Reality Steve

Reader Emails

“Reader Emails” & Joey Jones Exes Speak Out

Photo Credit: ABC

Hey Steve,

At what point in the night do they take the big cast photo with the Bachelor/Bachelorette? Do they wait til after Chris Harrison says that it’s time for the rose ceremony and just kinda break filming to take the photo then set everyone up for rose ceremony filming after? Or are Hannah and a suitor interrupted in order to have the photo happened as scheduled. I just looked at this years and it seems like Scott is not there so it must have been taken post his elimination.

Comment: It’s at the end of the night, but before the rose ceremony.


I know I’ve probably said this before, but just want to reiterate how much I love Hannah as the bachelorette. She’s quirky, funny without being super vulgar (like Kaitlin), and relatable. I am a fellow passenger on the “hot mess express.” But I sincerely relate with her because I have to try to reconcile my faith and sex. As someone who grew up, and is still catholic, celibacy until marriage was drilled in my brain. Like many brought up this way, I rebelled, although later than most. Like Hannah, I sometimes find it hard to reconcile my past with my faith. I am glad that she is the bachelorette, and hope she is happy.

Comment: I think she’s been fine so far. Of course there will always be people who dislike the lead. But after what we saw on the live ATFR, to what we’ve seen through three episodes, I don’t think there’s a comparison. No doubt, she bombed on the ATFR. Chris Harrison and Robert Mills have both said in interviews after that night they were asking themselves, “Did we choose the wrong woman?” But they also then say she nails this season. I like the fact that she’s not polished with a bunch of rehearsed answers. Makes her seem more unique. I think the whole point is to show mistakes and blemishes because that makes someone more relatable to the average fan.

As for the sex/faith thing, yeah, that’s gonna be huge come overnights. She obviously struggled with it, but also realized it’s her life and she can do what she wants and shouldn’t be worried about being judged. She’s said that in interviews, which pretty much confirms she had sex on the overnights. And that happens with basically every lead, so there’s obviously nothing wrong with that.


Huge fan here! Always enjoy your spoilers/podcast! Sorry for the long email in advance.

That being said, I am a huge Survivor fan, really in the weeds with podcasts (Rob Has A Podcast shoutout!), strategy/format, former players, etc. etc. and have always loved that you are a big fan as well. That being said, I was a bit disappointed with your take on the Edge of Extinction and was absolutely shocked to hear you say you definitely would have voted for Chris because of his resume. Don’t get me wrong, it was an entertaining finale and the second he said he was going to make fire I knew he might win. Nothing against Chris as a person, but I think this is just another season where the social strategist got overlooked in favor of big moves. What happened to the days when the Sandra’s of the game won??

Unfortunately, I don’t think Gavin had a great Final Tribal, but I believe that was partly due to the twist being rigged against him! How could he possibly explain why he should win over someone who didn’t play a classic game of survivor to a jury that was hoping to win by not playing a classic game of Survivor? That being said, I do think there are some things he should have focused more on in Tribal and I am hopeful it may at least give you a different way of looking at why he deserved votes (and in my opinion, the win!)


Survivor is at it’s core is a game about voting people out in a way that still gives them the incentive to vote for you to win. Chris, legitimately only voted one person on that jury out (Rheem) as the other person he voted out (Keith) quit the EOE and wasn’t on the jury. Chris didn’t have to outwit, strategize against, or hurt anyone! Gavin did and should have been rewarded for such.

Gavin was a huge part of the social politics of the game. He was rotating door – everyone came to him and told him what was going on, and he could sway decisions because he had everyone’s trust. An example of this is the Aurora vote. Lauren told Gavin she wanted Aurora out, Victoria told Gavin she wanted Julie out. Ultimately, Gavin chose that vote. While a casual viewer may say that Rick persuaded them at tribal to vote Aurora, it was clear as day that decision had already been made (and since the game, Gavin, Lauren and Victoria have all said the plan was always to vote out Aurora and that was not Rick’s move).

Gavin never had a vote against him! This goes to show he was great at navigating the social politics of the game and strategizing well. He was also the one who brought together the Lesu group with his Kama people. Nobody else was as savvy at bringing groups of people that they trusted together.

He wore a pineapple shirt solely to convince people he was on vacation and not really playing. Come on! That is just fantastic Survivor.


Gavin won 2 immunity challenges, I believe Chris also won 2. Chris did have to win his way back into the game as well, something Gavin didn’t have to do because he wasn’t voted out!

Gavin got Rick to play an idol for him. Chris got Lauren to play and idol for him.

Gavin was willing to earn his spot in Final Tribal and take on Rick at fire. And I would argue that sense Chris gave Julie immunity she should have been able to choose who she wanted to take with her to final tribal rather than Chris dictating that he would be making fire. She could have chosen Chris and let Gavin and Rick go to fire.

And the idol Chris played was given to him by production at the end of the game! Give me a break.


Gavin should have harped on the idea that he had to be on and playing the whole time he was out there. He also should have argued that if the jury were in his shoes how would they would feel that the 32 days in the game before Chris came back wouldn’t matter? Why were they all trying to stay in if they could have just left and gone to EOE to make friends on the jury?
39 days vs. 13 days. Need I say more?

In that particular Final 3, I believe Gavin should have won and he would have gotten my vote. He was the underdog against the theme this season. He certainly outwitted and outlasted and I feel was on pretty equal footing in regards to outplaying. Even if he does come in second in that category, why does outplay seem to be ranked as more important (big-move-itis) ??

Oh and as a viewer, watching a whole season that didn’t matter is just beyond frustrating.

I guess I just wanted to present a case for Gavin that wasn’t solely he was out there for 39 days. I really think he was a social player and unfortunately in this era of Survivor many fans seem to overlook social players as good players and even players worthy of winning.

If you made it through this diatribe, thank you. I can’t wait for Survivor Season 39 and a great Bachelorette season because Hannah is funny af.

Thanks Steve!

Comment: I can honestly say I don’t really disagree with much that you said. You make a lot of valid points. With that said, I still would’ve voted for Chris in that final and not thought twice about it. The final vote is a subjective one, and I didn’t put as much stock into what Gavin did as you do. Which is fine. It’s why “Survivor” is so successful.

Hi – Just curious what your thoughts were on Mike Fleiss’ tweet on the show “paying Kelly Ripa’s salary.” I haven’t seen that he has issued an apology or retracted his statement at all.

Comment: Just Fleiss being Fleiss. His tweets are worthless. He’s basically the television version of Magic Johnson when he tweets. Go look at Magic’s tweets and you’ll know what I mean.

Hi Steve,

After reading your spoilers and then – after the Bachelorette has started airing – seeing the almost insanely intense ‘discussions’ on Luke P and what might lurk inside his sorry soul (pretty sure he can be characterized as such after two weeks of social media hatred), I am wondering if you know of how villains in the past have dealt with something like this?

I am not necessarily asking for names, (I did hear your podcast with Wes) but this is my take:

Luke P has come off as a person with a personality disorder. Either someone with narcissistic or psycopathic features. If his edit is manipulated that way and he has been encouraged by producers to act up to this edit (be BOLD or what not) this may constitute a serious case of IIED – intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Yes, I know he can’t sue, but the guy is literally being crucified more than any other I can remember.

This crowd mentality is not only on SoMe, TV personalities such as Lauren Zima are screaming “creepy”; and even Chris Harrison is chiming in.

If he actually is a narcissist, he will most likely react even more strongly to this (If possible) than a person without those features.

Personally, I think there is a good chance he actually has mental issues, just based on what I’ve read.

His type – edited or not- is very well known to many women (including myself) who have walked into the trap of a narcissist or what’s worse. So either he has problems or the producers have read up on the DSM.

Even though Luke may be a mean, superficial, emotionally abusive SOB, I think what’s happening right now is down right dangerous.

I have attached a link to a video broadcast on the dark sides of reality TV and especially what happens to ‘villains’ afterwords. If you watch it, you can see that mental break downs and suicides have happened in Australia and the UK.

The psychologist interviewed is calling for regulation to protect contestants. I agree. What do you think of that? Or is it beyond your scope of interest to have an opinion about that? 😉 I get it if it is…

Thank you for a great podcast with Wes whom I had never heard of before…

Comment: The show does a horrible job at preparing their contestants for what’s to come post show. They do nothing. Because once you’re off their show, they truly don’t care about you anymore. Oh sure, some producers here and there will keep in touch with certain contestants, but by and large, they don’t. They have a new season of people to worry about, and do you really think they’re concerned about someone’s well being a year or two after they were on the show? No.

It’s probably their biggest failure as a show. They just do not put anything in place to prepare contestants for the negative side of being on this show. Will it change? Probably not. They haven’t for 17 years, why start now? Unfortunately, it’s going to lead to some stories that you saw in that video in the future. It’s inevitable. And I’m not saying the show is the #1 reason why someone would commit suicide or fall into depression and nothing else is a factor. But don’t tell me it hasn’t played a significant role in the deaths we have seen in this franchise. Not to mention other contestants who have spoken publicly after the fact about how they contemplated hurting themselves.

Reality Steve ; You are so smart and awesome to read!!
Thank you!

Comment: Thank you. Honestly, I couldn’t agree with you more.

Hi Steve

I just started watching 24 last month and you have always been very outspoken about your love of 24. I like a lot of the shows you talk about like Friday Night Lights. Hulu just got 24 a few months ago and I’m on season 7 and saw things going really rough for Jack and decided to read a recap of the series finale and it’s definitely not a happy ending for Jack so my question for you is, is it worth watching the final season?

I hate when shows end badly on a bad note for the main star and am disappointed he doesn’t get to get away from everything and just be happy with his daughter or Audrey.

In season 5 after he came back from the dead when Kim told him she couldn’t be around him it was really sad and basically the same thing that happened to Ray Donovan with his daughter in season 7 of Ray Donovan and felt so bad cuz both mean we’re just trying to protect people and their family. Especially their daughters. Speaking of which you’d love Ray Donovan (played by Liev Shrieber) he’s a bad ass. Like a one man mob. It’s a showtime show so gotta add it to Hulu but it’s worth it.

Thanks for your spoilers and commentary

Comment: Yes. I think season 8 ends in a way that’s fitting for Jack Bauer after what he’d been through the whole series. Then watch the one when they re-booted it, technically season 9, which is only 12 episodes I believe. That’s the last season with Jack in it.


How long do the bachelorette contestants have with Hannah during group dates or cocktail parties? 5 minutes? 20 minutes? Longer? I can’t seem to gather how long they get individual time with the lead. It seems ridiculous how quick they claim a love connection if they only get like 20 one in on minutes each “date”.

Thank you!

Comment: Yes, it is ridiculous. That’s why people make fun of the show. They don’t even believe it themselves. They’re falling in love with the thought of falling in love on TV. In reality, it’s just lust at that point. In the end, you’re choosing someone basically that you want to continue to date. That’s when the relationship begins.

As for the group date, it varies. There’s a pecking order on this show. Some guys/women get more time than others because they have a story to tell. The minutes will always vary so there’s really no solid answer.

Hey Steve!

Is it just me or does Peter remind you of Ben Higgins? I think it’s the smile and facial expressions…

Comment: Definitely has the look. I can see it.



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