Men Tell All Recap

It’s the holiday season; the season of giving; and to get in the spirit, Chris Harrison decided to don his programming Santa suit and shoot a couple of episodes of the Bachelorette down the chimney for us to enjoy this week. Evidently, Father Chris must have failed to notice the roaring flames at the base of the chimney, because the supposed “gifts” that were served up on ABC the past two nights, emerged from the proverbial fireplace a smoldering, sorry excuse for Bachelor programming, and were two of the most vapid, mind-numbingly boring episodes I have seen in a long time. Now I love the Bachelor, and writing about it brings me a great deal of pleasure, and I’m sure that Chris is just making us grind through a couple of episodes so we don’t take his mercurial plot mechanisms for granted, but boy were these two episodes a struggle! I hope I haven’t put you off reading; I can only hope my writing has not contracted the same editorial illness; guess you’ll just have to find out…

The men tell all was preceded by Blake Moyne’s one-on-one date and a rose ceremony to determine which men’s families Tayshia would be meeting at hometowns. The episode also marked the return of Chris Harrison, who, if he had thought had left the childish antics with his son at college, was sorely mistaken. The keg stands, dancefloor make outs and cold pizza and Pedialyte breakfasts that his son is now frivolously engaged in were nothing compared to the irresponsibility of Tayshia subjecting Bachelor nation to a date with Blake. The two went for a very uncomfortable Chakra reading date with a lady who can only be described as an unfortunate combination of Pippy Longstocking and the cartoon witch who gave Snow White her poisoned apple. Under her watchful gaze, it shouldn’t be a surprise that Blake and Tayshia couldn’t generate any kind of meaningful connection despite their sitting in one another’s laps, and ultimately, Blake got sent home, joining Ed in the bucket of “men who have large traps, dark hair, and who never really had a shot.” Tayshia cried a surprising amount sending Blake home, a sign of emotional instability that does not bode well for her future reactions to sending men home with which she has actually had a conversation! Justifying her tears, she said “it doesn’t feel good to send anyone home” – maybe she should have picked a different show.

Tayshia’s unceremonious ejection of Blake clearly put her in a murderous mood, because she followed up her date by immediately, and rather surprisingly sending Riley packing. Tayshia turned from lover into life coach telling Riley “I need you to continue to be vulnerable” much to his incredulity. “I can argue all day, but it doesn’t matter, because the end result is always going to be the same” – Riley is correct, although I hope he wasn’t lining up a post-show position on Trump’s election legal team… that kind of realistic and logical legal speak might make Rudy’s dye-spattered head explode.

For brevity’s sake, I won’t dwell for too long on the rose ceremony. Bennett and Noah clearly have the same prophecy as Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort because their symbiotic dramatic relationship meant that “neither could live while the other survived.” I will admit it was a surprise to see her take Bennett back only to dump him moments later, but the four men who made it to hometowns were Zac, Brendan, Ivan and Ben. In the interim, it was the men tell all.

As is tradition, Chris framed the men tell as “like nothing you’ve ever seen before” – this was true, but not because of unprecedented drama or strange plot twists… the novelty was that the men were six feet apart and that was it. Here were some highlights

  • A rather slimmed down and grape-like looking Ed took a few jabs at a non-present Chasen – Ed is my favorite cast-member this season by a country mile, I pray to god he gets a look in for Paradise
  • Noah and Bennett traded barbs like clockwork – this yielded the best moment of the night, when Kenny, fully clad in a camo suit, was referred to by Noah as “the One Direction party-boy manager.” Quite how he thinks this is an insult I will never know, but Kenny, stay stealthy in the camo, That’s What Makes You Beautiful.
  • Spencer wasn’t even there – what a pathetic performance from the first impression rose recipient
  • Blake was waxing lyrical about how glad he was that Tayshia showed up at the Men Tell All… as if she has a choice… – Kenny’s ears definitely pricked up at the words “Glad You Came” – unfortunately for both Blake and Kenny, Tayshia made it abundantly clear that they were not The Wanted ones!
  • Riley was invited for a hug and a conciliatory conversation on the couch with Tayshia – while this was a nice gesture, you could see Tayshia’s clear uncomfortability without the back pocket makeout card to avoid difficult conversations!
  • Chris gave Yosef the opportunity to not come off as the world’s biggest dick… Yosef categorically declined, doubling down on calling Clare old and classless. It was lucky Yosef was quarantined by himself in the chauvinist’s corner, because Ed and Jason looked like they were ready to stick some of Yosef’s medical devices where the sun don’t shine.

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