Katie Thurston has experienced her fair share of heartbreak this season, especially with single father Michael leaving unexpectedly last week. And with hometown dates on the horizon, the drama is only getting started. Now obviously, thanks to Covid, Katie can’t actually travel to the hometowns of the final three men, so they’re bringing their hometowns to her. Read on for tonight’s Bachelorette recap and find out what happens when Katie meets the families.
Blake’s hometown date
So Blake’s hometown date gives Katie a little taste of Canada. They play hockey, darts, it’s a grand old time. And since these hometown dates are taking place just steps away from where the other men are staying (awkward), Greg can literally see the two frolicking outside together in matching hockey jerseys, looking like the happiest couple in the world.
This is painful. Why didn’t a production assistant bring Greg to the spa for a massage? Or like, literally anything else? Why is his only pass-time a front row seat to the Katie and Blake show? Needless to say, it’s like a punch in the stomach for the poor dude. “She looks so happy, it scares me,” he says. I feel you, bro.
But it’s not about Greg right now. It’s about Blake…and his family. Tonight, Katie meets Blake’s mom, sister, and another guy who they never name but I’ll assume it’s his brother in law. They immediately grill Katie on her feelings for Blake, and when she knew she wanted to pursue something serious with him. The elephant in the room is that the two haven’t dropped the L-word yet, but they both apparently feel very strongly for one another. Blake’s mom admits she can tell her son is “smitten” with Katie, and tells him to man up and tell her how he’s truly feeling. Blake’s sister, on the other hand, calls out the obvious… which is that Blake has dated three Bachelorettes (Clare and Tayshia, last Bachelorette season) and he’s fallen hard for them as well. Will Blake return for next season if things don’t work out with Katie? Apparently not, because this time is the real deal. Sure, Jan.
By the end of the night, Blake knows he has to tell Katie he loves her… but he doesn’t. Katie drives away without getting that reassurance, but still Blake feels confident that they’ll end up together. “If things keep going the way they are, I know I’ll be getting engaged to Katie,” he says.
Justin’s hometown date
Right away we learn that Justin’s parents will not be attending his makeshift “hometown” date, not because they’re not down to quarantine, but because they literally don’t believe in the whole “finding love in a matter of weeks with a total stranger” thing. Justin’s frustrated that he’s not going to be able to introduce Katie to his family, but instead will be introducing her to two of his friends. I mean, to be honest, at the end of the day, does it really even matter? This is a battle between Blake and Greg, and if you haven’t figured that out at this point, I feel sorry for you.
Anyway, Justin takes Katie to “Baltimore” and I’m kind of cringing at how much they’re forcing the whole hometown date thing. We all know about the restrictions this season has due to the pandemic, so there’s no need to put on a show. Taking a photo in front of a sign that says “Welcome to Baltimore” is not necessary because…YOU’RE NOT IN BALTIMORE, but I digress.
Justin drops the bomb that his parents won’t coming and Katie is totally understanding, but bummed. She still gets to meet his two friends, so yay. So, Katie and Justin give the two guys a little recap of their relationship, which is confusing to all of America, because we’ve witnessed approximately none of it.
Things get heavy when Justin’s friend questions why he hasn’t told her he loves her. Justin doesn’t want to rush the L-word and feels he still has time to express those feelings down the road, but after some encouragement, tells Katie he’s falling in love with her. Katie smiles and kisses him and tells him she’s “proud” of him.
Greg’s hometown date
So, Greg’s from New Jersey, so his hometown date consists of riding around on a tandem bike, eating pork rolls, and pretending to surf in the Jersey ocean which they can’t do because they’re in friggen New Mexico. Later on, the two head to a court to play basketball, which is something Greg shared with his late father.
Greg brings up how much he loved their previous date when Katie took Greg to “Seattle” (again, not actually Seattle) and they ended the evening kissing in the rain. And just like that, Greg snaps his fingers and once again it starts raining. Somewhere off-screen there’s a production assistant holding a hose I just know it, but on camera it really does look romantic.
Later that night, Greg is super excited to introduce Katie to his family. He says his family hasn’t seen him this happy since before his dad passed, so this is a big deal. While we get to see some of his family tonight, there apparently are a bunch that couldn’t make the trip, so they actually compiled adorable video messages for Greg and Katie. Way to go above and beyond, guys. Wait until Justin’s parents see this.
During the hometown date, Greg admits that his connection with Katie makes him realize why it hasn’t worked with anyone else. And Katie feels the same way. In fact, she pretty much tells his mom that Greg has this in the bag. She doesn’t want to use the word “frontrunner,” but by saying that, she’s using the word frontrunner. And we all know it. Still, Greg’s mom is concerned he may end up hurt.
Greg shares with his mom that he plans to propose to Katie at the end of all this. “She fills me up with happiness, I haven’t been this happy in a long time,” he tells her.
At the end of the date, Katie and Greg get some alone time to reflect on the day. Greg breaks down in tears over his dad and how he lost himself for a long time after his passing. But Katie has brought so much joy back into his life. “I didn’t know I was going to fall in love with you. And I am in love with you,” he says through tears. “You make me the happiest I’ve ever been.”
But that happiness comes to a screeching halt when Katie doesn’t tell Greg she’s in love with him as well. She doesn’t tell him much of anything, actually, other than how “rough” the rest of this journey is going to be. It’s been difficult for her to be so committed to one relationship, but still keep up the other connections.
Obviously frustrated by this, Greg basically asks Katie to tell him he’s going to be the final one. “I can’t be there at the end if it’s not going to be us,” he says. “I just don’t understand how you don’t know at this point.”
At this rate I want to scream at my television. Just TELL HIM, girl. But she doesn’t. Katie still isn’t saying what Greg wants to hear and they end the night on a sour note.
The next morning, Greg is confused and thinking Katie doesn’t feel the same way he does. He’s convinced himself that she doesn’t love him and heads to her hotel room to confront her. He calls her out for being cold when he told her he was in love with her. She didn’t reciprocate feelings or even react. And still even now, seems to be cold and unexpressive as Greg is falling apart.
But enough is enough. Greg is begging for reassurance and Katie just can’t give it to him. This dude is in deep with Katie and something tells me Blake is in the back of her mind, or else why wouldn’t she just tell him he’s the one? “There’s obviously a disconnect here. It’s clear,” he says. “As much as it hurts me, I’ve reached my breaking point with this.”
“I’m confused how that one night can change everything,” she says. She tells him that he’s been her “number one” from the beginning, but that sets him off. It’s not about roses or the show or making it another week. And the fact that she keeps referencing things that have to do with this “journey” infuriates him. Greg breaks down in tears before storming out of Katie’s room. Katie chases after him and apologizes. “I’m losing you, I’m losing my mind here. This whole thing was for nothing,” she says through tears.
But it’s over for Greg. He tells her he’s not happy. And I think I speak for everyone when I say, what the HELL just happened?
Katie breaks down crying, screaming, “I’m done, I’m done, I’m done.” She heads back to her room sobbing, referring to this as the “biggest heartbreak of her life.” “The confidence and strength I had are just destroyed,” she says, questioning if she can even continue the show.
Until next week…
The Bachelorette, Mondays, 8/7c, ABC