RECAP: The Bachelorette Australia – S2 E03

RECAP: The Bachelorette Australia – S2 E03
The Bachelorette Australia Season 2
Background photo: Morning Rose by Pamela Kelly (Flickr)

Georgia love gets 10/10 for harem building.

It’s Bachie-with-Jodi time again! Georgia Love is slowly whittling her harem of handsome men down, so let’s dive right into the whittling process.

One thing I really like about Georgia Love, by the way, is that she is tooooootally keeping some of the dudes around purely for her own amusement. Like, she’s a smart lady. She knows that Rhys is a pretty face and some nice abs but there’s not much going on otherwise. She knows that Sam is an entitled jackass. She knows she’s not going to end up with either of these dudes. But she lets them stay around to, like, write amazing poetry and shoot themselves in the foot for our entertainment.

Basically, she understands that, in the limited time that she’s allowed to have a harem, she needs dudes for different purposes. Some of these dudes — Lee, Clancy, Courtney, Cameron — are genuine anceantic prospects, potential Prince Charmings. But every queen needs a court jester: and as an audience, we appreciate it.

What I’m getting at is that I really like the way you’re shaping your harem, Georgia Love. Ten out of ten.

But let’s get right to it. We open tonight with the traditional date card, pulled from a mysterious Osher orifice. Tonight’s recipient is Lee, and ooooh, the dudes don’t like that. ‘Do you think she’ll make him take his shirt off?’ one of them asks.

‘I think she likes a bit more than looks,’ one says reassuringly.

‘But even I like looking at Lee,’ a third says glumly.

Suffice it to say, they consider Lee a threat (and are also possibly attracted to him, which, like, I am here for if the show wants to explore that angle). And so, when Georgia Love arrives in a Mercedes to pick him up, they all trail out awkwardly after him. ‘It’s like a whole lot of dads watching!’ she exclaims. It’s unclear whether they’re meant to be her dads or his: I was genuinely not sure whose virtue they were supposed to be protecting.

And then we have a moment of incredible gender role confusion. Georgia opens Lee’s door for him, and then goes round to get in the driver’s side, AND HE LITERALLY JUST STANDS THERE CONFUSED BECAUSE HE DOES NOT KNOW HOW TO COPE WITH A LADY OPENING A DOOR FOR HIM.

I’m not joking. He is legitimately not sure whether her opening a door for him is a sign that he should get in the car. WHAT. IS. HAPPENING.

… obviously I have a lot of thoughts about this, but you can probably guess what they are, so let’s just settle for laughing at the fact that the numberplate of the Mercedes is 69.BENZ.

They drive off together (Georgia driving, which YES) and bond over their shared love of dad jokes. I feel like this would have been pretty cute if it wasn’t for the fact that a lot of these jokes had unfortunate racial overtones. Bachie as a franchise is not very good at race, so this isn’t exactly surprising, but still.

From their car, they jump on a boat, because if there’s one thing we’ve learned from Bachie, it’s that dates mostly revolve around epic transpo. ‘I want to give you a taste of something from my childhood,’ Georgia Love announces to Lee, and then hands him an X-marks-the-spot treasure map.

I really want to know about Georgia Love’s childhood now. Did she grow up in Treasure Island? Is she one of those hoyden heroines from those 1980s pirate romances?

As far as treasure hunts go, this one is pretty damn easy: they disembark from the boat, walk along that same private beach where Richie took Nikki on their very first date, and voila! treasure chest. And inside is a) cheese and b) alcohol, because my girl G Love has a real solid understanding of what ‘treasure’ actually means.

Lee and Georgia Love engage in a playful game of two-truths-and-a-lie, where they have to guess each other’s celebrity crushes. They both get it wrong, but it slots nicely into the romantic narrative that’s being constructed around them. These are two people with a shared sense of humour that feel immediately at ease around each other: ‘I feel like I’ve known you way longer than the ten minutes I’ve actually spent with you,’ Lee confesses to her.

And all this makes me very happy, because it shores up a theory I’ve been developing about Bachie (in particular, Australian Bachie): it relies heavily on notions of intimacy rather than passion. Passion encompasses instantaneous attraction — eyes across a crowded room kind of stuff. But intimacy is based on communication and on knowing the beloved well. This is quite a modern notion of love, which perhaps explains why it resonates so much with us.

(If you want to hear me expand more on this idea? Read my chapter on Bachie in this book.)

Lee and Georgia Love also discuss ideas of love and time, which I found quite interesting. She asks him if he has a timeline for his life — if he wants to be married by a certain age, have kids by a certain age, etc. He says he wants those things, but only with the right person.

We tend to imagine love as part of a timeline — as implied by the phrase ‘waiting for Mr Right’. But there’s also this idea that love evades time, and that you have to resist the pressures of time — avoid Mr Right Now — to find Mr Right, to do love right. I’m fascinated by this tension.

But anyway! Let’s get back to the recap. Lee and Georgia Love are incredibly charmed by each other, they snog a lot, and she gives him a rose.

Next up: group date! It’s a trapeze date, because before she took up her career as a journo, Georgia Love taught trapeze.

You guys. This woman is a straight up romance heroine. Tell me you wouldn’t read a book about a trapeze-artist-turned-journo. I would eat that up for breakfast.

The dudes have to learn that trapeze skill where you swing and trust someone else to catch you. Obviously, we all know that if you can’t do trapeze, then you don’t deserve love. That’s in the bylaws of romance.

The actual point of this exercise, Georgia Love tells us, is for them to show their trust and communication skills, which are vital in any relationship. However, as she tells us in an aside, the real reason for this date is because THE THIRST IS REAL and she wants to see them all in their lycra.

I love this woman. Seriously, I love her. I want to solve mysteries with her.

Mostly, they all do pretty well on this challenge — except for villain Sam, who totally screws it up. Predictably, he’s very bitter about it: he’s all, ‘well, I suppose the other guys have to beat me at ONE thing in their WHOLE DAMN LIVES because otherwise it would be RIDICULOUS, amirite?’

But the real star is Matty, who is … apparently a person who has been here all this time? I legit don’t think I’ve seen him. His pointed toe action wins him MVP, which means a) he gets to try the same stunt, but in the position of catcher — catching Georgia Love, and b) he gets some alone time with her.

He performs the stunt flawlessly, but it’s the alone time afterwards which is really nice. Apparently, one of G Love’s romantic fantasies is to drink wine with a dude while lying on a trapeze net and staring at the stars. This seems like a very specific fantasy, and I love it. Someone write that into their romance novel at once. We are all in the trapeze net, but Georgia Love is looking at the stars.

They have a quite a sweet little conversation — although Matty utters the phrase ‘what could I teach you?’ which makes me want to run screaming for the hills. Although she laughs it off, perhaps this is why — shock of shocks — Georgia Love does not give him a rose at the end of the date.

Discerning with her roses. I love her even more.

He does, however, get a rose at the rose ceremony, as do all our usual suspects. The two eliminees this time are total nobodies — like, I legit can’t remember their names and am not actually sure they were there the whole time.

The rose ceremony is more notable for the fact that handsome Clancy attends in a bathrobe, after having jumped in the pool during the cocktail party. (He did it to prove to Courtney that he really wanted to go on the group date that Courtney is organising, as possessor of the special orange rose. I don’t understand this works at all, but … eh, bros, I guess.) I’m very sure that the producers could have found Clancy another suit if they wanted to, but no, they left him in his robe. Because of reasons. Wherein reasons equal muscles.

The show airs on Channel 10 on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7.30pm. You can catch up on previous episodes via TenPlay.

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Jodi is a literary historian currently working as a lecturer at the University of Tasmania. Her research focuses on the history of love, sex, women, and popular culture, so reading romance novels is technically work for her. Shed a tear for Jodi. Jodi is also an author, and her debut YA paranormal novel Valentine is due out in February 2017. One time, she was invited on a special private tour of the set of The Bold and the Beautiful, and it was the single best hour of her life.

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