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‘The Bachelorette’ Recap: Rachel Breaks Out the Axe in Scandinavia

Variety logo Variety 6/28/2017 Seth Kelley
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“I’m so annoyed by this,” Rachel says in the first twenty minutes of Tuesday’s episode of “The Bachelorette.” To what was she referring? Who cares! It’s a perfect way of describing the opening sequence, which wrapped up Rachel’s two-on-one date with Kenny and Lee in the Norwegian wilderness.

Rachel says that her choice between Kenny and Lee is based on trust. “Lee after hearing what I heard today, I don’t trust you,” she says. “And because of that, I’m going to send you home.” Oh! That was easy! At long last. Kenny and Rachel are about to board a helicopter to freedom, and leave Lee alone with only his fur-upholstered chair to keep him company. But, then, Kenny leaves Rachel to go have some last words with his former competition. It’s a bad move for Kenny who could have proved that he was done with the drama and ready to move on with Rachel, but that doesn’t happen. Don’t worry (Sorry, were you worried? Don’t be.) because there’s redemption for Kenny later. But, for now, he gets to stay and we move to the rose ceremony.

Monday night’s episode teased that Rachel was not feeling Josiah’s nonsense, so it’s not a huge surprise that he is sent home. But Anthony! Oh, Anthony. Pour one out for Anthony. He meets a harsh fate, indeed. If you don’t remember which one Anthony is, I can’t blame you, but he’s the one who went on a super normal date riding horses down Rodeo Drive.

The final nine travel with Rachel to Copenhagen, Denmark where Eric gets the first one-on-one date. It is difficult to understate how excited Eric is when he meets Rachel. He screams. He rambles. He dances. It’s all very adorable. He’s also never been in love before. Rachel seems to think that maybe she could be his first, and grants him a rose.

“Let’s do the Viking cheer,” Rachel calls out to the seven men invited on the group date. Seriously, who is making her say this nonsense? Anyway, they obviously all do a Viking cheer. On the date, Tom and Morton, two random men the producers could have found anywhere, who are apparently Viking instructors, lead the men through a serious of incomprehensible competitions.

“I totally feel like the Viking goddess of love today,” Rachel says, which, honestly what even?

Kenny and Adam end the Viking games with a sword and shield duel. They both end up bloody. Fake Viking games are a very embarrassing reason to bleed, but sacrificing dignity seems to come hand and hand with signing onto the show. Rachel sounds off with one more heinous, fed line: “Here’s to you guys pillaging my feelings and raiding my heart.” Might never recover from that one.

During the more intimate portion of the date, Rachel gets silly around Bryan and Peter. She whispers. She giggles. She gives them eyes. It’s a good showing. Then, there’s Kenny. “He’s doing fine … physically,” Matt says to Rachel about Kenny. “Emotionally I think he’s struggling.”

Before long, it becomes apparent that Matt is correct. Rachel ends up sending Kenny home, but he gets a masterful edit. First, he takes control of the situation and tells her that he doesn’t feel their relationship has progressed quickly enough. He invokes his daughter, and says that he only wants to keep going if he knows that Rachel’s feelings for him are serious. She confirms that they’re not. He’s sent home like a gentleman.

“Why do you have to be so smart and insightful?” he asks her on his way into the limo.  “I’ve been here before,” she responds. “I’ve dated someone with a child.” Oh, yeah, also Peter gets the group date rose.

Gosh, there’s a shocking amount of plot for an episode of “The Bachelorette,” but just hang in there. The finale one-on-one date of the episode goes to Will, and together he and Rachel go to Helsingborg, Sweden where they are greeted by a strange man singing and playing the acoustic guitar because that’s apparently just what Swedes do.

In a cafe, a strange couple comes up and sits with them. Maybe they were planted by the tourism board? Maybe they were some producer’s awkward relatives? I’d like to believe that they were simply a nice old couple that saw a camera crew and asked to get involved. The two have been together for 35 years, and Rachel is envious of their relationship.

But she won’t find anything like that with Will! “The most that Will has done today is hold my hand. And even that’s a stretch,” she says. Later, “We are standing on top of a castle … we have the perfect setting for romance, and there’s still nothing.”

There’s a whole subplot where Will says that he has typically only dated white women, mostly because of his upbringing — there just weren’t that many black women around. Rachel tells him that she came from a similar situation, but has dated mostly black men. It’s not working out between them and she sends him home.

One last note. Will says to Rachel at one point, “Sweden was not on my bucket list. But now it’s been retroactively added and crossed off,” which he meant to sound positive, but really the same can be said for any place that you have ever visited. For example, the Manhattan tow pound was not on my bucket list. But now it’s been retroactively added and crossed off. See? It means nothing. Just like Will means nothing to Rachel.

Rachel ends the episode with a rose ceremony where she sends one more man home. She’s on a roll! I would argue that Alex is objectively more handsome than at least two of the remaining men, but Rachel sends the Russian hunk home. If you’ve lost count, that’s five men gone in one episode.

If you’ve felt since about the second episode that there are maybe only three men out of the original bunch who were worth of Rachel, apparently she feels the same way. And with that, four hours of “The Bachelorette” in two days comes to a close.

Do you think Rachel made the right decision sending so many people home this week? Do you feel personally afflicted by Peter and Dean’s lack of screen time? Weigh in below.

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