Welcome to another week in Sayulita! This episode of Bachelor in Paradise starts off with a little bit of déjà vu. The guys have the roses this week, meaning we have some new female blood coming down the stairs soon. Derek is on the market again, and pot-stirrer Kristina (seriously, does she have any other purpose this season?) tells Tayshia she pictures her more with someone like Derek than someone like JPJ. Someone solid. Someone with his sh– together. Tayshia says she was interested in him initially, but the way the beginning of Paradise shook out, they both got wrapped up with other people early.
Shortly after, Tayshia pulls JPJ aside and — here’s where the déjà vu comes in — basically has the same conversation with him that Katie had last week with Chris. She asks if there’s anyone he wants to see coming down the stairs, and he makes it clear that he’s only really interested in her and excited about her. She tells him he should “definitely go” on a date, and that she just wants him to be happy. He seems bummed like Chris was, but adopts an attitude like, “If that’s what Tayshia wants me to do, that’s what I’ll do.”
Enter Tahzjuan, from Colton’s season (I can’t believe I’ll know how to spell Tahzjuan by the end of this recap). She immediately sets her sights on JPJ, who tells her he has something with Tayshia. Tahzjuan does NOT care. Apparently it took four flights to get here and she lost her luggage, and she doesn’t plan on sitting around in Paradise. This is serious. She ends up asking him on the date, and he pauses to see about talking to Tayshia, but Tayshia’s busy watching the sunset. So he changes his mind about the chat and goes.
They end up having a great time. JPJ tries to eat the date food, to Tahzjuan’s abject horror. I’ve read that they’re not supposed to eat the food because it messes with the audio and looks bad on camera, not because they serve them crappy food. Although this scenario seems to be a little bit of both, and JPJ reprises the delightful cough-gagging we witnessed after he ate Jane’s tacos. Anyway, they end up cracking up about it and really getting along. JPJ says it’s the most he’s ever laughed, which kind of makes me depressed. Was he laughing that much? I didn’t think so. They dance and then go kiss in the water.
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Back at the beach, we get some TEA! A group is sitting in a circle talking about their worst kiss ever, and apparently multiple people, including Sydney and Tayshia, said theirs was Colton! YIKES. Thinking of Cassie during this trying time. To be fair, Tayshia does say he improved by the end of the season. And she says (with Derek in earshot…) that she was probably a good teacher.
The next morning, we check in on the solid couples: Clay and Nicole spent the night together. All’s going well there. Seems to be the same case with Dylan and Hannah, no drama. With Dean and Caelynn, though, we can’t say the same…
At the bar, Caelynn talks to Wells and Demi about her relationship with Dean. She’s understandably worried about his reputation, but also feels like the person she’s met doesn’t fit that old description. Demi tells her she needs to be strong and talk to him about his intentions.
She decides to have a talk with him, but it doesn’t go as expected. He basically says that he doesn’t see a relationship at the end of this. “I don’t want a normal life,” he tells her. He likes living in his van, he has no interest in going to dinner parties on Saturday nights and having emotional discussions. He tells her she’d be miserable as his girlfriend (player language if I ever heard it… but OK, Dean!). “It’s basically a ‘convince me otherwise’ situation,” he says. WOW. Same old Dean!
Caelynn is upset. But she’s not as upset as Tahzjuan’s about to be!
Our next guest arrives: Haley of Emily-and-Haley, the twins from Ben Higgins’ season. She has her eyes on JPJ — and what do you know? He’s happy to go on a date with her, too. I’m a little worried about him, though. When she took him aside to chat, she asked about the couples in the house, and he literally couldn’t come up with a name, even though Hannah and Dylan and Nicole and Clay have been attached at the mouths for weeks. He does seem extremely tired (remember how Tayshia said he took 12 naps a day?), so maybe that explains it a bit?
Anyway, before their date, JPJ says hi to Tahzjuan, but it seems like it’s almost an accident. The second he sees Haley he just goes, “Ah, there she is!” and doesn’t even give Tahzjuan another glance! I really don’t think he’s malicious in any of this, but wow, dude. Insensitive! JPJ and Haley ride horses on the beach, and he rubs sunscreen on her butt. He says she has “the looks of a movie star and the intelligence of a doctor.” A doctor? Now I know why he’s so strange. He clearly has never met a doctor in his life.
Tahzjuan is having a complete breakdown back on the beach. She gets sick from the heat (and asks for guacamole), she eats spaghetti in the pool, she has no friends, she can’t bear to look at the other couples having fun at the beach, and she just whines and cries the whole time. It’s extremely annoying. At this point I’m not sure who I can’t stand more, this new evil drama-causing version of Kristina or whiny Tahzjuan.
When JPJ and Haley get back, things are still bad. JPJ is exhausted and aloof, Tahzjuan is angry, and Haley somehow has more tact than either of them. JPJ and Haley literally sit at the bar with Tahzjuan (which producer made them do that?) while Wells asks how all the dates have gone. “I’m so glad you’re here, Haley,” Tahzjuan says sarcastically. “Just kidding. I was like, ‘Can I spit in her wine?'” Haley doesn’t find it funny. Tahzjuan says she and JPJ are seagulls and Haley is a pigeon. Dr. Haley cannot get over the fact that Tahzjuan doesn’t realize seagulls and pigeons are BOTH garbage birds. (Maybe Tahzjuan is more self-aware than we thought.) She leaves, Tahzjuan tries to confront JPJ, and he says he’s too physically and emotionally drained right now. You and me both, dude!
Finally, it’s time for the cocktail party. Caitlin sets up a “VIP Stagecoach” for Blake (just a regular cabana) and they dance. He says, “Right now you’re 100 percent getting my rose and I don’t see that changing.” He tells her she surprises him and he loves that.
Enter Kristina, who steals Blake away and tells him that if he’s not completely sure about Caitlin, giving a rose will just lead her on. “If you give her a rose, that validates her,” Kristina condescendingly explains. I don’t understand how Blake it buying this! She asks for his friendship rose again, and then he literally goes right back to Caitlin and says he wants to be honest, he’s not sure his feelings can get there, and he’s “not 100 percent sure” about his rose now. Caitlin finishes his implied sentence: “…after speaking with Kristina.” Then he has the audacity to ask, “I’m sorry if this seems like… are you blindsided?” DUDE. You said, “You’re 100 percent getting my rose,” then had one conversation with another girl and said you were “not 100 percent sure.” That’s practically the definition of blindsiding someone.
Elsewhere, Demi is hanging with JPJ, and Kristian comes up stressed out about seeing Demi with someone else. “No one else is a threat to you, but everyone is a threat to me,” she says. “My wounds are still fresh.” Demi points at JPJ, who is now doing cartwheels across the beach alone, and tells Kristian she has nothing to worry about. Kristian, you guys share an intro during the opening titles now. Your relationship is fine!
Speaking of JPJ, Tahzjuan and Haley are still fighting over him and throwing bird names at each other, but at least it’s helped JPJ make up his mind. He’s still interested in Tayshia.
Tayshia, on the other hand, is making her moves on Derek. He says he’s here to have a good time and find happiness, and she says she’ll show him a good time tomorrow… if she stays. Hint, hint. Derek takes the hint. The only sad part about this is how “brutal” it is for JPJ to watch. But kudos for Tayshia for seizing her opportunity.
Dean is stepping up for Caelynn, it seems. It’s her birthday (24! What a spinster! You definitely needed to come on a show to find a husband!), so he has everyone surprise her with a cake and singing and champagne. It would be cuter if he didn’t do a birthday thing for D. Lo last year, too, but oh well.
Finally, we pick up with Chris and Katie after their drama last week. It doesn’t seem like they’ve made any progress since we last saw them. Chris talks to Jen and tells her that she’d be a gamble because he does have a pretty solid relationship with Katie… but he’s a gambling man. Confusing. But then Katie comes over and talks to him, and restates again and again that she has feelings for him and wants to date him. He’s hesitant, so she asks, “Do you have any questions for me to help you gain clarity? I want this. Do you?” He says he can’t give her that answer right now and needs more time to think. Clock’s a-ticking, Chris! This isn’t an age joke. The rose ceremony is in like… minutes.
And, it’s time. Chris pops in to say he’s changing the rules (since Paradise is about finding love), and he’s going to let Demi give out the first rose. I wondered how they were going to do that! She gives it to Kristian, and now we’re off to the races. Dylan gives his to Hannah; Clay to Nicole; Mike to Sydney (can we see more of their relationship, please?); Dean to Caelynn; Blake to KRISTINA (are you kidding me, Blake?); Derek to Tayshia; JPJ to Haley, his consolation prize; and Chris… to Katie. I feel bad for Jen, but eh. She came late! Jen, Caitlin, and Tahzjuan go home. There’s always next year, ladies.
But we’re not quite done. Right after the rose ceremony, when everyone’s still basking in the afterglow, Dean thinks it’s the perfect time to pull Caelynn away for another talk. But something feels off. “I came here hoping to have a fun time,” he says in an interview. “I never expected to have as great of a connection as I do with Caelynn… She wants to be in a relationship, but I don’t know if I have that to offer her at the moment.” Uh oh. As he leads her away, she’s suspicious. “It’s still my birthday!” she reminds him. Let’s hope he keeps that in mind.
Bachelor in Paradise airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8/7c on ABC. It’s available to stream on Hulu.