I am in the minority but I liked the Rites of passage segment, often you'd get a nugget or interesting commentary on a fallen warrior that gives you a little extra insight of what a finalist thought of them. I preferred it to the pre-Reunion Reunion segments and interviews with kids, injured military, etc, that is for sure. They do enough of that at the Reunion, don't fill up the final episode with that.
Yeah, interesting that starting with only 18 contestants and having Lindsey quit (she wasn't even invited to the Reunion I imagine) forced their hand. It was solely a numbers thing.