‘The Bachelorette’ Made a Scarf-Wearing Harvard Snob Implode
On this week’s episode of the ABC reality series, Bennett Jordan, the series’ resident Harvard elitist, totally lost it. And it was a joy to watch.
One thing we can say for Bennett Jordan: He knew his Bachelorette brand from the start, from the moment he stepped out of a Rolls Royce into the balmy summer night in Palm Springs wearing a crisp white scarf.
Any seasoned Bachelorette fan could have told you from the beginning that Bennett, a Clark Kent-Patrick Bateman face morph who seems to derive his greatest pleasure in life from “casually” mentioning he went to Harvard, was never going to win this thing. (Although his Bachelorette run is not over, it’s not looking good—but more on that later.)
Still, over the past few weeks, Bennett has emerged as an unexpectedly fun character to watch—reliably amusing, often petty, and above all surprisingly oafish. Rarely in unscripted television have we seen someone so convinced of their own grandeur, all while being... so strikingly average. All of this made his implosion this week all the more amusing—and, if we’re being honest, somewhat satisfying.
Maybe it’s Bennett’s goofy antelope run that’s made him too dopey to hate with any real vigor. Or his dedication to bathrobes and face masks? Or his staggering collection of loafers—often worn without visible socks, naturally. Or maybe it’s because he sincerely says things like, “I crush life under pressure” and “I’m here for love, not for breastfeeding Noah.” Or maybe it was that sublime moment when our resident Ivy Leaguer misspelled “limousine” during a “Grown Ass Man” challenge. Regardless, the results are undeniable: It’s far too much fun loving to hate Bennett to actually bother hate-hating him.
But this week, Bennett officially crossed into villain territory—planting a kiss on a visibly uncomfortable Tayshia while she was blindfolded before later putting on a performance during a two-on-one date that could only be described as baffling.
The drama between Bennett and Noah first resurfaced during an art challenge this week. Asked to sculpt figures inspired by their relationship with Tayshia, Bennett, ever the wealth manager, built three tiny properties out of clay. “I didn’t get to the mountain retreat or the chateau in Paris,” he said, “but I thought that three houses was a good start.” (Were he a bird, one imagines this might be the moment when he would have extended some fancy plumage to further impress his mate.)
But Bennett was both surprised and annoyed when Noah called him privileged. (The nerve!) So after some more bickering, Tayshia postponed the cocktail party and pulled her warring bros aside for the dreaded impromptu two-on-one date—after which one or both of them will certainly go home.
“I’ve been a peacemaker all my life,” Bennett said. “Had I known that there was tension I would have nipped it in the bud!” But the “gentlemanly gift” that Bennett gave Noah before Tayshia arrived to their date, supposedly a peace offering, turned out to be anything but (and apparently, the Bennett Jordan School of Gentlemanly Gift Giving endorses offering to unwrap and explain your gift to the recipient who, for those keeping score, has said many times his chief gripe with Bennett is his condescending tone).
The “friendship gift” included a red bandanna, some old socks, and most importantly, a book on emotional intelligence—the latter of which, yes, Bennett also offered to explain to Noah, given that he believes the 25-year-old to be “deficient” in three of four categories listed in the book. (I’d explain the socks thing but it’s honestly not worth it; just know that it’s somehow an even crappier gift in context.)
“I’m not talking down to you,” Bennett insisted. “I did not have emotional intelligence at your age.” With the same gusto as a stepfather gifting 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens to an uninterested stepchild, he continued: “Sincerely, Noah, this book will be really, really helpful. These are tools that every woman is going to want to have in a husband and a father. I’m not trying to belittle you; I’m literally trying to level you up.”
As the tried and true saying goes, “TO BE CONTINUED...”
Until then, what can we say? Bennett’s image as a WASP prototype who’s too inherently silly to hate was never going to last forever, but it was fun while it lasted. Even if he does somehow manage to salvage this date and send Noah packing, the rest of the house hates Bennett enough that he does not appear long for this bubbled dating world. And at this point, the joke’s officially worn thin. Oh, well. There’s always The League.