‘The Bachelor’, Season 20, Episode 9: In Jamaica We Say “I Love You”

Welcome to episode 9 of The Bachelor: Ben Is Sweet!

After Hometown Dates last week, we’re down to three girls – Caila, Lauren, and JoJo – and it’s finally time for boning on a tropical island, otherwise known as the week of Fantasy Suites!

This week is going to be a little different for the recap and the Live Tweets Edition, mainly because I was busy getting drunk with one of my best friends during the broadcast of the show, so I wasn’t able to capture all the tweetz I usually do for both posts. I still got some good ones for this post, but we’ll see how it turns out for the Live Tweets Edition in a coupl’a days.

NE-WAYZ: For Fantasy Suite dates, Ben is in Jamaica – at the Sandals resort, no less – which is obviously the perfect place to fall in love!

It’s also the perfect place to smoke some weed, listen to some reggae, watch a Midwestern dreamboat with big aspirations make cocktails for lonely rich chicks, get your groove back with a man 20 years younger and fine as hell, and try to ignore the abject poverty that lies just steps away from your all-inclusive resort!

That’s right, Ben – better test that bed to see if it’ll be able to hold up with all the straight-up Fantasy Suite bangin’ you’re about to do!

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I Still Don’t Care About Caila

Caila’s first up for the boning, and when she stands on some kind of dock and just stares out into the distance with a stupid smile on her face, it basically sums up everything that Caila is to me:

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Ben and Caila’s date is suuuuuuuper awkward and uncomfortable – they go for some floating river raft ride and they literally have the most awkward, stilted conversation ever, which makes me incredibly happy.

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Over jerk chicken (cause they’re in Jamaica, guyyyssss!) and coconut drinks, they talk about how it feels weird and awkward but that they don’t want it to feel weird and awkward, and Caila tells us that she feels weird because she can’t wait to tell Ben that she’s in love with him and is basically just waiting for the right moment. During the night portion of the date, Ben mentions that he noticed that she was acting weird earlier that day and she’s like, “I so appreciate the fact that you noticed that I was acting weird” and suddenly I flashed back to all the relationships of my teens and twenties when I purposefully acted weird so my boyfriend would ask me what was wrong but he didn’t and then I just got more mad and weird. But then I grew up! And I realized that if I wanted a guy to actually know that something was wrong, I had to actually tell him, in real words! Which is harder and not as fun or manipulative than feeling like he should just KNOW, but that’s what happens when you get older – relationships get way less fun and are a lot more work and it almost makes you wonder why you bother at all, until you realize that you won’t actually be able to sucker your little brother into taking care of you when you’re an old person so you should probably find someone rich and possibly dumb to trick into marrying you right quick because writers having retirement plans is like HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA the best joke ever.

During this romantic dinner I also notice how Caila starts every serious sentence with a deep breath and an “And…”. *deep breath* “And…it wasn’t until the last rose ceremony…” *deep breath* “And….I’ve been holding that back…” *deep breath* “And…I want you to think I’m deep and serious and thoughtful because I’ve premeditated every single move up until now so I hope this works, too…”

So then she tells Ben that she’s in love with him (*deep breath* “And…I’m in love with you…”) and to his credit, instead of doing the dick boy move by being all, “Thank you. I ADORE you, too” he just kisses her, which is basically like doing the same thing but nicer. So then they read the note inviting them to the Fantasy Suite written by “Chris Harrison” (LOLOLOLOLZ) and of course Caila is like, “We should take advantage of this” so they get in their swimsuits and go in the ocean while tons – and like, tons. TONS. Like, we GET IT, BACHELOR INTERNS – FIREWORKS MEANS SEX WE GET IT OMG – fireworks go off.

I do have to get Caila a *little* bit of credit for having THE MOST BANGING BODY EVER OMG –

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But also during this part, when they’re sitting on the bed, literally the only thing I can think about is how Ben is gonna be finger banging Caila later:

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Whatever…we’re all adults here, we know how this stuff works. Finger banging is just a natural, normal part of an adult relationship!

Anyway, they wake up the next morning and Caila is having a blast telling us how Ben can’t say that he loves her back, but he didn’t have to say it with words! It was just something that she felt! And that the next morning they were “both just comfortable, and at ease, and giddy” because they woke up “as a couple”, which is like HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA you are going to be SO HEARTBROKEN when he dumps you, babe.

And you deserve it, because you’re the worst.

Ben & Lauren Play With Sea Turtles Which Is Totally A Euphemism For Sex

For Ben and Lauren’s date, they help some British dude save a bunch of baby sea turtles. From what, you might ask? No one knows! Literally nothing is said about what they’re in danger from or why this important! “This date just means a little bit more because Lauren and I are actually helping turtles to survive, and that’s actually a very important thing,” Ben tells us, which basically is everything you need to know about this date. And probably also Ben?

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Oh, and that Lauren looks SLAMMIN in those denim cutoffs (even though she totally walks weird in them? I feel like she’s either bow-legged or she has hip dysplasia):

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So then after they save some turtles, they sit around and talk about how too good they think the other one is for them, which is really endearing to watch when you’ve been trolling on Tinder all day and it’s now basically your only dream for someone to be all, “You’re way too good for me, you could have any guy you want, please let me take you away from online dating forever.”

Anyway, night time is the right time to see a reggae band (cause they’re in Jamaica, guyyyssss!) and then talk about how much you’re in love with each other. Lauren tells Ben in the Fantasy Suite that she’s felt “this way for a long time, and I am completely in love with you. And you really are the man of my dreams.” She tells him that this is something she’s been wanting to tell him for a while, that this isn’t “something that is, like, new.” And THEN, he tells her, “I’ve known that I’ve been in love with you for a while, as well.” Which is like…WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT.

Okay, so there’s been a lot of articles and posts about this that came out earlier this week, but hardly anybody seems to have their facts straight (also, if anyone’s got the inside goods on how I can also get paid writing tons of Bachelor-themed articles for Bustle where I literally don’t have to know anything – nothing at all! – about what I’m writing about, please let me know because that seems like a super sweet gig), so lemme try and break it down for you – it’s been a big unspoken rule for the Bachelor series for a long time that the Bachelor or Bachelorette isn’t supposed to say “I love you” to someone until The Final Rose. The main reason this seems to have come about was because during the very first season, Alex Michael told Baby-Talk Trista on their overnight date that she was “the one”, but later picked Big Boobs McGee Amanda at The Final Rose instead. Which really painted both Alex and the show in a bad light, and for good reason, because it was admittedly a super douche move (though it also won Trista the nation’s sympathy and prompted the franchise to develop The Bachelorette series, so). Since then, there’s been chatter that you’re literally contractually obligated to keep your mouth shut about who you’re in love with + plan on proposing to until The Final Rose, but I feel like some Bachelors have confirmed this while others have denied it, so who knows. So whether or not Ben actually got fined / in big trouble for saying The Three Little Words Thou Shalt Not Say, we don’t really know that, yet. I DO suspect that him announcing that he’s now engaged on Good Morning America on Tuesday morning was either another rogue move by Ben or a premeditated PR save by the franchise, (and I’m going with premeditated PR save). Basically: Ben could possibly become the new Juan Pablo in the eyes of the franchise, but for totally opposite reasons.

Anyway! They kiss and it basically looks like they end up having sex the same bed where he boned Caila the night before…

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…except instead of thinking about finger banging like with Caila, I feel pretty sure that Ben likes Lauren enough to do that kind of “I love you” oral that guys do when they do actually REALLY love you. You know? Like the sweet and slow oral, the kind where they don’t care how long they’re down there! And you’re just lying there and thinking about how great that’s going to be, to have that for the rest of your life, never realizing that a year from now that kind of oral will just be a distant memory, because even though sex is still pretty great sometimes, you know that he sometimes refuses to do it just because he loves you more than you love him and so that’s his way of trying to get back at you even though if we’re being completely honest he’s really not that great at it, it’s more just an excuse for you to be able to lie there and relax while he does all the work for once. So then the fact that you don’t get pissy or hurt about the fact that he never gives you that just makes him even more resentful and angry, to the point where he literally brings it up after you guys have broken up and he’s asked you to meet for drinks to talk stuff over and you’re just like, “Yeah, I knew what you were doing the whole time. That’s why you were more in love with me than I was with you – because I’m smart and you’re stupid.” And then you do this and your entire life suddenly comes together in a moment of cosmic connectedness:


Anyway, the next morning they have coffee in bed together and it’s just like UGH YOU GUYS ARE PERFECT TOGETHER JUST GET MARRIED ALREADY –

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And it’s super telling because instead of Caila being the one to say “I love you” all the time, Ben is the one who says it to Lauren. But then Lauren calls Ben her “person” which bugs me because that seems to be a thing that everyone says now and it’s annoying.

Anyway. Ben and Lauren are getting married, y’all.

When The Hot Senior Cheerleader Starts Dating The Kinda Nerdy Sophomore: The Ballad of Ben & JoJo

Ben tells us that he feels a little weird about having such an incredible night with Lauren and feeling like his heart is still with her as he begins his date with JoJo, but he still needs to see where things are at with JoJo because he also has feelings for her. And this is super weird because one time I went on a date with a guy that I’ll refer to as The Bald-Headed Professor and we had a suuuuuuuuuper great date and when it was over I was like, “I want THAT one” but I still had a date the next afternoon with this other guy who was driving up from the cities (I lived in Spooner, WI at the time) to take me out to coffee. And he was nice and attractive but we really didn’t have a lot in common, and he also kind of did the verbal head-pat thing that guys sometimes do in conversations where they’re trying to not be super obvious about the fact that they would be totally fine if you just sat there and looked pretty while they did all the talking. So then: A week or so later, I wrote a blog post about the Bald-Headed Professor AND mentioned the coffee date with the other guy in the context of knowing I was psyched about the Professor after our big date but wanted to pace myself and was interested in seeing what this other guy was like, so I still went on the coffee date, etc, etc. And the other guy found the blog post and wrote THE MEANEST comment on it ever, basically ripping me a new one about how I was a terrible person who led him on and could have saved him the drive up if he would have known that I already liked another dude AND he also insinuated that I had probably already slept with the Professor (which…I mean. I had, because sex positive over here and the chemistry was right and it had literally been at least a year-long drought and I DESERVE TO DO STUFF THAT I FEEL LIKE DOING TOO) AND he also compared my writing and maturity to the 5 yr old boy I worked with.

Which, like…sorry, dude. Sorry that you were online dating and meeting someone for coffee and it wasn’t an immediate love connection. Welcome to life.

BUT – the real point of this story is that I was on Tinder earlier this week and swiped right on a dude who later msged me about going on a coffee date in Spooner, WI a few years ago with “an attractive and interesting blog writer named Amber” and I was like, “OH MY GOD IT’S YOU WHAT THE FUCK IS MY LIFE RIGHT NOW.”

So. Anyway. I get it, Ben! I totally, totally get it.

JoJo shows up looking totally banging and does her favorite move again –

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And I also have major respect for her outfit because at first you think you’re getting a lil’ sneak peak at her boob and then you realize it’s just her bikini top but it still makes you think about what her boobs might look like which is a super stealth date move and BRB I’ve gotta go shopping for the exact copy of this look –

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And then they hop into a helicopter and end up at a waterfall where we once again get to have major body envy over how slammin’ JoJo’s body is:

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Like, I’ll totally represent about the fact that when I was in my early 20s and had a minor eating disorder I might have looked close to how hot she looks in a bikini, but it’s never been a thing where I’ve been like, “Yeah, guys, this is how my body looks and it’s going to look like this all the time with a minimal amount of work so get at it.” Nope! Instead it was always a total fear-based proposition where I was like, “Enjoy this hot bod while you can, world, because the minute I even LOOK at an Oreo those jeans ain’t gonna fit no’ mo'” 

So they sit on a rock at the waterfall and just get right into it – JoJo tells him that it’s hard for her to tell him that she’s in love with him because she’s scared, and to us, she tells us that she knows she won’t have an answer from him and that he can’t say it back until the very end (heh). But she still sucks it up and tells him she loves him, and in a moment that surprises us all (I mean. Kinda? If we hadn’t seen any of the previews, I guess), he tells her that he loves her, too.

Her reaction is all of us: “What? Are you allowed to say that?”

And it’s kind of magical and amazing but also heartbreaking at the same time, because it’s obvious that she thinks he’s breaking the rules just for her, which she totally SHOULD think that, but of course we know that he’s not and that he already said it to Lauren, which makes it all feel…kind of cheap, you know? Like it would be miraculous if he broke the rules for JUST Lauren or JUST JoJo, but the fact that he told both girls…it means so much less, now.

And also, I really like JoJo, but I don’t really like her for Ben. I feel like JoJo is the cool senior cheerleader who’s used to dating college guys, and then she surprises everyone by dating the sophomore boy next door, which is sweet but also just makes everyone kind of wrinkle their brows when they hear about it because even though Ben is cute and nice, he hasn’t really earned a rack like that yet, you know? Like does he even know what to do with it? And then you kind of wonder if she’s just so tired of being taken advantage of by older guys named Chad and so maybe she just wants to be with a guy who actually worships her for once and knows that she’s too good for him and will therefore treat her with decency and respect, which is a legit thing to want to sometimes, you know?

Anyway, Ben never thought he could be in love with two women, but he is! And that’s how polygamy works, you guys.

They sit down to “dinner” and talk about her brothers and how awkward Ben felt at the hometown date and I zone out because I literally could not care less how Ben feels about JoJo’s brothers and vice versa. Then they finally go back to the room and find out they have their own hot tub, and of COURSE they do, because I kind of feel like the producers want to see JoJo in a bikini as much and as often as the rest of us do.

Which is fine with JoJo, because it just gives her another chance to pull out her signature move –

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…and then Ben bangs her on the same bed where he boned Caila and Lauren. Neat!

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Surprise! You’re Getting Dumped! 

Ben and JoJo sit in bed and eat watermelon (gross) the morning after, and JoJo brings up once again that her love language is Words of Affirmation and Ben gave her that and so she’s happy. Yay! Sorry that you’re not going to be happy in a couple weeks, but glad you’re happy now?

Ben leaves their Fantasy Suite so he can sit around and look confused as he thinks about how he told two women that he loved them –

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…and Caila decides to show up and surprise him because she misses him and wants to see him and remind him that a relationship with her is going to be fun and exciting and full of surprises!

Oh, it’ll be full of surprises, alright…

And this is literally MY FAVORITE PART OF THE ENTIRE SEASON, just seeing her run around the mansion and giggle and then look momentarily confused and maybe a little upset and then inwardly remind herself that she’s supposed to be a Disney Princess –

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…and so she smiles again and literally skips around like a fucking 5 year old –

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…and then runs up to Ben while we watch, every single one of us knowing that he’s NOT going to be excited to see her!

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Like, I LITERALLY could not have staged that screen grab above more perfectly if I tried.

So she “surprises” him –

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Lookit how happy he looks!

…and then we have to hear her tell us AGAIN that she just wants to remind Ben that a relationship with her would be fun and exciting and full of surprises. “We’re just two people who love each other. Crazy concept, haha!” and I am SO HAPPY THAT HE IS ABOUT TO DUMP HER I CAN’T EVEN PUT IT INTO WORDS.

So they sit down and he basically tells her that he told Lauren and JoJo he loved them but didn’t tell her because he wasn’t there yet. BYE GIRL BYE

And he says something about how she’s so great and means a lot to him and he would describe her as his perfect wife and for just a split second I take her side because guys always say and do that shit to make themselves feel better because they somehow think it will make us feel better but it doesn’t so just rip the bandaid off as fast as you can and be done with it already.

“I knew I was going to have to say goodbye to someone I was falling hard for, and it’s really hard to imagine saying goodbye to you.”
“That sounds like a line,” Caila says. And THERE SHE IS! There’s the real Caila, the one that would have been nice to have seen the whole entire time – a REAL person, who might actually be smart and real and not super sweet sugar fake all the time.
“I am going to miss you, Caila.”
“You don’t have to say that,” Caila says. “You don’t have to say that.”
“I know I don’t have to say that.”

Okay, then!

So Caila puts her Disney crown back on and tells him that she’s really enjoyed being here and getting to know him but it’s time to go, so he walks her out to the van. She gets in and then changes her mind and jumps back out.

“Wait – so did you know this week?” She asks. Translation: Did you know you were going to dump me before I let you into my cherry paradise? (Side note: “cherry paradise” is a term that my pal Kevin always used that would gross me the fuck out but it was one of those things that was so gross that it started to be funny after a while and so now I use it all the time so sorry if you’re grossed out but as the world turns and like sands through the hourglass etc etc)

Ben tells her no, that he felt really good about their date, but that being with the other two women made him realize how much farther back their relationship was.

So Caila and Ben hug and she gets into the van and cries her little heart out, and because I’m not a monster I won’t make fun of her for it here but yeah:

The Rose Ceremony Of UnCeremony

JoJo shows up to a plantation mansion that was probably the site of some colonial slavery bullshit and walks in to see Chris Harrison waiting to walk her out to the Rose Ceremony is going to take place. They talk briefly about her day with Ben, and she tells him that she told Ben she loved him and that he said it back. Harrison does a good job of acting like he’s still in control of everything, but when LAUREN arrives and tells him the same thing, the look on his face is priceless:


Lauren is like, “yeah, I was surprised” and Chris replies, “Yeah, I am, too.”

Oh boy.

So they both go out to wait for Ben, and I have to admit that the backdrop is legit beautiful:

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JoJo and Lauren have some awkward conversation about the fact that it’s weird that there’s only two roses left, and they begin to wonder where Caila is.

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Me, too, girl. ME, TOO.

Then Ben shows up and it’s obvious that Caila’s NOT coming. He gives a meaningless speech and then hands out roses to Lauren and JoJo, and it’s kind of weird when they all huddle together and pal around and cheers to each other still being there. #Polygamy


The End.

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Next week is the The Women Tell All, which is my FAVORITE part of the entire season, so cheers to THAT.

I’ll have the Live Tweets Edition out on Thursday or Friday (for real this time!), so check back for that. You can also follow me on Twitter, keep up wit’ my Facebook Page, or subscribe to my once-a-week email newsletter instead of hoofing it over here every other day to see what’s up). Until then, bachelor babes, keep it 100 on the hot tubs, bikinis, and wine-soaked tears!

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About Amber L.

Hi! I'm Amber. I've been telling stories with books and blogs since 2004. I also spent 10 years working as a behavior therapist, which I now put to proper use by publishing thought pieces and dissertations on '80s pop music and the defining TV shows of our current times ('The Bachelor', 'Vanderpump Rules', etc). I can also be credited with single-handedly ruining the city of Portland, OR just by moving here.

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