you’ve already found him [Dale as her husband], huh?” This establishes that it’s literally game over for any of the other guys to get that final rose this season.

 

The First Group Date, AKA Basically Dale’s First One-On-One Date

Jess: First warning sign of the date, Chris Harrison enters to warn the men that, “this process will unravel you. You’re going to be seen.” Not necessarily the most comforting thing to say in this already tense, Dale-obsessed environment. 

We then see Clare boasting about Dale as she chipperly sings, “Dale plus Clare, Dale plus Clare, Dale, Dale, Dale, Dale.” Again, I wanted to shake Clare and be like “you’re the bachelorette! Enjoy this time, this process, and don’t just zero in on one person right away!” 

Previous bachelorette and queen, DeAnna Pappas Stagliano shows up for a “girls talk” that basically reinforces that this is the Dale show and that Clare somehow has a pair of his pants that she proceeds to sniff and then hands to DeAnna to sniff. If the roles were reversed and a male lead was sniffing a woman’s pair of pants with one of his friends, we would be absolutely ripping them a part in the Twitter-verse. 

Again, I just don’t get it. The whole process of The Bachelorette is about getting to know so many guys, so why is there this obsession with Dale? 

This is when I started to feel even more bad for the guys, as Clare skips the day portion of the group date, where the guys usually let loose and have fun with the lead, and goes straight to the night portion of the date. A lot of the guys were disappointed, with Zach C. expressing how the lack of clarity with Clare (no pun intended) has made him feel “so anxious.” It starts to highlight a pattern of Clare’s lack of respect for the men on her season who are there for her, besides Dale, and equally wanting to get to know her. 

The irony of toasting to quality time, is that Clare seems to only care about quality time with Dale, as they spend almost an hour together, astronomically more than the rest of the guys. It almost felt mocking as Dale called everyone in for a group hug like this was summer camp or something, rather than a reality show to find love. 

Watching Dale and Clare flirt literally made me feel second hand embarrassment. It was heinous, that’s all I have to say; however, it just showed such disrespect to the rest of the guys that Clare didn’t draw any boundaries with how much time she spent with each guy. She only cared about Dale, and basically hooking up with Dale, while the rest of the guys waited outside. I don’t blame Dale as a contestant, but more Clare as a lead. Since leads really set the tone, and this isn’t a good one. 

It was like watching two love-sick teenagers in rose colored glasses. Riley’s disheartened face basically said it all. 

 

Zach J.'s One-on-One Spa Day 

Rebecca: From the beginning of the date, it’s clear Clare’s mind is only on Dale, especially after she says she would have slept with him. Zach seems like he’s actually interested in getting to know her, but it felt awkward because of the fact that people were rubbing their feet. It’s also a bit awkward that he says he’d do anything for her, even tattoo his foot. Honestly, I agree with Clare assessment of Zach’s “nervous energy,” but she doesn’t even put effort into the date because she wants to see Dale. She claims she’s respecting the process, but she really isn’t feeling anything. 

Now, to the meat of it all. I don’t agree with Zach trying to pull her back after she decided against kissing him. His hand is very close to her neck, but it’s so large it’s also covering her boob. The second pull was really close to her neck. A woman does not have to kiss anyone she doesn’t want to. The fact that he’s pushing for the kiss is very much leaning toward sexual assault. A woman can revoke her consent at any time. No means no. Then, he followed her out of the pool. That’s way too much.

The aftermath of this really wasn’t handled properly at all. Clare explained how she worked so hard to heal herself, and the fact that we don’t see anyone try to talk to her like the article says is concerning. Also, I understand why Chris Harrison is sent in to send him home so Clare doesn’t have to, but why couldn’t Chris explain that it wasn’t a misunderstanding? Zach’s actions were horrible, and he needed to be called out in that moment. That’s ridiculous.  

There are many articles and tweets (specifically the thread from Reality Steve caught my eye) going around about this situation. Zach tries to defend himself saying he could have tossed her around, but that just makes it 10 times worse. A woman doesn’t know how a man will react when he’s turned down, especially if she’s only known him for a short period of time. I understand why Clare was so triggered. I don’t know the extent of her past trauma, but most women would try to get away from a man who is touching them. No woman deserves to go through that. Clare didn’t have to go through that.

Overall, Zach touched a woman after she revoked her consent. That’s consent 101, and this is why women keep getting blamed for rape. Men rape women. End victim-blaming. I’m not trying to discredit the men who get raped, either. Society needs to condemn all rapists and stop putting everything on the survivors for their actions. That’s all I’m saying on the matter or else I’ll go off.

Jess: Literally, preach to everything Rebecca has already written. This date was an absolute, awkward s*** show with Chris Harrison to seal the deal (where is the Chris Harrison option when any girl wants to ghost a guy on the second date?). However, I felt bad for Zach before the cringey pool part of the date defined by the extremely uncomfy almost-kiss. I felt bad that, again, Dale was the sun that Clare just revolved around. I feel like Clare just simply didn’t try from the beginning, mostly because he wasn’t Dale. 

Highlight of this one-on-one: Clare’s dog making an appearance.

Worst moment: how physically uncomfortable I got watching Zach trying to kiss Clare, and then grabbing her multiple times after she pulls away and following her out of the pool

Despite my issues with Clare, I get where she was coming from on this one, especially since she said she has had abusive relationships in the past. I think being grabbed by anyone the way she was would be particularly triggering. 

Cue, the most historical moment in Bachelorette history: Chris Harrison attending a dinner portion of a date for the lead and, thus, sending the men home, with Chris’ energy radiating the done energy I was already feeling. 

Truly “sobering,” as Bennett asserts at seeing Zach’s bags taken away. 

 

The Roast 

Rebecca: Honestly, any roast can go one of two ways: amazingly or horribly. In a roast, you’re not supposed to deliberately try and hurt other people’s feelings. Yes, feelings could get hurt anyway, but it’s supposed to be in good fun. First, I have to give props to comedian Margaret Cho for being an amazing guest for this date. She is wonderful, and her jokes made me laugh.

There were a lot of digs at Dale. There were really an excessive amount of digs at him, and Clare said she felt very uncomfortable. I wasn’t sure how I felt about Bennett from the start, but I think he’s great for speaking his mind, though his roasts weren’t funny and a tad harsh. It was very awkward. Clare thought Bennett had a lot of hostility and jealousy, and I partially agree. Bennett’s roasts leaned way more toward deliberate harm than comedy.

Bennett goes into the after-date party wanting to finally get time with Clare, and all she does is ask about Dale and why Bennett roasted him like he did. I understand the conversation needed to happen a bit, but once he explained why, I felt a bit bad for Bennett because Clare didn’t even try to get to know him.

Finally, Clare doesn’t give the rose to any of the men. All of the men are upset that not one of them got a rose.  

Jess: 

Kenny: “I hope this date has nothing to do with Dale.”

The producers: “Let’s bring in Dale, and have everyone talk s*** about him.”

I want to acknowledge the significance of the show getting badass Margaret Cho to guest star. I love her, she’s hilarious, and having her on this date was a huge deal. 

I love a good roast, especially because of the roast episode of The Office. I, again, just felt so bad for the guys. I loved Ben’s roast, and appreciated how it varied in its roasting rather than solely roasting Dale. The rest fell flat. 

I think it just highlights how, again, Clare has created an energy where the guys even have to feel threatened by Dale literally in early episode 3. Bennett really went for Dale and while I didn’t find his jokes funny, it just reflects this overall energy of the guys feeling threatened. I still stan, especially the mic drop, but would rather see more of his skincare routine. 

I did feel bad for Dale because Clare has honestly created this environment with a lack of boundaries that’s toxic and that’s the tea. 

Boom, roasted

 

The Other Men (Yes, There Are Other Men, Clare)

Rebecca: I think generally, the other men feel as though they aren’t getting to know Clare. Some have begun to speculate that she was talking to Dale before the show. Many see Dale as the frontrunner, especially after he says he’s best suited for her. All the men want to do is learn about her, but none of them feel as though their relationships improved with her, especially after the roast date. All of the men are picking up on the fact about how Clare’s interest is very much focused on Dale. I feel sympathy toward the men. 

At this point, they have all realized that Clare only cares about Clare. Sh*t is finally about to hit the fan, especially when the men mention walking out.

Jess: After the roast, I felt even worse for all the other guys. They are a great group of guys and Clare either doesn’t see it, or does and doesn’t care! Specifically asking each of the guys about Dale, rather than focusing on her individual relationships with the guys was appalling to watch. It crosses boundaries and I truly felt for the guys as they tried to get to know her and she kept pointing the spotlight back on Dale. 

Especially when Ben said how he had not asked her about any of the other guys, but she asked him about Dale and how you can’t get to know someone talking about another guy. I felt so bad!

Then giving herself the rose? I don’t think the guys deserved that at all. There were a lot of nice guys there and, from my view, she just neglected to get to know them. I 100 percent support the guys walking out on her, because at this point it’s disrespectful. 

Where’s Chris Harrison to send Clare and Dale home? 

 

The Dale of it All (Just Everything Dale) Or Dale Plus Clare, Dale Plus Clare, Dale, Dale, Dale 

Rebecca: Before the second rose ceremony, Clare has already proclaimed she’s falling in love with Dale. She acts like a giddy teenager with Dale. I’m super glad that she found someone she loves this early, but really?

Also, why did she ask for his ripped pants? That’s excessive and a bit creepy! DeAnna just reaffirmed Clare’s feelings, which is cool, but she did sniff his pants, too. Then, Clare jokes it might be the “shortest season ever!” Of course, the producers could see this was happening. That’s why everything blew up the way it did. They probably knew from night one they needed to figure something out.

The speech Dale gives to the other men about honor on the date was uncalled for. Also, they went to her room for 60 minutes when he said he’d only take five? They were really gone for that long? That’s so disrespectful and unfair to the other men. Poor Eazy for being the man to break that up. The fact that Dale comes back to talk to her again is wrong. Also, why can’t Dale just own up to the fact that he sought out more time? I call bull sh*t on that lie. 

Also, Dale dug himself into a deeper hole saying that he felt he was the best “suited” to comfort Clare. He really doesn’t appear to care about the other men until after the roast, when Dale finally admits that the roasts were deserved and he “owns” it. That redeems him a bit more in my eyes. I also appreciate Eazy talking to Dale and explaining why the men roasted him like they did. So, maybe he’s not a terrible man, but like Eazy said, he should try to be more aware of other people. Yet, all the show has given us is their physical chemistry and maybe one or two heartfelt conversations, so I guess I’ll see.

Jess: Preach to everything Rebecca has already written. Literally, I don’t think I’ve ever heard the name “Dale” more in my life until this season of The Bachelorette

We first see the producers usher in Dale after Clare has been yelled at by Yosef. I am still just so confused by Dale and Clare’s relationship, like why she feels so immediately comfortable with him; however, you can’t deny that Clare lights up whenever Dale’s in a room.

The only thing I found problematic was Clare’s description of how she has always wanted, “a man like Dale who will come over and protect me.” I wanted to take Clare by the shoulders and yell at her, “You don’t need a man to protect you! You’re the Bachelorette!” Yet, Clare asserts over and over, she’s falling in love and all about “the Dale of it all.” 

Even going as far to call him her “fiance.” It just was way too much, and her energy is too intense for my taste. 

 

A Summary of Clare

Rebecca: I know earlier in this recap I went off about how Zach’s inappropriate touching and Yosef’s verbal abuse. I felt awful for Clare in those moments, and I really do hope she’s okay. She doesn’t deserve to be treated like that by any man. She’s a strong woman, and I appreciate her rights and how she knows what she wants and goes after it. I think all women should be inspired by her voice; however, I do need to address how she’s been treating the other men. The show doesn’t revolve around just those two moments. No one is perfect, and as much as I admire Clare, she’s also done many things wrong. I found it easier to write about it all in one go than split it up.

First, it’s disrespectful that she didn’t tell the men she was cancelling the day portion of the first date earlier. That’s a waste of the other men’s time. She even asks the producers to hurry the after-date party along and to somehow get the rest of the conversations done sooner. That’s awful. After spending 60 minutes with Dale, she lets him crash another conversation? Really? Of course, she gives the rose to Dale because she didn’t spend any time with the other men. She says his actions are “bold,” but really she’s blinded by her feelings for him. 

Moving to the roast, Clare was extremely pissed about the men digging on Dale. Some of them were funny. Some of them weren’t like Bennett’s. I applaud her for standing up for the guy she likes, but if she had treated the other men fairly from the start, perhaps the men may not have went off that harshly. 

During the after-party of the roast date, all she does is try to talk about Dale and learn everyone’s thoughts. Once again, it’s Dale, Dale, Dale. Dale monopolizes all of the conversations and all the men have to explain things to her. She asks the men directly about Dale under the premise of learning what’s in the house. 

Finally, she doesn’t give any of the men a rose. That is ridiculous and just puts it all into perspective for the other men. That’s when the f-bomb drops, but not the curse. Clare calls Dale her fiance and she gives herself the rose for being bold, living her truth and showing up for herself. Good for her! Claps for her! But at the expense of the other men, that’s really wrong. Really wrong.

All I have is one question: If Clare knew from the start that she wanted Dale, could she have been more honest to the other men from the beginning instead of leading them on? Why did she let them go through this process for so long?

 

Tayshia Saves the Season

Rebecca: I guess we will both have to see what happens next week. At least the promo acknowledged Tayshia Adams.

Jess: The teaser at the end; I was screaming. Queen Tayshia’s promo was absolutely stunning, immaculate, never been done before, unprecedented, glowing, loved it! Please, Tayshia, come save us from this Dale and Clare misery as we wait for Chris Harrison to ominously say, “You’ve just blown up The Bachelorette.”   

 

Stay tuned for next week when The Bachelorette finally blows up.