The finale opens with a discussion of the remaining couples. Bri and Chris, Rudi and Matt, and Jamie and Trevor. The couples are boarding a flight to Nashville. It’s unclear whether the cast flew commercial or charter – but probably commercial because they only shot phone footage and, more importantly, this is Bachelor Presents: Listen to Your Heart. To recap, we have: the in-love couple (Bri and Chris), the best singers (Rudi and Matt, barely edging out Bri and Chris), and the charisma couple (Jamie and Trevor). Not to say that they all don’t have some charisma and some musical talent and arguably some level of love, but you know, these are their lanes.
Once the group lands in Nashville, Jamie has the opportunity to play tour guide because it is her current hometown. Chris Harrison brings the couples to an unnamed Nashville stage (not the Opry or the Ryman, and they never mention the name, but I think it is the Country Music Hall of Fame) to tell everyone that they will be performing two songs, but first they will be going on a date and maybe to a fantasy suite. This is probably less of a big deal since they all spent several nights together in a big mansion and at least one of the couples spent a night together in a motel.
Anyway, the couples find out their songs, and they are as follows:
For Jamie and Trevor: “Unchained Melody” by the Righteous Brothers and “Speechless” by Dan
and + Shay
For Bri and Chris: “Make You Feel My Love” by Adele and “Give Me Love” by Ed Sheeran
And for Rudi and Matt: “Saving All My Love” by Whitney Houston and “It’s Your Love” by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill
Trevor says to the camera that he will be moving to Nashville to be with Jamie “no matter what happens.” I suppose it helps that it is Nashville and not, you know, somewhere that isn’t a magnet for people surfing the waves of the post-reality-tv instagram economy. Bri and Chris are still way in love. In fact, as they practice some Adele together, the producers use it as the background music for the implosion of Rudi and Matt’s relationship.
After pacing around and being a weirdo for the first quarter of the episode, Matt finally sits down with Rudi. He tells her that he just doesn’t feel like he can get to where Jamie and Trevor and Chris and Bri are. And “it just hit [him] when Chris Harrison was talking.” Matt famously thought the show was hosted by Chris Hansen in the first episode, which, I mean, you DO NOT want to be on a show hosted by Chris Hansen. Anyway, Rudi thinks it is pretty obvious that she and Matt aren’t where Bri and Chris are in their love journey. But Rudi points out they sure as fuck are where Bri and Chris are geographically, which is Nashville. A place that is not Los Angeles, where Rudi is from and also where she could be hanging out with her friends if Matt had decided he wasn’t going to sing with her before they boarded the plane.
Matt tells Rudi that he is really sorry and he really cares about her and he seems very earnest. He doesn’t say he really thinks the coronavirus is overblown, and have you ever considered it could just be like the flu? But you could totally imagine it given his tone, you know? I don’t really understand Matt’s play here. He has the best singer on his team, and he seems to genuinely care about Rudi. So his decision to leave is pretty weird.
So to recap, Matt auditioned and joined the cast of a reality show to promote his music career (because let’s be serious – that’s why they are all here) and then deciding to leave rather than playing before the (probably) biggest crowd of his career on national television. That seems to make about as much sense as someone taking anti-malarial medication to prevent a coronavirus infection – but YOLO. Maybe it is just me, but I strongly suspect that the President is not taking hydroxychloroquine. I think the White House doctor just gave him a plate of steamed vegetables and said “it’s that drug you were talking about, take several servings each day.” I mean, we can all be complicit in this ruse, right?
Matt and Rudi go to Jamie and Trevor to break the news. Jamie actually screams “no!” and initially refuses to hug Rudi, as if it would mean Rudi can’t leave. It was a moment, and Rudi-Jamie seems like a real friendship. Jamie mouthed “I can’t do this without you” to Rudi, which is probably not an accurate reflection of how this departure affects Jamie’s chances of winning a singing contest, but it is sweet.
Trevor gives Matt a bro-hug and asks if Matt wants to talk about it – Matt says that it’s just time for him to leave – “I can’t fake love like you can” he does not say to Trevor.
Bri and Chris join them, and while more muted, they also seem sad. We hear Rudi and Matt’s rendition of “Tennessee Whiskey” playing over their departure. And Matt cries in the limo when talking about how talented Rudi is and how he took away her chance to show off her talent on another stage. Again, I don’t understand this move, but everyone looks good and in her own limo Rudi says she was happy to hear how much Matt cares for her.
In a development that shocks no one, the couple I pegged as the odds-on favorite last week went home without even singing. Let’s remind people again – don’t put actual money on my predictions. They call me the New York Times of predictions.
Speaking of missed calls, I have an important retraction to make: I must have been high when I pegged Hannah B as the greatest Bachelorette in history. Before then, Hannah B had already chosen Jed over Tyler; since then, we found out she had unresolved feelings for Peter (and not the hot one), “quarantined” in Florida with a bunch of strangers and Tyler C, and now broadcast herself dropping the N word with a hard R on IG live. So George, next time I move anyone past Rachel as the greatest Bachelorette of all time – just go ahead and remove my admin rights to this page.
Jamie and Trevor Date
This date either is visiting a hotel room or else they cut out the date portion, because we join them in a different hotel than the fancy suite at the Hermitage Hotel, where the cast was staying already. Jamie tells Trevor she’s really worried because everyone she’s loved has cheated on her. Again, she’s 21. So it is probably a small sample size. Also, Trevor notably admitted to “emotional cheating” and was accused of “cheating” by Natascha. So, you know, maybe part of it is Jamie’s type? She did choose Trevor over Ryan, whose only documented cheating was when he used the Half-Blood Prince’s annotated Potions textbook that one year.
Anyway, Trevor and Jamie are in love and they decide to go to the fantasy suite. The fantasy suite is just up a spiral staircase inside the hotel room that they are already in. “When did they practice the music?” is Amy’s reasonable question.
Chris and Bri Date
Bri tells the camera that she and Chris are “solid” but Bri also wants “to take things slow.” Not sure if it is because Bri is on camera for once, or something more, but they keep identifying Bri as “from Provo, Utah.” Bri also talks about the importance of “physical intimacy” and her desire not to rush it. Also she is drinking water instead of wine at dinner. In order to avoid spoilers I am not going to google this, but I am going to slap a #probableMormon on Bri of Provo and of water-with-dinner and “we’re not going to the fantasy suite.” That is what she told Chris at dinner after a boring adult conversation. And Chris seemed cool with it. So, you know, good for them.
I am team “do whatever you want sexually (or asexually) as long as it’s consensual” – but you could just make it clear that you’re going to the fantasy suite but definitely not boning. That happens you know. We all remember when Juan Pablo took Andi to the fantasy suite to watch his soccer highlights on YouTube. In Jamie & Trevor’s fantasy suite, we saw strawberries, champagne, and a full breakfast the next morning with French Toast and way too many pastries. Guys – do it for the food!!!
The morning after the fantasy suites we see Jamie and Trevor in bed together, and the question for the remainder of the episode I guess will be “does fucking your partner make you sing better?” Natural experiment! While Jamie and Trevor are enjoying their breakfast in bathrobes that are uncomfortably revealing to the cameras, Bri and Chris are working with a big band full of backing musicians that I guess have been with the show all season. The leader of this band is really leaning into the theory that “something is wrong,” though. He critiques Chris and Bri and all but says “you guys aren’t singing like people who did sex with each other last night.” The interspersing of Jamie and Trevor at their post-fantasy-suite lovey-dovey-est with Bri and Chris stressing out and falling short in the music department for the first time this season is the best way to create drama for what should not be a close singing contest. I mean, with Rudi out of the mix you need some theory of the case for why Chris and Bri could lose a signing contest to Jamie and Trevor. This was probably the biggest challenge the producers have faced since they had to produce an entire season of the Bachelor featuring a guy that spoke 50 words of English.
Before going on stage, Jamie is warming up her pipes in the green room and revealing that she’s always dreamed of touring with Trevor. Now we know that Jamie’s memory capacity is about 4 weeks long. Chris and Bri are putting on their makeup together and looking kind of serious – probably because they are preparing to win a singing competition.
Chris Harrison comes out and introduces our judges – Nashville locals former-Bachelorette Kaitlyn Bristow & boyfriend Jason Tartick (formerly third place in Becca K’s season), Taye Diggs, Jewel and
Covid patient Rita Wilson. While watching backstage, Chris notes that Taye Diggs is the best looking “brother.” Fact Check: Mostly true – I’m pretty sure half the straight women watching the show ovulated when Taye looked at the camera.
They introduced Rita Wilson as a “singer and music producer.” That is hiding the ball a bit, right? If you google her she is identified as “American actress” and she is married to a pretty famous guy also. That is like introducing Joe Biden as “a noted unconventional cleaner of fingers.”
Jamie & Trevor are up first and we quickly find out their strategy: have Jamie sing, and have Trevor look pretty for the crowd. Halfway through their second song “Speechless,” I’m pretty sure Trevor did this:
We did it! We got both of them into a completely unrelated blog. “Shoehorned Obama/Biden reference” is like the free space on your Victor/George Bachelor Recap Bingo Card.
Losing Trevor did not affect their performance. The judges are mostly positive, though Taye Diggs calls out the couple for leaning too much on each other and then, looking at Trevor, “don’t be afraid to stand up and sing.” This is a very reasonable critique when judging the finals of a dating and singing competition. Trevor, however, seems much better at the dating part than the singing part. The leadup to the final competition tended to focus a lot on Trevor’s abs. I mean, I get that singing relates to the diaphragm, but it isn’t like your voice emerges from your six pack. I mean, I assume. Not a doctor or a haver of six-pack abs.
Bri and Chris are up next and I took down no notes because their performance was awesome and pitch perfect from start to finish, and now we realize how hard the producers had to work in this episode to create any drama. It is impressive that they were able to provide any drama at all. And I suppose the Bachelor is producing the winners’ tour, and probably thinking that Jamie and Trevor would sell more tickets. But even with an unprecedented home-field advantage for Jamie, there was never any doubt.
The only negative critique is Jewel saying that the energy of Bri’s body didn’t match her voice – but Taye Diggs paid them the ultimate compliment by saying that he would pay to watch them sing. You know, unlike this time when he definitely got paid by ABC to sit and watch two random couples sing for 30 minutes. I hope Taye Diggs evaluated Jamie and Trevor using the same scale. “Jamie, I would watch you sing for free, maybe even pay a dollar or two. Trevor, you would need to pay me thirty dollars to watch you sing.”
Chris Harrison announces to the crowd that the judges will announce the winner live, and the judges depart to deliberate. I suspect they made their decision in about 4 seconds and spent another 10 minutes chit-chatting to make it seem like they were “deliberating.” I assume the topic of the ensuing discussion was Taye Diggs, Rita Wilson, and Jewel all being like “wait, who are you again?” to Kaitlyn and then in an even more confused tone repeating the question to Jason.
Bri and Chris win and skip onto their tour bus. We see that they’re in the studio recording a few weeks after the show, and the promised tour has been put on hiatus along with every other concert in the world. We get no updates on Trevor and Jamie – so I presume they’re married and Jamie’s pregnant – right?
After announcing the winners Chris Harrison asked the crowd to “say ‘goodbye’ to Jamie and Trevor,” though he should have added “…and say ‘hello,’ because they live here now.”
Most importantly, the show answered the most important question of them all: Does banging improve your singing? It’s a hard “no.”
And another season is in the books. Thank you for joining us on this journey. We hope all of you are safe and comfortable and will consider coming back for the next season of the Bachelorette whenever that happens.