The Bachelor – Week 6

[tense music]

Because there’s not much going on in the world right now, we’ve been anxious for the MJ and Jessenia showdown. It’s as expected: more drama and more lies, with another two-faced antagonist eliminated. Matt even fakes MJ out by holding up the rose and saying, “MJ…I can’t give you this rose.” Guess he learned something from being an athlete.

We first see Abigail at the start of the cocktail party, when the girls are talking as they wait for Matt. Chris shows up instead, informing them that Matt wants to skip the cocktail party as he knows what he wants to do. The girls freak out.

At the Rose Ceremony, Abigail is in the back row again. She already has a rose from last week, so we can relax.

During a commercial break, ABC airs an ad: “Now casting seniors looking for love. Go to” So many questions…

First 1:1

Now there’s 11 girls left. Five have had a one-on-one, six have not. Pieper gets the first 1:1. But first, more drama. Serena C. is fed up with Katie, so she seeks her out. This devolves into an argument. The other girls are in sleeping bags by the fireplace when they hear the arguing. The first sign of this is when Abigail looks up quizzically. Sure, it’s got to be loud because the deaf girl can hear it.

There’s an interlude when a girl drives up to the property in a white van. She introduces herself as Heather Martin and says she’s there for Chris. She was on Colton’s season and is good friends with Hannah Brown, who spent time with Matt in quarantine and says he’s the perfect match for her. She wants to meet him. Chris acts surprised, laying it on thick: “This is just bizarre. Just when you think you’ve seen it all.”

Pieper and Matt walk through a forest in the dark, holding lanterns. She flips a switch and sees their very own carnival, all lit up. Somehow they fit that in plus a dressed up dinner. Sadly, her family doesn’t communicate love. She tries to overcome this by telling Matt she’s falling in love with him.

I’ve lost track of how many women have now said this to him. It’s ridiculous, especially when you consider how little time they actually get with him. Ashley I. said on Instagram that the amount of solo time they typically get with the lead during group dates and cocktail parties is about 10 minutes. And each episode usually comprises four days!

Obviously, they’re in a constrained environment without other distractions. Naturally this will make Matt the focus of all their thoughts. But he’s looking like less and less of a prize. He was partying with Tyler C. (his best friend from Hannah’s season) in Tampa all weekend – maskless. He’s being called Covid Matt. Supposedly his mother is a big Trump supporter and he’s a Republican. [If you are too, you can find another blog to follow.]

Group Date

Abigail is again part of the group date. When the girls show up, Matt is wearing a bowling shirt and skinny jeans that look like leggings. Not a fan. Abigail tells the camera, “I can’t control whether I get a 1:1 date, but I can control, you know, what we spend our time talking about.” She adds, “Matt and I had a spark the first night and we had potential, but we need time.”

If you can’t figure out the date from Matt’s attire, find another blog to follow. The date is bowling, with pizza, nachos, and wings. Abigail looks around and smiles. This is a much better group date than outdoor obstacle courses. But this does involve a competition, as Chris shows up to tell them the winning team will get a romantic evening with Matt. The losing team will walk home in the rain.

Abigail is on the blue team, aka the Blue Bombshells. The opposing team in pink shirts is the Pink Petals. “I have been on the losing team,” Abigail says. “I’ve had to walk home, so we are not losing this. We’re gonna win. There’s no way I’m gonna lose twice.” She goes first on her team, and shows spunk as she walks to the lane. Unfortunately, she only knocks down one pin.

The Blue Bombshells are down by a lot, but they battle back and it literally comes down to the last few frames. Abigail is the last to bowl for her team. Serena P. — on the other team — says, “Abigail, I love you, but gutter.” Did Abigail hear this? Was this taking advantage of her hearing loss?

Abigail gets a gutter ball. “My team is going home, and with the pressure of hometowns being in a few weeks, it’s frustrating when you have that potential and then you can’t explore it, like, you just have to wait and wait,” Abigail says. “I-I-I don’t know, I’m just, I’m not getting any time. It’s not even a little time. I’m just not getting any time.” She gives Matt a good hug good bye.

Back at the house, she says, “I’m not even upset yet, like, I’m just angry.” She tells the other girls, “It sucks getting that First Impression rose, seeing that potential, and then week after week, you know, just…waiting. It’s just like… how am I supposed to take this seriously when I can’t even get time?”

But then Chris delivers a personal date card. Matt feels terrible and needs time with them, and invites them to join the party. The girls erupt in shrieks and cheers. Abigail bounces up and down on the couch.

During Matt’s speed make-out sessions, Serena P. says she’s falling for him. The girls say so many of the same things; it must be hard for him to differentiate. Then again, this is a guy with a thigh fetish. Michelle gets the date rose.

Katie’s 1:1

Before Matt’s date with Katie, he gets some bro time with Tyler C. as they play pool. Katie does the patented run and jump when she sees Matt. They meet at a spa, but they won’t be partaking of any services. Instead, they’ll be pranking Tyler, whose masseuse is actually an actress who will be following their commands. Tyler checks himself out in the mirror before he gets on the massage table, confirming my impression of him.

At their dinner date, Matt holds the rose while he tells Katie he’s letting her go. What a tease. Now she’s the favorite to be the next Bachelorette. Either way, she’s better off.

Cocktail Party

In a fancy dress, Heather drives up to the chateau because she’s quarantined and has been allowed to join the show. At the chateau, Abigail is the first one Matt grabs. “Can I steal you, Abigail?” he asks. She laughs and apologizes, I’m guessing because she didn’t realize at first that he was talking to her.

“Look at you!” Matt says. She’s in a gorgeous green dress with a plunging neck.

“I just really enjoy time with you and I just want to reiterate that to you every time that we’re together that I look forward to seeing you every night,” he tells her. They kiss and hold hands in the precious <10 minutes they have.

Heather struts into the chateau, smiles at the girls, and takes a hard left to find Matt. Poor Pieper, whose conversation with Matt is rudely interrupted when Hannah walks in. Matt busts out in laughter because he can’t believe his good fortune. The women, they just keep coming!

The previews show Heather crying and complaining about how mean everyone is. In the end clip, I see what looks like a bald spot on the back of perfect widdle Matt’s head.

Abigail is now officially in the top 10. I’m rooting for her to get more screen time while also hoping she doesn’t “win” this pathetic contest.

‘The Bachelor’ – Week 5

This “dramatic new episode” opens with nature shots. No, not Matt’s bare chest again, but actual footage of the world outdoors.

Making the House Safe Again

There’s a divide in the house: the Original Girls (OG) vs. the new ones, or JV vs. Varsity, as coined by MJ. Whatever you call them, the house is tense. Matt addresses the mob mentality and culture of bullying at the start of the Rose Ceremony. “If you’re having to belittle someone else for you to shine, then those aren’t the qualities I’m looking for in my wife,” he says. “It sucks ‘cuz I don’t get enough time with you all, and now I gotta deal with this.”

It’s a tough job, Matt, but someone’s gotta do it.

Needless to say, there’s actually drama in this dramatic episode. Girls are apologizing and backpedaling any negative comments they’ve made. One girl rightly describes the goings-on as “kiss-assery.” Anna — who spread a rumor about Brittany being an escort — is let go. Instead of doing the same with Victoria — the most toxic person in the house (and also the one with the worst fashion sense) – Matt makes us sit through another Rose Ceremony where she doesn’t get a rose. If she can’t figure out how to wear a bra with a dress, it’s no wonder she’s so deluded about her own toxicity.

Sad Abigail

Rachael gets the first 1:1 date. Abigail is sitting next to her when she finds out. She smiles and looks pleased for Rachael, which is a breath of fresh air after all the drama.

Rachael gets to try on fancy dresses with celebrity stylist Ty Hunter. Meanwhile, the Group Date card arrives and through process of elimination, it’s obvious Kit has the next 1:1. Everyone else is disappointed, including Abigail.

“I’m disappointed, um…I mean…[somber music] I think I’m just getting a little confused,” Abigail says, as Magi puts her arm around her in consolation. “Just, you know, we’re already halfway through this, and…yeah.”

Abigail then tells the camera, “It just kind of makes me question a lot of things, like does he not want that 1:1 time with me? Does he not want to explore that relationship? I don’t know. It’s like reality’s just slapping me in the face right now.”

Rachael’s a Good Actress

During Rachael’s evening date, Matt asks why she hasn’t been in love before. Ironically, even though he described her as being super confident, she tells him she doesn’t have a lot of confidence in herself. Rachael is the first to outright tell him she’s completely falling in love with him, and he says he feels the same way. They go for a ride in a horse-drawn carriage, because there’s nothing like smelling animals and manure when you’re on a romantic date.

Group Date on a Farm

But at least Rachael isn’t on the group date that goes to a farm! The producers didn’t even warn the girls to dress appropriately. Abigail’s wearing a white or off-white top – and it’s a rainy day. Even though Matt lives in NYC, he grew up in Raleigh, NC, and on farms so he’s a country boy at heart. He wants to see how doing farm chores will bring out their true selves. Yeah, there’s nothing like shoveling manure, collecting eggs, or milking animals to prove your worth.

MJ catches Matt making out with Pieper, not even secretly, and all the women are insanely jealous. Abigail tells the camera, “It’s definitely settling in that we’re all dating the same guy, and it’s hard to see the other women have that connection with him.”

That evening, Serena C. says she would have had a better outfit if they had said to dress for a farm. Abigail agrees and with a thumbs up, says, “Yeah, my boot got covered. Covered!”

To the camera, a dejected-looking Abigail says, “We’re halfway through this process and I definitely cracked a little bit. I feel like my connection just isn’t as far along as the other girls, so the time that I get I need to make it meaningful. I don’t want to miss, like, a great opportunity to take our relationship to the next level.”

Abigail’s Serious Conversation

Abigail finally gets serious screen time – in more ways than one. Matt asks what she thought about the day. “My grandparents actually have a farm,” Abigail says. “I’ve never been on it, but I was like, oh, I can finally understand like what my grandparents are going through, but honestly, I was kind of defeated. I know, like, we joke around a lot, like, obviously, like about the group dates and stuff, but…”

“What’s wrong?” Matt asks.

“I mean, nothing’s wrong,” she replies. “I think there’s just something about you, like I’m super excited, um, I don’t know. I literally get like the biggest smile on my face when I’m around you, but I also wanna be as open with you through this process. I guess my biggest fear has become that I’m gonna disappoint you. You want a wife and you want a family, and you know I want those things too. But you know if I were to have a family, um, there is a really strong possibility, you know, that…my kids would be deaf. My birth dad did walk out on my mom and my sister right after we got our cochlear implants. In no way do I, you know, view my hearing loss as baggage, but when you have, you know, what should’ve been one of the most important people in your life…[gentle music] you know, walk out, it’s hard not to feel like you know, if I fully open myself up to somebody, are they gonna do the same thing?”

“Can I tell you something?” Matt asks. “I can’t imagine what that’s been like for you, but I can relate to not having a dad growing up and having a single mom who raised me and my older brother. But it’s not something that, like, I’m ashamed of, because…it’s made me who I am, and the things that you’re seeing as a barrier and a roadblock, these are things that I look at you and I admire about you and are encouraging to me about what a future with you would look like. And that’s how I feel about you.”

“Yeah, ok, I feel a lot better.”

[Romantic music]

Make-out session ensues.

Matt tells the camera, “It was extremely courageous of Abigail tonight to share that with me. She was extremely vulnerable with me and opened up about things that keep her up at night and some of the things she worries about and ultimately things she would want to share with her husband. I’m looking for someone who’s going to push me, challenge me, and make me a better person, and I think Abigail does that.”

After Abigail rejoins the group, Katie notices her ear-to-ear grin and says, “You look happy. Did you have a good time?” Abigail hunches her shoulders and gives a crinkly nod.

In Matt’s preamble to giving out the Group Date Rose, he says it’s going to someone “who was extremely vulnerable with me tonight.” It’s Abigail! She smiles and brings her hands to her face in pleasant shock.

BLESS ABIGAIL GETTING THE ROSE ON THE GROUP DATE! Well deserved. 👏🏻👏🏻 #TheBachelor #Bachelor

Originally tweeted by Simona (@simona_ka) on February 2, 2021.

Why Abigail’s Conversation Is Important

I write about this in depth for Hearing Like Me, but as one of Abigail’s longest scenes, it’s an important one. We need more speaking deaf representation, and here’s one in all its glory. Many people don’t realize this, but culturally Deaf people actually want their children to be deaf. Why would I want my kids to go through hardship and struggle? It’s a whole different world today, yes, with cochlear implantation happening at earlier ages. But it still requires work and dedication. You’re still deaf when the cochlear implants are off. You still have to deal with technology and its challenges, and of course all the costs related to that.

All parents should want their kids to have easier and better lives than the previous generation. Ironically, I was so worried about my kids being deaf that I didn’t consider anything else. They’re hearing, but they both have celiac disease, and my daughter has a second autoimmune disease. Those are arguably scarier and health-threatening than being deaf.

At any rate, it’s important for potential spouses/parents to have open communication and discuss possibilities. I had a conversation with my now-husband about the possibility of our kids being deaf. As an engineer, he was focused on logistics. If our kids were deaf, we’d have to move to an area where there was an oral school or program. That was his only concern.

My friends received similar responses from their significant others, who see how independent and successful we are as speaking deaf adults and didn’t think it was a big deal. Of course, we know how much work we and our parents put into it, but at least we’d be experts.

I also have lots of questions about her dad leaving. Why did he leave after Abigail and her sister got cochlear implants, as opposed to when their deafness was diagnosed? I’m sure there’s more to this story.

I hope that Abigail’s deafness isn’t the focus going forward. I get that she had to introduce it in the first episode, and the conversation in this one was necessary. But now the editing shouldn’t single it out. She has a disability, but it’s not her whole identity. Don’t make her into the token deaf girl.

The Rest of the Episode

Now that Abigail has her rose and her big scene, we don’t care about the rest of the episode as much, do we? Kit’s 1:1 is cooking dinner at Matt’s house, which is meaningful to her. She tells him she’s built up so many walls over the years because her mom’s a fashion designer (Cynthia Rowley) and she grew up in the spotlight. Yet she sought the spotlight by being on this show. Whatever, little Miss Rich Girl. You’re only 21 and we don’t need to see tongue when you make out with Matt.

Meanwhile, there’s still one more person in the house who’s adding to the toxicity: MJ. There’s a showdown between her and Jessenia, but we don’t see all of it because the producers want us to come back next week.

By the way, if Abigail doesn’t “win,” she’s one of the fan favorites to be the Bachelorette. Now THAT would be amazing!

The Bachelor – Week Four

“A shocking new episode of The Bachelor starts right now!”

ABC is known for its hyperbole when it comes to this show. Every episode is shocking or dramatic. But this one actually fits the bill.

Abigail’s Group Date

Abigail’s group date — which should have aired last week — is finally shown. The evening date with seven women makes me think of a good drinking game. Every time someone says “like” as a sentence filler – not describing how they feel for someone – take a shot! On second thought, don’t. You’ll end up hospitalized!

Matt asks Abigail, who’s outfitted in a classy orange dress, “Up until this point, is this what you thought it would be before you got here?” Abigail responds, “I honestly didn’t think I was going to make it past the first night. Just the fact that, like, you saw me and, like, we hit it off, like, I’m still riding, like, on that high, to be honest.”

Yep, unfortunately Abigail isn’t exempt from, like, overusing the word “like.”

Abigail’s hair, by the way, is in a ponytail. I find myself looking for her cochlear implant. Actually, every time she’s on screen, I look to see if she’s showing her CI. A deaf friend shared that she does this too.

At the end of the evening, Matt tells the group there was a lot he liked. He calls out Abigail: “What you shared about what you were looking for, it really resonated with me.” But Chelsea gets the date rose instead.

When Matt says he’s going to leave, he turns around so he’s facing the group when he talks. I think he may have started talking before he turned around. Everyone should be thinking about how to include Abigail; I certainly hope Matt is one of them.

Abigail gives Matt a thumbs up and afterwards, tells the camera, “No, I’m super happy for Chelsea, but it is disappointing. I mean, you want that rose. It means you’re safe until next week. I think it will be intense tomorrow at the Rose Ceremony. Who knows how many people are gonna be sent home. And I just feel like there’s a storm, like, waiting to brew.”

Rose Ceremony

When the women are sitting around during the cocktail part, someone behind Abigail says something. Again, I wonder if Abigail hears and understands.

[quirky dramatic music]

Yep, the captions say that, for real. Props to whoever’s doing the captions for this show!

The Rose Ceremony is shaken up when Chris tells Matt that they had a record response from women who wanted to be on the show when he was announced as the Bachelor. So, because there are more “incredible women” that are dying to meet him and want a shot at falling in love with him, they’re arriving right now.

One of them — Brittany — wants to make up for lost time and immediately makes out with him after she introduces herself. Well, then. Game on.

Naturally, the other women are pissed, frustrated, disrespected, shocked, experiencing PTSD from Night One, you name it. Many still haven’t had much time with Matt, and now they’ll have to fight with these new girls for it. Abigail tells another woman, “And if it’s a small thing like this that shakes me, I’m just like, I don’t know…” Indeed, they’re all rattled.

Thankfully, Abigail — who’s in the back row on the far left again — gets a rose. It’s hard to tell if she does the ear signal; it looks like she’s just tucking her hair behind her ear.

Another Group Date

The Date Card says: “Let’s fall in love…” Abigail is on this date, along with three of the new girls. But first, Ben Higgins, former Bachelor, talks with Matt at the house. He’s planned the day, apparently, and will be alongside Matt the whole time. Oh good, I feel so much better now.

It really must be difficult coming up with dates during COVID. This date is an obstacle course called Fall in Love Fest. First, they get in large pumpkin boats and row across the lake to where Matt is. Next, a foot race to Squirreling Around, where they put on a squirrel costume, find an acorn, carry it like a squirrel, walk across a balance beam, drop the acorn in a bucket, and then it’s a foot race to the finish. The winner gets a “very special prize.” Their dignity?

I wonder if Abigail’s CI is waterproof. I sure hope so, because it’s always risky being on or near a large body of water.

Mari wins the race – like you care.

Shit is stirred during the after party. Anna says there’s a rumor that Brittany is an escort. They’re both from Chicago and people have gone out of their way to tell Anna to watch out for Brittany, etc. This raises many logistical questions and leads me to think the truth is that a producer fed this to Anna. She directly addresses Brittany, who denies the rumor.

Matt gets to know the women by always stroking their bare thighs during their conversations.

Date with Michelle

Michelle, one of the new women, gets the 1:1 date. It goes well and they seem like a great match.

But many are wondering why Abigail hasn’t had her 1:1 yet. My friend Eileen is pissed about this. “A lot of other Bachelors and Bachelorettes have given out their First Impression Rose and asked their pick on a one-on-one date very soon afterwards because they were so intrigued by the person and wanted to get to know the person more and see if the connection was really there,” she says. “Three weeks in and Abigail hasn’t gotten her one-on-one yet?? Seriously?? I’m starting to feel like it was ‘props for being the token deaf girl here.'”

Eileen tells me there’s an actual website that has all the First Impression Rose recipients. A lot were eliminated in Weeks 4-8, but some were runner ups. “I guess I just figure if you’re really impressed by someone and their ability to open up, wouldn’t you wanna get to know them more, and not just give them [the First Impression Rose] because they were ‘brave’ or something to talk about being deaf?” She admits she could be reading too much into this, but it’s an annoying, nagging feeling. I agree!

Interestingly, a friend told me today she was reading a blog from a former contestant who said they take a break from the First Impression recipient, but we know Abigail’s one-on-one is coming.

Battle for the Bachelor

There’s an obligatory bare chest scene with Matt working out in the forest. Alas, his shirt is back on when the group shows up. For this group date, Matt tells the women that being physically fit and active is an important part of his lifestyle. So former five-time boxing champion Mia St. John shows up to help train the women to fight each other in front of a live audience. I’ve never heard of her, but the women are all excited. Guess someone is also training them on how to act.

Surprise, surprise, the live audience is just the other women in the house. There’s a real boxing ring, and the women go at it. Eventually, Matt calls the fight because it was getting dangerous instead of about having fun. Like ABC didn’t know what would happen!

Back at the house and during the after party, the women trash the new arrivals. Anna and Victoria in particular have a conversation that’s mostly bleeped out. Katie tries standing up to the bullying unsuccessfully and ends up telling Matt about it. She suggests that he address it in front of everyone the next day. “That someone in the house thinks they’re going to be able to bully their way into my heart, that’s not how it works,” Matt says. “I’m going to get to the bottom of it.”

Thumbs Up

This tweet is so true! Abigail is normal compared to many of the other women. Clearly, this is why she’s not featured with all the drama. I’m ok with it!

The Bachelor – Week 3

This episode has no shortage of drama. You might as well call this episode The Sarah Show. It picks up where the last left off, with Sarah fainting during the Rose Ceremony.

As the women talk among themselves, I wonder how the producers determine their placement. Why would they place Abigail in the second row with a more potentially obstructed view?

When Chris comes in to announce the final rose, I remember another reason why I stopped watching this show. We all know it’s the final rose, Chris!

This week there’s three dates: two group dates and one “unbelievable romantic 1:1 date.” The Bachelor is known for nothing if not its hyperbole. I do feel for these women, who are stuck at a Pennsylvania resort because of COVID. Dates in past seasons are much more exciting and over the top, and eventually they travel to exotic locales. Then again, these women are still on national television and getting an escape from their every day lives.

Group Date

Apparently Matt needs to be pushed a little bit. He has trouble feeling uncomfortable, so the point of the group date is to be uncomfortable. When the group (sans Abigail) walks into the room, Ashley I. (past contestant) is reading an erotic scene from Chris’ book, The Perfect Letter. Turns out the women have to write their own sexy love story with Matt, sharing with the rest of the group and a live studio audience.

The live studio audience sounds scary but it ends up being the other women in the house. They’re seated in the back of the room. Abigail is shown at the beginning of this scene, and then we don’t see her until she’s at the house. A deaf friend and I independently wonder how Abigail is able to follow the women reading their stories on stage. I always sit in the front or near the front at things like this whenever possible. Maybe she can hear well with her CI, but then why would she talk about lipreading so much? Is the show not accommodating her like they should? Or is she not advocating for herself?

Katie tells the camera that she loves watching and hearing Matt talk, with his juicy lips. Ironic that it’s not Abigail saying this!

Back at the House

During the conversation at the house, when the camera pans over Abigail, she’s looking down as usual. Does it help her listen better? Or do they always just happen to catch her that way?

When there’s a knock at the door, Abigail tells the camera, “My heart just sinks every time I hear that knock [so I guess she does hear it?]. I really want that date card. I just feel like other girls are getting that time with him, exploring relationships with him. I just need more time at this point. I think the connection is there. It’s super easy to talk with him when I see him, but you can only do so much with so little time.”

Alas, the next date is a 1:1 for Serena P.

The Sarah Show

Sarah is having a difficult time on the show because she’s developed feelings for Matt, who’s dating 32 women. She can’t deal. She interrupts him on the group date, which pisses off the women because now they’re denied their time. Some don’t get to talk to him at all, because the producers must have told him he had to leave to ensure this drama.

Sarah hides back at the house, so Matt checks on her when he shows up for his date with Serena. Their date involves horseback riding, a picnic with donkeys, a dinner, and then making out in a hot tub. You know, the usual. Meanwhile, everyone at the house is bashing Sarah, who continues to hide in her room.

When the third date card shows up, Sarah finally makes an appearance. She apologizes to the women, explaining that she was thinking of leaving and had to talk to Matt, yada yada yada. The women push back. Abigail speaks up as a voice of reason: “So if you don’t want to be here, why are you taking someone else’s rose that really does wanna be here and trusts that process?”

The episode continues with the women bashing Sarah. When Katie checks on Sarah, we discover that while we knew her dad has ALS, he only has weeks to live. Yes, it’s time to go home, Sarah dear! [ETA: A friend read Reality Steve’s recap and reported that Sarah had a boyfriend right before she went on the show. She doesn’t live with her parents and isn’t her dad’s caretaker. Oh, and her dad is still alive, which is great. But this kind of misrepresentation shouldn’t be required for reality TV!]

When no one has seen Sarah for the third day in a row, Abigail says, “If she doesn’t show on the group date, I feel like that’s a big red flag for Matt.” The others agree. Then they find out Sarah has decided to leave. There’s a dramatic goodbye with Matt, and the episode ends before even showing Abigail’s group date. So now I’m pissed at Sarah too. Next week, five new girls show up.

But for now, Abigail is still there, looking rosy!

‘The Bachelor’ – Week 2

I stopped watching The Bachelor a long time ago, but got drawn in again because of the first deaf contestant, Abigail Heringer. I wrote about the first episode of Season 25 for

As long as Abigail is on the show, I’ll blog about her here. Future posts will go up on Tuesdays.

Abigail doesn’t get as much air time in week 2, but she stands out in her scenes.

Shout Out From Chris

The second episode opens with Matt James’ [running footsteps] and [tranquil music] as he gets some necessary exercise. After all, he has to keep his stamina up if he’s dating multiple women. But first, he must indulge the viewers in a gratuitous (outdoor) shower scene. It’s so natural that he even wraps a towel around his waist and goes back in the house without drying himself off.

In their house, which they jokingly refer to as the Matt-eau, the girls are all sitting around when host Chris Harrison walks in. “Where’s my girl Abigail?” he asks. “I’m over here!” she says. “Oh, you’re tucked in the corner,” Chris says. “You got the First Impression Rose! Congrats!” One of the women adds, “And she got the first kiss!” “Congrats on both of them!” says Chris.

Hmm. And here I thought Chris was looking for Abigail to make sure she’d be able to lipread him. But no, he’s here to announce that there will be three dates this week: one group date, and two one-on-one dates.

Group Date

While Bri is on the first 1:1 date, there’s a knock at the door back at the Matt-eau (yes, it’s as painful to write as it is to say). This is always a signal for the next date card. I, of course, wondered how Abigail was clued in. Ileana reads off the names of the girls going on the group date. And the names keep coming. There’s a total of 18 women going on this date, the largest group date in Bachelor history. <sarcasm> Naturally, Abigail is one of them, because it’s an ideal environment for a deaf person. </sarcasm>

What’s that sound? Fireworks popping outside. Again, who tells Abigail (or can she figure it out for herself?)? The women go outside to watch and muse that Bri and Matt are probably making out. How’d they guess?

One women thinks the group date will be a s%*t show. She’s right. Because all the dates have to be outside for some reason, they carry umbrellas as it’s raining. Good thing the show has enough, because cochlear implants shouldn’t get wet. Some are water resistant, but I don’t know what brand Abigail has.

Matt tells them that he’s confident he sees his potential wife in the group. Since he’s a visual person, he thought it would be fun to have a little photo shoot and visualize what that special day might look like with one of them. Right. He thought this, not the producers. Anyway, the women have 10 minutes to put on one of the wedding dresses and accessories inside. Maybe half of the group gets a photo taken with the groom, and some even get kisses in while the others watch. The whole thing is every bit as cringe-worthy as you can imagine.

Capture the Heart

Then Chris shows up. This always means a twist. He says to stay happily married takes a lot of hard work. Matt is looking for a woman who will truly fight for him. So even though half of the girls didn’t get a photo shoot, they all have to walk through a forest to meet up with Matt again. Is Abigail able to follow when Chris explains the game was Capture the Heart?

The women are split into two teams. There’s paint and other “weapons” like purses, and no rules. As the women discuss strategy, I wonder if Abigail is keeping up. How does she feel during the competition? She probably can’t tell as well as the others if someone is approaching. Is she worried about her CI coming off? When water is sprayed, what does she do? When the camera pans to her in a group shot, she isn’t looking at the person speaking. Was she relying on her hearing, or did she figure it doesn’t matter?

Alas, Abigail’s on the losing team. The wedding dresses get trashed. The winning team spends a “romantic, incredible night” with Matt, while the losers go home and “wonder who’s making out with Matt.”

Back at the house, the losing team tells the women there what happened. Abigail and her paint-splattered face starts it off, “Well, the red team won…” Later on in the conversation, as one person is talking, the camera pans to Abigail, who’s looking down. Is she following the conversation? Does she care?

Rose Ceremony

Abigail tells the camera that going into the rose ceremony, she’s really really nervous. She’s excited to see Matt because she didn’t get to talk to him much this week after getting the First Impression Rose. “That’s why I just really want to talk to him and just kind of let him know that I’m here and hopefully keep that connection going,” she says.

She gets the first conversation with Matt (at least, that’s how the editing portrays it). They tell each other they’ve missed each other and how it feels like they haven’t seen each other in forever. She says they had such a good first night and then there was the group date, which is hard when you’re trying to date the same guy.

Then Abigail does something clever. She tells Matt she should give him a little signal – like she can fix her earring or pull her ear, and it’ll be like her blowing him a kiss or something. He can do it right back, she says. “Or I’ll stare at you the whole night and wait for you to catch my eye,” she adds. They work out their signal and it’s very cute.

Matt tells the camera that Abigail is one of the sweetest people he’s ever met. He doesn’t have to try hard to have a good time. The conversation flows and she makes him laugh. He helps her off the couch when their conversation is done. “You saw me struggling?” she laughs. No kiss – at least not one that’s shown.


Marylynn – a contestant involved in drama with the season’s villain, “Queen Victoria,” — tells Abigail that she can’t do this anymore. Abigail asks, “You want a hug? Come here,” and hugs her. Aw.

When Matt calls Abigail’s name in the rose ceremony, she pulls on her ear as she steps down. She used their secret signal! Alas, the camera doesn’t show us his reaction. Did he notice? Did he respond in kind?

The episode ends with a woman (Sarah) almost fainting and the medics being called. And those dreaded three words on the screen: “To be continued…”

As says in its episode recap, “Abigail, who melted Matt’s heart in the premiere, has managed to stay clear of the toxicity so far. Viewers saw much less of her on-screen Monday night because she didn’t score an individual date.”

At least we know Abigail is safe for another week!