19 Kids And Counting: The Jessa And Ben Wedding Extravaganza

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Duggar faithful, I was so off my game last night. I didn’t realize it was THE WEDDING and sat down at 8:15 and flipped on TLC only to see it started at 8 pm instead of the usual 9 pm. I had to stay up until the re-run at 11 pm in order to catch the first 15 minutes so now, you know how much I care. That said, what a incredible episode. Jessa’s Resting Bitch Face was on fleek and the newlywed’s private first kiss was handled with every bit of awkwardness we could have hoped for. Grab your flasks, everyone (because you know this wedding is dryer than a bone). It’s time to recap this very special wedding edition of 19 Kids and Counting!

We open with the usual rehashing of everyone’s shock and awe that a 22-year old woman raised to marry young and pop out babies is actually, FINALLY getting married! Gag. Jessa and Ben are at a pre-marital counseling session with Pastor Mike and he’s asking them over and over if they are sure about this and whether there’s anything that would prevent them from getting married. Ben folded him arms uncomfortably over his boner and Jessa was all dude, of course we’re getting married. She would marry Big Bird at this point if it got her out of Jim Bob’s prison.

Pastor Mike also makes a point of discussing the WTF-ness of them saving their first kiss for marriage. I believe his exact words were “You know it doesn’t say that anywhere in the Bible, right?” YES PASTOR MIKE! He must be a freakier variety of fundamental Christian where you’re allowed to sinfully touch lips and possibly even chests before committing your entire lives to each other. IMAGINE THAT.

Sierra, the most patient angel of a wedding planner, is at the venue directing everyone into work crews. For a wedding. Work crews, you guys. Maybe if you didn’t invite over 1000 people you could avoid making people you love WORK for your wedding. One of the crews is trash crew. Can you imagine asking some of your guests to man the trash cans at your wedding? I cannot even with this shit, Duggars. Use your reality show millions and hire this out to people who aren’t GUESTS at the wedding. Sierra goes on to say that Jessa’s wedding is the biggest event she’s ever done by herself. She seems nervous but her plan is to pray. Sounds solid.

It’s now the day before the wedding and once again, Jessa simply can’t believe she’s about to get married! God, please shut up. She talks about how their “theme” is basically the same as Jill’s because they’re reusing all her decorations. The few times we see Jill she appears a little weirded out that it’s not about her anymore. Hopefully, the baby will swing the spotlight back around to her soon. Michelle says Jessa worked very hard to stay within budget which is a nice courtesy when it’s not your money. Although she and her sisters and their hair kind of built the Duggar compound with all that sweet reality show and book deal dough. Screw it, Jessa should do whatever she wants for her wedding.

Meanwhile, Sierra and her work crews are getting ready to make over 1500 brownies for the reception. Jesus Christ. She’s thrilled with all this magical help and of course, she notes that it is a blessing. I’m thinking most of these people are just hoping for a little reality show camera time. And maybe a first crack at the brownies before 1000 people have man-handled them. Gross.

Time for the wedding rehearsal and Jim Bob and Michelle have their fundie eyes on. Boob says he’s trying hard not to be as emotional as he was with Jill’s wedding, which should be easy since he clearly doesn’t love Jessa as much. All the evidence we need is that Jill got the mansion and Jessa got the mold infestation. He stresses once again how tough it is to “give them away to another man” and I got my usual Jim Bob DoucheChillsâ„¢. He really and honestly views them as his prizes to dole out as he sees fit. It’s disgusting.

The best part about this rehearsal scene is how totally disenchanted Jessa is about it. Jill was so bright-eyed and happy but Jessa looks ready to bolt at any moment. When she and Boob are practicing the hand-off to her new keeper husband, I thought she might light herself on fire to escape. The schmaltzy stuff is so not her vibe. The mushier Boob gets, the more horrified she appears. Derp pipes in for his part saying he’s not too worried about the order of events as long as he and Jessa are married by the end. Bless your heart, Derp. I don’t think anyone expects you to do much beyond wiping your own butt and breathing. Leave the order of events to the adults.

(Related: 19 Kids And Counting: A Very Duggar Football Game And A Jessa Retrospective)

Time for the rehearsal dinner and this is where I positively lost it. They served chili, you guys. A bunch of people about to sit through a church service the next morning ate pounds and pounds of chili. Obviously, Jessa and Ben also ate it so hello, farty wedding night. Who in the world is all “I know! They’re losing their virginity tomorrow, let’s go with the gassiest, stinkiest fare possible!” They’ll have enough brand-new bodily terrain to deal with that night without also having to suppress a million farts each. These poor kids. Anna expresses concern that Josh won’t make it the next morning with his flight while Ben’s mom, Guin, blubbers over how much she loves the Duggars. She made a memorial table for the dinner honoring Jim Bob and Michelle’s deceased fathers, which was really sweet. She seems relatively normal, I like her.

Jim Bob gives a creepy speech where he gushes over how amazing and also, how SIMILAR Guin and Michelle are. Well, duh. They’re Fundie-Bots. Is there really much differentiation there? Jinger gave a speech and she was too sweet. She obviously loves Jessa and is very sad for her to leave home. Jinger gets my award for most genuine Duggar. The girl has a huge heart and although they’re doing their level best to extinguish that light in her eyes, it’s still there. Jingersnaps, kiddo. We end with Derp struggling through his speech because, literacy. The main take-away is that he and Jessa are very excited to ditch the chaperones because now it’s time to bone, ya’ll!

The wedding morning has FINALLY arrived and of course, Ben and Jessa are together because they can’t stand to spend a moment apart. Jessa talks about her excitement for their first kiss and that she wants it to be “slow and romantic”. Holy hell, Jessa — have you been reading 50 Shades Of Fundie? Dirrrrty girl. Derp’s only concern is the potential for bad breathe, which after last night’s chili onslaught, I can’t say I blame him. He says he’s equipped with mints and spray so Jessa better be ready for his freshly-scented, inexperienced, fish-lip kiss!

It’s apparently freezing outside in November (can you even stand it?!) so Sierra is frantically attempting to procure outdoor heaters for the reception. Now, I realize this is Arkansas, but it’s not freaking Aruba. Did they really not have a contingency plan in case a November day was slightly chilly? Oh, and they also plan to serve ice cream outdoors in 40 degree temps. Guys, this sounds like an absolute fucking nightmare as a guest. Here, take out that trash and then, you can eat ice cream in the cold. Oh, and no alcohol. God dammit, Duggars.

Jessa and Ben part ways after she does his hair and finishes off with a healthy dose of hair spray, of course. These two kill me. Derp reiterates that he will be surprising Jessa with her wedding band and she’s surprising him with her dress. Derp also mentions in passing that he forgot the rings and I doubt anyone is surprised. I’m impressed he’s made it this far, like, even arriving at the venue. Good thing Jessa’s so organized — she will be keeping track of him for the rest of her life.

Everyone is busily getting ready and we flash to Derick painting Jill’s toenails because her baby bump makes them hard to reach. Awwww (gag). Derick reminisces about their wedding, of course, and then we get another forced, totally un-sexy, fish-lip kiss. Ughhh please stop. Michelle nags Jessa to make sure she’s eating something and notes how calm she is. Well yeah, I would be calm too if I knew my tenure as a Duggar kitchen attendant were coming to a close. Babysitting Derp for the next 50 years sounds like a pleasure cruise compared to what she’s dealt with at home for the past 22.

Meanwhile, Sierra continues to panic because no outdoor heaters are available at the last minute on a cold Saturday in Arkansas. Oh well, everyone will have to eat ice cream and freeze! James is wandering with a camera interviewing various family members and he asks Derick about being in the wedding. Derick says he’s not in it, but that he will be escorting Jill out because she’s his wife. Dude, half the groomsmen are her brothers — could one of them not walk her out? They are all nuts.

Jessa is putting on her dress and everyone is freaking out and pacing as though they weren’t all in the bridal shop the day she picked it out. She emerges to a chorus of ooohs and ahhhs, of course. She does look beautiful, but we already knew that since pictures were released immediately post-wedding last fall. Our little Jana Banana is working hard to look excited and I’m not buying it. I think she’s spitting out the Duggar Kool-Aid and knows there is more to life than finding a husband and having babies. She’s repeating the usual platitudes about seasons of life and how wonderful it is that her sister is happy. I see you, Jana. You don’t fool me for a second.

Time for Jim Bob to creep his way into the girls’ dressing room and feast his eyes on Jessa. He is SO gross repeating over and over how beautiful she looks also noting that she looks JUST like Michelle did on her wedding day. Jessa looks ready to flee but manages to squeeze out a tear or two between bouts of Resting Bitch Face. Michelle brings tissues to staunch the mascara flow and Boob blabbers about how blessed he is to have such beautiful daughters. Because we know he doesn’t measure their worth in many other ways. The best part is how Jessa flinches visibly and looks like she might swat him. I can feel the love.

We go back to the James Cam and he gets a great shot of Jim Bob’s nose hairs, Man Tears and Lego guy hair (thanks to the reader who pointed that out). The girls are now outside doing pictures as quickly as they can because it’s freezing and they’re basically in summer dresses. The Duggars pay no never-mind to seasons, apparently. Jim Bob gets sappy again about “losing” Jessa and this is where she starts to crack. She snaps that she’s still his daughter, even if she’s getting married. Jill ate this shit up but Jessa looks like she wants to disappear into a hole in the ground forever. I’ll help her dig.

Time to walk down the aisle and everyone but Jessa looks positively THRILLED. She is sitting around waiting for her moment and her sisters are all lined up crying their eyes out and grinning maniacally at her. She smiles briefly and then, it’s back to Resting Bitch Face. It was honestly amazing how fast she did it. Boob comes back over to her and she literally BEGS him not to cry again. I want to jump through my TV and club him over the head with my cocktail glass. He needs to slow his roll and let this poor girl enjoy her moment.

Jim Bob gets Jessa down the aisle without incident, which is great, because I think she would have shot him with her laser eyes otherwise. Derp is so friggin’ excited to see her and it’s pretty sweet. They get ready to say their vows and I was hoping with my whole heart that he would have them written on his hand, but no dice. He pulled out some flashcards and got down to business. The vows were sweet but as a reader on Twitter pointed out to me — Pastor Mike keeps calling Derp “Benjermin”. Why??

They do a sand ceremony, which I have not seen anyone do since TLC’s A Wedding Story circa 2001, and before we know it, Ben and Jessa are pronounced husband and wife. Now, we already knew that they made a break for it and had their first kiss in private instead of in front of 1000 people. A move I hugely respected them for. It seemed wrong for that to be a public spectacle. So, I was prepared for them to split but actually seeing it happen before my very eyes was nothing short of amazing. You guys, they freaking RAN back up the aisle. I have never seen two people so thirsty. There were rumors that they had The Sex that very moment with someone’s daughter walking in on them but I very much doubt it. I wish it, but I doubt it.

After they fled, Pastor Mike was left to awkwardly explain what had just occurred and he did his best to make it as squicky as humanly possible. These people talk about sex like middle schoolers. He says they are having their first kiss so to give them “a good three hours”. Oh, ew. Don’t fret, though — Derick and Jill did a grody kiss before they walked out just to keep the crowd happy. These people love attention so very much.

On to the lame, freezing outdoor reception! Jessa says in interview that their first kiss was “slow and romantic”, just as they had planned. I’m glad for them, they deserve to not be gawked at like animals in the zoo by a bunch of horny fundies. She throws not-so-subtle shade at Jill by vehemently stating how important it was to her and Ben that this kiss be private. Oh, BURN.

Ben looks super derpy and dazed as they eat their marital ice cream and I’m pretty confident he’s fighting off his very first marital boner after that kiss. They share bites of ice cream and naturally, Boob and Michelle come over to them and once again demonstrate How To Kiss. Because this is totally what normal parents do. They talk about their own wedding AGAIN and various family members give marital advice in interview, including never-even-courted John David. Come on, who knows more about marriage than a 25-year old virgin who’s never been alone with a woman?

They kiss about 12 more times in front of the crowd before departing to lose their virginity and see each other naked a few hours after their first kiss. Sure, totally normal and not at all potentially traumatizing. Jana talks about their plans to possibly adopt and Michelle says they may go into ministry together but the overall plan is OF COURSE to have babies. Jessa mentions they are going on a honeymoon to Europe and I was all dayum, Jim Bob. Baller. They exit to everyone’s cheers and ride off into creepy marital bliss.

That’s all for this week but as mentioned, the spotlight is about to be back on Jill as we get a peek into her pregnancy for Baby Dilly. I cannot wait.

(Related: 19 Kids And Counting: The Wedding Looms And Jessa Continues Her Anti-Cake Campaign)

(Image: Defy Media)

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