Hiya! It's time for more Below Deck shenanigans, of which I have become extremely leery of these days. It used to be fun, right! Racists ruin EVERYTHING! Rolling into my recap of Below Deck S9:E10 The Smell of Sweat and Desperation after the break!
So we had a steward leave right before charter, we've got a primary charter guest with a lot of liquefied food needs, nobody's having any fun at all.
We left with Primary Michael Gonella dealing with Primary Chelsea Gonella crying in the bathroom because chef Rachel Hargrove wasn't feeding her often enough, that's where we open. Rachel's not stupid, I can't figure out why she's sending food out for everyone except for one of the Primaries. Every person on that charter has told her: don't feed us until you have something for her. Liquefying the food has proven more difficult than Rachel expected but as second steward Fraser Olender says: you had one job.
To be fair to Rachel, she comes up to introduce the next course after Primary Chelsea's meltdown, good on her. This is a super quiet and awful dinner anyway.
The guests are having a Silent Disco on the beach, that means everyone wears headphones and dances by themselves AND HAVE YOU SEEN THE LOBSTER??? This is a pivotal scene in that hilariously surreal movie!
Captain Lee Rosbach isn't laughing OR dancing when he finds most of the deck crew dancing silently in the kitchen, first officer Eddie Lucas included.
How do they drive out on the water in the dark?? The beach party looks awesome, I just don't understand why they want it to be silent...they're all listening to the same music...
Chief steward Heather Chase and lead deckhand Jake Foulger rock out behind the bar, get that tip, y'all!
It's after midnight when all the clean-up is done, the whole crew ends up in the mess after including deckhand Rayna Lindsey. Heather reaches out to her, as she's been doing, to be rebuffed after Heather's casual use of a racial slur more than one time one night out.
I know I'm not the right person to workshop this, but I'm going to throw some things out there. Do I think Heather is racist against Black people, of which Rayna is one? I don't know. I don't know her or what she does outside of wiping down counters for 45 minutes a week on my television. Does her use of the 'N' word automatically make her a racist? Of course it does! Even if she was just drunk and repeating what she heard on a song she particularly liked, the fact that she thought it was okay to say it out loud, never mind around people of colour, tells me she's at least completely unaware of racial relations in the country she has lived her whole life in. I'm not in the US and I'm not BIPOC so I'm on extremely shaky ground here but I gotta say: Heather needs to make a sincere effort here to make amends / apologize in a way that Rayna accepts as genuine. Growth needs to happen and be demonstrated.
As Rayna says: 'you should never be that comfortable.'
On deck, Rayna is discussing exactly all of this with fellow deckhand Wes O'Dell, who also happens to be Black. I understand why Rayna didn't say anything right away when she heard Heather use the 'N' word and then she said it was okay, just watch out for other people that might 'cancel' her for it. I get all that. Rayna is a young person trying to get along and she said she didn't want to be perceived as an angry 'Black person.' I'm going to say that I have formed all sorts of negative views of Rayna and not one has to do with her colour, but maybe I have a bias I'm unaware of. I just know she's inexperienced and argues rudely with her lead constantly. She cannot take constructive criticism of any kind. In my experience, those are Young Person Things, not Black Person Things, but again: not an expert.
Wes listens but doesn't really comment, which is very on brand for him. To do nothing.
Heather...doesn't seem to understand why Rayna is mad at her. Even though...Rayna referenced her use of the 'N' word just that morning. Did she not hear? Did Heather forget? Either way, she's upstairs complaining about Rayna not responding to her to Fraser, who declines to comment, which is very NOT on-brand for him.
He does unwillingly mention it to Heather, who rolls her eyes and takes a deep breath. I bet she was hoping that had all been forgotten. The fact that Rayna is telling everyone is probably a huge blow. She goes to her cabin to cry. Ah. Heather thought the talk she had with Rayna was all that was going to happen.
The guests play outside with the water toys, oblivious.
Fraser tries his best to keep up with the service needs of the guests but he can't press clothing and make drinks and be on deck taking orders. Heather regroups and heads on deck to get drink orders at the hot tub.
Captain Lee has been working on staffing the third steward position all day, he gives that up to come for dinner with the guests in his black tux, wooooo!
Everyone looks beautiful, there is fancy food waiting to be served but Heather dropped a glass pitcher and cut her feet. She's trying to bandage them up while Rachel gets madder and madder, come on! You want her out there serving your stupid pear appetizer with bloody feet?? Let her staunch the bleeding!
They don't wait, Fraser and the deck crew serve instead.
Jake calls his fiancee in between serving, it's a marriage of convenience so she can get a British passport but he'd kind of like to make her his girlfriend at some point. Awwww who says love is dead? Jake's been trying to bang absolutely everyone aboard in the meantime.
Rachel does an amazing man course with cloches and smoke, this is probably the most impressive dinner I've seen yet on Below Deck.
An early night to bed, Heather says she'll have a talk with Rayna the following day to clear the air, wait, she says using the 'N' word was her way of 'creating a friendship' with Rayna? WAHT. WAT. That's like calling me Fatty McFirecrotchFatCarrotTop and expecting us to bond, but worse.
Heather sleeps through the start of her shift, Wes helps out by waking her then getting coffee with Rayna as Heather goes back to sleep. It's over an hour before she makes it up entirely and by that time Rayna woke up Fraser as well, who was working until 1:30 the night before.
Heather has dug up a third stew possibility, her previous second stew Kaylee.
The crew pulls anchor with all guests in the Bridge; no pressure! Oh wait, ALL THE PRESSURE! My Seanna is blowing all over the place, Captain Lee cracks jokes while trying not to visibly sweat.
He's concentrating as hard as he can while a guest asks questions about dolphins and whales and.
There's a lot of dramatic music for what ends up being a completely anti-climactic docking. The guests all clap while Jake rhymes.
I know, I don't get it either?
Captain Lee radios to the deck crew, telling them to get their 'hot asses' down to the deck, Eddie radios back from the deck with his crew "already down here, hot stuff. Come and get it' and I laughed for a full minute.
Guest departure goes well, they all see how hard the team worked, let's see if it's reflected in green. I will guess.....$20k USD based on the bewildering silent disco.
Eddie collapses into his bunk, he smells like 'Sweat And Desperation."
Tip Meeting!! What is it?? How much?? Show us!! $22k! $2000 each! I was close but it's not horseshoes booooo. Captain Lee gives them the following day off, I'm sure it won't be a trainwreck.
Boat cleanup resumes after the meeting, they all discuss the idea of a new hire starting and not everyone is for it. Rayna isn't. Eddie is skeptical.
Rachel is super sexual at all times, she spends a solid fifteen minutes throwing her nuts into Eddie and Wes's mouths and that wasn't even the most inappropriate thing she did that day.
Heather asks Rayna for a chat before they head out for their day off, Rayna resists. She doesn't have a problem, she just wants to be left alone.
You don't have a PROBLEM?
Heather persists and she and Rayna talk in the salon; Heather apologizing over and over. Rayna again says she accepts Heather's apology, but we all know Rayna does all her talking at other people. Except Jake, who she likes to yell at herself.
I don't know who's happier, the crew heading to a day off or Captain Lee watching them leave. Everyone needs a break!
Jake and Fraser visit on the trip into shore while Wes captains the catamaran all the way to Reggae Beach. Yay, Rachel isn't drinking this time!! She gets a little sideways on the liquor. Today she naps while Rayna, Fraser and Jake start drinking hard.
Wes is completely out of it,eh keeps trying to call Jessica Albert, the steward who left without notice and paddleboarding alone. Heather heads out there eventually.
After several shots, Rayna ruminates on Heather's apology, she doesn't think she can ever forgive Heather. Girl needs to be more forthcoming if she's processing and needs to deal with things further, this is the second time Heather has apologized and been assured that everything is fine.
Somehow...Fraser and Jake end up drunk on one paddleboard together, Jake facedown between Fraser's legs. Rayna is pisssssed to be left out and paddles out to interrupt.
THERE IS A HUGE SPIDER HANGING OVER EDDIE'S HEAD!!!! He barely makes it out alive, I cannot believe the size of that spider!!
Awww, Rayna gets super jealous of Fraser and Jake and will not leave them alone but I mean, it's just weird. Fraser eventually gives up and smokes on deck alone with Rayna and Jake have sex in his bunk.
And we're out! Until next time! Cheers