SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched the Nov. 24 episode of “The Bachelorette.”
Sixteen men remained in hopes of pursuing titular Bachelorette Tayshia Adams on Tuesday’s episode of “The Bachelorette.” Those men reflected on the previous dates poolside, but were interrupted by the arrival of host Chris Harrison.
“Lesson learned [from last week]: Tayshia likes bold,” he said.
The statement became a challenge for the week, as each date asked the men to show their most confident — or vulnerable — sides. Ivan Hall, in particular, opens up to Tayshia Adams as the two shared a quiet one-on-one date, during which they discussed the impact of Black Lives Matter.
But first, things started as a group date, during which seven contestants competed for a chance to earn additional one-on-one time with Tayshia. Each man was prompted to write a song for the Bachelorette, in an attempt to impress her with their lyrics and confidence. Bennett Jordan rapped, Demar Jackson approached the situation with humor, but Ivan’s sentimental lyrics impressed her the most:
“There were 31 guys when this all started // Couple weeks later, the Bachelorette departed // Couple of nights later, Tayshia walked through the door // She was looking like an angel, my jaw dropped to the floor // It was the greatest feeling ever; I felt like a new man // I can see it now, we can have a beautiful life — you’re smart, sexy and passionate // And I can see you as my wife.”
Ivan was rewarded with the additional time, and the two spent the entire evening in Tayshia’s hotel suite.
“A date like this is really special to me. It’s comfortable and it’s fun and it’s in my place. This to me is the Friday night we would have if we were together,” she said.
This low-key evening was a rare break from Bachelorette norms, where a one-on-one usually comes with some kind of activity or task. The two played games, ordered room service and spent the evening inside. While their discussions ranged in topics, they discussed some of the least acknowledged topics on the show — including race and their experiences being biracial.
Ivan took the time to explain his past — including his brother, who was a young father and spent the first few years of his child’s life in prison. Ivan implied that his brother faced correctional brutality, which prompted a conversation on police brutality in the wake of George Floyd’s death.
“My brother went through some really dark times in prison,” he said. “I was the only person he would really open up to about the stuff that goes on behind there. It’s crazy stuff, you know, especially with George Floyd — and that’s police brutality and that’s something that really hit home for me. You can only imagine how much wilder it could be in prison.”
“My brother used to tell me stories about how the COs [correctional officers] literally beat him up,” he continued. “I felt so bad because my first question was like, ‘Well, Gabe, what did you do?’ It doesn’t matter. No matter what George did either way — or what my brother did — these people have a job to do and they need to do it right. They can’t just be hurting people for no reason, and so it made me check myself, especially this year, 2020. Because crazy stuff that’s happened this year with COVID and then George Floyd just changed me as a man, honestly.”
He also shared that he went to a school where “there weren’t many Black people” and that he would be called the n-word just when walking on campus. “It happened all the time to me in college. I remember that. That’s just not right.”
Tayshia shared her own experiences with being biracial: “I’m realizing that I’ve been trying so hard my whole life to blend in because I knew I was different,” she said. “I just remember hearing people yell ‘Black Lives Matter’ … it hit me more than I realize just because those are people in my backyard that I’ve been trying to prove for so long that I’m the same as them.”
The conversation was emotional for both, as they bonded over their shared experiences. Tayshia was excited about getting to get to know each other, and secured their relationship with a rose.
The next day proved to be more lighthearted, as a second group date was hosted for the six rejected music contestants. Former Bachelorette Becca Kufrin and former “Bachelor” contestant Sydney Lotuaco joined Tayshia in hosting a competition style of truth or dare.
The day portion of the date revolved around dares, while the evening portion was sponsored by truth. Bennett revealed that he was previously engaged, and Demar’s shared his fear of divorce, but Tayshia was most taken with Zac Clark — who shared his nerves in getting to know her.
“Zac and I have chemistry,” Tayshia said. “It’s intriguing to me because I want to get to know more about him but it also feels very comfortable, like we’ve known each other for a while.”
Zac received the group date rose.
On the continued theme of “boldness,” contestants Ben Smith and Ed Waisbrot separately made plans to seek out extra time with Tayshia. After the dates had completed for the week, they each tried to find her hotel room before the rose ceremony. Ben was successful, as he found her room and the two had a night of conversation, while Ed found himself on the other side of the resort at Chris Harrison’s suite.
Ben — who was chastised during his previous date for not being proactive enough — wanted to prove he was ready to prove himself. “You got your point across — you better believe I’m going to be the first one to grab your hand tomorrow and probably every other time I’m able to.”
The next night, Tayshia hosted a cocktail party before the elimination ceremony. While most men took the opportunity to secure their relationship and a rose, Noah Erb used the time to communicate a different message: He said that men were questioning Tayshia’s intentions after giving him a rose during last week’s date that he crashed. Tayshia — who was visibly upset — confronted the men and canceled the remainder of the party.
“If you guys think I’m just trying to start drama in the house for no reason because I simply have a connection with some people, ya’ll need to grow up,” she told them. “I’m a grown woman and I can base decisions based off what I want to do, and if you’re going to be questioning me, I’ll gladly walk you outside.”
Chasen Nick, Joe Park, Jordan Chapman and Kenny Braasch faced the reality of the lack of time, as they were sent home.
“The Bachelorette” airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on ABC.
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