2021 has been messy, loud and politically divisive. This season of “The Bachelor” is no exception. In season 25’s most dramatic episode yet, Sarah Trott left the show. Bachelor Nation is debating amongst themselves on Twitter, asking if Sarah was a victim of mean girls or a manipulator herself.
This episode started out with the host informing the girls that Matt James was a bit uncomfortable in the last episode of “The Bachelor.” Matt is a soft-spoken and shy individual, and felt anxious about being the target of so many women. This reality show is a taste of “Bridgerton”-era Victorian courtship. Daphne Bridgerton and Matt James have the shared struggle of being pursued by many aggressive suitors.
What better way to break the ice than a group date? The ladies were led to a stage where Matt James greeted them by reading Chris Harrison’s erotic novel. Information no one needed to know about Chris Harrison. Chile…
In a pearl-clutching and liberating feminist moment for the ladies, they lined up and read their own Wattpad-style erotica starring themsleves and Matt James. You can tell which girls used to write Harry Styles stories and shipped Draco and Harry.
A choice line from this uncomfortable read-aloud was from Serena Chew.
“All the things in my life that are lacking,” Chew rapped. “I know my man Matt James is packing.”
The readings were followed by tears of laughter and genuine bonding between the girls. Katie loved the sexual liberation of the room and many of the contestants described the group date as empowering and enjoyable.
Meanwhile, Sarah Trott was both scandalized and heartbroken during the reading. Feelings of hurt and jealousy arise with Sarah, who has previous issues of trust and faithfulness in relationships (she used to date G-Eazy).
In a classic “Can I Borrow Him For A Second?”, Sarah rudely interrupted Katie’s date, asking for a moment alone with Matt. Sarah cried and revealed she might be leaving the show. She was comforted and kissed by Matt.
Katie Thurson, otherwise known as the girl who delivered a monologue about her favorite vibartor, was rightfully upset.
Queen Victoria Larson, this season’s villain and fan-suspected industry plant, rampaged Sarah. All of the ladies expressed annoyance at Sarah, and Victoria especially delivered one-line zingers.
The skeptics of Matt James found ammunition right before his planned one-on-one date with Serena Pitt. He was late to the date because he was comforting Sarah. The visual optics of Matt, the Republican, spending time in favor of a victimized White girl as opposed to his date with a woman of color played into the rumors that he doesn’t date Black women or women of color in general. Many fans see a pattern of Matt ignoring and eliminating women of color and clueing that he finds the White women either prettier or more entertaining.
Halfway into the episode, after a particularly nasty confrontation with Queen Victoria, Sarah is upset and in her room crying. The harsh language of the girls calling out Sarah’s time with Matt blurred the line of arguing and bullying.
Katie, in a standout moment, is the bigger person and has a heart-to-heart talk with Sarah. Sarah reveals that her father has cancer and she feels very vulnerable away from him. Katie’s father passed away in 2012, and this news hurt her. She understands Sarah’s pain and encourages her to spend time with her father.
She told the women avenging her interrupted date that they were misjudging Sarah.
“Stay classy in this process,” Thurson said.
Sarah went to Matt once again to inform him that she would be leaving the show. They had a tearful goodbye, and Matt told her how regretful he was about her situation. He liked Sarah, and was upset to see her bullied off the show. Sidenote: Sarah’s story of bullies was a shady way to snitch out the women to Matt, and differed from how she explained herself to Katie. Some fans found this manipulative
Rating: 4 stars for drama and Katie being the real queen the whole episode.