We open this episode of 19 Kids and Counting with more declarations of who is engaged, who is courting and who is a pathetic spinster- the usual. I will say right now- this pair of episodes were somewhat lackluster and not full of the usual Duggar doins' we have all come to expect. I think I know what they are up to. Next week is The Wedding and I have a feeling the Duggar's are doing the only thing they know- saving it for marriage. See what I did there?
The first episode has Jim-Bob and Michelle taking Jill, Derick, Jessa and Ben on a triple date. Based on the previews of a police car pulling over the speeding Duggar mobile, I knew we were in for some kind of cringe-inducing, staged shenanigans but it was even worse than I could have imagined. The occasion they were celebrating on this little date was Jim-Bob (who I keep wanting to call SpongeBob....) and Michelle's 30th wedding anniversary. They show a montage of old school pictures of them both and we learn that Michelle was once the (pretty hot) head cheerleader at her high school and Jim-Bob was a skinny, scrawny nerd who thought she was way out of his league. Man, did he show her- made her his very own baby machine. Shuck those pom poms, Michelle! The Lord and My Loins have plans for you!
So, the car is speeding up and we all know what's next- Jim-Bob is pulled over and a cop makes them all get out of the car. It is immediately clear that the cop is in on it and each couple is cuffed together. I was getting all sorts of excited (I may have gasped and shushed my husband) that Jessa and Ben would accidentally touch hands and BOOM, pregnant, but noooo. They had to wear TWO sets of hand cuffs attached to each other so there was no chance of their sinful mitts brushing by each other. May I add a serious note- the way this family treats sex and physical acts of love reminds me of 6th graders. They get so giggly and awkward at the mere mention of a kiss. To each, their own- but I truly cannot understand their juvenile and stilted views on pre-marital hugging and kissing. Ok, back to our regularly scheduled programming.
Moving on, we have Josh Duggar getting ready to run a 5K as his "weight loss" story arc for this season continues. Anna is not pregnant so I suppose they had to figure out something else to keep them interesting. Anna, whom I must say is pretty hilarious, is still in that orange make-up. Please, TLC- get this girl the right shade of base. She is so cute and it's just distracting.
Can I say again that Anna is where it's at? Instead of being all glazed over and worshipful when she talks about Josh, she gets kind of eye-rolly and seems to have her own thoughts. It is really refreshing after the Stepford wife vibe from Michelle and Jill about their men. Anna has a mind of her own and her kids are a laugh riot. I am going to start a petition for them to have their own show. Minus Josh, because yuck.
Josh states that this 5K should take him about 30 minutes and with his man boobs akimbo, he sets off. He has to walk after a very short while because he is not in the shape he thought he was. Again, the tater tot casserole diet has failed him. He makes an offensive comment about how a woman in a tutu is beating him and then speeds his way to a 46 minute finish. Anna and the kids are proud and he calls his trainer to brag.
We return to the creepiest triple date of all time. The trio of couples head to a park where they are to make lunch while hand-cuffed together. Jim-Bob and Michelle explain that they are teaching them lessons about marriage (while hand-cuffed...getting kinky, Duggars!) The couples are to spread peanut butter onto bread and make sandwiches while chained to each other. This is when Jim-Bob says the only thing that makes sense to me- that he tries to find ways to serve Michelle and make her life better every single day. I actually think that is very sweet and I hope it's true- after stretching out her uterus for 171 months total in an attempt to repopulate Tontitown, AK with his spawn, the least he can do is grab her an iced tea when she wants one.
Michelle yabbers on about making sacrifices for each other in marriage (which only makes me think of her laying down whenever Jim-Bob is in the mood....ickkk) and then, they head to a local obstacle course where the cuffed couples are to navigate this tricky business while latched together. Both young couples get through it and no one ends up accidentally pregnant so the outing is considered a blazing success. Might I mention how unfair it is that these girls are forced to wear restrictive denim skirts so they cannot possibly do anything in a quick and agile fashion? I think I have figured out why they wear them- to keep them in one place. Unable to run. I just involuntarily shuddered.
The group heads on over to a family friend's house to shoot a bow and arrow while hand-cuffed together. Sounds like there might be some Duggar blood loss because, arrows and ungainly hand cuff situation. The family friend is named Smitty, which is kind of awesome. The courting couples get their chance to shoot. Jill and Derick are somewhat awkward and I think I know why- in this process, Derick's hand was smooshed RIGHT UP AGAINST JILL'S BOOB! Now we know how that baby happened. Either that, or a bathroom baby was made when Jill had to pee and Derick was forced to accompany her. I'm guessing Jim-Bob had the key somewhere but let me dream, ok?
The next episode starts with Michelle explaining that Josie is upset that Johannah is getting some one-on-one time with her mommy that day. Michelle is practicing with Josie how to say that she is happy for her sister even though she is upset that it's not her turn. That's it, Michelle! Invalidate your 4-year old's completely legitimate feelings of not getting enough attention from her mother and make her plaster a fake smile on her face. Poor little thing.
Michelle takes Johannah horseback riding and all I could think was how shitty it must be to try riding a horse in a skirt. Let the girl wear pants, for the love of God. Johannah has fun and all is right in the world.
Jessa and Ben take the kids out for pizza and wax poetic about how this is good parenting prep and discuss what kind of parents they will be. Again, they are 21 and 19 years old respectively. It bums me out so hard that this it their main focus. In their interviews, Jessa notes that the raging hormones make them want to get married faster. Do the Duggars not see how dangerous and backward this is? Of course these girls will want to marry the first guy they court- they are young and horny. The faster they get married, the faster they get a full-frontal hug!
The rest of the episode is the kid's having a derby race and it's super boring so I will spare you. Basically, they built the cars and staged a race at a nearby empty parking lot (more TLC Duggar privilege- these people get to do all kinds of cool shit).
The wedding is next week and I am squeeing with excitement! We get to see the kiss that led to the world's fastest embryo implantation and a cadre of modest Duggar bridesmaids. Stay tuned, Duggar faithful. Until next week.