Last week in the comments I was asked what I thought of Benoit. It was a more than fair question; for a guy who “made it far”—every bit as far as I did—I’ve hardly touched on him. I don’t know how to put this politely, but I just never saw it with Jasmine and Benoit. To me their relationship always veered more platonic, like he was that goofy guy friend who would take a mile if given an inch (as evidenced by their Cirque du Soleil kiss), but whom she nevertheless found amusing. I’m glad Jasmine referenced some things being lost in translation with Benoit, because their language barrier struck me as an elephant in the room. Above all, though, it seemed like these two were simply on different wavelengths. This could be attributed to language or culture, or frankly, neither. (I don’t say any of this lightly; my own mother is ESL but she and my dad just got—and still do get—each other, even back when they first met and her English wasn’t nearly what it is today.) On the whole, Benoit was a nice enough addition to the show, but he wasn’t as entertaining to me as I feel like the producers thought he was. For the last 7 weeks, I’ve felt like Benoit has been pushed on me, the viewer, as a viable romantic interest for Jasmine and/or a hilarious comedian of sorts, and I never quite got on board with either
Kevin P was simply lovely this week. I feel a bit bad for finding him too slick in the beginning as I couldn’t feel more differently now that we’ve seen more of him. His 1-on-1 conversation with Jasmine about their families and nomadic ways on that, um, rock (?) was intense. It felt so complete, so unedited from start to finish. Now, perhaps this was the sort of conversation which resonated with all people in the way a horoscope reading does, but it truly resonated with me. Being more the “gypsy” type myself, I have dated men of similar types (especially if you consider that most men I’d meet would be via my profession), but ultimately I work best with—and am going to marry—a “feet on the ground” type like what Jasmine is looking for. However, I’ve never put the same labels on them and thus have never put quite Jasmine’s degree of thought into those labels, which made it neat to watch this conversation and legitimately learn something about myself. I can’t say I’ve learned much about myself after many years spent watching this show (except maybe that I love trashy TV). Being on this show, yes, but not watching it.
Back to Kevin P, he was a gentleman from start to finish. He could have given Jasmine a hard time for having his time (pretty blatantly) wasted—it’s not like he revealed anything on this date that suddenly proved him a “gypsy.” That was his MO from the get-go. But he was kind and appreciative of the experience nonetheless. I did not see Jasmine sending Kevin P packing at all. For some reason I was sure there’d be four Hometowns and that Kevin P, with his dark family story and dark horse kisses, would just make the cut.
Speaking of those Hometowns, and not to point out more Canadian vs American version differences, but I really like the idea of three Hometowns versus four. (Yes, I know with Bachelor Canada 2 there were three, but there were still supposed to be four.) Sure, no less time is dedicated to filming each Hometown whether there are three or four, but I predict it will make a hell of a difference in the episode. Not having to dilute the limited airtime over four Hometowns, especially when we all have a reasonable guess as to who’s at the bottom of the four, means more QT with the frontrunners’ families (which I for one love). Also, don’t think I missed that fourth wall breakage on Jasmine’s part. After sending Kevin P home she said—and was shown—confessing to host Noah Cappe, “It’s difficult to fast track a relationship the way that we are.” Preach!
And now, my predictions…
1. Kevin W, 32: For the first time ever, I’m putting Kevin W up top. Exactly what I predicted might happen with Kevin W post-argument happened; they patched things up lickety-split and emerged more solid as a couple than ever. As Jasmine put it: “Getting through a conflict with someone, especially for the first time, tells a lot about the relationship and how it’s going to be in the future. I feel closer to Kevin now.” What I liked best about both parties was that neither one held their grudge for long. They both showed up on this 1-on-1 ready to make the best of it and overcome their challenges, not dwelling on the harsh words they’d thrown at each other days (perhaps only one day?) before. To me, this is a sign of a true partnership, not letting your pride get the best of you. (I realize it’s still honeymoon phase and this “conflict” was all still within the romanticized Bachelor Bubble world, but still, its resolution could have gone worse.) Additionally, for how diligently Jasmine is at keeping stock of who is and has what she’s looking for, Kevin W seems to be and have all of those things. She felt Kevin P was too much of a gypsy like herself, but doesn’t have that issue with Kevin W. Meanwhile, with ultra-stable Mike, she worries about living in Winnipeg, but Kevin W has that stability (I think?) and lives in Toronto (which she doesn’t seem to take issue with). Above all, Jasmine said that Kevin W makes her feel “comfortable,” “wanted,” and “safe.” Those are three pretty powerful words, and as much as I like Mikhel and Mike, I haven’t heard Jasmine use those adjectives to describe how they make her feel.
2. Mikhel, 28: I still think Mikhel is a serious frontrunner but the more Jasmine is drawn to Kevin W, who has a definite edge to him, the less I feel like she’ll pick Mikhel. As I said last week, I believe Mikhel probably does have a less-than-squeaky-clean side to him, but we’ve yet to see it. Jasmine is way more in the driver’s seat in their relationship, and while it’s standard that the lead would be the one in control, I think the lead tends to be drawn to—and ultimately chooses—the contestants who are innately on equal footing with them. In all recent seasons I’ve felt the same way; Jordan was just as in control of his and JoJo’s relationship and she was. In fact, she routinely feared he wasn’t invested enough. I mentioned time and time again how Lauren B immediately challenged Ben and he was always proving himself to her and not the other way around. With Bachelor Canada 2, though Tim and April didn’t work out, despite Tim’s position of power he was the one constantly going out of his way to make sure she was happy and comfortable and on the same page as him. I don’t mean to say “nice guys finish last” (there was a great comment about this trope two weeks ago), but if all there is to Mikhel is niceness, it’s simply won’t be enough to win Jasmine over.
3. Mike, 29: I can’t believe I’m saying this, and part of me doesn’t even really believe it as I type it, but I’ve lost some degree of faith in Jasmine and Mike. As I’ve stressed over the last few weeks, this is entirely due to the edit and what we’ve been shown between them and not at all due to me thinking they’re not a good match. During their only 1-on-1 time this week, all Jasmine and Mike were shown talking about was Winnipeg and whether or not she could picture herself living there. I loved when Mike finally said, “The logistics and stuff I totally understand, but do you like me as a person, and do you see a future with me?” I can’t help but feel like if Jasmine were gung-ho about Mike, she’d be less hung up on Winnipeg and would spend more time trying to find a compromise. She said to Kevin W on their 1-on-1: “I want to have a person who supports me and encourages me to go further and be better and just has my back, and I want to do the same for that person. Just like a real partnership.” Have we heard anything remotely along these lines between her and Mike? Nope. Not that I think Mike wouldn’t have fantastic things to say about what he’s looking for, I just think he hasn’t been given that chance. And again, I’m the first to wonder about what’s on the cutting room floor, but would they really cut a conversation of that magnitude if it actually took place?
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