Vienna wins Bachelor reunion; angry Jake and smarmy, biased Chris Harrison lose

The long-awaited reunion/confrontation between The Bachelor 14 couple Jake Pavelka and Vienna Girardi aired last night, and it delivered on the drama. And although there was no sign of the rumored physical violence, it was disturbing, with Jake exploding with rage and Vienna leaving in tears.

The confrontation started calmly but went from zero to 60 in about three seconds, with Jake’s rage surfacing (“I’m so mad at you; I’m so disgusted with you,” he spat) and Vienna countering with name-calling (“famewhore…my impression was that you were a pilot”). I’m pretty sure nonverbal communication and emotion expert Paul Ekman would have a field day with this footage.

What’s most amazing is how well Vienna came across, especially considering how she was edited into the villain of her season. She seemed to have genuine emotion about their relationship and seemed hurt, whereas Jake was petty, immature, and couldn’t keep his rage under control, constantly snapping at her about interrupting (he really has a problem with that) and finally yelling at her. He couldn’t even stop being an asshole with cameras on: “Baby, be quiet while I’m talking,” he condescendingly said at one point. “And this is how he treats me,” Vienna said.

However, I was most disturbed by Chris Harrison, who’s so smarmy, and like always, clearly picked his bro over the ho, which is how he seems to view Vienna. He never challenged Jake but constantly challenged her, because women are always at fault, clearly. Chris started by making this into more than it was, lying (“many people have found love on our show”) and then acting shocked while bragging (“I just had dinner with you and Vienna…”). He even repeated his line about having dinner with them; yes, Chris, you’re so amazing, you get to have dinner with the people on your show. Chris also used the phrase “we” more than once as if he was part of their relationship. Well, now he has Jake all to himself.

Anyway, they exchanged a lot of accusations and insults that I’m not even going to try to summarize, though People has highlights. You just have to watch it. Here’s the relevant part of the episode, meaning all of The Bachelorette has been excised in this clip:

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.