"Bachelor in Paradise" almost surely thought The Split, aka Casa Bachamor, was going to (*Jesse Palmer serious voice*) Change Everything. But after four episodes ... did it? Did it disrupt anything beyond the relationships that everyone already had on death watch? Oh wow, Logan and Shanae turned into a mess? WHO COULD'VE GUESSED?! Probably could've just kept everyone together, fed the fresh contestants onto the beach like normal and gotten the same result – saving yourself an additional hotel bill and the indignity of clearly stealing from another dating show in desperation.
Well, let's deal with at least one of the (minor) ramifications as, last we checked, Lace was marching onto the beach to find out if Rodney was being loyal. Spoiler alert: He was not, conveniently on a date with Eliza when Lace arrived. When Rodney returns, he breaks up with Lace, saying "I don't want to see you hurt" (BIT LATE FOR THAT NOW!) while she responds by bailing from the show. It's all pretty obvious and predictable, and for all the concerns about "Lace-ifer" making an appearance, things simmer out without much guff.
The REAL drama happens with everyone else on the beach, though, as during Lace's visit, she drops the news that the women got a bunch of tempting dude-testants back at the hotel with them. PANIC BREAKS OUT – with Brandon unfortunately the biggest victim, having PTSD about his breakup on the beach with Michelle during "The Bachelorette" and worrying Serene's going to do the same. And now I'M worried that Brandon's gonna start acting irrational and hitting on the new girls in order to make sure that he's got a back-up plan if Serene comes back to the beach draped all over Rick or someone. THIS IS WHY YOU SHOULD'VE LEFT EPISODES AGO!
It'll be even more devastating because, back at the Estates of Sadness, the women COULD NOT CARE LESS about the new guys. Jill calls them "hot garbage" and everyone else just continues minding their own business while Thor's Back-Up Abs and company do their 14th workout session of the day. But obviously we can't have peace in the valley, so Palmer shows up to deliver the news that Lace bailed because she went down to the beach and discovered Rodney had moved on from her – AND IT COULD ALSO HAPPEN TO YOU! Except ... could it? Wow, hard to believe the long-term stable connection of Rodney and Lace couldn't make it. While he's there, Palmer also gets permission to send Rick and Olu home because no one cares about them. Poor guys.
Back on the beach, Logan is causing a mess – shocking exactly no one. The guy whose whole shtick on Gabby and Rachel's season was that he couldn't pick a woman ... CAN'T MAKE UP HIS MIND!? M. Night Shyamalan WISHES he had such shocks in his bag! Indeed, Logan's technically with Shanae, but last week he went on a date with Sarah ... and now he's making out with Kate and ready to hone in on her (which is even more confusing because she was last seen locking lips and hips with Jacob). Somehow, in just a few days, Logan made himself a WHOLE NEW LOVE TRIANGLE with a WHOLE NEW collection of women – quite the achievement if it wasn't also sleazy as hell.
Logan and Kate clearly think they can keep this messy juggling act going too ... that is, until she gets the first date card of the episode. So instead of asking anyone out right away, she takes Jacob aside to break up with him and Logan ... doesn't offer the same courtesy to Sarah. Instead, when Kate comes back from her breakup, she asks out Logan and he jumps on it without giving a quietly devastated Sarah a second glance. After the fact, he tries to properly break up with her – even trying to take her hand, as if he REALLY cares about her feelings anymore – but Sarah's currently cracking her knuckles in rage and wishing for karma to do its worst now that he's made her look like an idiot. Indeed, who could've expected going all-in with THIS man ...
... would make you look dumb.
While the show tries to sell you on Casa Bachamor being the biggest, wildest twist in "Bachelor" history, the ACTUAL craziest twist is taking place back at the Estates of Sadness where Shanae and Genevieve are now ... BFFs? The two are just getting shablammered back at the hotel, spanking each other, praying for rain and having theological debates with the rest of the women about Baby Jesus versus Thirtysomething Jesus. It's very thoughtful television.
So back to Logan and Kate, who – after nuking both of their previous relationships – have an actual date to go on. The two take turns giving each other massages while Logan's under-table cam makes him look like the creepiest Sun God in all of theology.
It's like if the Sun Baby from "Teletubbies" grew up into a creeper. From the animated bird villain from "Storks" to a very mace-able sun god, Logan resembles a lot of things this season – a good dating prospect being absolutely none of them. But Kate's certain she's committed to him, and the two convince themselves that they want to be with each other forever. I GIVE IT A WEEK. Just wait until a new woman walks onto that beach, Kate: You'll be joining Sarah and Shanae's company in no time.
Back on the beach, Johnny is thinking about how locked in he is on Victoria and how much he really cares about her – so much so that, when the new women arrived, he never looked away from Victoria. SURE BRO, NICE REVISIONIST HISTORY. He proclaims, though, that he's so committed to Victoria that he's "feeling like he's ready to fall in love" with her – a phrase with more hedging than the final 15 minutes of "The Shining."
Captain "Ready To Maybe Sorta Kinda Commit to Possibly Ordering A Combo Meal Together" might want to commit a little harder because Victoria's got competition for her heart back at the Estates of Sadness: Alex, who made her feel wanted without a word when he sweetly gave her a head massage the other night during a time of stress. And now she has a date card with his name on it – a date that goes VERY charmingly. The two joke about how he looks like everyone's douchebag ex-boyfriend and in general share some really sparking, genuine interactions. He seems like a grown-up on Victoria's level, while Johnny still seems like a guy having fun – one who, when the final week comes on "Paradise," will probably say that this was a hoot but maybe he's not actually ready for an engagement. #TeamAlex
As for other new connections forming, Brittany finally gets some quality time with her crush Tyler – and I mean QUALITY time, complete with a leering inflection, because yeah, they're making out and ready to be a couple. Andrew's gonna have a bad reunion come ... whenever they get around to reuniting everyone! But because Brittany is a damned MVP, she makes sure that before things go much further, she wants to chat with Andrew to clarify where they are AND she wants Tyler to talk with Shanae so she knows she's not being led on. WE RESPECT A LADY TRYING AT ALL TIMES TO DO RIGHT BY OTHERS!
Unfortunately, her master plan fails because Shanae notices Brittany and Tyler are missing from the group and loudly rages to her new BFF Genevieve – who now seems to regret their newfound bestie-dom. Genevieve offers to find Tyler ... but then she finds him face-to-face with Brittany and decides to NOPE herself right out of this situation. Welp, Shanae says, hopefully Logan isn't dating anyone new and forming fresh connections – SMASH CUT IMMEDIATELY TO LOGAN DATING SOMEONE NEW AND FORMING A FRESH CONNECTION. The Doomsday Clock just ticked to midnight.
Before the end of days, though, we have a new episode – beginning with Palmer arriving to the Estates of Sadness to explain to the women that The Split's been tough but "it's all been in the name of love." LIAR! LIIIIIIIIAR! Everyone knows nothing promotes a strong foundation in new relationships like IMMEDIATELY TEARING THOSE RELATIONSHIPS APART! But Palmer's not just here to lie. He's also here to end Casa Bachamor – but with the warning that the beach they're returning to won't be the same as how they left it. Except ... yeah, it pretty much is. Again, the only relationships that are in tatters are the ones that were barely assembled to begin with.
Indeed, Genevieve is the first to arrive on the beach, beelining over to Aaron to find out if he stayed loyal – and he was. Cue the happy hugs and proclamations that, actually, this very stupid stunt was a very helpful relationship test. Genevieve, that's the Stockholm Syndrome talking.
After all, ask Logan and Shanae how great this test was. She arrives and Logan takes her aside to deliver the bad news – complete with Sarah cackling about the karma of it all in the corner. Logan was going to be in trouble no matter what – but he CERTAINLY doesn't help his cause by trying to blame Shanae for his new relationship with Kate, saying that her love triangle-ing with James pushed him here. GIRL, YOU SHOULD'VE JUST KEPT NOT AARON AROUND! Could've saved yourself and your vocal chords a lot of pain. That all being said ... literally 24 hours ago, Shanae was hunting down Tyler to jump on his 14 abs and pitched a fit when she couldn't SOOOOOOO maybe this relationship was just a bad idea to begin with.
Still, it takes about 17 conversations to officially put this zombie relationship into a grave – waaaay too long, especially when Kate decides she wants to get involved and tracks down a crying Shanae on the beach to chat, aka gloat. BECAUSE WHEN A WOMAN GETS DUMPED, OBVIOUSLY SHE WANTS TO HEAR FROM THE OTHER WOMAN! It's just bitterly rubbing salt on the wound – and makes Kate look really ugly in the process, following Shanae around while she actually tries to be the bigger person and remove herself from the situation. Stop instigating more anger and heartbreak – and just take your man and your W elsewhere, Kate! Congratulations to everyone involved here: NONE OF YOU WIN! I guess if you're Kate, you gotta get all your smirking self-satisfaction in now before Logan's eye wanders off in about three hours and he starts hitting on a particularly attractive palm tree.
Elsewhere, Jill returns to the beach to find Jacob and tell him that she was totally loyal to him the entire time, exclusively sleeping with her love crystals. Jacob appreciates that ... but also promptly breaks up with her, because the connection's just not there anymore I guess. Considering Jacob no longer has anything going with Kate ... or anyone else particularly, I'm not sure why he HAD to end this relationship now – but it's done, with Jill quite literally running off the beach and off the show. Thus ends a pretty consistently tragic and miserable run on "Paradise" for Jill. If she's hoping for a Jared-and-Ashley love story, at least she's certainly got the "being constantly hurt and crying" part down.
As for more mature relationships, Andrew and Brittany come together to discuss the state of their union. Verdict: BAD! Brittany asks Andrew how he feels about their connection, and he sounds awfully uncommital. (Plus, right before Brittany showed back up the beach, we saw you being chatty with your bad flatbread pizza pal Jessenia.) So Brittany comes right in with the bad news: She's feeling a better connection with Tyler, so she thinks they should just be friends – and Andrew agrees! So they all happily move on to their new respective relationships, still able to hang together and be happy. WHAT ARE THESE GROWN ADULTS DOING ON IDIOT CHAOS BEACH!?
Speaking of people who shouldn't be here, Brandon and Serene happily reunite. Nothing new to report here – they're super happy, super in love and super disinterested in anyone else – so THEY SHOULD JUST LEAVE! Nothing good can come from staying here, beyond free vacation time ... so actually, sure, I get milking that as long as possible. But don't blame me when Palmer decides Serene should be banished to Depression Island before marching Michelle back into Brandon's life or something next episode! YOU HAD YOUR CHANCE!
Finally, we get to Johnny and Victoria, who breaks the bad news that she wants to see how things go with Alex instead. Unfortunately, she does it in REALLY clumsy fashion, talking a lot about how Alex ticks off boxes and hits requirements for her. It sounds less like she's looking for love and more like she's going through a shopping list – which isn't really irrational or anything. She's at a phase in her life where she wants certain things and increasingly has a timeline – but to talk about it during a break-up in such accountant-like terms can come off cold, like you're less interested in a person and more in the concept of a person.
It's enough that Johnny marches off elsewhere to talk to the wisest relationship sage on the beach: Logan. (*double-takes, lifts glasses to take closer look*) LOGAN!? Anyways, Victoria hunts him down and takes him back to finish their conversation, tossing in a little shade at Logan in the process by saying something about how she heard he had a rough return. GIRL, YOU ARE IN THE MIDDLE OF A MESSY BREAK-UP YOURSELF – NOT THE TIME TO BE SMUG!
Meanwhile, Alex, Tyler and Faux Thor finally get to make their way to the beach and continue their potential connections with Victoria, Brittany and ... not sure why Faux Thor is still here, but I'm not upset about it. During his time at the Estates of Sadness, he quietly became all the ladies' wine buddy, which feels like the ultimate compliment.
So that's that, right? A new normal has been established, the break-ups are all done and everyone's back where they belong? ABSOLUTELY NOT – because Tyler randomly gets pulled aside, not by Shanae but by Jessenia. Didn't see that particularly coming – and neither did Brittany, who's fuming. The only person probably fuming more: Andrew, who just got broken up with just to see his new girlfriend run off with his old girlfriend's new guy. No matter who he's dating, apparently they'd rather date Tyler. Anyways, though, what an intriguing cliffhanger of a situation to end the episode on!
Or ... uh, not. Apparently we have a few more minutes to waste, so Tuesday's episode just kind of piddles away with Victoria chatting with Alex and talking more about how much he's everything she wants on paper. But maybe Johnny's who she wants as a person? I don't know; as much as the episode tries, it seems pretty obvious where her decision's landed and it's all rather drama-devoid, a fizzled-out way to end the episode.
Then again, I can't imagine a more fitting way to bring Casa Bachamor to an end: a big ol' nothingburger.
As much as it is a gigantic cliché to say that one has always had a passion for film, Matt Mueller has always had a passion for film. Whether it was bringing in the latest movie reviews for his first grade show-and-tell or writing film reviews for the St. Norbert College Times as a high school student, Matt is way too obsessed with movies for his own good.
When he's not writing about the latest blockbuster or talking much too glowingly about "Piranha 3D," Matt can probably be found watching literally any sport (minus cricket) or working at - get this - a local movie theater. Or watching a movie. Yeah, he's probably watching a movie.