The Bachelorette kicked off its live two-night season 19 finale on Tuesday, one that host Jesse Palmer promised would be “so emotional, so dramatic and so controversial, that it will have all America stunned.”
Rachel, Gabby and host Palmer were joined by a studio audience that watched the remaining men meet Gabby and Rachel’s families.
But first, the show picked up where it left off last week — with Zach, who was “blindsided” by Rachel’s sudden doubt as to whether he was ready for an engagement, pulling her aside before the rose ceremony.
On Tuesday, he opted to leave the competition, told her that he saw “Bachelorette Rachel,” instead of the Rachel he’d “come to know and love.” Rachel explained her feelings for Zach were real, but she found clarity during their overnight.
During the live portion of the show, they exchanged apologies — Zach for appearing to call Rachel out for her character and Rachel for doing anything to hurt him.
Rachel pinned roses on her last two suitors, Aven and Tino, then it was off to meet the parents.
First up was Aven, whose meeting with Rachel’s mother, father and best friends went smoothly at first, but took a sharp left turn when the two friends asked Aven point blank if he was ready to propose to her and he admitted he wasn’t there yet.
The news shocked Rachel, who revealed that Aven had told her otherwise during their overnight. He would later explain that an engagement to Rachel is his ultimate goal, but he needed to make sure it’s right.
Ahead of their final date, Rachel visited Aven in his room, where he chalked his promise of an engagement to getting “caught up in the moment.” Rachel sent Aven home.
Tino, on the other hand, got a stamp of approval from Rachel’s family, although the chilly reception from his family during hometowns left them and Rachel with some concerns.
Meanwhile, after getting a thumbs up from Gabby’s family, Erich blew his final date with her by saying that he also wasn’t ready to for an engagement and just wanted to “date” her.
That sent her storming off in tears, insisting “I don’t want to do this anymore.”
“So, here we are, a big fat dumpster fire,” she said.
Gabby and Rachel’s journey for love concludes, when The Bachelorette returns Tuesday, September 20 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.
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