How do you react after you’ve experienced a trauma? For everyone it’s different. But on Lifetime’s UnREAL, when you have a history of instability, your bosses claim to care for you but are convincing you to bury it and you still have a job to do, the answer is probably not very good.
Watching Jeremy strong-arm Rachel last week was brutal, but seeing Rachel spin out of control this week was even more excruciating and that was only the tip of the iceberg in this crazy emotional episode.
Darius and Beth Ann faced their own drama on the hometown date in the good ol’ Heart Of Dixie. While Quinn was served up a harsh dose of reality from Dr Wagerstein. And Coleman came face to face with the side of Rachel that he probably never expected. Oh and how could we forget, a certain Brit with a charming smile and grown out locks showed up at the last minute to throw a wrench in this train that is already hurdling way off the tracks.
Cortney: Tina, so much to discuss! But I have to say that for me, this week was all about Rachel. And Shiri Appleby KNOCKED IT OUT OF THE PARK! Not only did she direct this episode, but she also made every movement, every glance, every word of Rachel’s so deliberate and carry such weight that I was in complete awe.
From marking and photographing her bruises to yelling at Darius in front of everyone (cringe!) to exposing Beth Ann in the worst possible way, you could see her unravel piece by piece in a way that I literally felt in my gut and made me terrified for what was to come. I understand she has been through a trauma, but it’s clear that “powering through” is the very worst way to deal with it. Especially for her. She was spiraling out of control and quite literally taking everyone down with her.
Tina: Shiri was a powerhouse for sure, but I’m not going to lie, it was difficult to watch Rachel, like you said, “power through” and pretend she’s fine. She so clearly needed help. She so clearly needed to let Coleman in on her pain and what happened to her. Rachel’s trust issues are massive and it doesn’t help when someone she cared for once upon a time — Jeremy — proved he was untrustworthy and wasn’t a good guy at all.
And I don’t care what excuses he came up with in his confrontation with Quinn. I LOVED Quinn coming to Rachel’s defense and putting the screws — so to speak — to Jeremy. Even though in the back of my mind I felt exactly how Rachel felt when Quinn called her while Rachel was down in Sweet Home Alabama. It’s like, now you’re going to act like you care? Well, Rachel, somebody had to especially since Coleman knew nothing about Jeremy. I’m glad Quinn clued him in, though.
Cortney: As far as Jeremy goes, that scene could not have pissed me off more. He was quite obviously drunk when he hit Rachel and I don’t believe that last hit was intentional (NOT that that excuses it! It’s still completely unforgivable!) so I was completely expecting him to feel bad about it or at least try to explain how it got out of hand, but nooooo, he had to go and justify it and stand behind his actions! And then try to get Quinn to see his side. HE’S THE WORST!! I was going above and beyond in trying to give him a chance after last week, but after this, no more.
Jeremy: Wake up, Quinn, she stole your show. It’s gone. Over. Someone needed to stand up to her.
Quinn: Is that right? How about this? What do you want to do, Jeremy? Do you want to hit me, does that get you off, hitting women? Next time I’m cutting them off.
Someone needed to stand up to her?! Who says that! And since when does standing up to her mean throwing her around?! Not cool. This character went way off the rails this season and I don’t like it. On the flip side, someone I do like more and more each episode is Coleman. I, too, am glad Quinn told him. As far as why Quinn did it — does she care about Rachel? Or just care about the show? — I’m still not sure. But like we said, Coleman needed to know.
I’d like to think he would’ve figured out something was up eventually, especially after Rachel more or less got off on ruining Beth Ann’s life and ran in to Coleman’s arms like a giddy school girl ready to make out. Seeing that was terrifying and so upsetting to me. But Coleman handled her in the best possible way. I really believe that he’s a good guy and cares about her and he is DEFINITELY not her Chet. Even if she doesn’t see it and decided to take Quinn’s side for the second week in a row.
Tina: He’s so not her Chet. Chet likes to tear down. Coleman wants to build her up. I keep wanting to say to Rachel where Coleman is concerned, ‘run into the light, Rachel, you are welcome! You are welcome!’ Yes, I’m paraphrasing Poltergeist here. But Coleman is offering her another life. A life that’s much less toxic than the one she continues to choose. I want to have his scenario happen for her, but then the show will be over.
As for the gruesome twosome, I’d like to think Rachel and Quinn care about each other. Deep, deep, deep, deep down somewhere where those thick, thick walls they both have can’t reach. It’s a twisted caring, but it’s caring. I hope.
I know we have some Alabama shenanigans to talk about. But, Dr. Wagerstein’s right. Quinn — despite her vicious protests — is one lonely woman. On the bright side, she asked Booth out. I’m all for those two. On the dark side, she brought Adam back to mess with the chemistry that is Rachel and Coleman. This Quinn-ipulation was so cold, Cortney. SO. COLD. Although, Adam looked supremely hot! I mean, don’t get me wrong. I’m glad he’s returned. And ending the episode with him back on Everlasting land was epic. Did I mention, he looks amazing?
Cortney: Hahaha, he looks like he went on a Chet wilderness outing and I LIKE it! He left a boy and came back a rugged mountain man! Can’t wait to see what his arrival brings. But I also have some choice words for Quinn for pulling this shit. Not cool. Rachel found someone who loves her and supports her and wants her to live up to her potential — what more can you ask for?! And if Quinn really does care about Rachel deep deep deep down, like you say, shouldn’t she want that, not try to destroy it? But nope, Quinn sees Coleman as a “cancer” that “needs to be cut out.”
I will say, I do believe she does care in some way about Rachel. But not nearly as much as she cares about herself and her show. And if Coleman is a threat to her — in that he’s both taking away her power as a show runner and her only “friend” — then he’s got to go. And this all harps back to what Dr. Wagerstein said about her being lonely.
Dr. Wagerstein: Have you ever asked yourself why you care so much about that girl?
Quinn: Okay, this is gonna be rich.
Dr. Wagerstein: I’m gonna say the one thing no one has ever been brave enough to say to your face. You’re lonely.
Quinn: Lonely? I am surrounded all day, I spend half my day screaming at people to leave me alone.
Dr. Wagerstein: I’m talking intimacy, Quinn. In-To-Me-See.
Quinn: Are you having a stroke?
Dr. Wagerstein: This show, it consumes you. It’s all you have, but it doesn’t have to be. You don’t have to die alone like your dad.
Quinn: Got i and I’m suppose to be taking advice from you? Underpaid, forever single, pathetic reality show therapist?
Dr. Wagerstein: Who actually cares about you. Don’t sabotage it with this guy, Quinn. He may be your last chance.
She may be talking about Booth, but I think the lonely and needing people who “see her” also extends to Rachel. And I love that Wagerstein went THERE! Comparing Quinn to her dad — it hits home but was what Quinn needed to hear…even if she did slam Wagerstein in the process. But Wagerstein does care about her, what she said wasn’t out of Quinn-like malice. It was genuine. Harsh, but genuine. Anyways, moving on to Booth. He wasn’t in it much, but when he was, I was on board! Like Coleman gets Rachel, he gets Quinn. And that funeral kiss — wow!
Tina: He’s adorable. I like the effect he has on Quinn. He’s so understanding and genuinely seems to be into her. I hope to see more of him on the show. I just don’t want Quinn to mess it up. Although if she messes up Rachel and Coleman permanently, I might have to wish karma to come back and bite her in the you-know-what.
But you have these women — Quinn and Rachel — and sometimes their darkness oozes onto the people that surround them. So part of me wants to tell Booth and Coleman to get the hell out of dodge while they can before they get Quinn’d and Rachel’d. But, really, I just want everyone to be happy. Unfortunately, this is not that kind of show. This show bathes in darkness.
Speaking of which, Beth Ann, Beth Ann, Beth Ann! Rachel’s tantrum or near meltdown — whatever you want to call it — got Darius to choose the Confederate flag bikini girl for the all important hometown date. And while it turned out to be everything Rachel could have ever wanted, it was a disastrous thing for everyone else involved.
Darius clearly didn’t want to take this trip down South. Beth Ann wanted everything to go perfectly. Meeting the wannabe in-laws went well. They loved Darius. This wasn’t what Rachel wanted to see. Then she got this “amazing” gift dropped in her lap in the form of Beth Ann’s pregnancy. What did you think of this news, Cortney?
Cortney: I have to admit, I kind of loved when the meet and greet went so well and Rachel’s plan appeared to be backfiring. That being said, this is UnREAL so we both know happy-go-lucky won’t last for long. And you would think finding out that Beth Ann had a “future Trump supporter” inside her would be drama enough, but nope, Rachel had to take it one step further with the ex. I’d like to think we can blame this on her current mental state, but I don’t know, I could see sane Rachel instigating the chaos, too. And when I say chaos, I mean CHAOS. It was insanity. And my favorite part of it all was Beth Ann’s declaration of love and Darius’ reaction. So so good.
Beth Ann: But I love him!
Darius: Wait, you love me? Pump the breaks. Pump the breaks.
Bahaha! The look on Darius’ face. Priceless. And honestly, while the Beth Ann news was sad, what really hit me hard was the fracture in Darius’ and Rachel’s relationship. I’ve said before how much I like these two working together, but this week, that all went to hell in a handbag. Darius is over Rachel’s shenanigans and I can’t imagine that boding well for the show. She was the one who could manipulate him and now that he’s no longer under her spell, I think it’s going to be a whole new ball game.
Tina: The whole bringing the hick ex-con of a boyfriend smacked of what happened last season when they brought Mary’s abusive ex-husband back into the picture, don’t you think? Thankfully, this story didn’t have the same tragic ending that that one did. RIP Mary.
With Beth Ann, it felt like she was someone trapped by her circumstances. But she also saw Darius as her way out. It’s great that her family didn’t turn out to be the closed-minded jerks we thought they were going to be. They were sweet and welcoming. And I don’t blame them for wanting better for their girl. That baby daddy wasn’t it. And Darius certainly wasn’t it, either. I felt like Beth Ann was deluding herself into think Darius was into her .
I’m like you, Cortney. I don’t like the rift that might have eruptedÂ between Darius and Rachel. I was a fan of their working relationship. However, I’m also happy that he’s expressing his dislike over her manipulations and rationalizations. I’m curious to see what’s next for them.
While things were blowing up big time in Alabama, home base wasn’t exactly boring. I really loved Jay and Madison scheming together. It’s my new favorite toy.
Cortney: Yesss! You’re so right! I didn’t even think of Mary…but that’s probably because I’ve chosen to block that whole tragic situation out of my mind and pretend it never happened. And I agree, I love that Beth Ann’s family so warmly embraced Darius. She’s been made into a joke since the beginning and I feel like this gave her some validation as far as not being racist.
I also think it was a great opportunity for Darius to open his mind…after all, he was predicting just as much doom and gloom as Rachel. But Darius was never into Beth Ann and, in the end, that’s what matters. This show isn’t about love, it’s about ratings.
And by now, we all know that it’s the drama that brings the ratings, which is why Jay and Madison’s new game is genius. These two have this weird friendly competition thing going on between them and I’m totally on board…especially since everyone else on this show is ALL about the competition and not so much about the friendly.
But lo and behold, working together clearly isn’t such a bad thing as Mirror of Truth brought them a totally natural way for drama to ensue. But, of course, who needs natural when you have Chet’s two cents?! Getting Chantal to expose Tiffany’s little Romeo tryst — ratings gold. However, it doesn’t take much for a plan to backfire and when it came time for Darius to choose baby-mama vs cousin-lover, he went with honesty aka Tiffany. What did you think of this dismissal, Tina?
Tina: I feel like Darius and Tiffany and Darius and Chantal, for that matter, have been on simmer for far too long. We saw their connections in the beginning of the season and then the show had other things — and people — to deal with. So I like that he kept Tiffany despite the Romeo of it all. Beth Ann is pregnant. She has this to deal with, her future baby should be her priority. And, also, maybe worrying about what the world is going to think when this particular episode hits airwaves.
We’re down to, I think, four girls? Chantal, Tiffany, Yael and the cop with the short hair who got blasted for it during Mirror of Truth. Now that we’re down to less than a handful of wannabe Darius wives, let’s hope we actually get to see if any of them have connections with the football player. So far, Tiffany’s the frontrunner.
UnREAL airs on Lifetime Monday nights at 10/9c.
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