This is my first go-round at a Women Tell All special. At least, the Canadian version. I’ve seen several of the U.S. Bachelor tell-alls and have been amused by the cattiness, sniffs and the side eye delivered in front of the live audience.
This being my first-ever watch of the Canadian instalment, my immediate questions were as follows: Would the truth behind Lisa’s makeup session come out? Would Natalie defend her return to the show or admit it was a mark of desperation? What would former frontrunner Kaylynn say to Tim Warmels? And would Tyler Harcott show up to host the darned thing?
The first revelation delivered was that yes, Harcott was the ringleader for the episode, wrangling jangled hearts and raw nerves with aplomb. After what felt like an endless recap of the season’s highs and lows–anyone who has watched the year already knows what went down–Harcott got down to business with hard-hitting questions regarding their first thoughts on Tim (“Price Charming,” Sonia exclaimed), how Sonia felt being the “most mature” woman in the mansion at 42, and whether Rileigh was jealous of the other girls in the house. I always hate it when the ladies or men are interviewed en masse like that; there are quick edits and mere snippets of conversations that really don’t reveal anything of substance.
Things got more interesting once Kaylynn made her way to Harcott’s Hot Seat. There were some mildly testy moments during her segment, most notably Kaylynn saying she’s not that emotional in real life, followed by the first eye roll of the night courtesy of Sachelle. The thing that struck me about the first few minutes of the Women Tell All was how upbeat Harcott was and how flippant his comments were regarding the girls’ feelings. Kaylynn’s crying jags were underplayed by the host, which I thought was a bit of an injustice and bordering on disrespectful. Kaylynn cried a lot, so why not explore why that was? I’d have been a lot happier if the producers had dumped all of the replayed footage and really explored the reasons why the girls thought they were dumped and their feelings about the process overall.
Natalie was up next and stated the producers had not asked her to return to the show, but that it has been her own decision. She also announced–and I was actually caught off-guard by this–that she knew Tim wasn’t going to keep her around and had only returned to cause drama amongst the remaining girls. The fireworks started to go off, with Lisa critiquing Natalie over her decision to come back and Renée-Anne accused her of putting on an act. I was actually surprised by the vitriol directed at Natalie for her actions, actions that I didn’t think were unwarranted.
The highlight, of course, was when Lisa took
the stand her spot on the couch. If Natalie felt attacked by the ladies, Lisa must have felt like she’d been through a war. However, jabs from Sachelle (backed by audience applause) and comments from Natalie didn’t faze the season’s villain; she just shrugged her shoulders and blamed the free booze. She also blamed the demon in the bottle on her smoochfest with the Italian bartender, an incident that was galvanizing during the episode but barely covered on Tuesday night. Lisa said she regretted the move, but I wanted more of an explanation. Alas, none was given.
Sachelle relived the horror of being dumped after her hometown date, but the arrival of Tim on the couch meant they had some closure and no hard feelings. Tim also didn’t have any harsh words for Lisa; he accepted her apology and moved on. I was a little underwhelmed–I had been expecting harsher criticism of Tim by the ladies who had been dumped–but that stuff was either left on the cutting room floor or ignored in favour of bloopers and lighter moments on the show followed by an extended sneak peek at the two-part season finale. That’s too bad. I was really hoping for more serious discussion with the girls–especially the ones eliminated early and received no attention other than being introduced at the beginning of the show–over their experiences with Tim.
The Bachelor Canada two-part season finale kicks off next Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET on City.