I know how The Bachelorette is supposed to end, but after this week’s episode, I am not convinced that any of these men should propose to Rachel.
I had long ago dismissed Eric because he says “gimme a hug.” I firmly believe that any grown man who says that line is actually a child. So, in a way, it makes sense that there’s something oddly juvenile about Eric and Rachel’s dates. In Spain after the Hometowns in Dallas, Eric yells random words in excitement and attempts to use his words like a big boy to explain his feelings. “I’m feeling feelings of love,” he says to camera.
While Eric is learning how to feel, Bryan, as usual, is already there. His Hometown is fraught. Right out of the gate, he tells the Lindsay family that he started falling in love the minute that he saw Rachel. When they push him to be a little more candid and less rehearsed, both he and Rachel are visibly discomfited. She thinks the questions were unnecessary, which is typically a good sign that her family was doing the right thing. In a conversation with her mom, Bryan says that he loves Rachel and that if he’s chosen, he will propose.
Instant fan favourite Constance and the entire Lindsay crew are right to concerned about the pace of Bryan’s over-the-top declarations. He makes it sound like by the time the limo pulled up to the Bachelor Mansion, he had already imagined which Florida coastal community he would be retiring to with Rachel.
It is too damn much for me.
And it’s too damn much for Peter who is still not sure about the whole proposal thing. Unlike baby Eric and too-smooth Bryan, Peter’s visit with Rachel’s family is tonally perfect for a sane person who is making choices about oh, you know, FOREVER, and not just for the publicity cycle.
The last rose ceremony—RIP Dean, the romance puppy—made Peter realize that he was, in fact, falling in love with Rachel. It didn’t, however, put him on the show’s Path to Proposal. Speaking to Rachel’s mom, he says that he’s not ready to ask permission for marriage (a thing we’re apparently still doing in 2017 even though women can now vote and wear pants). Instead Peter asks to be allowed to date Rachel—and her mom respects and agrees with that.
Rachel says she’s falling in love with all three men, but Eric, Bryan and Peter are on such different emotional planes. Eric is discovering and—somewhat awkwardly expressing—love. Bryan is picking out china and moving his practice to Dallas. Peter is dating a beautiful woman and really enjoying that.
None of them are, in my opinion, ready to get down on one knee. While Eric is just learning how to truly be with someone, can he do that when it’s real and dishes have to be done? Bryan is ready to risk it all, but does Rachel really know what those risks are with someone who moves so quickly? Peter knows he’s not ready to propose and I respect that, but did he Google the show or nah?
There are so many questions still left to answer. And I’ll leave you with this one: can’t the show still have a romantic ending without a ring?