Ahhhh… we are midway through the charter season on Below Deck Sailing Yacht. As well known from previous iterations of Below Deck, this means a time of shifting loyalties, relationships beginning to either fray or cement, and crew-wide fatigue.
Over on the rockiest beach in the world, Jenna MacGillivray and Adam Glick arrive prepared to host a beach BBQ for the guests only to find what looks like a hoarder emptied their storage shed on the shore. What reality show is this?!
Ciara Duggan and Madison Stalker have been there for 4 hours but it might as well have been 4 years. They look like they just escaped a shipwreck and were required to use Madison’s bra as a fishing net. They are sweaty, burnt, hobbling around creatures surprised to recognize other forms of human life (or perhaps disappointed that those human lives were Adam and Jenna?). This is what being off the boat unsupervised does for a yachtie!
Now it’s T-30 minutes until the guests, dressed for dinner at the country club, arrive and nary an umbrella is unfolded. Jenna is in overdrive, panic mode. OK, seriously, what the eff was going on that island all day?
Madison is constantly complaining about being tired, and I agree Jenna has her running around like she lives on a hamster wheel. But, the girl just sat around and gossiped for 4 hours and didn’t even radio for assistance when they were having trouble installing the picnic provisions! Even when the guests showed up mid-way through to ‘sunbathe’ aka get their backsides exfoliated by tiny pebbles, Madison and Ciara still weren’t motivated to get shit done! In this instance, Jenna has a right to be irritated.
Miraculously, everything gets jammed into place, and Adam even manages to get a fire lit to cook over just as the guests show up. Dinner looked sublime. I hope he puts those sandy crocs right back on the countertop where they belong after their trip to the beach!
Anyway, back on the boat, Madison is shunted into 3rd stew position as Georgia Grobler is temporarily promoted to second in command with the very illustrious task of preparing a top-secret pink party to celebrate the primary, Yana’s birthday. Yana is 30 going on 13 in case anyone was wondering.
Georgia has come a long way. Initially, she could barely separate towels from t-shirts and was mixing up everyone’s laundry, but now Georgia is motivated by the power of sexual chemistry with Paget Berry, a human-sized approximation of a gingerbread man, and everything is coming up roses. Pink roses to be exact! Captain Glenn Shephard is totally wowed by her simple and elegant table decor.
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Meanwhile, Madison glowers in the background as she irons bed sheets. Georgia, Georgia, Georgia! Jenna, Jenna, Jenna! What about Madison, Madison, Madison?!
The guests loved everything about dinner except for one lone complaining banshee named
Carole Baskin Carla who expects Jenna to personally serve her each oyster. Does she want Jenna to pour it into her mouth without smudging her lipstick too? Cause Jenna only pays close attention to Adam! Is it me or is Carla just an annoying person sounding name?
That night, even though there isn’t much to clean up, Madison is awake until 3 am. She’s trying to stay up late enough to intercept Parker McCown, as he wakes up for his 4 am earlies. When Madison physically cannot wait up any later, she leaves Parker a gushy note alongside breakfast of granola and coconut water. Did she pour the coconut water on the granola and leave it? Did Parker eat soggy granola? Since he’s been breastfeeding all this time, that must’ve passed for texture. The note is cute. High schoolie and sweet.
Since Parker is also high schoolie, Parker shows off the note to all the people he wants to impress. Basically Jenna and Paget. But NOT Ciara! Parker is well-aware that Madison has a huge crush on him. Just in case he didn’t know though, Jenna informs him. Jenna was just being bitchy and trying to embarrass Madison. Since it’s confessional hour here on Below Deck Sailing Yacht, Jenna also tells Parker she’s the one whose been joking about him still being breastfed. High caliber professionalism here!
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I’ll concede that Madison is frustrating. She doesn’t follow the check-lists. She tries to do too much and therefore doesn’t work efficiently, but it is Jenna’s job to LEAD. Not merely pass judgement and make comments without constructive criticisms, but to take the time to go through a turn-down with Madison. To make sure she’s got the bases covered. Jenna also needs to take time to point out what Madison is doing right. Take time to draw a diagram with an I Can Do It! chart for how to get dressed in the morning and include, “Put on a bra”. Do one for nighttime night that includes, “Remove eye makeup” Seriously Madison is approaching Tammy Faye Baker category here with those lashes!
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The next morning Madison is a walking zombie of exhaustion, whereas Parker is an over-eager beaver. This is because Parker has just received communique from his ex-girlfriend and the love of his life, Kaiti. Has he told Madison about Kaiti’s sudden re-emergence in his life at this pivotal juncture where he may consider making out with her one drunken night out? Nope. Not a chance. Just like Paget hasn’t told Ciara that he’s ready to get touched in a sexual way for the first time but she’s not the girl he wants to become a man with.
Breakfast would have been a roaring success except for Carla, who can’t lift her arms to reach for the serving platter. Moving is just sooooo much work. She’s like relaxing comfortably in her booth and can’t be expected to shift her weight, so she asks Jenna to serve her one piece of non-turkey bacon, a tiny scoop of granola, a smidge of yogurt, a bite of brioche. And one egg curd. Jenna is exasperated. Like is it really her job to cater to these guests? Ugh! Who do they think they are?! Adam?! Also, do you think Carla just can’t physically get around all the neck ruffles she’s wearing. ON. A. YACHT. What are her outfits here?!
The day 2 plan is for the guests to go snorkeling and paddle boarding. Even though they don’t like water. Or fish. Or moving from their seats. Also, Carla doesn’t like parasailing. She must have confused the name of the boat, Parsifal III, with a service they do not provide. But just in case Carla is warning everyone that floating in the sky without having someone to personally serve grapes into your mouth is, like, boring.
Also boring: sitting inside the cabin for hours, slurping Pina coladas while you wait for Parker to scout a scuba spot. Aka having an afternoon off. Gotta hand it to Parker who’s gotten mighty crafty about using guest experience’s to take prolonged breaks! When Jenna isn’t looking Parker takes it upon himself to approach the guests and propose doing some recon for a good snorkeling spot. Then he reports to Captain Glenn that the guests asked him to do this. Parker takes forever swimming around and asking about fishing. After Parker botched the sun bathing expedition the previous day, why would the guests trust his advice again?!
Instead of the guests getting some sun, or doing anything, while waiting for Parker’s return, the women sit inside the dark galley, sipping cocktails and staring at their phones. Yana was probably playing Candy Crush thinking it’s a dieting app. The husbands played backgammon on the aft deck. At least they were using their brains!
On Parker Patrol, he spotted a turtle. Then overheated the tender because he didn’t empty the sand trap. After receiving some radio instructions from Byron Hissey, Parker finally returns to pick up the guests around 4 PM. As they head off Captain Glenn reminds him that the sails go up at 6/6:30. Luckily these people have an incredibly short attention span for anything so they only need about 15 minutes to look at nature.
Carla complains that it takes too long to lift the sails. I so wish the wind would’ve blown a drink on her lap. Everyone else was wonderfully appreciative. Even Yana, who presented as if she would be so difficult, turned out to be kind and lovely. All Adam had to do was plan entire meals that do not include starch, fat, sugar, or calories and she’s happy. Adam nails dinner with a cream-free lobster bisque, elevated surf and turf over a celery root puree (no potatoes!), and a chocolate mousse. Jenna ups the ante by asking Georgia and Parker to serenade the guests. Georgia performs an original song written for Paget’s innocent soul about loving tenderly and tepidly, through love notes written in laundry detergent and put in one’s underwear. Even Captain Glenn gushes about Georgia’s singing.
Meanwhile, Madison gets stuck, once again, covering Georgia’s turn-downs. And since Georgia also left 62 piles of laundry – including some belonging to Carla who brought her dry cleaning on board with her – Madison has to temporarily cover this too.
Believing turndowns are finished, Madison calls Jenna in to check, only to realize that Georgia never completed the floors when Jenna bitches at her. When Madison thinks Jenna is distracted drooling over Adam’s ego, she confronts Georgia about sloppy work. Unfortunately for Madison, Jenna overhears and intervenes. The next morning Jenna tells Georgia she knows Madison was trying to misplace blame. Instead of defending Madison, Georgia sucks-up to Jenna. Georgia — bros before hoes!
That night Madison stays up after 4 am again. Even though Jenna warned her to be in bed 30 minutes after the guests go down. While she should’ve been cleaning up Madison vents to Ciara about how unprofessional and disgusting Jenna and Adam are together and that the real on-board couple goals are Ciara and Paget. They are? I mean yeah, Adam and Jenna are gross. And making out in the crew mess is well, messy, but Paget and Ciara are no goals.
Madison’s goal should be to complete her tasks on time. Instead, she’s more focused on securing alone time with Parker whom she intercepts at 4 am. While she is drooling over him, he’s drooling over the texts messages his ex just sent. Yuck, Parker, yuck.
And then it is time for obligatory docking drama! A theme of every Below Deck, for ad infinitum, without fail. Unlucky for Captains Lee and Sandy, Captain Glenn is an Tetris-playing wizard who could claim victory in any old-skool video game competition to win the heart of the hottest girl and avenge the nerds of any 1980’s teen movie. He finagled that yacht into a spot so tight it was like putting a hot dog in a bun. It was amazing. It should’ve involved lube, but instead, he was relying on the guidance from people like Parker. The docking skill deserved far more respect than it received.
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The guests left full of praise. Mainly because Adam didn’t blow anyone’s diets. The tip was generous. Captain Glenn announces that the following day will be the customary mid-season resort visit. Everyone should be happy. But everyone is not. Jenna is not happy. Jenna is not happy about Madison. What a coincidence, because Madison is not happy about Jenna. Except Madison is complaining to Ciara and Georgia, whereas Jenna is complaining to Captain Glenn.
(In the above photo Captain Glenn instructed everyone to look into each other’s eye while they toasted or else they’d be cursed with 7 years of bad sex. Paget is looking directly into Georgia’s eyes. He then made a ‘joke’ that he didn’t want “any more” bad sex. Ciara, as you can see, is looking directly into Paget’s eyes. Or trying to!)
In fairness to Jenna, her complaints were warranted: Madison is distracted, disorganized, and doesn’t give herself enough rests. Captain Glenn immediately asks what they can do, together, to help get Madison in better working order. The real question is what can Jenna to do boost morale and better support her team? She seems to do well with Georgia, so what is it about Madison? Jenna feels Madison doesn’t seem to appreciate the opportunities yachting affords, but how would Jenna know since she’s never even bothered to get to know Madison or engage with her in anyway besides barking “Check list” and “drinks” and “dinner service” at her?
I just don’t know who I think is in the wrong here?
TELL US – WHO IS IN THE RIGHT: MADISON OR JENNA? IS PARKER PLAYING MADISON?
[Photo Credits: Bravo]