Ugh – The reign of Ryhlee Gerber has returned on Below Deck, and this is one kind of tyranny I’m not here for. It’s bad enough that the primary, Michael, was literally the creepiest grossest Lifetime Movie lecher of a charter guest there ever was.
Michael kept asking Simone Mashile to go shark hunting (was that some sort of double entendre I’m not getting?) but he should have asked our fishing boat captain Ryhlee. She could speared him and presented him to chef Kevin Dobson on a paleo platter.
Honestly bringing Rhylee back was just so hopelessly insincere. We all know Captain Lee Rosbach would never rehire someone who doesn’t respect her superiors or the chain of command, and the deflated way he defended his decision is all we need to know of his true feelings. With a heavy heart Ashton Pienaar accepts his burden to try and tame Rhylee from an attention-seeking lunatic to a competent deckhand. I mean I’m 100% positive they can find someone hard working (and hot) mid-season, but that person may not ruthlessly destroy a happy team of otherwise deckhands.
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Right away Ashton warns Tanner Sterback and Brian de Saint Pern that Rhylee can – correction: will – be a handful so that they should go overboard to include her and treat her as one of the team. I thought this was a judicious way of handling Rhylee’s explosive insecurities. Ashton’s in a tight spot and truly needs all hands on deck. Brian’s knee injury is getting worse. To get through an already grueling charter he takes a ton of pain meds and ogles Courtney Skippon‘s Instagram for moral support, but he’s still having difficulty walking. Luckily the guests want only Ashton and Simone!
Oh, Simone. Simone. Michael is a man passed by sexual harassment and awful demeaning comments. He keeps mentioning Simone’s ethnicity, literally trying to corner her, and repeatedly propositions her. It gets so intense that Kate Chastain decides to pull Simone from service – a skill she badly needs to practice – and shove her back into the laundry where at least she can blast the hot steam in Michael’s face if he makes an advance. Or hide behind the towering pile of soiled sheets.
Michael not only harassed Simone, he made comments towards Captain Lee, was rude and ungracious; treating the crew like second-class citizens. His ‘friend’ Shaeley, or whatever her name was, wasn’t much better as she threw herself at Ashton and crossed the line into uncomfortable territory. These people were just tragic. I think the two nice and polite girls must have been hired to play their friends on TV, because they were hot and wanted a free vacation. They seemed to have no interaction with the rest of the group other than sitting silently at meals and occasionally commenting. Also they seemed nice, so there’s that. Michael was clearly making up for feeling insecure over being the invisible nerd at FSU, but this boat is no place to workout high school inferiority complexes! Especially when Rhylee is already on board.
For the charter, Rhylee gets along peaceably. She’s friendly and accommodating, works hard, accepts Ashton’s pep talks, and seems genuinely excited to learn the ropes while seeing Thailand. Definitely a honeymoon phase. A very VERY short-honeymoon phase! Instead it was Kevin who was back to his old nasty ways. This guy is SUCH A CHUMP. It’s so bizarre to me that the deck crew seem to really like him, but he treats Kate and the stews like literal servants!
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For some reason Kevin has decided Kate cannot handle organizing service. He actually compares her skills to no better than a Burger King Drive-thru, which proves that Kevin has not partaken in enough fast food while he was studying abroad in America!
First Kate is talking to Captain Lee about Rhylee’s arrival when Kevin decides breakfast must be served that instant and orders the deckhands to help bring bowls to the table. The food arrives so hot the guests burn their mouths! Kevin expects Kate to do nothing but wait, arms behind her back, at his side until he calls for food. He obviously doesn’t care about the satisfaction of the guests, only that his food is presented in a way that bolsters his ego.
Day two the day is Pirate Theme. Which means say “Get liiiiiiiit, Matey!” while scratching your penis with a plastic hook (Michael). Gross. Kevin decides ‘pirate theme’ translates into a big old American rack of beef for dinner so Kate decorates the table accordingly with county fair chic. Captain Lee joins the guests for dinner, sans pirate ensemble, but the bawdy humor is very very much still living the pirate life.
As dinner is about to go out Kevin again decides Kate isn’t handling the service correctly. Kevin announces that the girls will serve the sides from a chafing dish while the deckhands will carry the individually plated main. The entire arrangement makes no sense – why on earth would you want 6 people crowding around the table balancing plates?! Kevin of course follows this parade up to the salon to ‘announce’ and ‘present’ his wondrous creations to the world. It was a steak, people. Served with green beans.
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Later that night after Kate declares that Courtney and Simone are not allowed to stay up alone with creepy Michael, she confronts Kevin about his grand plan to subjugate her; morphing her and the stews into robotic sister wives with Michelle Duggar haircuts and animatronic arms fused to serving platters. Kate won’t stand for being undermined and she warns Kevin that her feelings are hurt, which means this is war. Kevin looks utterly shocked – I’m not sure if was over being confronted, or because he assumed Kate knew her serving skills were bad. Kevin is just trying to perfect meal service, not force Kate from her role. Kate determines that if Kevin keeps exerting his ‘control freak’ on her domain she will make his job a living hell. Trust us, Kevin, she will.
On the last morning of charter Brian’s knee is so bad his calf has swollen double-sized and he can’t even stand on it so a doctor is required to come on board. Brian winds up bed-bound after getting a shot in his butt to clear up the infection. They are passing antibotics out in Thailand more liberally than they are cocktails!
Docking goes without a hitch and everyone is thrilled to see the back of Michael, but then he gets the last laugh when he gives them a paltry $15k tip. That’s bacause Michael is fronting. He’s wandering around acting how he thinks the idle rich behave: entitled and taking what he wants – including people – and demanding everyone treat him with male privilege. He’s a disgusting loser.
The bad tip puts everyone in a cranky mood, which is no way to start their crew night out. Courtney graces Brian with a kiss to tide him over while he remains quarantined in bed. Courtney better up her game because Rhylee has her eyes on Brian, and her claws will come for Courtney’s throat. I personally don’t know how Brian could possibly go from Rhylee to Courtney, but the male psyche continues to be a mystery I simply do not want to bother dissecting for fear of my disappointment growing even deeper. Also I always imagine that Rhylee smells like fish and old cigarette smoke.
That night they’re barely situated at the table for dinner before the fireworks begin between Rhylee and Kevin. Now dollars to donuts (and I like both equally) these two will wind up hate-fucking before the season is out, but for now they’re just taking out their frustrations on each other? I really don’t know. I don’t know what Rhylee even has animosity over after 2 days on boat with everyone bending over backwards to kiss her ass as she eases into life aboard Valor (again).
The drama escalates when Kate asks Kevin to order some appetizers and Rhylee pipes up that she wants him to pick something paleo for her. Apparently Rhylee believes she can drink more if she eats healthy, aka giant hunks of meat. Kevin freaks out because he’s not a diet expert and if she’s on a restrictive regiment she should read the menu herself. I really didn’t get it, but the next thing these two were screaming at each other about being paleo or gluten-free and why Kevin isn’t her chef. Kevin eventually told her to eat a dick, which is at least paleo!
Kevin walked away with Tanner to cool down but when he returned reignited with Rhylee because she kept calling him “chef” in a really pejorative way just to poke his buttons. Simone is here for seeing Kevin get put in his place after all the condescending crap he’s leveled on the stews, but Kate is embarrassed and annoyed by the display. She just wants to slink away in relative peace to nurse Cheetos dipped in white wine spritzers. Courtney was just wide-eyed and subtly distasteful as if she was attending a dinner theater that turned out to be unfortunately low-brow and not terribly well-acted. I was literally waiting for her to ask for a refund after threatening a negative review.
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Kevin storms away from the table again, but this time Ashton gets involved. After trying to calm Rhylee down he finds Tanner and Kevin to warn them that they all have to remain strong and united against the force of her destruction. Literally – like she’s some sort of black widow. Rhylee interrupts to start whining about how she’s not included and being blamed for causing problems, when it’s not her fault. Ashton straight up tells her to “shut up” and stop acting like an idiot. And shockingly Rhylee did actually shut up… if only for 10 seconds.
Well this is going to end verrrry badly. I don’t think the fight was entirely Rhylee’s fault. Kevin instigated it by getting angry at her for no reason. It seemed mainly like their attempts at humor were miss-firing, and kept mistaking the other person’s joke for a jab. I just have ZERO patience for Rhylee’s uncouth trashy antics. She just looks a hot mess and desperate, and it’s tiresome. I actually enjoy the dynamics of the cast getting along so I resent when production attempts these curveballs to amp up drama.
Next week we learn Brian’s fate and if his knee doesn’t improve he may lose his chance with Courtney forever (the extended preview verify he doesn’t leave) and Ashton deals with the fallout from his fight with Rhylee!
TELL US – ARE YOU HAPPY TO HAVE RHYLEE BACK? IS KEVIN COMPLETELY OUT OF LINE OR HAS KATE’S SERVICE BEEN SLACKING?
[Photo Credits: Bravo]