Without a doubt the unofficial theme of this season’s Below Deck was dicks. Being one, not being one, swinging one around, serving one on a platter, eating one, flashing one… And in the case of Kevin Dobson ALL OF THE ABOVE. Good for you Chef, way to make an impression!
Staying on theme it all started with a big ol’ cock, made of cake, that went over like failed viagra on a Tinder hook-up. As Kevin walked his penile accomplishment out to a room full of women talking about the subtleties of aging and the various phases of life, he reminded me of a toddler who peed in the potty for the first time, but announced it to the check-out lady at Target. Needless to say no one was impressed, and he’d probably have gotten the same reception from his future in-laws as he did from the charter guests and Captain Lee Rosbach.
The problem was that the primary, Jemele, who requested a penis cake to celebrate her bachelorette party, had passed out drunk just before dessert and Kate Chastain failed to inform Kevin. It was quite literally Kevin’s just desserts. He had called Kate a “dick” earlier over Pyrex dishes, and now she was dishing it out with a sparkler on top.
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Instead of the big hurrah he had spent all day preparing for, Kevin was forced to slink back to the kitchen and viciously Lorena Bobbit his own prosthetic penis before plating it as a proper dessert. I don’t think Homer or George Lucas could portend better metaphor. So Kate, please come collect your Pulitzer (or is it an Emmy?) for reality TV writing. The cake was still delicious. Better than good. In fact it was amazing – even Kate agreed, but Kevin was throwing a big stroppy fit in the most un-British of ways as a result of having his ego checked, instead of stroked.
Kevin got so angry that he stormed out of the galley to sulk (and I think chugged two beers, but they could’ve been Red Bulls). Kevin is also worried about the impression he left on the guests and Captain Lee. Kate feels no remorse. None whatsoever. Especially since this is, quite literally, the last supper.
After the guests went to bed, and Captain Lee ensured everyone that he wasn’t upset over the gaffe, Kevin ripped into Kate for being a terrible chief stew and accuses her of not being able to train her staff. Courtney Skippon and Simone Mashile were literally paralyzed as Kevin and Kate eviscerated each other over who is less professional. Secretly, though, Simone, who feels slighted and gaslit (gaslighted?) by Kate, was enjoying this.
Kevin is an obnoxious buffoon and a total misogynist, and both he and Kate are incapable of taking constructive criticism. However, I think Kevin made their working relationship untenable and Kate met him where he was by getting equally petty. He is to blame though – he initiated this pattern. Basically these are two people who go together like a seafood extravaganza and canned crab. Or since Kevin’s ideas about how to interact with women come straight out of 1950, maybe he’s so mean to Kate because he’s secretly in love with her, and it’s not his fault the he doesn’t know how to behave maturely around a woman he likes? That’s what our moms and grandmas would say, right?! (WORST ADVICE EVER).
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So that’s how the last charter went down.
The next morning Kevin attempts to redeem himself with the guests by preparing a ginormous breakfast, pulling out all the stops – and also custard buns to go with cock cake – but Kate really doesn’t even bother trying to keep up the act that they’re a team because she’s furious that Kevin insulted her in front her team. Again. Also luckily for Kevin, Jemele was joking about the cake, and bummed (pun intended!) that she missed it.
The guests leave by spraying $200 worth of champagne all over the front of the boat, and then sending the crew off with their largest tip of the season: $20,000. Their being impressed with Kevin’s cuisine and Simone’s service was a large part of that, but imagine if they actually thought Kate liked them too? Captain Lee is proud everyone pulled it together and made it through an entire season without him having to fire someone, but is that really something to be gloating about in light of everything that happened? Perhaps this is a case of Below Deck /Bridge – in which the Captain really had no idea what was going on in the literal crew mess. Becuase honestly someone should have been fired (that person should have been Ashton Pienaar).
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Speaking of, Ashton is eager to end the season on a good note with everyone – even Rhylee Gerber. In preparation for their final night out where Captain Lee has arranged a private beach with something called a Full Moon party, Ashton sits Rhylee down to lecture her about behaving so she doesn’t ruin everyone’s fun. Rhylee, sick of fighting and just wanting to get off this toxic yacht, smiles and nods, which has been the fate of women for generations. I really with Dolly Parton’s 9 to 5 character Doralee was on board this boat to enact a little vigilante justice — in heels! Lord knows she could do some things with a shammy that would make Ashton wet his quick-dry, anti-chafing shorts!
And then there is Tanner Sterback. This poor little delusional, lost soul still thinks he has a chance to hook up with Kate. Hilarious really.
Also there is Brian de Saint Pern. Things between he and Courtney are awkward to say the least. If Kevin’s life is reduced to a dismembered dick cake, Courtney and Brian’s relationship is the champagne Jemele jizzed all over the stern (prowl?) of the boat. Basically it’s sad, it sucks, and it’s probably better that they’ll never see each other again, however no one wants to end a season constructing the Rice Krispee treat balls but never tasting them.
There is nothing more tragic than what is supposed to be a rave, but is only sparsely populated by 5 people you hate and have been stuck in enclosed spaces hating for 4 months, and now you are now stuck on an tragic island pseudo-rave with them. Also booze amplifies both love and hate, so… Also a rave is supposed to be a joyous thing filled with anonymous revelers and endless possibilities. This was Coachella after it forgot to take it’s Wellbutrin.
After about 2 drinks, as the fire eaters work their magic and illuminate the skies (and everyone sits around listlessly watching), Brian sidles over to Courtney and begs her for one last hurrah, but first she has to agree to admit she’s full of shit. But really BRIAN is full of shit, but he won’t admit that until she says it first. Because Brian is emotionally 12, and also full of shit (and cheap beer which leads to more shit). What’s a girl to do but indulge in a little end of vacation fling? I don’t blame her, because Brian is hot – until words come out of his mouth, but still to quote Courtney herself, “ugh.”
Meanwhile, Ashton makes the smartest decision he made all season by passing out in one of the teepees and avoiding the party all together. Unfortunately, Kevin and Tanner make the opposite decisions. They just keep drinking and drinking and drinking…
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At first it seems like things are looking up for Kevin and Kate. He asks her to be in a photo with him and Rhylee and it appears they are going to end the season, not as friends, but civilly at least. However serious discussions and insults do not pair well with alcohol. For whatever reason Kevin decides to tell Kate she sucks at her job and the feeling is mutual. Of course Tanner will never let a ‘bruh’ go down in flames (even when he dives in between the burning letters of the Valor sign) so he defends Kevin, thus dashing his last hopes of hooking up with Kate.
As Tanner stumbles around the beach trying to convince Kate to give him a another chance, sober Rhylee and Simone, narrating the whole scenario from beach chairs, and laugh at how lucky they are to be free of this mess. It was the best part of the Full Moon flop. It was like Rhylee and Simone were commentators for The Bachelor hook-up Olympics. And Kevin was disqualified for bad sportsmanship after he drunkenly KICKED SAND IN KATE’S FACE BECUSE HE WAS BUTT-HURT THAT SHE DOENS’T LIKE HIS COOKING. The only positive I can say is that Kevin called Kate “bruh’ as he did it, so maybe it’s like Kate passed some secret initiation test and is officially one of the guys now after being relentlessly hazed all season?
I feel like Kevin is living in his own personal Lord of The Flies here. Like Kevin is chasing the pig, but the pig is actually his own reflection… I don’t get paid enough to write an intersection of Bravo and classic British novels, but it’s totally plausible.
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Also, HONESTLY, Kevin. REALLY!? Even Brian, who was admittedly very much trying to get into Courtney’s silk panties, called Kevin out. And as Kate wiped sand out of her eyes with her tears it was time to carry a very drunk, literally incoherent, Kevin back to Valor. Of course Brian also tried to silence Kate on the tender when she attempted to pick another fight with Kevin over the sand, but maybe that was actually for the best considering that no one was in the mood for another epic fight and Kevin was too drunk to even speak words. I think he was honestly speaking in tongues or pig latin.
Like sand through Kate’s eyes these are the dumbass days of the bruh’s lives. Once on the yacht, Kevin proceeds to strip naked and is literally running around with his sandy (and pasty white) ass and dick hanging out. That is one cock no one is impressed with or wants to eat! Simone straight up laughs at it. Ahhh Kevin – showing his ass, was such karma! And Kevin said the penis cake debacle was the most embarrassing moment of his life. HA!
Meanwhile, Kate retreats to one of the guests cabins, and Courtney pulls Brian into another one. Too bad that’s not where it ended!
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The next morning as they all packed up to go, it is Kevin’s turn to show no remorse as he shrugs off kicking sand at Kate by blaming it on Ashton-nesia, aka being black-out drunk, then decides he actually has nothing to apologize for since Kate deserved it after insulting his culinary skills. Um, Kevin does know that getting sand in one’s eyes can blind a person, right?! Also how petty as fuck and immature, beyond obnoxious and insecure can a grown-ASS man get?!
Kevin’s swan song was leaving the boat without saying goodbye to Kate because she doesn’t deserve a minute more of his time. When Kate realizes that he ghosted her, she literally chases him down and calls BYE KEVIN but he keeps walking as if he hasn’t heard her. WOWZERS.
Tanner wakes up still wasted, and decides why let the party end when even one person (himself) is still ready to party? So he keeps drinking, and stumbles off the boat back home to mommy who will give him scrambled eggs and excuses.
As for everyone else, they kept it civil and said their farewells with class. Even Rhylee and Ashton managed that! Ashton sniveled up to Captain Lee and thanked him for teaching him so much, and also forcing him to work with Rhylee. Managing and tolerating her taught Ashton so much. Suuuure, Jan. Also I’m sure Rhylee appreciates doing such a service in forwarding the cause of patriarchy in the world of yachting!
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Kate and Ashton exchange a terse, and insincere, farewell, and then Kate announces her retirement from yachting. It seems she is done for good. She has moved to NYC and is ready for a new chapter in her life. I do agree it’s time for Kate to leave Below Deck. The only thing I can agree with Kevin on is that Kate’s heart was not in this season. Yes, a major part of that was probably the insane acrimony she faced, but even without this difficult crew it seemed Kate was over it. And I’m over it too. The next two weeks are the reunion, and then this uber toxic season is over.
TELL US – DO YOU THINK KATE IS MAKING THE RIGHT DECISION TO LEAVE YACHTING? DID KEVIN OWE KATE AN APOLOGY?
[Photo Credits: Bravo]