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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Matt finally does the right thing on The Bachelor

Illustration for article titled Matt finally does the right thing on The Bachelor
Photo: Craig Sjodin/ABC
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Like a mythical hydra—or the movie Heathers—if you lop the head off of one mean girl Bachelor contestant, another will almost immediately rise to take her place. We were all enjoying a blessed .05 seconds of Anna- and especially Victoria-less bliss, when MJ, who honestly at one point seemed like a cool girl, reared her ugly head against Jessenia, even though she’s insistent that she’s preaching harmony and “leads by example.”

But first, let’s return to the blissful early moments of the episode, wherein Anna and Victoria got booted from the show. After all the drama, it was kind of beautiful. Hopefully Anna learned her lesson, but judging from Victoria’s exit, she has not learned a damn thing. Undoubtedly the producers enabled Victoria to stick around to add unnecessary drama to the rose ceremony—but it was still extremely gratifying to witness. Nobody hugging her goodbye, not even Matt, followed by the absolutely gleeful toast about turning a new page in the house one she was finally gone. So long, Queen Victoria, somehow you believed you brought joy to the house when actually everyone was the most joyful when you actually left. Already dreading your return on Women Tell All.

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Matt was getting a lot of grief for not being much of a leader in the house, almost as ineffective as Pilot Pete in weeding out toxicity and keeping law and order. So his no-nonsense, getting down to brass tacks approach this episode was downright refreshing. He was still compassionate about it; maybe too compassionate, although it was extremely generous of him to tell Anna that she was not a horrible person. But it was glorious to watch Victoria try to pass off calling Ryan a “ho” as being “taken out of context,” and having Matt return with, “What context would calling somebody a ho be acceptable to be taken in?” Exactly! Yes, from the looks of things, the drama in the house hasn’t dissipated one iota, but nevertheless, having Victoria gone is a win. Unfortunately, I’m sure she’ll get some dumb sponsorship or influencer deal straightaway. But please, don’t put her on Paradise and have her mess up everything there while pleading innocence the whole time. She might be the most self-delusional person this show has ever had on, which is saying something. She started off the episode by talking about hazing, for god’s sake.

It is too bad that we can’t all enjoy the Victoria-less view, but apparently the Bachelor producers have to stoke the drama fire from somewhere. Yes, it sure seemed like a lot of the women were frantically apologizing to the newer contestants in a desperate attempt not to get sent home. Leading to Jessenia pointing out that MJ has not apologized for her own behavior, instead going on and on about the defamation of her character when it’s not quite apparent what kind of character she has to defend. We’ll see how that all plays out next week; hopefully Matt’s ability to cut out the evil toxicity in the house will continue.

Oh yes, and there were some dates this week, besides all the intra-contestant drama. Rachael got the dreamiest package imaginable—a free shopping spree—which only made the group date of doing farm work even less glamorous by comparison. Matt seems to actually have strong connections with a lot of these women so far; he oddly couldn’t seem to stop kissing Pieper on the group date. Which makes you wonder why he’d blow a one-on-one on 21-year-old Kit, who for the first time hinted at her privileged life as the offspring of famous designer Cynthia Crowley. Their cookie date was cute, but their connection still seemed weak compared to the ones Matt already has with Bri, or Chelsea, or Michelle, to name just a few.

So, a lot of fun options still in play, but unfortunately it looks like the drama continues. Somehow flight attendant Serena is going to go after Katie, the one person in the house she should be thanking for getting rid of Anna and Victoria in the first place? Katie starts this episode by saying, “If you’re going to be a mean girl, I’m going to call you out.” Katie, we are so grateful.

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Stray observations

  • Abigail’s candid revelations to Matt about the possibility of her future children also being deaf, and her father’s desertion of her family, were just heartbreaking. Glad she got the rose from that night.
  • We got rid of five women this week, and it still just seems like a ton are left, with half the season left to go.
  • Next week: Yay, the return of former Bachelorette contestant (and Matt’s real-life best friend) Tyler C! Boo, the return of formerly Never-Been-Kissed Heather for some reason!
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Gwen Ihnat is the Editorial Coordinator for The A.V. Club.

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