With RR now 20 or so episodes in, we're nearing the end of it already. One of the few remaining pairs currently left in the competition is the Daters and out of all who are left they have by far received the most hate. The flaws people bring up I don't necessarily disagree with, but while I acknowledge flaws the Daters have, it does not cause me to end up disliking them.
A main reason the pair is hated is Stephanie. People think she's annoying, nasty, bossy, and a worse version of Courtney. But I can't really call her a detestable human being like many others paint her out to be. She has done bad things, sure, but this does not equate to her being a bad person in my eyes. In my opinion, I simply find Stephanie extremely competitive, and also occasionally masculine. Reasons why:
- She met Ryan at the gym.
- She does not like losing.
- She injures Ryan out of adrenaline sometimes ("Fist bump.")
She can be very sweet to Ryan sometimes but sometimes there are people in the world who just hate losing. To me Stephanie seems pretty realistic as an individual character.
As for the pair as a whole, they're hated for the bickering they have. People sort of preferred when Ryan was simply being bullied by Stephanie. Personally I loved the direction they went in here. I liked that Ryan eventually had the courage to stand up for himself and him fighting back seemed like something I knew would happen eventually. If he was bullied for their entire run, they'd just become tedious and one-note. Him fighting back brings them to an equal level and their fighting is not juvenile without much detail. There's genuinely well-written dialogue here for me. Like them or not, the bickering between Stephanie and Ryan is written with conviction all the way through.
I'm not going to sit here and say I love the daters or anything. Flaws are still evident. I didn't like seeing them saved twice by a non-elimination, there were better teams to fill their place in Final 6, their storyline has dragged a tiny bit too much, and I have been hoping since Episode 17 that they would just leave, but overall they're harmless to me and I don't think they deserve the ginormous amount of hate tossed at them.
Besides we all know Ice Dancers are better than all these irrelevants anyways.