The Bachelorette's Ninth Week: Big Little Lies and Bye, Bye, Bennett

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Screenshot: ABC/The Bachelorette (Fair Use)

The season that will never end continues: Week 9 of Clare Crawley-turned-Tayshia Adams’s season of The Bachelorette began where last week left off—a two-on-one with Noah and Bennett, where only one man will remain. Noah’s a child, Bennett is a condescending asshole primed for Bachelor in Paradise, and so, naturally, he gets the boot. I simply hope that means viewers will be spared future conversations between two equally unaware white boys rattling off uninformed opinions about their personal “IQ vs. EQ.” At the very least, Adams refuses to give Noah a rose, which shows some promise in her decision-making.

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A cocktail party with the remaining contestants follows: Brendan wears a cute turtleneck, Riley brings out a cake for his one week anniversary with Tayshia, Zac C. hands her a framed picture from their weird wedding photo shoot. She kisses Ben, who is obviously going to win this season. After the party comes the rose ceremony, where Adams sent Demar, Spencer, and Ed (he was still here?) home. Noah remains, because ABC producers are the real villains.

Ben scores this week’s one-on-one, which involves a treasure hunt set up by JoJo Fletcher to find “an oasis.” At dinner, Ben and Tayshia have a heart-to-heart—he tells Adams he’s survived two attempts to die by suicide, in 2018 and 2019, after breaking his back in his mid-20s—harrowing information after revealing he suffered from bulimia for 10 years last week. She accepts him, expresses empathy, and gives him a rose. They dance to a live performance by some man named Adam Hambrick, because what’s a season of The Bachelorette without a country performance from a dude no one has heard of before?

The next day, the group date is... a series of polygraph tests. Romantic. JoJo Flecther asked the questions, uncovering that Zac C. has cheated before, and Riley’s name isn’t really Riley. At the cocktail party afterward, Riley reveals he did change his name—at birth, he was named after his father, with whom he has a complicated relationship, and so he became Riley in his 20s. Zac C.’s “cheating” was kissing a girl who wasn’t his girlfriend at a bowling alley in 6th grade. Everyone is in the clear!

Or are they? In the final moments of the show, Bennett returns to tell Tayshia he is in love with her and she has to think about it—could it be that when she took her polygraph test, and it said she regretted letting someone go, she was thinking of Bennett?

Next week there are back-to-back episodes—the Men Tell All on Monday and Hometowns on Tuesday, which feels rushed, but everything about this season has been atypical. Let’s meet some strange dads!

URL: Senior Writer, Jezebel. IRL: Author of the very good book 'LARGER THAN LIFE: A History of Boy Bands from NKOTB to BTS,' out now.

DISCUSSION

I thought that was Melissa Gorga until I saw the headline.