Episode 7

I joined the lovely ladies at Us Weekly on Tuesday morning for a Facebook Live recap of this week's episode. You can watch it here


“It would be amazing to actually be the person that gets to see you feel the way that I felt just now.” —Alex, who learned sentence structure from Margot Tenenbaum.

We pick up with Jojo packing up for her day trip to the countryside, and she is prompted to say says a phrase so clichéd that even she can't keep a straight face while delivering it...

 

ALEX'S 1-ON-1

Alex receives his long-awaited (and as a viewer, patronizing) 1-on-1 Date, which is filled with scintillating conversation. For example...

 Good talk.

Good talk.

In the evening, Alex says something that is so textbook producer-influenced I had to make a .gif of it...

 HE decided it. Uh huh.

HE decided it. Uh huh.

People often seem bewildered as to why contestants all seem to open up on schedule, especially right before getting booted. Are their radars really so off-base? Probably not. A producer most likely built Alex up to feel special in Jojo's eyes and told him, "No matter what happens, don't you want to make sure Jojo knows how you feel? Don't you want to put it all out there?"

I may have given this example of my experience before but I can't find it anywhere on the site. (Tell me in the comments if you recognize this! I hate repeating myself.) On my season, when I was feeling particularly introverted and not game to splash around during the "pool party", a producer asked me, "Don't you want to look back on this experience and feel you made the best of it?" You can certainly see how a person might think to themselves, "Yes, I'm being a sourpuss and I should break out of my shell/comfort zone and just let loose/be more aggressive." (For the record, my answer: "Yes, but I'd rather be able to look back and recognize myself." His response? "Touché.") Just as with Alex, you can see how someone in his position might say, "Yes, I shouldn't hold back, I should live this moment to the fullest and put it all out there and make sure she's knows how I feel. #NOREGRETS."

Anyhow, considering Jojo's (priceless!) long-blink expression when Alex says he's falling in love...

... it's safe to say he wasn't going just off what Jojo was giving him—I happen to think Jojo is wonderfully transparent that way—and was very likely riding high off encouragement from the puppeteer in the wings. 

 

JORDAN'S 1-ON-1

I honestly don't understand everyone's beef with Jordan. I've heard people call him untrustworthy, a "bad liar" (I still don't see how that's a bad thing), a player, and—GASP—There For The Wrong Reasons. I happen to find Jordan quite modest, particularly considering his looks and the fact that he was a professional athlete, and quite well-spoken. He doesn't have any mannerisms (save fabulous hair flips) that seem inauthentic or irksome (I'm reminded of Josh's Too Serious™ face, which by the way, after tuning in to 5 minutes of Famously Single last night, I'm happy to report is still very much intact) and the issues anyone has had with him have seemed pretty petty to me. (It's possible there were better examples than James Taylor's poker rules story, but that was the story James gave to demonstrate Jordan's "entitlement", which, um, was not a strong argument.)

My favorite moment of Jordan's 1-on-1 was when he shared his (surprising, to me, anyway) not-so-great relationship with his brother Aaron, along with this tidbit...

Say what you want about Jordan, this sort of competition and constant comparison would not be an easy thing to go through just as a human being, let alone if it were with your own brother. This whole conversation was an interesting plot-thickening twist for me and I think showed there's more to Jordan than meets the eye.

 

GROUP DATE

The only redeeming thing about this Group Date for me was Andy's commentary during it. I'm trying to convince him to live tweet because his thoughts are hilarious. Anyway, there's really nothing to say here, except we learned that when it rains, there's apparently no better backup plan than room service and sad games of truth or dare...

 Andy: "Wow, they're really getting up to some shenanigans."

Andy: "Wow, they're really getting up to some shenanigans."

I touched on this in my Flare recap, and I've learned by now to think long and hard before calling anyone on this show "fake" (I learned that while recapping Chris' season), but something about Robby does not seem, um, 100% authentic to me...

You would think Jojo had just asked Robby to kill for her, not simply asked him to talk about his ex (which, remember, EVERYONE on this show does). Discussing an ex is not a new, treacherous, nor risky "path", nor is sharing it somehow a gesture of his love for Jojo being "a priority". It's a simple conversation about exes between a man and a woman on a reality dating show. Something about the above stuck out to me as overly theatrical. (And you can even see Jojo scrunch up her face to keep from smiling during this SERIOUS CONVERSATION.)

The Group Date ends with a super subtle moment that I couldn't stop laughing over. I seriously rewound to point it out to Andy. It's so slight, and hard to capture with a .gif, but watch Jojo's near-imperceptible nod after she says she'll see the guys tomorrow...

Something about the combination of the awkwardness of her having to tell the guys this (isn't that Chris Harrison's job?) and then that conciliatory nod cracks me up.

 

LUKE'S 1-ON-1

I already went on about how this date made me begin to find Luke hot so I won't delve into that, but notice how during skeet shooting they didn't even try to make it seem like the clip of Jojo's hit wasn't from later in the evening (assuming it was even taken the same day) ...

Back at Puesto Viejo, Chase and Jordan have a Man Chat, and I had a giggle over Jordan's fantastic comforting skills...

 Don't hold back, Jordan.

Don't hold back, Jordan.

And after Luke's return, we catch another glimpse of Luke's sense of humor...

 MORE OF THIS, please and thank you.

MORE OF THIS, please and thank you.

 

ROSE CEREMONY

As I said over on Flare, I was pretty surprised to see James Taylor go (I thought he had Final 4 written all over him) but despite his teary goodbye...

  ♫ Always a bridesmaid... ♫

♫ Always a bridesmaid... ♫

... something tells me his dating life isn't going to be a struggle any longer. Anyone read Andi's book, where she said the guys from her season were swimming in female attention after the show? I think the quote was, "We get girls way out of our leagues!" So, worry not, James Taylor.

 

BEST DRESSED

This week it was the two frontrunners (according to everyone but Robby) tied for Best Dressed...

They both look so polished and dapper. I love the simplicity of Luke's outfit (and I respect the color of the tie which is harder to pull of than it looks) and the great pattern-mixing of Jordan's (you may remember his look from Episode 2).

 

WORST DRESSED

I always hate to call out the guy going home as Worst Dressed, but this look was not good...

 My expression re: that tie.

My expression re: that tie.

Just because a shirt and tie match does not mean they should be worn together. The color of this shirt is not good under any circumstances, and that tie is too Harlequin-esque to for me. Sorry, James Taylor!! :(

 

JOJO'S LOOKS

To make up for what I found to be a pretty boring episode, Jojo's fashion was ON FIRE this week. I was over the moon for multiple outfits.

First up was her car-ride-to-the-countryside ensemble...

I've praised the simultaneous accessibility and stylishness of several of Jojo's "casual" looks and this is a textbook example. What I love is that this outfit is a combo of many things we all might already own, minus the cute jacket, and adding that jacket elevates it to chic status. Jojo's tweed jacket is by Isabel Marant Etoile and sells HERE. Her grey McGuire jeans sell HERE. You may remember her Aldo boots from Episode 2, but they are still sadly sold out (HERE).

Jojo's gaucho date ensemble was tied for my favorite of the episode...

As much as I praise the wearability of some of Jojo's outfits, I do love me a shamelessly impractical yet utterly fabulous look now and then. Are tight, suede, high-waisted bellbottoms and 3.5 inch heeled boots really the ideal pieces for riding and cuddling horses? Probably not, but she looked so badass I don't care. This look was so 70s (in the best way) and since we see Jojo in so many sparkly bodycons, it was refreshing to see her in a more androgynous look. Jojo's shirt is by McGuire and sells (on sale!) HERE. Her amazing pants are by Frame Denim and sell (also on sale!) HERE. Her stylist purchased her belt in Buenos Aires but there are similar belts above. You've already seen her Frye boots on her first 1-on-1 with Luke; you can find them HERE. Her Robyn Rhodes necklace was named after her and sells HERE (get 20% off with code "PANDA20"). As always, price-conscious alternatives are above.

To send Alex packing...

The ONLY thing I'm not wild about here is the color of the leather pants. And I would love them with, say, black boots. Or I'd like the outfit with black leggings instead of green. But this combination is slightly too colorblock-y for me. That said, as separates, I like those boots, I like those pants, and I LOVE that poncho. Jojo's cream poncho sweater is by Vince and sells HERE. Her Alice & Olivia leather legging sell HERE. Her Kristin Cavallari for Chinese Laundry boots sell HERE (they're also available in black HERE).

Jojo's outfit for her 1-on-1 with Jordan sent me into a googling frenzy...

I really dig this ensemble. There's a youthfulness to these pieces together. I love the distressing throughout and, once again, how wearable it is. There's a Jojo's black sweater was purchased by her stylist in Buenos Aires so it'd be next to impossible to find, but after MUCH sleuthing (YOU'RE WELCOME) I found one that I'm near-positive is the exact same sweater (HERE). There's also a similar-ish one selling HERE and a ribbed one with the hi-low silhouette selling HERE. Her wishbone necklace is by Jules Vance and sells HERE (get 20% off with code "JOJO").

The other favorite look of mine was for the evening with Jordan...

This outfit is a classic case of dressing for women versus men. Andy found this look business-like and didn't like the blouse at all. Meanwhile, I LOVE everything about everything here. The silhouette may be slightly corporate, but the execution—the material of the skirt, that lace, that slit, that plunge!—is not. Sexy sophistication at its finest. Both Jojo's blouse and skirt are by the Kooples (a brand of which I've been a longtime fan; my WTA dress was by them!) and sell (both on sale!) HERE and HERE, respectively. You've seen her Stuart Weitzman "Nudist" sandals several times now; they sell HERE. Her diamond spear necklace is by The Woods (the pendant sells HERE) but there's a wallet-friendlier alternative HERE. Her crystal tassel necklace is also by The Woods and while I couldn't for the life of me find it online, there are super similar ones on the carousel above (all on Etsy, so yay for supporting small designers!).

For her horseback-riding, skeet-shooting day with Luke...

Casual, Western-themed perfection. That is all. Jojo's plaid shirt is by R13 and sells HERE. Her Adriano Goldschmied jeans sell HERE. Her Rag & Bone belt sells HERE. Her boots are (amazingly) Old Navy but are (unsurprisingly) sold out. (They aren't even listed on the website anymore.)

For the Rose Ceremony...

I may not love this look but I do like it. I like the sheer details on the dress (although I keep thinking the back looks like the Union Jack) and that Jojo took a risk with some darker lipstick. There's a subtle and pleasing goth vibe to this look and I like that for variety's sake. Jojo's Mac Duggal gown is surprisingly affordable (for what it is) and sells HERE.

Until next week, fellow pandas!