The big news this episode: NO CHILDREN WERE MENTIONED. NOT EVEN ONCE.
I’ve got a theory: that’s because no-one whose one-on-one time we witness is seen by Matty as a viable womb unit.
But first. If you remember, last episode, Tara speculated that Leah’s skeletons were going to come dancing out of the closet, and boy did they ever.
And now the girls are here dancing on her grave, talking about how great it is without her, and now everything is ‘roses and butterflies’ here in the mansion.
Little do they know three girls are walking away with only butterflies to show for their trouble this episode. It comes off as harsh, but our last Bachie Georgia Love also basically took a scythe to her crop of suitors once she realised who was a waste of time around this point in her season.
Anyway, it’s time to announce a single date! Still lots of girls who have yet to get a single date, so this is an important one. Alix reads out the clue: ‘It’s time for a breath of fresh air – let’s get lost in the wilderness’. We find out later that some of the girls interpreted this as them all going camping with Matty, which is weird because ‘this is a single date card’ is literally the first thing Alix says. Anyway. It’s Elora! Jen is sour about this, because Jen could find a way to be sour about the way another girl blinks. All the girls are a bit openly upset her getting a second date, including awesome cop Michelle, who tells her ‘I’m not happy with that…I’d like to be happy for you, but I’m not’. Elora feels bad but it’s Matty’s choice, as he so vehemently stated last week. One of the girls screams ‘Tell Matty I’m still alive!’ as she leaves, which seems pettily appropriate.
I don’t even know how to talk about Elora and Matty’s date. They keep mentioning their connection and chemistry, but it’s a whole lot of tell, and not a lot of show on that front. They’re in the Blue Mountains and hike down to the Jellybean Pool at Glenbrook Gorge, and I’m slightly surprised no-one I know is there. No, it’s just Elora, Matty, the camera crew, a picnic, and a yet-to-be-inflated swan. I want to heap shit on Matty as he teases Elora about wearing boots that she can’t hike in, but given she brought her swimmers and thought she was camping, she can own her footwear choices there. As they sit down to chat, they first must discuss Matty’s
owner sister. Elora was conscious she wanted to make a good impression, as ‘she is a part of you’.
Just going to leave this gif here and move on.
So anyway Elora must have slipped Kate the results of her fertility test or something, or else she was just rewarded for being a big fat dobber, because Kate had glowing things to say about her. Is he seeing Elora through sister-tinted glasses? They don’t seem to have any emotional connection at all. It is clear he’s attracted to her, and I’m sure he’s thought about whether she’d have one of those cute, swallowed-a-basketball pregnancies, but there’s just…nothing there in their conversations. None of the banter he has with some girls, and no particular exploration of how their relationship might look in more than a week.
As for the rest of their date, Matty tells us ‘I’ve blown up heaps of inflatables before’ which yeah alright mate, but takes forever to blow up the swan, which is not a series of words I’d anticipated typing today. They do eventually they hop in the water hole with the swan, because it’s not a Bachie date without water. They’re very touchy-feely and look, I have absolutely not a doubt in mind that he wants to bone her. As a prelude to pashing, Elora tells us that ‘He did the eye thing that he does’ which I can only imagine is this:
I’m going to sum up their post-swim, cheese-n-wine chat with this extract:
‘I had a good day’
‘Yeah it’s been fun. Really fun’
She gets a rose for this sterling effort, and tolerating the fact that he leans left when he kisses (you can thank the awesome Jodi McAlister for noticing that, as I can now never forget it).
The show promoted OH MY GOD the drama this episode by showing Matty lingering at the door of his single date. Yep that’s right, they’re staying overnight. In separate cabins. She invites him in, telling the camera: ‘I mean my door’s open, haha’.
CUT TO THE NEXT DAY. Matty running. Not from anything, just athletically. No, of course he didn’t go in. He might be tremendously stupid, but he’s not going to do that when there’s cameras following them around.
The rest of girls are invited! What a jolly time for them, feeling like they’re crashing someone else’s date. And for exercise! Fuck that, hop back in the oversized cars, ladies.
Little did we know, Matty’s jog was a subtle clue as to today’s group date. It’s a compatibility test! With running. Why are the Bachies never sedentary? I would like a Netflix-based compatibility test, please.
Anyway. You get to a box. It’s multiple choice. If you choose the correct ‘Matty’ answer, you get to run to the next one. If you get the wrong answer, you have to wait it out with an egg timer before trying again.
Turns out the show doesn’t super care about showing us the right answers and therefore giving us any insight in to Matty, so we skip over the answers to questions like favourite film genre , your ideal Sunday morning, etc. He thinks it’s mandatory to order dessert, though. Presumably ‘babysitting your nephew’ is not part of the question ‘ How often do you think you should see your partner’s family?’, because the answer is ‘once a month’.
Tara: No way, my Mum’s a ledge
The real story here isn’t Matty having thoughts or opinions, but that Florence straight up doesn’t give a fuck about anything and just starts cheating as soon as she is alone at a box. And continues doing this until she wins. I think time alone with Matty is the worst prize of all, but honestly, if that’s what she wants, who cares about stupid Bachelor challenges? Get it.
She confesses this in their alone time (‘All’s fair in love and war, that’s what the girls always say’), and while he is flattered, he is also a bit mortified, as he is a pure bastion of morality who would never do something send his sister in to dig up shit on the 13 girls he’s dating simultaneously. He tells her ‘I like how honest you are’ after she gives him a list of all the times she has cheated in various games (never on people, though). He somewhat reluctantly gives her a rose and they have a pash. I think Florence is absolutely hilarious and provides us with some precious reactions gifs but once again…this isn’t going anywhere. She’s too ‘out there’ for this bland vanilla ice cream man who thinks sports are a substitute for personality.
That night at the cocktail party, we pick up a bit of a thread that’s been running throughout the episode – Sharlene (‘who?’, I hear you ask) doesn’t feel like she’s been seen. And hoo boy, instead of handling this in a normal way to get his attention (like Elise’s fishing game), she just ends up in the world’s most awkward confrontation. She gears herself up to chat to him, wondering if she should open with a joke. Oh boy I hope she doesn’t plan in to go in to stand-up, because she interrupts his chat with Jen thusly: ‘I’m actually one of The Bachelorettes, I’m not the external caterer, but I would like to speak to you when you’re free’. He immediately knows he’s got some bullshit to deal with here, so Jen departs to go enjoy some wine time with Michelle, leading to the best line of the episode:
Jen: [referring to Sharlene embarrassing herself] ‘It actually hurts my soul a bit’
Michelle, staring in to her wine glass: ‘Come on, you don’t have one’
The confrontation with Sharlene is as awkward as you imagine. Sharlene tries to approach the conversation gently after the abrupt beginning, saying she feels left behind (as several of the girls, including Alix, have expressed to Matty), and asks from his own experience on the show if he has any suggestions on how to handle that. And very quickly, he decides to just bail. He thinks ‘what they have’ is lovely but doesn’t see it progressing in a romantic way. She gawps her way in to the ad break and when we return, it seems like she can only use the words ‘Yep. Thanks. Yep’. It’s like watching someone dissociate in front of your very eyes, as she returns to the group and loudly announces that she has decided to leave. I feel bad for her, but the delusions are very grand. In direct-to-camera, she extols on how he simply wasn’t the right guy for her, due to his disinterest in pugs (WHAT? Get in the bin, dude), martial arts and musical theatre.
Sharlene, I am sure the right guy is out there somewhere for you to find your white picket fence with. Matty seems like the kind of guy who would walk out of Grease and tell you musicals are unrealistic.
At the rose ceremony, OMG TWO GIRLS ARE GOING THIS EPISODE IS A SLAUGHTERHOUSE.
I’ve started to notice that Tara very frequently gets picked first, and this is the one thing I will congratulate Vanilla Bean on.
Departing tonight are Stephanie (…who?) and Alix. I’m afraid I picked last episode that she was not long for this world, but at least she’s walked out knowing an excellent shade of red lipstick to go with her continued reproductive autonomy:
Hmmmm so glad the makeup artist taught me about Russian Red and Implanon