It’s time for this week’s Bachelorette.
A friend of mine said she had it on at her house and it was so boring she didn’t look up at the TV, so I have even lower expectations than usual.
This week the final four guys will bring their families to Minneapolis to meet Michelle.
First up is Brandon, who is from Portland.
He takes her to an indoor skate park because everyone in his family skateboards. He gets nervous and falls a lot. He says he’s fine on his own, but in front of Michelle his “legs don’t work.”
That night she meet’s Brandon’s mom, Carmen, his dad, David, and brother Noah.
Noah asks to talk to Michelle. He says that Brandon may act smooth but that he’s got a big heart and has been hurt in relationships in the past. He asks what sets Brandon apart from the other guys.
“I’ve just never had to question his feelings,” she says. When he asks if she can see herself making a life with Brandon, Michelle says, “100% yes.”
Overall Michelle clicks with the family.
Later Michelle tells Brandon she’s falling for him.
Next up is Rodney. He tells Michelle there’s an apple only grown in Minnesota called First Kiss, so they’re going to pick some. Rodney tells the camera he’s ready to propose to her.
That night she meets Rodney’s mom and stepdad. His mom, Carrie, says she and Rodney are best friends…which feels a little odd to me. Like, does Rodney feel that way? Or is she going to be competitive with Michelle?
Carrie talks to Michelle right away and asks what sets Rodney apart from the other guys. Michelle says Rodney makes her laugh more than anyone. Then Carrie asks if she could really create a life with her son, and Michelle says yes.
Carrie tells the camera that she has anxiety because Michelle is dating four men.
Rodney’s stepdad asks if his feelings are really that strong in such a short amount of time, and Rodney assures him that it’s real.
When Carrie talks to Rodney alone she tells him it scares her that he might be broken hearted at the end of the show.
He tells her, “I look at Michelle and she’s worth the risk.”
When he tells his mom he’s falling in love with Michelle, Carrie starts crying.
Next up is Joe, who is also from Minnesota.
They go to Joe’s old high school where they recreate prom. In her poem she read in an earlier episode, Michelle talked about being the last person asked to prom so the date means a lot to her.
Later Michelle meets Joe’s mom, dad, brother and sister-in-law. There’s a lot of awkward silence, to the extent that you can hear a clock ticking in the background.
Michelle asks his mom if she can see a difference in Joe now that they’re dating, and she says, “I can see how excited he is to sit next to you.”
This woman is from Minnesota and says that in the perfect Midwest-nice voice, so let me translate.
She has zero good things to say about Joe and Michelle. That was definitely a cut. It was a “beautiful gowns” moment.
In a proper Midwest get together, Michelle would follow this up with a comment about his mom’s cooking along the lines of “What kind of cream based soup did you put in this casserole? It’s just so different!” in a really perky voice.
Then the next time they all get together, his mom would deliberately not ask what side dish to bring, which is hugely insulting. The rule is you ask, and insist 3 to 4 times when the hostess declines, then, when she says to bring a salad which is largely made with whipped topping, you bring the salad largely made with whipped topping.
The cold war has thus begun and will be waged with passive aggressive compliments and un-returned Pyrex dishes for the next decade or more.
Joe tells his sister-in-law, Hannah, that he’s falling for Michelle and is ready to propose. Hannah says, “I hope this works out because we will see her in the grocery store.”
Lastly it’s Nayte’s turn. He and Michelle go paddle boarding in a lake. Nayte tells her his family isn’t very touchy-feely and doesn’t talk about emotions.
She meets his mom and stepdad, and Nayte’s mom gives her candy for her students. She says she used to be a teacher and that candy was the way to her students’ hearts.
Later his mom asks Michelle, “Is your end goal to leave here with an engagement.”
Michelle hedges and says, “I’m…just going to do what feels right.”
His mom says she doesn’t want Nayte to feel pressured. “He’s never been in a relationship where it’s like I want to make this a forever deal.” She says she worries he’s been “swept up in the process.”
Nayte tells his mom he’s not ready to propose to Michelle.
Then, in even more concerning moments, Nayte’s stepdad tells Michelle Nayte has never been in love before and that he doesn’t know the difference between being in love and being married.
“I don’t know if he can handle this. I don’t know if he’s going to get to that point [engagement],” his stepdad continues.
Nayte tells his stepdad everything feels so new.
“If it’s so new, how do you know it’s real?” his stepdad asks.
“Charles, why you gotta do this to me?” Nayte asks.
I’m kinda Team Charles all the way. He’s not here for the bullshit.
Nayte points out that he and his stepdad don’t talk about this stuff, and his stepdad agrees.
“I don’t say it a lot, I don’t hug a lot, but never, ever doubt that I’m proud of you and I love you,” he says.
Nayte tells Charles he loves him for the first time ever.
After they leave his parents talk about how Michelle is more mature than Nayte, and that he’s not at the point where he could get engaged. So that’s great.
The next day Michelle says she’s nauseous because she’s not sure Nayte is ready to get engaged and “tonight is going to be the toughest rose ceremony yet.”
There’s no cocktail party, instead we go STRAIGHT TO ROSE.
Michelle says it feels like someone is standing on her chest. That’s a heart attack, Michelle. You need to go to the hospital.
In the end Rodney goes home, leaving Nayte, Joe and Brandon as her final three. Are you watching?