Breakup hour has reached the beach! Labor Day has arrived, and the summer flings no longer seem that fun n' flingy. Or, in Paradise terms (this was filmed months ago), filming is coming to a close, and it's either pony up and become a Bachelor Nation Tentpole Couple. Being a Bach Nation Couple is a big deal — you might have to return to Paradise eventually, and you certainly will have to try Sugar Bear Hair. (You didn't hear this from me, but those gummy bears are apparently skin-destroyers.) As Paradise comes to a close, the solid couples begin questioning their foundation. Was this real? Or was this an excuse to eat guac on the beach for four weeks with some friends?
Before anything goes down, Paradise introduces one more interloper. Robby Hayes, the tooth model and former swimmer from Jojo Fletcher's Bachelorette season, materializes, ready to steal someone's girl. Unfortunately, his teeth no longer have the sway they used to have.
The first couple to examine their relationship is Jenna and Jordan. We'll start there.
Jenna & Jordan
Following a pretty anti-climatic "model showdown," Jenna and Jordan go on a date. They are one of the most surprising couples of the season Jenna feels like she's being squished into a little ball. If I were read into that, I would say that means she's feeling objectified. Welp. They immediately shift into an engagement photo shoot.
Jenna is nervous about the photoshoot — she's not ready to get engaged. Apparently, Jenna is "scarred a little bit," per Astrid, who is, once more, our Paradise narrator.
"You're more than I thought that I wanted," Jenna tells him. Later, in the Fantasy Suite, she says that she feels like God sent Jordan to her. They are deeply, weirdly, definitely in love, and I am now convinced that Emma Stone will play Jenna in the inevitable biopic about these reality stars. When the door closes on their fantasy suite, Jenna sings, "You have NO idea what you're getting yourself into."
Joe & Kendall
Following a brash mention of engagement, Kendall and Joe falter. The thing is, Kendall never thought this was serious. Joe has been serious the whole time. This may be why he seems unfit for Paradise. She's realizing that she's young and Paradise is really for those who really, really, need/want to settle down. Kendall then goes to bed without telling Joe how she was feeling — a big mistake in Paradise.
Later, they have an actual conversation, one of the first of the season. The reality: Kendall isn't sure what "kind of" love she's feeling for Joe.
"The truth is, you don't know how you feel about me," Joe says, hitting the nail on the head.
They also reveal some interesting details about their relationship thus far. Like, say, apparently Kendall has maintained that she wanted the relationship open. Meanwhile, Joe didn't want to have an open relationship — he didn't want her to date Leo, and he didn't want her to kiss John.
And, at that, Joe leaves, with Kendall not far behind.
"I thought we had something way stronger than [friends]," he admits. "There's no way I thought this was going to happen two days ago." He adds, "I guess I'm just really gonna miss her."
With that, Paradise has its first real breakup.
John & Olivia
Hanging out in a patch of sunflowers, because Olivia is the "brightest thing" here for John. Question: Do we think Olivia has seen Sierra Burgess is a Loser?
Olivia chooses John at the rose ceremony — later, she admits that John is a first for her. The men she's dated? They've all hurt her. (This is a trend in Bachelor Nation, or perhaps the national trend overall.) She and John make the bold decision to forgo the Fantasy Suite in favor of something cooler — they leave Paradise together. Maybe they can arrange their own date?
Olivia & Diggy
Diggy pulls some "strings" and gets a trumpet player to serenade Olivia. Think the trumpet isn't the most romantic instrument? You're probably right! It's not that romantic, and, when John steals Olivia for his (far, far lamer) tribute, the trumpet becomes a flatulent sound of failure. Diggy leaves at the rose ceremony.
Kamil & Annaliese
Kamil and Annaliese are so boring. At one point in this episode, Annaliese says, "Couples are dropping!"
And Kamil ever-so-helpfully adds, "Like flies!"
This couple decides to go to the Fantasy Suite, despite everything. In the suite, Kamil claims to be falling in love with Annaliese.
Chris & Krystal
Weepily, hungrily in love, so much so that they look bashful about it. They decide to go the Fantasy Suite, where they'll finally get to do yoga and stare deep into each other's eyes.
On their date, they discuss some of their fears. Essentially, erm, there are none. They like each other a lot, they both love fitness, and Krystal actively calls him "the Goose" on her Instagram. What more can you ask of reality television love?
Cassandra & Jordan
Poor Cassandra hasn't gotten anyone to make a move on her. At the start of the episode, she's frustrated that Jordan still hasn't made it clear that he likes her. She asks who should make the move and he says, "I think you have to ask me to make a move." They kiss, and a day later, she gives her rose to Jordan. Despite this dalliance, though, they part ways before the Fantasy Suite.
Shushanna & Robby
It would be nice to see Shushanna the "good witch" — she broke a Champagne bottle with her mind earlier in the episode — win. It would be nice to see Robby escorted from this franchise, never to flash his talons (sorry, teeth) on camera ever again. Neither of those things will happen, and this couple is sort of exploring a relationship. They leave Paradise with the idea that they might go on a date in the real world.
Kevin & Astrid
They "didn't have to force it." They were talking about salad dressings! They were the couple that Paradise couldn't break. Until it did. Kevin has a "full mental breakdown."
"I just don't know what to do," he says, looking constipated. (Given all the quesadillas in Paradise, that might actually be true.) They leave Paradise in weepy tatters, convinced that it just might not work.
"I can't give you more than what I've given you. So, if it's not enough, it's not enough," Astrid says, crying but composed. She is the most composed person in Paradise. She leaves without a word to Kevin, our icy queen of Paradise.
The Couples Ranking
3. Kevin & Astrid: I know they broke up. I am in denial.
2. Chris & Krystal: I am excited to see their post-show Instagram journey. May they have many puppies.
1. Jenna & Jordan: God sent her to him!