On the spectrum of “contestant with a suspicious romantic past” on The Bachelorette, there are two extremes. On one end there’s The Playboy, whose recent hookup with another woman is repeatedly brought up as evidence that he isn’t really on the show to date the Bachelorette. He is portrayed as seeking fame or just more sex, and there’s a non-zero chance that his ex is paraded in front of cameras to explain to the Bachelorette that he’s on the show for reasons that might be wrong. On the opposite end is The Virgin, whose complete lack of sexual history is repeatedly brought up as evidence that he isn’t ready for any sort of commitment—because what if he can’t figure out how sex works? Hypothetically, the show’s ideal man is somebody who has plenty of sexual experience, but who has never gotten tied up with any of his past partners, instead viewing his lifetime of sex as training to one day please a woman he met on television.
On this season of The Bachelorette, we had Colton, the first man to somehow embody both ends of the spectrum. Early in the season, Becca grew concerned about Colton’s past relationship with Tia, a contestant on last season of The Bachelor: Was Colton still emotionally attached to Tia? Was his sudden interest in hooking up with Becca so soon after hooking up with another woman from the same TV show evidence that he’s really in this just to be on TV? But then last week, Colton revealed that he is this season’s Virgin, causing Becca to literally walk away from him on a date. Why hasn’t Colton done sex before? And what does it mean for their future as a compatible couple?
Monday night, those two Coltons collided. For the second straight week, he talked a lot about being a virgin: He talked to his mom about the fact he’s never had sex, a discussion his uncomfortable mom later classified as “not a mother-son conversation.” (Last week, Colton mentioned he wasn’t sure if his dad knew about his virginity under the apparent assumption that most people keep their dads updated about their Sex-Haver status. His dad must still be in the dark—Colton had the virgin convo only with his mom.) Later, Colton confronted Chris Harrison about whether or not sex would be expected of him were he to end up in next week’s fantasy suites episode. Chris assured him it was a decision Colton and Becca would have to mutually agree upon. (“How you choose to handle it—as a man—is up to you,” were Chris’s exact, not-at-all-shady words.) It’s unclear whether Colton was excited or scared by the prospect—I think he was mainly just confused. I half-expected him to ask Chris where babies come from and how girls pee if they don’t have wieners.
On top of all that, his fling with Tia was brought back to the forefront, as Tia was given the opportunity to confront Becca prior to the episode’s rose ceremony. The scene was billed as Becca just reconnecting with some of her girlfriends ahead of a tough decision, but that’s not something that usually happens at this juncture of The Bachelorette—I think the show just wanted to remind us about Tia. Tia confessed that she still had strong feelings for Colton, saying she was “sick to my stomach” about the thought of Colton and Becca ending up together. It’s unclear why Becca would care about Tia’s interest in Colton, considering the two were just on a television show where they literally competed against each other for the same man, but Becca was taken aback by the news, and in the end, she dumped Colton. She said she did it neither due to his virginity nor her conversation with Tia, but last week she was calling Colton “a bronzed god” and fantasizing about him picking her up and “doing whatever he wants with me.” You don’t go from 100 to zero that quickly without having a pretty good reason to slam on the brakes.
I get it: Colton is basically the opposite of that ideal Bachelorette man we described earlier, as he brings all of the prior relationship baggage of The Playboy with all of the sexual cluelessness of The Virgin. But mainly, I feel kinda bad for him. He was just a week away from the sex episode. Instead, he is condemned to continue his life of emotionally taxing, sexless relationships.
Most Confusing Moment: Garrett and His Brother
The hometown dates were, for the most part, entirely uneventful. There’s normally some sort of conflict here: parents convinced their child shouldn’t marry the person from the TV show; awkward reunions between estranged family members; a home environment that makes it clear there’s a big difference between the two members of a couple. We didn’t get that this time around—Becca went into four white, middle-to-upper-class, two-parent households, where every family was happy to see their son and his new girlfriend. The biggest drama point was … Colton’s dad saying that if Becca doesn’t love Colton, she should dump him, which seemed pretty noncontroversial. (She even took him up on the advice!) There really isn’t much to talk about.
Except, I guess, this:
Garrett and his brother both made scissors over their eyes when they saw each other. Everybody laughed, but nobody ever said why. I just have to assume they’re in the least cool gang of all time.
Biggest Liar: Becca
Becca went to Buffalo with Jason, who explained that if she’s going to date a Buffalonian—which is apparently what you call a person from Buffalo—she needs to know how to eat buffalo wings. Naturally, the two then went to the Anchor Bar, where the buffalo wing was purportedly invented. There, they were entered in a one-minute wing-eating contest—a one-minute wing-eating contest that was A COMPLETE SHAM and for which I will not let Becca go uncriticized.
First off, the most important element of buffalo wings is that they are covered in buffalo sauce. This is incontrovertible. You can eat a chicken wing without buffalo sauce on it, but it would not be a buffalo wing. You can tell when somebody is eating buffalo wings because they are essentially impossible to eat without covering your entire mouth and all of your fingers in bright-red-orange sauce. However, while Jason and every other contestant immediately became slathered in the telltale signs of buffalo-wing consumption, Becca remained unblemished:
Becca was not eating buffalo wings; she was eating sauceless wings, the dry skin crackling in her mouth without a hint of flavor, so as not to tarnish her lipsticked mouth and polished fingernails. She is a fraud.
Secondly, there is the matter of the contest, which several signs and a host referred to as a “one-minute” wing-eating contest. During this sham of a competition, Becca did not eat her wings quickly: She ate at a pace of one wing every 40 seconds or so, and spent plenty of time play-flirting with Jason, attempting to distract him and even smearing a wing on his face. (The wing left no mark on Jason’s face, because, as previously established, Becca was eating fraudulent, sauceless wings.) However, at the end of the minute, Becca’s basket was loaded with the bones of at least five wings. Where did she get these bones from? Were they stolen from a more worthy competitor? I suspect that Becca was using PEDs (pre-eaten drumsticks) to artificially enhance her eating performance.
BUT WE ARE JUST APPROACHING THE BASE OF BECCA’S MOUNTAIN OF LIES. Last week in the Bahamas, Becca stunned Blake by leading him down a random beach only to—surprise!—walk him right into a concert by the Baha Men. Blake did not necessarily know that it was the Baha Men, because they did not play “Who Let the Dogs Out” in his presence. Using context clues, he might have figured it out: They’re definitely the most famous Bahamian band, and their other song sounded like “Who Let the Dogs Out?” (albeit with less barking). Regardless, Blake never mentioned that he knew the band he was dancing to was the Baha Men.
This week on Blake’s hometown date, he got her back: He stunned her by leading her down the halls of his old high school, into the auditorium, only to—surprise!—walk her right into a concert by Betty Who. Now, most people would go “Betty Who?!?!?,” because Betty Who is even less famous than the Baha Men. But not Becca! She immediately screamed “OH MY GOD, IT’S BETTY WHO” and later grabbed her head and proclaimed “she is my favorite singer!” She then happily bounced along to all the lyrics of Betty Who’s songs.
Becca, nobody’s favorite singer is Betty Who, an Australian singer who has had two songs reach the top 100 of the Billboard 200. Also, your favorite singer certainly isn’t Betty Who. By my count, 41 of the 187 Twitter accounts you follow are musicians, which is 22 percent—highlights: Desiigner, Halsey, Lil Yachty and Lil Uzi Vert, and for some reason I can’t possibly comprehend, the three members of One Direction who are not Zayn or Harry. Notably absent? Betty Who, that’s who.
Becca has repeatedly urged the men on her show to be honest with her, if nothing else. After last season’s betrayal by Arie, that’s understandable. And yet, multiple times in this episode alone, Becca blatantly flouted the truth. We’re left with one question: (Betty) Who the hell is the real Becca?
Most Botched Date Idea: Jason
Anybody who doesn’t see the romance in a wing-eating date is somebody who I don’t want to be romantic with. Perhaps a more leisurely wing-eating date would have been better, instead of a frenzied wing-eating contest which drove Becca to repeated deceit, but I digress. The real issue with Jason’s date came after the wing eating, when the two went to an empty hockey arena so that, uh, Jason could show off how good he is at hockey. (After all, he is wooing a Minnesotan.) At the end, he made a bet with her: “If I score, you owe me a kiss.”
Jason’s gimmick is not particularly original: Happy Gilmore took The Mom From Modern Family to an empty hockey arena and asked her to score a goal or else kiss him; Van Wilder also took Tara Reid to an empty hockey arena and said that if she couldn’t score on him, she owed him a date.
But Jason screwed the whole thing up. Happy and Van (both of whom end up with the girl in the end) gave their partners the opportunity to do impressive hockey things—The Mom From Modern Family scores (but chooses to kiss Happy anyway) and Tara Reid turns out to be a hockey prodigy. Jason gave Becca no such chance: He just skated up to her and rammed the puck into the net behind her. Becca wasn’t even wearing goalie pads, so basically Jason was saying that she had to endure the physical pain of having a hockey puck slammed into her body if she wanted to avoid a kiss.
Luckily, she likes kissing Jason—she repeatedly says he’s a great kisser, even though his kisses all seem to involve a lot of weird jaw action. Honestly, the guy kisses kinda like he’s eating wings. Anyway, it’s good to know that Jason can do cool hockey tricks—it explains why his hair is perpetually helmet shaped.