Before the third Rose Ceremony of Matt's The Bachelor season commenced, Matt was introduced to newcomers Brittany, a 23-year-old model from Chicago, IL; Kim, a 28-year-old ICU nurse from Los Angeles, CA; Catalina Morales Gomez, a 29-year-old former Miss Puerto Rico Universe from Caguas, Puerto Rico; Michelle Young, a 27-year-old teacher from Edina, MN; and Ryan Claytor, a 26-year-old dancer and choreographer from Brooklyn, NY.
Matt had a total of 23 women to choose from by the end of the night, and he decided to send home Kim as well as Kaili, a 26-year-old hostess from San Diego, CA, and Khaylah, a 28-year-old healthcare advocate from Bronx, NY, at the Rose Ceremony.
Following the Rose Ceremony, 20 women remained in the quest to win Matt's heart.
The 20 happy women included Anna Redman, a 24-year-old copywriter from Owatonna, MN; Pieper James, a 24-year-old graduate student from Happy Valley, OR; Kit Keenan, a 21-year-old fashion entrepreneur from New York, NY; Magi Tareke, a 32-year-old pharmacist from Adwa, Ethiopia; Rachael Kirkconnell, a 24-year-old graphic designer from Cumming, GA; and Abigail Heringer, a 25-year-old client financial from Salem, OR.
Matt also chose to keep Chelsea Vaughn, a 29-year-old runway model from Marietta, GA; Jessenia Cruz, a 27-year-old social media marketer from San Antonio, TX; Katie Thurston, a 29-year-old bank marketing manager from Lynnwood, WA; Serena Pitt, a 22-year-old publicist from Markham, ON; Serena Chew, a 24-year-old flight attendant from San Bruno, CA; and Bri Springs, a 24-year-old communications manager from Owatonna, MN.
The rest of the women were Lauren Maddox, a 29-year-old corporate attorney from Miami, FL; Mariela "Mari" Pepin, a 24-year-old marketing director from Luquillo, Puerto Rico; MJ Snyder, a 23-year-old hairstylist from Hudson, OH; Victoria Larson, a 27-year-old self-described "queen" from New York, NY; and four of the new girls -- Michelle, Ryan, Catalina and Brittany -- who received roses.
"It's really hard because I felt something for Sarah in the time we spent together," Matt said, adding that he had shared a bit of himself with Sarah and feared more women he liked may not want to be a part of his journey. "It's a really scary feeling."
Matt wondered if he was okay to continue putting his guard down and whether his bachelorettes could handle it.
Meanwhile, Victoria commented to the girls in response to Sarah's exit, "The trash took itself out."
Katie clapped back at Victoria and asked "the queen" to stop being "toxic" and mean, especially since Sarah had already left the resort and had issues she was dealing with in her life.
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Victoria in turn told Katie to shut up, and Katie said she found it unfortunate how Victoria seemed to thrive off the drama and putting other girls down.
Back on Matt's group date, Matt was feeling more confident in his relationships with the women, whom Matt admitted he was "intrigued" by and definitely interested in. Matt appeared to have great conversations with Pieper, MJ and Chelsea.
Chelsea sat down with Matt and shared how she had been chemically straightening her hair for years because most of her friends were white and she desperately wanted to fit in.
Chelsea explained how Black women have "a unique experience with their hair" and so shaving her head was a big deal, probably both terrifying and empowering at the same time. Their conversation ended with a kiss.
While Matt was on the group date, Victoria asked Katie for an apology because she had just been expressing herself about Sarah. But Katie pointed out, "Expressing yourself and name-calling are two different things."
"Umm, well, I can do whatever I want, and I can express myself with name-calling when I choose to," Victoria said.
"If that's how you want to express yourself and you want to be toxic and rude, go for it," Katie replied.
"Yeah, and if you want to express yourself with your dildo and think you're ready for an engagement, you can do that," Victoria snapped.
Katie argued that she loves her dildo and is very confident in what she wants to do in her life while Victoria was just showing her insecurities.
Katie asked Victoria what she was trying to accomplish, and Victoria said the way Katie talked to her was rude. Katie said Victoria was acting like a b-tch and she'd call her out whenever necessary, and Victoria basically threatened Katie to stop her behavior or else.
Back on Matt's group date, Matt offered the rose to Chelsea, and Abigail predicted a storm was brewing as the women were building stronger feelings for The Bachelor star.
It then became time for the cocktail party preceding Matt's third Rose Ceremony of the season.
Pieper told Matt that she's a strong woman, just like her mother, who wouldn't compromise herself for anybody, and Kit told the Bachelor that she felt chemistry with him but wanted to go deeper.
Matt told Kit that he'd be patient for her to open up, and he told the cameras that Kit was continuing to impress him. Matt also shared with Katie how he liked how she didn't care what other people thought about her.
Matt kissed Bri and said what he was feeling for her was real, and then Victoria explained how she was feeling "overwhelmed with emotions." Victoria started to cry and admitted she was scared about whether Matt really cared for her.
There was a lot of speculation in the house that Sarah might return, but Chris explained to Matt that he may not have met the girl of his dreams yet -- and so more were on their way.
"Because you're the Bachelor, we had a record response from women who wanted to be on this show. And to that end, there are some more incredible women that are dying to meet you and want a shot at finding love with you -- and they are arriving right now," Chris shared.
Matt was then introduced to five new beautiful women: Michelle Young; Ryan; Kim; Catalina, who walked in with a sash and crown on her head; and Brittany, who boldly went in for a quick and steamy makeout session with Matt "to make up for lost time."
Victoria complained the first arrival, Brittany, was not welcome and seemed to be "a backup option," but Brittany countered, "No, they actually saved the best for last."
"No, I don't think so," Victoria disagreed, before calling Brittany "a slore," which combines the words slut and whore.
Anna admitted she was "having a mental breakdown," and Mari complained she was not happy about the situation and definitely felt slighted.
Once inside, Victoria snatched the crown right off Catalina's head, saying she was the "only queen" in the cast.
Matt confessed his head was spinning, and he recognized there would be major hostility amongst the women and he'd be in big trouble going forward.
Once the new ladies got settled, Victoria asked to finish her conversation with Matt.
Anna said she recognized Brittany from Chicago and believed the new bachelorette was "definitely not here for Matt." And with that being said, Brittany interrupted Victoria's chat with Matt right when Victoria was explaining why they would be a great match.
Brittany told Matt that she felt a lot of tension with the other girls, and Matt attempted to build relationships with the new arrivals, which was tough for his original ladies -- the OGs -- to watch.
Matt really appeared to hit it off with Michelle, who flashed her big bright smile and made Matt laugh.
Once the Rose Ceremony commenced with 23 girls instead of just 18, Matt handed out roses to MJ, Pieper, Bri, Magi, Michelle, Mari, Ryan, Kit, Serena C., Abigail, Katie, Victoria, Lauren, Brittany, Jessenia, Anna, and Catalina.
(In addition to Chelsea earning herself a rose, Rachael and Serena P. had already received roses from their dates with Matt earlier in the week).
Matt therefore eliminated Kaili, Khaylah and newcomer Kim.
The next day, Victoria lamented how the previous evening was "so freakin' hard" because Matt had decided to give four of the five new girls roses. Victoria planned to put the new girls in their place and show Matt who's queen.
The next Date Card then arrived and it had the following women's names on it: Mari, Bri, Abigail, Brittany, Ryan, Catalina, Magi, Anna, and Victoria.
Anna was annoyed Brittany was on the date because she accused Brittany of "trying to start stuff" right away.
Matt then received a surprise visit from Season 20 The Bachelor star Ben Higgins, who planned the group date for Matt's ladies. Ben just advised Matt to be his realest and truest self at all times while giving as much of himself as possible.
Ben set up the "Fall In Love Fest," which was essentially an obstacle course with stations including a pumpkin boat race using paddles, searching for acorns in fuzzy squirrel costumes, a balance beam, a footrace and more.
Poor Magi got stuck in the water in her little pumpkin boat, but Mari really hustled and made her way across the finish line before any of the other bachelorettes. Victoria said she was glad one of the OG girls won the special prize, which was not revealed.
At the afterparty, Matt grabbed Anna first and she expressed how she had grown up boating and doing watersports. Brittany attempted to interrupt Anna's time, and Anna was furious given she had been on the show for three weeks and had yet to secure any real meaningful time with Matt.
Anna therefore told Brittany that she needed five more minutes, but Anna couldn't concentrate on her conversation with the newbie standing nearby and glaring at her.
"It's just disrespectful. I almost want to be like, 'Yo girl, I know some dirt on you. Don't mess with me, please," Anna said in a confessional.
Victoria talked to Anna about how Brittany "lacked a lot of class" because she had made out with Matt so soon and came across as "slutty," and then Anna revealed she had heard rumors in Chicago and people had gone "out of their way" to warn her to "watch out" for that girl.
"[I heard] that she is entertaining men for money," Anna told Victoria. "No one is sending my profile, like, 'Watch out for this girl!'"
Anna then explained to the cameras, "There is this rumor because she knows all of the rich men in Chicago that Brittany may be an escort. She may be having a transactional relationship with wealthy men."
Victoria said she could see Brittany playing Matt -- if that was what she was used to doing with men -- in order to get what she wanted.
The next Date Card then arrived with Michelle's name on it, and it said, "Let's make up for lost time." Michelle insisted she was on the show for the right reasons, but MJ and the other women were pissed since many of the OG ladies had yet to receive a one-on-one date.
Meanwhile, back on the group date, Matt said he appreciated Brittany's bold gestures and what he continued to learn about Anna, but in the end, he chose to give Bri the group-date rose.
Anna then confronted Brittany about the messages she had allegedly received from people in Chicago telling her to "watch out" for Brittany because she supposedly worked as an escort.
"No, I'm not an escort. It's just so ridiculous to even say that, to have that even come out of my mouth," Brittany replied. I've had a boyfriend my entire [life], since I was 16. Making a conclusion about me before you even know me, it's just -- that's sh-tty."
Brittany said she felt like all the women were against her and it was really hard, even though no one probably cared.
"Alright, then get out of the house," Victoria said with a laugh.
The next day, Jessenia, Serena C. and Kit discussed the rumor about Brittany, and Serena C. pointed out how she had heard Brittany "runs around with the big-spenders" but "isn't a working bottle-service girl."
While the girls gossiped amongst themselves, Matt took Michelle out on a date because he apparently felt something strong for her right off the bat. He said he loved the fact Michelle is a teacher and former athlete.
For their date, Chris Harrison planned an extreme scavenger hunt for Matt and Michelle in which they had to follow clues and embark on little adventures, from ziplining to a hotair balloon ride.
"I really enjoyed getting to know Michelle that first night that she pulled up. I love the fact that she's a teacher and a former athlete, and I'm looking forward to learning more about her today," Matt shared in a confessional.
Michelle laughed with Matt and the pair had a blast, and she told the cameras, "I do feel like he's a person who has all these qualities I'm looking for."
At one point, the couple was asked to reveal how many children they'd like to have, and Michelle and Matt said "three" at the exact same time.
Matt said he was taken with Michelle's presence because she managed to put him at ease and make him feel comfortable.
He felt like he had known Michelle for a long time, and the date apparently confirmed everything Matt had already felt, that he could have fun doing anything with Michelle.
"It feels like we're taking our connection in stride and we're not missing a beat... Matt is definitely somebody that I can picture myself with. I just want to continue to move forward and learn more and more about him and what makes him tick," Michelle gushed.
Meanwhile, a Date Card arrived for Katie, Pieper, Serena P., Rachael, Kit, Chelsea, Jessenia, Lauren, Serena C., and MJ.
"Are you willing to fight for love?" the Date Card read.
Back on Matt's date, he and Michelle enjoyed dinner in a luxury-car dealership lit up with neon lights and candles.
Matt gushed about how time flew by in Michelle's presence, which he noted was a good thing, and Michelle talked about how much she cares for her students and wants to guide them down the right path in life.
Michelle also said she had to comfort her students of color after George Floyd's killing.
Matt told Michelle that the work she was doing would shape a generation, and the pair had things in common given Matt works for ABC Food Tours, which enables underprivileged New York City youth to try local restaurants and learn how to live healthy and active lives.
The conversation flowed and Matt said Michelle had "depth" that he was looking for in a woman.
Matt said he was serious about finding a wife and felt so comfortable with Michelle, who embodies all the qualities he was looking for in a woman. Matt therefore gave Michelle a rose.
"I see all I need to see," Matt said in a confessional about Michelle and her qualities.
And Michelle seemed smitten with Matt and told the cameras she was on Cloud 9 with him.
The next day, Brittany was struggling to handle her emotions because of the rumor that was circulating about her. Katie sympathized with the "false rumor" and said Victoria and Anna had both been acting like "mean girls."
The girls on the second group date of the week then met Matt when he was working out in the middle of the woods.
Matt invited former five-time world boxing champion Mia St. John to the date, and the girls were asked to fight each other in front of a live audience that evening. But first, they got a chance to train and get some of their frustrations and anger out.
Everyone on the date were OGs, and Serena C. said they all respected each other -- even though she was looking forward to kicking ass.
Katie defeated Jessenia in a match, and then Serena C. trumped Kit.
As the matches continued, Serena P. was nearly knocked out when she took a punch to the nose, and so Matt called it and stopped the date in its tracks to comfort the bachelorette and make sure no one else got hurt.
At the afterparty, Rachael told Matt that she was having a tough time but believed in their connection, with or without five new girls in the mix. Matt kissed Rachael and then she immediately felt reset.
Matt gave Pieper some reassurance, and Pieper said she couldn't help but smile every time she was with the Bachelor.
Katie told the girls that at some point, they needed to get over their resentment and welcome the new girls into the house, but she felt totally alone in that.
Katie then pulled Matt aside to confide in him. Katie said she was standing up for all the new women against a mob mentality and the house was a toxic environment in which rumors were spreading that could ruin certain women's lives.
Katie suggested that Matt should address the mean-girl behavior, and Matt said he'd absolutely take care of it. Matt couldn't believe bullying was going on, and he didn't want to see anyone's family or career negatively impacted because of the show.
"If someone thinks they're going to bully their way to my heart, that's not how it works... and I need to get to the bottom of it," Matt said.
The episode then ended on a cliffhanger with Matt preparing to confront his bachelorettes about the drama in the house.