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S08.E01: A Duggar Says Yes

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When Ben and Jessa's courtship becomes official, the Duggar boys put Ben to the test. Later, the tables are turned on Jessa when she visits Ben's hometown. The whole family reflects on what it means that a Duggar daughter may soon be leaving the nest.

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Ugh, they are courting, not engaged.  While I want Jessa to flee the hell outta there, they make way too big of a deal about this crap

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By "test" do they mean quizzing them on Bible passages? Traditional gender roles? Gothard's rules to abide by?

I like to think they're going to forcefeed poor Benny tatertot casserole until he pukes. Wouldn't that be a sight to see.

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They make it seem like courtship is always going to lead to marriage. That's not always the case. J'Chelle and Boob are milking this for everything they can. They have nothing else going on. 

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By "test" I'm sure it's semi code for "Are you good enough for my sister?"  Which to them is Bible passages and eschewing birth control.  Because MY "are you good enough list" would be:

  • School education?
  • Stable and decent income?
  • Where will you be living?
  • Criminal background (yeah, kids 18, but I work probation.  Juvie records count!)
  • Family background (how many macadamias are hiding in the family tree, kid?)
  • How will you treat my sister?

I'm more concerned about how Jessa will be treated, not how many Gothard Bible passages this kid knows

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Is it just me or does Paw Duggar give anyone else the creeps? He seems so slimey to me.

Yup. You aren't the only one. 

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Ben's Dad=Steve Carell.  They could be brothers. 

I posted the same comment at Twop at 9:59pm.  It was deleted because the episode hadn't ended yet.  The preview for next week's episode was playing.  I will not miss that B.S at all. 

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I can't get over Jessa calling Ben "Tall, dark, and handsome." I think I missed the entire rest of the episode dying over that.

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That was painful.  Awkward and stilted.  Jim Bob is creepier by the minute. 

Jessa sees things in 'black and white'.  Their description of her sounded a lot like me. (Minus the freaky religious focus.)

I think Hannie has a crush on Ben.  She's a cutie.

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The adjective I kept hearing from the kids (including one of the little boys!) is "handsome."  Handsome, handsome, handsome.  And of course, there is something to be said for physical attraction, but how about personality?  How about intellect?  Sense of humor? 

Oh, that's right.  Fundamentalism doesn't value any of that silly stuff.

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Bad, bad, bad....  Why did Mullet have to sit between Jessa and Ben in his truck?  There was decent space between them.  Mullet hugs some members of Ben's family, but she cannot hug her own children.  I guess JimBoob can really be cheap when it comes to taking his family out for dinner.  Love it when some of the younger girls said they did not want to get married.  Were both families coach into saying the same thing when it came to how they felt about Ben and Jessa.  Geez...

Jessa aka Miss Smug is ending up with an immature anti-abortion nutcase, and Jill is ending up with a older guy with a college education  and a decent job  Karma, baby, karma.

Edited by bigskygirl

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This episode took creepy fundie parenting to a whole new level. The next logical step to this dictator parenting will be for Boob and Mullet to go along on the honeymoon, and coach them on babymaking.

Ugh. I need brain bleach.

Edited by NJRach
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Hey guys!  I know we're all new here, so I'm going to be gentle.  While we are less restrictive about the "boards on boards" stuff than TWoP was, there no need to discuss moderators from the other site, or what their rules might have been.  That definitely seems off-topic.

We're glad your here, but let's not bash other people, OK?  Thanks.

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So it occurred to me that Jim Bob's choice of suitors for his daughters so far really reveals how he sees them. Jill (who is capable, kind, and has goals) is set up with a young man who has education, experience and also seems quite kind and stable. Jessa (who is a smug mean girl) gets a boy with no career, no education, and who is most likely more interested in the cameras than her (as evidenced by him creating his own fan page; the egotism behind that move still blows my mind).

Well played, Jim Bob, well played.

Edited by Jenniferbug
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Thoughts:

  • TH of the night: Jackson and Hannie: "I like Ben." "Me too." "He smells good!" "I KNOW!"..."I want some of that cologne!!!"
  • FU Interwebz Moments: The huge pan of peppers, Josh and Ben shootin' the breeze while pretending to work out, Mullet acting like she was doing Josie's hair.
  • Cringe-worthy Cheese Line: Jill: "I'm in love with someone I've NEVER MET!!!!"
  • Useless Information: The Duggars ordered enough pizza to make two life sized replicas of JB and Mullet making out. --- Ok, I didn't read the blurb, but I think my version is better.
  • Uncomfortable Moment: The Mullet sandwich in Ben's truck. Just...no. NO! I think that your 20 yr old daughter can handle sitting next to her bf/hubs to be, Mullet. If she can't, it's your fault because you have stunted her growth at a 11-12 yr old level and she has zero idea that she can sit next to a guy and not have to worry about getting knocked up. Because y'know, handsex and kissing before marriage does not lead to babies! And even if it did, they would never get evil abortions...whoop de whoop.

Other: I still heart Joyless Anna, Hannie and Jackson. The Lost Girls are shaping up to be a hoot as well.

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Said while smacking my head......I just realized why frontal hugs are not allowed between males and females.

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Hoo boy, nothing says "class act" like a guy who can't put down a Styrofoam cup when approaching his girlfriend's parents about courting, when proposing courtship to the girl, and when announcing the courtship to the family.  Maybe he had to hold on to something to keep from reaching out and grabbing a boob.

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Why was Michelle staring at JB when Bin was in the pantry, talking about making it official ? Grow up, Michelle !

I was a little creep out with the way Mullet was acting around Ben.  Maybe she has the secret hots for him.  I will now go clean out my mind with brain bleach.

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This episode was awkward. It's obvious that Jessa didn't want this filmed. Way to go, Boob and Mullet. Making money off of your daughter, with something that she doesn't want filmed. 

 

How can Jill be in love with someone she's never met? 

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Was he planning to ask Jessa to court that day? I can't decide if he was asking her parents permission and they blind sided him by saying "well let's ask Jessa. Go bring her in here!" If he truly meant to ask her right then, that sucks for her. I've seen the elaborate courtship proposals of the Bates kids and (like it or not) that seems to be the norm. Honestly, this courtship proposal was more awkward than Josh proposing to Anna and that's saying something. 

Loved all the talking heads from the family about Jessa. Geez, her own family thinks she's a cold bitch! The only one who said anything nice about her was Jill. 

I thought it interesting that John asked if this was Ben's first courtship. It may be his first courtship, but does that mean he's never dated before? There's some semantic wiggle room there.

Is Ben being able to name all of them in order proof of something? I would guess a lot of people who watch the show can name them all in order! 

The truck scene was awkward, but seriously, Ben couldn't borrow a different vehicle to pick them up? His parents have 7 kids, but no vehicle that could comfortably seat 3 people was available? How considerate. 

Jed and Jer are becoming my favorites. Can we free them? They seem fun and adorable. Also I really hope there are courtships in the works for Jana and Jinger too. I find it hard to believe that no suitable men have expressed interest in them.

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J'Chelle and Boob probably have trouble naming them in birth order. I'd like to test them on the birthrates, and their kids favorite things. 

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I'm thinking the family made the remarks about Jessa's cold demeanor to explain her, well, cold demeanor with Ben. It's like those terrible novels you read in which the lord's daughter is forced to marry a Plantagenet. 

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I've seen less awkard "dates" at the first Jr high dance for a group of 7th graders,  Jessa is in this "courship" to get the hell out of that house and nothing more, she acted like she could BARELY stand that creeper Ben.

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Was it me, or did Jackson seem particularly into grooming this episode?  He was talking about how Ben smelled good and he wanted to get Ben's cologne, and then kept insisting to JB that Josie's hair needed to be curly because "Mom" likes it curly. 

(JB and Michelle have already been challenged to name all their children, in birth order, and JB at least failed spectacularly.  It was in one of those early, hour-long specials.)

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I was offended when Boob and Mullet gave their 'candid' opinions of Jessa. They made some nasty comments, and Mullet giggled afterward, of course. Guess that meant it was ok to trash her daughter.

I'd love to see the Duggar kids give their 'candid' opinions of their parents.

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It was very telling that Jim Bob and Michelle trash talked their daughter on camera.  If she gave her honest opinion of  them, I doubt she would be on camera for months.   Way to show some respect to your adult daughter who basically does all your grunt work.

Ben is a very awkward 18 year old. not surprising given the non life experiences those children have.   I think the courtship scene was staged. Surely given the fundy fascination on courting, there was surely a dinner date involved. 

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So when is the hand sex going to start? Eeew. Don't think I could watch that again. Might have to switch off the tv and go outside lol.

Regarding Boob and his unhealthy interest and obsession with all things involving courting, is he kind of, like, a little too interested? My creeper radar is going off. He gets all smiley and goofy, like he gets off on this stuff.

I remember dating and my mom and dad were of the nice-to-meet-ya, get-her-home-by-midnight school of parenting.. They trusted me, and they never were that interested until I'd been dating someone for a while. Boob and Mullet are so helicoptery and controlling that it's scary.

Edited by NJRach

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Ratings were good last night.  We could have them around for quite awhile.

2.259 M viewers and a .7 rating.

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Styrofoam cup: I hope not, but some southern gentlemen around here carry one to hold smokeless tobacco "juice."  Surely to heavens not, but that was weird.  Poor guy seems to have social anxiety, so maybe it was just a security blanket or maybe a drink to assuage nervous dry mouth. 

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Gah, that poor girl!  It's obvious she doesn't want a public courtship, but Ma and Pa just have to have the ratings. 

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Not specifically related to this episode, but not unrelated either: As someone who recently had to buy a bigger fridge when two family members moved in with us, making at total of 7 (including 2 teenaged boys), I'm intrigued by how the Duggers get by with only one fridge.  The one you see in the kitchen can't be the only one, can it? I mean, these people have 4 dishwashers.  There must be more hiding somewhere.  They probably need their own walk-in.

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I think there is an industrial fridge in the "ugly" kitchen.  The kitchen we always see is the "pretty" one.

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Jessa's behaviour in this episode made me really uncomfortable. She had a smile pasted on her face the whole time (much like her mother's fake permasmile) but she was so awkward and antisocial. People kept talking to her and she would just smile and it would take her a long time to answer, like she was having a hard time formulating a response. It's got to be hard to be "courting" on national television, but this girl has been on television since she was a small child. She has had so much practice.

I think she's terrified. Of what, I don't know. Disappointing her parents? That Ben won't marry her and she'll be jilted on t.v.? That Ben will marry her and she doesn't love him? That she will be forced to become another baby maker?

There's no indication that she is really in love, or lust, or infatuated, etc. She just seems scared.

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Of course she's scared.  These morons put so much emphasis on the absolute horrors and dangers of lust, any way she wiggles might inspire a man to leave his wife (ala teenage Michelle), premarital sex will lead you straight to hell with no forgiveness, being alone with any man, let alone the man you're courting, will cause you to shed your clothes and do the nasty.  Plus, what if it turns out she doesn't really love him?  Then she will have lost a piece of her heart.  These people make things so damn extreme no wonder a lot of these women are afraid of courtship.

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I don't think Jessa is scared; I think she's pissed.  She seems 1000% DONE with everything involved with her family and the show.  She seems especially sick of her parents, and with JimBob bossing them around and Michelle trying to cop a feel in the truck, who could blame her?

She doesn't seem to like Ben all that much, but she seems more pragmatic about choosing a mate.  More "will this work?" than "following her heart," which, really, is probably smart given that she will have no second chances at this. 

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I agree, this episode was really painful.

Hoorah for Jill! As much as others may not like her, I always have. I can't wait to see her elope. (One can hope.)

Jenny does not look like the Duggars at all. Is she the milkman's kid?

Jackson and Hannie's talking heads were super adorable. Is it weird I want to raise them myself?

Ben was....sheesh, I don't even know. Cringe-worthy through and through. Poor Jessa.

ETA: I agree with the whole "Jessa is scared/angry". I think she's both. I don't know her myself, but I don't think she likes Ben. When she was on the "double date" with Ben and his parents and his father asked if she thought the relationship was going places (or whichever weird way he worded it), she just smiled and nodded. Not exactly what I'd call being sure. I think she knows they're not compatible and is afraid. This is pure speculation and no where have I read this, but I'm getting a strange vibe from Ben. Like a future-extreme-disciplinarian vibe. I stand by my "poor Jessa". I would not want to be in her shoes.

Edited by SpaghettiTuesdays

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Ben is cringe worthy. I loved how he kept saying that he was considerate of the feelings of others and never wants to offend them. I thought "yeah, unless they're not Christian...or liberal...or have ever considered an abortion...or..."

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Poor Ben/Bin. All I can think is that boy should be a freshman on a campus somewhere, making friends and finding his way. Definitely not trying to snare the hottest Duggar girl and looking at fatherhood within the year. Somehow I think Bin's father put him up to this.

And Jessa looks too much like the scared young girls in photos of the polygamist sects, where they are matched up with someone and awkwardly go along with it. I rewatched the courting episode today and twice, after announcing the courtship to her parents and then to the rest of the family, Jessa stood there like she was made of wood. In Boob's office, she didn't touch Bin's hand, or even take a step towards him. Michelle took her arm. And when they announced it to the family, she was standing closer to Boob, and moved towards him. Bin stood there toying with his styrofoam cup.

I also noticed some really odd editing too. When Bin asks Jessa to court him, the camera is behind him. Then it's next to him, like they spliced two retakes together. I wonder how many times they had to reshoot it to look somewhat natural.

And in the restaurant scene, on the doubledate with Bin's parents, Jessa says something about Bin driving up to attend church (yep merely a four hour drive, but who's counting), and then she kind of pauses, and then it's obviously spliced and she covers with saying they got to know each other at the homeschooling conference. It seemed so fake. 

Also there was no one else in the restaurant, except the wait staff. I thought that was pretty odd. I call BS on the whole courtship. Seems like Boob needed a subplot to hold them over until Mullet's next pregnancy.

Edited by NJRach

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Ben's Dad=Steve Carell.  They could be brothers. 

I posted the same comment at Twop at 9:59pm.  It was deleted because the episode hadn't ended yet.  The preview for next week's episode was playing.  I will not miss that B.S at all. 

You and me both, sister! Hoping ALL the TWoP-ers find this site and breath the sweet air of FREEDOM! (Please don't leave Howard a trail of breadcrumbs...

Edited by NewBaku
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Nice to see you all on Previously.TV Airlines. Remember, you need to check your TWoP baggage at the gate before boarding.

Sorry about that.  Baggage stowed away. :)

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OK. I admit that I dozed off for a few minutes during this episode. The parts that I saw consisted of a LOT of talking heads. I know that there are a lot of opinions to share. I had to wonder how it was that the production company evidently got so little footage out of an important milestone in the life of that family. Usually, shows like this have to scramble for anything interesting and this is all we got ? SMH

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