Bumbling along with Bumble: The Tinder Trends Sequel

….that no-one asked for.

You’ve heard of Bumble, right? It’s kinda like Feminist Tinder, in that ladies have to make the first move to make contact when they get a match, or that match damn well disappears. The whole thing kinda freaks me out, because I already spend 100% of the time thinking I come off as too thirsty, but nevermind, I wasn’t there to make matches! I was there to collect some of that sweet sweet data.

This post is intended as a sequel to my Tinder Trends series, but particularly the epilogue where I examined age-related data. Unlike The Big Study, I only collected data on 100 profiles (as I was hoping to have it done around PAX, but then I came down with an almighty case of PAX pox and did not want to think about men or romance or having a body). I set the parameters the same as The Big Study, however, searching for men between ages 25-40 within a 50km radius. I  also collected a few extra data points that were of interest to me.

First things first! Bumble did not want me to be a cougar. Well, not so much…

chart

This is good, because I have spent enough time with men in their twenties to last two lifetimes! More than 50% of the men Tinder showed me were in the 25-29 age bracket, whereas 41% is a much more manageable number of men I almost certainly wouldn’t date unless I started to have some sort of emotional crisis. Thanks, Bumble. There is always the chance that Bumble’s user base just skews a little older, or that the men on there set their age preferences a little closer to their own actual age.

giphy (2)

chart (1)

What ho, 30-35 year old men. Why is is that you’re 12% more likely to mention your height (my old bugbear), than, say, what you’re looking for? Once again, the older cohort were WAY better at expressing this than the young dudes. One of the biggest changes is the drop in the youngest age groups even having a bio at all. On Tinder, over 70% of guys in the 25-29 age group had something – anything – in their bio. Even if it was rubbish. Even if it was a bunch of emojis (seriously, some of these dudes really need to reconsider the picture-is-worth-a-thousand-words thing). But in this set it was only 59%. And I gotta say – 41% not having anything to say? It’s not good enough.  In the current environment where women are having to think about sexual harassment and assault literally every day, men should consider themselves lucky that a woman might even consider going on a date with them without a full police check. If they’re not going to offer any information about themselves, then they shouldn’t be surprised when the inevitable future comes about:

wonder-woman-amazon-fights

In this dataset I also picked out what is actually a photo feature, but it it got thrown in there because it’s a Y/N rather than a numbers thing. If you put another person in your first photo….
giphy (3)

Don’t make it a magical mystery tour to find out which one you are! I came across a guy and ALL of his photos were group photos. No-one is matching with a dude just because he has a wide variety of friends who drink in a vast array of foreign locations.

chart (2)

Across the board, Bumble men actually slipped in to my cliches more firmly than Tinder men. There was a higher average number of travel pictures, of animal photos, SO many more gym selfies (HELLO older dudes who want to show off those gainz), and and a heck of a lot more bar photos. But additional cliches emerged quickly too, cliches that only emerged about halfway through my Tinder research so I didn’t have an opportunity to factor them in to my data. I live in Melbourne, so no great surprises that apart from weddings, there’s a lot of photo ops when you suit up to get wasted at the races.
races.jpg
Don’t put that photo on your dating profile you idiots

Guys also really want you to know they ride a motorbike. I don’t know. Judging by the age data it doesn’t seem to be linked with mid-life crises, motorbike dudes in my unfortunately vast experience just really. want you. to know. about their motorbike.

My new bugbear is the small child accessory! This is frequently accompanied by a vehement disclaimer that it’s not their child, but a niece or nephew. I’ve got a new idea! If you’re a parent, just disclose it. You don’t need a photo. It’ll make some nice content for your sparse bio. If you’re not a parent, don’t put a child in your online dating profile, unless you can also provide proof that their parents permit you using their kid in the pursuit of sex. And even then, probably don’t do it?

chart (3)

However, it’s not too prevalent. About ten per cent of profiles pulled out the small child accessory. About the same percentage of profiles that did not feature a single photo of the subject’s face in full.
damien
So what are the overall takeaways from this Bumble vs. Tinder exploration? Well, just putting the power in women’s hands to initiate communication might be a slight improvement on Tinder, stemming the onslaught of dicks that can be experienced on such a platform (I mean, I presume that happens. My experience on Tinder is generally of matches that never go anywhere, but when I was on there I also explicitly stated I didn’t want to see anyone’s penis in my bio). But it doesn’t follow that the pickings are all that much better. The data actually tracked very closely with Tinder, when it came to how many people had something to say for themselves, how many were annoying cliches, and how there was a lot of content that didn’t quite fit in to easy categorisation. Is it nice to know that this app was showing me people a little closer to my age? Yes, but that can be controlled with preferences.

Want to know what the main difference is? You can switch off horndog mode (which I did when PAX rolled around) and switch to Bumble BFF. It’s just intended for making friends. As someone who’s still finding her feet in a new city, and has travelled solo, this idea appeals to me way more than talking to strange men on the internet. But unless you think it’s okay to choose friends on appearance alone…

You need to have a goddamn bio.

The Bachelorette Australia Weeks 3 and 4: Taking Out The Garbage

Back at the start of the season I shared my impressions of some of the contestants. There’s so much filler in the early parts of the season that I only picked a select few to discuss – Ryan, The Interrupter, Jarrod, The Keenest Bean That Ever Lived, and Sam, Who Calls Them Cans.

Oh boy, did the turn out some peaches. Sam decided to make best buddies with fellow dillweed Blake, who I would feel comfortable in referring to as ‘this season’s Jen’, except with more floral urination (I’ll return to that one). Sophie wasn’t afraid to call out Sam on the incident when his verbal diarrhoea led to him repeatedly let Sophie know he was looking down her dress. He excused this as an attempt to use humour to connect with her even though it wasn’t, y’know, at all funny. Despite his many attempts, the only thing funny about Sam is his delusional hairdo. Nonetheless, our Queen, who can be a bit awkies herself, seemed happy to move on from this. After all, Sam was owed two single dates after his first night Double Delight rose triumph (still never got any word on whether this meant he was safe from elimination until he got them both). I suspect she was just biding her time, however.  Because when Single Date #2 came around in Episode 8, it was nothing more than an opportunity to insert his foot directly in to his mouth. The guy tried to mansplain the music industry to Sophie Effin’ Monk. Boy you better stop, better run away.

mercy

She didn’t send him home directly from the stretch Hummer, as I would have. No, this arrogant twat, who walked away from the date with no kiss and no rose, was still oozing confidence going in to the rose ceremony. Then our queen racheted up the tension, sending her Chosen Fellas (new/old bloke Stu, Jarrod, James, and Apollo My Prince) out the of the ceremony, summarily dismissing Unsung Hero AJ so she could face down Sam and Blake, who had just recently been thinking they could perhaps be numbers 1 and 2 in the finale. Briefly quizzing them both on their intentions, she sent Sam home, saying it wasn’t quite right.

You can say it, Sophie. Sam ‘isn’t quite right’.

Let’s talk about Unsung Hero AJ here for a second, because he played a very important role. This chef rolls in as one of The Old Blokes and he’s very tall but bald and  moderately fine-looking and just seems like a pretty nice dude with no chemistry with Sophie. But oh, did he provide her a service. It was under the guise of ‘not ruffling feathers in the house’, but he totally threw a spelling bee (ugh, don’t ask) in episode 6, spelling ‘cuisine’, ‘quizine’ (that sounds like a horse tranquiliser bro). What did this mean? Ryan wins and gets to spend some alone time with Sophie.

They didn’t make him go through this in his school uniform, unfortunately.

Screen Shot 2017-10-16 at 8.50.19 pm

(this is a bad screenshot but I don’t want to look at his face for longer than necessary)

So lately this fucknugget has been talking about how he doesn’t really want a woman who swears. I’ll leave my general response to that to the immortal words of True Blood.

tumblr_m65qdib2KE1qa2ovmo1_r1_500

Sophie, much like myself and bonafide smart person Stephen Fry, enjoys a bit of a swear. She thinks truck drivers could learn a new turn of phrase from her. He’d also said last time they hung out (and, in fact, the first time they met), that he wants ‘a girl who takes care of herself’ aka a perma-hottie. Sophie just wants to dag out in her trackies tbh (god is it any wonder we love her?). So she knows, in her heart of hearts, that she’s not the right girl for Ryan and he needs to go find someone else, preferably an inanimate sex doll that he can treat like the wardrobe he destroyed in week 2’s Man Test (yeah sorry I can’t even touch that bullshit representation of gender roles, I’ll just say, if you need things fixed around the house, consider paying a professional? People do those things as a legitimate trade.  Help stimulate the economy by not entering a committed relationship only to save a few bucks).

ryanrealgirl

Yes, this is acceptable

So Sophie knows it’s time to take out the trash, but in the end she boots him because he doesn’t actually….like her? And she has a bunch of people here who do? He says that he would be willing to have a public relationship (to be clear mate you’re on a reality show right this second, and went through a whole casting process to be here) if he thinks she’s ‘worth it’. And it’s like watching that lightbulb moment go off over every woman’s head, when they realise it’s time to get rid of the fuckboy. As he doubles down on the looking good, and the swearing (even mentioning that he himself works on a construction site and ‘you can imagine what that’s like’), she tries so hard to make him see that he just wants everything that’s the opposite of her. So..she sends him off. And he has a mini tantrum, bringing his own little potty mouth out to play. Sophie’s shocked enough to break that fourth wall like it’s chipboard.

Screen Shot 2017-10-16 at 9.36.18 pm

And so Week 3 drew our time with Overly Aggressive Ryan And The One Time I Have Not Been Attracted To A Kiwi Accent to a close.

buhbye

So as of now, Sophie has recycled her two biggest pieces of trash. But we need to talk about Jarrod. And we can’t talk about Jarrod without talking about Blake.

I can’t type his name without getting this in my head by the way.

Congratulations Blake, you’ve officially brought me back around to looking on Jarrod more favourably. Like, not a lot – I’d probably still consider pissing in his pot plant if I had the imagination for such things – but bullying people is a great way to make people feel more warmly towards the victim. The plant thing? Cheesy, thirsty, and dumb, and I’d want to urinate on it after the second time it came up in conversation, third at best. But in Week 4 there was a sleepover night that made it clear that Blake is nothing more than a bog-standard schoolyard bully. Sophie asked the boys’ families to send in something from their childhood, and unfortunately there was no scandalous ballet shoes moment. However Jarrod received his childhood blanket, bringing up an emotional reaction as he remembered family members who have passed. You can only imagine how this was improved by Blake sniggering and sniping away about how it’s only a blanket. I actually wanted to give Jarrod a high five when he told him to shut up.

Guess what men? It’s not fucking cute to shame other men for having actual emotions. You are toxic masculinity embodied, Blake, and I need you to do something for me:
lemonhgrab

Jarrod, you little thirst monster, I need you to do a few things. I need you to learn some basic mathematics. I need you to never say the words ‘pot plant’ ever again. And just chill the hell out, you’re turning in to a beetroot more and more every episode and I’m worried you’re going to have an aneurysm.

Screen Shot 2017-10-15 at 10.08.55 pm

Stop doing….all of this.

Even as the world proves to us that men as a whole are basically garbage, at least we have one thing. We have Apollo and puppies.

puppies

I’ve decided to stop occupying the corporeal realm and live inside this post.

To finish off, a couple of updates!

  • This week I should be back to livetweeting Sophie’s adventures, unless life is completely unfair.
  • I may do a separate post for this, but next week if you’re in Melbourne you can come see me at PAX! My bestie has somehow roped me in to a panel on Bad Dating Sims, I don’t know how I allow these things to happen. I’m currently looking at a Tinder Trends follow-up to line up with that, although doing the data collection for that may depend on me not actually spending all my nights livetweeting telly.

 

The Bachelorette Australia 2017 Week 1: Toxic Masculinity Ruins The Party Again

assholes

Okay, to be fair, that was just a Murderino reference, and I don’t think anything’s truly ruining this party. I think Sophie Monk is having the goddamn time of her life and she will sass anyone who tries to bring her down and/or bring a man bun to the party.

But oy.

There are a few corkers in this bunch. I’m not wasting my time talking about Blake – just go back and read anything I said about Jen or Leah on The Bachelor if you want a rant on cartoon villains. No, this is about men who I think have actually revealed something of themselves (creative editing nothwithstanding). Some of them started strong in episode one and then quickly devolved in episode two. But first let’s start with the guy who was a clear d-bag from the start – Ryan.

This guy is just aggressive. Every woman I spoke to after this episode agreed that this man has some form. A prematurely greying Kiwi 26 year old construction foreman, he doesn’t seem to have a lot of respect for women, particularly Sophie. He tells us: ‘My ideal woman, she’s gotta look after herself. She’s gotta be respectful, she’s gotta have a great smile, good laugh, funny, and charismatic, and have that sponatuity [sic] that I’m looking for in a woman’. I’ll note two things here:
1) He certainly didn’t mention familiarity with the English language
2) How many of those things do you think he ticks off himself?
The first thing he asks her upon meeting her is why her past relationships have failed. He negs her on various things including her taste in pop music, creepily licking his lips as he supposes allowed that he might be able to change her taste (Sophie: ‘Yeah, right’). She seems to see right through him, sending him away from the red carpet pretty quickly, but he’s not quite done for the night. As Sophie prepares to kick off the cocktail party with a speech, he drags her off as soon as she opens her mouth to check that she is ‘there for the right reasons’. Ryan. You’re the one that needs to answer that question, not her. It’s a blessing that he gets minimal screen time in episode 2, as I feel some pretty violent urges towards this guy.
punch

 

Jarrod made a minor impression in episode one, another Gimmick Guy inviting Sophie to squash grapes with him, as he runs a vineyard. This whole vineyard thing is a bit odd. He says to Sophie at the first cocktail party that he finds women act differently towards him – aka keener – when he mentions the vineyard, but he makes the damn thing about 50% of his personality on the show and mentions it constantly. Anyway, Jarrod makes a damn good impression on the first single date with Sophie. For some unknown reason they’re walking on a highwire – given Sophie hates heights, I think we can pretty much put the nix on the idea that the Bachies organise or even have any input in to their own dates. Jarrod’s not much of a fan of heights himself, but when Sophie damn near shits herself, this former army man goes in to cool, calm, and collected mode, and gets her through it. He had the entirety of Twitter eating out of his hand, even though he pulled out the ‘treat a woman like a Queen’ line and appears to be a terrible kisser who made me recoil from my television (it’s possible Sophie is also a terrible kisser, but time will certainly tell on that one).

So how did this guy stuff it up? By going….intensively possessive and weird. Firstly he returns to the house to give a monologue instructing the other men on How To Date Sophie Monk, and I kind of wish it was all terrible instructions so I could pretend it was sabotage. At the cocktail party he argues with the other men on his determination to pull Sophie aside to thank her for their date. I get both sides on this one – he already has a rose, so he needs that time the least. On the other hand, all’s fair, etc, etc. But firstly, he yells a classic version of the old ‘not here to make friends’ chestnut, by telling the boys that he doesn’t want to marry any of them (do you want to marry Sophie? You’ve gone on one date! And the name of the game is that she’s also dating the rest of them…). And next he gives her a pair of uggboots, causing some minor drama after Blake had already given her a pair on the first night. I mean, points to all these boys for knowing the way to the heart of a bogan,  but Jarrod…

chill.gif

Sam came in strong with an intro utilising three adorable nephews boasting about how Sam sometimes takes them to Target to try on bras (??? can I blame Safe Schools on this?). During the initial cocktail party, somehow we travelled back 16 years to when the walk-off in Zoolander was a fun, current reference. Sam made an appropriate spectacle of himself and gamely took part in a concessional undie run in the freezing cold. Sophie handed him the ‘double delight rose’, a new, fuzzily-defined thing entitling him to two single dates.

Within 5 minutes of episode two starting, he is champing at the bit. The first date of the episode is announced and he’s ready to stand, hoping Sophie will ‘stop playing around with him’. I’m gonna give him the benefit of the doubt and say he’s probably not thinking too tactically (why are you in a rush, dude? Surely not having one of your dates blown straight away is a good thing?), he’s just keen for a change of scenery. No-one’s on this show to hang around with blokes all day. When another date comes up, he’s still keen as a bean, basically yelling to the camera ‘I want my date! I want my date!’. But no, he doesn’t want to be on a group date. Too bad, you’re on it. And…it’s gross. Around episode two on the Bachies is time for a photo shoot, and this time it’s ‘famous couples of [fictional] history’. He’s playing Robin Hood to Sophie’s Maid Marian, and he cannot stop himself from looking down Sophie’s dress and commenting on her breasts, loudly announcing ‘I just looked at Sophie’s cans, sorry!’. Is it possible his mental age is lower than those infamous nephews? Who told you to openly ogle a woman, Sam? It makes Sophie so clearly uncomfortable, pulling a face and saying ‘You’re not meant to tell me’ and ‘Can you please not say that’ (and laughing, because that’s what women have to do diffuse tension) when he makes a second comment. She’s trying so hard to be professional on this shoot while this guy is acting like a lech. It’s a good thing that James is also in their scene, and he’s able to rebuke Sam a little bit while making Sophie laugh. Based on her comments – particularly noting his negative, jealous comments about James – I think Sophie has seen right through Sam, and probably walked out of that shoot to get some very specific feedback from the producers on the particulars of that double delight rose.
Sam, I was rooting for you. I figured at some point during the show, they’d get rid of your ridiculous man bun combover, and you’d be a generally reasonable human being. Who would have known, that the guy who was noted with surprise that there wasn’t ‘at least one douche’ on the first night, actually turned out to be the greatest douche of all? Turns out we were dealing with a ‘he who smelt it, dealt it’ situation.
rose

Also if you don’t think Apollo whose real name may or may not be Jake is a beautiful perfect angel then I don’t want to talk to you.

As should be clear from this post, no, I am not recapping this season! I just have a lot of feelings and wasn’t able to livetweet this week. Want to catch up on the events of the week? Check out Smart Bachie Person Jodi McAlister’s caps at BookThingo. Or if you’re just in it for the lols, Sinead Stubbins is back in the Power Rankings game over at Junkee, and I cannot freakin’ believe I didn’t know about the hilarious Punkee video recaps before a few weeks ago.

The Bachelor Australia 2017: Episode 16 (The Finale)

Did you notice the Baby Creeper aspect has been pushed in to the background over the last few episodes?

Well, that was your first clue about what was going to happen tonight.

(Well, no, it was about your 78th clue as I picked her for the final two as of the first episode)

You may recall – if you don’t, I have a handy dandy recap for you – that in episode seven, Laura told Matty she didn’t see herself being ready to have kids for another ‘five or six years’. Given she’s probably about to be spending plenty of time with a toddler and a newborn baby, I reckon you can guarantee she’s off to get a fresh Implanon installed, too.
better late
Anyway, it’s pretty significant that they stepped well away from that narrative once Laura became the clear frontrunner.

Look, we all knew what was happening here. The Daily Mail made sure of that, and while the show already did a pretty crappy job of telling the story of Matty and his second-place, it would have been an outright failure if there’d barely introduced his winner until the same episode her Dad appeared. Just sayin’. Let’s have a look at how they framed this inevitability.

At the final two, it’s important to contrast the two ladies left. After all, heaven forfend Australia notice that he’d probably be happy with any generically nice, white girl with hair in some shade of bronde. So Elise gets the ‘down-to-earth’ edit, where she is all warmth and smiles the girl who will fit nicely in to his life even though she lives in South Australia and Laura lives around the corner. Laura, by the way, seems perfectly down-to-earth too, but instead she gets the confident career lady edit, even though she cracks under the slightest pressure.

It’s used in two ways – to make us think Elise will win, and to make sure we know Elise will be okay. Firstly, she gets along with Matty’s Mum and brothers (there is no Tyrant Kate to be seen because he eggo is preggo again, although apparently she’s messaged them this morning, presumably saying ‘GRILL ‘EM TOMMY’) like a house on fire (Matty says ‘It’s almost too perfect’ hint hint). Boy does Matty’s brother have some questions for her, though. They edit it to look like he basically opens up his line of questioning with ‘Have you had many lovers in the past?’ and Elise chooses to answer talking about her two ex-boyfriends, rather than response I personally would have chosen:
TOMMY

Seriously though Tommy, what’s up your dick with that question?  Umm anyway the rest of his line of questioning allows her to once again reiterate for the umpteenth time this episode how compatible they are because of how much they like not being inside and how much they enjoy physical exertion. And this is double edged sword for Elise, or at least the show wants us to believe that . She would fit nicely in to his life. His family likes her (his Mum fucking loves her). They can teach their tanned kids hockey and pick leeches off each other on hikes in the deepest wilderness. But also: what’s that exciting about someone who’s exactly like you? There’s no challenge. That’s a reason not to pick her, yes, but they could have just focused on the fact that these two have zero chemistry and just come off as good friends who pash sometimes.

In their solo day, taking place on a superyacht and a private island (so now we know where the budget for the rest of the series went) they want us to know Elise will be okay. Even though he wrings a few more declarations of love out of her, she also reiterates that she knows ‘it might get taken away from me, but I’m glad I’ve done it, because I’m really happy’. In her post-dumping to-camera and this heartbreaking interview after the finale, it’s pretty clear she quickly changed her mind on that, and it was just the confidence and high of love talking.

emma

Laura pretty much screws the pooch with the in-laws. And I think at this point I realise this why it is that I like Laura – we are not dissimilar. Because damn is she a nervous talker. One question down and they know her entire LinkedIn profile and then some.

real vomit

And then she straight up cries at Matty’s Mum because she gets a bit worked up. I’ve been there before. It feels like total garbage. It’s not just emotion – it’s nerves and anxiety and a million other things and you feel the need to apologise because you’re not usually like this, dammit. So even though she’s talking about something quite nice – her love for Matty – sometimes you’ve just been keeping your cool for too long and need to let it out.
sense
Lukily Matty’s Mum recognises this as a sign of the strength of her genuine feelings and not that she’s an overly-emotional weirdo.

I continue to lack any appreciation for Tommy after he basically tells Laura that Elise is better suited because she fucking likes camping or whatever, Laura then needs to jump to her own defence, talking about how she’s done heaps of backpacking, she’s ‘no-fuss, not precious, not a drama queen’ and of course someone in this fucking family thinks that’s ‘awesome’. This obsession with women being ‘low maintenance’, when Matty is the most fucking manicured, bleach-teeth, perfectly-abbed guy on television, is hypocritical and exhausting.
lemongab

Their solo date is full of loving sick on each other – in a lake, on a gondola in the rain – while the service industry employees of Thailand and an elephant look on.

elepahy

Weird that they invited Akoulina back.

Like I just want to get on with this because it’s nearly midnight so basically their date is full of a lot of laughter and Matty’s patented Fuck Eye.

Suddenly it’s doomsday. Everyone’s melting in their suits, Laura gets frocked up in a white top and skirt – all the better to show off her abs – and Elise looks stunning in gold (for the second episode running – I’m glad to costume department liked her, at least). Matty positions himself between two golden elephant statues that are surrounded by pink petals.
extra
Old mate’s brought a ring along, too. Over the last few days there’s been a story going around that he proposed and the girl turned him down, which was a good way to create any dramatic tension here.

They’re transporting the girls via boat and I start dreading the indignity of stumbling off a boat in heels while you’re off to get your heartbroken, but a strapping gentleman is kind enough to carry them off the boats, which is a bit fabulous, actually.

The first girl to arrive is always the dumpee, and no-one’s particularly surprised when it’s Elise. But oh, she’s so excited and hopeful. It’s awful to watch. It’s mostly treated in the kindest way possible – no fakeout like Georgia gave him, the gut-punch that started us on this whole sorry journey. Although he does tell her ‘I’ve realised that we’re so similar in so many ways, and I love that about you’, which is a great way of really saying you’re a bit up yourself. She does an amazing job at saving face in front of him, wishing him the best, but she only gets to walk away as far away as necessary before she starts crying.
wilf'

Matty relocates himself to a colourful rug at the end of a rose-strewn path to greet Laura. Laura has told Osher ‘I’m ready to find out where I stand, whether it’s good or bad’ and it turns out she was deadset convinced it was bad. Matty greets her with a broad grin and sighs, to which she replies ‘it’s okay’. She looks like she’s going to vomit or cry or both, interrupting his speech with ‘It’s okay, whatever it is, it’s okay’ and just generally acts like she’s lost until he finally spits out that he loves her. So it’s actually pretty nice to be able to see these kids finally express their feelings for one another. Also he pops the ring on her right hand (god, it’s a risky move giving jewellery to a jewellery designer) so presumably she’s got a bit of time before she needs to start worrying about getting knocked up.

Put out your hockeysticks for Elise, folks.
hockey

 

 

The Bachelor Australia 2017: Episode 15

Oh god, where to start? The anger, it’s too fresh.
justice

And it’s not just that I was wrong with my predictions. It was so sad to see wonderful Bogan Queen Tara heartbroken tonight. Not really because she’s not going to be with Matty – personally I’d prefer no-one ended up with Matty – but because he’d led her to believe she’d finally found someone who doesn’t think she’s Too Much. So mostly I hate that this precious cinnamon roll may think she ever needs to make herself lesser to be desirable to a nation of milquetoast boys.

donthcange

My main hope at this stage is that Celebrity Bogan Queen Sophie Monk will pave the way for a Bachelorette as charming, lively, and unfiltered as Tara.

Let’s go back to the start. This week’s first date goes to Laura. The folks at Destination Wollongong are stoked that this date takes place in the Northern Illawarra. Heck knows the timeline for this date. They start out driving over the Sea Cliff Bridge, and this is my home area so I’m wondering how the hell they got that sucker empty. Either this is the legit crack of dawn, or they somehow managed to close the bridge for filming. Seems a bit over-the-top. Anyway. They make their way to the elegantly named Bald Hill. Only one thing happens at Bald Hill, and that’s skydiving. Laura’s generally got the more tame dates, so apart from the previous group date where they jumped out of a plane, I’m not really sure she has a leg to stand on when she says ‘I’m starting to get a little concerned that he wants to throw me off and out of things’.
Anyway she’s really excited! She loves things that push her out of her comfort zone. It’s an attitude that she has to carry with her to winey cheese time, for which they must have returned to the mansion because there’s some serious Daytime! Nighttime! action. One nice thing that happens this episode, is that Matty commissioned a production assistant totally drew himself a new portrait of Laura to replace the First Date Monstrosity. Laura is delighted. Does it look a bit like Georgia Love? Maybe. But it’s not enough to deter her from forcefully ripping herself from her comfort zone, against the better judgement that has served her perfectly well all season long. Ah well, I said she’d need to go balls deep, and here it goes. This took her about 40 minutes to get out and nonetheless my typing probably missed some stuff:

‘You’re very unexpected… I came in to this with no expectations…I’ve been taken for six in this….*long pause*…yeah well, this is incredibly difficult, because I’ve never ever been in a situation where I’ll need to put everything out there and not get that back, and I know there is a very good chance that I will get very hurt in this… but I would prefer to get hurt and for you to know everything…I am utterly falling in love with you, I genuinely am. It is truly the best feeling in the world’

Look I’m gonna take a wild stab in the dark and say for the finale they’ll just choose the last two lines.

Prior to this, Matty had told us that despite his many repeated misgivings about her reticence, he was just gonna let her stay at the level of expression she was comfortable with tonight (and presumably dump her if she was not effusive enough). So we know it was on his mind. His response to her outpouring? ‘I didn’t expect you to say that’. Mate what the fuck were you expecting after your interrogation at hometowns?

rolleyes

Anyway they do some pashing and bantz to relieve the tension and apparently she still likes the first portrait, so I guess she really loves him (and, in fact, they make the new portrait face away as they’re kissing so I guess it’s haunted).
paurbibf=

I don’t know what to say about his date with Elise. There’s a steam train, it unfortunately doesn’t run anyone down. Did you know he and Elise had a ‘slow burn’? And she likes sports and the outdoors? That her family is ‘one he wants to be part of’ (because of Phil, obvs). There’s no new information here. He takes her camping so you know I think we can definitely vote for this as Worst Date Ever.

shurup

There’s another very eloquent confession, from Elise:
‘I don’t fall for people often, but I know when I do. Everything kinda makes sense. I kinda feel like yeah, since hometowns, it has changed…and I can see a future with us, and yeah, I am falling in love with you’

And he just nods in response and says ‘I didn’t know that’.call

Like he makes all the right noises after that, but Smart Bachie Person Jodi McAlister did raise the theory that possibly he sent Tara rather than Elise home at this point not because he likes Elise so much, but rather to spare Tara the hurt of being let down later in the game.

Let’s move on to Tara’s date though, because there was one fundamental difference to the other girls. And not just that she was orally ecstatic about every element. When she turns up to some docks to see Matty waiting, she exclaims: ‘Oh sick! Matty and a seaplane, my two favourite things’. She’s apparently never been in a seaplane before but given Matty lied about having been in a helicopter in episode 12 I think we’re all chill. They take the seaplane to a yacht because okay. He proves Troy right, he is a liar, because he says Tara’s family were nice at hometowns. He also repeatedly reminds us that he laughs all time with Tara, that he forgets the rest of the world exists, that he thinks their future would be so fun. Why you dump her then bro? Well, here’s a thought. As the serious part of winey cheesy time happens (Tara, who cannot resist commenting on anything including peacefulness, shrieks ‘ohhhh this is so pretty’ like a) Matty set it up himself and b) it doesn’t look the same as the hundreds of other couches and cheeseboards we’ve seen over the season), Tara first stresses about being too full-on for other people. Which, yes, I, an introvert, could only handle her in small doses, but she is still a perfect angel. She then tells him ‘I really really like you, and I can see myself falling in love with you, so soon’.

So soon.

So look, I like the ‘she was sent home to protect her beautiful heart before they jet off overseas’ theory. But Matty is a garbage person, so I truly believe he went down his list of L-bombs and realised there was one missing.
ticktic

So, back at the mansion of awkwardness and sobriety, Matty tells us he feels terrible – he has feelings for and sees a future with all of them – and Osher turns up to provide some highly unnecessary Rose Maths. Matty picks Laura first, and then Elise.
Matty, I’ve got two things to say to you:
taras
wrong

RIP Bogan Queen.

The Bachelor Australia 2017: Episode 13

As I know I will not be getting Thursday’s episode up in a timely fashion (not to worry, I’ll tell you now there will be some awkward chats then Florence is going home), I thought I’d try to power through Wednesday night’s episode. Even though Channel 10 is airing the terrible Dirty Dancing remake, and I’m submitting myself to it for the second time in a month. It’s making me so angry. Let’s fuel that in to some Bachie coverage.

Channel 10 came out of nowhere to promote this as Hometown Week. As I outlined in the last recap, there’s always four girls for hometowns, which meant two girls had to go home tonight. I’d already predicted that Elora and Cobie would go home next, but I didn’t get the order quite right, so I guess I don’t quite get to indulge in my favourite activity.

But first, we must swim through an ocean of awkwardness and James Blunt.

Elora, Tara, Florence, Cobie, Laura and Elise turn up to someone’s yard. Osher doesn’t even have to invite them, they just know. He tells them that the winner of this date gets to spend more time with Matty and JAMES BLUNT. The reaction is not unlike this:bees
In the yard is a set of six podiums. Today’s first activity is framed as a ‘self-awareness’ exercise but it’s essentially just a way to try to make a bunch of essentially nice girls act mean. And while Elora is no Jen or Leah, her lack of self-awareness does essentially paint her as the villain. The girls are meant to cooperate to sort themselves in order of ‘most to least’ for questions like ‘Who is the most positive?’ ‘Who is the most down to earth?'”
It’s….excruciatingly awkward, to ask girls to rank themselves like this.

Important parts:

  1. Everyone knows Tara is the funniest because she is a queen.
  2. Tara tries to gently tell Elora that she should step down on the funny thing because she’s ‘more sexy than funny’. Tara of course being the proof that you can be both.
  3. Elora and Tara head straight to the top for ‘most down to earth’ and Florence asks Elora ‘What are you doing here?’. I genuinely find the whole thing so painful but…
    shde

Elora is many things but she is not exactly ‘down to earth’.

At the end of this round, Laura and Tara do not go through. I genuinely don’t think this is because they are not liked, but because they were most willing to take the fall to protect egos and avoid fights. Anything to make this segment shorter, basically.
4ae

The next segment is about dealbreakers! The two girls whose dealbreakers most align with Matty’s will go through. Also balloons.
allloon

Guess what Matty’s number one dealbreaker is? No, guess!

Yes you were correct, it’s ‘not wanting kids’. God these guys are just writing the blog for me at this stage. Anyway, the really shocking part was that Elora, who seemed to be tailoring her answers to appeal to Matty (duh), did NOT pick this as one of her dealbreakers.
idiot

If you need a babydaddy and you’re planning to steal Matyy J from Laura in the future, you should know his other dealbreakers are: cheating, lying, stubbornness, bad manners AND the tiebreaker dealbreaker ‘incompatible in the bedroom’, because not everyone can be the little spoon I guess.

Elise and Elora move on to the next round, and we’re not done with the awkward turtle I guess, because they have to write down their ideas on relationships and their expectations, and then read them out to Matty….at an altar. While the other girls watch on a TV screen. Shame none of them could livetweet, given that’s basically the only way to deal with watching this garbage show. Elise says all the right things and Elora just says all of the things. There are many words. All the girls say how ‘full-on’ and ‘intense’ it was.
lov you

To the surprise of no-one, he chooses Elise to Get Blunted. Matty decides to dress up like The Fonz to take his lady out for a dance.
Screen Shot 2017-09-06 at 10.42.13 pm

Eyyyyyy

Anyway apparently James Blunt ships it because he mutters ‘Go on then’ as he shuffles offstage.

Cobie finally gets another single date after the horse peen debacle. Matty really wants to test their romantic connection. Even predicting what I did, it was extremely clear that nothing short of a very drastic move here was going to see Cobie go home this episode. Matty has not been shy of his strong connection with the leading ladies, and nor has he been shy of sending people home.
Anyway, the first thing Matty does is hand her a bright pink stackhat (which she is thrilled about, because she is thrilled about everything, oh god it’s exhausting). It’s almost like….he was preparing her for something.
feelss.gif

But before she can face her emotions, she must face the world from a great height. She makes a great show of being scared of heights when they turn up at an elevated obstacle course, but then gets through it fine. They seem to have fun, and get a bit touchy-feely.

The clearest sign that this is her death knell is when they pull up afterwards and drink cider. CIDER. We are a wine family in this house, dammit! There’s not even any bloody cheese. It’s undignified. And then he makes her pour her heart out before he dumps her, telling her he doesn’t see it progressing beyond a friendship, like he always planned to. It’s really like kicking a puppy.

Back at the cocktail party, which, lacking a certain Bachie, is pretty much just the girls getting smashed in fancy dresses (and I have some serious resentment for what’s about to happen, because Tara my queen is looking STUNNING tonight), the girls are predicting what’s going to happen. Mostly, Cobie’s gonna waltz in any second with a rose. Instead, Osher turns up to rain on their parade. Ladies, Cobie and Matty had a great time today but they’ve decided to not-so-consciously uncouple. Also PS there’s a rose ceremony in five minutes.
bye
Elora is bummed because she was planning to talk to Matty before the rose ceremony, presumably hoping to perform some sex magic on him to convince him to let her stay. Buuuuuuut nope. He is quite apologetic to her, saying that he is not the guy who would ‘go on amazing adventures’ with her and he’s afraid if they were together he would ‘clip her wings’. Guys, it doesn’t take a genius to see the subtext here – she kept talking about wanting to travel the world, and didn’t show sufficient enthusiasm re: the motherhood question. Fundamentally, they weren’t very compatible. Elora has a case of the butthurts, but hopefully she recovers soon enough when she realises that travelling the world is way better than sprogging off kids for this dillweed forever,

Speaking of travel, my bestie is travelling interstate to visit me from tomorrow for a weekend of Book of Mormon and My Favorite Murder and delicious pastries, so it’s highly unlikely there’ll be a recap for episode 14 up promptly. I will aim to have it done by the end of the weekend.
byeee2

 

 

The Bachelor Australia 2017: Episode 10

witch

‘But I’m such a good cooooooook!’

Ding dong, the witch is dead. But it was some manufactured bullshit, and I want to talk about that, so I’m breaking with chronological format. We can come back to Elise and Matty’s Knight Bus snorefest later.

To trace this nonsense however, we do have to backpedal a little bit, to the group date. The date card reads ‘Let’s live every day like it’s summer’ and everyone’s invited. They go to the beach on a pretty garbage-looking day – and in fact it starts pissing down rain at the end. There’s a bunch of vaguely sports-related events – throwing balls around in a pool cleaning net, tossing thongs, and volleyball. I get the feeling the producers got drunk to come up with those ones. Sports-related dates always bring out the competitive side of the girls, and for Jen, watching paint dry could be a competitive sport. But a sudden rivalry appeared out of thin air for Jen this episode, and it had a mighty whiff to it.

bullsht

Lisa’s apparent crime, at the start of the date, was her youth and immaturity. Now Jen has never noted any problem at all with Lisa that we’ve seen, as she’s mostly been heaping shit on people like Simone (who she now seems chummy with now that her buddy Michelle has left, RIP). Jen gets more riled up over the group date, as her team (consisting of herself, Florence, Simone, Laura, and Elise) are smashed by Lisa, Elora, Tara and Cobie. At the end of the second round, with Jen and Lisa going head-to-head with a patriotic round of throwing-thongs-into-eskies, Jen declares Lisa to be her ‘target to sabotage’.

Shout out to my fellow 80’s movie fans, but every time any villain gets this thirsty, I just start thinking ‘you must chill!’
chill

Anyway, the reason Jen thinks Lisa Tucker must die or whatever comes out at the end of this segment. Apparently Lisa isn’t even attracted to Matty, and once Lisa’s team win the day, Jen starts pondering if Matty should be enlightened to this fact.

So, at the cocktail party, she tells him. She does not, as she tells the girls, ‘suggest he talk to Lisa’. She says ‘I think you need to be really mindful of Lisa. She’s said you’d been like a brother…she’s not that in to you’. Now, we saw on the group date that Lisa is in fact worried that she doesn’t feel as strongly about Matty as some of the rest of the group, so this is not entire bullshit. But when the other girls call her out for also saying that Lisa has purported that Matty is on the show the ‘keep his social status up’ (i.e stay in the public eye), it comes out that Jen allegedly overheard all these things being said when she was ‘in her room doing push-ups’. I’ll let Laura ask the pertinent question here:

Screen Shot 2017-08-24 at 10.52.44 pm

Could it be, say, a producer? My suspicion became very strong on this one after Jen stormed off in a huff after getting in to this spat (not even a particularly bad one, I must say). Jen is not willing to fight this one out because she knows there’s a fib in there that she can’t defend. But my suspicion that this is highly manufactured was seriously piqued as Jen cried to a producer (uttering the classic line ‘I’m THE game-changer, I’m not A game-changer’) – the producer knew she wanted to quit and encouraged her to do a foot stomp, asking her if she’d regret it if she left without giving the girls a piece of her mind.

Come on. This is some A-grade manufactured bullshit. The producers put her in this position to create more drama (and possibly bring Lisa back in to the game), and she just wants to quit before she gets busted for it on national television. Instead, she wants to create her own narrative. ‘I’m the girl that walked away from Matty J’

ohyeah

Feels appropriate to end that section of the recap at 666 words. Let’s move on. Other things happened!

Most importantly, our queen Tara was smashing a sausage (down boy) when Matty wanted to talk to her at the end-of-group-date victory barbie, so she just took it with her. And then pulled the ultimate power move of shoving it in his mouth.Screen Shot 2017-08-24 at 11.05.09 pm
I honestly can’t wait til Tara’s finale montage (she’ll come second, making her a shoo-in for Bachelorette), which will just be a series of shots of her swearing and eating phallic-shaped food.

I suppose we really must cover Matty’s date with Elise, which opened the episode. One of the first things he mentions to her was how great it was to meet her Dad. Phil does indeed seem like a legend and his wingman skills are clearly par excellence because hey, here’s Elise on a single date right now. But I’m really not sure about mentioning someone’s Dad straight up….and then shortly afterwards, upon visiting a florist, mentioning that your own Mum is pretty much the only woman you buy flowers for (err I guess he doesn’t technically pay for all those roses…). Matty, how about we just leave the parents out of all flirting endeavours entirely. She is however excited to receive a bouquet, as no man has bought her flowers again. When Matty expresses surprise, she cackles that ‘Yeah my last boyfriend was not ideal’  (I feel like American Bachie would have wrenched more from that). Anyway, he’s got Elise on a double-decker bus, presumably the one all those girls keep getting thrown under, something something lived in London. He’s showing Elise some of his favourite spots in Sydney, which seem to involve aforementioned florist, a….tennis club?…and finally a park. Mad tour bro. Elise is scared to let her competitive side out when Matty asks her to play some hockey – she’s a former Hockeyroo and presumably has scared some guys off before! Matty is in to it though, and they flirt and wrestle around on the ground while awkwardly not kissing for  while. The moment to kiss just passes….so many times.

tumblr_n5togoWhNL1smcbm7o1_400

I was really starting to worry about Elise. She seems very lovely, but after the cheek kiss debacle last week, and then this hesitation (he was definitely making the Fuck Eyes at her), I thought she was a goner. But it turns out all she needed was a bit more awkward chat in a hot tub on a boat. They have a pash and he gives her a rose.

Matty is very effusive in his praise of Elise in this episode, and talks a lot about the ‘slow burn’ situation that he sees as reflective of his journey with Georgia. My favourite smart Bachie person Jodi McAlister talked about this in her episode 9 recap, in a far more intelligent way than I can, but basically, that story, it doesn’t fly in Bachie land. The slow-burn doesn’t work in their storytelling mode. It stinks of retcon, but of course, this isn’t all happening in real time. If they needed to tell the Love Story of Matty and Elise, they wouldn’t be starting over halfway through the season. Matty and Georgia shared their first kiss in episode 6, and we’re at episode 10 here. No, this seems much more like a ploy to make the show a more genuine competition – Laura and Tara are the clear frontrunners right now, but we’ve still got a whole lot more show to get through.

And the question is, without the villain, where is the tension going to come from? The show now needs to start making drama from the actual relationships – with the girls left mostly being Nice Girls, the question is now ‘does she like him enough?’ ‘can she put herself and her feelings on the line?’ and, of course, the big one ‘IS SHE READY TO HAVE A BABY IN SPRING 2018?’.

Until next week, gird your uterus.

 

 

 

 

 

The Bachelor Australia 2017: Episode 9

Oh, you thought I was intolerant before? Well try adding illness and a bleeding uterus in to the mix. Fortunately the show didn’t give me too much to get mad about, so the recap isn’t just this:
gonegirl

(I wanted to post more gifs from this scene but I’d actually forgotten how brutal it was? Anyway period jokes are great the end)

Speculation is rife in the house that surely Michelle or Jen are due for a group date? Well, I don’t know about Jen. But Michelle, our lady of the law and general drinking-wine-in-a-go-go-cage goddess, is definitely due for some one-on-one attention! We haven’t had an opportunity to get to know her since her opening stunt of faux-arresting Matty, so all we really know if that’s she very good at commentary, for example telling Jen that she has no soul. Yes! Vote Michelle for the date!

Nah, it’s a group date. Matty invites Jen, Simone, Elise and Cobie on the date (Michelle: ‘I’m starting to think that Matty’s got no clue how to spell ‘Michelle”, preach), where he says he wants to ‘treat them to some home comforts’. Before they can all say ‘holy shit, we can have the internet? I can finally go on social media again?’, they turn up at a mansion to find out they’re going to cook the Bachie some food! Because motherhood tests as per last week aren’t quite enough. There must be wifey tests as well. Anyway Jen is stoked because she very humbly declares herself (repeatedly) the best cook in the house.
Spoiler alert, this is not Jen:

tumblr_mdpevnvbjg1rf1lwfo1_250

If Jen found this girl she would kill her and bake her in a pie.

Coming along to help with a family recipe will be one of each of the girls’ parents! Everyone starts crying, just in case you ever forget how socially isolated this gang are during the filming process. I can’t imagine what it would be like to go for weeks on end without my Mum replying to my texts with ‘ok’ and consequently wondering what I have done that was so horrible I don’t even get a smiley face emoji.

So, the crew includes Cobie’s Dad (she’s basically his mini-me an is described by Matty as like ‘his sidekick’) and Simone’s Mum (can’t cook for shit, bless her soul). Jen’s Mum is also there, and when she mentions she is tbh shocked and ‘a bit miffed’ that Jen hasn’t had a single date, Jen says a bunch if the girls who have had single dates have been ‘duds’, continuing to be blind to the fact that Matty not spending any sustained one-on-one time with her is the only thing keeping her in the competition.

Turns out Elise’s Dad is a damn good wingman. After Elise expresses her concern that she doesn’t know where she stands with Matty, Phil gently lays down the law his one-on-one chat with the Bachie. Basically he doesn’t want Matty to lead Elise on – whether he’s interested or not, he should let her know.

Can I please borrow Phil for my own romantic dilemmas? Just a little gentle intimidation, that’s the spirit.

Because it does the trick. Despite Jen’s outrage that this isn’t My Kitchen Rules and making the best dessert while putting other people’s food down doesn’t do the trick, Matty picks Elise for the one-on-one at the end of the group date. He makes some noises about while she may have felt like she was falling behind, she got his attention with the fishing gimmick. He gives her a rose and tells her ‘The more I get to know about you, the more time we spend together, the more excited I am’. But the clincher is, they only go in for a cheek kiss. And when we’re talking about Matty, well, a kiss on the cheek is pretty much the kiss of death.

050329c4db57fde23f68c0c32d095a4e.480x268x24.gif

It looks a bit like she might be getting next episode’s single date, however, so it’s nice he might give her a chance to turn it around.

Tell you who Matty loves to pash though? Our Bogan Queen, Tara. On their single date episode, he only stopped thinking of her as a kid when she started talked about how she wanted children. And now, as he turns up on a bloody camel to whisk her away on a single date, he’s describing her as ‘so beautiful inside and out – she’s so caring and so lovely’. Man, sounds almost like someone you’d want to mother your children…if you were in to that sort of thing.

Much like the hand-in-plaster date with Flo, btw, their departure on the camel is another boon for screencappers:
canel

Tara is not a huge fan of this situation

Worried she’ll sexually harrass him again, Tara is apparently not allowed any booze on this date (good to make her get used to sobriety for her pregnancy I guess), and is instead subjected to a variety of Moroccan teas before being terrified by a belly dancer with a snake. ‘Do we have to touch it?’ ‘You’re gonna keep holding that, aren’t you?’ are surprisingly things she does not say to Matty, but the dancer. She and Matty then try learn some belly dancing and it’s as hilarious as any time a white man tries to use his hips. Ah, cultural appropriation is a right laugh.

‘Serious chats’ time mostly involves some pashing, talking about their shared values and how Matty ‘couldn’t help but get really excited’ (down boy) when she started talking about family and kids. Tara seems to have a perfectly healthy self esteem for someone who is absolutely a top chick, but Matty is stuck on the idea that ‘I don’t think Tara knows just how special she is’. Certainly an ego the size of Jen’s is not that appealing, but not every woman is out there waiting to be rescued from her own insecurities. Anyway, I bet you saw this coming – she gets a rose.

It’s cocktail party time! Simone is sitting with Jen (sorry, I thought they hated each other? I can’t keep up) and Michelle. Simone is ‘shitting bricks’, while Jen wants to know if she has been ‘friendzoned’. She overuses this term incredibly in the episode, and it pissed a lot of people off on Twitter, because the phrase has such overtly problematic associations. But I can see how tempting it is for her to use it. When you’re in what is meant to be an explicitly romantic situation, it’s important for you to work out if they’re only looking at you as a friend, because in this context, it’s a bit of a waste of time if they are.

I mean, none of this has really been a waste of time for Jen because she has obviously achieved the notoriety that she wanted going in to it. But anyway, let’s continue with the farce that Jen is here for love. She’s decided to make him some desserts because Matty is a notorious sweet tooth and she is, like, such a fabulous baker. For some dumb-ass reason she cannot stop herself going in with the pass agg though, because that turned out so well for Sharlene. So when she starts saying he better appreciate it, because she spent all day in the kitchen, an eyebrow is raised. Nobody likes a nagging wifey. Then when he is clearly down with the sweets, her expression of relief and happiness is ‘I was bound to impress you eventually’ and he just goes in. He sees that while he’s a fan of the dessert, she thinks he’s not a fan of her.
*cough*
cough

To him, she says that she’s worried that he misconstrues her confidence and flirtatiousness, which doesn’t really fly with the ‘friendzone’ narrative she’s been creating, but somehow as the manipulator she is, she makes this some great show of vulnerability, which is exactly what Matty’s looking for. Looks like a temporary stay of execution for our only remaining villain.

Our final two at the rose ceremony are Elora and Michelle. Given Matty has had no excuse this episode to see that his attraction to Elora is purely physical, it’s no great surprise to anyone when it’s Michelle that is sent home.

Farewell, sassy ladycop. You deserved better.
salute

 

 

 

 

 

The Bachelor Australia 2017: Episode 8

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.

skeleton1

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.
skeleton2

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.

notdead

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.
brother
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:
ink

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’
patrick2
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
bitfhes

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.
florence

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’
duff

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:
lipstick
Hmmmm so glad the makeup artist taught me about Russian Red and Implanon

The Bachelor Australia 2017: Episode 7

Hello friends. Do you remember last week how I mentioned that I really enjoy being right? (as in correct, not being a Nazi, which is apparently a real thing people do these days).  Well, here I am to say: I knew Matty was a creep, and now thanks to this episode, you know it too.

patrick

This episode was a incredibly long beast though, so we’re gonna tackle this Buzzfeed-style with a Top 5 Reasons Matty is Terrible and I’m Ready For Sophie Monk Already, Thanks

1. He’s a bloody hypocrite
This episode Matty sent his sister in to the mansion. He trusts her opinions because she’s either his best friend, or one of his best friends, depending on who he’s talking to. There’s all sorts of weird framing around this (her eggo is preggo, so she won’t be able to meet the final two if they go overseas) but the crux of it is, she wants to see the weirdos he’s got in the house, and he’s heard there’s drama and wants her to root it out.
And she does. It’s all incredibly gross and verges on if not crosses well in to slut shaming many times. Some of the girls are aware that Leah has a past as a topless model (as most of us who consume trash media also knew) and manage to leak this to Kate. Elora and Simone are the ones that are involved in mentioning it to her, but there seemed to be a general awareness that it was heading in that direction. Leah actually starts tearing up in front of her when she realises Kate’s not just ‘popping by to drop off a date card’ but is in fact staying the whole day, and not just because she remembers how scary Kate was with Georgia Love (more on that later). And in to-camera, Tara tells us that Leah has skeletons in the closet, and ‘The skeletons are going to come out dancing soon’.
skeletonstripper

Leah skirts the topic in one conversation with Kate but when she’s pulled aside later at the group date, she explains that while she now manages events and staff, she was at one point a topless model. Full credit to Matty, he is not the one who slut shames her when Kate eventually tells him that he should talk to Leah. No, it’s the language everyone else uses – Kate saying they’re ‘pretty serious allegations’, Elise saying with a raised eyebrow ‘you can imagine the sort of parties she plans’, Elora asking cattily ‘Did he tip you?’ – that really attempts to put Leah in her place. So why do I call Matty a hypocrite? Firstly, because with both Leah and Simone (who is forced to admit she also did some topless waitressing to make ends meet when she moved to Australia from the UK), he is angry at them for hiding this information from them, despite not giving them single dates that would show his interest in getting to know them. Simone even says to him that she did not know the best time to say it, because she hasn’t even got to know him yet. At what point would work they’ve done previously even be relevant to his life? After uni I took a temp job at which I used to research bars on the internet and write up blurbs for a restaurant guide. How often do you think I clamber to tell people that? It’s a job, it’s not who you are as a person.
In addition, I think he’s a hypocrite because he sent his sister in to interrogate and stir up drama, and his reason for pulling aside Leah at the cocktail party and sending her home? Because she’s involved in drama.

I didn’t want to see Leah go out this way. I didn’t want to feel the urge to defend her. But she did leave us with a parting gift, telling Matty: ‘I feel like you’re making a mountain out a of a moehill’

moehill11

Looks regular-sized to me.

2. He’s still a baby creeper
The return of Kate was always gonna ramp up the baby talk. When he took Georgia Love home last year, Kate was not very subtle that she would be very upset if he moved away from Sydney. He’d just returned from London, and she was very much enjoying the free babysitting for little George – little George who apparently spurned Matty’s own interest in human spawn. It seemed inevitable that possibly Kate’s role on the show was simply going to be to gauge everyone’s interest in free babysitting. Somehow they made that in to a date, which she attended. Jen, Leah, Tara, Elise, Lisa and Laura were tasked with helping a bunch of five year olds make volcanoes for an experiment, although first they had to be ‘selected’ by the kids. Firstly, it seems really unfair to send Tara, who’s a nanny, on this date. Secondly, Kate is a bit patronising at the end. Osher asks ‘Kate, was it eye-opening for you?’ ‘It wasn’t for me, because I have a child, but I’m sure it was for the girls’. Yeah you’re really my favourite kind of person, Kate.
mommynow

Laura struggles quite a bit with this challenge. She is openly not super maternal – see, she likes kids, but she doesn’t know what to do with ‘someone else’s kids’. I’m not sure what kids she’s met that don’t fit that description but okay. I feel her. I like my friend’s kids, I love my beautiful wee nephew, but I’m not a natural with them either. So she does actually perform an amazing turn around from having no kid picking her to work with, to having the munchkin that was forced in to it hugging her and sitting in her lap. Obviously Matty shows his relief at her continued potential baby mama status by rewarding her with some solo time on a paddle steamer.

They haven’t really talked about it before so it’s the perfect time to talk BABIES. Luckily he doesn’t have to throw her off the side of the boat, as she does indeed want kids, even if she does cheers to ‘Children you can give back’. I see a little tension on the horizon, as you could practically see the smile freeze on his face when she says she really wants to make sure she’s done everything she wants to do before she sprogs up, and she’ll probably be ready ‘in 5 or 6 years’.

hans

Seriously you can quit it with the roses and just start giving these out next time you actually get to a ceremony, Matty:
someecards

3. He’s still using his tongue to end conversations
Still on the date with Laura, just like he did with Tara last week, he pashes her while she’s mid sentence. I quite like that she (jokingly) calls him out for ‘rudely’ interrupting her.

4. He’s totally going to send Alix home soon
God, he didn’t even ask her if she wanted kids, so what hope does she stand? Alix’s solo date got a little overshadowed by the drama this week. They seemed to have a good time, off on a little wakeboarding trip. Matty can’t stand to use a good line once, so knowing he had another sporty, competitive girl on his hands, he decided to put a wager on the line – just like he did with Lisa over tennis. I can’t criticise Alix for her poor performance on the wakeboard because if I tried I definitely would not go anywhere, but it’s….not good. They come to an agreement regarding their wager (the winner gets a massage from the other) and he creepily tells her ‘Come with me,  Alix’. She seems extremely in to her shoulder massage and they actually have a really nice open chat about how she’s been feeling a bit left behind, and how he understands that, as he wasn’t chosen for a single date himself til quite late in the game. However, once they start on this path, Alix finds it very hard to get out of her head (the cameras surely don’t help), and keeps talking about the other girls instead of doing what Matty wants to her do – forget all her entirely rational concerns and get to the smooching, dammit. The smooching moment passes after he gives her a rose, however, and they don’t get back to it. RIP Alix.

5. He cracks his knuckles
It’s fucking gross stop it.