Hannah has been clear from the start of her Bachelorette season that there's a specific kind of partner she’s looking for: someone who’s bold, manly, and yeah, I’ll say it — will jump a fence for her. And on this week’s episode, She gets a pretty flavorful sampler plate of all the types of bold her remaining 20 Bachelorette men are serving up, with some more palatable than others. As astute musician Jed notes at the top of the episode: “Bold doesn’t have to mean being an asshole.”
Take, for instance, Cam, whose intense staring and bad rapping haven’t exactly earned him a top slot in Hannah’s eyes. Add to that the fact Cam showed up at a group date uninvited last week, and it’s no wonder that Hannah’s feeling a bit on-edge around him. This week, however, Hannah’s willing to give Cam another chance, and actually does invite him out on a group date, along with Jonathan, Matteo, John Paul Jones, Kevin, Tyler C., and Mike, with a date card that reads: “Let’s push our love to the limit.”
The seven guys meet up with Hannah for their date unsure of what shenanigans they’ll be getting into that day, and are no more reassured when she tells them, cryptically, that she has “something … interesting … in store for us.” They’re met in a clean, white room with flourescent lighting by celebrity Bachelorette fan Jenny Mollen and her husband, actor Jason Biggs (or, as John Paul Jones calls him, “the guy from American Pie), right in the throes of fake labor. Turns out the guys’ group date will revolve around babies: how they’re made, how to care for them, and finally, how it feels to give birth to one.
“Your stomach gets bigger and bigger and the woman gets hungrier and hungrier,” Tyler C. offers up as his understanding of pregnancy, which sets the tone for the rest of the afternoon. Next, the men reveal just how little they know about babies and female anatomy. Cam answers incorrectly that babies gestate for two weeks, and Jed just about topples over after wearing a weighted pregnancy belly. “That was insane,” he quips.
The best part of the date, however, comes at the end, when each of the men get treated to a series of shocks meant to simulate labor pains. Kevin volunteers to go first and tries to put on a brave face, but even the former military dude is finding it tough to keep his cool amid the pain. Best reactions include Tyler C., who attempts to strike a model pose during his turn; Jed, who says “Oh, wow!” in response to the pain; and John Paul Jones, who can barely keep it together even before the shocks are administered, and who just about crushes Hannah’s hand as the guys die laughing next to him.
Unfortunately for Hannah, the cocktail portion of the group date that night is arguably just as painful, with dramatic Cam eating up time like a needy gnat constantly waiting in the wings. At one point during the night, Mike opens up to Hannah about how he and his ex were once expecting, and then lost a baby during the second trimester, an experience that came crashing back as a result of the group date. “It was my fault because I wasn’t there for her at the time,” he tells Hannah, to which she responds with a big hug. Just as the pair are getting deeper into their conversation, however, Cam appears, hovering over the pair and even telling Mike to “wrap it up” at one point.
A noticeably annoyed Hannah tells Cam to “calm down,” but begrudgingly deigns to listen to what Cam has to say. “I’m a deep person myself,” rapper boy tells Hannah, and she fake smiles and nods along until — hallelujah — server boy Jonathan takes matters into his own hands and insists on talking to Hannah. “What goes around comes around,” he tells a shocked Cam.
Later, when the guys are back on the couch, Jonathan hilariously taunts Cam in one of the best moments from the episode. “You mad?” he asks Cam. “No, I just didn’t know you had it in you,” Cam shoots back. John Paul Jones, who couldn’t possibly be in a more awkward position, tries to make light of the moment, offering the pair some chicken nuggets, which they both politely decline. What?! No honey mustard? Get outta here with those nuggets, John Paul Jones.
The group date rose of the night ends up going to Mike (woohoo!), who flashes a huge smile at the win, and at Hannah’s pointed comment that “bold can be shown in a lot of different ways.” Taking note, Cam?
Back at the mansion, baby-faced Connor S. is stoked to get the next one-on-one date with a date card that reads, promisingly: “Connor, let’s set sail on our love story.” But unfortunately, the next day, he gets another card calling off the date. Seems like Alabama Hannah found herself in the hospital, and their undoubtedly scenic sailing date will have to be postponed. Instead, Hannah invites Connor S. over to her hotel suite for a low-energy chat, and the sweet dude brings over flowers and some chicken noodle soup.
The pair chat it up in bed, kissing like two young kids in love, and Connor leaves feeling elated but also slightly disappointed that he has to spend the evening chowing down on pizza with the guys instead of holding Hannah’s hand over a candlelit dinner. Luckily for the Post-It note king, however, Hannah naps, recoups, and summons up enough energy to meet Connor for some post-dinner swaying to the tunes of Lukas Graham, and a rose, natch.
The next morning, it’s off to the second group date of the week, with Garrett, Luke P., Devin, Grant, Joey, Pete, Dylan, and Luke S. all rounded up for a subtly promotional photoshoot with a few choice “supermodels,” aka cute animals ranging from puppies to alpacas to, in Grant’s case, a huge-ass snake. (Incidentally, I’ve never seen Grant so pumped for anything on the Bachelorette up until this point, which is pretty great.)
The shoot, an not-so-subtly sponsored event for The Secret Life of Pets 2, is all about Hannah getting to know these men and their pets (assuming they all have a friendly dog at home, and not, like, a tarantula in their parents’ basement), as well as Bachelor Nation favorite Demi getting to know the men a little better too. The Bachelor alum is once again tasked with helping her gal pal Hannah weed out any suspicious dudes who might not be there for the right reasons, with a planted makeup artist and animal trainer instructed to flirt with the men. And to their credit, the men do pass (it should also be noted that they all know they're on camera). Even Luke P., who’s constantly looking for any chance he can get to talk about his muscles (totally makes sense that he’s a CrossFit guy, by the way), passes the test by talking up Hannah and her great qualities. Whether his smarmy answer passes the BS test is another question altogether.
Luke P.’s bold moves (including interrupting another dude’s photoshoot to impress Hannah with a few pushups) aren’t exactly landing the way he might’ve hoped, however. That night at the cocktail party, Hannah takes Luke aside to dig deeper into the “little red flags” she’s been getting based on his possessive behavior. Hannah admits during a confessional that sometimes his confidence is attractive, but other times, “it’s one of the most unattractive things I’ve ever seen in my life.”
Luke P. tries to salvage the situation, but it’s clear that Hannah’s pissed, and she lets him know exactly why, not mincing her words one bit. “You know I like you, and that’s great, and I’m glad that we automatically had a deep connection, but I’ve been struggling with it, because I feel like you already feel like it’s promised to you, and that bothers me a lot,” she says. “Your confidence in this makes me irritated.” Damn, boo! But Hannah doesn’t stop there, though Luke tries to cut in.
“You also don’t respect that I have other relationships here for me,” she pushes on. “I like confidence, but I don’t like cocky. I want it to change.” Luke P. gets pretty butt-hurt by Hannah’s lecture, and tells the guys as much, saying that he even thought about leaving that night, and that he “can’t say that [he’s] in love with her,” a 180 from the mushy stuff he was telling Hannah just last week. Later on throughout the night, however, Luke can’t help himself, and in a fit of insecurity, pulls a Cam, trying to interrupt just about every guy that’s chatting with Hannah.
“If he wants to sink his own ship, I’m not gonna get in the way,” Pete tells the cameras at one point. In the end, Sweet Pete gets the group date rose, though, so seems like Luke P.’s emotional menacing hasn’t been working too well in his favor.
The next day, Chris Harrison makes his requisite fly-by at the mansion letting the men know that there won’t be a cocktail party that night. But that there will be a tailgate, to which the guys whoop and holler, until ABC Cam puts a damper on the mood. He tells the fellas that he wants to talk to Hannah about something “pretty serious,” and to basically respect his space and time in talking to her about his emotional Pandora’s box. Trusty ole Mike finally breaks the stunned, annoyed silence and quashes Cam’s request with a simple, “Nah.”
When Hannah arrives at the house, the mood is light and relaxed, which is, in Hannah’s own words, “just what mama needs.” But Debbie Downer Cam can’t let his lady love have even a moment of reprieve from her emotionally draining week (let's not forget that she literally went to the hospital), and insists on breaking up the party to pull her aside to talk to her. And what seems to be so important that he had to slap a disclaimer on the whole conversation? Cam tells Hannah about almost needing an amputation back in 2014, his grandmother passing the day before his surgery, having a 10-month-old puppy he had to re-home in 2017, and other such things, all while the tiniest violin plays in the background. “I’m an onion with a lot of layers,” he says as Hannah smiles, nods, and mentally checks out for the next 20 minutes. When he finally finishes his sad story, Hannah says a stiff, “Thank you so much,” and gives him a hug.
The guys aren’t too happy with Cam’s mood-killer convo, and later on during the tailgate party, Mike pulls Hannah aside to chat, alerting her to Cam’s ABC (“Always Be Creepin’”) ways. Hannah, clearly disappointed in the situation and annoyed as hell at Cam, pulls him aside one last time in what feels like a moment of deja vu (remember Scott, y’all?).
“It’s an interesting time for you to bring up this story,” she begins, explaining that Mike had told her about how Cam was essentially using the story as a last-ditch effort to stay another week. “What you told me was very serious, but it feels very manipulative, the timing.”
Hannah then points out that Cam was apparently writing letters to the guys (“Huh?” he says unconvincingly), and throws out the words “scheming” and “slimy,” to which thick-as-molasses Cam responds, “It sounds like you don’t trust me.” Nuh-uh, Cam. I’m with Hannah on this one. No one brings up a 10-month-old puppy unless they’re really desperate to stay at the mansion; everyone knows that.
But though Cam can’t believe that someone would “tarnish [his] intentions,” Hannah ultimately feels just fine with going with her gut, and ultimately lets him go home rose-free. The men who’ll be continuing on in the journey with her into next week are Jed, Tyler C., Dustin, Dylan, Grant, Luke P., Garrett, John Paul Jones, Matteo, Jed, Luke S., and Kevin.
Cam, Joey, and Jonathan get sent packing. And while Joey and Jonathan were totally stand-up gentlemen on their way out, even Cam’s final farewell felt slimy somehow. “Thanks for the opportunity,” he says as he awkwardly hugs Hannah. “I really do hope you find what you’re looking for.” I hope so too, Cam. I hope so too.
A Few Unforgettable Moments:
Date host Jason Biggs takes a dig at Colton during the first group date, telling the guys that he wants to find out how familiar they all are with the female anatomy. “But not Colton, am I right?” he chuckles, to which Hannah awkwardly responds with a “Yessssss.” Anyone keeping count of how many times the former Bachelor comes up per episode?
Cam resigned from his job to be on The Bachelorette, and he wants Hannah to know that that’s just how seriously he takes his new job of finding true love. Interestingly enough, John Paul Jones, when nervous about getting a rose back on night one, also made a similar confession. Wonder how many dudes are actually more accurately described by Grant’s chyron of “Unemployed”?
Sweet Pete’s parents' meet-cute is almost as cute as he is. The pilot tells Hannah that his parents met when his dad, a pilot, walked by his mom, then a flight attendant, and she checked out his dad’s butt and told a colleague, “That’s going to be my husband.” Apparently, back in the day, that’s all it took.