From the clip I’ve gathered a few things. Firstly: Rachel Lindsay is out to live her Love & Basketball fantasy and I am here for it.
Let’s be real, what little brown girl didn’t fall in love with the story of “Monica and Quincy” after being introduced to the couple in theaters nearly 17 years ago as kids?
It’s also clear that Lindsay means business and she's looking for a suitor who can keep up (again: see Sanaa Lathan’s Monica Wright in that iconic “Double or Nothing” scene) with her own skills on and off the court. Who is up for the challenge?
Well, the suitors may have given a few clues in tonight's teaser. According to a very scientific study, where I view the clip 24 times and try my hardest not to entangle personal dating bias with television narratives, I've translated what the guys are really saying in this clip.
First up: DeMario
“This is my zone. I grew up playing basketball. I’m going for blood. I’m extremely confident. I’m confident like Michael Jordan in the finals. I’m confident like Tom Brady in the Super Bowl. I’m straight up a winner. Born winner."
Translation: We get it, dude, you’re CONFIDENT... in physical scenarios. You’ll probably upstage everyone on the court, but as for relying on you for more emotionally-driven scenarios (read: helping Rachel with the wedding or simply grabbing a pack of tampons at the local CVS while she's curled up at home in the fetal position) you’ll be a no-show.
Next up: Eric
“I kind of feel like DeMario and I, we’re going to be kind of fighting for that attention or that time or that rose honestly.”
Translation: Rachel? Rachel who? My eyes are now on DeMario. Who cares about making it to the altar, I’ve found my nemesis. I’m Batman, he’s Joker.
Next up: Josiah
"Rachel looks spectacular. She had on some legging tights that just fit her body like a Coca-Cola bottle...It was ah-mazing."
Translation: Boner on site.
Though let's be honest...Rachel's words may have had a few hidden meanings as well.
"I have a really fun day planned for you guys…”
Translation: I’m going to embarrass the crap out of you. By the time the day is over, I’ll know the extent of your shortcomings. Thanks.
"I grew up playing competitive ball, but I’m a little bit rusty..."
Translation: I can probably outplay you all but I’m aware of The Fragile Masculinity and how I may scare you off, so let me ease your anxiety by letting you know I haven’t played in a while. Again, thanks.
All jokes aside tonight’s episode will certainly feature some surprises. In keeping with the basketball theme, the legendary Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is also set to appear on the show. In case you missed it, some months back Abdul-Jabbar wrote an op-ed for The Hollywood Reporter and he had some strong feelings about the show.
“Five months ago, I wrote an article for The Hollywood Reporter titled ‘How the Bachelor and Bachelorette Franchise Are Damaging Romance in America,’ he said in a recent follow-up. He then went on to discuss a number of problems with the reality TV franchise, one of those problems being its lack of diversity.
“Then along came Rachel Lindsay. Making it to the semifinals of The Bachelor before Nick Viall tearfully decided (weren't all his decisions tearful?) to cut her loose, Rachel distinguished herself as intelligent, athletic, playful, witty and emotionally mature. She also happened to be black,” he said.
What a difference a season makes, he’ll be on the show to help Rachel choose a winning suitor.
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