It’s been a rocky charter season on Below Deck and the Valor crew is more than ready to say goodbye to their cramped quarters. Chief stew Kate spent a distracted season trying to keep her demanding relationship alive over often non-existent internet lines. Last week she finally brought her resting bitch face out of retirement and cracked the whip, hard. The rest of the crew (both those under her supervision and not) decided their time would be better served complaining about her than doing their jobs. Even chef Ben went against her, but I’m sure that has nothing to do with his infantile infatuation very serious love affair with one of her stews. But don’t count Kate out yet. I doubt their combined forces are enough to bring her down. And if she gets into any real trouble she can always rely on the Stud of the Sea to have her back.
Emily seems to understand that she’s there to do a job and wants to keep in Kate’s good graces. Sierra, on the other hand, can’t stop smirking every time Kate asks her to do something. I don’t know how Kate manages to get through the day without slapping her. I keep trying and I know she’s on my screen. The hand wants what the hand wants. Emily tries to shake her out of it but she’s intent on being a spoiled brat. It doesn’t help that Ben’s in the background bitching about how Kate doesn’t respect her stews. Shut up and reposition your ugly flowers, Ben. No one asked for your opinion.
Nico and Kyle are on the beach with the guests. They sneak away to complain. Kyle hates Sierra. Nico hates Kate. So much hate for two small men. Kelley and Lauren have a nice moment alone on the boat. Despite all the bickering they’re going to miss each other. Selfie time!
The guests are about to return so it’s time for Ben and Kate to fight about food. It’s the last charter and Kate wants to spoil the guests by having food waiting for them. They spent the day on the beach and as silly as it sounds, that makes you hungry. Ben wants to wait because they’ll probably want to freshen up first. As he’s done all season, Ben asks for Emily’s opinion. It’s obnoxious. Emily doesn’t want to get involved but when Ben pushes it she grudgingly agrees with him. The guests get back, starving. When Kate informs Ben he turns things around and acts like he always planned to feed them right away. Kate is just happy the guests get what they want.
Sierra asks Kate if she thinks the stews didn’t work hard enough all season. When Kate brings up the empty toilet paper rolls, Sierra claims she replaced all the rolls and folded them. Then why were they empty? Her attitude is stunning. Does she not realize this is a job?
The Captain joins the guests for their final dinner, even though he literally growled when Kate gave him the invitation. Kate puts it best. “I’m happy when the guests are happy. And, generally, if the guests are sipping on cocktails with Captain Lee, they’re a little more happy… Even if he doesn’t like it.” The hugely successful dinner even heals the rift between Ben and Kate.
Kyle tells Kate what Nico and Lauren say behind her back. Once the guests leave, she sits them down to discuss it. Nico is a total dick and storms out without listening. Lauren seems scared without her backup so she apologizes. Kelley is just grateful he’s not involved. He laughs thinking about how dangerous it is to have Kate as an enemy.
Ashley goes to the boat to collect Kyle. They argue from moment one. The previews implied Kyle asks her to marry him and I just can’t with another unhappy couple getting engaged. Sigh.
It’s the final night out. Things are going to pop off. Ben and Kate walk off for a smoke. It makes Emily paranoid. She thinks there’s still something between them. Ben is drunk and flirting so I can see why she questions it. Emily asks Ben about it again. He decides to be really mean to Kate just to make Emily happy even though she asks him not to. Mature. In his drunken ragy stupor he doesn’t realize that he’s also being mean to Emily but we all see it.
Kyle decides to propose to Ashley. Again. The last time she threw the ring in his face. True love at it’s finest. He buys Kate’s ring right off her finger and finds a public spot where Ashley will feel pressured to say yes. The romance is giving me goosebumps. He gets down on one knee and she accepts. The crowd goes wild.
Ben puts his grand plan into action. The switch in character from a few minutes before is so staggering that Kate can’t stop laughing. Emily hovers in the shadows, fascinated. Ben takes a big swig of champagne and blurts out, “I don’t like working with you anymore. That’s it.” Kate points out that they just finished working together so it’s kind of a moot point. She gets disgusted with the whole thing and walks away.
The next morning Ben brings Kate a rose. She’s not impressed. He tries to sweet talk his way out of the dog house but it’s not going to be that easy. “I think Ben wants to think that our friendship is salvageable but for me it’s not.”
It’s time for goodbyes. Nico and Lauren are best friends but she still holds out hope of something more. Sierra and Kate are awkward. It seems like Sierra is waiting for an apology but she doesn’t get one. Captain Lee tells Nico he has a good future in boating and Nico beams. Kyle leaves hand in hand with Ashley. Kelley tells Kate that he learned a lot from watching how she did her job. He gets the long stare from Captain Lee but it’s all a front. Captain Lee says he’d be happy to work with Kelley again. They hug it out.
Ben brings his apology tour to Emily. She takes it better than Kate did but admits she’ll still be wary. Ben carries his ugly (now wilted) bouquet onto the dock and leaves it as a surprise for Emily. How many times is he going to give her the same damn flowers? Ben gives himself a seven out of ten for maintaining a relationship while doing his job. Bravo!
Captain Lee and Kate have the most genuine goodbye of all of them. He tells her she still looks like a guest, not a stew. Then Captain Lee wraps things up sweetly. “Without a doubt, I still have the best damn job in the world.”
Program note: I’m not sure if there’s going to be a reunion (it’s not on my DVR schedule for next week) but Below Deck Mediterranean will be back in 2017.