Thomas Jacobs arrived on the Aug. 24 episode of Bachelor in Paradise with a date card in hand. Even before Thomas’ arrival, some of the other guys from Katie Thurston’s season of The Bachelorette began warning the rest of the cast about Thomas’ villainous behavior on the show. However, it was a show veteran, Joe Amabile, who felt the effects of Thomas’ arrival first.
Joe hit it off with Serena Pitt on day one, and gave her his rose at the first rose ceremony. However, Thomas decided to ask Serena on the date with him, and — despite warnings from some of the other men — she accepted. This immediately gave Joe flashbacks to his last time on Bachelor in Paradise (season five). He was with Kendall Long on the show, but she was open to exploring other options throughout the season. Although the two did end up together after filming, they wound up breaking up in Jan. 2020.
“I think Serena P. and I really have a connection, so if she went on the date, I’d be a little upset,” Joe admitted to the other guys. “I’d never tell her not to do it. From what I hear from you guys, he doesn’t seem like the best of guys, but I’d have to meet him personally. I can’t be mad at her to go on a date. We already talked about that.”
After accepting the date with Thomas, Serena made sure to pull Joe aside to let him know. “I really like you and I feel good about us,” she assured him. “But it’s still really early and I said I was going to come down here and be open.” In a confessional, Joe added, “This feeling sucks. I’ve been through it before. So this is gonna be a long day, I can tell. I could probably lose her today, which would suck. I don’t want to have to go through that again. It’s really not worth it for me.”
For Joe, the whole situation was reminiscent of his first go-around on Paradise. “Last time in Paradise I ended up dating Kendall on the show, and this guy Leo walked in, they went on one date, and it’s a sucky feeling knowing somebody you really like and you see a potential future with go out with somebody else,” Joe explained. “it’s just not a good feeling and this is exactly like last time.”
On the date, Serena and Thomas had some fun with water sports, and she admitted that she was “very physically attracted to him” right off the bat. It wasn’t long before they were kissing in the ocean. Once they got to talking, though, Serena didn’t hesitate to confront Thomas with what everyone was saying about him.
“I ended up being the guy everyone was fighting with and it happened very quickly,” Thomas explained. “It was to a point where I was taken aback by it. My mindset and approach is I genuinely want to love on everybody.” He went on to share his side of the drama, and added, “One thing I’m always going to do, and I’ll promise you right here, is I don’t want it to ever be a thing where you have to guess what’s going on. I don’t want you to have to be in the dark with what I’m thinking, going through or feeling.”
Serena told Thomas that she was “appreciative” of him for being so honest, and gushed that she had an “awesome time” with him on the date. By the end of the night, Thomas was confident that things were in a good place with him and Serena. Once she got back on the beach, though, she immediately pulled Joe aside to talk, and shared something that we didn’t see happen between Serena and Thomas.
“I told him he should pursue other people,” Serena revealed. “I walked him back and said thanks for talking to me, but I was super overwhelmed by all the information you gave me and I’m not one to be anywhere near the drama. It seemed like a lot, so I’m going to pursue another man.” Of course, Joe was thrilled. “I’m actually really happy she did go on a date and it didn’t work out,” he gushed. “I’m excited to take our relationship to the next level and see where things go. I feel good.”