As end nears, St. Catharines woman seems pretty content on Bachelor in Paradise Canada

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Published June 27, 2023 at 7:23 pm

We suspect St. Catharines resident Lisa Mancini, centre, is channeling her inner Chandler Bing and thinking, "Could this BE any more awkward?" as she's stuck between bickering castmates. (All screenshots: Citytv)

Let’s take a look at both Episodes 7 and 8 of Bachelor in Paradise Canada as Part One and Two since the same drama more or less flowed from one to the next seamlessly. As can be the case, it was beyond ridiculous in this instance.

Okay, Episode 7 started the now-famous “pickle” episode… as in the ladies all seemed to be in one – a pickle, that is – with their fellows.

St. Catharines player (contestant? participant? competitor?) Lisa Mancini was the first to utter the word, noting she was “in a pickle” when it came to her feelings about American school teacher Connor Brennan. (Possibly he’s a musician – depending on what source you reference. Heck, might be both.) Viewers probably didn’t even notice Mancini’s burger flavourizer reference, likely because she didn’t make a big… dill about it.

However, Montreal’s Ana Cruz, like Mancini, a Paradise returnee, turned the entire pickle debacle on its briny head. Caught between two paramours, she fickle-pickled all over the place. In the Dairy Room, she actually said with a straight face, “I’m in a pickle. I have two pickles. Do I go for the pickle that’s brand new? Do I risk it or do I go for the pickle that I’ve already established a connection with? There’s too many pickles in Paradise.”

Okay, at this point, it’s hard to ignore the pickles as it was fast becoming… Vlasic. However, something came up later that was so bizarre, it put the sick in Bick.

But quickly back to Mancini, our local cosplaying, squirrel-loving Garden City heroine.

Well, there was some turmoil in her life over the week. She and Brennan appeared to be in something of a rut. We say “appeared” because Mancini herself hopped on social media, above, to say that perhaps it was being edited this way.

As we’ve noted before each episode is one hour and 24 minutes per episode and two (two hours and 48 minutes total) represent an actual week. Taking away eight hours a day for sleep, that’s 112 hours of which we see under three hours’ worth. A lot of stuff is left on the cutting room floor and Reality-TV producers are famous for steering viewers in the wrong direction.

However, in fairness, she gave them tons of ammunition, noting in the Diary Room both “I think I’m scared of being in love” and “It isn’t easy for me to be vulnerable or talk about my feelings.”

To Brennan directly, she said, “Being single is hella sick. I never have to be upset.” (Okay, that’s going to leave a mark.) But hang tough, it gets better in Episode 8… or at least less awkward?

The episode ended with a game of “Truth or Dare” that, in and of itself, was light-hearted and fun. However, during the game, Toronto’s Maria Garcia-Sanchez made the mistake of resting her hand on the knee of everyone’s favourite Albertan cowboy, Joey Kirchner, much to the chagrin of his partner, Tessa Tookes.

Rather than just say, “Oops, my bad,” Garcia-Sanchez challenged it, saying she’d known him for six years as a friend whereas he’d only been introduced to Tookes for a couple of weeks.


Host Sharleen Joynt, guest judge Queen Priyanka and bartender Kevin Wendt react to the Knee Kerfuffle during the first “Bachelor in Paradise Canada” roast.

When Episode 8 opened, the Knee Dilemma was far from over. Fortunately, comic relief came forward quickly in the form of Canada’s premier drag queen, Queen Priyanka. Would she calm things down? Uhhh, no, she was here to host a Bachelor In Paradise Canada “Roast”, which was bound to make things worse. And it did.

Even as the roast was beginning, Priyanka joked privately that Garcia-Sanchez’s resting face always looked like it was on the verge of tears. Which instantly – and constantly – became noticeable to the viewer.

The Roast goes off. Lots of shots about the Knee Calamity going in all directions but to his credit, Brennan and New York model Chelsea Vaughn knocked it out of the park with hilarious but good-natured physical imitations of the other players. The hall was howling.

Said Priyanka afterward, “I was forced to come here today and I thought how are these boring straight people going to be funny?” At least two of them were.

As for Mancini, Brennan’s stint on stage opened her eyes, showing her he was far more than the nice guy persona she had seen so far. Later on, he went all “tough love” on her and she seemed to appreciate the new look. With basically one episode left (the final episode is in the studio so they can all return and yell at each other), we’ll see how Mancini and Brennan play out.

Regardless, Mancini, if nothing else, has had a far crazier and more satisfying ride than a year ago in Season One, which was a dumpster fire for her. Indeed, there’s been stretches when she was finally Belle of the Ball. Get this woman a tiara, stat! She can likely use it in a cosplay character.

Bachelor in Paradise Canada is aired on Sunday at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Citytv, Citytv+ and Citytv.com, and through the Citytv app.


That’s a pretty happy face Lisa Mancini seems to be aiming at her rose-mate, Connor Brennan. Will things carry on outside camp? We’ll know next week.

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