Did The Bachelorette's Fantasy Suites Give Zac An Unfair Advantage?

the bachelorette season 16 part 1 finale tayshia zac paint abc
(Image credit: ABC)

Spoilers ahead for Part 1 of The Bachelorette Season 16 finale.

The wild ride of The Bachelorette Season 16 is almost at an end, with Tayshia Adams hoping to follow in Clare Crawley's footsteps in finding love at La Quinta. The first half of the two-part finale featured Tayshia's Fantasy Suites, with three guys still in the running: Brendan Morais, Ivan Hall, and Zac Clark. Well, fans who have kept up with spoilers knew that the date with Brendan wouldn't go the way Tayshia wanted, but I'm left wondering if The Bachelorette gave Zac an unfair Fantasy Suites advantage over Ivan.

Ivan was the first of the three remaining men to join Tayshia for their Fantasy Suite date, but it wasn't exactly the steamiest activity that two people in Bachelor Nation have ever done together. In fact, they were tasked with climbing into literal ice baths to try and break the world record for the world's longest, coldest kiss.

Fortunately, they broke the record and seemingly managed to survive the kiss without any permanent damage to their bodies, and headed off to dinner. Dinner went well, and Tayshia invited him to join her in a Fantasy Suite. Instead of catching a break and being rewarded for the ice bath with the kind of luxury suite that Bachelor Nation viewers have come to expect, this is what Ivan and Tayshia were given:

the bachelorette season 16 finale part 1 ivan trailer fantasy suite screenshot

Yes, that is a trailer. The Bachelorette dressed it up with lights and a setup outside, but at the end of the day, Ivan's Fantasy Suite with Tayshia was a cramped trailer, and their "furniture" to enjoy their champagne and doughnuts was basically a set of lawn chairs outside. There was barely any room to move inside, so it's not a huge surprise that they apparently spent the whole night talking. Ivan didn't seem to have any regrets, but if you ask me, The Bachelorette did him dirty with the ice bath followed by the trailer Fantasy Suite.

And the treatment of Ivan only looked worse when it came to Tayshia's next Fantasy Suite of the episode. While she and Ivan had to climb into ice baths, she and Zac stripped down and painted some art (as well as each other), followed by a shared shower to clean up. Suffice it to say that I wasn't concerned for their health at any point, which isn't the case with poor Ivan in the ice bath! Then, when dinner went well and they headed to their abode for the night, this is what they found:

the bachelorette season 16 finale part 1 zac fantasy suite villa screenshot

While Ivan got a night in a trailer after freezing himself in an ice bath, Zac went from doing art with Tayshia to a two-floor villa, complete with luxury furnishing, a bedroom that looked larger than the whole trailer, champagne that they could drink inside with elbow room to spare, and more. Unsurprisingly, they enjoyed their night in the villa, and were jumping on the bed the next morning just for the fun of it. Tayshia was all smiles, and Zac was clearly happy.

I wanted to be happy for them, but I couldn't get over the contrast between what The Bachelorette gave to Ivan and what The Bachelorette gave to Zac. Tayshia isn't going to choose her possible future husband over who got to share a more spacious room with her during Fantasy Suites week, but she didn't have to overcome physical pain to enjoy her date with Zac the way she did with Ivan, and it just doesn't feel fair to me.

In theory, neither Ivan nor Zac will go home after their Fantasy Suite dates thanks to Brendan taking himself out of the running for Tayshia's heart, but the return of Ben Smith pulling a Bennett Jordan move despite Tayshia emotionally sending him home last week will undoubtedly complicate things. Find out who Tayshia chooses with the Season 16 finale of The Bachelorette, airing on Tuesday, December 22 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC. For some viewing options in the new year (including Matt James' debut as The Bachelor), check out our 2021 winter and spring premiere schedule.

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. CinemaBlend's resident expert and interviewer for One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and a variety of other primetime television. Will not time travel and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).