-First group date this episode was basically an exact replica of one of Katie’s group dates last season when Nick showed up to host. This time it was Kaitlyn. Just like the guys on Katie’s season had to open up and be vulnerable (and Thomas talked about himself), this one the women were asked if there were parts of themselves they weren’t proud of. I get that the show is trying to change by becoming more diverse, not only in their casting, but the stories they tell, but these “forced trauma” stories to me are a bit much. I’m glad the women shared what they did, but they only did because of the situation they were put in. Basically “tell us what you don’t like about yourself” doesn’t offer much in terms of how to answer. You HAVE to find something you don’t like or else you’ll be looked at differently and someone who isn’t self aware.
-Genevieve talked about how she self sabotaged past relationships. Hunter had a shitty ex who she basically changed her life for. He compared her to his exes, she changed her hair, her eye color, went to the gym to abtain a body that in her mind was unattainable – yeah, probably a good thing she finally recognized what a douche that guy was and got out of that. Serene talked about how she’s always had a smaller frame, which led people to believe she may be anorexic, which then in turn led her to watch what she ate around people, etc. A vicious cycle as you could probably imagine. At least they didn’t turn one of these women’s answers into what they did with Thomas. This date seemed to be taken a little more seriously. Especially since there wasn’t even any drama at the after party either.
-We saw him talk to Serene at the after party about her family didn’t really talk about their feelings growing up so this was kinda new to her. Susie appreciated Clayton talking about his body struggles, then they made out inside AND outside. And then with Eliza, they both stood in front of the mirror looking at themselves and gave positive affirmation. Eliza ended up getting the rose. Was all very productive for those involved, I assume, but like I said my only issue is it just comes across more authentic when it’s presented organically and not because the producers decide they’re gonna force a question on everyone so we can get these reactions. If the ultimate goal is to get someone out there watching to resonate with them, then I guess it worked. I just like when things are done more organically, which pretty much means I’m watching the wrong show since NOTHING organic happens on this show.
-As for Sarah’s 1-on-1, the biggest complaint I had was I can’t believe two attractive people were running around downtown LA in their underwear, and no pics ever got out of that. I get pics and videos sent to me from Toronto, Croatia, and Austria this season yet nothing from LA? Pretty surprising. Not that it was packed with fans who saw what they were doing, but it was still pretty out there in the open with people walking by. Oh well. I guess that’s why visual spoilers every season are hit and miss. I had video or photos from every other location they went to this season (minus Iceland) yet not LA. Kinda weird, but that’s the way it is sometimes.
-During Sarah’s date, we went back to the mansion to learn about ShrimpGate. Again, something that I didn’t even realize was a thing. Yet they tried to make it one. Short story: Elizabeth made shrimp, Shanae ate a lot of them, people were asking what happened to all the shrimp, then Cassidy made some herself? And that was the drama? What did I miss here? What the hell was that? Shanae was mad because Elizabeth didn’t make enough? She was mad because Elizabeth told people not to eat Shanae’s shrimp? It was the most overblown storyline that the show tried to make into something that I can remember. Obviously they just wanted to foreshadow the ongoing Elizabeth/Shanae feud, but they sure as hell picked one of the most obscure and confusing things to focus on. I may not be a fan of Shanae, but props to her for choking down at least 8 shrimp for herself. I’m sure I would’ve done the same.
-So lets just get to Shanae. And I can’t believe I have to repeat myself on this every single season, but all you have to do is look at social media last night to see how many people are getting furious with Clayton for not seeing Shanae’s antics. You have to remember, Clayton does not see what Shanae is saying in her ITM’s, nor do producers tell him, until we see it. He even alluded to it last night:
Oh boy…what I was being told then and what I’m seeing now is like watching two different movies ???#thebachelor
— Clayton Echard (@ClaytonEchard) January 25, 2022
Maybe not necessarily alluding to ITM’s, but just the fact the Shanae he was getting and interacting with is not the one he’s seeing on TV. In last night’s episode, if you noticed almost all of Shanae’s “villain” behavior was done in her ITM’s. Telling Elizabeth to f off, saying she’s not there to make friends, boasting about herself, etc. He sees NONE of that during filming. He knows that Elizabeth and Shanae have conflict and that’s it. And since we know he keeps Shanae over Elizabeth at the next rose ceremony, I’m sure he’ll be crucified for that. I’m also pretty sure he was told to keep her around as well. Judging by his tweet, I fully expect Clayton to tell Shanae how he really feels at the WTA. He’s seen what she was doing behind the scenes, sees how she was basically manipulating him on purpose, and now has all the ammo he needs to call her out on it.
-As for Shanae herself, she’s the classic villain. We’ve seen people like her many times over. I know right now because we’re in the moment, people are saying how she’s the worst human ever and the worst villain they’ve ever seen, but that’s just recency bias. Oh sure, she’s well deserving of all the criticism she’s getting and then some. Absolutely. But lets not pretend like we haven’t seen this exact type of behavior before in the past – in the men and the women. This is just the 2022 version. And when the “Bachelorette” starts filming in March and airing in May/June, there will 100% be a guy there that won’t get along with the others, will steal time away from the “Bachelorette” every chance he can get, will say he’s not there to be buddies with the other guys, will come across as a cocky alpha male who thinks he walks on water, and will claim he and the “Bachelorette” have the best connection. Not too hard to predict.
-It’s just amazing to me that Shanae can watch this back and think that everyone else is in the wrong and she’s in the right. I mean, I went to check her social media last night and all the things she reposted on her IG story are just of people complimenting her for eating a bunch of shrimp. I’m sure there were tons of people with IG stories who tagged her about how rude, condescending, elitist, and flat out bitchy she was being, but of course she’s doesn’t re-post those. Have some self awareness. Shanae’s game plan from here on out on social media (as well as Cassidy’s) should be to stop pretending you didn’t act the way you did, don’t repost anything (either positive or negative) and address your abhorrent behavior at the WTA. Will she do that? Of course not. And it will only get worse for her from there. But hey, I think this is what Shanae wants anyway, so of course she’ll never listen to my sound advice.
-I must follow all that with the caveat of, you can be critical of Shanae and call out her behavior on the show, but that doesn’t give anyone the right to call her names, send death threats to her or any family members, disparage her IG comment section, etc. Hell, here’s a good idea: say nothing. The one thing that’ll get to Shanae the most (and to basically any contestant for that matter) is if you literally don’t talk about them. At all. I kinda have to since I’m recapping the show, but when I talk about it, I’m also offering ways to help combat the situation, not just piling on. I’ve never in the history of IG written something remotely negative on someone’s IG comments. Hell, I don’t think I’ve ever commented on more than probably 5 IG feeds in my life, show or not. You all watched the show last night. Is there really anything else to add in regards to Shanae? I really don’t feel like breaking down the Elizabeth/Shanae feud since it’s so one-sided. It’s clear what Shanae is doing. I just try to remind people to not get so carried away by what they see on TV, and remember that unless Shanae did or said something in front of Clayton, he’s seeing this behavior for the first time like we are. Just keep that in mind.
So another episode ending before a rose ceremony meaning it looks like we’ll be playing catch up all season long. Next week will start with the cocktail party and rose ceremony that Elizabeth, Kira, and Melina get sent home on before the remaining 15 women head to Houston. And without knowing for sure, I can pretty much guarantee next episode will end with Shanae’s meltdown at the group date after party that she crashes and chucks the winning teams trophy. I doubt they’ll even get to Serene’s 1-on-1 at Pleasure Pier next week. They will spend a lot of time on the football group date and the after party.
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