Last night’s episode of Bachelor in Paradise had some viewers wondering if there may be an unexpected new villain on the horizon — Eliza Isichei.
Although Rodney had to break the news of his new flame to his former love interest, Lace Morris, Rodney and Eliza seemingly hit it off right away as the two went on a date and appeared to have progressed in their relationship since.
However, Monday night’s twist added some heat to the beach as former BIP Season 8 contestant Justin Glaze returned to the show after being eliminated weeks prior.
With his eyes set solely on Eliza for his second run around, Justin immediately asked her on a date. To many viewers’ surprise, Eliza accepted and didn’t ask Rodney about his thoughts on the situation until after she did so.
The exchange between Rodney and Eliza regarding her date with Justin has had Bachelor Nation in a frenzy — mostly with remarks on how emotionally mature Rodney handled the situation by telling Eliza that he didn’t want her to go yet felt he would be holding her back if he forced her to stay and stunted her from making the most of her Bachelor in Paradise experience.
Bachelor in Paradise fans take Rodney Mathew’s side after his talk with Eliza
Many fans took to Twitter to share their thoughts on Rodney and Eliza’s chat before her date, mainly saying that Rodney handled the situation respectfully and that Eliza was gaslighting him and trying to ruin their relationship.
“Why is she gaslighting Rodney?? He already said he didn’t want you to go but he’s trying to be respectful of YOUR experience,” one viewer wrote.
“Excuse me Eliza??? Rodney was literally just letting you do what the ENTIRE POINT OF PARADISE IS, and now you wanna trash talk him to Justin? Absolutely not,” another viewer tweeted.
One Twitter user angrily wrote, “ELIZA RODNEY IS TRYING TO BE COMPLETELY RESPECTFUL AND HONORING PARADISE RULES DO YOU UNDERSTAND??”
Some fans even wondered if the conversation depicted Eliza as this season’s unexpected villain.
Eliza Isichei agrees to a one-on-one date with Justin Glaze
In the biggest twist of Monday’s episode, Eliza ultimately agreed to the one-on-one date with Justin — despite her and Rodney’s seemingly strong relationship.
Eliza and Justin seemed to have hit it off during their dinner table chat, where Eliza even admitted during her confessional, “I think telling myself it’s okay to come and do this and see what else is out there, it made me realize that maybe there is a better fit for me and what I need in a partner.”
The two even ended their date with a smooch under a sky of fireworks, which is just a normal day on the beach in Paradise.
Drama is bound to unfold on tonight’s episode when Eliza and Justin return to the group — which will most definitely include a confused Rodney.
Bachelor in Paradise airs on Mondays and Tuesdays at 8/7c on ABC.