Hi Everyone! It’s one of my favorite episodes of the season: hometown dates. We see Nick crawl through the mud, clap his hands at church, and be on the receiving end of a lot of rough conversations. We also saw all the girls and Nick look wistfully at the Manhattan skyline from the William Vale hotel which I have WATCHED get built and looked at on dozens of introspective nights because it is next to Thought Catalog’s corporate apartment and just blocks from our Williamsburg office. Could Nick REALLY have not stopped by to hangout on Facebook Live with us???? REALLY??? Help your girl out man! We would have Drizly-ed for you and filled your messenger bag with emotional books you can tell girls you have read and loved in order to seem deep.
Here’s how the girls did this week:
At first I thought Raven just represented some kind of unfulfilled southern bell fantasy for Nick and he was just fucking around with her a bit before he’d pick someone else. But there are actual things about her that complement him. He loves that she is the kind of girl who wants to drive when they’re on a 4 wheeler together (and my soft spot for Nick is that I love that he loves that).
Also big LOL as Raven describes what you do for fun in Hoxie, which includes “climbing grain bins”. I can assure you this is a real thing and it is much more fun than it sounds because you are sneaking around in the night and laughing. What small town people lack in culture they make up for in creativity — at least while they’re young.
Y’all this is nasty though. I’m no clean freak but this is field water!! This is how you get West Nile!
Later on Raven brings Nick home to meet her family. There’s a bizarre moment when her dad reveals that he is cancer free (bizarre because, why wouldn’t you tell your daughter the moment you find out?) and my emotional reaction as a view at home on my couch was bigger than hers. I know the show is about voyeurism, but sharing this moment and then brushing over it to focus on their tv relationship felt really gross.
Nick asks her father for his blessing “if” they decide to get engaged. I don’t know how to feel about this. I don’t really think it’s right to put Raven’s family through this unless it’s about to become a reality. Don’t ask four fathers for their blessing. It really doesn’t seem fair. The girls signed up to get their hearts jerked around, their families didn’t.
The hometown visit ends when Raven tells Nick she has no hesitations with him and he responds “well I’m really glad…. so yeah.”
Vanessa’s family is as boring and legalistic as I would expect them to be. There is a lot of arguing and crying and stressing out about stuff that honestly just doesn’t matter. He’s going to pick her or he’s going to pick someone else (and honestly, he’s going to pick her) but it doesn’t help propel the relationship forward to be upset about a situation you literally signed up for. Rachel’s family had a lot more important questions to ask Nick, but they managed to do it in a way that felt earnest instead of aggressive.
I rail against Vanessa a lot but she is not right for Nick and won’t make him happy. She is not fun and she doesn’t know how to have fun. And she’s not even serious in an interesting way — like if she was really into Camus or something.
However, I do LOVE how Vanessa tells her students she loves them. I don’t think you’re allowed to do that in America? But you definitely should be. That seems super healthy for the kids.
I’ve long felt that Vanessa is Nick’s pick. She looks exactly like Andi and he’s always acted like he likes her the most. But this episode has convinced me that they couldn’t be worse for each other. He is not the kind of guy, fundamentally, that she needs in order to be happy. She needs and wants someone more traditional who wants a smaller life than Nick wants. IDK why she isn’t already with some hot Canadian family man. Similarly Nick needs and wants someone more exciting, who is serious sometimes but not about the same topics Vanessa is serious about. I really just don’t think he wants to move to Canada and settle into this slow family life.
Or maybe there are two Vanessa’s — the one who is on IMDB and the one who presents herself as wanting this lil life.
Off topic: I wasn’t paying attention to who this kid is but his throwback My So-Called Life aesthetic is everything to me.
Corinne is one of the most beautiful people in Bachelor history. She always looks messy and not put-together and so much more beautiful because she she doesn’t have to try. She is vibrant and oozing joie de vivre and I want to be around her even though I typically don’t like to be around people with such bad values. There’s a way that she commits to her bad values with such ferocity, I want to be near her and absorb her confidence.
Corinne takes Nick shopping to an “exclusive mall”. Which is weird, I always thought getting really rich would mean I’d never have to shop again and people would just bring me stuff I wanted to buy. But they have fun, Nick is cute making jokes and trying stuff on. Here’s his “Miami soccer dad” outfit:
Corinne describes her family as “so relaxed” which is the extreme opposite of Vanessa’s family. And they are so relaxed (I’m sure all the money helps!!!). I love how happy and unconventional they all are. They’re just interested in doing what works for them, not arbitrary rules and social expectations. They seem very happy and interested in each other’s happiness.
Her father grills her about whether Nick will make her happy. Wouldn’t she rather be with someone who is rich? But Corinne already has money, she says she’s fine being the breadwinner — which I also love about her.
In Dallas, Rachel takes Nick to a black church, which I’m surprised to report he really enjoyed. For some reason I expected him to be snobby about people who are religious, but he says he’d love if that was a regular aspect of their relationship together — which I think is so healthy. It doesn’t have to be religion, but craving some meta kind of system for thinking about your life and your values and how you’re progressing is a really attractive quality to find in someone.
Also v weird to see Rachel’s pastor refer to Nick as her “boyfriend” while knowing full well Nick has three other “girlfriends”.
Nick says he always feels the most comfortable with Rachel and like he’s the most himself when he’s with her. It’s a flashback to last season when Ben said this exact same thing about Jojo — before choosing another woman over her. As much as I think Nick is kind of overly self-important and neurotic, I also relate to him a lot. I think feeling understood is something he hasn’t had in many of his relationships and it’s a harder thing to come by when you’re a person who is in their head all the time — which makes it even more shocking that he dumps Rachel. If this is something that’s really rare and really important, what, exactly, is better?
I think the show does a really good job of talking about their interracial relationship. Everyone involved acknowledges the issues involved and talking about them while being respectful and keeping it in perspective as a part of their relationship as a whole. He had honest and deep and good conversations with her whole family. Rachel’s dad is a federal judge and was not allowed to be on the show, but I did read that they had a private conversation off camera.
The reason perhaps Rachel is kicked off is because we see a few times that she’s saying she “could” fall in love with him while the rest of the girls are already there. Maybe that feeling is mutual, or maybe Nick feels like the other women are more of a sure thing.
burning questions for next week’s episode
Did they purposely style Andi’s hair like this so they could trick us into thinking it was Vanessa or some other girl???
What does Andi say that ‘blows Nick’s mind’???
When will ABC stop fucking putting the rose ceremonies in different episodes???
How does Nick possibly think at this point that he’s somehow going to get rejected???
See you next week!